This fall, there are so many great shows on TV that my DVR is working overtime just to keep up. There are a few shows that I miss from last season (Lie to Me, being one…) but plenty of others have entered the TV landscape and have made for great TV watching. Here are a few of my favorites, by day, time, and channel.
9:00 PM — House — Fox. This season has been pretty interesting as we see how House is getting his life back after his “run in” with Cuddy’s dining room window at the end of last season. I hate that Lisa Edelstein and Olivia Wilde have left the show, but it really feels like a new start for House, now that he has hit rock bottom. We’ll have to see if the new characters work out.
10:00 PM — Hawaii 5-0 — CBS. In its sophomore season, it is starting to pick up the pace a bit. I enjoy the character interaction and development, but the scenery is what really pulls in viewers. Plus, who doesn’t love that theme? (Now you’re going to be humming it all day!)
10:00 PM — Castle — ABC. This show is an absolute hit! Love that it can be incredibly funny, heartwarming, and mysterious at the same time. It is also great that the powers that be have marketed the whole package of the show by tying in books that “Castle” has written. (I’ve read two of them myself, and they really keep with the theme of the show.) Love the sexual tension between novelist Castle (Nathan Fillion) and Detective Becket (Stana Katic) (Thanks to his friendship with the Mayor, Castle gets to be a part of Becket’s detail on the police force – he is using her as his muse for his detective novels.) I hope this one will be around for a LONG time…
8:00 PM — The X Factor — Fox. OK, so I haven’t been watching this every week, but what I have seen, I’ve enjoyed. Having Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul back together is enough to make anyone watch, and the talent pool has been pretty good. I think this one will be around for a while
10:00 PM — Unforgettable — CBS. Poppy Montgomery steals the show as Carrie Wells, a detective that doesn’t forget anything that happens in her life. She remembers every detail of everything she sees, and can draw on those memries to help her solve crimes. The sexual tension between her and her partner Al is smokin’ hot, and the through story of her trying to remember the face of the man who killed her sister years ago (the only day in her life she cannot recall the details of) makes for compelling TV.
10:00 PM — Body of Proof — ABC. This is not just another CSI rip-off. The characters are very complex, and the through story of Megan Hunt (Played by Dana Delaney) who has a difficult relationship with both her daughter and her boss (Played by Jeri Ryan of Star Trek fame) is interesting. If you like Patricia Cornwell’s books of Kay Scarpetta, then you will love this tale of a neurosurgeon turned medical examiner.
RETURNING NOVEMBER 1, 2011: 10:00 PM — Covert Affairs — USA. One of the best spy shows since Alias went off the air. Annie Walker (Piper Perabo) is a young CIA agent who travels the world getting the bad guys. She is helped by a blind handler, Auggie (played by the very-nice-to-look-at Christopher Gorham). Other players in this suspenseful drama are Peter Gallagher, Anne Dudek (House), and Sendhil Ramamurthy (Heroes).
8:30 PM — Suburgatory — ABC. This hilarious new comedy is a “fish out of water” story. Tessa (played by newcomer Jane Levy) was a teen growing up in NYC, living with her dad (Jeremy Sisto) since her mom left, when her dad found a condom in her night stand. (It was wrapped, not used, but he was worried none the less). She told him she was holding for a friend, which made hime more concerned, so he moved them out to a suburban neighborhood, filled with white picket fences, pot luck dinners, barbeques, and pesky neighbors. Stand out performances go to Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm) and Anna Gasteyer (Saturday Night Live). Hope this one stays around. Also, I love that it does not use a laugh track. (Hear that, Whitney? When it is really funny, a show doesn’t need a crutch like a laugh track…)
9:00 PM — Modern Family — ABC. This is truly a comedy for our time. It features hilarious characters and funny, sometimes painfully funny, circumstances that we all can relate to. The story centers around a father, his Columbian wife, and her son, the father’s two children, a daughter who is married to a bumbling husband and has three outrageous kids, and a gay son and his partner with their adopted Chinese daughter. Every week, this show delivers some of the most ingenious writing on TV. This is show is so relatable to all demographics. A must watch!
9:00 PM — Criminal Minds — CBS. Last year was a rough one for this gritty crime drama — it dropped two of its female leads and their viewers left in droves. Luckily, CBS realized the enormity of this mistake and brought back both J.J. (A.J. Cook) and Emily Prentis (Paget Brewster). With the gang all back together, it is starting to remind me of shows from previous years. It is not for the faint of heart, but if you enjoy a good suspense with a solid group of core characters, this is the show for you.
10:00 PM — CSI: Crime Scene Investigation — CBS. Even though this show has been around a LONG time, it still keeps things fresh. I hate that Laurence Fishburn left after only two seasons, but I am finally warming up to Ted Danson’s new character, D.B. It still delivers solid storylines and keeps me on the edge of my seat the entire time. Again, this is not for the weak stomached, as some of the scenes can be really gruesome, but great acting and great story telling has kept this show on the air.
10:00 PM — Brad Meltzer’s Decoded — Hist. Back for its second season, Decoded takes you behind the scenes of some of the most talked about mysteries in the United States. The crew, Buddy, McKinley, and Scott, follow clues that Brad gives them as they are researching these mysteries surrounding some of the most important monuments or moments in our culture. Previous topics have included Fort Knox (Is there really gold in there?), Mt. Rushmore (Is it a secret sign for White Supremacy and the Ku Klux Klan) and the corner stone of the White House (Where is it? Did the Masons steal it after it was commissioned? Why can’t we find it?) This is a great family show that is both entertaining and educational. And, if your DVR is already booked with other 10:00 PM shows, don’t worry — since it is on the History Channel, there are plenty of other times to view this insightful show!
10:00 PM — Revenge — ABC. Oh. My. Lord. What a terrific show! This is by far my favorite show of the new season. It focus around the lives of Hampton socialites that have done a horrible crime — framing a girls father for a crime he did not commit. That little girl was Amanda, and she ended up being institutionalized for years, never again getting to see her father after he was taken into custody by the authorities. He died while she was locked up, but sent his protégé Nolan (Gabriel Mann) to pick her up upon her release. Her dad left her a box, which held a road map of sorts, of all the people who had wronged him. She changed her name to Emily (Emily VanCamp, formerly from Brothers and Sisters), and with the fortune he left her, has come to wreck havoc to all who wronged her father. For all of us who have wanted to get back at those who have hurt the one’s we’ve loved, this is the show to live vicariously through! Victoria (played by Madeline Stowe) is also giving a knock-out performance. A guilty pleasure…
So that’s all for this installment. Check back for what I have to recommend for the rest of your week’s viewing pleasure.
Have I missed any of your shows that are on Monday-Wednesday? If I have, please leave a comment below so I can see what I’m missing! Until next time…
Conni Ironmonger-Mann is a professor, wife, and mother, who enjoys nothing more than snuggling with her two favorite people in front of the TV at the end of a busy day’s work…