With NBC and FOX upfronts out of the way, it’s time for ABC to show us what they have in store for the 2012-13 television season. The alphabet network ordered 10 new shows with six of them being dramas and four comedies. Given “Revenge” was a hit this season, it’s only natural they try to duplicate it with similar type fare. They definitely have a couple of promising new dramas that could become breakout hits.

The biggest change in ABC’s new schedule is the shuffling of three shows which previously aired on Wednesday. The aforementioned “Revenge” will move to Sunday and occupy “Desperate Housewives” former slot. Two comedies which followed “Modern Family” this season, will now kick off ABC’s brand new two hour comedy block on Tuesday. Hopefully, “Happy Endings” and “Don’t Trust The B- In Apartment 23” survive without a strong lead-in.

Before we get to the new shows, let’s quickly run down the programs that won’t be returning. They are “Desperate Housewives” (Final Season), “Charlie’s Angels”, “Man Up!”, “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition”, “Work It”, “Cougar Town” (MOVES TO TBS), “GCB”, “Pan Am”, “Missing” and “The River”. The only one I’ll truly miss is “GCB“. It was getting better with each episode and wished the network gave it another shot.

ABC New Dramas (2012-2013)

After years of dramedy type fair on Sunday nights with “Desperate Housewives”, “Brothers & Sisters” and “GCB” (which I’m still bitter about), the alphabet network decided to overall the night into a darker more mystical one. Given the success of “Once Upon a Time” and the newly-relocated “Revenge”, this supernatural series should complement the two and form a perfect trifecta. Plus, it stars Vanessa Williams. Glad we didn’t have to kiss her good-bye after Housewives went off the air. Also noteworthy are Terry O’Quinn and Rachael Taylor who were arguably the best things from their former series- “Lost” and “Charlie’s Angels”. “666 Park Avenue” should be a solid performer for ABC.

666 Park Avenue

At the ominous address of 666 Park Avenue, anything you desire can be yours. Everyone has needs, desires and ambition. For the residents of The Drake, these will all be met, courtesy of the building’s mysterious owner, Gavin Doran (Terry O’Quinn). But every Faustian contract comes with a price. When Jane Van Veen (Rachael Taylor) and Henry Martin (Dave Annable), an idealistic young couple from the Midwest, are offered the opportunity to manage the historic building, they not only fall prey to the machinations of Doran and his mysterious wife, Olivia (Vanessa Williams), but unwittingly begin to experience the shadowy, supernatural forces within the building that imprison and endanger the lives of the residents inside. Sexy, seductive and inviting, The Drake maintains a dark hold over all of its residents, tempting them through their ambitions and desires, in this chilling new drama that’s home to an epic struggle of good versus evil.

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I don’t understand why ABC would include this in their upfronts considering it’s not scheduled to premiere until May 2013. That’s right. Over a year from now. While I’ll watch anything Alyssa Milano does and a sucker for soapy dramas, I’m not at all intrigued by this “Sex and the Desperate Housewives” mashup. It’s another instance of a network trying to translate a popular UK series for American viewers. Remember MTV’s “Skins” fiasco? Enough said.

Welcome to a provocative and thrilling drama about the scandalous lives of a sexy and sassy group of four girlfriends, each on her own path to self-discovery, as they brave the turbulent journey together.

Meet Savi (Alyssa Milano), a successful career woman working toward the next phase in her life — both professional and personal — simultaneously bucking for partner at her law firm while she and her husband, Harry (Brett Tucker), try to start a family of their own. Savi’s free-spirited and capricious baby sister, Josselyn (Jes Macallan), couldn’t be more different – living single, serial dating and partying, and regularly leaning on her big sister along the way. Their common best friend, April (Rochelle Aytes), a recent widow and mother of two, is rebuilding her life after tragedy and learning to move forward, with the support and guidance of her closest girlfriends. And friend Karen (Yunjin Kim), a successful therapist with her own practice, reconnects with the girls after her involvement in a complicated relationship with a patient goes far too deep.

