JJ Abrams and Undercovers: The Best Hope of the New Sci-Fi Class?

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There are plenty of new sci-fi series coming soon to prime-time TV – including the new series The Cape that doesn’t quite impress Grame – and most of them have now gone public with trailers, trying to convince all of us (as well as all advertisers)l that they will be the next big thing.

The most disappointing trailer thus far – if only because of its limited length or scope – is Syfy’s Haven. That said, it’s based on the Stephen King novella The Colorado Kid, so it can’t be all bad, right? Watch the brief promo here.

But in terms of trailers that really jumped out at me and made an impression, the most impressive is the new JJ Abrams show Undercovers. It’s not just because Abrams is attached, or because I love the whole secret agent thing, but because something about the sequence just strikes the right tone to me. I’ve always felt that other secret agent shows – including Chuck, sorry Peter – have either taken things too seriously, or gone for the goofy a little too readily. They felt like low-budget attempts to pay homage to a genre, rather than a confident standalone achievement.

Undercovers may well have the same flaws, and there’s definitely a lot of Mr. & Mrs. Smith here that could be beautifully coy and charismatic, or forced and flat. But for the most part, I think it looks fun: Rapid-fire missions that can play out with some punch, some romantic tension that, if delivered correctly, could add a whole other dimension to the excitement, and some actors who seem to know what they’re doing.

Then again, I’ve been fooled before.

What do you think: Too cute for its own good? Too derivative? Not enough action? Or might this be just the right balance of romance, adrenaline and mystery – pretty much the elements that set all JJ Abrams projects apart?

More at Techland: Warehouse 13/Eureka Crossover, and Other Syfy Possibilities