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Gaywatch: Fall TV Preview 2011

Gaywatch: Fall TV Preview 2011

By Tim Parks 

Well, well, well we have made it through the dog days of Summer TV viewing, and the new Fall schedule brings with it a nice respite from the dregs of low-rent viewing options for the past few months, without a moment to spare!

I was this close to watching Animal Planet’s “Hillbilly Handfishin’,” if only because I misunderstood the concept and thought the cable channel had decided to literally throw gay viewers a bone, and having never been to the South, I understandably thought it was code for something naughty. Actually, I did watch a clip of it, and my assessment isn’t really that far off the mark, y’all.

Anyhoo, there are a plethora of upcoming premieres, while not adding many new LGBT characters to the prime time landscape, these new inclusions will most definitely will hold viewers’ attention. So, let’s take a gander at which shows will attempt to do just that, shall we? Uh, that was rhetorical! Oh, and in the spirit of fairness, we’ll go alphabetically by network, so there!

ABC

ABC must have its hopes set high that its update of “Charlie’s Angels” won’t be cancelled, like so many remakes before it. Um, they ain’t the only ones, as I am sure that gay men of a certain age spent many an afternoon solving crimes with Barbie dolls standing in for Farrah Fawcett-Majors, Jaclyn Smith and Kate Jackson. Oh really…I’m the only one? Well, the gay cheese stands alone, apparently.

The new trio of crime fighting babes will not be pulled from their hazardous duties as policewomen, ala the original (really, Cheryl Ladd was answering the phone that hard?), and will now be working for the mysterious Charles Townsend in order to redeem themselves. The new cast includes Minka Kelly as a street racer, Rachael Taylor as a master thief, Annie Ilonzeh as a dirty cop, and Ramon Rodriguez as hot tamale Bosley. Yes, you read that right. Airs Thursdays at 8PM, beginning on September 22.

“Once Upon A Time” started off many an old fashioned fairy tale, while its modern day equivalent in our community begins with, “Girl…” The fantasy series centers around an evil witch (are there any other kind, really?) who imprisons fairy tale characters in a real-world town.

Reportedly, one of the female characters may be the offspring of Snow White and Prince Charming, which at last answers the first Disney princess’ hopes about what would happen someday when her prince would, well, you get the gist. Airs Sundays at 8PM, beginning on October 23.

While “Pan-Am” is described as a “period piece,” it’s more about flying the friendly skies in the swingin’ ‘60s, rather than an hour-long infomercial about some new fangled kind of feminine hygiene product.

The series stars Christina Ricci as flight attendant Maggie, which is a good thing for passengers on the airliner, seeing as either her large forehead or ample bosom can be used as flotation devices. Airs Sundays at 10PM, beginning on September 25.

Those who remember the heydey of primetime soaps (wish I had been around then) and are in the market for something that is both dishy and soapy, needn’t look any further than “Revenge.” No, not on me for saying I wasn’t around to see the ‘8os soaps…we all know I am one old dude. This series stars Emily VanCamp as Emily Thorne, and TV viewers will remember her as the artsist formerly known as Becca on “Brothers & Sisters,” (best to say it like her former TV mom Patricia Wettig, who had a strange approach to her “craft,” and most times sounded like she needed to get a Polident grip. So it would sound like this, “Becca,” if you added a clack clack sound at the end, got it?).

Well, her name is actually Amanda Clarke, and she comes back to the Hamptoms to exact, um, “Revenge” (duh!) on the people who caused her father to go into the pokey (that’s a slang term for prison, and also for what happens after it’s lights out, new fish! ) and causes his death and destruction to her family unit (tee hee, I said unit). She locks Thorne horns with Madeleine Stowe’s Victoria Grayson, who proves to be a worthy opponent and a beeyatch of the highest magnitude. Good, there’s finally a role model for me to emulate on TV. Whoops, too late. Airs Wednesdays at 10, beginning on September 21.   

CBS

Hunky Hollywood leading man, Patrick Wilson, who recently starred in the aptly titled horror movie Insidious (please, the scariest part was that I ponied up cash for a movie ticket to this letdow, and you can read my review on here), will be headlining “A Gifted Man.”

