In addition to pilots that are not going to make it, NBC just started started notifying series that are getting cancelled. I hear among them is midseason drama Deception. NBC brass had been high on the soapy drama and especially its star Meagan Good and the freshman drew decent ratings, but in the end, Deception found it difficult to stand out in a crowded field while drawing constant parallels to ABC’s Revenge.
Ray Richmond is contributing to Deadline’s TCA coverage.
Given that a pair of its primary lead performers happen to be African American, it might seem logical to assume that the ethnicity of stars Meagan Good and Laz Alonso would be somehow interwoven into the storyline of the midseason NBC soap ensemble Deception (formerly Infamous) that premieres tomorrow night at 10. But this assumption would be wrong, as showrunner Liz Heldens stressed during an afternoon TCA panel. Good portrays a police detective investigating a possible homicide, while Alonso plays an FBI agent and her former flame. “I guess the way it all shook out, (the ethnicity of Good and Alonso) is a way of sort of dealing with race without actually having to talk about it,” Heldens said. “But it’s not something we really talk about too much in the writers room…I just think it is sort of there. I’m not sure what we could put in the characters’ mouths that would speak louder than the fact of what you’re looking at on-screen.” Heldens pointed out that there certainly was no specific intent to cast African Americans in the roles, but that when Good originally came in to read “she just walked in and owned it. It was fantastic.”
EXCLUSIVE: Law & Order alumna S. Epatha Merkerson is returning to NBC with a recurring role on the network’s upcoming drama series Deception. The show, from writer Liz Heldens, Universal TV and BermanBraun, is described as an opulent soap in which detective Joanna Padget (Meagan Good) returns undercover to the wealthy and troubled Bower family she grew up in — as the maid’s daughter — to solve the murder of the notorious heiress Vivian Bower who was once her closest friend. Emmy winner Merkerson, repped by ICM Partners and Bob McGowan, will play Joanna’s mom Beverly Padget, who worked for the Bowers family when Joanna was a young girl.
UPDATE: NBC Unveils Midseason Schedule — ‘Community’ Back On Thursday; ‘Smash’ To Tuesday; ’1600 Penn’, ‘Deception’ Slotted
UPDATED: NBC just released the bulk of its midseason schedule, its first lineup shepherded by new head of scheduling Jeff Bader. It features The Biggest Loser moving to Mondays (8-10 PM) to serve as a bridge between the two cycles of The Voice. Its companion will be midseason drama Deception (formerly Infamous), which will air at 10 PM.
NBC is gambling with a long hiatus for breakout hit Revolution, which will wrap its 10-episode fall run with a big cliffhanger in November before coming back with 12 originals on March 25, following the cycle premiere of The Voice as the two shows will once again be paired together.
With Revolution staying put, Smash, which aired behind The Voice last spring, is moving to Tuesdays, premiering February 5 from 9-11 PM before settling into its regular 10 PM slot the following week. It will be a test for the musical drama, which will have a more modest lead–comedies Go On and The New Normal — the voice The Voice last season. Smash will replace Parenthood, which will have completed its 15-episode season by then. Another new Tuesday addition in midseason is Betty White’s Off Their Rockers, which will return on January 8 with back-to-back episodes from 8-9 PM and will continue in that hour. It will bridge the two cycles of The Voice, which returns March 26.
Order is restored on Thursday as cult comedy Community returns to its 8 PM slot. The much-delayed fourth season of Community will premiere February 7. It is one of two midseason comedy additions to NBC’s Thursday lineup, along with newbie 1600 Penn, which is getting the post-Office 9:30 slot beginning January 10. The following week, Parks And Recreation, which currently airs at 9:30 PM, will move back to its old 8:30 PM berth.
NBC’s midseason mystery soap from writer Liz Heldens is changing its name again. Originally titled Notorious, the project was renamed to Infamous in May when it was picked up to series for midseason. Now NBC has settled on Deception as final title as it is reading a marketing campaign for the show, which doesn’t have a launch date yet. Deception, from Universal TV and BermanBraun, is described as an opulent soap in which a female detective (Meagan Good) returns undercover to the wealthy and troubled Lawson family she grew up in — as the maid’s daughter — to solve the murder of the notorious heiress Vivian Lawson who was once her closest friend. Co-starring are Victor Garber and Tate Donovan. Gail Berman, Lloyd Braun and Gene Stein executive produce with Heldens.