As the new fall TV season approaches, we'll be breaking down the biggest offerings from each network. Here's a look at highlights from ABC's fall 2011 lineup.
The ABC Fall TV Line-Up
The show that will make fairy tales the new superheroes
"Once Upon a Time"
When a small boy shows up out of the blue claiming to be the child she put up for adoption years earlier, a bail bonds collector named Emma Swan (Jennifer Morrison) is led to a small town populated by fairy tale characters like Jiminy Cricket and Rumplestiltskin - only they don't know they're really Jiminy Cricket and Rumplestiltskin, thanks to an evil queen's curse. In a parallel "fantasy" world, Snow White (Ginnifer Goodwin) and Prince Charming (Josh Dallas) struggle to free their kind from the spell, with Emma as the key. (Premieres Sunday, October 23)
Living proof that TV isn't immune to the remake bug
Charlie Townsend's butt-kicking crime stoppers have survived McG's big screen spoofing and have been reborn with a little more grit to go with the glamour. The new action-junkie trio are "Friday Night Lights" alum Minka Kelly, "General Hospital's" Annie Ilonzeh, and "Transformers" star Rachel Taylor. Following in the footsteps of David Doyle, Bill Murray, and Bernie Mac is Ramon Rodriquez as a younger, more shirtless Bosley. (Premieres Thursday, September 22)
The swinging 60s craze takes flight
Christina Ricci heads up this nostalgia-tinged ode to the "Jet Age." Set in 1963, "Pan Am" takes "Mad Men's" period chic and and sexual entanglements and throws in a heaping dose of Cold War espionage in these maybe-not-always-so-friendly skies. Series creators Jack Orman and Thomas Schlamme boast "ER," "Men of a Certain Age," "The West Wing," and "Parenthood" on their respective resumes, so anticipation is high. (Premieres Sunday, September 25)
A dish best served good-looking and wealthy
A young woman (Emily Van Camp) arrives in the Hamptons and instantly begins working her way into the lives of the rich and leisurely. However, she's harboring a dark secret, and isn't looking for a party as much as she's out for…well, you can probably guess. A gorgeous woman seeking vengeance on the overprivileged? Sure sounds like a meaty premise. The presence of veteran actress Madeleine Stowe ups the intrigue. (Premieres Wednesday, September 21)
The show that puts Tim Allen back in his comfort zone
"Last Man Standing"
"Toy Story" aside, movies have not been kind to Tim Allen. However, two things have been very, very kind to Allen: Unabashed manly boorishness and the sitcom format. Luckily, "Last Man Standing" has Allen playing a guy's guy who, this time around, has to contend with a house full of women. It's like a Bizarro "Home Improvement." (Premieres Tuesday, October 11)
The made-for-TV "Juno"
A single dad (Jeremy Sisto) who has been doing a decent job of raising his daughter (Emma Stone-alike Jane Levy) in New York City finally hits the wall when faced with the teen years. Scared and out of his depth, he moves them both to the suburbs amid soccer moms and manicured lawns. A lot of eye-rolling at all the utter uncoolness ensues. Comedy vets Cheryl Hines ("Curb Your Enthusiasm"), Alan Tudyk ("Dodgeball"), and Rex Lee ("Entourage") populate the 'burbs. (Premieres Wednesday, September 28)
Where women are women, and men are toddlers
Three perpetual man-children (Mather Zickel, Christopher Moynihan, and Dan Fogler) struggle with the concept of "being a man" while navigating a world of video games and manscaping. Amanda Detmer and Teri Polo ("Meet the Parents") play the out-of-their-league women who tolerate their toddler-like behavior. (Premieres Tuesday, October 18)
The mid-season replacement we're looking out for
Now here's a concept we can get behind: A TV version of the Liam Neeson thriller "Taken" starring Ashley Judd and "Game of Thrones" star Sean Bean. "Missing" stars Judd as a former CIA agent who learns that her son has gone missing while studying abroad. The boy's disappearance may have something to do with his father (played by Bean) who was murdered (?) years earlier. Veteran actor Cliff Curtis is on hand just in case you had any lingering doubts about watching.
The complete fall line-up, with new shows in bold:
8:00pm - Dancing with the Stars
10:00pm – Castle
8:00pm - Last Man Standing
8:30pm – Man Up
9:00pm – Dancing with the Stars [Results]
10:00pm – Body of Proof
8:00pm - The Middle
8:30pm - Suburgatory
9:00pm - Modern Family
9:30pm - Happy Endings
10:00pm - Revenge
8:00pm - Charlie's Angels
9:00pm - Grey's Anatomy
10:00pm - Private Practice
8:00pm - Extreme Makeover Home Edition
9:00pm - Shark Tank
10:00pm - 20/20
Saturday Night College Football
8:00pm - Once Upon a Time
9:00pm - Desperate Housewives
10:00pm - Pan Am
PopcornBiz will be posting previews of all four major networks this week. Check out our Fall TV Preview: NBC and stay tuned for CBS and Fox, coming soon.