“Mistresses” is a salacious new drama about a group of friends caught in storms of excitement and self-discovery, secrecy and betrayal, and bound by the complex relationships they’ve created.

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Last Resort

As much as I love Scott Speedman, you couldn’t pay me enough to watch this series. Watching a bunch of people in a submarine only to flee to an island after their country betrays them is the last thing I want to see.

500 feet beneath the ocean’s surface, the U.S. ballistic missile submarine Colorado receive their orders. Over a radio channel, designed only to be used if their Homeland has been wiped out, they’re told to fire nuclear weapons at Pakistan.

Captain Marcus Chaplin (Andre Braugher) demands confirmation of the orders only to be unceremoniously relieved of duty by the White House. XO Sam Kendal (Scott Speedman) finds himself suddenly in charge of the submarine and facing the same difficult decision. When he also refuses to fire without confirmation of the orders, the Colorado is targeted, fired upon, and hit. The submarine and its crew find themselves crippled on the ocean floor, declared rogue enemies of their own country. Now, with nowhere left to turn, Chaplin and Kendal take the sub on the run and bring the men and women of the Colorado to an exotic island. Here they will find refuge, romance and a chance at a new life, even as they try to clear their names and get home.

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With country music more popular than ever, this soap opera-like series set in Nashville should do gangbusters. Plus, it received the plum spot of following “Modern Family” on Wednesday nights. “Revenge” did well last year in the same time slot. Another huge factor for the show to succeed is its very appealing leading lady. Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights & American Horror Story) is one hot commodity these days. I expect “Nashville” to be a multi-platinum hit for ABC.

Chart-topping Rayna James (Connie Britton) is a country legend who’s had a career any singer would envy, though lately her popularity is starting to wane. Fans still line up to get her autograph, but she’s not packing the arenas like she used to. Rayna’s record label thinks a concert tour, opening for up-and-comer Juliette Barnes (Hayden Panettiere), the young and sexy future of country music, is just what Rayna needs. But scheming Juliette can’t wait to steal Rayna’s spotlight. Sharing a stage with that disrespectful, untalented, little vixen is the last thing Rayna wants to do, which sets up a power struggle for popularity. Could the undiscovered songwriting talent of Scarlett O’Connor (Clare Bowen) be the key to helping Rayna resurrect her career?

Complicating matters, Rayna’s wealthy but estranged father, Lamar Hampton (Powers Boothe), is a powerful force in business, Tennessee politics, and the lives of his two grown daughters. His drive for power results in a scheme to back Rayna’s handsome husband, Teddy, in a run for Mayor of Nashville, against Rayna’s wishes.

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Red Widow

The fact this show doesn’t even have a tentative air date doesn’t bode well in terms of support from the network. Personally, I don’t blame ABC. The premise isn’t engaging at all and it comes from the “Twilight” screenwriters. And we all know what a literary masterpiece that is. This show is as DOA as the show’s lead character’s husband.

When Marta Walraven’s (Radha Mitchell) husband is brutally murdered, her first instinct is to protect her three young children. Her husband’s business partners – Irwin Petrova (Wil Traval), Marta’s scheming and untrustworthy brother, and Mike Tomlin (Lee Tergesen) — were involved in an illegal drug business deal with rival gangsters, and Marta’s husband paid the ultimate price. She already knows the violent world of organized crime; her father, Andrei Petrova (Rade Sherbedzija), and loyal bodyguard Luther (Luke Goss) are gangsters too. She and her sister Kat (Jaime Ray Newman) had always wished for a safer life without bloodshed and fear. For a while Marta lived happily as a stay at home housewife in San Marta’s cooperation, FBI Agent James Ramos (Mido Hamada) now promises justice.

Marta discovers a tenacity she never knew she had, and takes on the gangsters and the FBI to unveil the truth about her husband’s death. As she digs into this dark underworld, she’ll test her own strength, relying on her resourcefulness, determination and family ties like never before. To get out of this mob, she needs to beat the bad guys at their own deadly game.

