In a year when we've sadly had to said goodbye to both 30 Rock and Breaking Bad, there are plenty of new shows to pick up the slack. Cable will continue to push boundaries this year, but the networks might also surprise us with some unexpected hits that break the mold. The following awesome-looking new shows will definitely offer us something we haven't seen before.
Mixology has an unusual premise, the likes of which we haven't seen since 24. But unlike the very dramatic 24, Mixology is a comedy. The show centers on a group of people looking for love one night at a bar. Episodes follow different individuals throughout a single night, spread over the course of an entire season. The premise already has plenty of comedic potential, but toss in the duo that wrote The Hangover and the director of Borat and Curb Your Enthusiasm (Larry Charles) and you have a network comedy that will certainly take some hilarious risks.
Focused on two people (both married) having an affair who suddenly find themselves involved on opposite sides of a major trial, Betrayal is all about the buzz; Hollywood has been talking about the new show a lot this season, and how can they not? Betrayal has some killer dramatic tension at its center.
A show as big as this one is going to have major pressure on it from the network to do well. It's unclear if this is going to make it better or worse (as is often the case when this kind of pressure is placed on show creators), but our fingers are still crossed for a juicy new drama.
3. Killer Women
Killer Women is about a recently divorced, elite Texas Ranger. This premise might not sound special on its own, but it's impossible to be too enthusiastic about a show starring Tricia Helfer. Ever since she stole the show week after week as the many complex incarnations of Number 6 on Battlestar Galactica, the world hasn't gotten to see Tricia Helfer do nearly enough. Killer Women is yet another American adaptation of a foreign show (Mujeres Asesinas), but the series has already succeeded in both Argentina and Mexico in two varying incarnations. I'm willing to bet it will translate to English.
4. Masters of Sex
Premium channels are known for embracing (to put it mildly) sex, so where else would you expect to find a show about two pioneers in the world of human sexuality studies? Showtime is the perfect place for Masters of Sex – a biographical tale about the real life husband and wife scientists who spent their ground-breaking careers researching human sexuality in the 1950’s. (Sex in the 50’s? I thought they all slept in separate beds...)
5. Sleepy Hollow
Pre-sold franchises are not just for the big screen anymore. Sleepy Hollow takes a bold twist on a familiar tale by pulling its classic characters out of their world and thrusting them into ours. Set in the modern day, Sleepy Hollow is supernatural, mysterious, and built on legends we already know well. Faced with such classic source material, Sleepy Hollow is under a lot of pressure to start strong. But if it captures the eyeballs it needs to find its legs, this show could grow a very loyal fanbase.
6. Super Fun Night
About three shut-ins who rebel against their introverted ways, Super Fun Night has been garnering buzz longer than almost any other new series. CBS may have passed on it last year, but ABC is giving it a chance this season. Everybody in Hollywood seems to want Rebel Wilson (Pitch Perfect, Bridesmaids) to succeed – and since she created and stars in Super Fun Night, this might be the breakout hit that sends her to the next level.
7. Brooklyn 99
Brooklyn 99 centers around Saturday Night Live alum Andy Samberg as a lazy cop who gets a by-the-book new boss (played by Andre Braugher). If you've loved SNL over the last few years, chances are you've loved an Andy Samberg sketch. The polarity between Braugher's strict captain and Samberg's laid-back detective should provide a solid foundation for easy laughs.
8. The Blacklist
The Blacklist looks like a more serious version of White Collar, and that's a good thing. James Spader plays the FBI's Most Wanted, who turns himself in to help catch other criminals. What's most exciting about The Blacklist is that it's backed by Sony, the same company that made Breaking Bad happen. The premise of The Blacklist sounds like there might be just enough moral ambiguity to keep this network show interesting.
9. The 100
Most sci-fi fans wouldn't be interested in a CW show (this is the network normally brings us shows ending with the word "Diaries"), but The 100 doesn't sound like your usual CW show A group of petty criminals are sent back to a post-nuclear war Earth after the space station they've been living on can't hold them anymore. The cast features a diverse bunch of characters who all have one thing in common: they break rules. The struggle for authority should make for great conflict as these criminals fight for survival. And The 100's promos make it intriguingly obvious that there's more life on Earth than anyone would like.