The last of the major networks to announce its upcoming slate of new shows was the little network that couldn’t could. Unlike CBS, where barely any changes occurred, the CW took a completely different route. The network, shockingly, flipped their entire schedule around, leaving only one series remaining in their current time slot- “The Vampire Diaries” on Thursday nights at 8pm. I guess, when you’re perpetually in last place, you have to do something drastic.

The biggest change by far has to be “America’s Next Top Model” being scuttled to Friday nights. That decision will either become a brilliant strategic move or the nail in the coffin for the veteran modeling competition. The Tyra Banks show will now be paired up with “Nikita“. Thank the television gods for saving that show. I love the Maggie Q-led show. Definitely underrated.

Typically, the CW is known for being the go-to network for teenage girls, but the television execs want to change that. Their brand new shows are more aimed at attracting a diverse audience. Sure, there’s the “Carrie Diaries“, but “Cult” and “Arrow” are definitely a departure for them. But before we check out the shows, let’s have a moment of silence for the canceled ones. So long, “H8R”, “One Tree Hill” (Final Season), “The Secret Circle” and “Ringer”. I’ll definitely miss the last one. The Sarah Michelle Gellar series got off to a slow start but picked up steam in the end.

The CW New Dramas (2012-2013)

Arrow

“Smallville” was a huge hit for CW/WB years, so it only makes sense they go the superhero route again. Taking on the lead role is the super sexy Stephen Amell who’s been previously featured in my weekly Man Crush series. I always knew he was hot, but watching him in the trailer made me fall in lust with him all over again. That scene where he’s doing pull-ups is incredibly hot. Typically, this type of show wouldn’t appeal to me, but if Amell is shirtless on a weekly basis, consider me a loyal viewer.

After a violent shipwreck, billionaire playboy Oliver Queen was missing and presumed dead for five years before being discovered alive on a remote island in the Pacific. When he returns home to Starling City, his devoted mother Moira, much-beloved sister Thea, and best friend Tommy welcome him home, but they sense Oliver has been changed by his ordeal on the island. While Oliver hides the truth about the man he’s become, he desperately wants to make amends for the actions he took as the boy he was. Most particularly, he seeks reconciliation with his former girlfriend, Laurel Lance. As Oliver reconnects with those closest to him, he secretly creates the persona of Arrow – a vigilante – to right the wrongs of his family, fight the ills of society, and restore Starling City to its former glory. By day, Oliver plays the role of a wealthy, carefree and careless philanderer he used to be – flanked by his devoted chauffeur/bodyguard, John Diggle – while carefully concealing the secret identity he turns to under cover of darkness. However, Laurel’s father, Detective Quentin Lance, is determined to arrest the vigilante operating in his city. Meanwhile, Oliver’s own mother, Moira, knows much more about the deadly shipwreck than she has let on – and is more ruthless than he could ever imagine.

Beauty and the Beast

With “Once Upon A Time” being a huge hit for ABC this season, naturally the CW wanted to do a fairy tale series of their own. Once again, the tale as old as time, is being retold for television viewers. This time around, Kristin Kruek takes on the role of the “Beauty”. While I enjoyed the Disney movie, I don’t think a weekly series based on the characters will hold my attention. Definitely a pass for me.

Detective Catherine Chandler is a smart, no-nonsense homicide detective. Several years earlier, Catherine witnessed the murder of her mother at the hands of two gunmen. Catherine would have been killed too, but someone – or something – saved her. No one has ever believed her, but she knows it wasn’t an animal that attacked the assassins…it was human. Years have passed, and Catherine is a strong, confident, capable police officer, working alongside her equally talented partner, Tess. While investigating a murder, Catherine discovers a clue that leads her to a handsome doctor named Vincent Keller, who was reportedly killed by enemy fire while serving in Afghanistan in 2002. Catherine learns that Vincent is actually still alive and that it was he who saved her many years before. For mysterious reasons that have forced him to live outside of traditional society, Vincent has been in hiding for the past 10 years to guard his secret – when he is enraged, he becomes a terrifying beast, unable to control his super-strength and heightened senses. Catherine agrees to protect his identity in return for any insight he may have into her mother’s murder. Thus begins a complex relationship between Catherine and Vincent, who are powerfully drawn to each other yet understand that their connection is extremely dangerous for both of them.

Emily Owens, M.D.

My first impression of the show is it’s “Ally McBeal” meets “Grey’s Anatomy”. It seems cute enough, but don’t think it’ll be must-see television. I’ll give it a shot though, solely on the basis, Justin Hartley is starring in the series. He’s so fine and will look only hotter in scrubs. YUM. Coincidentally enough, Hartley played the Green Arrow in the “Smallville”. I wonder if this role was the CW’s consolation prize to Hartley for not landing the “Arrow” series.

