Thomas Edison is remembered as one of history's most successful inventors and/or obtainer of patents, but as the scholars that are modern film and TV writers will tell you, all a man's achievements are insignificant if he did not also balance them with secretly fighting crime. And so NBC, Longmire writer Daniel C. Connolly, and Hell On Wheels producer John Shiban are developing the procedural Edison, based on his years in the 1880s working as a consultant to and providing "retro-cool" steampunk devices for New York's police force, as recorded in the history books' margin doodles by TV writers who get bored easily.
Fittingly, much like Edison usually happened to "invent" things with the "help" of other, less celebrated and manipulative people, this "big, fun, genre-driven" Edison show is cobbled together from various other, remarkably similar projects—a bit of Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes here, a dash of those recent Harry Houdini: Super Spy and Young Leonardo Da Vinci stories there. Not to mention a whole lot of last year's ABC cop series revolving around Edgar Allan Poe, which is essentially the Nikola Tesla to this show.
Then again, maybe that means Edison will be remembered as history's greatest show about a historical figure who also secretly fought crime. And in that case, perhaps someday the show will be the subject of another TV show about a show about a historical figure who also fought crime, in which the show itself will be revealed to have secretly fought crime. Everything fights crime!