What I’m Watching: ’16-17

I’m jumping on board a little later in the game this year, but fellow television addicts, we’ve arrived! With the first day of autumn also comes booties, leather jackets, “harvest” scented candles (whatever that’s supposed to smell like), PSL overload, college football, and network premiere week 2016! We’re already fairly deep into this season’s pilots and returning series’ premieres, but like I’ve discussed before, in today’s state of television, there are no hard starts and stops of a traditional TV season. Traditional doesn’t really even exist any more. Things that used to be unicorns (good summer shows, binge releases, online-only content, etc.) are now common place in the landscape of surplus programming as we’ve come to know it. Sunday’s Emmys even delivered! Who knew!

fall tv lineup

Traditionally for this post, I’ve written a small blurb about each new show I’m excited about, and then catalog each returning show I regularly watch. But because I like keeping my readers on their toes (and I watch entirely too much television), we’re going to try something new this year. By network, I’ve assembled a list of everything I am currently watching/trying to keep up with/excited to begin watching this year. For distinction, I’m bolding the few new shows I think are worth giving a shot. As long as times permits, I plan to give a mini-review a few episodes in of each new program I watch, so stay tuned for that. But for now, behold my 2016-17 television to-do list:

ABC

  • Designated Survivor: New series, premiered Wednesday, September 21
  • Modern Family: Season 8 premiered Wednesday, September 21

AMAZON PRIME

  • Transparent: Season 3 premieres Friday, September 23

AMC

  • Better Call Saul: Season 3 premiere TBD Spring 2017

COMEDY CENTRAL

  • Broad City: Season 4 premiere TBD Spring 2017
  • Drunk History: Season 4 premieres Tuesday, September 27
  • Inside Amy Schumer: Season 5 premiere TBD Spring 2017

THE CW

  • Jane the Virgin: Season 3 premieres Monday, October 17

DISNEY

  • Girl Meets World: Season 3 currently airing

FOX

  • The Last Man on Earth: Season 3 premieres Sunday, September 25
  • Making History: New series, premiere TBD 2017
  • New Girl: Season 6 premiered Tuesday, September 20

FREEFORM

  • The Fosters: Season 4B premiere TBD

FX

  • The Americans: Season 5 premiere TBD Spring 2017
  • Atlanta: New series, premiered Tuesday, September 6
  • Better Things: New series, premiered Thursday, September 8

HULU

  • Casual: Season 3 premiere TBD Spring 2017
  • Difficult People: Season 2 just wrapped
  • The Mindy Project: Season 5 premieres on Tuesday, October 4

HBO

  • Girls: Season 6 (final season) premiere TBD Spring 2017
  • Divorce: New series, premieres Wednesday, October 9
  • High Maintenance: New to HBO, premiered Friday, September 16
  • Last Week Tonight: Season 3 currently airing
  • The Leftovers: Season 3 (final season) premiere TBD Spring 2017
  • Veep: Season 6 premiere TBD Spring 2017

NBC

  • This is Us: New series, premiered Tuesday, September 20

NETFLIX

  • Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life: four new telefilms premieres Friday, November 25
  • Grace and Frankie: Season 3 premiere TBD Spring 2017
  • Jessica Jones: Season 2 premieres Friday, September 30
  • Master of None: Season 2 premiere TBD April 2017
  • Narcos: Season 2 premiered Friday, September 2
  • Orange is the New Black: Season 5 premiere TBD Summer 2017
  • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Season 3 premiere TBD Spring 2017

SHOWTIME

  • Masters of Sex: Season 4 premiered Sunday, September 11

TBS

  • Full Frontal: Season 1B premiered Monday, September 12

 

To summarize:

A) I watch and/or attempt to keep up with a lot of television, I know.

B) There’s a lot more I am interested in watching (i.e. Viceland shows, more late night and news programs, etc.), and there are likely some shows I’m committed to watching that in good faith I should weed out (i.e. Modern Family, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Girl Meets World, etc.) — but a huge part of what I love about television is the seriality of it. It’s a commitment, and I try my best to honor that, especially when beginning a new program.

C) Almost half of what I’m looking forward to watching doesn’t even premiere until Spring 2017 – which just further enforces the lack of timeliness in television release timelines. I don’t know about you, but I think I’ll have enough on my plate up until then.

On second thought, rumor has it these Chicago winters are BAD. What do you think – did I leave anything out? What do you have on your TV must watch list this year?

