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Our 10 Most Anticipated New Shows for Midseason 2012

Television's midseason might not come with as much hype and push as the start of the fall season of TV, but that doesn't mean it's full of Bosom Buddies repeats (don't be alarmed if you catch one, though; it's actually just ABC's Work It). There are plenty of high-quality baby shows calling early 2012 "mother"—here are the ones we're looking forward to most.

Frozen Planet Discovery Channel

10. Frozen Planet (Discovery)
When it's on: Sundays starting March 18
Who's in it: Nature What it's about: Educational television never looked better! This Discovery miniseries, which was co-produced by the BBC and comes from the creators of Planet Earth and Life, takes a look at some of the harshest ecosystems on the planet: the north and south poles. Note: This is a must-see in HD.

HBO Luck

9. Luck (HBO)
When it's on: Sundays starting January 29
Who's in it: Dustin Hoffman, Dennis Farina, John Ortiz, Nick Nolte, Michael Gambon, Kevin Dunn, Richard Kind
What it's about: Winners, losers, and everyone in between at a local horse-racing track.
Why we're excited about it: All you have to do is read the cast credits to get amped up about this show (but go ahead and also slap your behind with a riding crop if you need to). Dustin Hoffman, Deadwood creator David Milch, Hollywood hotshot director Michael Mann, Nick Nolte, and Dennis Farina are all involved in what's sure to be HBO's next critical hit.

GCB ABC

8. GCB (ABC)
When it's on: Sundays starting March 4
Who's in it: Leslie Bibb, Kristin Chenoweth, Annie Potts, Jennifer Aspen, Miriam Shor, Brad Beyer, Mark Deklin
What it's about: A Texas woman returns to her hometown to cat-fight and gossip and generally do all the things you want to see on television.
Why we're excited about it: ABC isn't exactly making its move toward female audiences a secret with primetime soaps, and GCB may be the most over-the-top of the bunch. It won't win any Emmys, but it's what we'll be talking about at work the next day.

Alcatraz Fox

7. Alcatraz (Fox)
When it's on: Mondays starting January 16
Who's in it: Sarah Jones, Jorge Garcia, Sam Neill, Parminder Nagra, Robert Forster
What it's about: Inmates and guards who went missing from the famous prison decades ago mysteriously reappear and start doing weird things.
Why we're excited about it: J.J. Abrams put his name on this project, so you know it's going to be more than just your everyday sci-fi drama. And with the Lost's Jorge Garcia and Sam Neill visiting our living rooms every week, it has our attention.

ABC Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23

6. Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 (ABC)
When it's on: TBD
Who's in it: Dreama Walker, Krysten Ritter, Eric Andre, Michael Blaiklock, and James Van Der Beek
What it's about: A woman from the country relocates to New York City and moves in with a sketchy party girl.
Why we're excited about it: ABC is currently on a hot streak with comedies, and we've had our eye on this ever since it was announced. Ummm... and James Van Der Beek plays himself. Plus it's, uhh... a bit crass. Okay, okay. Krysten Ritter. There. We admit it.

Awake NBC

5. Awake (NBC)
When it's on: TBD
Who's in it: Jason Isaacs, Steve Harris, Wilmer Valderrama, Laura Allen, Dylan Minnette, B.D. Wong, Cherry Jones
What it's about: A police detective gets in a car accident and wakes up to two different realities: one where his wife didn't survive the accident, and one where his son didn't survive the accident.
Why we're excited about it: This mind-bender comes from Kyle Killen, the creator of Lone Star, who loves to play with dual universes. It also happens to be the best pilot of the season. The only reason it isn't number one on this list is that NBC still hasn't scheduled it and there were reportedly problems with the production of its later episodes.

