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September 28 2004

Tim Minear gets new show on Fox. Variety (via Yahoo! News) reports that the Angel veteran will sign on as executive producer/showrunner for "The Inside", a high school undercover drama. Tim will be writing and filming a new pilot for the show.

And guess what day it'll air? Fridays! (at 8 PM EST)
Hey, does this mean we get a cool show with intelligent dialogue and interesting plots where there are consequences for past actions, and characters we come to know and love might actually die?

"High school undercover drama" sounds slightly like Veronica Mars (except I guess everyone at school knows Veronica works for her father so her cover's not all that under), and Tim kicks ass so chances are it'll be great no matter what it's about. Anyway, good for TM and may all be well as things go forward. I'll definitely be watching it, if and when it debuts, for the all of one or two episodes it'll probably last.

Cynical about Fox? Who, me?

(Seriously, I hope it can succeed in the currently stifling TV climate, but having my heart crushed one too many times has thrown shade on my formerly effusive level of enthusiasm where daring new shows on non-cable outlets are concerned. I'm still holding my breath for Lost as it is... C'mon, somebody convince I'm being too pessimistic. Please.)
Well, Lost got big ratings so it's safe for the time being. As for Tim's new series… well I like to think that with Arrested Develepment winning big at the Emmys, Firefly being made into a movie, and Wonderfalls coming out on DVD, FOX has learned its lesson. But I doubt it.
I've changed the link to the one at Yahoo! News so people can read it in full.
Wasn't this the plot of 21 Jump Street?
Here's hoping if Tim takes the job he doesn't get burnt for the 3rd time. They do say bad things come in 3s and with FOX involved then the shafting can't be too far away
I thought I remembered Tim saying in an interview after Wonderfalls got canceled that it was the last time he'd work with FOX - that he'd learned his lesson. He must feel this time around there's signficant support. Or, perhaps since it was already an idea they'd developed, and they specifically asked him to come in and fix the pilot (as opposed to him bringing them his own baby), he feels less emotionally attached. Either way, here's hoping the third time's a charm....
As desperately as I wish TM had a new show on the air, I wish it wasn't this particular show. Exactly how "troubled" does a high school have to be in order to deserve undercover police in the student ranks, listening, spying, and pretty much stomping on the few civil rights high school kids have?
I adore TM's work, but fear that the premise of the show will combine with the Fox Suit mindset and shackle his genius to cliche storylines, so while I can imagine a story where the cop finds himself *forced* to take the SATs to keep from blowing his cover (scary stuff indeed for adults!), what I fear I'll get is "desperate kids who are drug lords or pregnant or suicidal or unpopular or otherwise miserable because they're teenagers" stories. The kids will love that, I suppose, and it would be terrific to see TM have a series survive the giant axe, but I can't see it holding a mature audience's attention for very long.
Exactly how "troubled" does a high school have to be in order to deserve undercover police in the student ranks, listening, spying, and pretty much stomping on the few civil rights high school kids have?

Ooh, good point! Melisande, the first thing that came to my mind was 21 Jump Street too. Still, I think Tim's great so I'm hopeful he knows what he's doing.

And can anybody tell me what they mean by "ankled"? Completely clueless...
Yes Melisande, this is pretty much the exact plot of 21 Jump Street. Let's hope that Tim can do something fresh with it and that it doesn't get cancelled in 4 episodes.
Let's hope that Tim can do something fresh with it and that it doesn't get cancelled in 4 episodes.

This is Fox. Those two concepts are antithetical.
Wasn't this the plot of 21 Jump Street?

Indeed...and kind of like The Mod Squad, too. A tired, tired format. I won't be watching.

Of course, I don't watch anything except The Simpsons (and news and sports) anyway, so I'm not a good barometer, I suppose.
I thought I remembered Tim saying in an interview after Wonderfalls got canceled that it was the last time he'd work with FOX

He has a development deal with Fox.
With enough creative control, TM might be able to make the concept interesting. But if the show exists to create a "potential breakout star" instead of an interesting whole, I think it would become boring pretty fast. If he doesn’t sign, I’m sure they’ll just get someone else, so he might as well take the money and run. In a perfect world, his not signing would shelve the project-- thus allowing Mr Minear to be the one doing the screwing over this time.
"Ankled" means quit in Variety-speak.
And why do they call a show a "skein"? Makes me think of yarn.
I think that's why they call a show a skein. Spin a yarn, tell a story. That's what I assumed.
Umm, this isn't the same "undercover cop in high school" pilot that Nathan Fillion filmed last spring, is it?
No, that was something else.

ETA: I think that one was called "Hollywood Division" or something. "The Inside" is the one with Peter Facinelli.

[ edited by Invisible Green on 2004-09-28 19:45 ]
Wasn't this the plot of 21 Jump Street?

Ah. Another '80's TV show I missed (too busy studying at college and going out to see live music back then), hence my not catching the reference. Was this the series Johnny Depp was on?

I somehow figured that having a development deal meant that TM would have more control, or be able to pitch his own ideas. This doesn't really sound like something he would have picked on his own to me (not that I would know, just gut feeling). Does that mean he pitched a series idea (or two or three) that got shot down, or in a development deal at Fox, is it the usual thing for a writer to be handed a project originated by someone else?

Not that it's hard to believe or anything, but maybe straight-up TM is just too much for them to handle with the way things are these days.
The development deal means that he's expected to develop his own series, which Fox (Studio) can decide to produce or not. It also means that Fox can call him and ask him to fix other people's series' or help teach showrunning skillz to new producers (Greenwalt was brought in to teach a young baby Joss how to run a show, for example). Rewriting a pilot, or helping other talent develop an idea into a series is all part of it.
Love TM but 1. "undercover cops in school" 2. and on FOX ?!?! These two things practically guarantee cancellation. I don't think even a cute Johnny Depp clone could save it!
Yeah, this kinda' story is stale in concept and I doubt I'll find any interest in it even with the brilliance of TM at the helm. Still, it's good that FOX has shown an allegiance towards another former Joss Whedon's writers.

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