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Crisis (NBC) Drama
Dermot Mulroney stars in a hostage thriller about the children of Washington D.C.’s elite and power-players. No relation to Dylan McDermott’s Hostages … this is so confusing.
Crossbones (NBC) Drama
A period leftover from the 2012 development season, starring John Malkovich as Blackbeard the Pirate and, still, absolutely no one else.
Friends With Better Lives (CBS) Comedy
James Van Der Beek (Don’t Trust the B), Kevin Connolly (Entourage) and Brooklyn Decker (uh …) in Rules of Engagement 2.0.
Gang Related (Fox) Drama
Yet another Los Angeles cop drama—but this one has the RZA, Terry O’Quinn from Lost and a guy from The Wire. Otherwise, L.A. cop drama.
Golan the Insatiable (Fox) Animated
A powerful warrior from an alternate universe ends up in suburban Earth and befriends a surly young girl in Invader Zim: The Sequel.
Growing Up Fisher (NBC) Comedy
Show-killers Jenna Elfman and J.K. Simmons in a Parenthood-ish family dramedy about a blind patriarch and his kooky blond wife.
Intelligence (CBS) Drama
An intelligence operative (Lost’s Josh Holloway) has a microchip imbedded in his brain, making him a human Wi-Fi super-computer. Or Jake 3.0.
Killer Women (ABC) Drama
Tricia Helfer (Battlestar Galactica) is Walker, Texas Ranger … just like her old BSG costar Katee Sackhoff on Longmire.
Lucas Bros. Moving Co. (Fox) Comedy
Twin comedians Kenny and Keith Lucas star as incompetent movers. Remember Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez in Men at Work? Like that.
Mind Games (ABC) Drama
Speaking of brothers, Christian Slater and Steve Zahn star as siblings running a psychological-profiling company. Never give up on TV, Christian.
Mixology (ABC) Comedy
Beautiful singles mingle in a high-end Manhattan bar, looking for love and decent tips. Potential to be the most insufferable series of 2014 … if it ever makes it to air.
Murder Police (Fox) Animated
From the company behind Bob’s Burgers and someone who worked on Family Guy, a cartoon cop satire that may or may not live up to Adult Swim’s Stroker & Hoop.
The Night Shift (NBC) Drama
Eoin Macken (Merlin), Freddy Rodriguez (Six Feet Under) and Jill Flint (The Good Wife) are good-lookin’ overnight doctors.
Rake (Fox) Drama
Keegan Deane (Greg Kinnear) is a brilliant, charming asshole of a lawyer who gets things done and pisses people off. It’s House Goes to Court.
Reckless (CBS) Drama
Speaking of lawyers, Anna Wood and Cam Gigandet star as opposing Southern attorneys in lust—and at war! It’s The Good Wife Does Charleston.
Resurrection (ABC) Drama
When people start returning from the dead, unaged and perfectly healthy, who’s going to solve the mystery? Or cue up The 4400 on Netflix?
Short-Com Comedy Hour (Fox) Comedy
Says here, “A modern take on the comedy variety series,” so expect it to die and be buried sometime over the summer.
Star-Crossed (The CW) Drama
In E.T. meets Kyle XY meets Romeo & Juliet, a pretty Earth girl falls in forbidden love with a prettier alien boy; pretty drama ensues.
Surviving Jack (Fox) Comedy
A ’90s-set coming-of-age tale, starring Connor Buckley as Awkward Teen and Christopher Meloni (Law & Order: SVU) as No-Bullshit Dad.
Undateable (NBC) Comedy
Chris D’Elia (Whitney) teaches his romantically challenged roommate and his loser friends how to date women—hopefully, none are Whitney Cummings.
Us & Them (Fox) Comedy
A would-be couple (Parenthood’s Jason Ritter and Gilmore Girls’ Alexis Bledel) barely tolerate their sitcom-cliché friends and families.
Wayward Pines (Fox) Drama
Carla Gugino, Matt Dillon and Terrance Howard star in a mystery-thriller about a seemingly idyllic suburban community. Is all as it appears? Of course not! There are trees in the name!