Touch Fox

4. Touch (Fox)
When it's on: Mondays starting March 19, with a preview January 25
Who's in it: Kiefer Sutherland, David Mazouz, Danny Glover, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Roxana Brusso, Karen David
What it's about: A father discovers that his mute son's gift with numbers is more than just a way to communicate.
Why we're excited about it: Creator Tim Kring (Heroes) is responsible for one of the best debut seasons of sci-fi in network history. (We won't talk about what happened after that.) Touch has the chance to combine mystery, spirituality, and fantasy in one... we just hope fans will respond.

House of Lies Showtime

3. House of Lies (Showtime)
When it's on: Sundays starting January 8
Who's in it: Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell, Ben Schwartz, Dawn Olivieri, Richard Schiff
What it's about: A consulting firm grifts corporate fat cats into overpaying for its services.
Why we're excited about it: Don Cheadle can act like no one's business, and we're always suckers for a steal-from-the-rich-and-give-to-the-less-rich storyline. That is, until we get rich. Plus, Kristen Bell is in her underwear in the trailer.

The River ABC

2. The River (ABC)
When it's on: Tuesdays starting February 7
Who's in it: Bruce Greenwood, Joe Anderson, Paul Balckthorne, Paulina Gaitan, Leslie Hope
What it's about: This found-footage horror show traces what happened to a rescue team that went searching for a missing adventurer/television personality.
Why we're excited about it: We're guessing something bad happened. This is legitimate horror on primetime television from the creator of Paranormal Activity, and for some reason everything is always scarier when it's seen through the lens of a camcorder. Plus, the pilot is awesome.

Smash NBC

1. Smash (NBC)
When it's on: Mondays starting February 6
Who's in it: Debra Messing, Brian D'Arcy James, Christian Borle, Katharine McPhee, Jack Davenport, Anjelica Huston, Uma Thurman
What it's about: The buzz for this musical drama is off the charts! And with a cast that confirms its quality, we're guessing this could be the next big hit that America falls in love with, even if it is on NBC.



Which new shows are you most looking forward to this midseason?

Comments (168)
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the following with james purefoy and kevin bacon sounds great and i like alkatraz
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How would all you critics feel about an online comedy reality TV show? Does this spark your interest?? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-__uI6haN0 love it or hate it, comment, share, thumbs up or down!
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My thoughts so far: AWAKE - definite spin on reality. Kinda makes you wonder what your life would have been like if someone that you love hadnt died. i.e. I would love to know what it would have been like if my mom hadnt died when I was 6. I believe my whole life would be different-the show is great, and it really makes you have to think about it hard to keep up with the swapping of the realities. TOUCH-I never saw 24 but heard it was great. Keifer is a terrific actor and from the pilot, he wont be disappointing here either. I am so excited I can hardly wait for the show to begin. Another "make u have to use your brain" show (I have to try to figure out how things tie together-a must). ALCATRAZ-so far it is a really good show-U must pay attention or you will get lost when the go back and forth between future and past-can be confusing at times-but I love a puzzle. It is already making me have questions; such as What makes them (convicts stay young looking and what does the boss have to do with it) GCB-not interested in another take on "Housewives" bickering, fighting, backbiting-I am sure there are writers out there that can come up with better than that. THE FIRM (not listed) should be cause it is one great show. period! The River- it is on when I have 2 other shows recording and watching a 3rd so I have obly seen 1 episode-seems interesting but I am kinda lost at this point. SMASH-Not interested in watching a musical every week. Debra Messing is wasting her talent here and I do not like Katherine McPhee at all. I really wish that they would stop taking all the good shows off just so they can air more episodes of American Idol. They always mess up the seasons best shows to air it. Gets aggravating! I have never heard of Apt 23, House of Lies or Luck (dont get HBO so I guess that is why) Love Dustin Hoffman so it is probably a good show. looking forward to this season.
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I really look forward to Alcatraz, Touch, awake and River..but i hope FOX or ABC will give new series like heroes long time ago..or maybe hancock movie can be a series hope...
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"Smash" in the #1 spot and I couldn't agree more. I took the liberty of downloading the pilot for free on iTunes, and that was a great decision. It's so good. The character work, the music, the performances, the drama. It's both realistic and entertaining. I'll be watching it again on the Feb. 6 premiere, and all the episodes after that. Gonna be an awesome series! http://itunes.apple.com/us/tv-season/smash-season-1/id492511667
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Quite a few fake scenes in Frozen planet. http://www.mirror.co.uk/celebs/tv/2011/12/13/frozen-planet-scandal-sir-david-attenborough-defends-fake-polar-bear-footage-115875-23631238/
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Glad to see Kiefer is back!

