New 2014-15 TV: FOX [VIDEO]

Fox_logoIn the wake of the annual television Upfronts, all of the major networks have announced which television series are staying, which are going, and what new fare we’ll be able to feast our eyes on for the 2014-15 season. And after pouring over all of the trailers for the new material, I have compiled a list of series you need to not miss.

FOX’s penchant for the flashy continues with these four monster projects.

Gotham is a Batman prequel of sorts, following Office Gordon on his rise to police commissioner. We’ll see Bruce Wayne’s parents get murdered and uncover the origins of comic legends Catwoman, The Penguin, and The Joker. Hieroglyph, due to arrive sometime in 2015, is a mythical/political mystery thriller taking place in ancient Egypt. EMPIRE stars reteams Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson in the world of the music industry. And they’ll be mighty foes as they battle over the fate of his record company.

But perhaps the most mammoth undertaking is new reality show Utopia, a show that sounds like Big Brother and Survivor has a radioactively altered baby. The yearlong series will chronicle a group of Americans as they build their own society on 3 acres. No rules but the ones they make. And cameras will be rolling on feeds to capture it all.

Check out the synopses and trailers below.

FOX

Gotham

LOGLINE: Before there was Batman, there was GOTHAM. Everyone knows the name Commissioner Gordon. He is one of the crime world’s greatest foes, a man whose reputation is synonymous with law and order. But what is known of Gordon’s story and his rise from rookie detective to Police Commissioner? What did it take to navigate the multiple layers of corruption that secretly ruled Gotham City, the spawning ground of the world’s most iconic villains? And what circumstances created them – the larger-than-life personas who would become Catwoman, The Penguin, The Riddler, Two-Face and The Joker? GOTHAM is an origin story of the great DC Comics Super-Villains and vigilantes, revealing an entirely new chapter that has never been told. From executive producer/writer Bruno Heller (“The Mentalist,” “Rome”), GOTHAM follows one cop’s rise through a dangerously corrupt city teetering on the edge of evil, and chronicles the birth of one of the most popular super heroes of our time. Growing up in Gotham City’s surrounding suburbs, JAMES GORDON romanticized the city as a glamorous and exciting metropolis where his late father once served as a successful district attorney. Now, two weeks into his new job as a Gotham City detective and engaged to his beloved fiancée, BARBARA KEAN, Gordon is living his dream — even as he hopes to restore the city back to the pure version he remembers it was as a kid. Brave, honest and ready to prove himself, the newly minted detective is partnered with the brash, but shrewd police legend HARVEY BULLOCK, as the two stumble upon the city’s highest-profile case ever: the murder of local billionaires Thomas and Martha Wayne. At the scene of the crime, Gordon meets the sole survivor: the Waynes’ hauntingly intense 12-year-old son, BRUCE, toward whom the young detective feels an inexplicable kinship. Moved by the boy’s profound loss, Gordon vows to catch the killer. As he navigates the often-underhanded politics of Gotham’s criminal justice system, Gordon will confront imposing gang boss FISH MOONEY, and many of the characters who will become some of fiction’s most renowned, enduring villains, including a teenaged SELINA KYLE/the future CATWOMAN and OSWALD COBBLEPOT/THE PENGUIN. While the crime drama will follow Gordon’s turbulent and singular rise through the Gotham City police department, led by Police Captain SARAH ESSEN, it also will focus on the unlikely friendship Gordon forms with the young heir to the Wayne fortune, who is being raised by his unflappable butler, ALFRED. It is a friendship that will last them all of their lives, playing a crucial role in helping the young boy eventually become the crusader he’s destined to be. Based upon characters published by DC Entertainment.

CAST: Ben McKenzie, Erin Richards, Donal Logue, David Mazouz, Jada Pinkett Smith, Camren Bicondova, Robin Lord Taylor, Zabryna Guevara, Sean Pertwee, Drew Powell, Cory Michael Smith.

 

Utopia

From unscripted mastermind John de Mol, and based on the hit Dutch television series of the same name, comes television’s biggest social experiment, UTOPIA.

Since the dawn of time, humans have always wondered: does a perfect world exist? Now, we get the chance to build one. Will it be ultimate happiness or utter chaos?

Fifteen pioneering Americans leave their everyday lives and move to an isolated, undeveloped location – for an entire year – where they are challenged to create their own civilization from scratch.

With no existing power structures and limited amenities, these “pioneers” will be faced with rewriting the rules. Will they choose democracy or dictatorship? Fidelity or free love? Will they punish or forgive? Choose religion or rationalism? Share with others or hoard for themselves? What conflicts will emerge, what leaders will arise? What principles will guide their daily lives and inform their deepest decisions?

As the Utopians build the new society, every decision counts. Each must try to become indispensable to the group, or risk being exiled to their former lives and replaced by potential newcomers from the viewing audience who have been vying to join.

