Ken Tucker
May 21, 2009 AT 09:32 PM EDT

The CW announced its new fall shows today. Here are mini-reviews of their three new shows. Warning: they’re based solely on short clips provided by the network, so I (and you) reserve the right to adjust opinions of them, up or down, once full-length episodes are available. But that will be… in the fall. Who wants to wait to have an opinion until then?

The Vampire Diaries I know, I know: another bit of vampire entertainment, based on bestselling books. But this one’s from Kevin Williamson (Scream and Dawson’s Creek), and it looks pretty sharp, with vampire brothers Paul Wesley and Ian Somerhalder baring their fangs over Nina Dobrev’s Elena. Plus, pairing it with Supernatural on Thursdays could be good programming.


Melrose Place I know, I know: another nighttime-soap remake/remodel. This one looks pretty vapid — I mean, when Melrose vet Thomas Calabro, never the most expressive Melrose actor, out-performs his younger co-stars in this brief clip (and who can forget his new co-star Ashlee Simpson-Wentz’s sterling work in 7th Heaven?), you suspect the road for this one might be rocky.


The Beautiful Life From executive producer Ashton Kutcher comes… not the potential stinker we might have expected. Or maybe it’s just because, in this new drama about “the world of high fashion,” I enjoyed seeing The O.C.’s Mischa Barton sink her vampirish fangs into the role of a substance-abusing model on her way down, down, down…


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