Another fall brings with it another blitz of new TV shows. And since we know you only have so much time and so much space on your DVR, we’ve taken the liberty of watching them all for you and highlighting the ones you should be watching. Some of the series’ stars are familiar faces, while others showcase newcomers. To help you sort them out, we present the MOST POPULAR STUDENTS
in the fall TV class of 2012.
From left: Andrew Rannells of The New Normal on NBC, Mamie Gummer on The CW’s Emily Owens, M.D. and Stephen Amell of Arrow, also on The CW
From left: Robert Trachtenberg/NBC, Kharen Hill/The CW (2)
| The New Normal |
(NBC, Tuesdays, 9:30 p.m.)
Stars: Andrew Rannells, Justin Bartha, Georgia King, Ellen Barkin
Résumé: Rannells was the hilarious Elder Price in the irreverent Broadway hit The Book of Mormon.
Premise: Seeking to be free of her small-minded grandmother’s help and influence, a single mom becomes a surrogate for a gay couple wanting a child.
Verdict: Familiar yet breezy with likable characters. Rannells is as charismatic on the small screen as he is on the stage.
|Emily Owens, M.D. |
Stars: Mamie Gummer, Justin Hartley, Aja Naomi King, Michael Rady
Résumé: Gummer commands her own show after appearing on Off the Map, The Good Wife and The Big C.
Premise: A new doctor finds out that hospitals are like high school as she faces both a tough boss and her old high-school nemesis.
Verdict: It’s familiar territory, but Gummer gives the show its heart and soul.
(CW, Wednesdays, 8 p.m.)
Stars: Stephen Amell, Colin Donnell, Katie Cassidy, David Ramsey
Résumé: You’ve seen Amell make guest appearances on Hung and Private Practice.
Premise: A playboy billionaire survives five years stranded on a remote island, then returns to Starling City and wages a superhero vigilante war on corruption with the agility and strength he gained in exile.
Verdict: Many DC Comics fanboys and Smallville fans will passionately debate this incarnation of Green Arrow, but the exciting pilot shows promise.
Janet Montgomery is Made in Jersey on CBS, Mindy Kaling stars in The Mindy Project on Fox and Justin Kirk appears on NBC’s Animal Practice.
From left: David Lee/CBS, Autumn De Wilde/FOX, Chris Haston/NBC
| Made in Jersey |
(CBS, Fridays, 9 p.m.)
Stars: Janet Montgomery, Erin Cummings, Kyle MacLachlan, Felix Solis
Résumé: Before taking on the law world, Montgomery appeared on Entourage and
Premise: A Jersey girl with insight into everyday people shoots for the stars at a big New York law firm while coping with snooty attitudes about her roots.
Verdict: This fish-out-of-water tale clicks because of Montgomery’s presence and charm. The Garden State needs a PR boost after Jersey Shore.
|The Mindy Project |
(Fox, Tuesdays, 9:30 p.m.)
Stars: Mindy Kaling, Chris Messina, Ed Weeks, Anna Camp
Résumé: Kaling is known for her role as Kelly Kapoor on The Office.
Premise: A talented young doctor grapples with maturity and boy problems.
Verdict: If it finds the right balance between sweetness and smart-aleckism, it could grow.
|Animal Practice |
(NBC, Wednesdays, 8 p.m.)
Stars: Justin Kirk, Bobby Lee, Tyler Labine
Résumé: Kirk charmed us for many seasons on Weeds and Jack & Jill.
Premise: This comedy follows a snarky vet who loves his animal clients more than people, often with good reason. When his more diplomatic and sensitive ex-girlfriend takes over the hospital, a clash of wills commences.
Verdict: Silly and unrealistic but still fun. The best character is his monkey colleague, Dr. Rizzo, whose high jinks liven up the place.
Andre Braugher returns to the small screen in Last Resort on ABC. The Alphabet Network will also air Nashville, starring Connie Britton, and 666 Park Avenue with Terry O’Quinn.
From Left: Craig Sjodin/ABC (2), Andrew Eccles/ABC
| Last Resort |
(ABC, Thursdays, 8 p.m.)
Stars: Andre Braugher, Scott Speedman, Robert Patrick, Daisy Betts
Résumé: The intense Braugher has co-starred on Homicide: Life on the Street, Men of a Certain Age and Hack.
Premise: A U.S. nuclear sub questions suspicious orders to fire on Pakistan. The military tries to take them out in retaliation, so they commandeer an exotic tropical island to stage a long-term standoff.
Verdict: This is the best pilot of the season. It’s tense, over-the-top and gripping.
(ABC, Wednesdays, 10 p.m.)
Stars: Connie Britton, Hayden Panettiere, Eric Close, Powers Boothe
Résumé: You know Britton from American Horror Story and from years on Friday Night Lights and Spin City.
Premise: A country legend faces competition from a younger star, whom she may be forced to open for on tour while her husband is groomed for a mayoral candidacy under her father’s thumb.
Verdict: You don’t have to be a country-music fan to be sucked into this smart musical melodrama.
|666 Park Avenue |
(ABC, Sundays, 10 p.m.)
Stars: Terry O’Quinn, Vanessa Williams, Dave Annable, Rachael Taylor
Résumé: O’Quinn played John Locke on the iconic Lost and has been seen on Millennium, Alias and Hawaii Five-0.
Premise: A young couple manage an NYC apartment complex with supernatural goings-on.
Verdict: Walks a line between engrossing eeriness and creepy clichés. Let’s hope that dragon floor mosaic heralds something deliciously dark.