The Shows – NBC

American Dreams

American Dreams

NBC/CH

Sundays 8-9 pm

the story: Period piece that tracks the evolution of an American family through the turbulent ’60s and ’70s. From the highs of rock and roll, to the lows of presidential assassination and the Vietnam War, we see America through the Pryor family’s eyes as times change.

the cast: Gail O’Grady (NYPD Blue)

the verdict: This one has been well received so far and should do well. For NBC it’s good to be king, and that will not change soon. This should help their Sunday night line-up quite a bit as audiences will surely respond to some good, wholesome Americana that puts things in perspective for them.

the backing: With their well-established fare doing well, NBC can easily afford to pour resources behind this one.

Boomtown

NBC/CTV

Sundays 10-11 pm

the story: Looks at the other L.A. – i.e. the millions of people in the City of Angels who aren’t involved with Hollywood. The show is set against the backdrop of the city’s real streets, and the cops, detectives and paramedics who work on them.

the cast: Donnie Wahlberg (Band of Brothers)

the verdict: Producer Graham Yost (Band of Brothers) has tried to create a Pulp Fiction for TV but this is perhaps the weakest of NBC’s new series.

the backing: You can see this show on any one of the Law & Order spin-offs. NBC doesn’t need to hype it too much, as it’s up against The Practice and whatever Chuck Norris vehicle CBS is playing as its Sunday movie. The fact that Chuck Norris has a vehicle (TV or motorized) should be very frightening to everyone.

In-Laws

NBC

Tuesdays 8-8:30 pm

the story: Snappy idea about a young married couple who are forced to move in with her parents when he decides to go back to culinary school.

the cast: Elon Gold (The Dana Carvey Show), Dennis Farina (Snatch), Bonnie Summerville (Friends)

the verdict: I like Dennis Farina. He’s tough and funny. More to the point, Kelsey Grammer is executive producer, and despite whatever grief he takes for playing the same guy for his entire career, he is smart and this comedy will be too.

the backing: Nice position. Will do well on Tuesdays with NBC, which will promote it well.

Hidden Hills

NBC/Global

Tuesdays 9:30-10 pm

the story: Homogenous American Beauty comes to network TV. NBC’s release is too much: ‘It’s not your normal tree-lined American neighborhood. Or maybe it is.’ This relationship comedy explores the zany side of the ‘burbs while tracking the mad romps of two couples.

the cast: Justin Louis, Paula Marshall

the verdict: Holy Etobicoke! To me the suburbs have always been about frustrated department store managers on John Deere lawn mowers making googly eyes at the neighbor’s 14-year-old girls while middle-aged housewives do soft porn with the milkman. If that’s what this show is about, it should be fantastic. Best guess is that it will be something less than thrilling.

the backing: NBC wants to shore up viewers from outside the major markets – read: people who don’t get Frasier. This could do it for them, while holding the same audience for Stone Phillips and Dateline at 10.

Good Morning Miami

NBC/Global

Thursdays 9:30-10 pm

the story: A hot TV producer takes over the lowest-rated morning show in America and command of the most dysfunctional production team in the history of broadcasting.

the cast: Mark Feuerstein (What Women Want, The West Wing)

the verdict: Trash-talking weatherwoman nun, beautiful hairstylist, Miami. This will be crude, sharp and winning. Good morning further ratings success for NBC.

the backing: Placed so nicely after Will & Grace, not to mention created by the same producers, and before ER. A sure winner.