This Week in TV:
A survey reveals House of Cards has improved Netflix's customer loyalty, Gillian Anderson has joined the cast of a new thriller pilot from NBC, Lee Pace has been cast as a lead in AMC's Halt and Catch Fire, Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter is developing a new show involving a demon hunter for FX, Warehouse 13 is returning on April 29 and Archer has been renewed for season 5.
A recent survey revealed that Netflix's original programming, particularly its new series House of Cards, has increased subscriber loyalty among its existing customers.
According to a survey conducted recently by the investment firm Cowen and Co., 86 percent of Netflix subscribers said that the political drama House of Cards starring Kevin Spacey makes them less likely to cancel the service. Although only 10 percent of subscribers and people with access to a Netflix account watched at least one episode of House of Cards within 12 days of it being available, 90 percent said that they liked the idea of releasing the entire season at once and nearly 80 percent of its viewers called the show at least "good", while nearly 40 percent called the show "exceptional."
However, we also have to consider that the survey was issued to a small sample size of just 1,229, of which only 346 were Netflix customers and another 223 said they had access to an account. It's hard to judge how an entire viewing nation gets their content and how many actually responded positively to House of Cards, but the survey could still be an indication that Netflix is heading in a direction that could change the game for network and cable TV.
With Netflix's investment in original programming already yielding large dividends - at least in terms of keeping its subscribers happy - it's safe to say we can expect the company to develop more new shows and continue to change the way customers receive their content.
Gillian Anderson, best known for playing Dana Scully on X-Files, has been cast in a new thriller pilot for NBC along with 666 Park Avenue's Rachel Taylor.
Anderson will play Meg Fitch, the CEO of a conglomerate who learns her daughter and her daughter's classmates have been abducted by unknown conspirators with a hidden agenda. Taylor will co-star in the Rand Ravich (Life) pilot as Fitch's estranged sister, who also happens to be the highly-skilled FBI agent assigned to the case. The sisters share a secret that explains their separation, but they must join forces, working together to get Fitch's daughter back.
We've been seeing more of Taylor lately - in such shows 666 Park Avenue and Grey's Anatomy - but American audiences haven't seen much of Anderson since X-Files' run ended in 2002. However, after spending several years on British television, Anderson is coming back to American TV in a big way, as she's also landed a recurring guest role on NBC's Hannibal.
It sounds like they have an interesting premise to work with here. It's certainly one we see in films all the time, but not as much on TV. If the sister characters have dynamic chemistry, it could make for some solid drama.
Lee Pace (Pushing Daises) has landed the lead role in Halt and Catch Fire, a new AMC series revolving around the personal computer boom of the 1980s.
Pace will star as Joe McMillan, a former superstar IBM salesman who leaves to join a new company in Texas' Silicon Prairie, which he plans to force into the personal computing industry. He then recruits a young, brash, but extremely talented engineer and programmer, played by McKenzie Davis (Smashed), to be his partner as they challenge the technological titans of the personal computing industry in the early 1980s.
The Chris Cantwell and Chris Rogers-created series will focus its story as much on the relationship between the two partners as it will on the era of the computing boom. As their company (presumably) grows, greed and ego could ultimately stand in the way of their success, as the two visionaries battle for control.
When you think of period drama on AMC, you obviously first turn to Mad Men and that's a comparison the show and the network will hope you make - but we'll have to wait and see if audiences feel this new series is worthy of that company.
Halt and Catch Fire is expected to begin production sometime in 2013.
Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter is developing a new show revolving around a demon hunter titled Lucas Stand for FX.
Since the Sutter-FX partnership has already yielded profitable returns for the network, it's been decided to let him develop a new series along with former Hell on Wheels showrunner, John Shiban. The show he is currently working on, Lucas Stand, is described as an action/horror drama that follows a special ops solider who has been selected to travel through time and space to hunt down hell's most nefarious demons in an ultimate quest for salvation.
The show is part of Sutter's recently-signed three-year deal with the network - and although he knows that Sons of Anarchy is the most successful show on FX, he is poised to bring it to a close after season 7, so he would like to have another project lined up and ready to go.
The project doesn't sound like anything that's on TV right now, though its premise is similar to the Spawn comic book series - which also has a film reboot in the works - in some ways. We are probably at least a couple of years away from seeing it, so we'll have to keep our eye on how the project develops in the meantime.
Syfy network has just unveiled a new trailer and a return date for Warehouse 13 season 4.5.
After nearly an eight month hiatus, season 4 of Warehouse 13 will continue, returning to the Syfy network on April 29. However, the show has been to moved to a new Monday 10 p.m. time slot in order for Syfy's new series Defiance to serve as its lead-in.
The midseason premiere will pick up right where last year's mideason finale left off, with Artie (Saul Rubinek) having infected the world and the Warehouse Team with the Black Orchid Artifact’s pandemic virus, which will force the team to do everything they can to stop its spread. The April 29th premiere will also deal with Polly Walker’s (Caprica) new character arc, as a historian that may know more about the Warehouse than the team realizes.
Check out the trailer above to get a sneak peek at the continuation of season 4 and make sure to check out Warehouse 13 when it returns to Syfy on April 29.
FX has announced it has renewed its animated spy comedy series Archer for season 5.
With season 4 of Archer receiving the best ratings the show has ever had, FX has made the wise decision to renew the series for season 5. The network has been continually impressed with the show, which it considers to be one of its flagship comedies.
“’Archer’ is one the very best comedy series on television,” said Nick Grad, EVP of Original Programming for FX. “Adam Reed, Matt Thompson and the incredible cast – H. Jon Benjamin, Aisha Tyler, Jessica Walter, Chris Parnell, Judy Greer, Amber Nash, George Coe, and Lucky Yates – are comedic geniuses. It is truly rewarding the way in which the audience and fans have embraced their work and that the ratings to continue to grow. The quality of ‘Archer’ is undeniable.”
Season 5 will consist of 13 episodes, but it's unclear how and when the network will air them. However, be sure to look for Archer season 5 sometime next year and continue to tune in to new season 4 episodes, which air every Thursday @10 on FX.