Love & Money Dept – TV Writing Deals for 12/19/13

Latest News About Writers Who Are Doing Better Than We Are

  • Wayne Beach (MURDER AT 1600) is writing the pilot for WGN America’s suspense drama, AMERICAN DREAM about a homicide cop trying to nail a mega-zillionaire CEO. (Sounds like a cool series…if only we knew who/what WGN America was. Anybody wanna google it and tell us?)
  • Kurt Sutter (a little thing called BREAKING BAD) is developing THE BASTARD EXECUTIONER as a series for Netflix. (Cuz he’s Kurt Sutter and he can damn well develop anything he wants to – and get paid. Yes, okay, we’re definitely eating our heart out here.)
  • Patrick Macmanus (MARCO POLO) is writing THE INN, a supernatural drama pilot for NBC. (A classic ghost story complete with a group of strangers gathered together in a weird hotel? Execution will be everything. Wait. Did we say “execution?” Maybe Kurt Sutter will join the process with his bastard?)
  • Matthew Perry (Yeah, that guy) is writing a new version of Neil Simon’s THE ODD COUPLE with Danny Jacobson (MAD ABOUT YOU). (Cuz God forbid Neil Simon should be allowed to put his stamp on his own creation. His style has been the basis for TV comedy for almost 50 years, but, you know, enough is enough.)
  • Chas Smith is adapting his book, Welcome to Paradise, Now To to Hell into a Fox 21 Productions cable series about crime/murder/adrenalin and – did you guess it? – surfing. (This one might be a little iffy, cuz you know what happened to the last big surfing series on cable. No? Google JOHN FROM CINCINATTI and you’ll sadly see.)

The Hudsonian Sees NBC’S GO ON

Go On Will Stay On

by Josh Hudson

The pilot episode of NBC’s “Go On” originally aired on August 8th, 2012 during NBC’s coverage of the Summer Olympics. It did well in the ratings.

Matthew Perry is back on television! No, this isn’t like when he starred in Studio 60 and the Sunset Strip or Mr. Sunshine. You see, the biggest difference is this show is actually good.

Go On is a story of a widower (Perry) who struggles to move on with his life in the wake of his wife’s death. He struggles showing emotion and sharing feelings and is ordered by his employers to partake in therapy sessions to cope with his grief. The catch is, he needs to attend a certain number of sessions before he’s even allowed to return to work.

Perry’s character, Ryan King, is a sports talk radio host in the mold of a present day Colin Cowherd. He’s opinionated, cocky, brash, and doesn’t hold back. It’s why his listeners love him. To him, therapy is for the weak. It especially rings true when he finds out that his therapist’s only qualifications are that she worked for Weight Watchers. He coerces her to sign his papers without actually sitting through the sessions because he feels that what he really needs is to drown his sorrows with work.

Nope. That didn’t help either.

After his first day back and an interview with Terrell Owens, we find out how his wife died. She was driving and texting. Not only texting, but also texting him. We see this translated in Owens’ exit from the station, as he’s texting while driving. King goes berserk, and begins throwing fruit at him. (Oh, someone gave him a fruit basket as a welcome back gift. It came in handy, apparently.) It’s at this moment that he realizes he needs therapy after all.

The script is great. The situations are great. And anyone who has lost someone close to them can relate to what Perry’s character is going through. My biggest fear after watching the pilot was that his life at work, and the great cast of characters in the office, would fall by the waste-side and all the focus would be on his relationship with his therapy group.

** I’ve seen the three episodes that followed this, and those fears have been put to rest. You too, may rest easy.**

This is a great offering from NBC, and you’d be a fool if you weren’t watching. Unless you’re like me and love FOX’s New Girl and ABC’s Happy Endings, in which case you and your DVR are going to have some battles deciding which show you’re going to watch since all three air at 9 EST. Lucky for us, Endings doesn’t begin until Late October, so all’s well in the meantime.

I applaud you, Bob Greenblatt, and NBC. Your Tuesday lineup is looking rather good. Now, if only you could fix your so-called Wednesday comedy block…