The River looks awesome!
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Krysten Ritter is the sketchy party girl, right? I don't see her as a relocated country girl.
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I had to do a Google search for GCB.
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Smash is number 1? :roll:
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Alcatraz, the river and dont trust the B look interesting...the rest seems kind of boring
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the river and Alcatraz and mabe touch the rest na
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Alcatraz, Awake and Touch are on my favourites.
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All these shows look pretty interesting, but I have to agree with the comment about Touch. I'm sure the show will be pretty good, with Kiefer and Danny starring, but it is Tim Kring afterall. I bailed out of Heroes halfway through season 3, because I knew the show would never get back to greatness of season 1. Part of the reason I knew this was because Kring kept making stupid excuses and kept writing letters apologizing to fans. He finally gave in on season 4 and just said it's too hard to come up with a direction. But people learn from their mistakes, and hopefully Kring can redeem himself with this show, but he's obviously going to be questioned about the failure of Heroes. People also seem to forget he helmed a show called Crossing Jordan, but I guess that wasn't anything special.
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FROZEN PLANET is running now on Portugal. 1st episode right now.
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lol!
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Frozen Planet, The River, Alcatraz...best trio ever!
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I saw the pilot of House of Cards and it's full of unlikable characters.

Time Kringe is doing Touch? Lets hope he doesn't ruin it like Heroes.

Smash looks wonderful.
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i need to know more about "Awake" anything with Jason Isaacs means i'll watch it!
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They all sound pretty good, surprisingly good. Dustin Hoffman is always awesome so I have to watch Luck even though the show seems kind of boring....Also Awake and Alcatraz, sucker for JJ and different universes. Then prolly Smash, never could resist a musical, hope it's good!

But as always, so little time, so many shows....
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I've never been as excited for anything as I am for Smash. Katharine is going to be amazing <3
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I will watch anything as long as it includes Jean-Ralphio winking.
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House of Lies, Touch, Alcatraz and Awake are on my watchlist.
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Well these all look pretty awesome in my opinion, midseason is looking like a keeper, especially smash, awake, and apt. 23 but might watch almost all if my schedule works
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Number 6 looks like it will be funny. Maybe check out 5,4, 7,and 3 because of Kristen Bell. None of the others sound good.
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Yes, quite a few shows that sound interesting to me: (2), (3), (4), (5), (7) and (10). Perhaps (1 - Smash) too. Wish Tim had written something about it.
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Excuse me, writer. What is 'Smash' about? If you write 'about', explain what the thing is about. Am I expecting to much?
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Musical Drama??? It says it pretty clear in the description.
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"Musical drama" is no more useful than "serious drama", "non-musical drama" or for that matter, "x-rated cartoon" or "amusing email". It doesn't say what all the musical drama is _ABOUT_.



It could be "musical drama about life on a potato farm" for all we know.



"Musical drama" is the _medium_, not the subject matter. "Musical drama", "sketch comedy", "epic love poem" and "Kool-Aid ice-sculpture" are all mediums.



"Animals who develop super-powers", "intergalactic poker tournament" "$h*! Betty White Says" and "life in a law firm of hexagenarians" are subjects.



