Fall TV 2016 Preview: 10 Must-Watch Shows

Fall TV 2016 PreviewSeptember is here, and that means that soon the weather will begin cooling, the leaves will begin changing, and autumn will arrive. While it might be considered bad news for those summer-loving beachgoers out there, it’s a beautiful thing for TV watchers. Why? Because it means the fall TV schedule will soon kick-off.

Of course, we’re a very particular bunch when it comes to the nerdy shows we watch — after all, like you, we only have so many hours in the day to dedicate to our TV-watching hobby. With so many great sci-fi, fantasy, and superhero shows being popular, we have to cherry pick which ones we spend our time on (with every intention of catching up on some of the shows we might pass on right now during the offseason). Every year, we look forward to the new fall TV schedule, not only because of the return of some of our favorite shows but also because it means we just might be introduced to a brand new series that’s worthy of our time.

This autumn isn’t any different, as there are not only many popular series making their return but also many brand new shows making their debut. With that in mind, here’s our Fall TV 2016 preview of our 10 most anticipated shows of the upcoming season:

1. Westworld (HBO)

Premiere Date: Sunday, October 2, 9PM
Starring: Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, Thandie Newton, James Marsden

Our single most anticipated fall tv show on the schedule is HBO’s Westworld, their brand new sci-fi series based on the 1973 movie that was written and directed by Michael Crichton (the man also responsible for Jurassic ParkCongo, and Pirate Latitudes — some of my personal favorites). The series is being created by Jonathan Nolan (The Dark Knight) and Lisa Joy (Burn Notice), with J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burk also serving as executive producer. The series will follow the story of a futuristic theme park called Westworld, which brings about the dawn of artificial consciousness and “the future of sin”. Interestingly enough, Warner Bros. was originally planning to make this a remake of the movie instead, and they’ve been working on it since the early 1990s. Instead, HBO picked it up and opted to adapt it for television, and it looks like the right choice — at least if the first trailer is anything to go by.

The series looks to draw similarities to AMC’s Humans as far as questions of ethics and robots, although it looks like it will be covered in a much darker manner.

Most notable about the series is its stellar cast, which includes the likes of Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, and Thandie Newton. It looks like it’s certainly going to be a controversial and dark series, and it has already made headlines for its highly questionable shooting practices which involved extras agreeing to genital-to-genital touching and simulated sex acts. It just might be the case that Westworld ends up being too controversial for its own good and that viewers quickly lose interest. But with HBO promising to address the concern, it just might become their next big series.

Check out our Westworld review here.

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2. Luke Cage (Netflix)

Premiere Date: Friday, September 30, 12:01AM
Starring: Mike Colter, Mahershala Ali, Theo Rossi

One of the fall TV premieres that we’re most excited about isn’t on network or cable TV, but instead, it hails from streaming giant Netflix. Marvel’s Netflix shows (or Netflix’s Marvel shows, whichever you prefer) have all been incredible so far, with Daredevil and Jessica Jones impressing those who watch.

Luke Cage played a key role in the Jessica Jones series, and Marvel fans are awaiting his spin-off series, which will make its debut on September 30th at 12:01AM. Of course, one of the benefits of Luke Cage being on Netflix is that it means we can binge watch the entire season in its entirety at our own leisure, but you’d better believe we fully intend on having season 1 fully watched by Sunday, with a Luke Cage Season 1 review going live on that Monday.

3. Supergirl Season 2 (The CW)

fall tv 2016 preview

Premiere Date: Monday, October 10, 8PM
Starring: Melissa Benoist, Mehcad Brooks, Chyler Leigh

We were mildly concerned following the Supergirl Season 1 season finale when we didn’t hear any renewal plans by CBS. We started to sweat after a couple of weeks went by without any renewal news being announced. Luckily, The CW made the announcement that they would pick up the series from CBS and produce a second season of the new DC superhero series. Despite its middling ratings, Supergirl undeniably has a dedicated following, and we’re excited to see how The CW handles the series.

We’ve already seen our first look at Superman (which luckily will be more formidable than just a blurry figure) for the upcoming season, and details sprouted this morning about Calista Flockhart having a reduced role. With The CW handling Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow, and The Flash so well, the idea of them taking Supergirl to the next step is overwhelming.

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4. The Walking Dead Season 7 (AMC)

Premiere Date: Sunday, October 23, 9PM
Starring: Andrew Lincoln, Melissa McBride, Steven Yeun, Lauren Cohan, Danai Gurira, Chandler Riggs

AMC’s most popular TV series, The Walking Dead, will make its usual October season debut, with Season 7 debuting on October 23 at 9PM. Interestingly, AMC has moved the show to Saturdays at 9PM EST.

We’ll finally learn who Negan killed in the controversial season 6 finale, and after day-long debates and sleepless nights, we’ll be able to say neener-neener who believe we’re wrong in our prediction. Season 7 will also bring about the introduction of a fan-favorite character from the comic book series, a man by the name of Ezekiel, whom alongside Shiva (his tiger), is the ruler of The Kingdom.

Following the first Walking Dead Season 7 trailerit’s clear that the upcoming season is going to bring about a slew of changes for the highly-rated series. Here’s to hoping season 7 truly changes things up a bit and does more than just try to shock us.

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5. The Flash Season 3 (The CW)

Premiere Date: Tuesday, October 4, 8PM
Starring: Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Carlos Valdes

The Flash‘s popularity is at an all-time high, as season 2 was even better than season 1. So, it’s only logical to assume season 3 is going to be the best yet. Following the surprising season 2 finale, we’re not sure what to expect with the upcoming season in all honesty, though, since Barry and Nora appear to have a new life.

