'Paternity Court' Moves Toward Due Date

Creator David Armour says the MGM conflict-resolution strip with Lauren Lake plans to “bring something … interesting but with a truly positive resolution.” It’s been cleared so far in 75% of the U.S. for a fall 2013 launch.
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MGM’s new Paternity Court from creator and executive producer David Armour, a one-time executive producer on Ricki Lake’s and Queen Latifah’s first talk shows, is starting to take shape as a conflict-resolution show presided over by a judge — TV personality and relationship expert Lauren Lake.

“We’ve seen these shows about ‘Who’s your baby’s daddy?,’ ” says Lake. “But there’s a nugget missing in current programming that I will bring to the show. My challenge is to bring something just as interesting but with a truly positive resolution.”

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Armour says the show will have takeaway message. “We’re not talking about someone who broke another person’s sunglasses,” he says. “These are life-altering decisions. There is a beginning, middle and end to each story. But then there’s, ‘What happens after the paternity test results?’ We don’t take any of this lightly. There is a responsible side to the show where we help families get on the right path.”

Most episodes will focus on one case, rather than on two like on court shows such as CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy.

Armour says he has not figured out yet where the show will tape. And he and his team are in the early stages of getting the show’s look and feel together.

“The set will come together over the next several months,” he says. “It’s a court show with a twist. But it’s set in a courtroom. It is a court of law and will be respected as such.”

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Most episodes will end with Lake revealing the results of a paternity test. But Armour says that won’t happen in every episode. And, he says, the show will cover a wide range of cases.

Paternity Court is cleared so far in 75% of U.S. TV homes for fall 2013, including on six CBS TV Stations: independents WLNY New York and KTXA Dallas, CW affiliates WPSG Philadelphia, WTOG Tampa, Fla., WUPA Atlanta and MNT affiliate WBFS Miami. Other groups picking it up for some stations: Belo, Comm Corp., Cox Capitol, Fisher, Gray, Granite, Hearst, Journal, Lockwood, LIN, Local TV, Meredith, Mission, Nexstar, Raycom, Sinclair, Weigel and Winston.

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Ratings

Overnights, adults 18-49 for September 29, 2016
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    1.6/6
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    1.2/4
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    0.9/3
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    0.6/2
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    0.3/1
Source: Nielsen

Reviews

  • Rob Owen

    Easily fall’s best broadcast network comedy pilot, NBC’s The Good Place offers a clever high-concept premise that’s complemented with intelligent, sometimes absurdist humor. Created by Michael Schur, co-creator of NBC’s Parks and Recreation, The Good Place is a highly serialized series that’s essentially set in heaven and stars Kristen Bell and Ted Danson. NBC made five episodes of The Good Place available for review, and the show not only holds up, but also it improves, deepening characters that initially feel one-note and frequently leaving viewers guessing with cliffhanger endings to many of the episodes. The combination of snappy dialogue and winning but flawed characters makes The Good Place a great bet for fans of smart TV comedy.

  • Maureen Ryan

    Pitch has swagger, for good reason. It gets the big things right; the Fox drama about the first female baseball player in the Major Leagues is one of the year’s most assured and exciting debuts. But part of what impresses about the pilot is also the way it confidently strings together so many small but telling details. Ginny (Kylie Bunbury) is the first woman to be called up from the minors to the big leagues, and no show since Friday Night Lights has done a better job of portraying the internal and external pressures that weigh heavily on young athletes asked to do much more than merely succeed on the field. Pitch will likely do a good job of getting viewers to root for it. The hope is that the show won’t be an impressive, short-lived curiosity, but rather a long-term phenomenon.

  • Kevin Fallon

    In a fall TV season that’s already making a splash for championing diverse, distinctive voices in an array of projects that they created, wrote, and starred in, Better Things on FX stands out. The show is created by, written by, and starsPamela Adlon. She plays Sam Fox, the single mother of three daughters modeled after her own reality-show-ready experience raising three girls in Los Angeles following a divorce. Sam is also, like Adlon, a working actress — on shows both raunchy, a la Californication, and animated for children, like her role on Recess. It’s a refreshingly blunt take on single motherhood without sacrificing the warmth of parental love, portraying the dance between selfishness and selflessness that’s at the heart of being a parent — especially one weathering the hormonal fireworks of a household of four women at different ages.

  • David Wiegand

    The fall TV season doesn’t count as much as it used to — we already know that. But no matter how many retreads the broadcast networks throw at viewers in the next few months, this fall will be memorable because of the premiere of Atlanta on Tuesday, Sept. 6, on FX. The half-hour comedy created by and starring Donald Glover (Community), simply and brilliantly recalibrates our expectations of what a TV comedy is and how black lives are portrayed on the medium.

  • Louisa Ada Seltzer

    The second reboot of the 1980s John Candy movie Uncle Buck, bumped by ABC from midseason, has the same tired jokes you'll find on any second-rate sitcom. Too bad, because Mike Epps is appealing and ABC would be wise to keep him around for future shows, but there’s just not enough to this show to suggest it will last past summer. It also airs against NBC’s America’s Got Talent, summer’s No. 1 program on broadcast, which may make it even harder to find an audience.

  • Neil Genzlinger

    Bryan Cranston brings his Tony Award-winning interpretation of President Lyndon B. Johnson to television in an adaptation of the Robert Schenkkan play All the Way, and it’s still quite a sight to behold, just as it was on Broadway in 2014. Nothing beats witnessing this kind of larger-than-life portrayal onstage, of course. But the television version, presented by HBO, offers plenty of rewards, allowing Cranston to work the close-ups and liberating him from the confines of a theater set. Cranston’s performance is a gem — in his hands, this accidental president comes across as an amazing bundle of contradictions, someone who seems at once too vulgar for the job and just right for it.

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