Last week we got a few new premieres here and there, but tonight launches the week where you can truly kiss your free evenings good-bye. It’s Fall TV time, my friends. And there is no escape!

(OK, you can turn off the TV, sure, but why would you want to do a crazy thing like that?!)

CBS:

“2 Broke Girls,” 9:30 P.M. (Another “preview” episode. It premieres next week at its regular time, 8:30 P.M.)

What Is It?: Whitney Cummings’s other new sitcom, the one not starring her. This one is about two twenty-something waitresses who, despite having two seemingly very different personalities, become friends and roommates.

Why To Watch: Kat Dennings, (“Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist;” “The House Bunny;” “Thor”), is an appealing, and yes, hot, comedic actress, and she can lay down a verbal smackdown with the best of them.

Why To Turn the Channel: All CBS comedies–aside from “How I Met Your Mother”–tend to play towards the lowest common denominator audience. Also? Laugh track.

NBC:

“The Playboy Club,” 10 P.M.

What Is It?: NBC’s blatant attempt to capture some “Mad Men” fans, with a show set in Chicago’s Playboy Club in the 1960’s.

Why To Watch: “Mad Men” isn’t coming back to TV until 2012, and you desperately need a fix of 1960’s fashion and misogyny.

Why To Turn the Channel: “Mad Men” isn’t just its fashions and misogyny. It’s also a brilliantly written and acted melodrama. This show? Not so much. At times “The Playboy Club” is embarrassingly anachronistic, and at others, it fumbles in its attempts to portray “empowered” women. Time will tell if it will be able to comment as effectively on matters of gender as “Mad Men” has, but until then, boobs are its main draw.

Returning Shows:

ABC:

“Dancing With the Stars” returns, and so far all anyone can talk about is Chaz Bono and the controversy that arose after he was cast. But screw all that noise. We just want to see him tango! 8 P.M. It’s followed by “Castle” at 10 P.M.

CBS:

“How I Met Your Mother” will attempt to recover after the big stumble that was its last season. Will Ted finally meet the mother? And who the hell is Barney marrying? Find answers (or not) starting at 8 P.M. (Two episodes air back-to-back.)

It’s followed by “Two and a Half Men”, which, as you might have heard, is continuing without the presence of Charlie Sheen, (he’s been killed off), but with the addition of Ashton Kutcher who plays an Internet millionaire who is not a lady killer. 9 P.M.

And lastly on CBS, we have the return of “Hawaii Five-0” at 10 P.M.

NBC:

Ben Folds returns as a judge for the latest season of “The Sing-Off” at 8 P.M. Yes, acapella is probably the dorkiest of musical genres, but isn’t it refreshing to hear voices that aren’t autotuned, or encumbered by bad back-up musical accompaniment?

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the author

Rain Jokinen watches a lot of television and movies and then writes things about them on the Internet. She's a San Francisco native, and yeah, she'll rub that fact in your face any chance she gets.

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  • Greg Dewar

    Pan Am and the Playboy Club are both going to fail pretty quickly. The networks learned the wrong lesson from Mad Men (i.e. it’s not just about clothes and style and being mean to women) and they’re on Network TV which means they can’t say bad words or show realistic relationships. Watch them both die off fairly quickly.

    Most of the new shows this season suck. “Free Agents” was painful to watch and “Whitney” is a sad example of great comedic talent put in the bland blender, and pumping out something I wouldn’t make my dog watch.

  • Greg Dewar

    Pan Am and the Playboy Club are both going to fail pretty quickly. The networks learned the wrong lesson from Mad Men (i.e. it’s not just about clothes and style and being mean to women) and they’re on Network TV which means they can’t say bad words or show realistic relationships. Watch them both die off fairly quickly.

    Most of the new shows this season suck. “Free Agents” was painful to watch and “Whitney” is a sad example of great comedic talent put in the bland blender, and pumping out something I wouldn’t make my dog watch.