Appealing TV: The Great 2014 – 2015 Television Season Kick-Off


With the sheer amount of new television premiering this week, today we’re going to focus on series premieres, and stuff I liked (or at least found noteworthy) that’s coming back. No time for finales this week!

So what else is on?

Monday, September 22
Gotham (8pm, FOX, series premiere)
In this Batman-before-Batman prequel, we have Ben McKenzie as then-Detective James Gordon and his cynical partner Harvey Bullock portrayed by Donal Logue, both wading waist-deep in the criminal element of Gotham City in the wake of the murders of Thomas and Martha Wayne. Maybe if I close my eyes, I can pretend Gotham is an alternate universe prequel to Terriers? While being voted as most promising show, that is kind of like being voted most likely to succeed. It does have potential and promise (There has been lots of early praise for Jada Pinkett Smith as mob boss [and future Penguin boss] Fish Mooney.), and may find a way to transcend a forty-five minute show of nothing but wink-wink-nudge-nudge DC Universe cameos. Worst case, I just hold my breath until the television gods properly adapt the seminal comic series Gotham Central.

Welcome to the GC, bitch.

Scorpion (9pm, CBS, series premiere)
People seem to like the Big Bang Theory (I am writing the guide on how to cope with loved-ones who say their favorite show is the Big Bang Theory). So, what if the Big Bang Theory was a light-hearted procedural (dare I say, a FUN-cederal)? Based on the life of genius computer hacker Walter O’Brien and his computer security outfit Scorpion Computer Services, Walter’s other nerds in other disciplines (Math! Psychology! Engineering!) all strive to help save the day, in what is perhaps a more nerdy NCIS.

Robert Patrick shows up in the pilot, because I think legend goes if you find Robert Patrick on the street and ask him to be in your pilot he has to say yes.

Sleepy Hollow (9pm, FOX, season premiere)
Sleepy Hollow ended up becoming one of my favorite freshman shows of last year (and one of the most diverse shows on television) with its expertly calibrated madness. (the show went from Headless Horseman with an assault rifle in the pilot to a season finale featuring Zombie George Washington) And while we are blessed with another season, I can’t help but be slightly afraid that the crazy simulator starts breaking down. I have high hopes though, trust.

Forever (ABC, 10pm, series premiere)
Picture ABC’s Castle, but instead of Nathan Fillion playing an author solving crimes with a female detective, imagine a medical examiner (portrayed by Ioan Gruffudd) solving crimes with a female detective. But! He can never die, and when killed only comes back to life naked, and in a body of water.

Other Monday Premieres
The Big Bang Theory (8pm, CBS, season premiere)

The Voice (8pm, NBC, season premiere)

The Blacklist (10pm, NBC, season premiere)

Tuesday, September 23
Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD (9pm, ABC, season premiere)
Agents of SHIELD came in with a rolling head of steam and proceeded to take a hot steaming dump all over the faces of fans of Marvel and good television for most of its first season.

Then there was a late season rally, thanks to the Captain America Winter Solider reveal, which made the show pretty decent. It makes me wonder if they were sitting on the reveal all along, and had to stall for time. The first season finale left it in a good spot for a second season. And while the show probably won’t be my own dream of a (season one) Homeland taking place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, maybe season two can finally start cashing in on the promise of a weekly show taking place in the MCU.

NCIS: New Orleans (9pm, CBS, series premiere)
Apparently there is enough Naval and Marine Corps related crime to necessitate a second spin-off of CBS’s NCIS (remember when it was called Navy NCIS in season one? It’s like people who call them ATM Machines). Scott Bakula stars along with The Shield’s/Sons of Anarchy’s C.C.H. Pounder, solving Naval and Marine Corps related crime in the Big Easy. This is probably as close as we get to The Simpsons Chief Wiggum New Orleans spin-off Look Big Daddy, it’s Regular Daddy!.