At long last, Emily Owens feels like she is an actual grown-up. She can finally put her high school days as the geeky-girl-with-flop-sweats behind her; she’s graduated from medical school and is now a first-year intern at Denver Memorial Hospital, where she’ll have the chance to work with world-famous cardiologist Dr. Gina Beckett – and where, not-so-coincidentally, her med-school crush Will Rider is also an intern. So why does everyone keep warning her that the hospital is just like high school? Emily soon finds out the hard way – her high school nemesis, the gorgeous, popular Cassandra Kopelson, is also just starting out at Denver Memorial, and it seems like they’re rivals all over again – not only as surgical interns, but for Will’s attention. Fellow intern Tyra Granger warns Emily that the cliques at Denver Memorial are all too familiar: the jocks have become orthopedic surgeons; the mean girls are in plastics; the rebels are in the ER, and Tyra has her own Awkward place as the principal’s kid – her father is the chief resident. Emily’s the new kid all over again, and it’s just as Awkward as high school. Only this time around, Emily will have to balance the personal and emotional turmoil of social politics with the high-stakes world of life-and-death medical decisions. At least she has fellow intern Tyra and nerdy-but-cute resident Micah, to count on as friends. Emily is growing to realize that although she may be a geek, she may also grow to be a great doctor, flop sweats and all.

The CW Fall 2012-13 Schedule

New shows in italics

Monday

  • 8 pm – 90210
  • 9 pm – Gossip Girl / THE CARRIE DIARIES (midseason)

Tuesday

  • 8 pm – Hart Of Dixie
  • 9 pm – EMILY OWENS, M.D.

Wednesday

  • 8 pm – ARROW
  • 9 pm – Supernatural

Thursday

  • 8 pm – The Vampire Diaries
  • 9 pm – BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

Friday

  • 8 pm – America’s Next Top Model
  • 9 pm – Nikita

The CW Midseason (2012-2013)

I have to say, I was surprised that the CW decided to wait til midseason to launch its much-hyped “Sex and the City” prequel. Upon further reflection, it’s actually a sound move. With “Gossip Girl” ending in the Fall, people wanting their Manhattan fix in January can tune in to watch a teenage Carrie Bradshaw on “The Carrie Diaries”. As much as I love the SATC series, this one has trainwreck written all over it. It’s always risky to toy with a beloved and iconic character. That said, I’ll still tune in and give it a couple of episodes.

The Carrie Diaries

It’s 1984, and life isn’t easy for 16-year-old Carrie Bradshaw. Since their mother passed away, Carrie’s younger sister Dorritt is more rebellious than ever, and their father Tom is overwhelmed with the responsibility of suddenly having to care for two teenage girls on his own. Carrie’s friends – sweet, geeky Mouse, sarcastic and self-assured Maggie and sensitive Walt – make life bearable, but a suburban life in Connecticut isn’t doing much to take her mind off her troubles. And even though the arrival of a sexy new transfer student named Sebastian brings some excitement to Carrie’s world, she is struggling to move on from her grief. So when Tom offers Carrie the chance to intern at a law firm in Manhattan, she leaps at the chance. Carrie’s eyes are opened wide at the glamour and grit of New York City – and when she meets Larissa, the style editor for Interview magazine, she’s inspired by the club culture and unique individuals that make up Larissa’s world. Carrie’s friends and family may have a big place in her heart, but she’s fallen in love for the first time with the most important man in her life – Manhattan.

Cult

Investigative journalist Jeff Sefton has learned to laugh off his brother Nate’s relentless string of obsessions, especially his latest rant that a hit TV show intends to harm him. However, when his brother mysteriously disappears, Jeff takes Nate’s paranoia seriously, and in the process uncovers the dark underworld of the TV show “Cult” and its rabid fans. The only person who seems willing to help Jeff with his investigation is Skye, a young research assistant for “Cult,” who has also started to grow suspicious of the increasingly dark happenings surrounding the show. The fictitious show, centered on the cat-and-mouse game between charismatic cult leader Billy Grimm and LAPD detective Kelly Collins, has become an obsession for its viewers – and now some of its devotees seem to be taking their fixation to deadly extremes in the real world. As Jeff and Skye dig deeper into the fan world, they discover that the gruesome plot twists on television are much more than fantasy for some very unfortunate people. The hardcore fans of “Cult” would kill to see what happens next…

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

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