Advertisers were given a sneak preview of ABC 2016 shows debuting this fall earlier today during the network’s upfront presentation. The spectacle began with a Quantico spoof video followed by a (lip-synced) song and dance number headed by the spy show’s star, Priyanka Chopra.
Upfronts are used as a way to ensure advertisers that investing in a particular network (in this case, ABC) is worth their time and money. While this upfront featured guest appearances by late-night show host Jimmy Kimmel (who made fun of the other network’s upfront presentations) and Kiefer Sutherland (who shared about his new 2016 show, Designated Survivor), most of the hosting duties were made by Channing Dungey, the new president of ABC Entertainment.
“Our new shows reflect the inclusive and empowering storytelling that defines the ABC brand,” said Dungey in a statement reported from The Wrap. “We will continue to raise the bar for our audience, investing in great storytellers and reflecting the authentic faces and voices of the world around us.”
With ABC’s new crop of 2016 shows, the highlights include Hayley Atwell’s Conviction. Atwell’s other show, Marvel’s Agent Carter, was officially given the axe just days ago. Her character on the new show couldn’t be any more different than the prim and proper Peggy Carter. The other big show is Designated Survivor starring Kiefer Sutherland who plays a cabinet member who suddenly becomes the president of the United States due to a terrorist bombing. Perhaps the weakest of the coming shows is the sitcom Imaginary Mary that stars Jenna Elfman, about a woman with a very loud imaginary friend.
The following are brief descriptions of the ABC 2016 shows and their official trailers for the fall.
Stars: Hayley Atwell (Marvel’s Agent Carter)
Airs: Mondays at 10:00 p.m.
ABC’s Description: “Lawyer and former First Daughter Hayes Morrison is about to accept a job offered from her sexy nemesis, NY District Attorney Wayne Wallis, to avoid jail time for cocaine possession and avoid hurting her mother’s Senate campaign. Working with his team at the new Conviction Integrity Unit will let her use her brilliant mind to turn over cases, where there is credible suspicion of wrongful conviction, and give her a chance to turn things around with her high-powered political family.”
Show: American Housewife
Stars: Katy Mixon (Mike and Molly)
Airs: Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m.
ABC’s Description: “Katie Otto is a confident, unapologetic wife and mother of three, raises her flawed family in the wealthy town of Westport, Connecticut, filled with ‘perfect’ mommies and their ‘perfect’ offspring.”
Stars: Minnie Driver and John Ross Bowie (The Big Bang Theory)
Airs: Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m.
ABC’s Description: “Maya DiMeo is a mom on a mission who will do anything for her husband, Jimmy, and kids Ray, Dylan, and JJ, her eldest son with special needs. As Maya fights injustices both real and imagined, the family works to make a new home for themselves and searches for just the right person to give JJ his ‘voice.'”
Show: Designated Survivor
Stars: Kiefer Sutherland (24)
ABC’s Description: “Tom Kirkman is a lower-level cabinet member who unexpectedly becomes president after a devastating attack on Washington. He will struggle to prevent the country and his own family from falling into chaos, as he is thrust into one of the most difficult presidencies in history.”
Airs: Wednesdays at 10:00 p.m.
Stars: Piper Perabo (Covert Affairs) and Daniel Sunjata (Graceland)
ABC’s Description: “Notorious is inspired by the true-life stories of famed criminal defense attorney Mark Geragos and cable news producer Wendy Walker, who serve as executive producers. The series is a provocative look at the unique, sexy and dangerous interplay of criminal law and the media. “
Airs: Thursdays at 9:00 p.m.
Show: Still Star-Crossed
Stars: Wade Briggs (Home and Away), Anthony Head, and Zuleikha Robinson
ABC’s Description: “Still Star-Crossed, a period drama from Shondaland, picks up where the famous story of Romeo and Juliet ends, charting the treachery, palace intrigue and ill-fated romances of the Montagues and Capulets in the wake of the young lovers’ tragic fate. The series is based on the book by Melinda Taub.”
Show: Time After Time
Stars: Freddie Stroma (Harry Potter), Josh Bowman (Revenge), Genesis Rodriguez (Big Hero 6), and Regina Taylor (Dig)
ABC’s Description: Based on the novel and movie Time After Time, executive producer/writer Kevin Williamson (The Vampire Diaries, Scream franchise, Dawson’s Creek) delivers a fantastical cat and mouse adventure through time when famed science fiction writer H.G. Wells is transported to modern day Manhattan in pursuit of Jack the Ripper. Once H.G. arrives in New York City, he finds a world he never thought possible and a young woman who captivates him.”
Show: Downward Dog
Stars: Allison Toman (Fargo) and Lucas Neff
ABC’s Description: “Based on the web series, Downward Dog is about a struggling millennial, Nan, from the point of view of her lonely and philosophical dog, Martin. One session at obedience school already makes them realize that even at their worst they may be the best thing for each other.”
Show: Imaginary Mary
Stars: Jenna Elfman (Dharma & Greg)
ABC’s Description: “Alice is a fiercely independent career woman whose life is turned upside-down when she meets the love of her life – a divorced father with three kids. This triggers even more upheaval when the slightly unhinged imaginary friend she created as a child suddenly reappears to help her navigate the transition from single girl to a woman ready for a family.”
[Image via ABC]