Of course, it likely won’t be long before the show gets back to business. Wally West and Jesse Wells will turn into their comic book versions after surviving the second explosion, and it’ll be interesting to see how they’ll make the transition. Admittedly, we’re not feeling the look of the newly revealed Kid Flash costume, but it’s not enough to keep us away from the upcoming fall premiere. We’re interested to see what direction season 3 takes — if we’ll see one central villain with numerous sub-villains (as has been the status quo so far), whether or not we’ll see other iterations of the Flash, etc.

If you’ve yet to watch season 1 and 2, you can binge-watch them both before the October 4th premiere with a Netflix subscription.

6. Son of Zorn (FOX)

Premiere Date: Sunday, September 25, 8:30PM
Starring: Jason Sudeikis, Tim Meadows, Cheryl Hines

There isn’t much new along the lines of animated series aimed at adults, but FOX is adding a new series by the name of Son of Zorn, created by Reed Agnew and Eli Jorne. Son of Zorn will be a live-action series with an animated main character, Zorn, a warrior from a faraway island in the Pacific Ocean who returns to California to win back his ex-wife and teenage son. Zorn, voiced by Jason Sudeikis, finds himself estranged from his son with his ex-wife now living the life of an upper middle-class mom. Zorn’s new setting means he’ll have to adjust to life in the suburbs by attempting to assimilate into society’s social norms.

A ridiculous, over-the-top animated warrior mixed into the real world has the potentially to be truly hilarious, and hopefully, FOX’s new series becomes an essential new element to their Sunday night Animation Domination block (which once included Family Guy and American Dad in their prime).

7. Van Helsing (Syfy)

Premiere Date: Friday, September 23, Time TBA
Starring: Kelly Overton, Jonathan Scarfe, Christopher Heyerdahl

SyFy has been on a role lately with most of their newer series being much more formidable than their past shows (examples: Killjoys, Dark Matter, and The Magicians). So, whenever they announce any new ideas, we’re excited. Their newest series is a Van Helsing series, but instead of following Abraham Van Helsing (like the movie) it will follow his daughter, Vanessa “Van” Helsing, after being resurrected in a post-apocalyptic world set in the near future.

The series will star Kelly Overton (Legends, True Blood) in the titular role, and she has the leading lady power to fuel this show’s popularity. We’re hoping Van Helsing won’t be just a one and done series, and the initial response stemming from the pilot episode (which aired on July 31) has generated more interest. In fact, we’re seeing 7.5’s and 8.0’s for its introductory episode, so there’s at least some potential for a great series, there. Here’s to hoping its first 13 episodes (the length of season 1) are as awesome as its first trailer.

8. Designated Survivor (ABC)

Premiere Date: Wednesday, September 21, 10:00PM
Starring: Kiefer Sutherland, Maggie Q, Natascha McElhone

Kiefer Sutherland’s 24: Live Another Day went much better than expected, and following its success, he’ll make his way back to television in a brand-new series by the name of Designated Survivor at ABC. The series will follow Tom Kirkman, a lower-level White House cabinet member who is appointed the “designated survivor”, a member of the cabinet who is taken away from the U.S. Capital building during the president’s State of the Union in case something catastrophic happens. Of course, it wouldn’t be a series if something awful didn’t happen, and that places Tom in the role of the unelected Commander in Chief. Is he up to the task?

Designated Survivor will also star Maggie Q of Nikita and The King of Fighters fame, as well as Natascha McElhone (Californication).

9. Timeless (NBC)

Premiere Date: Monday, October 3, 10:00PM
Starring: Abigail Spencer, Matt Lanter, Malcolm Barrett, Goran Višnjić

Time traveling always piques our interest here at Nerd Much, which is why we’re interested in NBC’s upcoming Timeless series. The series will follow an unlikely trio ( a soldier, a history professor, and a scientist) traveling through time to battle history’s criminals to protect today’s world. During the Television Critics Association summer press tour [via IGN], showrunners Shawn Ryan and Eric Kripke noted that the show is “much more like Back to the Future and Quantum Leap than it is like 12 Monkeys.” Time travel will be used as a device to allow for epic historical adventures. But the show will also have “important personal things” that will provide some more story elements.

The series will take place at some key historical events like the assassination of Lincoln, Las Vegas in 1962, Watergate, and more. Interestingly, the showrunners have also noted [via Deadline] that they won’t be sugarcoating history and will include a lot of race-related issues, noting that the show will also be a “really visceral grounded attack on history.” Luckily, we know that it won’t just be about the time travel, as there will be rules to traveling through time and space. For now, the only time travel rule that has been made known is that “you cannot go to any point that you exist.” We’ll be glued to our televisions on October 3 at 10:00PM for the fall premiere, followed by a review.

10. Frequency (The CW)

Premiere Date: Wednesday, October 5, 9:00PM
Starring: Peyton List, Riley Smith, Mekhi Phifer

Remember that Frequency movie from 2000 with Dennis Quaid and Jim Caviezel, where a cross-time radio link connected father and son across a 30-year span? Now, The CW will take inspiration from that movie for a brand new sci-fi series of the same name, created by Jeremy Carver of Supernatural and Being Human fame. The series will revolve around detective Raimy Sullivan (Peyton List) who finds that she’s able to talk to her deceased father, Frank, via ham radio. The two will work together on an unresolved murder case while complications arise from the buttery effect, changing Raimy’s life as she once knew it.

The Frequency series will follow Arrow on Wednesday nights this coming fall, and it looks like it’s going to be a new fast-paced series that will generate a lot of interest and discussions from viewers. Stay tuned to Nerd Much following the show’s fall premiere for our review.

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