I’m back from the TCA press tour, but the show went on yesterday and Sunday at the Beverly Hilton, as CBS, The CW and Showtime presented their new fall shows (and some returning ones) to the nation’s TV critics and reporters. Here’s a roundup of some highlights:
* CBS’s president says Charlie Sheen‘s new FX sitcom is “not my cup of tea.” Did she ever watch Two and a Half Men?
* CBS is launching another Sherlock Holmes drama, Elementary, but it’s already resolved one mystery: though Watson is now a woman (Lucy Liu), there will be no canoodling. Also no Cumberbatch!
* Don’t count on learning how anyone met anyone’s mother this season.
* The CW is thinking about adapting Battle Royale, a Hunger Games–like Japanese novel in which kids shoot other kids, but says it would do so in a way that would be suitable for air—apparently, by no longer having kids kill other kids? I’m all for the precendent, since that would finally clear the way for Nick Jr. to adapt Lord of the Flies.
* Buffy memories die hard: The CW (which has the genes of the former WB and UPN, on which Buffy the Vampire Slayer aired) would love to make another show with former slayer/ringer Sarah Michelle Gellar. Meanwhile Joss Whedon’s Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog will have its TV debut on The CW Oct. 9.
* Showtime is saying goodbye to The Big C, Weeds and, probably Dexter. Easiest to have one big super-finale where Dexter simply kills off everyone.
* Claire Danes is pregnant, but in Homeland (returning Sept. 30) , Carrie will not be. I’ve seen the first episode of the new season, a strong one that picks up after Carrie’s shock treatment and takes an interesting turn or two that I won’t spill here—but read this report on the Homeland session if you want a few clues as to where the second season is heading. Don’t let this information fall into the wrong hands!