The Top 5 New Shows to Keep an Eye on During Pilot Season

3 – Blindspot

What happens when an unattended gym bag is left in Times Square? You call the bomb squad! But what about if someone crawls out of that bag, covered in tattoos and with no memory of who they are? You’ve got yourself a new hit procedural mystery!

Jaime Alexander (Lady Sif from Thor) is Jane Doe, the one with no memory, but her tattoos, which cover her body from head to toe, are telling a story. The first tattoo tells everyone to get her to Kurt Weller (Sullivan Stapleton), an FBI agent with a knack for catching the bad guy. Jane Doe may not know who she is or why she has these tattoos, but her muscle memory lets her know that she’s been trained as a special ops agent and she can kick ass. Her tattoos, on the other hand, are telling Agent Weller all about crimes he needs to uncover and solve that range from terrorist attacks to internal police investigations.

Yes, this is another buddy cop show, but it hides that fact with Jane Doe having no memory. The FBI agent hunts down criminals with her at his side while at the same time, they hunt for who she really is. The set up is pretty on point (despite Jane Doe crawling out of a gym bag in pristine make up), the cases are interesting and the mystery of Jane Doe, her tattoos and what they all mean make for some great storytelling.

This one also begs the question of how far can this concept go? While the cast is likeable and quite good at the roles they play (and the secrets they keep), a great cast can only propel you as far as good storytelling can. There was also an unfortunate section of the pilot where they constantly talked about people speaking ‘Chinese’, which made me hesitant about the skill of the writers room. But their skill seems to be working through their pandering to the uninformed to keep this one afloat.

I honestly never thought I’d get into a network procedural again, but this one has me setting my PVR every week! If nothing else, it will give you a solid season of enjoyment.

2 – Minority Report

TV continues to replicate Hollywood with its spin offs and reboots and sequels. This time, it’s the 2002 smash hit, Minority Report, that’s getting translated to the small screen. In this iteration, one of the pre-cogs from the movie, Dash (Stark Sands) now all grown up, has returned to his old stomping ground in an attempt to use what’s left of his powers to stop crime. He is befriend by Detective Lara Vega (Megan Good) whose credentials as a good cop is that she cares about her victims. Dash turns to her for help in stopping these crimes before they ever happen.

So, yet another ‘specialist helps cop’ show. I was curious to see how this turned out and, well, it turned out about as well as you think it would. Stark Sands (whose name sounds like it’s from a Game of Thrones spoof) is neither as charming, funny or endearing as Michael Ealy’s Dorian (Almost Human) or Nathan Fillion in Castle which are the two shows that are the closest in style to this one. Megan Good is fine as the straight man, but is definitely not strong enough to carry this show. As for the supporting cast, one of the leads is Wilmer Valderrama as tough guy cop, so that should really be an indicator of what you’re getting into.

There’s a lot of visual appeal going on and a pretty decent slow burn set up for the season arc, but the follow through on the week to week is downright silly. They seem to just be using the technology from the film and just making things up as they go as long as long as it somewhat resembles the same technology. Additionally, considering Almost Human was brutally axed last year, I can’t imagine anyone thought this show was worth the financial investment.

I know pilots are often the worst episodes of a show so I will give this one the obligatory 3 episodes to turn around and deliver me something I will watch week to week. Barring some miraculous changes to tone, characters, pacing and story though…