With some of the fall shows (finally!) premiering this week, and most returning within the next two weeks, I thought it was time to analyze what I’ll be watching on each night. I won’t necessarily be doing recaps, or in-depth analysis on each show, but it’s just a window into what I think will be good. Some shows have earned a longer leash than others: for instance, while I can be frustrated at time with How I Met Your Mother, I’ve already invested in eight seasons – there’s no way I’ll be missing an episode of its curtain-call season. One other thing to note: Last season, I stuck with shows such as Go On and The New Normal – shows I enjoyed, that had strong initial ratings. And shows that have since been cancelled. I don’t pretend to know what will be successful – I’m still a champion of Happy Endings and Community, shows that have faced cancellation multiple times (with Happy Endings sadly losing that battle). But I know what I consider “good,” and the shows I’ll be watching will hopefully live up to my expectations. So, with that said, below is a night-by-night breakdown of how I’ll be filling up my DVR.
Watch Live: How I Met Your Mother (CBS, 8 PM), Moms (CBS, 9:30 PM), Hostages (CBS, 10 PM)
DVR: Hart of Dixie (8 PM, CW), Sleepy Hollow (9 PM, FOX)
Why: As I stated above, I am very curious to see if Carter Bays, Craig Thomas et. al can stick the landing on How I Met Your Mother. I unabashedly love Anna Farris, and Chuck Lorre has proven he can run a quality sitcom (see: Big Bang Theory). Hostages looks like the best new drama of the season – starring Dylan McDermott and Toni Collette, with the premise that Collette’s character is a doctor whose family is taken hostage by McDermott so that…you know what? Watch the preview. It’s that good.
As for Hart of Dixie, that’s a guilty pleasure, and I always need at least one cheesy soap in my life. Besides, I love Rachel Bilson. And Sleepy Hollow sounds crazy – a modern-day Ichobod Crane still tracking down the headless horseman, from two former writers of LOST. Sounds like a DVR show to me.
Watch Live: Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD (ABC, 8 PM), New Girl (FOX, 9 PM), The Mindy Project (FOX, 9:30 PM)
DVR: Brooklyn 9-9 (FOX, 8 PM)
Why: Well, I love Clark Gregg. I loved The Avengers. I think Joss Whedon knows how to make great television. And, mostly, the show just looks like fun. So Agents of SHIELD is a must. And having never missed an episode of New Girl or Mindy Project, I don’t imagine that will change soon. Mindy Project might be the future of the sitcom, and despite New Girl having some unanswered questions, it’s still one of the funniest shows on TV. As for Brooklyn 9-9, anything from Michael Schur at this point gets at least a sampling – from Saturday Night Live to The Office (early seasons) to Parks and Recreation, he’s earned goodwill for any new TV venture.
Watch Live: Revolution (NBC, 8 PM)
Why: Well, I may have been one of the few who actually enjoyed the first season of Revolution, despite its many missteps. I couldn’t stand Charlie after, say, episode two, but Miles and Aaron and Captain Neville and Bass…well, they kept me entertained, on a week-to-week level. Bonus points for being one of the only shows who actually doles out key chunks of mythology instead of just using red herrings all season (see: FlashForward).
Watch Live: Parks and Recreation (NBC, 8 PM), The Michael J. Fox Show (NBC, 9 PM)
DVR: Once Upon a Time in Wonderland (ABC, 8 PM), Big Bang Theory* (CBS, 8PM), Grey’s Anatomy (ABC, 9 PM)
Why: Parks and Rec is the funniest show on TV; I love Michael J. Fox. Back to the Future trilogy? Amazing. His work on TV on The Good Wife, Spin City, and, most especially, Family Ties? Fantastic. Michael J. Fox gets watched in my house.
I love Once Upon a Time (the original version) on Sundays, and so those producers have earned some trust with putting on this type of show. Besides, the former Sayid Jarah as Jafar? Yes please.
Grey’s Anatomy…sigh. It’s a show I regularly hate-watch but just can’t quit. At the end of it all, I still want to see what happens to Meredith, Derek, Alex, the (former) Chief, and Bailey. You’ll note I didn’t see Yang. Don’t care.
As for the asterisk by Big Bang Theory? I’ll be watching it online, until such time as my DVR can actually record three things at once.
Masterchef Junior. Just kidding – most likely not watching TV.
DVR: Saturday Night Live (NBC, 11:35 PM).
Why: No matter that this season will have substantial cast turnover, or how people complain that SNL isn’t as funny as it was, there is usually at least one sketch per episode that cracks me up. Besides, my man Beck Bennett is joining the cast!
Watch Live: Once Upon a Time (ABC, 8 PM)
DVR: The Simpsons, Bob’s Burger, Family Guy (FOX, 8 – 9:30 PM)
Why: I really like Once Upon a Time, and its second season improved upon its first. While they have probably added too many characters (Neal/Baefire, Hook, Greg and Tamara, Peter Pan, etc.), it’s still a show that pays off season-long questions (Will the curse be broken? Does magic exist outside of Storybrooke?).
As for the Fox “Animation Domination,” those are the perfect shows to DVR because football always ends up delaying their start time, so I DVR the entire Fox Sunday night and then catch up later in the evening.
When Suburgatory (ABC, ?) and Community (NBC, ?) come back, they’ll return to the regular live/DVR rotation they were in last season. Fox also has a show called Enlisted that was originally going to premiere in the fall, but was recently delayed. The show looks hilarious, and it’ll get a DVR-pass once it airs. And of course I’ll never miss an episode of The Soup, but I wanted to keep this to broadcast-only shows.
Any shows you think I missed? Shows that I just shouldn’t be watching? Be sure to leave a comment.