POWERLESS — Pictured: “Powerless” Horizontal Key Art — (Photo by: NBCUniversal)
Debuts Thursday 7:30 pm | NBC
This exists somewhere within the DC Comics universe, and originally was a deadpan workplace comedy a la The Office, about an insurance firm that handled cases of civilians affected by superhero-vs.-supervillain battles. Now, it’s about Wayne Security (as in, Bruce Wayne Enterprises), a company specializing in tactical-tech personal-protection devices for non-super humans. It’s a faster-paced, colorful upgrade that the cast delivers on hysterically—when the material’s there. Unfortunately, the writing isn’t as consistent as NBC comedy breakouts Superstore and The Good Place, so it’ll have to be carried by its stars for now.
Santa Clarita Diet
Debuts Friday | Netflix
Netflix’s slow reveal of just what is the diet of Santa Clarita was a shrewd move, teasing with an appealing-odd actor combo and vague hints at suburban shenanigans. The plot-bomb finally dropped a few weeks ago: SoCal realtor couple Sheila (Drew Barrymore) and Joel’s (Timothy Olyphant) deadly-dull lives are upended when Sheila contracts a mild case of zombie-ism and a hunger for human flesh. Thing is, she’s never felt better, and life is a whole new, if murder-y, adventure. Santa Clarita Diet contains traces of Desperate Housewives, Dexter, Weeds and iZombie, but remains its own unique, bizarro thing.
Debuts Monday 8 pm | Fox
Even with 45 cop shows currently set there, Chicago is still a crime-ridden hellscape—will APB finally clean up this town? Probably not, but it’ll at least kill an hour after 24: Legacy. Much like (OK, exactly like) CBS’ now-canceled Pure Genius, ABP finds a tech billionaire (Justin Kirk) buying a failing enterprise and outfitting it with ultra-high-tech gear to save and/or end people. But for all its flashy screen grids, drones and the “game-changing” app, APB is just another cop show with an outsider consultant.
Debuts Wednesday 9 pm | FX
It’s an X-Men TV series… but not. Based on the Marvel comics, Legion follows David Haller (Dan Stevens), who was diagnosed as a schizophrenic as a child and has been in and out of psychiatric hospitals for decades. When a disturbing encounter with new patient (Rachel Keller) explodes his mind-numbed world, David realizes that his inner voices and visions are real. Like creator Noah Hawley’s previous FX hit, Fargo, Legion looks and feels outside of its defined time, more of an inward psychological trip than a blockbuster Marvel flick. Not that there isn’t action and comic relief, but don’t expect Wolverine.
Bill Frost writes about television for Salt Lake City Weekly.