Review: Mid-season replacements

Mid-season replacements came as a bunch, and on all channels, they were all a bit late (in previous years, the right time was around January). Another thing they had in common, none proved to be really successful, and most already got the big CANCELED stamp on their ultra short resumes. Here’s what I caught from the batch:

Wedding Bells 101 – 102:
David E. Kelley ventures in a little of a “normal” drama in this 3 sisters owning a wedding planner company setup. Nothing really whacky going on a la Boston Legal/Ally McBeal. Drama is also a bit on the light side, also very unlike The Practice/Chicago Hope. All in all, quite acceptable, were it not for my over scheduled TV list, and the lack of MUST-SEE elements.

Raines 101 – 102:
Here we have Jeff Goldblum playing a cop with a psychic twist. Talking the imaginary people (all dead victims of a case), he’ll try talking his way through the evidence, reasoning with methods and motives through dialogue in his own mind. While this is new (as in, no sudden clues from ghost or magic creatures), this process is slow and not that interesting. While Jeff can set a character, frankly, we already have enough over at the USA Network (Monk & Psych).

The Black Donnellys 101 – 106:
A series from Paul Haggis and partner Robert Moresco (both did the movies Crash and Million Dollar Baby), should prove promising. And it did on a lot of levels. Having 4 Irish brothers could be interesting, but they’re all into the mafia crime thing. Those storylines tend to blunt the effect of this series, mostly involving a kill, or extortion or money laundring schemes. But the positives things are the nice narrative style, the brotherly interaction and the bizarre dry humor.

Rating it would give you the following, in that order: The Black Donnellys, Wedding Bells and finishing last, Raines. But fate would have it, only Raines is still on the air. Ah well, I don’t mind, my TV schedule needs to go on a diet anyways.

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