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Upfront updates: NBC has a good feeling about these J.J. Abrams and Jason Katims kids

After deciding yesterday that it was quite finished with anyone tied to that stuffy old Office that it’s finally shuttering next week, NBC’s pilot pickups are heading in a fresher, more untested, tied-to-hits-with-only-one-or-three-seasons-under-their-belts-ier direction. Deadline reports that Believe and About A Boy, the latest from J.J. Abrams and Jason Katims, respectively, are among the first new series (that don’t star Michael J. Fox/the DeLorean that can return to the Must-See TV glory days) ordered by The Peacock for its 2013-14 season. They join Crisis, from Life creator Rand Ravich, as well as efforts from Better Off Ted’s Victor Fresco (an untitled comedy starring that young buck Sean Hayes) and Bent writer-producer DJ Nash (Family Guide). Given the pedigrees of those last two, expect them to be wry, keenly observed, character-based candidates for your new favorite show that won’t exceed their initial episode order and will inevitably be shuttled to midseason. But hey: Maybe Jason Katims will do for About A Boy what he did for a pair of other mostly forgotten, didn’t-see-it-in-the-theater-but-wouldn’t-skip-it-on-cable movies!   

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