Fall TV Preview: Our Night-by-Night Guide

  • Comments: ↓ 13 user comments
  • Publish Date: August 20, 2010

Fridays

Friday Primetime Schedule (All times ET/PT)
  8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30 10:00 10:30
ABC Secret Millionaire Body of Proof 20/20
CBS Medium CSI: New York Blue Bloods
CW Smallville Supernatural [Local programming]
Fox Human Target The Good Guys [Local programming]
NBC School Pride * Dateline NBC Outlaw

New shows are highlighted in bold above.
* School Pride will alternate in the 8pm timeslot with returning series Who Do You Think You Are?

New shows

Image

Key new show: Blue Bloods (CBS, 10p starting 9/24)
Though there have been behind-the-scenes squabbles over the show's direction -- which led to the departure of executive producer Ken Sanzel -- this blend of family drama and crime procedural is probably still the best new show on a weak night. Blue Bloods stars Tom Selleck as a police chief and the patriarch of a multi-generational family of New York cops that also includes Donnie Wahlberg, Bridget Moynahan, and Will Estes; Bobby Cannavale has also been added to the cast and will appear in later episodes.

May not last long: Outlaw (NBC, 10p starting 9/17*)
Jimmy Smits stars as a conservative Supreme Court justice who likes gambling and women a little too much and decides to quit the bench and open up his own private practice, where he travels the country to take on cases representing "the little guy." Combine a weak lead-in (i.e., NBC's Friday night lineup) with a lackluster critical reaction to the pilot, and you have the makings of a short-lived show, though the network gets credit for giving the show's first episode an extra airing.
* The premiere episode also airs Wed 9/15 at 10p.

Also: Like Quincy, Body of Proof (ABC, 9p; date TBA) centers on crime-solving medical examiner, but this time, the ME is a woman (Dana Delany), and she's got plenty of problems in her personal life; Jeri Ryan co-stars ... New feel-good reality show School Pride (NBC, 8p starting 9/24) is basically Extreme Makeover: School Edition.

Returning shows

Key returning show: Human Target (Fox, 8p starting 10/1)
The good news is that Fox opted not to cancel this ratings-challenged first-year action series; the bad news is that the show's new home is Friday nights, where Fox's cult favorites go to die. But at least the network is putting some resources behind the show. Matt Miller (Chuck) takes over showrunner duties for season two, and, in addition to sprucing up the show's music and look, he's added two female characters (played by Indira Varma and Janet Montgomery) to the existing team of Mark Valley, Chi McBride and Jackie Earle Haley.

Also: Smallville (CW, 8p starting 9/24) returns for its 10th and final season, which will feature Darkseid as the main baddie and the return of a number of guest stars from past seasons, including John Glover as the late Lionel Luthor, Laura Vandervoort as Supergirl, and James Marsters as Brainiac ... Season 6 of Supernatural (CW, 9p starting 9/24) begins a year after the events of last season's finale ... Summer cop series The Good Guys (Fox, 9p starting 9/24) will attempt to survive the tougher competition of the fall season when it returns with a new batch of episodes ... Medium (CBS, 8p starting 9/24) will kick off its seventh season with a Freaky Friday-style role-switching episode ... CSI: New York (CBS, 9p starting 9/24) will be without Melina Kanakaredes for the first time in its seven seasons; she'll be replaced by Sela Ward.

Cable highlights

Key show: The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret (IFC, 10p starting 10/1)
Arrested Development fans looking for David Cross and Will Arnett on the small screen this fall will have an embarrassment of riches; while Fox's Running Wilde stars Arnett and features Cross in a supporting role, Todd Margaret reverses the billing. Cross created and co-wrote this six-episode British comedy (airing in the U.S. on IFC) in which he stars as an awkward temp who accidentally finds himself sent to London as the man in charge of his company's new energy drink product. Amber Tamblyn, Janeane Garofalo, and Spike Jonze also make appearances, while The Smiths' Johnny Marr provides the score.

Also: HBO's weekly political talkfest Real Time with Bill Maher (10p starting 9/17) returns from hiatus with new episodes running through November, and will be back yet again in early 2011 ... The animated Star Wars: The Clone Wars (Cartoon Network, 9p starting 9/17) returns with a 22-episode, "transformative" third season that will reveal the destiny of the "Chosen One."

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Comments (13)

  • Mitch Tough  

    Outstanding preview!

  • Pearl  

    Thanks for the overview. A few shows seem promising. Time will tell.

  • Mitch  

    Great job, Jason! Extremely useful article. It's all about Lone Star for me. Nothing much else really excites.

  • TT Boy  

    Thin, thin fall season. What the hell ever happened to Swing Town, CBS?? That was GOOD! And I miss The Unit. And Jericho. Good wrap-up.

  • Nashid  

    Thanks, Man. Very thorough preview.

  • Christopher  

    Great job. I'm starting to really love the content of this site.

  • Jim  

    the original Hawaii 5 0 was a great show but without Jack Lord and James MacArthur it will be a lot different. I have hopes because of the strong acting team they assembled. I do hope they at least use the great music from the first 5-0.

    Men of a Certain Age sounds ...well who wants to listen to l old men gripe..that is too much like real life.

    Is anyone else getting over dosed on Two and a half pervs running the same shtick over and over?

    Chase...just what we need..NOT. In Plain Sight, the Close and the original NCIS are very good but the rest of them are at best .....time fillers.....we need more options besides yet another cop show

  • Tom  

    I will try The Event and Chase . I am not interested in a fat people show like Mike&Molly . And Hawaii 50 doesn't even compare to the Original, nothing new, standard cop show crap with mostly second rate actors. No Jack Lord, No Hawaii 50.

  • Damasc  

    Well done mate..All I really needed to know about the upcoming season. Cheers

  • Eileen  

    Where is Numbers this fall

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