Breaking Down the 2015 TV Upfronts: FOX

by Matthew Thompson

I am always up for a good procedural. Some of my all-time favorite shows at their core are exactly that. And yet I found myself a little disappointed that of the four drama trailers FOX released to the public on Monday, they all seemed to be twists on that style of show. There was just a real lack of variety in these offerings. Heck even two of the comedies they showed off seemed fairly similar with two leading men who find a second act in life that involves them reconnecting (or just connecting) with their families.

The Grinder

Fred Savage and Rob Lowe in The Grinder

That isn’t to say none of these interested me. I was quite taken with the trailer for The Grinder. I already love Rob Lowe’s character who goes from TV lawyer to the real thing. Not only does he seem well-suited for the role, there seems to be a lot of fun to be had in how others react to him whether that be his brother (Fred Savage seems like a good fit for the straight man in this duo) or his fans (including his niece who thinks it is just so cool to be watching her uncle’s TV show with him).

Of the four procedurals they trotted out, I liked The Minority Report the most. I have some concerns. A procedural sequel series doesn’t seem nearly as interesting as the original story. And the lead seems a little on the bland side (I wasn’t into Lucifer, but I can’t deny the guy had some real charisma which made both the lead of The Frankenstein Code and The Minority Report seem extra boring in comparison). My hope is that they do their best to leverage the futuristic setting and technology to both spice up cases and build a good mythology. Quality sci-fi shows aren’t plentiful on TV right now, so I’d love this one to turn out well.

Scream Queens

Scream Queens

The shows coming to FOX this season that excited me most were the two I didn’t get to see as much of this week. I just love the concept of Scream Queens, the network’s upcoming horror-comedy anthology series which will hone in on a string of killings at a college campus. I grew up watching horror movies and have spent plenty of time with clever entries like Scream that offer a more comedic, satirical take on the genre. So the idea of something similar coming to television (which I have come to prefer to movies over the past decade) is an idea I can really get behind. Throw in the murder mystery aspect and an excellent cast led by Jamie Lee Curtis (who knows a little something about horror movies), and this show just sounds fantastic. My only experience with Ryan Murphy was American Horror Story’s first season (which I found to be tripe for the most part), so I’m not really sure if this is in good hands. It is easily FOX’s most original addition to the schedule this Fall and I so badly want it to turn out well. (Note: As I was editing this to be published, they finally released the full trailer for Scream Queens after just giving little teasers before… and it looks good, so that is a plus!)

The show I’m most looking forward to that is new to next season’s schedule is one that isn’t exactly new at all. I’m talking about the return of The X-Files. There has been an uptick in these sorts of revivals lately, but as one of my all-time favorites, The X-Files is the first that I find myself truly excited to see come back. Very little is known about it at the moment, but I can’t wait for this new limited series to debut next January.

On the one hand, FOX has some shows I can’t wait to see next season (I plan to pick my favorites among all the networks in my final post in this series and I see at least a couple of the ones here featuring in that list). On the other hand, their slate of new shows lacks the diversity of those shown off by ABC and CBS this week which I will cover soon. If you’d like to see some trailers for FOX’s new offerings for next season, you can check them out here. Thanks for reading!

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4 comments on “Breaking Down the 2015 TV Upfronts: FOX

  1. I don’t really have much confidence in Scream Queens, I have to say. Ryan Murphy’s shows are for the most part insufferable, and aside from the bright spot of season 2 of AHS, his stuff definitely makes me avoid at all costs. I hope it does turn out well, though.

    And I haven’t seen an episode of the X Files yet. It’s a fairly daunting task to watch that many episodes, and I don’t know if it’s a good idea to watch the new episodes.

    • You are probably right about Scream Queens, but to steal an X-Files line: I want to believe. The concept is right in my wheelhouse, I really want it to be good!

      And yeah I can see what you mean about it being daunting to get into The X-Files now. 200+ episodes is a lot! I happened to watch it on the original run. Used to tape it on my VCR when I wasn’t around!

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