Modern Day Muggs

For several years, some friends and I made a complicated spreadsheet for the new TV season. We’d cast our votes on what would make it and what wouldn’t.

We could vote for what shows would be cancelled within 4 weeks, which would make it to midseason (13 weeks) and not be picked up, which would get the full season pickup yet not return the following season, and which would make an appearance the following year.

We’d consider all variables: timeslot, what it was up against, how many copycat shows were out there, how desperate a network was for a hit, the incongruous success of According to Jim. Alas, I no longer see these friends every day (hi guys!), or else we’d be factoring in the effects of the WGA strike and the possibility of a SAG strike on the 2008-2009 season.

To continue the Television Thunderdome tradition, I’m moving it online. Over the next couple of days, check back for a breakdown of the new fall shows and my picks for what survives and what’s taken out by Master-Blaster. Take my picks with a huge grain of salt. Remember, I’m the person who watched every episode of Manimal and didn’t like Seinfeld.

To keep things simple, I’m only looking at the 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. primetime hours and keeping the networks to ABC, CBS, CW, Fox and NBC. I don’t care about Holly Hunter’s fight with the Devil on TNT or TBS. And I’m only including The CW because of 90210. The Futon Critic has a complete fall grid. They also run previews of the new shows and pilots that weren’t picked up. The New York Times live-blogged the network’s upfronts for more insights into the new shows.

The 9-10 hour on Tuesday nights looks to have been almost completely revamped from the current season. Thursday nights look the same. What am I looking forward to? 90210 although I didn’t watch that much of the original. The Mentalist. Life on Mars. Crusoe, but I’ll get interested and then it will be cancelled.

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