The CW

Photo by Tom Heinrich

While Gal Gadot is finally bringing Wonder Woman to the big screen in her upcoming appearance in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel sequel, the Amazonian princess has had a hell of a time making it to television. NBC’s disaster of an effort starring a game Adrianne Palicki never survived pilot phase, and it appears now that the CW’s offering, Amazon, is a no go, according to CW president Mark Pedowitz.

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reboot tales from the darkside

Man lives in the sunlit world of what he believes to be reality. But, there is, unseen by most, an underworld, a place that is just as real, but not as brightly lit. A darkside.” Those words were first heard emanating from televisions way back in 1984 when Tales From the Darkside made its premiere in syndication. Created after the success of Creepshow by George Romero and Laurel Entertainment, the show was an anthology series in the vein of Tales From the Crypt or The Twilight Zone with one story per episode. Unlike those and most other similar shows though, this one featured no host (human or puppet). They were usually horror-themed but often featured a somewhat silly or light-hearted tone. There were ninety episodes in total across four seasons, and some of them came from recognizable names including Stephen King, Robert Bloch, and Charles L. Grant. (And Jodie Foster even directed an episode!) Per Deadline, the series is getting a reboot on the CW, and it’s coming with some big guns behind the scenes. Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci will be executive producing, and while the knee-jerk reaction to their names may be one of disappointment I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a fan of their wonderfully goofy Fox hit Sleepy Hollow. The better news though is that author Joe Hill is also coming along for the ride.

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Rex Tyler is your average genius pharmaceutical analyst. He’s got a steady job, an estranged ex-wife and son, and a few latent desires to sneak out at night punch evildoers in the face. So when Rex realizes that the visions he’s had since childhood are actually a form of superpower – he’s actually been seeing events that will occur one hour into the future – he dons a nifty hooded cloak and christens himself “Hourman.” Chances are, you’ve never heard of Hourman, and neither has the vast majority of the civilized world. Not surprising, considering that the DC superhero’s popularity peaked during WWII and hasn’t shown any signs of recovery in the last seventy years. Until now, apparently. The Hollywood Reporter has news that The CW is developing an Hourman series to fall in alongside the network’s Arrow and the upcoming The Flash, with Michael Caleo  (writer for The Sopranos and Ironside) working on the script and executive producing. This is significant news for The CW – Hourman means the network is secure enough in its superhero properties to start taking chances with a character nobody (excluding devoted comic readers and octogenarians) have ever heard of. As well, Hourman seems to mark the beginnings of an interconnected TV superhero world, not unlike what Marvel‘s been doing in film for the past decade or so.

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Channel Guide - Large

There’s a promotional poster for Arrow, The CW’s new sleek and broody reimagining of DC’s Green Arrow comic, that looks a lot like the one for the first season of Smallville. Naturally, emblazoned across both posters, there are dramatic, single-word show titles that allude to a superhero universe. More importantly (and more prominently), though, both feature a lone, shirtless, young man with chiseled, next-level ab muscles—something that is clearly supposed to hint at the pathos underpinning these shows. Dubious (aka brilliant) marketing strategies aside, Arrow is a lucidly composed action-adventure series that, in its premiere, never comes off cheesy despite the fact that it’s ostensibly about a guy who skulks around a dark city with a bow and arrow—which, somehow seems stranger than wearing a bat costume. If its first episode and promotional poster are any indication, the show has the potential to be as big of a success for the increasingly teen soap opera driven CW as ten-season wonder Smallville.

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Since last summer MTV has been slowly moving their way back into scripted television, something they stepped out of right around 2000. Their first attempt came in the form of the absolutely terrible The Hard Times of RJ Berger, this was followed by a remake of the hit British series Skins. Unfortunately, while a solid (but ultimately failed) attempt at a remake, the series was met with harsh backlash against its content. The backlash combined with the show’s poor ratings ultimately led to its cancellation this past week. Now here we are, saddled with the network’s latest attempt at scripted drama, Teen Wolf. This may be a re-imagining of the Michael J. Fox film from ’85, but the differences are major. MTV’s version is more of an adaptation in name only, and while the series is fraught with problems (many, many problems), it does show, much like Skins, that MTV is willing to grow on a creative level because this is the network’s best scripted series to date.

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The final day of the broadcast television upfronts is upon us and The CW has released their fall schedule for the upcoming 2011-2012 television season. And we finally have a definitive list of all the new programming that will be coming up which includes: Hart of Dixies, Ringer, H8R and The Secret Circle. In case you were curious as to what the hell something called H8R might be, we have trailers for all the new shows below. As for any surprises on the schedule, there really aren’t any. But there is one change that could effect a returning series. Freshman spy show Nikita that we here at Film School Rejects spent all of this last season gushing over, has been moved to Friday’s at 8pm pairing it with Supernatural and putting it up against other genre television series such as Chuck on NBC. Another quick piece of news from the junior network is that the next season on One Tree Hill will be its last. Here is the full schedule and the trailers that were released:

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Continuing with our on-going coverage of all things TV for the next few days, NBC has made yet another pick up announcement for four more series orders. The four pilots that have been picked up to series are “Are You There, Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea, starring Laura Prepon, Free Agents, starring Hank Azaria, Bent, starring Amanda Peet, and BFF (formerly Best Friends Forever)” according to TV By The Numbers. The astute reader will notice that all of these series are comedies. Could NBC be planning another day worth of prime time comedy in addition to their already stacked Thursday night comedy block? It’s looking very likely. As for the cancellations? The peacock has decided to finally pull the plug on the god awful demon spawn that is The Event. The show has been an absolute mess since day one with a forcefully, and annoyingly convoluted plot. Let this failed show be a sign to all other networks, just because one sci-fi show is successful (LOST), doesn’t mean all of them will be. Of course, that’s not all that got cut.

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With Smallville ending in a few weeks, Human Target (unfortunately) hanging on by a the skin of its teeth in ratings, The Incredible Hulk in pre-production and the Wonder Woman pilot now shot and awaiting word on series pickup possibilities, this is a great time to discuss what other comic book franchises would be well served by a live action TV adaptation. So without any ado at all, I offer five comic book franchises that would make great TV and the networks that would make the best match.

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The CW takes on Little Robin with The Graysons

Just as Smallville focused on the younger years of Clark Kent, as well as his life before becoming Superman, it appears that The CW’s next series The Graysons will do the same for Batman’s sidekick Robin.

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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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published: 12.18.2014
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