4 Random Plots TV Is About to Recycle the Hell Out Of

As we've pointed out before, it's not uncommon for different people in the entertainment industry to come up with the exact same crazy specific idea at the exact same time, possibly because they're all on the exact same cocaine/Red Bull combo.

That certainly seems to be the case with the current crop of new TV shows, some of which might make you wonder how they got greenlit once, let alone multiple times. Get ready to have your face-eyes repeatedly assaulted with premises like ...

#4. There Are Four Reality TV Shows About Magicians Coming

Hey, kids -- do you like magicians? We hope you do, because for some reason there are four freaking upcoming reality shows about these assholes. The first, which already aired its pilot on SyFy, is a Project Runway-style competition called Wizard Wars. Sadly that's "wars" in the Bride Wars sense and not the "making them actually kill each other" one. A similar show called Surprise Me, which has surprisingly already proved a hit with the usually unflappable Russia, will also be coming soon to the U.S. Both are about magicians competing in front of celebrity judges.

TV-3
Amateur magician Vladimir Putin won the first season by making gay rights disappear.

Meanwhile, TruTV's Undercover Magic is a hidden-camera show featuring Michael Carbonaro breaking people's hearts by convincing them briefly that they live in a world where self-lacing shoes are a thing. And finally, A&E has already started airing Don't Trust Andrew Mayne, where the titular untrustworthy magician (is there another kind?) plucks quarters from behind people's ears for revenge, some-fucking-how. You know in the Harry Potter books when the wizards declare war on humanity? It is here, but with sweaty desperation instead of dragons.

#3. Get Ready for More TV Remakes of Horror Movies

It looks like the success of Bates Motel has inspired producers to go balls-out on remaking other classic horror movies, digging up the graves of former screen glories to mine their rotting corpses for ideas. For instance, as if I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant wasn't terrifying enough, NBC will be broadcasting a four-part miniseries version of Rosemary's Baby this summer.

Lionsgate Television
Each episode is about Satan rounding a base.

A remake of The Exorcist is also in the works, and MTV is currently casting a pilot for Scream, because if the sequels proved anything, it's that this is a premise that resists being stretched past every logical point. What little information we have includes odd details like bi-curious sidekicks and viral YouTube videos, presumably included in the plot after a bunch of MTV executives compiled a list of "what the kids are into these days."

Dimension Films
This franchise should have died with Drew Barrymore's character.

#2. "Shows Based on Robert Rodriguez Films" Is Apparently a Genre Now

As with the horror movies, TV is turning again to past Hollywood successes, but this one is oddly specific. Robert Rodriguez has had a lustrous career as one of the few auteurs you can admit to liking ... except when it comes to his frequently awful multi-sequel franchises, so naturally nothing could go wrong with shoving his work in your face every week. Currently in development (by different companies) is a remake of not only El Mariachi, but also Sin City -- because that was so easy to adapt and shoehorning it into a weekly production schedule won't turn out sad at all.

Dark Horse Comics
"Luckily 70 percent of Frank Miller's dialogue is the word 'whores,' so it really saves time on scripting."

A remake of cult classic From Dusk Till Dawn has already premiered on Robert Rodriguez's own network. (The network is called El Rey, because of course it is.) Yeah, whatever. Call us when you turn Machete into the X-rated cartoon it was always meant to be.

#1. Three Pirate Series, Two of Them Set in the Exact Same Year and Location

TV is not about to let Disney flog the pirate craze to death all by itself, regardless of the fact that they already did, years ago. To that end, there are three pirate shows currently in development: In what sounds like the result of a game of Diversity Mad Libs filled out by Ron Burgundy, we have Red Flag, about a 19th century Chinese lady pirate hooker who ... holy shit, really existed? OK, that one sounds refreshingly unique, which can't be said for the other two shows scheduled to premiere this season -- both of which are set in the same year (1715) and the same location (New Providence, Bahamas).

NBCUniversal Television Distribution

Platinum Dunes
Looking forward to TNT's Anchor and Skinemax's Full Mast.

They insist, however, that they're totally different: Starz's Black Sails is a "gritty prequel to Treasure Island," while NBC's Crossbones is the true-life tale of Blackbeard, who just happens to be played by John goddamn Malkovich, so there's that. On the other hand, as Entertainment Weekly astutely points out, there's a pretty good chance the premium cable program will have full frontal. This might actually be a tough choice.


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