The network of Under the Dome will spend next summer looking under another dome — the one on Capitol Hill. CBS has given The Good Wife creators Robert and Michelle King a 13-episode order for the D.C.-set comic thriller Brain Dead, a project the duo describe as “a mix of genre-pulp and high-brow politics – The Strain crossed with The West Wing,” according to a joint statement from the Kings. Brain Dead will follow a young female congressional staffer working her first D.C. job. In addition to realizing what we all already know — that the government is pretty much broken — she’ll stumble upon the cause of the dysfunction: “Alien spawn have come to earth and eaten the brains of a growing number of Congressmen and Hill staffers,” according to a show description provided by CBS. “It seemed like the best way to address the news today — not straight, but as the opening act of a horror movie,” the Kings said in their statement. In addition to the Kings, D.C. fixer Judy Smith (the inspiration for Scandal) has signed on as a co-exec producer, while Good Wife vets Ridley Scott, David Zucker, and Liz Glotzer are onboard as exec producers.
There’s no casting on Brain Dead yet, but the early green-light for the project — which is slotted to air next summer and has been in development since last September, when the Kings signed a new long-term deal with the Eye — means the producers will have plenty of time to find some A-list talent if they want. Given the guest stars they’ve attracted to Good Wife, luring strong actors (plus plenty of real-life D.C. folks looking to make cameos) shouldn’t be an issue. (There’s also a cadre of former Good Wife actors who could conceivably be reunited with the Kings.) The timing for Brain Dead is also pretty genius: A show about D.C. dysfunction will be airing right in the heat of the 2016 presidential and congressional elections, allowing for plenty of crossover potential between the real political scene and the fictional, zombie-fied version. Insert your own Donald Trump joke here.