Everything old is new again as the major networks launch a fall season bursting with reboots. ABC is taking a second bite at blue-collar comedy with the now-Roseanne-free “The Connors,” and CBS has retooled versions of “Murphy Brown” and “Magnum P.I.”
We’ll also be watching familiar stars in new concepts, from Vicki Lawrence in “The Cool Kids” to “Bones” sidekick Nathan Fillion getting a starring turn in “The Rookie.”
Here are our top picks for new network shows.
‘All American’ (The CW)
The concept: Super Bowl champion linebacker Spencer Paysinger is the inspiration for this fish-out-of-water story about a kid from South Los Angeles, also named Spencer (Daniel Ezra), who’s recruited to play football at a Beverly Hills high school — and has to move in with his coach (Taye Diggs) to qualify.
Why it should be good: It’s “Friday Night Lights” meets “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” — what could go wrong? Seriously, the charming presence of Diggs gives us hope, as does the promise of showrunner April Blair (“Jane by Design”) to avoid simple stereotypes while exploring the lives of two families from different social classes. Also: This is still the CW, so: soapy, sexy.
Premieres: 8 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10, on Channel 61 (KASW).
‘The Cool Kids’ (Fox)
The concept: Vicki Lawrence, of “Mama’s Family” and “The Carol Burnett Show” fame, stars as a feisty woman who challenges the all-male clique (Martin Mull, David Alan Grier and Leslie Jordan) that rules the roost at her retirement home.
Why it should be good: Netflix proved there was a market for smart comedies about life after 70 with “Grace and Frankie,” and there’s no question that Lawrence knows how to create memorable comic characters. The show was created by the same team behind “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” so expect a dark edge.
Premieres: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 28, on Channel 10 (KSAZ).
‘I Feel Bad’ (NBC)
The concept: Indian-American writer/producer Aseem Batra drew on her own life in creating this series about a 40-something working mom (Sarayu Blue of “Sons of Tucson”) struggling to keep her self-esteem intact as she balances the unbalanceable.
Why it should be good: Shows like “Fresh Off the Boat” and “Master of None” are telling stories about Americans of Asian descent. And the fact that Amy Poehler is an executive producer should give you an idea of the irreverent, female-centered humor. In the pilot, our heroine, Emet, plaintively asks her male millennial underlings if she is still “doable.” (Spoiler alert: The answers aren’t very flattering.)
Premieres: 8 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19 (two episodes), on Channel 12 (KPNX). Regular time slot: 8:30 p.m. Thursdays starting Oct. 4.
The concept: Montego Air Flight 828 lands after a seemingly run-of-the-mill trip. We say “seemingly” because once the plane lands, the passengers learn that more than five years have passed. Their friends and family assumed they died. Now they try to integrate back into society, which isn’t as easy as it sounds. Of course, weird things start happening … as if disappearing for five years wasn’t weird enough.
Why it should be good: Robert Zemeckis serves as executive producer; it’s his first TV production in more than 20 years, so you figure something must have caught the attention of the Oscar winner (“Forrest Gump”). Then there’s the concept, which sounds like a cross between “Lost,” which everyone remembers, and two shows most people don’t: “Resurrection” (dead people reappear) and “The Returned” (ditto). Either way, we’re intrigued.
Premieres: 9 p.m. Monday, Sept. 24, on Channel 12.
‘Murphy Brown’ (CBS)
The concept: In its original 1988-1997 run, the show’s concept was firmly established. Murphy Brown (Candice Bergen) is a tough, no-nonsense TV journalist who appears on “FYI,” a “60 Minutes”-style news program. This reboot brings back Brown (and Bergen, naturally) and puts her in the 21st century. Just like in the original, she’ll grapple with the news of the day. That means #MeToo, fake news and (gulp) President Donald Trump.
Why it should be good: As well-remembered as the original show is, it also has its flaws. Let’s be honest: Like it’s main character, it was a little strident at times. But when the show focused on Murphy and her “FYI” family, it could be magic. Thankfully, the cast is mostly back: Grant Shaud, Faith Ford and Joe Regalbuto all return. Charles Kimbrough, stiff anchorman Jim Dial, is semi-retired, but he’s due back for three episodes. If the show keeps these characters and the warm relationship near the forefront, another long run could be in store.
Premieres: 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 27, on Channel 5 (KPHO).
‘The Rookie’ (ABC)
The concept: After a near-death experience, 40-year-old construction worker John Nolan decides it’s time to re-evaluate his life. That means joining the Los Angeles Police Department and becoming the oldest rookie on the force. It’s based on a true story, for what it’s worth.
Why it should be good: On the delightful “Castle,” Nathan Fillion spent eight seasons as Richard Castle, establishing that he’s one of the most charming and engaging presences on network TV. Now, he’s back, in show that comes from “Castle” showrunner Alexi Hawley. Can lightning strike twice? Does Fillion have a way with a one-liner? Or, as he tells TV Guide: “John Nolan and Richard Castle have the same amazing hair!” Hey, that’s a good start.
Premieres: 9 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16, on Channel 15 (KPNX).
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