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Zero Hour

Truthfully, I wasn’t expecting to be riveted… but surprisingly I was. It’s a spookier “National Treasure” complete with mystical forces. I love a good mystery and this one looks like an edge of your seat type series. Most likely, we’ll have to wait til midseason to catch the premiere.

As the publisher of a paranormal enthusiast magazine, Modern Skeptic, Hank Galliston has spent his career following clues, debunking myths and solving conspiracies. A confessed paranormal junkie, his motto is “logic is the compass.” But when his beautiful wife, Laila (Jacinda Barrett), is abducted from her antique clock shop, Hank gets pulled into one of the most compelling mysteries in human history, stretching around the world and back centuries.

Contained in one of his wife’s clocks is a treasure map, and what it leads to could be cataclysmic. Now it’s up to Hank to decipher the symbols and unlock the secrets of the map, while ensuring the answers don’t fall into the wrong hands – a man they call White Vincent (Michael Nyqvist). With his two young associates, Rachel (Addison Timlin) and Arron (Scott Michael Foster), in tow, along with Becca Riley, a sexy FBI agent (Carmen Ejogo), Hank will lead them on a breathless race against the clock to find his wife and save humanity.

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ABC New Comedies (2012-2013)

The Neighbors

It’s a little “3rd Rock From The Sun” and that’s why I like it. Obviously, the network loves it too. Why else would it give it the slot right after “Modern Family”? It’s a quirky family friendly comedy that should appeal to a wide range of viewers. Love that all the aliens are named after famous athletes.

How well do you know your neighbors?

Meet the Weavers, Debbie (Jami Gertz) and Marty (Lenny Venito). Marty, in hopes of providing a better life for his wife and three kids, recently bought a home in Hidden Hills, a gated New Jersey townhome community with its own golf course. Hidden Hills is so exclusive that a house hasn’t come on the market in 10 years. But one finally did and the Weavers got it!

It’s clear from day one that the residents of Hidden Hills are a little different. For starters, their new neighbors all have pro-athlete names like Reggie Jackson (Tim Jo), Jackie Joyner-Kersee (Toks Olagundoye), Dick Butkis (Ian Patrick) and Larry Bird (Simon Templeman). Over dinner, Marty and his family discover that their neighbors receive nourishment through their eyes by reading books, rather than eating. The Weavers soon learn that the entire community is comprised of aliens from Zabvron, where the men bear children and everyone cries green goo from their ears.

The Zabvronians have been stationed on Earth for the past 10 years, disguised as humans, awaiting instructions from home, and the Weavers are the first humans they’ve had the opportunity to know. As it turns out, the pressures of marriage and Parenthood are not exclusive to planet Earth. Two worlds will collide with hilarious consequences as everyone discovers they can “totally relate” and learn a lot from each other.

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Malibu Country

Sure, it’s a little cheesy, but I’m oddly intrigued by this multi-camera comedy. It marks the sitcom comeback of Reba who previously starred in a WB sitcom years ago. Country music fans are among the most loyal and I expect they’ll support Ms. Reba. With a Friday night slot, it’ll definitely need it.

When Reba Gallagher (Reba) discovers that her husband, Bobby, (Jeffrey Nordling) a country music legend, has a cheatin’ heart, her world is turned upside down. Reba dreamt of becoming a country star herself, but put her career on hold to raise a family. Now she’s questioning all of that, big-time. With the ink on her divorce barely dry, Reba packs up her sharp-tongued mother, Lillie May (Lily Tomlin), her two kids and the U-Haul and heads for sunny California to begin a new chapter. Leaving Nashville in the rear view, they start over at their Malibu residence — the last remaining asset they have. Reba gets to know her new open and loving neighbor Kim (Sara Rue) and her son, Sage, but also discovers that relocation to Southern California is going to be quite an adjustment for a traditional southern belle: the West Coast seems like the polar opposite of Music City, and Reba feels like an outsider. Still, with the support of her family she sets about finding her voice, jump-starting her music career with the help of her new music agent, Geoffrey (Jai Rodriguez), and embracing this chance to begin again.

