TNT Upfront Report: Revisiting Dallas, Introducing New Hits

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The Turner Entertainment Networks plunged into the middle of an upfronts week dominated by the broadcast networks. As Conan joked in an otherwise anemic monologue, TNT/TBS had to settle for a 9 a.m. slot across from Penn Station while CBS grabbed cocktail hour at Carnegie Hall.

But the Hammerstein Ballroom was lovely as the network paraded out their current stars and introduced us to what they hope will be upcoming favorites.

President Michael Wright touted the networks' "popcorn mindset" as a plan to "entertain and excite viewers, while taking them on a ride that lands them safely at the end."

Premiering Wednesday, June 13 has to be the most anticipated of the new series. The resurrection of the classic over-the-top family drama, Dallas couples fan favorites with the next generation of the feuding Ewing clan.

Along with J.R., Bobby, Sue Ellen and several other original cast members we'll enjoy Josh Henderson as John Ross III and Jesse Metcalfe as Christopher as this reboot moves the Ewing rivalry into the present with plenty of drama, intensity, and lots of eye candy.

Perception stars Eric McCormack as a neuroscientist who assists Rachel Leigh Cook's FBI agent to solve diabolical crimes. The twist…he's also a schizophrenic. If reality is a figment of your imagination, how do you know what's real. McCormack describes this as a procedural through the looking glass which premieres Monday, July 9.

Major Crimes will pick up where The Closer leaves off on Monday, August 13 with most of that show's cast crossing over perhaps not quite so happily as by the book cop Sharon Raydor takes over the squad's reigns. Can they all get along?

Finally TNT dives into competition TV with The Great Escape which dumps three couples in places such as a prison cell on Alcatraz Island. Each team fights to escape and the first to make it to their assigned destination earns the $100,000 prize. From the creators of the amazing race as well as producers Ron Howard and Brian Grazer expect plenty of adventure as the show debuts on Sunday, June 24th. 

Returning this summer TNT also has it's slate of original programs:

  • Rizzoli & Isles and Franklin & Bash both return on Tuesday, June 5.
  • Falling Skies two hour season premiere airs on Sunday, June 17.
  • The Closer returns with its final six episodes on Monday, July 9.
  • Leverage makes its season five comeback on Sunday, July 15.

As if that weren't enough, TNT will also fill your summer with newly syndicated Castle, Hawaii Five-0, and The Mentalist as complements to their own original series.

And they're still not done. Get ready for the 2013 return of the highly acclaimed cop drama Southland and the new docu-drama Boston Blue. Produced by Boston native Donnie Wahlberg, Boston Blue follows the real life "gang unit" of the Boston PD.

Finally look to 2012 for the David E. Kelley medical Monday Mornings. Based on the book written by Dr. Sanjay Gupta, this show follows what happens when surgeons have to answer for what went wrong.

If you're looking for drama, adventure, excitement, and fun, then TNT is the place to be this summer.

C. Orlando is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow her on Twitter.

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Leverage Quotes

Alec: I'm just very good at what I do.
Parker: This is the score! The score!
Alec: Age of the geek, baby.
Eliot: Somebody kiss this man so I don't have to.

Eliot: He tried to kill us.
Parker: More importantly he didn't pay us.
Eliot: How is that more important?
Parker: I take that personally.
Eliot: There's somethin' wrong with you.