 

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What I’m Watching: Fall 2016 edition

Well, well, well. Here we are again, new primetime season. It feels like just yesterday we were talking about A to Z (RIP), Marry Me (RIP), and the final seasons of Parks and Rec (RIP) and Parenthood (super RIP). Yes, NBC did slay my soul last season. Although original content distribution platforms and timetables are ever-evolving, it’s still safe to say television amps up the in the fall. Every September+ brings a fresh batch of new shows to get pumped about and returning favorites to mark your calendars for.

A few important notes before I get to the meat and potatoes:

a) As you may know, I gravitate toward comedies. I’ve been weaning myself into more dramas lately with goodies like Breaking Bad (re-watching), American Crime (still working on but loving so far!), The Wire (watched because I liked American Crime and Amy Poehler told me to), and The Americans (also really great). People don’t actually consider Orange is the New Black a drama right? I digress…

b) This year’s new shows are really laser-focusing on that 90’s-obsessed Gen Y and Millennial audience. (Note: that’s me and yes, I am listening.) I see you throwing these actors from decades past in my face. Looking at you Rob Lowe, John Stamos, Fred Savage, all ya’ll Muppets, NPH, Jamie Lee Curtis, I COULD GO ON. But here’s the deal: it’s one thing to entice an audience – and an entirely different thing to keep them around. Like everyone else raised with Beanie Babies and water beds, I tuned into Girl Meets World (#respect), and it was apparent Disney brand-slapped Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel hard. I realize rolling beloved actors into brand new characters is an entirely different feat, but don’t stake your campaign/show entirely around talent. Here’s to hoping the writers and producers of these new series also do their homework so that some of these new players (especially on networks) build some audiences who stick around.

c) This season is TOUGH. With hardly any returning favorites and new series I’m only slightly intrigued by, I’m a little less than enthused with what’s on the table. This summer set a lot of high standards for programming (OITNB, Difficult People, Wet Hot American Summer, The Fosters, Mr. Robot, probably a lot more I’m forgetting), so maybe that’s what makes falling into the fall a littler scarier this time around.

Now with all of that out in the open, here’s what I am most looking forward to tuning into over the next few months. [All times listed in ET, the only timezone that matters ;)]

fall tv lineup

Brand spankin’ new content:

  • Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris (NBC): The network god (NBC) and its vastly talented holy spirt triple threat (NPH) is are attempting to bring back the variety show format to primetime television. For as much street cred and punch as NPH can pack, I’m not quite sure if an audience will stick the landing. Regardless, I’m there for the ride. Premiered September 15th and will continue airing on Tuesdays at 10pm
  • Life in Pieces (CBS): I don’t know that the world needs a new Modern Family (mostly because the original is still holding up just fine), but I’m curious to see CBS’s supposedly “edgier” twist on “authentic” family humor told through chopped up vignettes. Premieres on Monday, September 21 at 8:30pm
  • Blindspot (NBC): While the premise (a memory-less tattoo-mapped girl winds up in a bag in Times Square) is a little hokey, NBC has been doing their darndest to push this show and I could stand to get in on an action-based thriller. Premieres Monday, September 21 at 10pm
  • The Muppets (ABC): I mean, I think we’re all curious. And as a single adult woman, I would love to live in a world where “did you see what happened on last night’s Muppets?!” is an acceptable and interesting first-date topic. Please grant my wishes, ABC! Premieres Tuesday, September 22 at 8pm
  • Scream Queens (Fox): Scream Queens to Fox feels like Blindspot to NYC. Couldn’t be more different re: premise (SQ= Lots of lady-power helmed by JLC that’s purposely silly-scary, put on by the makers of Glee and American Horror Story), but there’s just so. much. promotion. Did you guys know I work in marketing? So yeah, I’ll check it out. Premieres Tuesday, September 22 at 8pm
  • Grandfathered (Fox): My conscience knows this isn’t going to be an older Jesse Katsopolis (just wait for Fuller House, Mandy!), but even after all the greek yogurt commercials, I will still follow John Stamos around like a lost puppy. Premieres Tuesday, September 29th at 8pm
  • The Grinder (Fox): I welcome back Rob Lowe and Fred Savage to my television set with open arms in this weird, impractical, lawyer-centric story line. Premieres Tuesday, September 29th at 8:30pm
  • Wicked City (ABC): True Detective for network? But it’s with Chuck Bass and set on the 1982 Sunset Strip with a focus on serial murders. Enough buzzwords for me to at least give it a shot. Premieres Tuesday, October 27th at 10pm
  • Master of None (Netflix): Aziz Ansari’s new series about a New York actor (loosely based on himself who, as he puts it, “[is] in his early 30s, he has good friends, and realizes, ‘Oh shit, I’m an adult now.’” Aziz is a hilarious genius, and if this show remotely resembles his previous work (Parks and Recreation, his book Modern Love, his standup in general), I’ll likely be a huge fan. Premieres Friday, November 6

