TV: Fall TV surprises & letdowns

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

With the frenzied fall TV premiere season over - there are always too many shows starting all at once to catch them all - it's time to start predicting this season's winners and losers.

Without a doubt, the season's best new series are "Boardwalk Empire" and "Terriers." But a few other worthwhile shows may have gone overlooked amidst the fall fervor.

Along with those pleasant surprises, there have been some big letdowns, from overhyped programs that underwhelmed to ideas that should never have been greenlit in the first place.

Three up :


Maggie Q does an excellent job as the title character in this revamping of the "Nikita" franchise. With amped-up violence and sex appeal, this isn't the usual CW series aimed at high school girls.

"Blue Bloods"

CBS on Friday nights? Yeah, it's no wonder you've never heard of the NYC-set drama about a family of cops. But if there's one thing Donnie Wahlberg can play it's a cop, and popo papa Chief Frank Reagan is handled nicely by Tom Selleck. Yes, "Magnum P.I." Tom Selleck. Maybe it's the mustache.

"No Ordinary Family"

Yes, it's a copycat pulling from many sources ("Heroes," "The Incredibles," the entire Marvel universe). But it's also well-crafted, balancing light family moments with darker superhero action and mystery. Plus, Michael Chiklis and Romany Malco have fantastic chemistry.

Three down:


A spy series that tries to be funny is always a bad idea. A disappointing pilot gave way to even more lackluster follow-up episodes. Stars Boris Kodjoe and Gugu Mbatha-Raw seem talented, but the writing is just atrocious.

"The Event"

I'm still not totally sure what "The Event" is. But if it's what I'm thinking, it's just laughable. Even worse, the serialized mythology mystery relies heavily on cliffhangers with wholly anticlimactic resolutions. "The Event" is to "Lost" what Betty White is to "the most eligible bachelorettes."

"$#*! My Dad Says"

I love me some campy Bill Shatner, but that's not what you get here thanks to some really forced writing. Twitter isn't meant to be television - in the case of this show, it really is all in the title.