Tag: mix

ABC | 2015/2016 Pilot Season: The Best & Worst


Before ABC reveals its new schedule next Tuesday, here’s the best & worst of their pilot season ! Just my humble opinion.



1. QUANTICO – Ordered to series

“an incredibly strong contender at ABC, not only because it’s a great pilot script that keeps you on the edge of your seat for the whole time but above all because it’s the promise of a show that will keep you on the edge of your seat EVERY WEEK for an ENTIRE SEASON -and hopefully more- alongside characters you can only care about, through a journey that’s relevant to the world we live in. It’s a bomb in the making that’s about to explode. The Clock is already ticking. Tick tock… Tick Tock…” Full preview here

2. THE FAMILY (aka ORIGINAL SIN) – Ordered to series

“a family drama, a very human one, more than a mystery or a detective show, or even a soap. (…) People can relate to this family and its members, they can feel for the detective, they can get excited by the investigation and the secrets that will be found along the way… And it won’t even feel like a sin to love it (…) Everything’s in place to make a great show out of the already great pilot.” Full preview here

3. THE BROAD SQUAD – Dead but could be redeveloped

” This pilot manages to be both entertaining and intelligent, even important I might add (…) The Broad Squad is not your usual cop show, not only because it’s a period drama but because it aims to be different, not a crime-solving straight procedural but a heavy serialized and character-driven one, with no strong emphasis on romantic storylines.” Full preview here

4. THE CATCH – Ordered to series

“it’s in the same vein as Scandal and entirely devoted to Alice Martin, a strong leading woman, brilliant at her job but who can also prove to be fragile when it comes to her messy personal life, in the same fashion as Meredith Grey, Addison Montgomery, Olivia Pope and Annalise Keating (…) The Catch comes off as a thrilling ride, but I can’t say it blew my mind… yet.” Full preview here

5. OIL (aka BOOM) – Ordered to series

“it is as ambitious as it looks, and as ambitious as the couple at the center of the show is. t has what it takes it to be a good entertaining TV series that doesn’t take its viewers for morons and which offers a little bit more than just fun. That being said, Boom may be a little too smart and intricate for its own good…” Full preview here

6. KINGMAKERS – Officially Dead

“Kingmakers is ABC wanting to recreate the magic they once had with Revenge. It’s not a spin-off, it’s not officially a reboot. It’s the same show but different. You know you’ve seen it before but you don’t really care as long as they keep it entertaining and fresh somehow. Let’s call it a spiritual spin-off!” Full preview here

7. MIX – Officially Dead

“Mix finds the right balance between the prime time family soap like Dallas and the more emotion-based family drama like Parenthood, the same way Brothers & Sisters did in fact. Let’s call it a family dramedy, with a lot of heart, a bit of laughs and the inevitable dirty little secrets we’re exposed to throughout the pilot (…) It’s almost too simple and too sweet to be really good.” Full preview here

8. RUNNER – Officially Dead

“ABC has better things to pick up, but it’s a solid pilot script that embarks us on a thrilling ride.” Full preview here

9. KINGS AND PROPHETS – Ordered to series

“Game of Thrones is a soap opera in its bones. The Bible is too, in a way. Kings and Prophets even more. It’s about lies, treasons, revenge… Death is everywhere all the time.  I wouldn’t have bet on it before reading the script, now I’m intrigued though not totally convinced. It could crash, it could work, it could even be a hit. Everything’s possible.” Full preview here

10. WICKED CITY (aka LA CRIME) – Ordered to series

“Dark and twisty. It takes a dangerous road for a network show because of the way the serial killer called Clark Gallagher operates (…) But I’m not sure in this crowded television landscape, already full of serial killers, this show has something more to offer…” Full preview here

11. THE ADVOCATE – Officially Dead

“An interesting way of spinning your gold ol’ medical drama, but not distinctive enough to make a splash and be a game changer. It’s nice, it’s a good vehicle for Kim Raver, but it’s boring most of time. The medical part is okay, but the soapy part is just too generic”. 

12. THE ADVERSARIES – Officially Dead

“not something new, not something bad, not something we’d be willing to really give a chance (…) trying to distinguish itself through the family drama perspective, but even that has already been made and it doesn’t make that much of a difference in the end (…) It will skew old and it doesn’t really fit with the schedule. It’s efficient and pleasant but a little outdated.” Full preview here

Not reviewed: UNTITLED AGENTS OF SHIELD PROJECT – Officially Dead


Martha Plimpton as Virginia Chance, Jimmy's mother.


