Summertime is when “the livin’ is easy,” to paraphrase George Gershwin, but it’s not so easy for the U.S. TV networks anymore. Thanks in part to the year-round premiere schedule of on-demand services like Netflix and U.S. cable networks, the American broadcast networks can no longer rely on reruns to fill their summer schedules if they want to compete.
So, in addition to flooding their schedules with all sorts of reality series and competitions (including NBC singing competition The Winner Is…, CW’s wilderness competition The Hunt, Fox’s workplace reality series Does Someone Have to Go? and many, many more), the networks are bringing some interesting new scripted series this summer. Here are some we’re excited about.
- NBC dramedy Camp (being distributed internationally by NBCUniversal) is set on Camp Little Otter, a wicked slice of lake-side heaven, full of rich and slightly dysfunctional characters. While parents decompress with gin, teenagers make mischief falling in and out of love, and kids run wild, having the time of their lives. Premieres July 10.
- CBS drama Under the Dome (being distributed by CBS Studios), is a 13-episode serialized drama based on Stephen King’s best-selling novel about a small town that is suddenly and inexplicably sealed off from the rest of the world by an enormous transparent dome. The town’s inhabitants must survive post-apocalyptic conditions while searching for answers about where the dome came from and if and when it will go away. Premieres June 24.
- ABC’s soapy drama Mistresses (distributed by Disney) was first introduced to buyers at last year’s L.A. Screenings, but is just now set to air. The series follows four women and their illicit relationships. Sounds steamy (and like a perfect replacement for Desperate Housewives fans). Premieres June 3.
- NBC’s comedy Save Me (distributed by Sony Pictures Television) was also first introduced at the 2012 L.A. Screenings. The show, starring Anne Heche, follows a housewife who believes she is a prophet. Premiered May 23.
- Fox’s comedy The Goodwin Games (distributed by Twentieth Century Fox) was also introduced at last year’s L.A. Screenings. From the creators of How I Met Your Mother, the sitcom follows three siblings with very different lives return home after their father’s death and are put through a series of tests and trials to win his inheritance. Premiered May 20.
- NBC drama Crossing Lines (distributed by Tandem) follows an elite task force — made up of members across countries that have been handpicked for their special skills — whose job it is to keep international crime down across the European Union. Premieres June 23.
- Fox’s Saturday night late-night animation block Animation Domination High-Def will include four series: Axe Cop, about a vigilante superhero and his partner who bring justice to bad guys; High School USA, about a group of super positive millennial students; Golan the Insatiable, the story of a mighty godlord from an alternate universe who arrives in a small town, where his only friend is a 10-year-old goth girl; and Lucas Bros. Moving Co., based on the stand-up comedy of identical twin brothers Kenny and Keith Lucas. Premieres July 27.
Looking ahead to Summer 2014, Fox has announced the return of Jack Bauer, of 24 fame, in 24: Live Another Day. The 12-episode series is being internationally distributed by Twentieth Century Fox.