NBC is realizing that their current slate of comedies are either getting too long in the tooth (The Office, 30 Rock) or performing terribly in the ratings (Community, Parks and Recreation, Up All Night), so the network is ordering a slew of comedies a week before Upfront week in hopes to rejuvenate their comedy lineup and lure some people back to NBC and reclaim the title of “Must See TV.” Is it possible with these new shows?
The New Normal
NBC has given Glee and American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy a series order for his new half-hour single-camera family comedy The New Normal. The New Normal is comedy about a gay couple who gets a woman to be their surrogate so they can have a baby together. The New Normal stars Justin Bartha (David), Andrew Rannells (Bryan), Ellen Barkin (Jane), and Georgia King (Goldie). The New Normal is expected to get an August premiere date after the summer Olympics along with new comedy series Go On, and returning drama Grimm.
Anne Heche will be fronting this single-camera series about a woman who has given up on herself and her marriage, until she goes through an “awakening process” that makes her undergo a transformation into a desirable woman again – who may be channeling God. Co-starring Heche will be Alexandra Breckenridge, Heather Burns, Lamon Rucker, Madison Davenport, and Michael Landes.
1600 Penn will take a comedic look at the dysfunctional family in the White House. Written by former Obama speechwriter Jon Lovett and directed by Modern Family director Jason Winer, 1600 Penn will star Bill Pullman as the President, Jenna Elfman as the First Lady and stepmother to the president’s children. Josh Gad also co-stars as the president’s oldest, out-of-control son.
According to NBC, they want you to imagine House set in a veterinarian’s office. Animal Practice stars Justin Kirk as Dr. George Coleman, a veterinarian that loves animals, but usually doesn’t care too much for their owners. Tyler Labine, Amy Huberman, and Kym Whitley also star.
J.J. Abrams adds to his growing empire of shows with NBC’s new high octane drama about a group of people trying to survive and be reunited with love ones after forms of energy in the world mysteriously disappear. (I don’t quite understand the premise of this drama – yet – but it’s J.J. Abrams, so the drama has been on the fast track to a series order for months). Revolution stars Bill Burke, Giancarlo Esposito, Tracy Spiradakos, Graham Rogers, and Anna Lise.
The New Normal, 1600 Penn, Save Me, Animal Practice, and Revolution join Matthew Perry’s recently ordered series Go On as early series pick-ups going into the 2012-2013 TV season.
More more information on all of NBC’s new series head to The Futon Critic