TSG’s Fall TV Preview

by TSG on Tue, September 15th, 2009 at 11:16 am

TSG watches too much TV. This is common knowledge at this point. But, you should be thankful I do because now you have a complete run-down on the upcoming and returning shows this Fall. My couch potato ways are good for something, sometimes. Today I’ll be covering the major network shows, tomorrow I’ll be doing all your awesome cable shows.

I trust you’ll let me know if I leave anything out. Here we go…

As far as this couch potato is concerned, CBS has pretty much owned Monday nights the past few years. From King of Queens‘ last few seasons to the ushering in of How I Met Your Mother and Two & A Half Men to the new success, The Big Bang Theory, CBS is killing it with what many are calling a dying medium – the live audience sitcom.

This season they introduce a new show that is being compared to the film Knocked Up. In Accidentally on Purpose, Jenna Elfman plays a film critic who ends up pregnant after a one-night stand with a younger, less together fellow than herself. Sound familiar? We’ll see what happens but Elfman seems to be the only star in this, so it might be a lull in CBS’ mammoth night of comedy that caps off with CSI: Miami.

On Tuesday nights I’m usually indulging in one of my few reality TV guilty pleasures, Read what that is on the other network sections. But CBS has NCIS, which I understand is a pretty popular show as well. Also, Mark Harmon is in it. Well he’s in the original, turns out there’s an NCIS: Los Angeles now and it’s right after it’s predecessor. The LA version stars Chris O’Donnell and LL Cool J.

At some point, they end the NCIS-a-thon and have a show called The Good Wife that stars former ER star, Julianna Margulies. She plays a former lawyer who must return to the court room to work after her politician husband is sent to jail for various offenses. Sounds like it could be ok?

Sitcom veteran Julia Louis-Dreyfus is in another season of her hit show, The New Adventures of Old Christine. Personally, I don’t know anyone that watches it but she keeps getting nominated for Emmys so it couldn’t be that bad, right? After that is Jay Mohr’s Gary Unmarried, which has received lots of critical acclaim, enough to keep it on the air another season.

Having two sitcoms in a row would naturally lead into a cop show, right? Not so much? Don’t tell CBS that because they’re following their 8PM to 9PM (7PM to 8PM CST) sitcoms with Criminal Minds. I’ll be honest and say I don’t know much about Criminal Minds other than that it has a great cast headed by Joe Mantegna and Mandy Patinkin AKA Inigo Montoya. Right after that, the New York version of CSI, CSI: New York which is in its 6th season and has Gary Sinise, AKA Lieutenant Dan.

Survivor is back for yet another season and this time they’re in Samoa. Alrighty.

The reality TV ends there and goes to the original CSI (the best in my opinion) and their 10th season! If you haven’t watched in a few seasons, Laurence Fishburne is in the cast now. That’s reason enough for me, after all he’s Morpheus and Furious Styles!

After CSI is what is my pick for the winner of its time slot this season, The Mentalist. Just in its second season, it and it’s star, Simon Baker, have receieved great reviews and great ratings. The Mentalist is another crime show, this one is about a detective with psychic abilities and it is actually way better than it sounds.

Not a lot of people watch TV on Friday nights which is a shame because Ghost Whisperer, Medium and Numbers are great shows and that is CBS’ Friday night line-up.

Even with those highly rated shows, they have competition on Friday nights, see more about that further down in this blog post.

They don’t do anything on Saturday nights! Just encore presentations of some of the shows from earlier in the week. Read about Sunday!

60 Minutes is on Sundays. Wake up! Now that you’re through that part of it, so is Amazing Race and a new show called Three Rivers. Three Rivers is about a team of transplant surgeons and each episode is told from the perspective of the doctors, the donors and the recipients. This looks like an awesome show.

Heroes is back! Now I understand it’s one of those shows you can’t just jump into, you have to go back to the first episode and catch up. But if you’re into Heroes, you’re jumping out of your skin with excitement at its return. Sci-Fi geeks and not so Sci-Fi geeks alike seem to love this show.

Following Heroes is Trauma, a brand new medical show (probably to attempt to replace ER) that follows EMTs on their shifts of life-saving duties. Might be worth a watch.

One of my guilty pleasures! The Biggest Loser is back! This is really an inspiring show and it makes you feel lazy in the process. It’s kind of an interesting paradox in that it shows people taking control of their lives and growing as people by working out and getting in shape, meanwhile while watching, you realize you’re sitting on the couch watching TV. But still, really fun show to watch and you really start pulling for certain people, I highly recommend this show.

