HANDICAPPING THE NEW ABC SERIES
From Dan Fogelman, an average all-American family moves to the suburbs and ready to meet the neighbors. But there is one hitch: the neighbors are aliens. Jami Gertz and Lenny Venito star.
Wednesday 8:30 p.m.
-Lead-In: The Middle
-The Competition: Survivor (CBS), Guys With Kids (NBC), The X Factor (Fox), Arrow (CW)
-Who Was at the Panel:
Jami Gertz, Lenny Venito, Simon Templeman, Toks Olagundoye, Clara Mamet, Tim Jo; and executive producers Dan Fogelman, Aaron Kaplan, Chris Koch and Jeff Morton.
Dan Fogelman on the theme of The Neighbors:
“I want it to feel timeless. I grew up as a child of the ’80s. I grew up in The Cosby Show and Family Ties. And I think this show can be a throwback in that we’re exploring family issues in a very kind of family friendly way. I want this to be a show an entire family can sit and watch together. So in that regard, I think it is very contemporary in the humor.”
Added Jami Gertz:
“Our job is to make you laugh a little bit and forget your worries and maybe go to bed with a smile on your face and I know that sounds simplistic I have done my job well, and that gives me joy. I take personal joy from that. So that’s what we are trying to do. We are trying to give entertain and make people laugh, and I think we need a lot more of it.”
The critics, as expected, are not crowing with some already predicting The Neighbors to be the first new casualty of the season. If you saw the pilot, you would not blame them. But not every viewer…no offense…is a brain surgeon, so to speak, and something this idiotic could resonate if there is something funny about it. But there is not, unfortunately, and ABC moving The Neighbors out of the Modern Family lead-in spot into Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. (out of The Middle) could signal the network also has some concerns. Word of advice: Don’t get too used to The Neighbors.
-Chance of Survival for The Neighbors (Based on 1-1 to 10-1 odds):