Fall TV Preview

Is Unforgettable a Procedural To Remember? Our Fall TV First Impression:

The networks have more than 30 shows debuting this fall, including 2 Broke Girls, one New Girl, and Charlie’s fresh formation of Angels. To help you prepare for it all, TVLine is offering First Impressions based on the not-for-review pilots. Next up…

THE SHOW | CBS’ Unforgettable (Tuesdays at 10/9c, premiering Sept. 20)

THE COMPETITION | ABC’s Body of Proof, NBC’s Parenthood and FX’s Sons of Anarchy

THE CAST | Poppy Montgomery (Without a Trace), Dylan Walsh (Nip/Tuck), Michael Gaston (Jericho), Kevin Rankin (Friday Night Lights) and Daya Vaidya

TVLine’s Fall TV Premieres Calendar: Save the 101 Dates!

THE SET-UP | Carrie Wells (played by Montgomery) has hyperthymesia — or a super-duper, Marilu Henner-like memory. That made her a helluva cop at one time, but it also cost her a serious relationship. Walsh plays Al Burns, a NYPD detective who used to be Carrie’s partner back in Syracuse — and her aforementioned lover. When a neighbor of Carrie’s gets murdered in Queens, she and Al are reunited after a nine-year estrangement, and he enlists her mad skills to crack the case. Is this the start of another beautiful partnership? Oh, and irony alert: Carrie is haunted by the one memory she cannot piece together, involving the death of her sister when they were kids.

More of TVLine’s First Impressions: NBC’s Up All Night and The Playboy Club, Fox’s Terra Novaand New Girl, ABC’s Pan AmOnce Upon a Time and Charlie’s Angels, The CW’s Hart of DixieThe Secret Circle and Ringer, CBS’ 2 Broke Girls and Person of Interest

THE GOOD | Unforgettable — which at one stage carried the regrettable title of The Rememberer, I kid you not — does offer up a slightly new-ish take on the standard CBS procedural, as Carrie’s steel trap of a brain catches people in lies or culls crime-scene irregularities. Montgomery and Walsh deliver convincing banter as mutually scorned ex-lovers. Though not set in Syracuse (aka the home of my college alma mater), there’s enough name-checking to make an Orangeman proud. Montgomery is quite possibly the most attractive person on primetime TV this season.

THE… COULD-BE-BETTER | When Carrie “steps outside” herself to revisit her memory of a crime scene, yes, it gives us double the Poppy, but it’s 10 percent hokey. Plus, how often can she be a witness to that week’s case?…. I don’t have a refined ear for such things, but several critics have fixated on the Aussie Montgomery’s American accent…. Hey, why not set it in Syracuse? Plenty of bad stuff goes on upstate, trust me — especially when the men’s hoops team loses the title to a Keith Smart jump shot.

Fall TV Preview: TVLine’s Guide to All of the New Shows!

THE TVLINE BOTTOM LINE | Unforgettable doesn’t break any hugely new ground, but perhaps it doesn’t need to. For one, it’s capping a night fueled by the NCIS shows, so it’s thematically more on-point that Good Wife ever was in this time slot. Plus, it brings Montgomery and Walsh back to TV. Ultimately, success may be determined by who can retain more of their beefy lead-in: Unforgettable or ABC’s Body of Proof (which follows the Dancing With the Stars results show). Perhaps in CBS’ favor is the sparse buzz that the latest DWTS casting rumors have generated.

Watch a video preview for Unforgettable, then vote in our poll below.