With cameras following the pioneers 24/7, viewers can watch their society unfold, both weekly on FOX and also online. As they observe the inhabitants living together, and building their new existence, viewers themselves will have the chance to become a valuable and powerful asset to the community, and ultimately to question whether Utopia remains an elusive but alluring fantasy, or whether the pioneers have truly realized their dream.

http://youtu.be/e3fu7j02Mks

 

EMPIRE

LOGLINE: From Academy Award nominee Lee Daniels (“Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” “Precious”) and Emmy Award winner Danny Strong (“Lee Daniels’ The Butler,” “Game Change”), comes EMPIRE, a sexy and powerful new drama about the head of a music empire whose three sons and ex-wife all battle for his throne. LUCIOUS LYON is the king of hip-hop. An immensely talented artist, the CEO of Empire Entertainment and a former street thug, his reign has been unchallenged for years. But all that changes, when he learns he has a disease that is going to render him crippled and incapacitated in a matter of three years. The clock is ticking, and he must groom one of his three sons to take over his crowning achievement, without destroying his already fractured family. Lucious’ favorite is his youngest son, HAKEEM, a gifted musician and a spoiled playboy who values fame over hard work. The middle son, JAMAL, is a sensitive soul and a musical prodigy who, unlike Hakeem, shies away from the spotlight. Jamal also happens to be gay, which infuriates and embarrasses his father. ANDRE, the eldest son, is CFO of Empire Entertainment. Wharton-educated with a brilliant business mind, Andre lacks the charisma that Lucious believes is crucial to running the company. But in his quest for power, Andre is assisted by his manipulative and like-minded wife, RHONDA. As Lucious prompts his sons to vie for the empire, his plans are thrown into chaos when his ex-wife, COOKIE, mysteriously emerges seven years early from prison, where she’s been for almost two decades. Brash and fearless, she sees herself as the sacrificial lamb who built this empire with Lucious and then took the fall for running the drugs that financed Lucious’ early career. For now, Lucious remains firmly in control of Empire Entertainment. He is attended to by his hard-working assistant, BECKY, and relies on longtime friend and Chairman of the Board VERNON TURNER for advice and support. He relies on a whole lot more from ANIKA GIBBONS, the head of A&R for Empire, and his current girlfriend. As the Lyons slug it out, an emotional chess game begins that will either cause the family’s destruction or redemption. Lives and loves will be lost as the complicated family will come together and fall apart over the elusive throne, all set to an original soundtrack written and produced by legendary hip-hop hitmaker Timbaland. Will the family unite and learn to love each other before it’s too late? Love, war, family, sacrifice, money and music: this is the story of the Lyons’ EMPIRE.

CAST: Terrence Howard, Taraji P. Henson, Jussie Smollet, Bryshere Y. Gray, Timothy “Timbaland” Mosley, Malik Yoba, Gabourey Sidibe, Trai Byers, Grace Gealey, Kaitlin Doubleday

http://youtu.be/dBzu_jKLJek

 

Hieroglyph

LOGLINE: The world of ancient Egypt – a time of magic, Pharaohs, gods and thieves – lives again in HIEROGLYPH, an exciting action-adventure series from creator/executive producer Travis Beacham (“Pacific Rim,” “Clash of the Titans”). When a dangerous scroll, The Book of Thresholds, is stolen from Egypt’s most secure vault, master thief AMBROSE is plucked from prison to track down the perpetrator. Having spent the past five years in the darkest of pits, Ambrose quickly learns that his prison cell might be safer than the dangerous new world in which he finds himself: Atum, the empire’s capital. Ambrose must answer to Pharaoh SHAI KANAKHT, a god in the flesh, a young ruler with a cool charm and a violent, frightening temper. The question for Ambrose is not whether he can trust his new boss, but whether he can trust anyone. Also stalking the halls of the palace is NEFERTARI KANAKHT, half-sister to the Pharaoh, whose relationship with Shai’s closest advisor, MAGISTER BEK, masks her own designs for power. Finding few leads in the palace, Ambrose’s investigation takes him to the doorstep of his long-lost love, PESHET, a magic-wielding adoratrice, a type of homespun priestess who uses her femininity as a portal to the gods…for the right price. Peshet was the keystone in Ambrose’s merry band of thieves, an impressionable youth with great knowledge of magic, a woman who never saw a lock for which she didn’t have an unlocking charm. Five years later, Peshet has left her old life behind in a pious pursuit of divine contact. Ambrose’s journey also leads him to old friends, such as VOCIFER, a peddler of mystical wares and Ambrose’s mentor. But he also comes face-to-face with foes both old and new, from RAWSER, the Pharoah’s captain of the guard, who imprisoned him five years ago; to LOTUS TENRY, a palace concubine and spy for a rival kingdom. As Ambrose unravels the mystery of The Book of Thresholds, he begins to see the extent to which sorcery has seeped into the halls of power in ancient Egypt, and how close it is to causing this great civilization’s downfall.

CAST: Reece Ritchie, Kelsey Chow, Condola Rashad, John Rhys-Davies, Caroline Ford, Antony Bunsee, Max Brown, Hal Ozsan

http://youtu.be/JC2Nn0lPmfc

 

What do you think about these new shows from FOX?

 

Don’t miss our posts on ABCCBS, NBC, and The CW!

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Daren W. Jackson

Co-Founder/Editor
Daren is one half of the Water Cooler Convos team. He's a writer, music connoisseur, and comic book geek who spends his free time working on his novel and other short stories.