Sunday, September 14, 2008

CBS Fall TV Preview

So, it was a rocky start when I started this post.

But, I'm here to finish up the Fall TV preview posts on the major networks. The last one to go is CBS.

I've already completed NBC,

and Fox.


Monday: CBS Monday is filled with lots of sitcoms. It's kind of like their version of NBC's Must See TV "back in the day." But, I've always sort of thought it was kind of like the Red State's version of Must See TV. I suppose I can blame Everybody Loves Raymond for that, but mostly I can blame my own prejudices for that. I'll give you a bit of lowdown on the shows and you can decide for yourself.

The Big Bang Theory [9/22 @ 8 pm] is in its second season. How can a show featuring two nerdy roommates who pine after the hot girl across the hall appeal to Red Staters? The answer is, most likely, not at all. So, my GOP Must See TV is already looking stupid. Want to guess how valid it will continue to be? Following that show is one of my personal favorites--and most likely the only show on CBS that I watch now that I've slid away from CSI--How I Met Your Mother [9/22 @ 8:30 pm]. I fell in love with this show last summer and caught up with seasons 1 and 2 on Netflix. While I thought Season 3 didn't measure up with the first two years, it was still quite good--especially the over-the-top craziness of Barney Stinson (played by Neal Patrick Harris before he completely won me over with this summer's Dr. Horrible's Sing Along-Blog.) Please watch HIMYM!

After that, CBS provides Two and a Half Men [9/22 @ pm]. While this show may have inherited from Everybody Loves Raymond the mantle of signature sitcom on the network, I don't like the show and have no interest in spending a lot of time discussing it. I do wonder how Charlie Sheen likes performing that very weird grimace smile that is featured on the website graphic. That must hurt don't you think. But in general, my opinion of the show can be summed up in four and a half words: "It's a piece of sh--"

If you don't like Men, you could wait around for a new show called Worst Week [9/22 @ 9:30 pm]. The description of the show--main character magazine editor who is a bumbler around his girlfriend's family will do whatever it takes to please them--sounds like someone at CBS started jotting notes while watching his Netflix copy of Meet the Parents. But, I'm sure it'll be great!

And then there is CSI: Miami [9/22 @ 10 pm]. I'm just surprised that David Caruso hasn't poked himself in the eye from taking the sunglasses off and on while telling jokes.


On this night, CBS keeps it simple. There are only three, hour-long dramas to keep up with. But I will keep it even simpler than that. I'm only going to focus on one of those shows. NCIS [previously debuted, 8 pm] keeps the focus on Mark Harmon's procedural drama that is two parts JAG and one part CSI. Without a Trace [9/23 @ 10 pm] is now in its fourth, fifth, ??th season. If you simply can't stand to watch yet another minute of missing persons drama on the nightly cable news networks, this missing persons fictional drama might make it all more palatable. But I want to talk about the NEW Tuesday night show, entitled The Mentalist [9/23 @ 9 pm]. This show is probably not nearly as awesome as the name might promise it to be, but it sounds like a pretty awesome name, doesn't it? Can you imagine what this show might have been if it was written by Michael Chabon and presented itself like The Prestige? Unfortunately, a show that incredible would never get made for a primetime slot on CBS Tuesday night. Instead, the show comes off as a modern day knock off of Sherlock Holmes. But all procedural cop shows on TV--and CBS has LOTS of them--feature one or two detectives that have amazing observational skills. I fear the name is the best thing this show has going for it.


Are you tired of the procedural cop dramas on CBS? Well, neither are they! If you weren't paying attention, it's only the middle of the week and we've already seen CSI: Miami, NCIS, The Mentalist (ooooohh!), and Without a Trace. You might think that is overkill. You might think CBS is in a bit of a rut. Well, you know who else is in a rut? Old people . . . which provides a flimsy segue to The New Adventures of Old Christine [9/24 @ 9:30 pm]. Julia Louis-Dreyfuss has shaken off the Seinfeld Curse and found a successful (Emmy winning!) show on the Tiffany Network. Good for her. Is the show good? Maybe a little . . . but it can't be worse that anything Jason Alexander or Michael Richards tried.

Gary Unmarried [9/24 @ 8:30 pm] wins points for having a catchy title that rolls off the tongue. However, it is describes as follows: "Gary (Jay Mohr) is a recently single contractor with a controlling ex-wife." Uh oh! Single, moderately good looking guy with shrewish ex. That sounds . . . conventional. I hope they have a smart-alecky kid!

Having successfully filled an hour of a prime time schedule without a cop drama, CBS rewards itself with a two hour block featuring Criminal Minds [9/24 @ 9 pm] and CSI: New York.
[9/24 @ 10 pm]


Speaking of things people don't seem to get tired of . . . Survivor [9/25 @ 8 pm] is in Gabon this cycle. I lost real interest in the show after season two in Australia with Colby and what's her name who won the $1,000,000. You see . . . that's the problem. Nobody remembers who won except for season 1's Richard (and a lot of that is because he walked around naked a lot). Cultural moment . . . OVER!

This season of CSI:TOS [10/9 @ 9 pm] is notable for it being Gil Grissom's (original lead star/now producer and general BMOS(et) William Peterson) final season. And then there is new show Eleventh Hour [10/9 @ 10 pm], where star character "Jacob Hood will stop at nothing to make sure that scientific advances will be used for good and not for evil." THANK YOU Mr. Hood! Finally! Someone who can tell all those destructively objective scientists to stop and THINK about consequences for a change!


Ghost Whisperer [already debuted; 8 pm] is still hanging out on Friday night's here and Jennifer Love Hewitt still has a weird overly haired, skeletal look about her. What isn't the same on this night is The Ex List [10/3 @ 9 pm].  The CBS website that I gave you a link to lists a description of the show as: "What if you learned you had already met your soul mate? When a bachelorette-party psychic reveals to Bella Bloom that she has already met the true love of her life, she goes on a quest to find this mystery man from her past. With a limited time to locate him, Bella puts her normal skepticism aside and, with the help of her friends, lists all the males she has dated, befriended or even briefly encountered in her lifetime. It’s an illuminating and sometimes humiliating search, but Bella knows it might be her only chance to find “the one.”" This sounds like a slightly interesting premise that is a combination of HIMYM and My Name is Earl. But those are good shows, so maybe this might be a quality program. Unfortunately, since it is on Friday night at 9 pm, the chance of anyone watching it is pretty slim. Finally, Numb3rs [10/3 @ 10 pm] rounds out the night.

Weekend: CBS Saturday night is news magazines (48 Hours Mysteries) and Crimetime Saturday--which is a fancy way of saying they are going to rerun all those procedural cop dramas that you might have watched Monday through Friday. And then on Sunday (after football) you've got 60 Minutes, The Amazing Race [9/28 @ 8 pm], Cold Case, and The Unit.

So, there you have it. 

All major networks have been covered. I'll find a better way to do it next year, I promise.

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