When Carrie Bradshaw met Blair Waldorf…

As Gossip Girl heads towards its fifth season, even the most dedicated of fans must be coming to the realisation that this show cannot go on for ever.

Let’s face it, there are only so many times you can pair the same couples before each episodes feels like a horrible deja vu trip.

There has to be a limit to the number of times Serena can get pregnant / be drugged / fall for a bad boy / show her cleavage in an inappropriate situation.

We’ve already done murder, suicide attempts, kidnapping, fake cousinry, gay teen and fairytale endings.

Short of a nuclear apocalypse with Nate coming over all Jack Bauer-esque, or a plane crash which sends Blair into the hands of the Others and follows her struggle for supremacy, the show must not go on.

But it appears that even when the inevitable occurs, we will still be able to follow the exploits of a group of genetically blessed and deliciously caustic New York yoofs. Step in to scene, Sex and the City (the new class). According to Deadline:

“The CW has emerged as the leading candidate for The Carrie Diaries, a TV series project based on Sex and the City author Candice Bushnell’s recent book about Bradshaw’s high school years.

“There are no deals in place, and talks are in preliminary stages, but I hear that Warner Bros TV would produce and Gossip Girl executive producers Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage are being courted to shepherd the project through their Warner Bros TV-based Fake Empire banner. Former Sex and the City writer/producer Amy Harris, who is writing for Gossip Girl this season, will likely pen the adaptation.”

So, another scandalous show to attract the wrath of parental watchdogs. The fact is, most adult Sex and the City fans probably don’t want their favourite women tampered with.

I read The Carrie Diaries and it was bad. Really bad. Absurdly bad. And unless this show is set a couple of decades ago (i.e. without Blackberries, social networking and with pre-Hillary Clinton views on feminism) – a concept which would probably alienate plenty of viewers, I can’t see how this would work.

And yet. Gossip Girl is aimed at teenagers (I know, I buck the trend, what you gonna do?) so the demographic this adolescent SATC will be designed for probably won’t remember Carrie et al.

Sex and the City is the preserve of those of us born in the 1980s and before – the kids of the late 90s and the noughties probably haven’t been allowed to watch the reruns yet (at least, I seriously hope so).

Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda to rise again? If Josh Schwartz is on board, don’t bet against it.

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New TV shows on the menu

I’d like to pretend that as a mature 20-something with a full time job, I’d be over all those silly American shows of my childhood. But Dawson’s Creek is currently queued on my Sky Plus box, while I’m in mourning over the end of the Gossip Girl series (recap to come). Clearly, I still care.

But with Life Unexpected and Greek (two of my favourites) canned this year,it’s time to find something new to series-link.

Every May, the US television networks announce their “fall schedules” – translation, the list of the good, bad and often horrendous television series they will be showing from September. I’ve looked through them all and it seems a good list, although there are far, far too many Lost-wannabees and sitcoms hoping to jump on the Two and a Half Men publicity bandwagon, not to mention a healthy dose of supernatural adventures. (Note to Hollywood. Get over Twilight).

The good news (in my view) is that Gossip Girl has been renewed for a fifth year, meaning that it has outlived Josh Schwartz’s previous foray into the dark underbelly of the lives of the rich and glamorous.

But one cannot dine on Gossip Girl alone (seriously, all you’d be eating is waffles), so what else is on the menu?

Hart of Dixie:

Fast-talking New Yorker and brand new doctor Zoe Hart has it all figured out…but when her dreams fall apart, Zoe decides to accept an offer from a stranger, Dr. Harley Wilkes, to work with him at his small practice in Bluebell, Alabama.   She quickly finds that Southern hospitality isn’t always so hospitable.”

This sounds a lot like something that should be on the Hallmark channel, with characters in flowery dresses going to church all the time. It may well turn out to be, but the interesting thing about this is who is involved.

Rachel  (aka Summer Roberts) will star as the newly graduated doctor who finds a last-chance job in a stuck-up southern town and has to fight her way through inevitable bitchiness and rivalry and romantic drama. So far, so yawn. I bet she meets a gorgeous stranger who looks after, I bet the mean girl isn’t so mean after all. Original. Er, no.

But she’s reuniting with Schwarz and Savage on the show, the team behind both OC and Gossip Girl, so, while it sounds like soppy drivel, it has potential.

