(Refresh for live blogging) Fox’s presentation starts off as traditional as it gets: with a promotional clip package and a parade on stage of the stars from the new and returning Fox series (sans Simon Cowell and Ryan Seacrest). Rapturous applause for Glee‘s Jane Lynch, House’s Hugh Laurie, and Family Guy‘s Seth MacFarlane.
After a sincere thank-you to Fox and advertisers for the support of House early in its run, Laurie introduces “Fox’s own chief diagnostician Jon Nesvig.” (He doesn’t even try to sell that joke.) Speaking of upfront traditions, Nesvig pulls out the good ol’ bar charts and spread sheets. After NBC abandoned those today, I was kinda hoping the other networks would follow suit.
Fox chairman Peter Rice makes the case for broadcast television, a trend that started last year, with broadcasting networks not taking shots at each other but toting broadcast as a whole.
Jane Lynch in character as Sue Sylvester comes out to introduce Fox’s entertainment president Kevin Reilly — or as she put it, “I was asked to whip that Kennedy brother into shape.” Lynch proceeds to comment on Reilly’s appearance while standing in front of a giant headshot of the smiling Fox executive. “He has been coasting on those shiny weatherman looks for too long,” Lynch says, drawing a big laugh. “Look at his hair. The last time I saw something that sweet and sticky, it came with a coffee and had jelly in it. And how many times a week does he bleach his teeth” She went on to introduce “Fox’s president of blah blah blah whatever, Kevin Reilly.”
One of Reilly’s opening lines is: “The complacency is genetically impossible at Fox.”
In one of the afternoon’s few surprises, the trailer for Fox’s summer/fall series The Good Guys plays very well. Fox might be onto something with that goofy Matt Nix series.
The trailer for new soap Lonestar is engaging and received good reaction. Star Jimmy Wolk has strong breakout potential. Greg Garcia’s Raising Hope looks cute. People seem to like it.
Shawn Ryan’s Ride-Along looks like a solid cop show, though probably not as groundbreaking as Ryan’s previous, The Shield. The Chicago backdrop looks pretty amazing.
We have a winner: the show to get the biggest applause (and laughs) is midseason comedy Mixed Signals. Trailer started off slow but got funnier by the minute. New animated comedy Bob’s Burgers was only mildly amusing.
Everyone seems to dig dinosaurs. Applause for a package with concept art and interviews for the new Steven Spielberg-produced prehistoric series Terra Nova.
More genetics talk in conciliation: “Fox is genetically wired to go for big swings,” Reilly says.
The cast of Glee winds down the show with Madonna’s Like a Prayer. Might there be lip-syncing? But a rousing performance nevertheless. People cheer and file out of the Beacon Theatre.