In last week’s Watercooler, we focused on the comedies that the U.S. networks have commissioned for the 2012-2013 season. Now it’s time to get more serious. This week, we turn our attention to some of the 43 drama pilots requested by the nets.
The usual genres — legal, hospital and cops — are, of course, represented on this year’s roster. Among the legal series are Fox’s Guilty, which revolves around a defense attorney who’s wrongfully convicted of fraud and CBS’s Baby Big Shot, about a woman from a blue-collar background who winds up in a white-shoe Manhattan law firm.
Medical dramas come in the form of the CW’s First Cut, about a medical student who finds that the hospital world is a bit too similar to high school, Fox’s Mob Doctor about a woman who’s forced to moonlight as a doctor for the mafia and NBC’s County, which takes place in an under-funded, frenetic L.A. County hospital.
But cop dramas outnumber all the rest — with CBS taking the lead in that category. Five out of seven of The Eye’s commissioned dramas revolve around cops — including Widow Detective (about a police detective who becomes a surrogate husband and father to the families of his deceased partners), Applebaum (about a stay-at-home mom who becomes a private eye), an Untitled Pileggi/Ralph Lamb Project (based on the true story of a rodeo cowboy turned Vegas sheriff), Golden Boy (which tracks a cop’s meteoric rise from officer to police commissioner) and Trooper (about a mother turned New York State trooper). Seems mom/cops are especially popular at CBS this year.
ABC’s got Gotham, about a female cop who discovers a magical world within NYC; and NBC’s got Midnight Sun about an FBI investigation into the disappearance of an Alaskan commune.
NBC’s putting the spotlight on other heroes in uniform with Chicago Fire – a drama from Dick Wolf that revolves around the Windy City’s firefighters.
There are also some soapy dramas being considered — including ABC’s Devious Maids, about four ambitious Beverly Hills maids; Scruples, which centers on a rich and powerful clothing designer; Nashville, a family soap based in the Nashville music scene and Americana, a soap set revolving around a legendary fashion designer, his family and business. (Apparently designers are as popular at ABC as mom-cops are at CBS).
Also interesting, both the ABC and the CW are presenting their own takes on the classic fairytale Beauty and the Beast. ABC’s version is a fantastical re-imagining of the story set in a mythical, dangerous world where a beautiful and tough princess discovers an unlikely connection with a mysterious beast. The CW’s version is loosely based on the CBS drama from the late 1980s, and is described as a modern-day romancer with a procedural twist.
We weren’t necessarily waiting anxiously for a revival of that story, but who knows… it could work.