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CBS Pilots Snap Judgment: Our First Reactions to the New Shows

by Maggie Furlong, posted Jun 10th 2011 12:00PM
New CBS Shows, 2011-2012We've seen the network's new fall pilots, and while they're not for review (things often change drastically before the shows are set to premiere), we do want to share our first reactions with you.

This is designed to get you excited for some new shows ... and to warn you to curb your enthusiasm for others. Just keep in mind that we'll have full reviews of the final pilots closer to airdate in the fall. For now, here are our snap judgments of all of CBS's new shows for the 2011-2012 TV season.

There are five shows total (read up and watch previews here) and plenty of varying opinions -- none of us agreed 100% on any of them -- from Mo Ryan, Maggie Furlong, Jean Bentley, Chris Harnick, Alex Moaba, Kim Potts and Laura Prudom.

Here's how we're breaking these down:
Watch It - awesome show, can't wait for more
Skip It - it's either horrible or just totally not their thing
DVR It - there's potential, will give it a second chance

FALL 2011
'2 Broke Girls''2 Broke Girls'
[Get the synopsis & watch a preview here]
Ryan: Watch It
Charming. Kat Dennings is amazing and the show built around her is pretty decent.

Furlong: Watch It
Never in a million years did I think I'd love this show, but I do. Shockingly quirky and hilarious.

Bentley: Watch It
Soooo much funnier than the laugh-track'd teaser would lead one to believe. It does take some time to get used to the multi-cam format when vagina jokes are involved, though.

Harnick: DVR It
I don't know how regularly I'll keep up with this show, but I appreciated the raunchy comedy and quick jokes.

Moaba: Watch It
Surprisingly well written, raunchy and funny. Kat Dennings carries the show that could become CBS's female-demo focused version of 'Two and a Half Men.'

Potts: Skip It
Everything about the comedy is outdated, from the references to 'One Tree Hill,' Paris Hilton and the Duke University sex scandal to the business the duo wants to open: a New York City cupcake shop, a trend that's definitely on its back nine.

Prudom: Watch It
This risqué comedy charmed me more than I was expecting -- Kat Dennings is hilarious as a snarky Brooklynite, and Beth Behrs has plenty of potential as her rich but clueless workmate. It's 'Gossip Girl' meets smart writing.

'A Gifted Man''A Gifted Man'
[Get the synopsis & watch a preview here]
Ryan: Watch It
From the description of the show, I expected to really dislike this medical drama, but wonder of wonders, the pilot was very good. I'm eager to see more.

Furlong: Skip It
Patrick Wilson is great here, and the show is truly unique, I'm just not sure I need to see more.

Bentley: DVR It
Patrick Wilson is probably the nicest guy ever, so seeing him play a d-bag doctor is kind of upsetting. I'd watch this if nothing else was on, but it's not a must-see for me.

Harnick: Skip It
Not my thing.

Moaba: DVR It
'House' meets 'Touched by an Angel,' which could well be a formula for a CBS hit, but not my personal cup of tea. Dr. Holt is an interesting character with depth and room to grow, and I can see millions of viewers joining him on his supernatural journey towards social consciousness.

Potts: DVR It
Patrick Wilson plays a hotshot neurosurgeon whose dead ex-wife comes back as a ghost (who only he can see and hear) to teach him life lessons. Yeah, groan. But as a straight medical show about a kinda jerky guy who's an exceptional doctor and his sassy, super competent assistant (Emmy-worthy 'Justified' star Margo Martindale), it might be worth a second look.

Prudom: DVR It
Remember when Izzie's hot, dead fiancé Denny started visiting her and imparting wisdom (and sex) on 'Grey's Anatomy'? That's pretty much the premise of this show. Still, the concept is intriguing enough to set it apart from every generic medical drama on TV. I'll give it a second look.

'How to Be a Gentleman''How to Be a Gentleman'
[Get the synopsis & watch a preview here]
Ryan: DVR It
It's a slight premise -- average Joe teaches preppy guy to be more dude-like -- but it wasn't terrible.

