On the final day of panels for the Television Critics Association press tour, NBC previewed some of its new shows coming this Fall. The network has the Jekyll and Hyde spy drama My Own Worst Enemy starring Christian Slater, the Australian-imported comedy Kath and Kim, and the revised Knight Rider.
The network’s one other new scripted series, Crusoe, was not in attendance due to filming in South Africa, though a preview video for the show was quite inspiring, making it look a bit like a TV version of Pirates of the Caribbean.
My Own Worst Enemy
NBC finally aired clips from this highly anticipated show, and the result is an Alias-style impressive spy show with action and human drama intermingled. The premise was explained further that Christian Slater’s normal character Henry has an implant that is triggered by a secretive government organization to turn him into a violent secret agent. In the pilot, the implant begins to malfunction, blending the two.
Creator Jason Smilovic further explained that the Christian Slater character was originally Edward, a military man who suffers a tragedy and agrees to undergo an experiment that creates the boring, average Henry. Also, the Edward version is aware of Henry, but not the other way around at first. There will be standalone missions for each week in addition to the larger story arc, a lesson Smilovic learned from his previous series Kidnapped.
Kath and Kim
NBC’s newest comedy, centers on a fun-loving mom (Molly Shannon) with a newfound love life and her spoiled, Britney Spears-esque daughter (Selma Blair) who moves back in with her mom after the failure of her six-week-long marriage. The TCA panel for Kath and Kim had plenty of laughs and succeeded on one important front: proving Selma Blair is actually funny.
The actress best known for her lesbian kiss in Cruel Intentions answered a question about whether she’ll be wearing a wig for the series with a long-winded and hilarious monologue about the finer points of wig vs. extensions. She continued on a tangent about what types of wigs she would wear because she has a monkey face, explaining that all people are either monkey-faced or rat-faced.
However, the panel also dismissed a rather legitimate question about the age difference between the two leads. Despite playing mother and daughter, Shannon and Blair are only separated in age by 7 years. At first Blair laughed it off as acting, joking that Dakota Fanning was the producers’ first choice, adding “If you squint really hard and put Vaseline on your eyeballs when you watch, I look really young.” The cast went on to explain that the relationship is more akin to best friends than mother/daughter, so the age gap isn’t such a big deal.
The Knight Rider series will be quite different and more evolved than the two-hour TV movie. The differences begin first with showrunner Gary Scott Thompson (who previously created Las Vegas and The Fast and the Furious), who was given carte blanche to fabricate his own world. Though the basic characters from the movie will remain, certain character backstories will change. Mostly, the lesbian subplot with Sydney Tamiia Poitier‘s character introduced in the movie will possibly be altered.
There are also new characters who will help to maintain the car by working in what Thompson calls the KITT Cave. Thompson added that he has a long-term mythology plan for the series through at least two seasons which is based on the origins of KITT. He posed one question that he promises to answer throughout the series: “Why would you put artificial intelligence into a car?” Finally, despite rumors on the Internet, there are no plans for Thompson to bring characters from Las Vegas onto Knight Rider.
CBS’ New Fall Shows
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Preview of CW’s Sunday Night Lineup
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Friday Night Lights Season 3
Bravo Orders More Top Chef and Real Housewives
Sci Fi’s BSG Prequel Caprica
Chuck Season 2
Amy Poehler’s New Show, More SNL, Leno’s Final Show
-John Kubicek, BuddyTV Senior Writer
(Image courtesy of NBC)