Last year, that award went to Gina Rodriguez of the network’s “Jane the Virgin,” at the time a freshman series. (In 2015 The CW also appeared at TCA on the day of the Golden Globes.) This year it went to Rachel Bloom of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend,” a series currently in its first season. The Globes have been the subject of recurring ridicule for 35 years, ever since "entertainer" Pia Zadora was honored with an award for New Star of the Year for her “work” in the steamy and widely panned 1981 drama “Butterfly.” But sometimes the Hollywood Foreign Press Association gets it right in a way few other awards organizations do. That was certainly the case last year with Rodriguez and it is true again this time with Bloom.
I can only wonder about the comedies CW President Mark Pedowitz (pictured at top) and his team are developing for next season and whether or not they have their eyes on the prize for a third consecutive year.
Pedowitz appeared at the current TCA tour on Sunday (just a few hours before his second annual Globes triumph) to take questions about The CW’s current shows and the new series it is launching at midseason, including superhero adventure “D.C.’s Legends of Tomorrow” (an expansive companion series to the network’s “Arrow” and “The Flash” that might best be described as “Doctor Who” meets “Guardians of the Galaxy”) and biological/virus thriller “Containment,” which takes place in Atlanta, the same city in which much of the action took place during the first season of AMC’s “The Walking Dead.” (Make of that what you will, and pack your Purell next time you visit.)
In the best sight gag of this tour to date, CW Senior Vice President of Network Communications Paul Hewitt appeared on stage to introduce the “Containment” panel wearing a hazmat suit.
It has become something of a tradition during The CW’s days at the Winter TCA tours for the network and studio Warner Bros. to put together a panel filled with more actors who play superheroes than has ever before been seen at a TCA tour.
This was true last year when the combined casts of “The Flash” and “Arrow” were featured in one panel (pictured below).
It was true again this year with the actors who play the eight heroes and the one super villain in “Legends” (pictured below).
The superhero theme continued on Monday when Warner Bros. opened up the sets of the CBS superhero series “Supergirl” to TCA members. All four of these shows come from the very productive team at Berlanti Productions, a group of personable professionals who interact so easily with the press that they have reporters wondering why so many of their peers in the production community are so detached or difficult to work with.
Greg Berlanti and his crew are also developing for The CW yet another comic book franchise adaptation with “Riverdale,” a dark take on the bright and colorful Archie comics that is more in line with the horror comics Afterlife with Archie and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa (co-creator of the proposed series) than any other Archie efforts. When asked about the project, Pedowitz replied, “We have not yet picked the show up. We’re going to go through our pilot process shortly, probably starting next week.”
Even before its Globe win, “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” -- a show championed by most critics -- was the hot topic of the day. When on critic noted that even the Live+3 ratings for the show are “obviously pretty atrocious,” Pedowitz admirably did not dispute the point.
“At the moment, I wish I had more optimistic statistics or measurements,” he admitted. “I don’t. But what we do have is great faith in the show, great faith in the show-runner and creators Aline Brosh McKenna and Rachel Bloom. We believe in the show. We stand by the show. It’s the reason we ordered the back order. We believe there’s a place on our schedule today for a show like this, and we’re going to give it a chance to get seen. You can’t beat quality like this.
“So, for the moment, I don’t want to waste anyone’s time making up excuses,” he continued. “I wish the numbers were better. We all wish the people had found the show, but we have the goods and we have a quality Monday night with ‘Crazy Ex’ and ‘Jane the Virgin.’”
Of interest: The CW’s panel with the lead show-runners of “Jane the Virgin” and “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” – Jennie Synder Urman and Aline Brosh McKenna, respectively, was one of the liveliest of this tour to date. (Urman, left, and McKenna are pictured above.) Not a cricket was heard. That’s something all networks should keep in mind when putting together future TCA presentations.