Furlong: Skip It
One of the most painful comedy pilots of the season, and there was some stiff competition. Just. Plain. Horrible.

Bentley: Skip It
Well, it's better than all the man-centric ABC pilots. If you choose to DVR it, that would be acceptable, too.

Harnick: Skip it
That's all.

Moaba: Skip It
Watching a show that utilizes a laugh track when it's painfully unfunny feels about as awkward as the main character of 'How to be a Gentleman' trying to talk to a woman. Kevin Dillon gets a few chuckles, but it's not enough to carry the show.

Potts: Skip It
David Hornsby, Dave Foley, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Rhys Darby, Kevin Dillon ... great cast, but they're wasted in this broad comedy, where the phrase "penis cancer" gets a big laugh.

Prudom: Skip It
Totally not my demographic. Kevin Dillon doesn't venture far outside his Johnny Drama comfort zone in this odd-couple guy comedy, and David Hornsby is too shrill to enjoy as the lead character.

'Person of Interest''Person of Interest'
[Get the synopsis & watch a preview here]
Ryan: DVR It
I wanted to like this -- it stars Michael Emerson of 'Lost,' after all -- but the premise seems half-baked and the execution feels forced.

Furlong: DVR It
My better (often smarter) half loved this CBS procedural, so I'm sure we'll check in again. I can't say I was floored with Michael Emerson's first post-'Lost' offering, but it did make me appreciate Jim Caviezel.

Bentley: Skip It
I really wanted to love this, but I still don't really get what was happening. Even with the awesome cast, I'm going to pass.

Harnick: DVR It
I'm still fuzzy on some of the details that were never explained in the pilot, but this is straight procedural fun at times. With that said, I wanted to like it more than I did.

Potts: DVR It
'Lost' star Michael Emerson definitely brings the Ben Linus mysterious vibe to the J.J. Abrams-produced drama. The pilot leaves a lot about the pair's personal histories to be discovered, but mostly the show feels like it's going to become a procedural-type series you can drop in and out of, i.e. the perfect DVR show.

Prudom: Watch It
Another thriller bearing J.J. Abrams' exec-producer title, 'Person of Interest' is smart, slick and engaging from the first minute. Jim Caviezel is a convincing sharp-suited vigilante, while Michael Emerson gives a compelling performance as Caviezel's enigmatic billionaire benefactor.

'Unforgettable''Unforgettable'
[Get the synopsis & watch a preview here]
Ryan: Skip It
Eh. A detective drama with a gimmick, one that would grow tiresome by episode 3.

Furlong: DVR It
Like the cast, enjoyed the pilot, totally not my style, but I'll give it another go.

Bentley: Skip It
A completely average twist on the procedural format CBS does so well. My parents will probably watch it.

Harnick: Skip It (for now)
I wanted to like this, but I wasn't completely sold. I may check it out again.

Potts: DVR It
You should be sure your show can live up to its title when you name it 'Unforgettable.' Poppy Montgomery and Dylan Walsh have enough chemistry that I'd be willing to give the show another look, but ... well, it's a tough title to live up to.

Prudom: DVR It
For me, this will be a Skip It, because I'm not a fan of procedurals, but CBS' core audience will find 'Unforgettable' a competent (if safe) crime drama, and a bright, attractive lead in Poppy Montgomery as the former detective with the photographic memory.


Read our pilot snap judgments for ABC and Fox here, and keep up with all things Fall TV at aoltv.com

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ywn696

2 Broke Girls is AWFUL! Tiresome, predictable sitcom that could have been written by a 10 year old. Yeah, it pushed then envelope with some raunchy jokes but so what? What happened to clever, intelligent writing like we used to see on shows like Taxi, Cheers, Big Bang Theory , 2.5 Men, Everybody Loves Raymond and Seinfeld? The crap we are seeing on network TV these days is an insult to the intelligence.

October 24 2011 at 2:01 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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