JJ. Abrams has moved to distance the level of serialization at play in his new sci-fi series Almost Human.
During a press set visit this week, the executive producer restated that the buddy cop show wont be as serialized as Fringe (note: neither was Fringe at first, though it always had ‘serial DNA’ – so the suggestion seems to be that Almost Human is less inherently serialized from the outset), while also citing the CBS serial-procedural Person Of Interest as the target model.
Per THR, he said:
“It feels very distinct from the world of Fringe, which was much more serialized show about this dysfunctional father-son, this romance that went over not just years but worlds,” he said. “This is a show that doesn’t quite get into that level of serialized storytelling.”
This show is going to take the model [of Person of Interest]. [Undercovers] was an attempt at doing a very fluffy, Hart to Hart-type show and sadly, due to my absolute inept skills, despite all the great work by many of the cast and my colleague Josh Reims, failed.
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‘”The truth is the show is being made for people who go, ‘I want to see a great procedural. I want to see a great crime drama, great characters in a very unique situations.’ That’s the thrust of what we’re trying to do here.”
Time will tell how much serialized ambition Almost Human ultimately has. Despite the rise of serial – and imaginative ways of infusing it under the noses of network TV bosses – procedural is still in vogue.
Amazingly, POI still has folks thinking to be an out-and-out procedural, can Human do the same while developing an ongoing mythology? How enjoyable will that be for die-hard serial heads who want to play in the Almost Human universe?
It’s going to be interesting to see how seriable it becomes, particularly in light of EP Naren Shankar‘s recent departure, who (as noted by@RickTerry) would have brought much of the procedural mindset to the table.