Fall TV Preview
Conviction PIlot Preview ABC

Fall TV First Impression: Conviction

The broadcast networks have nearly 20 shows debuting this fall, including new sitcoms from Kevin James and Matt LeBlanc, Kiefer Sutherland as POTUS and Michael Weatherly’s NCIS follow-up. To help you prep for it all, TVLine is offering First Impressions of the not-for-review pilots.

Next up on our list….

THE SHOW | ABC’s Conviction (Mondays at 10/9c, premiering Oct. 3)

THE COMPETITION | CBS’ Scorpion and NBC’s Timeless (new)

THE CAST | Hayley Atwell (Marvel’s Agent Carter), Eddie Cahill (CSI: NY), Shawn Ashmore (The Following), Merrin Dungey (Alias), Emily Kinney (The Walking Dead) and Manny Montana (Graceland)

THE SET-UP | “Bad girl” Hayes Morrison (Atwell) — a lawyer and former First Daughter — dodges a cocaine bust by agreeing to shepherd New York City DA Wayne Wallis’ (Cahill) new Conviction Integrity Unit, which investigates potentially erroneous incarcerations. Rounding out her team are the lawyer who thought he’d be leading the CIU (Ashmore), a former NYPD detective (Dungey), a paralegal (Kinney) and an ex-con forensics expert (Montana).

RELATED Fall TV Schedule 2016: What’s on When? And Versus What?

THE FIRST IMPRESSION | I have to imagine ABC was tempted to give Conviction (instead of Notorious) the delayed-until-midseason Scandal‘s Thursday time slot, given the shows’ similar “fixer” premises and flawed heroines; perhaps Conviction‘s more procedural nature was deemed more attractive to those looking for/missing Castle?

Atwell is obviously having a ball here, playing very much against her previous TV persona, but the pilot by design pits half of her team against her, which dulls the joy a bit. Maintaining and mining Hayes’ oft-inappropriate sass (Jessica Jones‘ Liz Friedman is a co-creator/writer) will be instrumental to making this show “pop,” while the development of distinct, Gladiator-y dynamics between the other CIU members will be what gets viewers more deeply invested/gives it any legs. I also predict the splashy casting of an additional romantic foil for Atwell, given the mixed messages the pilot sends about Hayes and the DA.

THE TVLINE BOTTOM LINE | Atwell has a big fan base, but will they forgive ABC’s axing of Agent Carter long enough to give her new, non-MCU project a look? With Scorpion getting a “head start” on premiere night (its two-hour opener begins at 9 pm, limiting any sampling of its 10 o’clock rivals), it may be a matter of whether Conviction or the genre-thriller Timeless makes the most of its beefy reality-TV lead-in.

MORE FIRST IMPRESSIONS | Fox’s Pitch, CBS’ Pure Genius, Fox’s Lethal Weapon, NBC’s This Is Us, ABC’s Designated Survivor, NBC’s Timeless, CBS’ Bull and ABC’s Notorious

Watch the trailer for ABC’s Conviction and then vote in our poll.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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54 Comments
  1. Shoe says:

    Dear Matt,
    After seeing the pilot for “Conviction,” will you finally join the fans of Agent Carter, who are in the midst of a campaign of contacting Netflix, to get our show a season 3?

  2. Kristine says:

    Well the preview pretty much spelled out the whole episode so you don’t really need to watch it. LOL. It intrigues me though so II’l check it out.

  3. Lucky says:

    Conviction and The Good Place are the two fall shows I’m looking forward to the most. I love Hayley Atwell and hope this show is a big success.

  4. LADY_in_MD says:

    I didn’t watch her on Agent Cater but I will check this out even though the first episode was pretty much spoiled in the trailer it looks good enough to watch and see if it will get a coveted Dvr spot this fall!
    Also I was wondering where I knew Eddie Cahill from and then saw he was Tag on Friends wow has he aged well!

  5. bluji says:

    Seems interesting. A bunch of actors who are familiar from other shows – promising. The team element and parts of the premise remind me of The Catch – also promising. Sure, I’ll check it out.

  6. Walker says:

    Well I LOVE HAYLEY ATWELL!!! Of course I’m Gonna Follow the Show and Hope it Rocks!

  7. Simon Jester says:

    “Atwell has a big fan base, but will they forgive ABC’s axing of Agent Carter long enough to give her new, non-MCU project a look?”
    .
    Nope.

    • Aimee says:

      You not watching will punish the actress more that the network. Just be glad they gave Ms. Atwell another show and you can still see her. Or, you know, just pout and be illogical about it.

