Almost Human, created by TV veteran J.J. Abrams and starring Karl Urban and Michael Ealy, takes place in the not-so-distant future where cops fight crime alongside an android partner in the increasingly technology-driven world. The first part of its two-night premiere aired on Sunday, giving a look inside Abram’s new futuristic world.

The first part of the premiere on Sunday yielded 9.1 million viewers and a 3.1 rating among adults 19-49, due in part to its NFL lead-in. Almost Human’s debut showing introduced Detective John Kennex (Urban) and his android partner Dorian (Ealy). As the backstory goes, Kennex returns to the force after waking from a two-year coma. Already tech-wary, he’s uncomfortable with the prospect of having a machine for a partner.

J.J. Abrams On ‘Almost Human’ Vs. ‘Fringe’

While some are saying that Almost Human follows too close to the formula of Fringe, Abrams insists his new show is a different animal. “The Venn diagram of these two [shows] might be that they’re pushing the edge of technology and what might be possible in that regard,” Abrams said. “[Almost Human is] much more of a cop show that you might feel is familiar with a huge wrench thrown into that.

“It feels very distinct and different from the world of Fringe, which, at its core was a much more serialized show about this dysfunctional father-son [relationship] and romance that went over not just years, but different worlds,” he added. “This is a show that doesn’t quite get into that level of serialized storytelling.”

‘Almost Human’: Buddy Cop Drama, Technology Commentary

Almost Human will follow more of a case-of-the week format, letting its protagonists tackle an endless stream of crimes and criminals. It’s also going to explore the pros and cons of technology, showcasing the advantages it creates, while highlighting how it can alter things like human relationships for the worse. And, with Abrams’ light touches of camp, Almost Human seems bound to also be something of an unusual buddy cop drama as well.

“There’s definitely a mythology, but it’s a cop show,” said executive producer J.H. Wyman. “If they’re not solving cases every week, what are they doing?”

Part 2 of the Almost Human premiere will air Monday on Fox at 8/7c.

– Chelsea Regan

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