Geekomancer Under Glass – Fall 2014 Upfronts

18 May

Hi folks! I’m back from a novel-induced hiatus, and I’m excited to talk to you all about Fall 2014 Upfronts.

For those who don’t follow TV development, Upfronts are the part of the broadcasting season where networks show off their upcoming seasons, new and returning shows, in order to secure up-front advertisement buys.

These days, the side-effect of Upfronts is that debut shows get trailers, which end up on YouTube, and then end up in blog posts by geeky writers.

I’ve watched through a number of these videos, and bring you some of the most promising and most ridiculous of these Upfronts, to get everyone excited months and months ahead of when any of these shows will be debuting.

First, I want to start with a show that doesn’t have a video but I don’t care because

AGENT CARTER!

Agent Carter teaser poster

Ever since watching the Agent Carter one-shot included in the Iron Man 3 BluRay, I’ve been hoping this show would become a thing. Marvel overall is doing better on diversity than DC in their TV & Film, but ‘better’ still isn’t ‘really that good, at all.’ We haven’t seen a solo film fronted by a woman, despite the fact that Black Widow all but declared that she was going off to have her own solo movie at the end of Captain America: The Winter Soldier. We do have the Jessica Jones series coming as part of the five-show Netflix Defenders shows, so that’s cool.

But for now, I’m very excited to see the concept introduced in the Agent Carter one-shot expanded into a full show, even if it’s just that 13-episode mini-series. Especially considering how fun the Howling Commandos callback stuff has been over the last few episodes of Agents of SHIELD.

GALAVANT

 

So, basically, it’s a post-modern comedic epic fantasy musical. So, really, it’s got Mike written all over it. Will it be any good? Will it get cancelled so hard that it goes back in time and deletes this section of my blog post? Possibly. But for now, I will cackle with goofy excitement.

HEIROGLYPH

I didn’t find an embeddable video for this one, so I’m going to send you here to watch.

All done? Good. Some thoughts:

1) Hey, Travis Beacham! That’s the guy who wrote Pacific Rim, my #1 favorite Giant Robots Punching Kaiju movie, ever!

2) Wow, this is some high production value.

3) Why is the main character a white guy?

4) Why does so little of the cast appear to be Egyptian, African, or even Middle-Eastern? I R confused.

Now, I do not have magic ethnicity-knowing powers, and as a white guy, I’m not in the best place to go hailing and dictating other people’s ethnic/race presentation, but I’m kind of embarrassed that Fox thinks that I, as a White Male Aged 18-34 (31 to be precise), while being the coveted advertising demographic, wouldn’t tune in to a LOST-esque historical fantasy set in Egypt starring people from backgrounds that match the setting. Medieval POC tells us that white-washed fantasy medievalist visions of the era are BS, and even if there probably were also white folks kicking around in ancient Egypt, I really don’t think that it makes good story sense to bring in a white guy to be the main character in a story set in and explicitly about Egypt.

Trust your audience, okay? Every network and their brother is greenlighting shows staring black folk, black women to be precise, thanks to the amazing success of Scandal. Get with the program. I’m very happy to be proven wrong on this one, but as of now, the casting has under-cut most of my excitement.

Also, TV. If you want a fantasy show set in an Egypt-ish setting? Why not buy the rights to N.K. Jemisin’s Dreamblood Duology? But for that one, you actually have to cast black actors in the leads. So get settled on that, and then give Nora’s agent a call.

THE FLASH

 

Let me start by saying that I really liked the 1990 Flash TV show. Sure, I was seven at the time, so I may not have been the finest judge of quality. It was a weird anomaly at the time, and looking back, I’m kind of surprised it got made at all.

I’ve really enjoyed Arrow, and I look forward to watching the second season on BluRay when it drops. But Arrow has taken a while to embrace full-on superhero-ness, spending a lot of time in shadowy vigilante-land.

But this? This looks like The Flash is going for a Silver Age feel right from the get-go, fitting for the character. (In reality, probably a Neo-Silver age like what a lot of Marvel & DC are doing now).

We’ve got supervillains and a full-body costume right from the beginning, and according to this preview, Barry will be doing superhero things like a superhero from the beginning.

I was mildly excited about CW’s The Flash when I heard it announced. With this video? It’s one of my most-anticipated shows of Fall 2014 at the moment. I really hope there is room on network TV for a live-action superhero show about actual superheroes doing actual superhero things. Budget will be a concern, but if Warner is pumping $$ into their shows to build up a multimedia franchise like Marvel has been doing, they’re going to need to keep stepping it up like they have been with Arrow, and like Flash looks to be doing.


 

What Upfront previews are you all excited about? Link or talk about them in the comments, and let us squee or cringe in a vacuum over the summer as these shows move to series production, to entertain, disappoint, and our pleasantly surprise us this fall.

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