Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Fall 2010 TV Season

What's back, what's new and what I'm liking

The Fall TV season this year has some good-looking shows that I'm enjoying, excited about, or glad to see return. Here's the breakdown of shows I'm watching and/or TiVo'ing:

Frank Darabont's Walking Dead (AMC) - one of my most hotly-anticipated new shows of the season, Walking Dead, based on the comic book of that name, follows survivors of the zombie apocalypse as they make their way through the wasteland left behind in mankind's wake. Premieres Halloween night.

Chuck (NBC) - I really love this show, and wish it got better ratings. Year after year it's a crap-shoot whether or not it's going to be renewed. Chuck is a quirky, funny spy show that never takes itself too seriously. Instead, it dazzles you with 80s nerd-pop references, tons and tons of guest stars (most recently Rocky IV's Dolph Lundgren and Lou Ferrigno, the 70s-era Incredible Hulk, among many others), cool spy action and clever, funny dialogue. This season features The Terminator's Linda Hamilton playing Chuck's mystery mom.

The Event (NBC) - I'm currently TiVo'ing this, so all I can really say about it is that I've continued to hear positive feedback. I just haven't had a chance to watch it.

The Chase (NBC) - I'm also TiVo'ing this, but I don't think I've heard anything about it one way or the other.

No Ordinary Family (ABC) - Michael Chiklis (The Shield, The Commish) stars as the father of a family that develops super powers. It's pretty clearly based on the Incredibles, but with real people. The pilot was this Tuesday and seemed to be pretty well-received. I've got it on TiVo.

Stargate: Universe (SyFy) - the second season premiered this week, picking up the story of the band of soldiers and scientists marooned aboard the Ancient starship Destiny as it careens through deep space. The first season was a bit uneven, but decent enough to keep watching. Good sci-fi is rare enough that I'm willing to forgive a lot.

Ugly Americans (Comedy Central) - in this animated adult comedy, regular dude Mark lives his life in New York City, which is full of fantastical creatures. His roommate is a zombie, his girlfriend a succubus, and his partner down at the social services office is a feeble wizard. This show is hilarious and I can't wait for it to begin again next week. It'll follow new episodes of South Park if you're into that.

Undercovers (NBC) - sort of a take on Mr & Mrs Smith, this show follows the exploits of a couple who were once agents for the CIA and have been pulled back into the spy life. I enjoyed the premiere quite a bit and hope the show stays solid.

Nikita (CW) - a sort-of sequel to La Femme Nikita (or the movie Point of No Return), Nikita is about a secret government agency called The Division. It recruits young men and women who are believed to have been executed for their crimes, and trains them to be spies and assassins. Their motives aren't always pure or patriotic, however, and their greatest agent - Nikita (played by Maggie Q) has sworn to take them down. It's in its third week and I've been pretty happy with it so far.

Smallville (CW) - the adventures of Superman when he was a boy. This is the tenth and final season of Smallville, which I only began to watch last year. It's occasionally a little goofy, but it's pretty much been the only superhero show on TV (excepting the very uneven Heroes and, now, No Ordinary Family). This season is hinting that Clark Kent may finally, by the show's finale, don the iconic red and blue suit and become Superman at last. Either way, the ride to that point should be pretty cool.

And that's pretty much my 2010 playlist. There are some midseason replacements that look promising if they go ahead, such as The Cape, about a cop who turns vigilante hero. And no, I didn't skip Saturday, there's just nothing on.

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