Wednesdays have historically been kind of a lackluster TV night. NBC is trying to change that by debuting a new medical drama, Mercy, before the highly rated Law & Order: SVU which will try to recreate the same success it saw on Tuesday nights.

As a Law & Order: SVU fan, I don’t think it’ll have any problems.

My favorite day of the TV-watching week occurs on this day on NBC. You just cannot go wrong with The Office, 30 Rock and Parks & Recreation. Thursdays will also feature SNL: Weekend Update Thursday which sounds like an oxymoron but they’re moving their weekly news sketch (Weekend Update) to Thursdays – and still doing it during the regular show on Saturdays – different updates though, I’m confused too.

Maybe the show I’m looking forward to most this season is also on NBC Thursdays; Community starring Joel McHale, Chevy Chase and Ken Jeong looks to be an amazing show that will surely fill the void that My Name is Earl left and The Office will leave. There are also some up-and-comers on that show, one of whom is the insanely funny Donald Glover. You can see Glover in a group called Derrick Comedy on YouTube, CollegeHumor, in their new movie Mystery Team and if you live in the NYC area, at Upright Citizens Brigade.

Yeah, I’m looking forward to this show.

Law & Order will kick off NBC Friday nights in its 2523rd season it seems like. That’ll be followed by Southland which is one of the better Cop Dramas I’ve ever seen. It’s also cool because living in Los Angeles, I can watch scenes and know where they’re filming. Aside from that, Benjamin McKenzie of The OC, C. Thomas Howell (The Outsiders, Secret Admirer, Soul Man), Regina King (everything) and Michael Kuplitz (Band of Brothers) round out a great cast to watch.

I really hope the second season continues with the pace and success that the first season had.

Some changes around Saturday Night Live this season. The first of which being, Don Pardot retired! If you don’t know him, he was the voice of SNL since it began. Sad to see him go and hearing another voice guide us through our Saturday night won’t be the same.

Cast-wise, Casey Wilson and Michaela Watkins (who I loved) will not be returning to the case but everyone else will plus a new-comer out of the LA Groundlings named Nasim Pedrad. If you’re wondering if she’ll be any good, current SNL cast members Kristen Wiig and Will Forte were members of The Groundlings.

I’m looking forward to a good season but will miss that booming voice.



Dancing with the Stars returns with Chuck Liddell, Kelly Osborne, and Melissa Joan Hart…just to name a few.

After that, Castle returns for a second season. This is a drama about a writer and detective who must team up to track down a serial killer who commits murders based on books the writer has written. Seems interesting.

This….sounds….awesome. Shark Tank is a show where people have to pitch TV Show ideas to network executives and more often than not, the execs will respond brutally and aggressively. Why does this have to be on at the same time as Biggest Loser?!

After that, more Dancing with the Stars and then The Forgotten. Christian Slater fronts this cast of amateur detectives determined on finding Slater’s daughter.

ABC has a bunch of new shows on Wednesday nights, 5 to be exact…

Hank is about a Wall Street executive who loses his job and must return to family life in suburbs. Kelsey Grammar (Cheers, Frasier, The Simpsons) stars as the title character and he is joined by the likes of David Koechner (The Office, Anchorman, The Comebacks).

The Middle looks promising. Neil Flynn (Scrubs) and Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond) are parents of a quirky family in a quirky town, the show is best described as “quirky”.

Modern Family graces us with the return of Al Bundy, otherwise known as Ed O’Neill – YES! This new comedy is about a multi-generation family dealing with – each other. This also doesn’t look too shabby!

Then there’s Cougar Town starring Courteney Cox. The name says a lot about the show but it’s also the town high school’s mascot, making the title a play on words. Think Desperate Housewives with more kids – I think. We’ll see how this one goes.

Then Rebecca Romjin stars in a show called Eastwick about 3 suburban witches. I remember this show when it was called Charmed.

John Cho! John Cho! John Cho (American Pie, Harold & Kumar, Star Trek) stars with Joseph Fiennes in a show about saving the world, Flash Forward. Does a Thursday night series get much more epic? This show seems pretty crazy, but in a good way. Earth’s population simultaneously blacks out for 2 minutes and 17 seconds and see into their own futures. Weird!

