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2005 Fall Schedules: 'Fox' klingt besser auf Deutsch

I don’t follow TV very closely. What—don’t you write for a TV website, you ask? Well, uh, not that much. Don’t get me wrong—I love my TiVo. I can sit and pick out shows to record for hours. “You play with that TiVo more than you watch TV,” my ex-roommate used to say. Bastard.

So I do watch TV, I just don’t follow the upfronts like some people follow the NBA draft. But Lutz shamed me into writing one of these reviews, so I’m going to do it. It’s a good thing I picked Fox, too, because they are idiots. I can mock the new shows, confident that I won’t end up looking like Phil when he said Frasier wouldn’t last as long as AfterMASH. I mean, he keeps getting grief about that and it was twelve years ago. Only from me, but still.

So when I say that Prison Break (a show about a guy who gets himself arrested and put in prison so he can help his brother, who is on death row, escape) is very stupid and should be cancelled before we even learn the names of all the cruel but quirky prison guards, I can do it with confidence. Even if the show turns out to be great, Fox is likely to screw it up and give up on it too quickly, just like Undeclared, Firefly, Andy Richter Controls the Universe… damn you, Fox! Now I really want to see how that show turns out. I bet there’s a prison break.

One might think Fox has learned a lesson from reversing the cancellation of Family Guy. But I doubt it, and I’m not sure I’m thrilled about the show’s return. I’m a big fan, and even went to see the big “Family Guy Live” show last month in L.A., which was pretty funny, especially the fanboys during the question-and-answer session. (Sample question, without exaggeration: “Seth Green, are you going to have any more Buffy actors do voices on Robot Chicken? And, like, do you ever talk to Sarah Michelle Gellar?”) It’s just that I suspected what show creator Seth MacFarlane confirmed on Dinner for Five: in the post-Janet Jackson’s boob world, it’s hard for jokes to get past the censors. The question I would have asked at the Q&A was this: “Hey, a few years back I was at a Halloween party talking to a punk kid fresh out of Harvard who was writing for The Simpsons, and he made a snide remark that Family Guy was a total rip-off. Don’t you think it’s the other way now, with Homer just as mean and stupid as Peter Griffin?” Of course, since The Simpsons is also on Fox, I probably wouldn’t have gotten an answer. But that’s why I’m not sure that Family Guy really has much point anymore. It probably would be helped by a speedy cancellation of McFarlane’s other show, American “this show wishes it was as good as Futurama” Dad, though.

My favorite summary of the Fox announcement is on a German website, helpfully translated by Google. This is where I learned about Bones. As much as I wanted to, anyway. The point of CSI was that it brought something fresh to the tired genre of police procedurals, so doing a rip-off of it makes for a double-tired show. I am looking forward to seeing “ex-fishing rod David Boreanaz,” though.

I’m also looking forward to The Loop which “is fresh a Comedy series around one from the University of coming boy man, who must only still learn the true life to know.” We’ll have to wait for mid-season for that one, though, and it’s probably not as interesting as it sounds in badly translated German.

The Reunion is a high-concept twist on 24 that follows a group of friends over 20 years, with each show being one year. It seems like it won’t work (and how could it be renewed?) but sometimes constraints like that actually produce an interesting show. It’s on after The O.C so it probably has a shot.

There’s not much else that’s new that I’d even bother to set my TiVo to record, much less actually get around to watching. I can’t even get myself to type the names of any other new shows here. The big news about Fox’s fall season is supposed to be that there’s no reality shows on the schedule (they are being saved for mid-season replacements). That doesn’t seem like big news, though, because the way Fox cancels shows (and rushes rip-offs of other network’s reality shows into production) it won’t be long before we have to watch some idiot in a confessional booth telling us why he isn’t as selfish as he actually is. Actually, that’s one of the gimmicks on a new Fox sitcom, but as I said, I’m too tired to type the name. In fact, I’d probably pick it in the TV dead pool, if Fox didn’t get a late start because of baseball.

Fox also cancelled some shows I never heard of, except for the lousy one with Andy Richter. They should give him a show every year, then cancel it. House is back, which I don’t watch because the promos suggest it’s mainly a show about scowling people. I’m really happy Arrested Development is surviving, though. I recommend the first season DVD of that show if you haven’t been watching.

So I’ll probably set the TiVo to record a few Fox shows next Fall, but then I won’t get around to watching any of them except for Arrested Development. And I expect Fox will be idiotic enough to replace that with a rip-off of Three Wishes by January.


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