RETURNING & NEW CABLE SERIES
The “cool” TV shows that you’d actually admit to watching, but will more likely be whining about missing because you don’t have cable. It’s ironic, like rain on your wedding day.
Luther (BBC America; Tuesday, Sept. 3)
Season 3 Premiere: Idris Elba returns to being more badass than most ’Merican cops. Ironside, take note.
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (FXX; Wednesday, Sept. 4)
Season 9 Premiere: The Gang moves to a new network and night; find your channel at GetFXX.com.
The League (FXX; Wednesday, Sept. 4)
Season 5 Premiere: FX’s other gang also moves; the funniest sports show that’s not even about sports will be followed by a new (nightly!) season of Totally Biased With W. Kamau Bell, FYI.
Boardwalk Empire (HBO; Sunday, Sept. 8)
Season 4 Premiere: Having beaten psycho rival Gyp Rosetti, Nucky (Steve Buscemi) gets back to Atlantic City business, while Al Capone (Stephen Graham) expands his in Chicago.
Sons of Anarchy (FX; Tuesday, Sept 10)
Season 6 Premiere: Both Clay (Ron Perlman) and Tara (Maggie Siff) are in prison, leaving Jax (Charlie Hunnam) to run SAMCRO alone and polish his own white sneakers.
Derek (Netflix; Thursday, Sept. 12)
Series Debut: Ricky Gervais’ new seven-episode show about a retirement-home worker is a departure from his other comedies in that it’s not even remotely funny.
Haven (Syfy; Friday, Sept. 13)
Season 4 Premiere: The latest run of the Stephen-King-short-based supernatural series kicks off on Friday the 13th—ooh, scary!
South Park (Comedy Central; Wednesday, Sept. 25)
Season 17 Premiere: Have Trey Parker and Matt Stone run out of ideas after 16 years? Hell, I ran out of ideas after 16 blurbs (see above).
Eastbound & Down (HBO; Sunday, Sept. 29)
Season 4 Premiere: The real final season for Kenny Fucking Powers (Danny McBride) and the most underrated HBO comedy ever … sigh.
Hello Ladies (HBO; Sunday, Sept. 29)
Series Debut: Gawky Ricky Gervais cohort Stephen Merchant attempts to hang with the beautiful people of Hollywood—needless to say, it goes terribly/hilariously.
Homeland (Showtime; Sunday, Sept. 29)
Season 3 Premiere: Brody (Damian Lewis) is on the run; Carrie (Claire Danes) is shattered and cry-face-y; Saul (Mandy Patinkin) is, well, pretty much the same as ever.
Masters of Sex (Showtime; Sunday, Sept. 29)
Series Debut: Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan star as famed sexuality researchers William Masters and Virginia Johnson, so expect gratuitous nudity and sex—yay, premium cable!
American Horror Story: Coven (FX; Wednesday, Oct. 9)
Season 3 Premiere: This season is about modern-day (and 1830s) witches in New Orleans, with all of your favorite AHS repertory players (minus Connie Britton and Dylan McDermott) returning.
The Walking Dead (AMC; Sunday, Oct. 13)
Season 4 Premiere: Once again, the zombie soap’s 16-episode season will be split between eight episodes this year and eight next February. On the upside: More walker swarms than ever!
Doctor Who (BBC America; Saturday, Nov. 23)
50th Anniversary Special: This is such a big deal, it’s being broadcast simultaneously around the world to avoid Internet spoilers. Oh, you geeks are adorable.
Ripper Street (BBC America; Sunday, Dec. 1)
Season 2 Premiere: Since this period drama is back for a second season, it’s safe to say they haven’t yet caught Jack the Ripper. Don’t worry; no geek interest here.
Treme (HBO; Sunday, Dec. 1)
Season 4 Premiere: Only five more episodes and Treme is gone forever. After that, you’ll have another show besides The Wire to yammer on about endlessly to strangers at parties.