Ok, so I was totally psyched about the new ABC show Invasion, and apparently ABC is too because they gave it the prime slot after Lost. But, I was watching the special extended preview of this show on my DirecTV TiVo and a big huge "uh oh" entered my mind. If you have seen the preview recently, say since Monday, then you probably know what I'm talking about. The premise of the show is that a hurricane hits Eden Florida (a small town near the Everglades). During the storm, mysterious lights appear on the water. After the storm passes, the town is cut off and a dubious sheriff (William Fichtner) takes control over the town in the wake of the emergency. The problem is that our country is currently experiencing one of its worst natural disasters - Hurricane Katrina. The promo for Invasion is very hurricane heavy, and a bit disturbing to watch in light of the tragedy in the Gulf states. I've scoured the internet, but I haven't found any indication that ABC is reworking the promos or delaying the premiere. When the show premieres on September 21st, almost a month will have passed since Katrina. But, the question is will viewers be able to stomach watching something so fresh on their minds? To be fair to Invasion, the rest of the show does not seem to deal with the hurricane, it's just the catalyst that gets the real premise going. A similar situation has occurred with another new ABC show. Commander In Chief, starring Geena Davis as the first female President, is scheduled to begin shooting an episode in which the President is dealing with the aftermath of a massive hurricane including evacuees and an environmental nightmare according to Beck/Smith Hollywood Exclusive. No word on whether ABC plans to scrap the episode before it even begins shooting or not.
As I said above, Invasion is not entirely about the hurricane. The show is another entry into the supernatural drama class this season. In this case, a destructive hurricane might not be just a hurricane. In fact, the show raises the possibility that hurricanes are part of an elaborate plan for aliens to take over Earth, at least according to one of the characters (Tyler Labine). His hypothesis is that there are aliens already living among us, and the lights from the "hurricane" triggered their call to action. It sounds somewhat familiar to anyone who saw the Steven Spielberg blockbuster War of the Worlds this summer, but in that case it was horrendous thunderstorms. The show has an interesting premise, and it raises some interesting questions, but it has some fierce competition, despite its plumb position after Lost. Not only does it face competition from timeslot rivals CSI: NY and Law & Order, but there's also the fact that every major network has their own supernatural drama headed to a TV near you this fall. Let the Invasion begin, indeed.
*The major broadcast networks are planning specials to help those affected by this week's tragic Hurricane Katrina that struck the Gulf States. First up, NBC will air the hour-long A Concert for Hurricane Relief hosted by Matt Lauer. Scheduled guests include Tim McGraw and New Orleans natives Wynton Marsalis and Harry Connick Jr. Funds will go to the American Red Cross. The special airs tomorrow night on NBC and sister networks MSNBC and CNBC. BET and fellow music channels MTV and VHI will air specials on September 9th and 10th, respectively. No guests have been confirmed for BET, but MTV is reporting Green Day, Gretchen Wilson, Ludacris, Rob Thomas, and Alicia Keys will all make appearances. And TVGuide.com is reporting that all six broadcast networks are planning a huge telethon to possibly air as soon as next week. New Orleans native Ellen DeGeneres is rumored to be hosting. Funds from all the telethons will benefit the victims of Katrina.
*Looks like there's going to be another Law & Order crossover per TVGuide.com. This time, between the original and SVU. Lynda Carter and Estella Warren will play mother and daughter on SVU and their storyline will carry over to the original Law & Order the following night. Look for the two- show story arc to air September 27th and 28th on NBC.
*The WB is releasing information on Everwood's fourth season premiere. The network's press release promises that Nina will make the decision between Jake (Scott Wolf) and Andy (Treat Williams). For more spoiler information on the premiere, visit The Futon Critic. The episode, called "A Kiss to Build a Dream On," airs September 29th in its new Thursday night timeslot on the WB.
That's all for today. Be sure to tune in tomorrow as we discuss the casualties of the past season. Are you starting to get weepy because some of your favorites are not coming back with the others this month? We'll discuss tomorrow. Plus, all the latest television news.