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Fall TV: Winter Has Come

Before the midseason shows start in January, Mandy C. and Emily discuss the best, the worst and the bestworst™ of the Fall 2013 TV season.

Fall TV: Winter Has Come

With the start of a new year looming, there’s no better time to look back at the year that was. And, in this case, we’re taking a look back at the new shows of the 2013 fall tv season (which we covered in great detail in our Fall TV series). Read on for our thoughts on the best, worst and bestworst (a.k.a. shows you know you shouldn’t Love with a capital L, but you do anyway) of fall’s fresh meat.

Best New Show:

Emily: Trophy Wife. Despite the horrible name and a rough pilot, this show makes me laugh every week. It's a new take on the "Modern Family" approach, this time with an adopted Asian son that is a guaranteed scene stealer (in the best way). There are no weak links in the cast. Bonus: a choreographed dance to "I Saw the Sign" in the mid-season finale. I might have watched it five times.

Honorable Mention: Sleepy Hollow

Mandy: Almost Human. I cannot get enough of the chemistry between John and Dorian. The storylines are a bit lacking and the secondary characters are total stereotypes—except for Rudy, he’s awesome—but I live for the conversations the detective and his partner have while driving to and from crime scenes. I have seriously high hopes that this show will stick around for a good long while, but it is a scifi show on Fox ...

Honorable Mentions: Sleepy Hollow, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Worst New Show:

Emily: Betrayal. Yawn. I watched two episodes and just couldn't do it. The whole premise just made me uncomfortable and there was not one character I wanted to root for. Who wants to watch a show where you hate everyone?

Mandy: Betrayal. It’s not exactly the most terrible show of the season, per se, but it’s certainly the most boring. I stopped being interested in Betrayal after two episodes, but then, I wasn’t really interested in it from the get-go. The sexy factor was high, but that’s not enough to sustain a show. I wasn’t a huge fan of any of the characters, and the plot lines seemed really contrived. I know that it’s a nighttime soap, but I’ve got a pretty healthy imagination, and Betrayal just felt flat.

Bestworst New Show:

Emily: Reign. I get this show is not even remotely historically accurate. I understand that people living in France in the mid-1500's did not have British accents. And the male leads do nothing for me … until they're hooking up with the female leads. OMG this show is hot!!! I cannot get enough. There's royalty, friendship, sex, betrayal, sword fighting, a ghost. What more can you ask for? Plus, when Mary and Francis are falling in love yet also trying to do what's best for their countries, I actually feel like real things are at stake … as opposed to normal teenage lust that can be so over-dramatic and boring. I am so into this.

Honorable Mention: The Tomorrow People

Mandy: It’s a tie between Reign and Witches of East End. Regardless of how terrible these shows are, how ridiculous the period inaccuracies get on Reign or how over the top the storylines are on Witches of East End, I get excited to watch these shows each week. And although I haven’t added them to my DVR’s list of auto-records, it’s not because I don’t want to—it’s because I share cable with my husband and he’d give me the side eye each time he saw them in the list of recorded shows. (I just watch them when he’s not around/watching football.)

Hottest Cast:

Emily: Hmmm. This is hard because I think Reign might be the hottest new show. There is some major sizzle between the cast. But outside of "those" scenes, the boys are a little lacking in sex appeal. So, I'm going to have to go with Witches of East End. The boys are sexy, the women are beautiful, and when you put them all together on screen there are some major fireworks. I 100 percent get why Freya can't choose between Dash and Killian. But when you go home to Channing Tatum every night, no one else really stands a chance.

Mandy: Sleepy Hollow. Tom Mison, Nicole Beharie, Katia Winter, Orlando Jones, John Cho. Occasional visits by Nicholas Gonzalez. A nice diverse group of pretty, pretty people. (John Cho’s even pretty when he’s dead and his neck looks like something out of a horror movie.)

Honorable Mentions: Almost Human, The Tomorrow People

Still Holding Out Hope:

Emily: Mom. It's got Allison Janney being awesome, so I refuse to stop watching it. There are moments of potential, some good laughs, and some almost-heartwarming scenes between three generations of mother/daughters … but just doesn't quite deliver in the way I want it to.

Honorable Mention: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (I think I've given up on this one. I'm waiting for someone to tell me to go back and watch … so far no one has.)

Mandy: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. You might not know this about me, but I’m a huge Agent Phil Coulson fan. I was really looking forward to this show, as I am also a Marvel and Whedon Family fan. However … I’m currently seven episodes behind (which means I’ve only watched three). There’s something that just hasn’t clicked for me with the characters—Fitz and Simmons are the only two other than Coulson that appeal to me, currently—and the “issue of the week” plotlines haven’t drawn me in. I’m still telling myself that I’ll catch up eventually, and that it’ll get better, but I’m not sold that it actually will.

And now, we’ll give you our predictions for the future, which, as we are both certified clairvoyants*, will be 100-percent accurate.

*Not true.

What Will Stick Around:

Emily: The Blacklist. I think this show will stick around for awhile. I'm not a huge procedural person, but there's enough of an overall story/mystery that has me hooked, and James Spader is awesome. I don't know if I buy Megan Boone as a kickass FBI Agent, but I like her so much that I don't care. Their relationship currently wins as my favorite odd-matched crime solving TV duo.

Mandy: The Blacklist. It’s not one we talked about in our series, but I really think this show has the most potential to go long-term. It’s suspenseful and intriguing and speaks to the masses because of a lack of scifi or fantasy elements (which makes me sad, in a way, even though I, too, enjoy it.) But please, something must. be. done. about Agent Keen’s horribly distracting wig.

What Will Die an Early Death:

Emily: Dracula. Do people care? Are people talking about it? It doesn't seem to be gaining much traction. Definitely never won my loyalty. Also, Hostages. I thought I would like this show, but it wasn't going anywhere fast enough for me and the characters weren't compelling in a way that made me want to care.

Mandy: Hostages. This show, too, totally lost my interest after only a couple of shows. I really liked the idea of a fast-paced rollercoaster ride of a suspense show, but that’s hard to do in 45 minutes each week. And how many times can someone “almost” kill the president until they’re found out?

Honorable Mention: Dracula

We’d love to hear what you think about the news shows. What’s your fave? What can you not go a week without watching? Which show did you give up on? Let us know in the comments!

Mandy Curtis's photo About the Author: Mandy is a small town girl living in a nerdy world, or—if you want to get literal—an editor/writer living in Austin, TX. In addition to yearning for YA books—the more dystopian or fantastical, the better—she can also be found swooning over superheroes, dreaming of The Doctor and grinning at GIFs.
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