WHAT TO WATCH: FALL 2013 (LJ EDITION)

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So CJ claims each month he will be posting a list of “things to watch.”  I like his idea, but am going to put my own twist on it.  Below you will find a list of shows that I am most excited about watching this fall.  In other words, if you are exactly like me (which clearly everyone is), these are the shows you should be watching.  As you can tell, I possess a certain loyalty for returning shows, so unfortunately, my list is skewed a little against the new shows we will be seeing this fall.  This shouldn’t be taken to mean that I will not be watching any new programming over the next couple months.  If I am being honest, it just takes me a bit of time to jump onboard with anything new (consider this a character flaw).  Here we go:

10.  The X Factor (FOX, Wednesday, September 11 8:00PM) – I can already see CJ’s eyes rolling when he sees that The X Factor made my top 10 list.  Admittedly, I did not make it through Season 1 of The X Factor, but I vowed last year to give B. Spears my support and stuck it out.  And, you know what, I still find Mr. Simon Cowell amusing.  Plus, I have a huge girl crush on Demi Lovato (also, I should probably mention that my musical tastes match those of a 12 year old girl).  Now, unfortunately, Brittney is gone this year, but Demi and Simon remain.  I watch this show for the judges and not for the talent that is “discovered,” and I am excited to see what is in store with Kelly Rowland added to the panel.  I am cautiously optimistic. [Full disclosure, I watched last night’s premiere and I didn’t hate it.  I actually liked a lot.  Second episode is on tonight.  Set your DVRs.]

9.  Psych:  The Musical (USA, Sunday, December 15 9:00PM) – I know what you are thinking, what the heck is this?  Unfortunately, that means that you have not been watching the past seven seasons of Psych.  Let me tell you, you have been missing out.  This comedy is very clever and very witty.  Yes, it is pretty crazy at times, but it’s characters are incredibly loveable.  And, Dule Hill is, as always, amazing.  You have until December to get caught up.  Trust me, you will want to.

8.  Raising Hope (FOX, Friday, November 8 9:00PM) – We are now on Season 4 of Raising Hope and it has a new time slot.  I sincerely hope this is not the beginning of the end.  I feel like this show does not get enough credit.  Admittedly, I have been a skeptic.  But the fact of the matter is, this show is hilarious.  Yes, the characters are somewhat ridiculous, but this show has a lot of heart and I can guarantee that you will enjoy each and every episode.  Plus, Hope is so dang cute, how can you not love it??

7.  The Carrie Diaries (CW, Friday, October 25 8:00PM) – I will fully disclose that I was and am a huge Sex & The City fan.  I mean, I don’t have any t-shirts, but I will watch reruns pretty much anytime they are on.  Initially, I was skeptical about this show and it did take me until May to finish watching Season 1 on my DVR.  But, you know what, this show turned out pretty good.  AnnaSophia Robb is great and I am now a huge fan.  (Did you see her in The Way Way Back this summer??).  This is obviously a light-hearted show, but it is certainly entertaining and I am looking forward to Season 2 this fall.

6. Bob’s Burgers (FOX, Sunday, September 29 8:30PM) – If you haven’t ever watched Bob’s Burgers, then your life is a sad, sad place.  True statement.  And, this is coming from someone who doesn’t really like cartoons.  It is probably worth it to watch each episode just so that you can see the clever burger pun Bob has put on his restaurant chalkboard.  This show is clever and witty and undeniably funny.  Heck, Jon Hamm guest starred as a talking toilet last season.  That should be enough to convince you right there.

5.  Nashville (ABC, Wednesday, September 25 10:00PM) – As much as I didn’t want to like this show last year, I got roped in hard.  The beginning of the first season admittedly started out shaky, but mid-way through I was hooked. Yes, it is definitely soapy, but just accept the show for what it is and jump on board.  What became of Rayna and Deacon (we ended with the in a horrible car crash), is Peggy having Teddy’s baby, what will Scarlett’s answer be, will Jonathan Jackson’s hair still be most excellent?  All questions I need answers to.

4. New Girl (FOX, Tuesday, September 19 9:00PM) – Last season New Girl proved that even a “happy” couple can be funny.  This, of course, is no easy thing to accomplish and I hope that New Girl keeps it up this season.  We left last season with Nick and Jess agreeing to give couplehood a shot, while Schmidt was asked to chose between Cece and Elizabeth.  I can’t wait to see what this season has in store.  Also, extremely excited for Damon Waynes Jr. to return as Coach.

3. Arrow (CW, Wednesday, October 9 8:00PM) – Ranking my top three shows, was extremely difficult.  The amount of time I have spent thinking about it, is embarrassing.  Arrow’s first season was incredibly solid.  And, the finale was action packed.  I will not say how the season ended because that is how much I want you to watch the first season before October 9.  I am not kidding, DO IT.

2. Scandal (ABC, Thursday, October 3 8:00PM) – Kerry Washington, Scott Foley, and Joshua Malina.  That should be enough for you right there.  But, just in case it’s not, Olivia’s affair is now public and we know that Jake has been taking orders from Olivia’s dad.  What is going to happen next?  There is no way to predict.

