Friday, May 21, 2010

Network Upfronts 2010: And My First "A" Grade Goes To...The CW's Nikita!

This was my first time at a CW upfront, and here is what I will take away from it:

-It was very loud. I had to take an ibuprofen afterwards, I got such a headache.

-It was hip, young, fun. Katy Perry came out and performed "Hot N Cold" and "California Gurls." The latter will be the CW's theme song running all summer long. Katy also dropped the F bomb, and I wanted to shield the ears of the little girl sitting next to me.

-Who was the little girl sitting next to me? Only the daughter of the CW president of entertainment, Dawn Ostroff. Here's how I found out: Me, to the lady next to her: "Do you work for the network?" Lady: "No, but her mom does." Girl: "My mom does. My mom is Dawn Ostroff." Me: [jaw drops] "Yeah, you could say she works for the network!"

-Naomi from 90210 came onstage, and she was Well, it's five o'clock somewhere.

-Maggie Q, the star of Nikita, is adorable and funny: "I don't think any of you understand how good-looking it is backstage. It's really intimidating. I had to push the A-cups up a little bit." Love. Her.
The CW, for the first time ever, will have an all-original line-up this fall. That means no more reruns of America's Next Top Model on Friday nights. Crazy, huh? The network also tweaked its schedule so that compatible shows air on the same night: 90210 and Gossip Girl on Mondays, One Tree Hill and Life Unexpected on Tuesdays, etc. There was no mention of Melrose Place (R.I.P.). The schedule looks solid overall, and there weren't many holes to fill. I think this may be the CW's best year yet.

Here are their new shows (there are only two!):

Hellcats (Wednesdays at 9PM)--A cheerleading drama set in college. Think Bring It On. It's produced by Tom Welling of Smallville. Hellcats stars Aly Michalka and Ashley Tisdale, both from the Disney Channel. Aly is a pre-law student who loses her scholarship and then she finds out there is a cheerleading scholarship so she tries out for the team and makes it. It's a little contrived, that plot, but the show looks really good. Oh, and it also resurrects two people from One Tree Hill: Psycho Derek and Q. Grade: A-.

Nikita (Thursdays at 9PM)--An Asian-American headlining a TV show? Perish the thought! Maggie Q kicks some serious butt in this remake of the 1990 movie, La Femme Nikita (which spawned two remakes and a TV series). This is also the first time the role of Nikita has gone to a non-Caucasian actress. The show is about a female assassin trying to take down the government agency that trained and then betrayed her. If the show is anything like the preview we saw, the CW may have a huge, action-packed hit on its hands. Grade: A. (My first and only solid "A" grade for any show of the 2010-11 season. And it's on the freakin' CW.)

(Pictured: Maggie Q in Nikita. Sad about the departure of 24? Here's your new Jack Bauer.)

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