Cable’s portion of the winter 2012 Television Critics Association press tour will most likely be remembered for Univision’s Saturday morning presentation debacle, but the headline should be the industry’s continued push into a number of TV genres with quality, creative programming.
Independent networks GMC and Ovation TV announced that they will look to play with the big boys over the next year with the development of original scripted comedy and drama series respectively. GMC will look to bring its uplifting, inspirational message to the sitcom genre by 2013, having already developed movies in the genre like Brother White, while arts-themed Ovation will look to offer a new wrinkle to the drama category similar to its new original film We’ll Take Manhattan.
TV One will bring a different perspective to the justice/mystery reality genre with Find Our Missing. Hosted by Law & Order star S. Epatha Merkerson, the network will shine a light on African Americans that have gone missing — nearly a third of all missing persons are black despite African-Americans being only 12 percent of the overall U.S. population, according to the network.
TNT will go back to the future in the scripted drama category with its new Dallas series that it says is not a remake or a reboot, but a continuation of the series that dominated TV screens in the 1980s and early 1990s. A&E will consider reviving Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960s thriller Psycho with a prequel series that looks at the life of an adolescent Norman Bates.
FX will build on its drive into animation with the development of teen-themed comedy sitcom Unsupervised and join the late night wars with a Russell Brand project, while HBO will take a shot at political humor with its hilarious new scripted comedy Veep, starring Julia Louis-Dreyfus.
Even the J. Lo and Marc Anthony series Q’Viva! The Chosen — which searches across Latin America for top musical talent — looks to provide a unique take on the music competition genre. But the recently-divorced-but-still-amicable couple’s very short Q&A session Saturday morning left much to be desired.
If cable’s Winter TCA presentations are any indication, 2012 should be another strong, creative year for cable networks.