Oldies but goodies (aka returning, and some revised, favorites):

  • The Mindy Project (Hulu): Premiered September 15th
  • Modern Family (ABC): Season seven premiers Wednesday, September 23 at 9pm
  • Jane the Virgin (The CW): Season two premieres Monday, October 12
  • Transparent (Amazon): Season two premieres Friday, December 4
  • New Girl (Fox): Season five premiere date TBD

What else am I missing? Because I truly am always looking for more reasons to skip the gym.

What I’m Watching: Fall TV Lineup

For obvious reasons, last years Fall TV Preview post was one of my favorite things to research. I love autumn for so may reasons (see: the PSL, fall fashion, football, sweater-weather, and so on…), BUT a new television season just may be is without a doubt my favorite. So without further ado, here’s what’s lighting my fire this ’14-15 season! [All times are listed in EST.]

fall tv lineup

Returning favorites:

  • The Mindy Project (FOX), Tuesdays at 9:30pm. Mindy and Danny are a couple now, haters! Also: Adam Pally and Ike Barinholtz are comedic geniuses – show me a scene that holds a candle to the “You’ve Got Sext” texting exchanges, and I’ll… figure out a better way to end this sentence. Season three premieres TONIGHT – September 16th.
  • Modern Family (ABC), Wednesdays at 9pm. Cam and Mitch are finally married. Haley and Andy are still not dating. So many cast members, so little time (but, not really, because popularity and awards). What will happen next?! Season six premieres September 24th.
  • Mom (CBS), Mondays at 8:30pm. With Anna Faris and Allison Janney in the lead, Mom is my guilty pleasure. Season two premieres September 29th.
  • New Girl (FOX), Tuesdays at 9pm. Jess and Nick are over. So are Cece and Schmidt. Here’s to hoping this season will bring us back to the quirkiness and originality of season one, since any hope of romance has been formally denied for the time being. Season four premieres TONIGHT – September 16th.
  • Parenthood (NBC), Thursdays at 10pm. Amber is prego! Haddie is gay! The greatest and most underrated television couple of all time (Julia and Joel) are finally back on the right track. In its final season, all of our characters growing up and moving on – which is, I suppose what happens in real life. Poignant, but needed. The final season premieres September 25th.
  • Parks and Recreation (NBC), scheduling TBD. It’s the final season for Leslie Knope et al. in Pawnee. If the last three minutes of season six was any indication, it looks like we’re in for quite the ride for season seven. Final season premiere date is TBD.

New shows that I’ll be tuning in to:

  • A to Z (NBC), Thursdays at 9:30pm. Because, no offense, Cristin Mioloti deserves better than a HIMYM sequel. Pair her with Adam Feldman and create a 500 Days of Summer style rom-com television program, and I’m all ears. Premieres October 2nd.
  • Bad Judge (NBC), Thursdays at 9pm. I mean, you had me at Kate Walsh. This premise [a well-respected criminal court judge whose personal life is a falling apart hot mess] sounds like a hot mess in itself. BUT said premise has worked a thousand times over (i.e. Grey’s Anatomy, The Mindy Project, etc.). Sooo here’s to hoping Kate can work her magic and make this happen. Premieres October 2nd.
  • Marry Me (NBC), Tuesdays at 9pm. Casey Wilson is a goddess and Ken Marino is also fine. The light-hearted premise (re: unfortunate engagement) is silly and rom-commy, but something tells me these comedy die-hards (CW just off Happy Endings and KM of Party Down fame) wouldn’t have signed up for something that wasn’t worth their time and talent. Premieres October 14th.
  • Mulaney (FOX). My roommates and I have deemed this “New Seinfield.” As all of my roommates are Friends folks, that isn’t necessarily a compliment. Regardless, I’ll give any sitcom a shot, and with Fox’s sitcom track record and Mulaney’s writing cred (he co-created SNL’s Stefon!), my verdict is that this is worth checking out. Premieres Sunday, October 5th.
  • Red Band Society (FOX), Wednesdays at 9pm. Set in the children’s ward of an LA hospital, this drama features a motley crue of young patients, craving normalcy while literally fighting for their lives. It sounds out of the box, and if written and acted well, very tear-inducing, so I’m interested to what direction this will take. Premieres September 17th.