Grab some Kleenex because you’ll be crying buckets this fall.
NBC’s tearjerker This Is Us continues to be a ratings wonder child, which proves that viewers are actively looking for shows with sympathetic and emotionally-charged narratives. In a TV pool filled with revivals and spinoffs, the colorful peacock’s most successful drama is all about a character-driven approach and a one-two, emotional punch to the gut.
So what does this mean for network TV? Well, it provides an avenue for heartier primetime dramas filled with ample twists and turns. Small-screen success is as much about increasing ratings as it is about garnering maximum waterworks from viewers. Given the unstoppable success of This Is Us, it’s not a surprise that other networks are looking to find a similar hit for themselves. When fall finally rolls around, you’ll find yourself fighting back tears and live-tweeting like a proper emotional wreck. Below, we have listed all the new fall 2018 shows that will make you weep as much as This Is Us.
1. A Million Little Things
Premiere date: Wednesday, September 26 at 10/9c on ABC
Cast: James Roday, David Giuntoli, Romany Malco, Ron Livingston, Christina Moses, Christina Ochoa, Allison Miller, Lizzy Greene, and Grace Park
Premise: A group of close-knit friends are either stuck in a rut or incapable of making significant changes in their lives. When one of them suddenly dies by suicide, it’s a major wake up call for all of them to get it together and start living up to their potential. Along the way, these lifelong friends discover that good friendships can make a huge difference when it’s a matter of life and death.
Why This Is Us fans will love it: If you’re looking for your heart to turn into an ooey-gooey mess, then look no further! You’ll be bawling and laughing at the same time because emotions can be confusing, and A Million Little Things will certainly put you through the ringer.
2. New Amsterdam
Premiere date: Tuesday, Sept.25 at 10/9c on NBC
Cast: Ryan Eggold, Janet Montgomery, Freema Agyeman, Anupam Kher, Tyler Labine, and Jocko Sims
Premise: The ingenious Dr. Max Goodwin is Bellevue Hospital’s newest medical director. What’s his goal? To tear down internal bureaucratic practices, so Bellevue can provide the best possible care to all its patients. Since Dr. Goodwin refuses to back down and rejects the status quo, he’s willing to go to great lengths to shake things up in this poorly funded and short-staffed hospital.
Why This Is Us fans will love it: Dr. Goodwin’s story is intriguing and his intentions are admirable. Watching him in action will be quite the treat, as he’ll inevitably butt heads and stir up a lot of tension at Bellevue. If you’re into heavy-laden drama, then New Amsterdam is the show for you!
3. Single Parents
Premiere date: Wednesday, September 26 at 9:30/8:30c on ABC
Cast: Taran Killam, Leighton Meester, Brad Garrett, Kimrie Lewis, Jake Choi, Marlow Barkley, Tyler Wladis, Devin Trey Campbell, and Grace Hazelett
Premise: A group of single parents lean on each other while raising their kids and trying to maintain some semblance of a personal life. Somewhere along the way, these parents have lost sight of who they are, but now they’re ready to practice self-care and lead a slightly less chaotic life.
Why This Is Us fans will love it: Sure, this will be a more lighthearted series, but what’s wrong with that? Sometimes you just need a good laugh because being a parent is hard! Single Parents will take you on a slightly nonsensical and heartwarming adventure that’ll make you laugh out loud whether you’re suffering from your own parental woes or not. Plus, it’s got a hefty dose of nostalgia thanks to familiar faces your favorite ’90s an ’00s shows.
4. The Rookie
Premiere date: Tuesday, October 16 at 9/8c on ABC
Cast: Nathan Fillion, Melissa O’Neil, Eric Winter, Richard T. Jones, Mercedes Mason, Afton Williamson, Titus Makin, and Alyssa Diaz
Premiere: The cop-themed dramedy centers around John Nolan, who is the oldest rookie in the LAPD. Nolan leaves behind his cushy, small-town life and moves to L.A., but things aren’t exactly as he imagined. Determined to make his second chance truly count, Nolan puts himself in dangerous and hilarious situations as he attempts to navigate the unpredictable world of the LAPD.
Why This Is Us fans will love it: It’s a show about the odd man out! Nolan is a character worth rooting for and one you’ll easily get invested in. Watching him evolve into a semi-badass is a journey worth taking because who doesn’t love rooting for the underdog? Plus, The Rookie is equally funny, dramatic, and inspiring which means it’s got everything you’re looking for in a weeknight, primetime series!
5. All American
Premiere date: Wednesday, October 10 at 9/8c on The CW
Cast: Daniel Ezra, Taye Diggs, Cody Christian, Samantha Logan, Monet Mazur, Karimah Westbrook, and Michael Evans Behling
Premise: Spencer James is a rising high school football player with straight A’s. Born and bred in Compton, Spencer’s life changes when he is recruited by Beverly High School’s football coach, Billy Baker. Now, Spencer must learn to navigate two very different worlds ⏤ his south-side neighborhood and the affluent, opportunity-filled Beverly Hills. Things become even more complicated when Spencer is forced to move in with Coach Baker and his family. All American is inspired by the real-life story of NFL player Spencer Paysinger.
Why This Is Us fans will love it: The new series boasts an impressive ensemble cast, so you can expect a lot of character-driven narratives. From love triangles, to gang violence, to complicated family dynamics, to socioeconomic barriers, All American won’t shy away from addressing difficult subject matters.
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