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Lucifer follows the X-Files to a strong debut amid a flood of comics-based TV shows

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It seems the new run of X-Files has been a hit. (It seems wrong to call it a relaunch or a reboot since it’s the same show with the same cast and credits, just after a 14 year absence.) Last night’s second episode paved the way for a strong debut for Lucifer, the new show based on the Vertigo comic. (Haven’t watched it yet but it’s on my hard drive.) X-Files is airing in Gotham’s spot for the next few weeks, and did better than that show:

Looking closer at the timeslot debut of “X-Files,” the 3.2 rating tops 32 of 33 original episodes of “Gotham” to air Mondays at 8 over the past season and a half on Fox, and there’s a chance “X-Files” could match “Gotham’s” series premiere (3.3) in the finals. It also did a 2.1/8 in adults 18-34 and a 4.0/10 in adults 25-54. Roughly 52% of its 18-49 and 25-54 audience was male, as it was Monday’s No. 1 program in both categories.

At 9 p.m., “Lucifer” opened with a hot 2.4/7 in 18-49 and 7.2 million viewers overall, placing first in its time period in 18-49 and standing as the night’s No. 2 show in the demo. It matches “Rosewood” as the highest-rated of eight Fox series launches this season (more than doubling “Minority Report” in the same hour last fall), and is the top-rated premiere on any network since the debut of CBS drama “Supergirl” last October. In a good sign, “Lucifer” held just about all of its audience from its first half-hour (2.5 in 18-49) to its second (2.4).

Lucifer stars Tom Ellis as Lucifer Morningstar, a fallen angel who comes to earth and teams up with a human policewoman to talk about the problems of thirtysomethings in the era of hipsters, social isolation and income inequality.

Just kidding, they fight crime, guys, they fight crime

Ellis was formerly on Eastenders, so he’s the perfect fit for a show based on a Vertigo comic. The show is based on the Lucifer comic which was based on a Neil Gaiman/Sam Kieth/Mike Dringenberg character from Sandman, but developed by Mike Carey and drawn by Peter Gross for several issues, although it took me about five minutes of googling to find the name of the artist on the book’s original run, so there’s that.

Fox has a Lucifer site set up with all kinds of collateral, including this:

Which is a pleasant reminder. Vertigo launched a new Lucifer series last month by Holly Black and Lee Garbett so all the synergy seems to be going strong here. 

All that said, whereas once the debut of a TV show based on a comic book would have been the subject of months of nerd level excitement, the most I ever heard about this show was the very strong promo during the NFC Championship game. People are totally blasé about comics based on TV shows now. In any given week there are at least six hours of comics TV on the air, mixing and matching. And more coming I’m sure I’ve missed many in the below.

Fox: Gotham
Lucifer
Two new shows based on X-men characters

CW: Arrow
The Flash
Legends of Tomorrow
iZombie

CBS: Supergirl

ABC: Agents of SHIELD
Agent Carter

Netflix: Daredevil
Jessica Jones”
Luke Cage
Iron Fist
Defenders
Punisher

AMC: The Walking Dead
Preacher

Sony: Powers

Cinemax: Outcast

SyFy: Wynonna Earp
Krypton

Here’s a longer list of some 42 shows in active development. And it doesn’t even mention several, like John Ridley’s mystery project for Marvel.

I tell ya what, there is only ONE comics-based TV show that I can’t wait to see, and that’s Damage Control.  Because it’s about time to get funny and meta. And also, Dwayne would have liked it.

Also, here’s my free suggestion: Mystery Men. The time is now, people.

 

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