Why make Moonlight?
No, seriously...after Angel and Forever Night, why make a show about a good-hearted vampire turned private eye who patrols Los Angeles solving crimes and protecting humanoids from bad vampires? The comparisons are inevitable...it's a no-win premise. There's really isn't any cool and different spin you could do in the arena, so all it's going to seem is boring, unimaginative, and redundant to the genre fans who might tune in to this type of program.
And if the shows creators think a new spin is incorporating an 'interview with the vampire' faux documentary technique along with voiceover (what's up with this? some other new dramas this fall have also done this bit where our hero talks to an unseen interviewer in order to relate exposition and help us 'get to know the character' I guess...lazy lazy lazy tee-vee making), and then proceed to strip away most of the rules and mythology we've come to know and associate with vampires...WTF? Why even make him a vampire then?
As for the other new 'genre' TV series this fall - Journeyman, Bionic Woman, Reaper, and Chuck - I'm leaning toward sticking with 'Chuck' for a bit.
I don't why I found it entertaining and engaging exactly, but I did (this despite actor Zachary Levi's startlingly annoying resemblance to Jimmy Fallon)...Bionic was too Dark Angel, Journeyman too Daybreak, Reaper too much like Chuck (right down to almost identical closing scenes where the nerdy everyman with powers hero not only starts to grow up but actually says it outloud) and I can only make time for one nerdy everyman with powers hero...so sue me.
Guess that leaves Sarah Connor Chronicles to pick up the slack...(though notice how the cast publicity stills from all these shows ALL seem to look the same...where's the imagination?)
That all said, these are opins based solely on the pilots...which is kinda unfortunate actually. When you go back on DVD and rewatch the pilot of your favourite series, a lot of times they're pretty lame. This is because they're primarily about meeting the characters, laying out the premise, establishing the arena..you know, setting the table. We usually don't fall in love with a series until we've had a chance to spend some time with the characters and become invested in them and their dilemmas.
But we live in the days of 'opening weekend box office numbers' trumps all - see the movie biz lately - and so how a show does right out of the gate seems to be all that really matters. I generally tend to go back and retry a show around ep 6 and see if its found its stride...but in these days of the 'quick hit', even that can be too late (but not for Moonlight).