1. THE REAL O’NEALS – Ordered to series

“it fits perfectly with ABC’s brand, alongside Modern Family, The Goldbergs and all the others (…) The fact that the narrator is a teenage boy makes it sound like Fresh Off the Boat too, which can’t be a bad thing. Honestly, I’m already in love with these people (…)”  Full preview here

2. NERD HERD – Officially Dead

“I laughed out loud while reading it, which doesn’t happen very often to me (…) Just picture all of the smart ass kids of TV -like Manny from Modern Family or the adorable Brick from The Middle– and make them brothers and sisters, living in the same house.Full preview here

3. DELORES & JERMAINE – Officially Dead

“This shit is good. Better than expected, better than you think and even better than it should have been. I mean: a young man living with his grandma, it’s quite exciting on paper I think -I love grandmas on TV- but it’s paper thin at the same time. Somehow, the magic happens and at the end of the pilot, nothing about it seems thin anymore.” Full preview here

4. CHEVY – Officially Dead

“it’s in the vein of The Middle. They share the same kind of sweetness and warmness, and they aim at the same sort of truth of what a family really is, or should be, based on everyday life (…) It would fit perfectly in ABC’s line-up”  Full preview here

5. FORTUNE FAMILY – Officially Dead

“TV definitely needs a lesbian heroin, even more if she’s not the pretty kind. That’s diversity too, guys! Outside of the coming-out part, which is dealt with really well, the sitcom is probably less original than The Real O’Neals for many reasons, especially the mother & father dynamic that we have already witnessed countless times, but it works” Full preview here

6. ALL STARS – Officially Dead

“Better than expected, really funny at times, with an extravaganza you don’t find on the other ABC projects. But it’s more niche and the sports part lost me a bit. Not the best choice.” 

7. THE 46 PERCENTERS – Officially Dead

“Liked this one way more than expected and I can totally picture it lasting for years. But too many farts jokes for my taste, probably.” 

8. DR KEN – Ordered to series

“Liked this one way more than expected (again) and I can totally picture it paired with Last Man Standing. Good for diversity, good for laughs, but not especially great regarding originality” 

9. THE KING OF 7B – Officially Dead

“Quite daring, totally original and crazy, but a bit of a mess, with a feeling that it can’t last very long with such a pitch. Would better fit on Netflix or something!”

10. UNCLE BUCK – Ordered to series

“Not impressed. But it has some potential somehow…” 

11. KNOXVILLE – Officially dead

“A family comedy about rednecks? Already done by Greg Garcia with Earl and then Raising Hope. We don’t need this one even if it’s fine.”

12. WARRIORS – Officially Dead

“Don’t understand the attractiveness of this project. But apparently it has one. Maybe not being remotely interested in basket ball didn’t help. I have faith in producer Dan Fogelman -and ABC too since they can’t keep ordering his shows- but I don’t think it belongs to ABC, even if they broadcast NBA…”

Not reviewed: THE MUPPETS -Ordered to series


What pilots are you rooting for ?

“Mix” (ABC) pilot preview: A half-baked family soap that still makes you hungry for more!


Created by Jennifer Cecil (Private Practice, Brothers & Sisters, 92010, Hostages). Produced by Rashida Jones (A To Z), Will McCormack (A To Z) & Jeff Grosvenor. Directed by Daniel Barnz (Cake, Won’t Back Down, Beastly). For ABC, Warner Bros. Television & Le Train Train Productions. 58 pages.

Description: Welcome to Mix, a family-owned restaurant in Austin, Texas. It’s a special day… or perhaps the eye of the storm for the Castillos, a multicultural and multigenerational family. Owner and larger-than-life chef Ray Castillo is doing what he does best: cooking. He’s juggling running the restaurant, catering his son Mateo’s commitment ceremony to his boyfriend Finn and preparing the kitchen for the return of his daughter Remy, home from a three year stint in prison for drug possession. His ex-wife but best friend, Stella Knox, is always around, running an offshoot of Mix called Mix Plus. The food, family, and frenzy makes Ray long for the days when the clan was one big happy family…

With Sharon Lawrence (NYPD Blue, Ladies Man, Hidden Palms), Joaquim de Almeida (24, Desperado, Clear and Present Danger), Britne Oldford (American Horror Story, Ravenswood, Skins US), Walter Perez (Fame 2009, Friday Night Lights), Camille Guaty (Prison Break, The Nine, Las Vegas), Sam Page (Desperate Housewives, Mad Men, House of Cards), Blake Lee (Parks and Recreation, Mixology), Yodbee

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Family drama lovers like me feel abandoned and desperate since Parenthood went off the air a few weeks ago, leaving us with our tears of joy and damaged hearts (and some Empire and Shameless to cope with). And we’re still not over the Brothers & Sisters‘ Walkers yet even if they were cancelled 4 years ago! So, a project like Mix -the only family drama ordered to pilot this cycle- is a blessing as much as a curse. All our expectations and frustations are focused towards it. As a result, disappointment is likely. And disappointed I feel. But hopeful too. Mix is just not as good as Parenthood and Brothers & Sisters used to be. But hey, it’s a pilot! These family shows grow on us as time goes by, if time they get. Maybe it will turn into something great…

