“The League” (FX)
Tonight, September 16, 10:30 p.m.
This is also one of FX’s best shows. The show follows the ups and downs of the members of a fantasy football league. Similar to ‘Always Sunny,’ the members are constantly screwing each other over through blackmail and whatever leverage they can hold over each other’s heads. All of the members seemed to have transitioned into their 30’s a little too quickly and are trying to hold on to that last bit of bro through their fantasy league. Their league follows them in almost every facet of their lives. For instance, in the first season, the first pick of the draft was given up for one of the member’s criminal client’s lesser sentencing. Whatever strategy the members use to get that competitive advantage, it always follows them to their real lives and usually gets them into trouble.
“Boardwalk Empire” (HBO)
Sunday, September 19, 9 p.m.
HBO’s new blockbuster series explores the beginning of Prohibition and organized crime in the early 1920s. Nucky Thompson (Steve Buscemi) is a corrupt politician in Atlantic City who recognizes the profits that can be made from the sale and distribution of alcohol during Prohibition. “Boardwalk Empire” also showcases a young Al Capone (Michael Pitt), just getting his feet wet as a gangster. Alcohol, sex, and jazz ruled the boardwalk in the 1920s and this show is guaranteed to deliver entertainment and impeccable historical detail every Sunday night. Oh yeah, did I mention the pilot is directed and the show is executive produced by Martin Scorsese?
Monday, September 20, 8 p.m.
At some point don’t you think the other doctors will just start listening to House and agree with him on all his diagnoses? And why aren’t sick people from around the country, making Lourdes-like pilgrimages to his hospital yet?
Monday, September 20, 9 p.m.
It seems like NBC has been hyping this for months, trying to cast it as the next “Lost.” The problem with shows like this is that you get hooked into them because everything is so f*cked up and mysterious, and then they get canceled after a season and a half and you never find out what anything meant. Come to think of it, did anyone who watched “Lost” know what it all meant seven seasons later?
“Hawaii Five-O” (CBS)
Monday, September 20, CBS, 10 p.m.
Normally re-makes like this don’t work or interest us, but we’ve really enjoyed Scott Caan’s performance this season on “Entourage,” and we’re betting high bikini babe action in this Honolulu-set drama.
“Running Wilde” (FOX)
Tuesday, September 21, 9:30 p.m.
The creators of “Arrested Development” are back with a new show is essentially about the same thing: stupid, crazy rich people. Steve Wilde (Will Arnett) plays an unbelievably rich idiot who is completely out of touch with reality who’s desperately trying to get (or buy) back his childhood sweetheart, the stunning girl-next-door Keri Russell.
On the next page, “Modern Family,” “$#*! My Dad Says,” “Dexter,” “Eastbound and Down” and more…
Wednesday, September 22, 8 p.m.
Speaking of “Lost,” creator J.J. Abrams’ latest show is this drama about a couple who try to rekindle their troubled marriage by going back into the killer spy business. She might have a weird name, but co-star Gugu Mbatha-Raw is hot and definitely on our radar.
Wednesday, September 22, 9 p.m.
The best new comedy on network TV last year (and deserved winner of the Emmy) returns for its sophomore season. Can it live up to the now incredibly high expectations? As long as Sofia Vergara is still there, we’re betting yes.
“$#*! My Dad Says” (CBS)
Thursday, Sept. 23, 8:30 p.m.
Justin Halpern’s hilarious Twitter feed and maybe even better book gets the sitcom treatment, with William Shatner in the title role. Early buzz on the pilot wasn’t overwhelmingly positive, but how can you go wrong with the Shat?
“The Office” and “30 Rock” (NBC)
Thursday, September 23, 9 p.m., 8:30 p.m.
Watching “The Office” is about as awkward as taking a dump at work when you know who’s wearing the shoes in the next stall over. Nevertheless the show is absolute genius and incredibly funny, and will only get better as Michael Scott (Steve Carell) prepares to leave Dunder Mifflin and the show at the end of the season. “30 Rock” returns for another season of Tracy Morgan and Alec Baldwin genius, with extended guest spots by Matt Damon and Elizabeth Blanks on tap.
Thursday, September 23, 8 p.m.
NBC’s other two Thursday-night comedies are definitely worth a try. Although “Community” appears to be a little dry in the commercials, it’s actually a pretty funny show. It’s about a study group at a community college that consists of people from all different walks of life. The main character, Jeff Winger (“The Soup’s” Joel McHale), is an ex-lawyer who was de-bared for forging his college degree and never actually attending law school. UPDATE: As a commenter pointed out, “Parks and Rec” isn't back until mid-season. We can't recommend the stand-in, “Outsourced,” until we've seen it.
Sunday, September 26, 9 p.m.
America’s favorite serial killer returns at a pivotal point in Dexter Morgan’s (Michael C. Hall) never-ending journey to rid the world of other murderers who kill for the wrong reasons. This compelling thriller/drama leaves you on the edge of your seat every episode. Hopefully this season will focus more on Dexter’s justified killings and less on his personal life.
“Bored to Death” (HBO)
Sunday, September 26, 10 p.m.
A little dry and Brooklyn hipsterish for some, this HBO comedy stars Jonathan Schwartzman, Zach Galifianakis, and Ted Danson and has a loyal following.
“Eastbound and Down” (HBO)
Sunday, September 26, 10:30 p.m.
White-trash pitcher Kenny f*ckin’ Powers is back in full force as he opens up the new season playing for a Mexican minor league team. His over-the-top, misdirected showmanship got him kicked out of the majors prior to the first season of the show. After he got a little bit of his mojo back at the end of last season, he is picked up by a Mexican team and is determined to make his comeback.
On the next page, the October premiere dates for “South Park, “Lingerie,” “Friday Night Lights,” and “The Walking Dead”…
“South Park” (Comedy Central)
Wednesday, October 6, 10 p.m.
The foul-mouthed fourth graders are back in full force this fall. No topic is off limits for creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker. “South Park” is one of the best shows of our generation and hopefully won't disappoint this season. My take on last season was that episodes were generally hit or miss. Either they are absolutely hysterical or so f*cked up only a few sick bastards are able to laugh at whatever topic they are taking on.
Friday, Oct. 1, Midnight
Two sexy lingerie designers battle it out in New York on “After-Dark” Cinemax. Maybe your only reason to stay in on Friday night.
“Friday Night Lights” (DirectTV)
Wednesday, October 27, 9 p.m.
The fifth and final season of the most under-appreciated show on television (by viewers if not critics) begins its DirectTV run. NBC will air the full season probably beginning in the early spring. UPDATE: The show is in snydication on ABC Family everyday at 6 p.m. Good to know. Thanks reader!
“The Walking Dead” (AMC)
Sunday, October 31, 8 p.m.
Zombies. Texas. Created and directed by Frank Darabont (“Shawshank Redemption”). Watch this trailer and set your DVR for the Halloween-night premiere.