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How to Live With Your Parents for the Rest of Your Life

Out of the four new comedies, this is the weakest IMHO. Sure, Reba’s “Country Malibu” is cheesier but this Sarah Chalke vehicle doesn’t provide any romance nor comedy. Obviously, ABC believes in it since it’s using this sitcom to launch it’s Tuesday 2-hour comedy block. Hopefully, it doesn’t drive viewers away from the shows following it, especially “Happy Endings” and “Don’t Trust The B- in Apartment 23”.

Polly (Sarah Chalke) is a single mom who’s been divorced for almost a year. The transition wasn’t easy for her, especially in this economy. So, like a lot of young people living in this new reality, she and her daughter, Natalie (Rachel Eggleston), have moved back home with her eccentric parents, Elaine (Elizabeth Perkins) and Max (Brad Garrett). But Polly and her parents look at life through two different lenses. Polly’s too uptight. Her parents are too laid back. Polly’s conservative when it comes to dating (no action, whatsoever), while her parents are still sexually adventurous. They think Polly turned out okay, so what’s the big deal? Well, they say it takes a village to raise a child…and in Polly’s case, this village is on fire. But with help from her best friend Gregg (Orlando Jones), her lovable yet irresponsible ex-husband Julian (Jon Dore) and her cool and fun assistant Jenn (Rebecca Delgado Smith) Polly takes her first steps toward getting a life, starting with a social one.

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The Family Tools

Not the best new sitcom, nor is it the worst. I predict four episodes before it’s officially canceled.

Mixing family with business is never easy, and Jack Shea (Kyle Bornheimer) is about to learn that lesson the hard way. When Jack’s father, Tony (J.K. Simmons), has a heart attack and is forced to hand over the keys to his beloved handyman business, Jack is eager to finally step up and make his father proud. Unfortunately Jack’s past career efforts have been less than stellar, so everyone seems to be waiting for him to fail. His new job isn’t made any easier by Tony’s rebellious, troublemaker assistant, Darren (Edi Gathegi), and Darren’s flirtatious sister, Liz (Danielle Nicolet), who works at the local hardware store. Yet with the support of his Aunt Terry (Leah Remini) and his oddball yet endearing cousin Mason (Johnny Pemberton), Jack Shea may just find his true calling right at home.

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2012 Fall Upfronts: Which ABC Shows Have The Most Potential?

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ABC Fall/Midseason 2012-13 Schedule

New shows in italics


  • 8 pm – Dancing with the Stars / The Bachelor (midseason)
  • 10 pm – Castle


  • 8 pm – Dancing with the Stars the Results Show
  • 9 pm – Happy Endings
  • 9:30 pm – Don’t Trust The B—- in Apartment 23
  • 10 pm – Private Practice

In January

  • 8:30 pm – THE FAMILY TOOLS


  • 8 pm – The Middle
  • 8:30 pm – Suburgatory
  • 9 pm – Modern Family
  • 9:30 pm – THE NEIGHBORS
  • 10 pm – NASHVILLE


  • 8 pm – LAST RESORT
  • 9 pm – Grey’s Anatomy
  • 10 pm – Scandal


  • 8 pm – Shark Tank
  • 9 pm – Primetime: What Would You Do?
  • 10 pm – 20/20

In November

  • 8 pm – Last Man Standing
  • 8:30 pm – MALIBU COUNTRY
  • 9 pm – Shark Tank
  • 10 pm – 20/20


  • 8 pm – Saturday Night College Football


  • 7 pm – America’s Funniest Home Videos
  • 8 pm – Once Upon A Time
  • 9 pm – Revenge
  • 10 pm – 666 PARK AVENUE