Fall Preview 2016: Do ABC, Hayley Atwell have a winner in ‘Conviction’?

Conviction -While ABC made the decision to cancel “Agent Carter” earlier this year, at least they still managed to keep its star Hayley Atwell on board for a completely different role with “Conviction.” She is going to be playing here someone who has some serious issues, but could in turn be one of the only people capable of figuring out whether or not the right person was convicted of a particular crime.

We’ve got our full preliminary take on this show below, which we’re certainly interested in for a number of different reasons.

Premiere Date and Timeslot Competition – Monday, October 3 at 10:00 p.m. Eastern time. This is the spot that was occupied for so many years by “Castle,” and now “Conviction” faces “Scorpion” in a new timeslot and then also “Timeless,” another new series, on NBC. There is room for all three shows in terms of subject matter. What’s a little more interesting to us competition-wise is that there are some commonalities between this show and “Bull” with Michael Weatherly. Will that help or hurt them in terms of looking at convictions, juries, investigations, and the like?

Logline – “Hayes Morrison, the brilliant but ne’er-do-well daughter of a former president, is blackmailed into taking a job as the head of Los Angeles’ newly created Conviction Integrity Unit. She and her team of lawyers, investigators and forensic experts work to examine cases where there’s credible suspicion that the wrong person might have been convicted of a crime.”

Cast – Emily Kinney as Tess Larson, Shawn Ashmore as Sam Spener, Merrin Dungey as Maxine Bohen, Hayley Atwell as Hayes Morrison, Eddie Cahill as Connor Wallace and Manny Montana as Frankie Cruz.

Trailer – It’s certainly solid, and it’s fun to see Atwell utilize an American accent on the show after playing Peggy. The issue that the pilot could face is that it feels very by-the-numbers: Rebel tries to balk at responsibilities only to discover that there is value in what she is doing, and in turn decides to stick with it. We mentioned “Bull” earlier, but we suppose with Hayes’ addiction history you could also call this “Elementary” 2.0.

Overall Take – First things first, we love the cast. Kinney and Ashmore are great, Dungey was engaging on “Once Upon a Time” as Ursula, and of course we’re an Atwell fan. This show still needs to go bigger and bolder than this trailer to impress us, but we do think there’s a reasonably good shot that it can pull it off over time provided viewers give it a chance.

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