“No Alarms and No Surprises”
ABC 2008-2009 Fall Schedule
Of all of the major networks, one could say that ABC is playing it safest when it comes to this year’s upfronts. The only drama pilot to make it onto their fall schedule is one that was technically completed for last season’s pilot group, and they are the network who held back the most new shows from last fall to be relaunched with gusto when September rolls around.
The result is a schedule that is eerily similar to the one that we saw this past year, which saw decent success although certainly not to the levels that they experienced in years previous. After a year of success facing off against CSI, Grey’s Anatomy has seen post-strike ratings tumble, and shows like Desperate Housewives and Ugly Betty are fading if not quite to levels that are dangerous to their health and stability on the network.
So, let’s take a look at the schedule, and see which shows are going to make a splash this time around, plus finally getting confirmation of the worst kept secret of the year’s upfronts.
“Piece of My Heart”
May 1st, 2008
It’s certain: we have missed Addison Montgomery. I never got into Private Practice, a show that I found too preachy and too talkative for its own good (A comment that Addison makes when trying to discern things from glances and eyebrow raises instead of the long-winded speeches of LA). This is a show that, for too long, has been decipherable: these characters have been acting out of character, scrambling around and struggling without really coming out and saying it.
Well, they’re coming out and saying it now: often it only takes one new influence for things to perk up, and Addison Montgomery is that character. It’s a cheap plot device on the surface, sure, but we create a sense of drama that we haven’t seen in a year. Something about her arrival, and the surgeries that surround it, influences our characters across the board. She is the person that they can talk to, someone who won’t be around for the drama and who wants to know how things will change.
The result is some great character turns, some drama being drawn from humanity and not chaos, and an emotionally charged hour of television.