      • Simon Jester says:

        I’m not going to watch a show that looks lousy because I like the actor. Sorry, but that’s the DEFINITION of illogical.

        • Aimee says:

          Fair enough. Nobody should watch a show they think is lousy. But…your original post was an answer to the question “will fans forgive ABC’s axing of Agent Carter long enough to give it a look.” you said Nope. If you had said “I’m not watching because it looks terrible” I would have been right there with you.

          I’m not trying to be a jerk. I just get so tired of folks saying “I’m never watching XYZ network again because they canceled my show” an all I can think is how you are hurting the actors and not the network.

      • brkastle says:

        I don’t watch cause of that, I hatted what ABC did and yes I will check it out but just cause someone has a fan base doesn’t mean a show will be good enough to last

  8. Joey Padron says:

    I will check out the show cause of Hayley and the cast.

  9. kirads09 says:

    I certainly will give Conviction a go. That being said, would much rather be looking forward to more Agent Carter instead.

  10. Kevin K says:

    WATCH IT. It’s going to be very tough in the 10 pm Monday night time slot this upcoming season but how will Conviction fare against Timeless (NBC) and the returning Scorpion (CBS)?

  11. Eric says:

    You should add a voting category of …when it comes to Netflix.

  12. Ksb36 says:

    Hayley is so good, I will watch her in anything!

  13. Max says:

    That preview just gave away the entire episode, so why watch it? As much as I enjoy Cahill, Ashmore, and Bess Armstrong; it’s not enough for me to tune in.

    • oldwillow38 says:

      The Upfront trailers are meant to give advertisers an idea of what the series is about. Just like in movie trailers, these TV trailers do not actually give away the actual plot of the episode. In literature there is only a about four dozen original plot lines and everything else is a variation. After 70 years of television everything has been done. If you think about it you can probably guest the plot before the first commercial break. Cast chemistry and talent is what is going to be the determining factor and that won’t be apparent in a three minute trailer.

      Cool about Bess Armstrong, I was wondering who was playing Atwell’s mother.

  14. Sivaro says:

    I’ll watch Hayley Atwell in anything! So I’m in. (Still hoping Agent Carter returns in some form)

  15. Liz says:

    I can’t shine that this show could be better than Agent Carter. From the trailer I don’t think there could be a worse female role model than Hayes. Peggy Carter was an amazing character… strong, kick ass, brave, sensitive, loving and not perfect. Hayes seems more like an anti hero and I’m so tired of seeing these in TV. We have enough sucky stuff in the real world. I prefer to escape into something good when I turn on the TV. I’m still very mad at ABC.

    I still hope that we can get a season 3 of Agent Carter to wrap up the missing links in the story on Netflix.

    • brkastle says:

      yep, from this it doesn’t seem like it will be worth the time but I have nothing better to see.

    • shir says:

      I’ with you. Mad at ABC. Can’t find it in my tv heart to get past that yet.
      Yes I’m poutty and unforgiving, but that is who I am.
      Hopefully, his show will make it. I wish the fans well.

  16. bethduffy95 says:

    I wish Scandal was cancelled. I’m over Shanda’s shows. They are all the same.

    • lechatnoir says:

      Escandalo is not going anywhere
      .it’s syndication material. The only shonda show that could be cancelledIis the mireille enos lead show

  17. lariet50 says:

    Love Hayley Atwell, but she’s literally the only appealing thing about this show for me. Pass.

  18. Katie says:

    While I occasionally catch Scorpion, Mondays are looking fairly open for me (Superstore is moving to Thursdays and The Magicians doesn’t return until later) — and on top of all that, I really like Conviction’s cast, so I’ll definitely be giving it a shot.

  19. Jasmin says:

    to be honest, i read through the new shows synopsis’ and cant say that i’m really excited about one of them (maybe the one with kevin james but that’s it)… i think it’s the first season that I don’t have one show I’m looking forward to see -.-‘

  20. Mary says:

    I miss Castle! ABC totally messed up what should have been a full cast final season 9. I’ll be following the virtual season 9 of Castle on Twitter :)

    • shir says:

      Mary, thank you so much for your comment.
      I was trying not to bring it up but since you did-I feel better about making a comment.
      I don’t know much about twitter but I will try to learn.

      ABC commeted that they were going in a new direction-well so am I.

  21. ndixit says:

    I like Atwell, but this just doesn’t look good. Her character seems like a very cliche ‘bad girl finds a heart’ type.

