M: Welcome to day two of our yearly Fall TV preview. As in past years, we’re going through each night of the week and list what the major networks are putting forth for you, the TV viewer. We’ll try to hit up on the major shows on the not-so-major networks, too. If we miss something, please comment and let us know, and we can make sure to include it in the future, and to heap praise or snark on it in our responding comments! Oh, and in case you haven’t seen our past previews, here’s a quick key:
- Titles in blue are new this season.
- Each * means one Quibbling Sibling will be tuning in.
- For Saturday and Sunday’s preview click here.
Dancing With The Stars (ABC, September 19th)
M: If you’ve read my opinion on this show in this space before, you know I prefer to refer to it as Dancing with the Mildly Recognizable. Well, they aren’t necessarily succeeding, but they appear to be trying harder at least. They have a legit star in David Arquette even if he was a star 15 years ago. Plus, they have drawn a ton of buzz with the casting of Chaz Bono. The rest of the cast? Again, most fall under mildly recognizable, not stars.
E: I can’t tell you how excited I am to see Queer Eye For the Straight Guy‘s Carson Kressley dance with stern taskmistress/fiery redhead Anna Trebunskaya, though.
M: I, on the other hand, can tell you how excited I am. None. None excited.
How I Met Your Mother (CBS, September 19th)*
C: Now that Chuck has moved to Fridays, my house will finally be watching HIMYM live instead of online! Last season’s finale brought Marshall & Lilly’s looong-awaited pregnancy to fruition, so this one will probably end with a baby. They like to take things slow on this show, but the ride is fun.
M: I just hope they go back to being funny, and leave the whole death of parents/emotional break up type stuff to the rom coms and dramas. This is one of the funniest shows on TV, be funny!
The Sing-Off (NBC, September 19th) *
M: I will readily admit, I love The Sing Off.
E: Me too! But I’m really sad they’re doing it in the fall – I loved looking forward to it at Christmas, when there’s absolutely nothing on television.
M: Yeah, but last year they jammed the whole thing into something like 15 days. So I missed the first week, and then it was over. Hopefully they’ll give it a little more time to develop and percolate this season.
Gossip Girl (The CW, September 26th)
M: I will readily admit, I have no interest in Gossip Girl.
E: Oh, I am so shocked. But, me too. People who do care might be interested in knowing that Elizabeth Hurley’s beginning a guest stint as, I think, a straight-dealing villain.
Terra Nova (FOX, September 26th) **
M: In the distant future, mankind is forced to create time travel and move into the distant past, where we apparently fight with each other and with dinosaurs. From what I can tell, no one involved in the creation of this show ever read Ray Bradbury’s A Sound of Thunder, or they’d know that even the tiniest alteration in the distant past, like stepping on a butterfly, will have inexplicable consequences in the future. That said, I like time travel things, like Jason O’Mara, and still I’m not sold. I will probably check it out to see if it’s any good though.
E: Ah, the Butterfly Effect! See, I prefer time travel stories where the time travelers have already changed the past. But I digress.
M: No, you’re not digressing. I’m right there with you on that! It’s the difference in credibility between Terminator and Terminator 2, where in the first one the future is brought about specifically by the events that the man and machine that came back created, while in the second the future that the two machines came from is destroyed by their actions. How could they have come back if they never exist? At the point that they leave to come back in time they have ALREADY done everything they are going back to do. Um, okay, you’re right, you did digress. Back to our regularly scheduled programming…
E: I’m cautiously interested in this show. Spielberg and sci fi are enough to get me in the door. I’ll end up watching Dancing With Some People You Might Have Vaguely Heard Of if it doesn’t pan out, though.
C: Instead of LOST With Dinosaurs? Really?
Two Broke Girls (CBS, September 19th – premiering at 9:30)
M: Getting good reviews, looks like it has a chance.
E: I love Kat Dennings (Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist) but it’s a very sitcommy looking sitcom.
M: And heaven forbid you let yourself be entertained!
C: No, in this case, I think it looks dumb.
