What will be your next favorite TV show? Next week, the big networks are unveiling their fresh picks for fall, and who knows? One of them just might be your new pop culture obsession.
NBC will officially announce its fall lineup on Monday, but on Tuesday alone the network ordered five new pilots to series (that's in addition to the previously announced Matthew Perry dramedy Go On, and the Bryan Fuller-produced Hannibal). Here's what we know about the shows -- as well as how the deluge of new programming could affect the chances for 30 Rock, Parks & Recreation and Community to get picked up for another season.
The New Normal: No, it's not a satire about living through the Great Recession (although that would be very relatable). This new sitcom from Glee's Ryan Murphy focuses on a gay couple (Andrew Rannells and Justin Bartha) and the surrogate mommy (Georgia King) who's having their baby.
Revolution: "Hard to explain" might be the best way to describe this fast-paced, sci-fi thriller from Lost's J.J. Abrams. So we'll quote TV Line's Michael Ausiello as he takes a stab at it: "a high-octane action drama following a group of characters struggling to survive and reunite with loved ones in a world where all forms of energy have mysteriously ceased to exist." Alrighty then!
Save Me: In this comedy, Men in Trees star Anne Heche plays a Cincinnati housewife who believes she's channeling God. This makes life difficult for her husband, a hotel manager who'd been planning to leave her for another woman. Interesting. (Where do they get this stuff?)
1600 Penn: It's a family comedy a la Modern Family. But this dysfunctional bunch happens to be the first family. Bill Pullman plays the POTUS, while Jenna Elfman plays the first lady.
Animal Practice: It's a workplace comedy, and the office is an animal hospital with a cranky vet (Justin Kirk). He likes animals, hates their owners, and no doubt puts up with a crazy array of helpers.
And what of NBC's existing Thursday night comedies, especially fan favorites like 30 Rock, Parks & Recreation and the low-rated Community? According to Deadline, 30 Rock will most likely be renewed for a final season of 13-14 episodes, and Parks and Community's renewals are considered probable too. But the site also reports that "all returning NBC comedy series are likely to get short orders" -- meaning fewer than the standard 22 episodes. Hey, it's not ideal... but we'll take it.