The plot revolves around a prominent, and very self-absorbed, surgeon who is visited by his dead wife’s ghost, which causes him begin to make changes in his life in this supernatural drama. Sounds a bit more frightening than the aforementioned “scary” movie he was in…eek, a nagging wife from beyond the grave! Airs Fridays at 8PM, beginning on September 23. 

CW

“Ringer” brings Sarah Michelle Gellar back to the prime time fold; guess there won’t be a third Scooby-Doo movie, shoot! But, the actress formerly known as “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” will be pulling double duty as sisters Bridget Cafferty and Siobhan Martin, in a plotline which involves one sibling pretending to be the other one who is on the lam.

If only they were identical cousins, then this show would be an updated thriller version of the ’60s sitcom “The Patty Duke Show;” hmm, I wonder which one would lose control over a, ahem, hot dog? Airs Tuesdays at 9PM, beginning on September 13.

Fox

Simon Cowell will once again be sitting in judgment, and, no, this does not necessarily make him an honorary gay man, since his tight t-shirt look is so 2000 late. But, by bringing his across the pond singing competition, “The X-Factor” to American shores, he is more than likely to keep his gay fan base happy by re-teaming with former “American Idol” cohort Paula Abdul, our generation’s answer to Judy Garland; which is not based on her singing merit, but her fondness for “vitamins.”

And, music producer L.A. Reid and Pussycat Dolls lead singer, Nicole Scherzinger round out the judges’ dais, after it was determined that former cast member (and U.K. pop star) Cheryl Cole was out, because U.S. audiences may have trouble understanding her British accent. I guess that Paula’s assessments of the singers will not come complete with subtitles then? Pity. Airs Wednesdays at 8PM, beginning on September 21.

The only new official gay kids on the block are animated, and aren’t children at all, but a couple of gay dads raising their precocious offspring in “Allen Gregory.” The animated world hasn’t seen characters this gay since the heyday of cartoons such as Snagglepuss. Hey, have you ever noticed that “Project Runway” host Tim Gunn sounds just like the pink lion? Airs on Sunday nights (time TBD), beginning on October 30.

LOGO

Get ready for the first spin-off of LOGO’s “The A-List: New York,” as a new group of “Housewives with Balls” go west to “The A-List: Dallas,” to paraphrase the Village People’s answer to GPS in the ’70s.

The cast includes Phillip, a 23-year-old gossip, but you didn’t hear that from me, because I’m not one to gossip. Hey, Miss Jenkins! Beau is an overachieving fashion photographer, while Chase is a serial dater; and if it was of the breakfast variety, he would be looking for the male equivalent of Fruit Loops, ok? James is a trust fund baby, and Levi is seen as this group’s Austin (aka “The Bad Boy”), even though the show is filmed in Dallas. I did not know you could actually make a pun out of the state of Texas! Go figure! Also along for the reality show ride is Ashley, a photographer/model/cheerleading coach…I thought Beau was the overachiever of the show? Airs Mondays at 10 PM, beginning on October 3.

NBC

While there are plenty of new offerings from the Peacock Network ( I wanna see your Peacock, cock, cock as Katy Perry sings on her track, hang on it was on the tip of my tongue. Dammit, I can’t think of it),  including Eddie Cibrian getting gainful employment at “The Playboy Club” (phew, now he can afford to buy wife LeAnn Rimes a sandwich, now if he can only get her to eat it! She’s a tad undernourished, I’m just sayin’!), there is only one show that I will be telling y’all to tune into.

And, what show might that be? Why, it’s “Chelsea Lately” round table regular Whitney Cummings in her new cleverly titled sitcom, “Whitney,” which you may have mistaken as a reality TV comeback (because the music one went so well – do I need to add a just kidding? Yeah, didn’t think so) for Whitney Houston on title value alone. No, silly, that would be called “Being Without Bobby Brown.”

But this Whitney has a penchant for being a hilarious spitfire, who is always a pitch perfect performer. Too bad the same can’t be said for the other Whitney. Airs Thursdays at 9:30 PM, beginning on September 22.

Cut. Print. That’s A Wrap!

So there you have it, just a mere smattering of what Fall TV has to offer audiences, and let’s keep our fingers crossed that the bumper crop of new shows won’t be a bitter harvest of disappointment. Until next time, that’s all of the news that’s fit to print.

About timparksmediaho

I am a self professed Media Ho, which is the nicer version of being a Media Whore. My mother actually inspired me to come up with the term

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