Two and a Half Men (CBS, September 19th)
M: Maybe it’s the train wreck aspect, but I am actually curious to see how this shakes out, with the killing off of Charlie Sheen’s character and the addition of Ashton Kutcher. Curious enough to watch it every week? No, probably not. Curious enough to watch past the season premiere? That will depend on said premiere.
E: Oh, I’m curious to hear about the shaking and the outing, too, but I’ll read about it, not watch.
C: I don’t even care. I’m as uninterested in Sheen and Kutcher as it is possible to be.
**** UPDATE – M: Curiosity did NOT get the best of me, I didn’t watch it.
Hart of Dixie (The CW, September 26th)
C: This seems to be a genre hybrid, medical drama mixed with the old moving-to-Hicksville-from-the-Big-City trope. Rachel Bilson plays the lead, a high-achieving doctor who moves to a small southern community, where I’m sure the people are quirkily charming and the scenery is in soft-focus.
M: Why didn’t they name it Southern Exposure? That would have been clever.
E: Best reason for this show not to get canceled: so Scott Porter can never come near The Good Wife again. Reason I have no interest in seeing this show: Scott Porter, utterly ruined for me by The Good Wife. And, let’s be fair, it does astound me that the same person is responsible for Chuck and Gossip Girl. I just have no idea whether I’m going to be interested in a Josh Schwartz show or not.
C: They are indeed mindbogglingly dissimilar.
House (FOX, October 3rd)
E: Um, thanks for handing Lisa Edelstein over to The Good Wife, House. I think.
Mike and Molly (CBS, September 26th)
M: Mrs M enjoys this show. I’ll say that I’ve laughed more at it than at Modern Family, but that’s a pretty low bar, as I’ve laughed more at commercials for Contagion than I’ve laughed at Modern Family.
E: It looks dreadful, but I guess I’m for the diversity?
M: Oh, it’s not dreadful, it is watchable. And it is nice to see a show centered around people who are more real-looking than most shows.
E: I’m with you there.
C: Nevertheless, I like a little more plot or a little more geekery in a show if it’s going to keep my interest.
Enlightened (HBO, October 10th)
E: Laura Dern develops a conscience in this comedy costarring her mother, Blythe Danner.
M: Um, sis, I think you’re thinking of Gwenyth Paltrow. Laura Dern’s mother is Diane Ladd, and her father is Bruce Dern.
E: Don’t I feel sheepish.
Castle (ABC, September 19th)***
C: Of all returning shows, this is the one I’m really looking forward to. May’s finale left us in the absolute lurch, with the Captain dead, the conspirators responsible still at large, and Beckett shot in the chest. While the Quibbling Siblings won’t try to convince you we believe she might actually die, things look awfully grim. I expect romantic anguish in epic doses.
M: No, I totally think she’s dead. Absolutely.
E: And the rest of the show will be about Castle being haunted by Beckett’s ghost, who wisecracks AND makes him a better man.
M: Oh, no, she’s just off the show. The rest of the show is about him being a miserable drunk who wallows in freakish misery, blaming himself for not saving her. Or, maybe, the standard TV rule of any season-ending cliffhanger that holds the life of one of the characters the show is built around in the balance will end with some completely uninspired way for the character to survive unscathed.
E: Then again, she might remember that he professed his love. So that could be SOMETHING.
Hawaii Five-O (CBS, September 19th)
C: Terry O’Quinn’s apparently appearing for a multiple-episode arc, so if any LOSTophiles aren’t already tuning in for Daniel Dae Kim, you may want to start.
M: If you weren’t watching, first of all you should have been, because it was really fun and because Scott Caan was a revelation in this role. Second, the season finale left you in about as much of a lurch as the Castle finale did, with the governor dead, McGarrett in jail for it, Danno’s family leaving for Jersey, and the Iron-Chef-chairman-turned-mob-boss getting away scott-free. It was quite the finale, and Terry O’Quinn can only make things even better.
The Playboy Club (NBC, September 19th)
M: I have no interest in this, but I have to say that I find it funny when organizations of any kind boycott something that they haven’t even seen.