  22. Luis says:

    Maybe ABC cancels after two episodes and revives “AC” for the summer?

  23. JMill33 says:

    Hayley Atwell has me in for an episode or two, but the execution will need to be near perfect to get me to stick around, because the main character at the beginning of her arc looks detestable. I’ll need a big hook to care about her redemption.

  24. Carol C says:

    Looks good. I’m wanting to fill my Monday night Castle spot.

    • shir says:

      I’ll be filling my Monday night Castle spot but it won’t be with anything on ABC.

      Good luck to the fans of the show they put in its place.

      Hope it makes it because we all know what happens with the ABC network and the numbers with a new person at the helm.

  25. hank ronson says:

    Hayley is awesome and also the queen of dub smash

  26. Ace says:

    I don’t know. The cast is great, and I love Hayley Atwell, but this character doesn’t seem like someone I want to root for. I’ll give it an episode or two, but I’m skeptical.

  27. Suzan says:

    Is Shonda Rhimes involved in this production on any level? If so cant watch.

  28. Ally Oop says:

    I actually saw the first half hour of this pilot and I felt like the show itself was boring but Hayley Atwell is so likeable you want to watch.

  29. mrmcgee says:

    It’s good to see the Graceland alums working!

  30. This has the potential to be very good but could easily go very bad. I’ll definitely be checking it out but I’m not going to get too attached.

  31. Kate says:

    The cast is so great. I really, really hope it’s not just a straight up procedural.

  32. Kate says:

    This cast is so great. I really, really hope it’s not just a straight up procedural.

  33. Ash says:

    Loved Jessica Jones and love Atwell and the other cast members. I am in. I also don’t blame abc for canceling Agent Carter.It had bad ratings and killed any momentum Agents of SHIELD had in the fall. People should have watched Agent Carter live if they wanted in to survive. You have yourselves to blame, not abc.

  34. anne5x5 says:

    I am looking forward to watching more Hayley Atwell on television. Peggy Carter is a great character and showcased Ms. Atwell’s talent and range very well. I have been viewing her filmography and I have enjoyed much of her work especially “Pillers of the Earth” , “Black Mirror”, and the short film “Love, Hate”.

  35. after the shoulda coulda woulda seen captain america 1 in 2009,

    intentionally missing it thinking it would be crap,

    then seeing it later and realizing, it’s the best ever.

    she is made for agent carter.

    but man.

    the last season, the stupid barack obama scientist

    i mean. that show is KILLING her character.

    i still think she is a VERY VERY BEAUTIFULL (YESBEAUTI FULL!) woman,

    and hope she STAYS WITH THE MARVEL UNIVERSE AS HAYLEY.

    just can who is writing and directing / ion it. the show is killing her character.

    htm.

    :)

    only if i saw the film in ’09, in the theatres man.

    she’s got it!

    ~peace

    thomas :)

  36. shir says:

    Have no interest in whatever ABC tries to sell me anylonger.
    Much better off without watching.
    Lets see how long it takes before the new people at ABC decide the numbers are not there and send it on it’s way.
    If people like the new show-please enjoy what you get while its there.

  37. PatriciaLee says:

    I’m bummed about Agent Carter, but she can come back anytime between 1950 and 2016. Who knows, Disney might be using ABC as a tax write-off, but the doings of the big are beyond my control. I can only be grateful for what I do get from them. I am sure everyone at ABC is scrambling to produce the craft through the demands of finance and legal. I hold no hard feelings, and I will try out Conviction because she’s not a nasty bad person but a cool head of something, reforming her life.

  38. Diane DePaul says:

    Looking forward to new series Conviction. Cast is talented and plot sounds interesting. Big fan of Daniel Franzese. He’s real and does a lot of giving back. Good luck ABC!

  39. cathy says:

    like the show and most of the actors. But I think they need a new lead actress don’t like Hayley Atwell

  40. Anne Ng says:

    Enjoying episode 3 of Conviction: Dropping Bombs. The twists and turns are coming faster and faster. I want to know what Hayes Morrison (Atwell) is thinking. Hayley Atwell and Eddie Cahill are both doing a great job bringing Hayes and Conor to life. The two actors have considerable chemistry together. I like Conor Wallis (Cahill) more and more as a character. The supporting cast is doing a great job developing their own characters. Shawn Ashmore, as Sam Spencer, has been a standout.

    Glad to have Hayley Atwell Dubsmashing again on Instagram. Her goofy sense of humour has always been a welcome laugh on a stressful day. https://www.instagram.com/wellhayley/?hl=en