There's a difference.
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I totally agree-that wasnt a description. having said that, I have seen enough of the previews that I dont want to watch it. As soon as my husband saw it was a musical, that would be it for the show on our tv anyway. I love Musicals (Mary Poppins, Sound of Music etc) but I dont want to watch them every week. I caught part of the show last week and was entirely Unimpressed. Debra Messing is definitely not in the right role. She can really act and she just seemed to have a uninteresting part in this one...she is totally wasted talent here.
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Its a musical! what do you think?!
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Awake sounds interesting. I'll also probably tune in to Don't Trust and House of Lies because I still really want to like Kirsten Bell.
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Awake and Smash.. oh, and Don't trust the B--- in Apartment 23 also sounds interesting
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House of Lies and Luck sound great. Couldn't give a crap about the others.
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Awake is the one I most want to see but I am excited to check out House of Lies, Smash and Don't trust the B
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What about The Firm?

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Awake and B in 23 - even though neither of them have launch dates yet :/
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What about iRob?
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I'll check out The River and maybe Awake. It's true, horror is always scarier through the view of a camcorder :P Also, I've never seen a horror tv show before.
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I'll watch House of Lies, Smash, Touch, and Apartment 23 (even though I'm not too fond of the idea of an actor playing himself regularly on a TV show).. and I'll probably watch GBC for Kristin Chenoweth and Leslie Bibb



just because Alcatraz is from JJ Abrams doesn't mean anything really unless he stays on fulltime which he won't. The premise is doesn't interest me at all, just another show that'll never have an ending. Also not interested in Awake, either "universe" will suck for him because somebody's dead
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The sneak previiew episode of Luck that HBO showed was the single best hour of television I've witnessed in years!
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heh, "Awake", "Alcatraz" and "Touch" will probably share the same fate as shows like "Journeyman" and "New Amsterdam" 'cause American Idol and it's clones are the only thing vapid enough to hold the attention spans of average tv viewers... maybe producers should think about throwing a shiny vampire or flamboyant singing teenager into every sci-fi show (even if they serve no purpose) just to grab the attentions of those who think watching 2 hours of prerecorded karaoke is a good way to spend an evening.
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I totally agree and it makes me so sad and angry that amazing shows get cancelled because viewers are too stupid to see the greatness that is right in front of them like Community but would watch several hours of mind numbing American Idol for hours a week again and again!
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Don't forget the season finale of Heroes season 1 was terrible. Tim Kring shouldn't be trusted :)
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Only reason I'm watching GCB is because David James Elliott is on it - and you don't even mention him as being IN it! Shame on you!
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Really Jose? How much do you earn as a spam bot?
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Can't believe I've never heard of Awake before, it's the most interesting sounding show on the list.
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Frozen Planet is great I saw it on the BBC, a must in HD though.
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Did you get to see ALL the episodes, including the one about Climate Change. The TV executives here were going DELETE IT because they think Americans will get all bent out of shape by even the mention that climate change might be real...
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It's not.
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Are you serious? Because if you are I feel bad for you
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Says you?
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Katharine McPhee back on TV - awesome. Alcatraz, Awake and the River for me.
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luck might be the one
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awake is the only one i'll be recording on the dvr.
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and maybe the frozen planet one if i remember it's on
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Honestly, I could have cared less about "Smash" until I heard about Jack Davenport being on it. SO, I am going to check out the pilot and give it a chance. I am very excited for "The River" and "House of Lies". I would watch Don Cheadle read a restaurant menu. I am not terribly sure about the others, but will probably give The Beotch in Apartment B a chance, as well as Awake and Alcatraz. Alcatraz, I have a feeling I will fizzle out on, just like I have on almost every Abrams show (ahem, Lost) but I look forward to seeing how everything goes. Could it be great, or terrible. Or great and then cancelled anyway?
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I'll watch frozen planet (because I'm severely addicted to nature shows) and Smash, which looks like a grown up version of Glee...hopefully with better writers
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Alcatraz, The River, Touch, and AWAKE.
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Please. "Smash" sounds awful. Looking forward to checking out Alcatraz, Touch and Awake.
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