1. The Walking Dead (AMC, Sunday, October 13 9:00PM) – Season 3 of this show was fantastic, especially the first half.  It fully solidified the fact that I love zombies.  I do.  Granted, I am actually afraid that the zombie apocalypse will happen (I know, I wish I was kidding…but it really could happen!) after watching this show, but that is just how good it is.  We left off with Rick and his gang admitting a bunch of Woodbury residents at the Prison, but the Governor is still out there.  And, I am very concerned about Daryl after all that happened with Merle at the end of last season.

What are y’all excited to watch?

-LJ

*Other shows considered:  The Blacklist, Parks & Recreation, Grey’s Anatomy, Homeland, 30 for 30, The Michael J. Fox Show, The Talking Dead, S.H.I.E.L.D., the 65th Annual Emmys.

**Times listed are for the East Coast.

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What to Watch: September 2013

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Each month here on YBTV, I am going to try to provide a list of things to watch out for (be it premieres, notable episodes, special events, whatever) in the month ahead. Now, September is obviously a very busy month because of the upcoming beginning of the Fall TV season, so this list is going to be tougher to narrow down to 10 than others (I also plan on writing up a list of the new shows I’m looking forward to in the next week or 2), but alas, I shall try. Counting down from 10 to 1, here we go:

10. Master’s of Sex (Showtime, Sunday, September 29 at 9 PM) — Showtime and I don’t necessarily have the greatest track record (see Homeland and Ray Donavan), but that is not to say they get everything wrong. Shameless is without a doubt one of my favorite shows, and like it’s lead Emmy Rossum, I expect much out of Lizzy Caplan here. But, she doesn’t have to do it all alone, throw in some Michael Sheen, and a intriguing story, and we hopefully have the makings of a solid show.

9. Parks and Recreation (NBC, Thursday, September 26 at 7 PM) — Though season 5 may not have ended on the high note we’ve come to expect for this show (it’s tough writing multiple finales in the same season, and the Ben/Leslie wedding episode was a perfect finale), that does not take away for the excitement of another year back in the Pawnee Parks and Rec department with these people who we love to watch.

8. S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC, Tuesday, September 24 at 7 PM) — How in the world is Agent Coulson still alive? That’s really all I want to know. Also, it’s Wheedon. So people like me are contractually obligated to watch (how I miss thee Firefly).

7. The 65th Annual Primetime Television Emmy Awards (CBS, Sunday, September 22 at 7 PM) — See, CBS made my list this month! Is this the year that Jon Hamm finally breaks through and wins that elusive Emmy?!?! No, probably not. But it’s possible. Season 5A of Breaking Bad was not as strong as the previous seasons with which Bryan Cranston has won and beat Mr. Hamm.

6. New Girl (FOX, Tuesday, September 17 at 8 PM) — Season 2 of New Girl was definitely not as popular ratings wise, but the show took a significant step forward creatively. The expansion of the focus of the show from Jess, to Jess, Nick and Schmidt (and Wintson, occasionally) was such a strong move for the show. It makes it a must watch on a weekly basis.

5. Sons of Anarchy (FX, Tuesday, September 10 at 9 PM) — I have a troubled history with this particular FX show. That history is mostly due to the occasionally frustrating writing decisions of Kurt Sutter and Co. (i.e., making implausible leaps of reality just because you enjoy working with your real life wife or you like the performance of Ron Pearlman) that are so often an annoyance with this show. But, the always solid performances of Charlie Hunnam, Mark Boone Junior, Kim Coates and Theo Rossi have kept me coming back season after season.

4. The League (FXX, Wednesday, September 4 at 930 PM) — Is there anything insightful to actually say about The League? I don’t think there is. I just enjoy watching the people on this show say and do really mean things to one another while discussing their fantasy football league (we also really need to do something about their 8 team league, that’s a joke).

3. Luther (BBC America, Tuesday, September 3 through Friday, September 6) — This 4 part series is going to run over 4 consecutive nights this week, which is just fine by me. Luther (like Sherlock) is best in small doses. But, here is all you really need to know is: Idris Elba. Ruth Wilson. John Luther. Alice Morgan.  The end.

2. Boardwalk Empire (HBO, Sunday, September 8 at  8 PM) — The season 4 premiere brings us some new additions which have had me excited since I heard the rumors. I’m a crazy big fan of the completely and totally underrated Jeffrey Wright, and always enjoy Ron Livingston (just saw him in “Drinking Buddies,” where he was excellent). For an HBO show with lots of “prestige” behind it (Scorcese as an exec producer and brought by a team from The Sopranos), this has always been an under watched and under appreciated show for HBO.  I will never understand why. It could be the slow burn of the first half of each season, but each and every time, it pays off so magically with some of the best closing stretches of episodes on TV. More people should watch and love this show.

1. Breaking Bad series finale (AMC, Sunday, September 29 at 8 PM) — This blog is named after Breaking Bad, and so far pretty much all we have been talking about is Breaking Bad. So I don’t feel like I need to explain how exciting this is for LJ and myself. It’s the series finale of one of the 5 or 6 greatest shows in television history. It needs to be watched and dissected by all.

-CJ