People in the entertainment industry are insufferable about forgetting any other line of work exists, so it's with a heavy heart that we must admit they've been hit harder than most by recent shelter-in-place orders. By its nature, entertainment requires crowds, if not in the audience, then on the stage/screen/grocery store displays of beer boxes/wherever they're performing. At least during the writer's strike in '07 networks could lean on reality TV, but even most of that is shut down. And despite what countless podcasters might think, "some guy alone in a room" isn't a very compelling premise. That's left them with only one option: Scrape the bottom of their barrel of scraps, as well as some other people's barrels.
Fox became the first network to announce their fall lineup this week, and things went off the rails immediately when their leading program was revealed to be a Bad Boys spin-off, but that's not even the most ominous part. LA's Finest, as it's called, has already filmed two seasons for Spectrum Originals, which is apparently a thing, one of which has already aired on the cable streaming platform. They're airing an already-aired show. From the beginning. As their leading program. And it's a Bad Boys spinoff networks already rejected. Gabrielle Union deserves better. They'll also be airing a season of Cosmos that was shelved last year following sexual misconduct allegations against Neil deGrasse Tyson, having apparently figured that viewers' pity for the network's position would outweigh any lingering distaste for Tyson, and they might be right.
The obvious solution is a glut of animated shows, so it's no surprise that the new offerings that don't require socially unacceptable levels of touching are also the only ones that sound even a little good. One is about a psychiatrist who is also a dog, and the other stars Nick Offerman as an Alaskan single dad named Beef. If that sentence doesn't give you some sliver of hope, check your heart, because that might be where the virus is attacking you first. We could very well be looking at an animation renaissance even better than we've seen in recent years, and shows that don't require months of production are still on the table, too. Don't worry: You'll still get to watch The Masked Singer every Wednesday.
Manna stars as an Alaskan single dad named Beef on Twitter.
Top image: Sony Pictures Television/Spectrum Originals