What makes Mix different is, of course, its multicultural take on family, spot on with the diversity fueled transformation networks are living right now. The father is latino, the mother is white, their children are biracial, among them one is gay, another one just adopted an African kid of 9 years old and the third one is the sister from another (black) mother. We’re just missing an asian character and the mix would have been complete. It doesn’t feel very natural to pile up minorities like this, yes it’s kind of opportunistic, but once you’re past that, it just feels good to live in a time when such a family can exist on television. I can’t say I’m fond of the whole set of characters for now, ‘cos we have met them before countless times, and I can’t say I’m crazy about the cast either since Sharon Lawrence, Joaquim de Almeida, Camille Guaty and so on are not Sally Field, Calista Flockart, Peter Krause or Lauren Graham. But I can assure you it didn’t cloud my judgement about the script. It’s just that Mix would have had a better chance to succeed with a stronger cast. I would have loved Rashida Jones, who’s producing the show, playing in it too, for example.

Mix finds the right balance between the prime time family soap like Dallas and the more emotion-based family drama like Parenthood, the same way Brothers & Sisters did in fact. Let’s call it a family dramedy, with a lot of heart, a bit of laughs and the inevitable dirty little secrets we’re exposed to throughout the pilot. Nothing new here: a father with debts, a family business on the verge of bankruptsy, a soon-to-be cancelled marriage and a black sheep who’s returning and creates chaos but not intentionally (this is a story of redemption, not revenge). Nothing really surprised me, except maybe the relationship between the parents, which is fascinating the way it is desribed: they’re three times divorcees but they still love each other and they still believe they can start over. It could have been ridiculous, but it’s sweet. That being said, Mix really needs a good villain and a pretty bitch to step up its game and get spicier, pepperier. The restaurant setting really helps getting in the mood, it gives some kind of authenticity to the show, a rhythm too. And there’s food everywhere all the time. It makes you hungry for more.

I certainly have… mixed feelings about Mix. It’s almost too simple and too sweet to be really good. It could the CW’s version of family dramedy (they had one, Life Unexpected, which was cool). But it’s heartwraming and promising, they just have to “soap” it up a bit. I don’t see it being the next Brothers & Sisters or Parenthood but it’s a nice little show we could be happy to return to every week. However, if ABC doesn’t order it to series, no need to cry over it. 

ABC starts pilot season with 5 drama orders!


After NBC, FOX & CBS, ABC finally enters pilot season with first five drama orders, all very different from each other.

First one is a surprise, since it was a project set-up at FOX for the last two years. New regime there decided 20th Century FOX-produced Runner would be a better fit with ABC because of the female perspective of it. The idea was very welcome at the alphabet and now a pilot is on the rails. Runner centers on Lauren Marks, whose seemingly perfect life is ripped apart by one simple twist of fate. To uncover the truth, she must follow a trail of lies that takes her into the world of cartels and the illegal gun trade between the U.S. and Mexico. It is an adaptation of Turkish series Son.

Second one is a biblical drama, a very trendy genre since the success of The Bible on History. NBC has its follow-up A.D. coming this spring, and CBS has mini-series The Dovekeepers. ABC is trying it with Of Kings And Prophets, an ABC Studios production, which is an epic saga of faith, ambition and betrayal as told through the eyes of a battle-weary king, a powerful and resentful prophet and a resourceful young shepherd on a collision course with destiny. This is the very very serious version of Galavant.

Third one is a family dramedy, as Parenthood is ending on NBC next week. Mix, produced by Rashida Jones and written Jennifer Cecil (Private Practice) explores the realities of modern-day families — multi-cultural, multi-generational, built through divorces, affairs and adoptions — set against the backdrop of a revered family restaurant at a crossroads. 

Fourth is L.A Crime, an anthology detective drama based on true stories. It explores sex, politics and popular culture across various noteworthy eras in Los Angeles history. In Season 1, two LA cops will be searching for a Bonnie & Clyde-esque serial-killing team amidst the coke-infused rock ‘n’ roll, revelry of the 1980s Sunset Strip. ABC Studios is producing.

Last but not least, Quantico, a very hot project that could be a perfect companion for How To Get Away With Murder, written by Josh Safran (Smash) and produced by ABC Studios. It centers on a group of young FBI recruits, all with specific reasons for joining, who battle their way through training at the Quantico base in Virginia. As the show intercuts between their hidden pasts and their present training, it also flashes forward to the near future, where one of the recruits will turn out to be a sleeper terrorist responsible for the most devastating terrorist attack on U.S. soil since 9/11. A very ambitious idea that unwillingly echoes what just happened in France…

ABC is expected to order 5 more drama pilots and 10 comedy pilots in the next days.