Ringer:

“A woman who, after witnessing a murder, goes on the run, hiding out by assuming the life of her wealthy identical twin sister – only to learn that her sister’s seemingly idyllic life is just as complicated and dangerous as the one she’s trying to leave behind.” 

This is a return to television for Sarah Michelle Geller or, if you were a TV-watching teen in the noughties and spent those years watching a small blonde girl battle (and occasionally romance) the genetically blessed undead, Buffy’s back!

However, judging by the summary, this isn’t Buffy at all. Identical twins? Life on the run? Wealthy? So far, so Sunset Beach.

Not that that’s such a bad thing. Sunset Beach had its charm (no, really, remember the demonic Jesus statue and the sinful shirtless priest? Exactly) But if you’re wanting a return to Joss Whedon’s smart and knowing pop-culture genius, I don’t think Ringer will be where you will find it.

But on the plus side, it also stars Nestor Carbonel (as in, freakish ageless eyeliner man from Lost). Speaking of Lost…

Alcatraz:

“From executive producer JJ Abrams…the chilling new thriller centered on America’s most infamous prison and one-time home to the nation’s most notorious murderers, rapists, kidnappers, thieves and arsonists. ”

And guess who it stars! Hurley.Well, no, Jorge Garcia, but, but Hurley is back!! Phew, too much excitement.

Basically, the idea is: what if those creepy Alcatraz maniac inmates disappeared, then reemerged in modern life without ageing? Huh? Sounds deep.

It could be very good. After all, everyone was a wee bit sceptical when JJ Abrams said he had a show about a mysterious island, a plane crash, and the survivors’ battle to get home. (Hello, why wouldn’t they just Tweet HELP ME?). And Lost was a runaway success, not to mention the most baffling and mindboggling piece of entertainment around.

But, then there were the polar bears, smoke monsters, bearded evils and French crazies hiding in the trees. For all Lost’s awesomeness, it required a helluva lot of patience and a passion for obscure sites like Lostpedia.

So, note to Alcatraz team. Avoid the temptation to put in every ludicrous idea you have, and just stick with the really, really good ones.

Oh, and don’t kill off anyone called Charlie, either.

2 Broke Girls:

“A comedy about two strikingly different young waitresses who form an unlikely friendship.”

 This show should be crud. The premise (metropolitan waitresses with baking business plan) is ridiculous and you just know that the girls will live ridiculously lavish lives that there’s no way they could ever afford if the title were true. Ref, Carrie in Sex and the City, Rachel in Friends, or anyone in what Hollywood imagines a minimum wage life to be.

Plus, it’s about baking. I bet they’re going to make it look really easy to make beautifully iced cupcakes and perfect pies. But they so won’t show the endless washing up once your cakes are in the oven, or the fight to get flour out of your hair, or the time the icing sugar packet breaks from both ends.

That said, Kat Dennings is awesome – both in the brilliant Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist and Charlie Bartlett. Great comic timing, realistic looks, hair that you just know goes frizzy when she walks out in the rain. So, definite potential.

Pan Am:

“Passion, jealousy and espionage… They do it all – and they do it at 30,000 feet. The style of the 1960s, the energy and excitement of the Jet Age and a drama full of sexy entanglements deliciously mesh in this thrilling and highly-original new series.”

Wednesday Adams (Christina Ricci) as fesity air hostess. Curious. You can imagine the production meetings where they came up with this.

Writer: “So, I have this idea. It’s a bit like Mad Men…” Money guy: “Sold.”

But I do adore Mad Men…


Gossip Girl is back…

… next week!

To get you ready for all the fun of part two of season three (and Getting Lippy’s weekly recaps) here is a trailer for Monday’s episode.

By the looks of things the next part of the season is going to be a stonker. From the preview it seems Barbie and Ken (aka Serena and Nate) will finally be getting up close and personal, while the Lily-had-an-affair-with-her-random-ex-husband story looks set to resolve itself. And Chuck will be facing his ghosts, rather literally if that scene at his mother’s grave was anything to go by.

According to producer Stephanie Savage “We’re turning up the heat on all of your couples in the second half of the season.” Well Well.

She also says, in the interview with E Online that they have “genuine options” about where to take the show.

So that could be, Jenny gives up the eyeliner and becomes an advocate of natural beauty, Blair starts to become a student lefty and live in a squat, Nate joins Mensa, or Georgina finds Jesus (oh wait…).

With ten episodes until the end of Season three, will any of those come true? Probably not, but good thing another series has already been confirmed.