One of my favorite things about the end of summer (if you can have such a thing) is looking forward to fall television premieres! Nearly as much fun is guessing which ones won’t make it past a couple of episodes. But ultimately, there are always a few new shows that you really want to root for and that stand a good chance of making it. I’ve looked at some of those and have come up with a list of readalikes so that brand new fans can have an arsenal of new stories to discover. This is part I; look for the second half next week (click here).
A – Z (NBC) – Starring Cristin Miloti and Ben Feldman
A When Harry Met Sally-type comedy set at an online dating company, this is about the evolution of the relationship between Andrew and Zelda. Expect sweeping romantic gestures and office hijinks. Watch the trailer here.
- The Promise of Amazing by Robin Constantine
- Bright Before Sunrise by Tiffany Schmidt
- Meant To Be by Lauren Morrill
- Better Off Friends by Elizabeth Eulberg
- To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
Black-ish (ABC) – Starring Anthony Anderson, Laurence Fishburne, and Tracee Ellis Ross
This comedy is about an affluent African American family whose patriarch (Anderson) is uncomfortable when his children seem a little too assimilated and not in touch with black culture. Expect some hilarious missteps and misunderstandings, as well as some sly social commentary on socioeconomics. Watch the trailer here.
- Black Boy, White School by Brian F. Walker
- From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun by Jacqueline Woodson (1996 Best Books for Young Adults)
- The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie (2008 Best Books for Young Adults, 2009 Outstanding Books for the College Bound, 2010 Popular Paperbacks)
- Fresh Off the Boat by Melissa de la Cruz
- Mexican WhiteBoy by Matt de la PeÃ±a (2009 Best Books for Young Adults, 2013 Popular Paperbacks)
Emerald City (NBC)
Inspired by (what else?) The Wizard of Oz (more the film than the book), this show will center around 20-year-old Dorothy, who herself will be centered in the middle of a war between Oz and another kingdom. Think SyFy’s Tin Man.
- Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige
- Wicked by Gregory Maguire (2009 Outstanding Books for the College Bound)
- Fables series by Bill Willingham (2004 Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers)
Empire (Fox) – Starring Terence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, and Gabourey Sidibe
This drama is another entry into the current popular trend of musical TV shows. It is centered around a family-owned hip hop empire that must grapple with prison, homosexuality, and a debilitating illness. Watch the trailer here.
- Sister Mischief by Laura Goode
- It Chicks series by Tia Williams
- Harlem Hustle by Janet McDonald
- Pop Princess by Rachel Cohn
- Exile by Kevin Emerson
Gotham (Fox) – Starring Benjamin McKenzie and David Mazouz
Nobody seems to be tired of comic book adaptations yet, so this new series will explore the origin story of James Gordon, future ally of Batman. Expect a dark procedural with nods to future important characters of the original series. Watch the trailer here.
- any of a billion Batman comic books, of course
- Soon I Will Be Invincible by Austin Grossman
- Runaways series by Brian K. Vaughn (2006 Best Books for Young Adults, 2007 Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers)
- Moonshine by Alaya Dawn Johnson
- Infinite Crisis by Geoff Johns
iZombie (The CW) – Starring Rose McIver, Rahul Kohli, and Malcolm Goodwin
Another comic book adaptation, this series follows a zombie who works in a morgue so that she can have easy access to the brains she reluctantly eats. Then she starts to experience the memories of the corpses she consumes.
- The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting (2011 Best Fiction for Young Adults)
- Generation Dead by Dan Waters (2011 Popular Paperbacks)
- Beautiful Decay by Sylvia Lewis
- Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion
There are even more new TV shows to take a look at next week! What are you looking forward to this fall?
–Hannah GÃ³mez, currently reading Flygirl by Sherri L. Smith