Grey’s Anatomy will follow the new series with their 6th season everyone all still stirred from George’s death. The show seems to still be going strong, we’ll see if they can maintain this season.

Grey’s Anatomy will be followed by it’s own spin-off, Private Practice starring Kate Walsh. This season starts with the second season finale…what?

Supernanny returns with everyone’s second favorite British nanny (can’t beat Ms. Poppins) followed by Ugly Betty.

College football!


Houses get made over for more families fallen on hard luck on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition followed by yet another season of craziness on Desperate Housewives. ABC Sunday nights will culminate in the critically acclaimed Brothers & Sisters starring Sally Field.

I’ve watched none of these shows.

House and Lie to Me! Two great shows back-to-back. Hugh Laurie continues to dazzle on House as the curmudgeon physician and Tim Roth begins the second season of the hit series that follows an expert criminal investigator.

Look out CBS!

So You Think You Can Dance continues into the Fall, who knows what’ll be up after that.

Oh wait, I know. MLB Playoffs and a little show called AMERICAN IDOL!

SYTYCD will enjoy a second night and precede the new series, Glee that many people seem to enjoy so far which will be put on hiatus once AMERICAN IDOL returns in January.

Bones & Fringe are another two shows that have their devoted followings. They also both feature former WB stars (Joshua Jackson on Fringe (Dawson’s Creek) and David Boreanaz on Bones (Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel). How about that?

Fox is making a run at Friday nights with a new series that seems kind of watchable – Brothers features Michael Strahan (formerly of Swagbucks partner, the New York Giants) in what I’m guessing is his acting debut, Carl Weathers (Apollo Creed in the Rocky films) and a cast of talented comedic actors, one of whom you should look out for. Colton Dunn performs at Upright Citizen’s Brigade here in Los Angeles and is very funny, this show could do some things!

This is followed by ‘Til Death which I wasn’t aware was still on even last season and Dollhouse which was recently renewed for a second season. I’ve never seen the show but I assume it has something to do with Eliza Dushku.

Sci-Fi geeks will contend that it’s success has to do with Joss Whedon’s involvement, but come on…Dushku.

Cops and America’s Most Wanted – 30th year in a row. And then Mad TV.


The Simpsons
start its 21st season(!) while the Family Guy spin-off starts its 1st season; The Cleveland Show. Seth McFarlane has really taken over Fox Sunday nights with The Cleveland Show, Family Guy and American Dad all running on the same night.

Here’s where I might sputter out as I don’t watch any of these shows, but we’ll give it the ol’ college try!

One Tree Hill is still on, how ’bout that? Good for them.

Gossip Girl has lots of people excited with its return, Facebook and Twitter won’t shut up about it, so I can at the very least assume it’s addicting.

The recycling center, otherwise known as CW runs Fox’ 1994 line-up with 90210 and Melrose Place. Fellas, if you’re looking for an acceptable excuse to get into these shows, I understand the ladies on the show are easy on the eyes.

Are these shows good? Does anyone know?

America’s Next Top Model is still on too. No kidding. Girls love this show, I’m sure it’ll do fine.

This is followed by a drama created by Ashton Kutcher about models – The Beautiful Life. This series stars Sara Paxton and Mischa Barton, do you need more information than that?

Onto Thursday…

Twilight fans! CW’s got another show about vampires! Vampire Diaries shows the side of vampire life that Buffy just blatantly ignored. The romance! From previews, it seems this show could easily just be called Twilight: The Series, but I could be wrong.

In the interest of keeping themes (Monday night is drama night, Tuesday night is old Fox drama night, Wednesday night is model night, go ahead, scroll up…) Thursday is supernatural night on the CW. What better to follow Vampire Diaries on supernatural night than…Supernatural?

Apparently this show is in it’s 4th season. Well done!

Smallville is still on too! Crazy!

In their 9th season no less, I remember this show starting strong but I didn’t hear about it for a while and it’s still on. Wow – I’m getting old.

Local play and encore presentations.

That was a lot of info…

Anything on the networks we should watch that I left out. Or, do you have anything to add about the shows I featured?

Leave a comment below and let Swag Nation know what you’re excited/not excited about.

Also, if you like TV, be sure to vote on our Emmy Polls and you might earn yourself and Swag Nation a huge Swag Code!

That was exhausting – I’m gonna go watch TV.


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