Other Tuesday Premieres
NCIS (8pm, CBS, season premiere)

Awkward. (10pm, MTV, season premiere)

Chicago Fire (10pm, NBC, season premiere)

Person of Interest (10pm, CBS, season premiere)

Faking It (10:30pm, MTV, season premiere)

Wednesday, September 24
Black-ish (9:30pm, ABC, series premiere)
Anthony Anderson and Laurence Fishburne star in this sitcom about an upper middle class black family trying to grapple with a sense of culture and identity while living in the suburbs.

Other Wednesday Premieres
The Middle (8pm, ABC, season premiere)

Survivor (8pm, CBS, season premiere)

The Goldbergs (8:30pm, ABC, season premiere)

Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (9pm, NBC, season premiere)

Chicago PD (10pm, NBC, season premiere)

Nashville (10pm, ABC, season premiere)

South Park (10pm, Comedy Central, season premiere)

Key & Peele (10:30pm, Comedy Central, season premiere)

Thursday, September 25
How To Get Away With Murder (10pm, ABC, series premiere)
While Executive Produced by Shonda Rhimes (y’all TV nerds need to be giving Rhimes her shine, she is one helluva force), How To Get Away With Murder was created by Peter Nowalk, who’s written for Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal. He spreads his wings and anchors the Shonda Rhimes Night (done right) with Viola Davis as a tough law professor whose students get entangled in ShondaLand-esqe shenanigans (including but not limited to: Murder! Sex!)

Other Thursday Premieres
Bones (8pm, FOX, season premiere)

Grey’s Anatomy (8pm, ABC, season premiere)

Scandal (9pm, ABC, season premiere)

Parenthood (10pm, NBC, season premiere)

Friday, September 26
Transparent (Amazon, series premiere)
Starring Jeffrey Tambor, Transparent is one of the shows that comes out of Amazon’s own pilot program that made it to series. In this comedy drama, Tambor plays a person coming out as transgender to a family that harbors its own set of secrets.

The Amazing Race (8pm, CBS, season premiere)
Leaving The Amazing Race in the Friday Night death slot is probably saying something about how the CBS’s Sunday nights are gonna be defined with Madam Secretary and The Good Wife.

Other Friday Premieres
Shark Tank (8pm, ABC, season premiere)

Hawaii Five-0 (9pm, CBS, season premiere)

Blue Bloods (10pm, CBS, season premiere)

Saturday, September 27
Saturday Night Live (11:30pm, NBC, season premiere)
Saturday Night Live opens its 40th season with Guardians of the Galaxy and Parks and Recreation star Chris Pratt pulling guest host duties with Ariana Grande providing musical. Also, comedian Michael Che will be replacing Cecily Strong at the Weekend Update desk and SNL alum Darrell Hammond will be the new Saturday Night Live announcer, replacing the late Don Pardo.

Sunday, September 28
Once Upon A Time (8pm, ABC, season premiere)
Once Upon A Time bringing in the Frozen characters into Storybrook is a somewhat terrifying proposition to be honest (and reeks of uh, cross-platform integrated synergy or something).

Brooklyn Nine-Nine (8:30pm, FOX, season premiere)
That’s Golden Globe winner, Brooklyn Nine-Nine to you. Having the ensemble police sitcom slum it with The Simpsons and Family on Sunday nights is a somewhat baffling choice, in order to make room for FOX’s Utopia (currently stinking up the joint on Tuesday nights before New Girl/Mindy Project). This also forces the re-branding of the Sunday night Animation Domination block into Sunday Funday which is half as effective. Or evocative for that matter.

Family Guy (9pm, FOX, season premiere)
Family Guy meets The Simpsons.

Uh oh. I smell another cheap cartoon crossover.

Resurrection (9pm, ABC, season premiere)
Let me just take this moment to just say you’d be better off watching season one of The Returned, or to just watch for the American remake on A&E helmed by Bates Motel/The Strain showrunner Carlton Cuse.

Other Sunday Premieres
The Simpsons (8pm, FOX, season premiere)

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (10pm, CBS, season premiere)

Revenge (10pm, ABC, season premiere)

See you next Monday!

the author

Paolo Sambrano adores television theme songs. You can follow him on Twitter @paolo. He is the creator of the card game, No Benefits and the writer/performer of the solo show Bi-Poseur.

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