Greetings to the New Season: The CW – UPDATED

And so we come to the last of the big network upfronts…if, that is, you consider The CW to be a big network. I’m not saying I don’t, you understand. I just mean that there are still some people out there who haven’t yet accepted Fox as being a real network, so you can only imagine what they think of The CW.

But I digress.

Sort of.

It probably is worth noting that, unlike ABC, CBS, NBC, and, yes, even Fox, The CW held their upfront without providing photos, let alone videos, to accompany their new fall series…and since there are only two of them, you’d think they could’ve at least managed to throw together logos for them to serve as preliminary artwork. Instead, I’m stuck falling back on the tried and true network logo.

Yawn.

Okay, sorry, that really was a digression…and, as it turned out, a mostly unnecessary one, since the photos had appeared on The CW’s press site by 10:30 AM EST. Still, that was well after the press release about the fall schedule went out…a press release which, FYI, required two revisions due to various accidental omissions. I’m just saying.

Anyway, on with the show(s)…

MONDAY

8 – 9 PM: 90210

9 – 10 PM: Gossip Girl

TUESDAY

8 – 9 PM: One Tree Hill

9 – 10 PM: Life Unexpected

WEDNESDAY

8 – 9 PM: America’s Next Top Model

9 – 10 PM: Hellcats: a coming-of-age story about Marti Perkins, a young, pre-law student at Lancer University in Memphis, Tennessee. Marti is cool, hip and alt, but her world flips upside down, literally and figuratively, when she loses her scholarship, and realizes the only way she can stay in school is by reigniting her dormant teen gymnastic skills to win a place on Lancer’s legendary cheerleading team, The Hellcats. Against her every instinct, Marti goes for it and makes the squad, and is thrust into a world of camaraderie, backstabbing and the intersection of sports, backroom academia and big money.

Marti’s new roommate, Savannah Monroe, a petite, peppy Texan, is among the diverse cast of athletes, undergrads, family and friends, all set on the sprawling campus of a powerhouse college football program in the deep South. The series stars Aly Michalka as Marti Perkins, Ashley Tisdale as Savannah Monroe, Heather Hemmens as Alice Verdura, Robbie Jones as Lewis Flynn, Matt Barr as Dan Patch, with Sharon Leal as Vanessa Lodge and Gail O’Grady as Wanda Perkins. “Hellcats” is executive produced by Kevin Murphy (“Desperate Housewives”), Tom Welling (“Smallville”), and Allan Arkush (“Heroes,” “Crossing Jordan”). The pilot was directed by Arkush.

THURSDAY

8 – 9 PM: The Vampire Diaries

9 -10 PM: Nikita: When she was a deeply troubled teenager, Nikita was rescued from death row by a secret U.S. agency known only as Division, who faked her execution and told her she was being given a second chance to start a new life and serve her country. What they didn’t tell her was that she was being trained as a spy and assassin. Ultimately, Nikita was betrayed and her dreams shattered by the only people she thought she could trust. Now, after three years in hiding, Nikita is seeking retribution and making it clear to her former bosses that she will stop at nothing to expose and destroy their covert operation.

For the time being, however, Division continues to recruit and train other young people, erasing all evidence of their former lives and turning them into cold and efficient killers. One of these new recruits, Alex, is just beginning to understand what lies ahead for her and why the legendary Nikita made the desperate decision to run. The series stars Maggie Q as Nikita, Lyndsy Fonseca as Alex, Shane West as Michael, Aaron Stanford as Birkhoff, Ashton Holmes as Thom, Tiffany Hines as Jaden, with Melinda Clarke as Amanda and Xander Berkeley as Percy. “Nikita” is executive produced by Craig Silverstein (“Bones,” “K-Ville”), Danny Cannon (“CSI: Crime Scene Investigation,” “Chuck”), McG (“Supernatural,” “Chuck,” “The O.C.,” “Charlie’s Angels”), and Peter Johnson (“Supernatural,” “Chuck”). The pilot was directed by Cannon.

FRIDAY

8 – 9 PM: Smallville:

9 – 10 PM: Supernatural:

Canceled:

* Melrose Place
* Fly Girls
* High Society

New at midseason:

* Plain Jane: a new summer reality series that transforms one woman from the inside out to reveal a brand new woman. Each of the eight episodes will feature a new “Jane” searching for the change of a lifetime. With the help of British fashion expert Louise Roe (“Fashion Police: The 2009 Grammy Awards”), each Plain Jane will receive a head-to-toe style transformation, including new wardrobe and confidence-building exercises. Once the transformation is complete, the formerly Plain Jane will surprise her unsuspecting crush with the new look and reveal her true feelings to him. A love connection is – or isn’t – made. Hosted by Louise Roe, “Plain Jane” is executive produced by Allison Grodner (“Big Brother”), Rich Meehan (“Big Brother”) and Amy Palmer (“You’re Cut Off”).

* Shedding for the Wedding (tentative title): They are two of the most stressful things in life – planning a wedding and losing weight. Ten overweight engaged couples will live together and battle for the wedding of their dreams over a three-month period. Every episode, the couples will face off in a big physical challenge, competing to win one element of their wedding – from the invitations, to the cake, to the rings. Whatever they win will be theirs to keep. Together, they will plan their weddings with the help of the nation’s top wedding planners, they will take a vow to eat right and exercise, and world-class trainers and nutritionists will completely overhaul their bodies. At the end of each episode, the couples will step on the scale and be weighed together – the couple who lost the least amount of combined weight that week will be eliminated. In the end, one couple will win their fantasy wedding – a once-in-a-lifetime event – that America will attend. “Shedding for the Wedding” – again, this is a working title – is executive produced by Dave Broome (“The Biggest Loser”) and Rick Hurvitz (“Pimp My Ride”).

  

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