Mercy (NBC) – 8pm. The ads for this show make it look absolutely unbearably awful. Plus, stop claiming to be the only show about nurses, you morons, or I’m sending Nurse Jackie over to kick your ass. I strongly suspect the title of this series is going to be the rallying cry of everyone who watches it. Then again, JAMES TUPPER, people. It’s not like I can just NOT tune in.
Sit-coms (not watching): The New Adventures of Old Christine (CBS) – 8pm, Gary Unmarried (CBS) – 8:30pm, Cougar Town (ABC) – 9:30pm, Modern Family (ABC) – 9pm. Of these four, the only one I’m even remotely intrigued by is Modern Family, which is a mockumentary-style sit-com about an American family being filmed for a Dutch reality show. But I’ll wait for you guys to tell me if it’s any good first — don’t leave me hangin’. As for Cougar Town, my plan for that one is to Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal it into disexistence. If I can’t see it, it can’t see me. Annnnd POOF.
Crime shows (watching due to irrational inability to quit even when quitting is the only logical move): Criminal Minds (CBS) – 9pm, Law & Order: SVU (NBC) – 9pm, CSI:New York (CBS) – 10pm. I still really enjoy Criminal Minds, even though it has gotten sort of repetitive. Stop me if you’ve heard this profile before: age 20-40, white male, issues with mom, works full-time and appears normal to the neighbors, has a dungeon in his basement. I just described the “unsub” from 95% of the episodes from last season, I swear. Nevertheless, I have a mondo crush on Joe Mantegna and that goes a long way towards keeping me engaged.
Law & Order: SVU, I would argue, has sucked almost unbearably for at least the last two seasons, if not longer. I need to let it go and for some reason find myself unable to. Here’s hoping it frees me like ER finally did, but doesn’t take nearly as long to get around to it.
Lastly, CSI: New York is the only one of the three CSI series I tune into with any degree of regularity anymore. The original series has been too hit-or-miss for about the last three years and Lawrence Fishburne is not doing it any favors (not his fault, I would argue — the conceit of his addition to the team was just really lame and unbelievable and I haven’t gotten past that yet). CSI:NY got a lot better in its second season, so if you bailed after its awful first, it might be worth checking it out again. It’s got some good characters and some annoying ones, but Gary Sinise is a steady helmsman, and, of course, I still love Melina Kanakaredes from her days on Due South and always, always will.
Eastwick (ABC) – 10pm. The ads for this show make it look absolutely unbearably awful. Hey, deja vu! I’m not crazy about two out of the three actresses running this machine, and the third one I’m only not not-crazy about because I have no idea who she is. That probably bodes significantly less than well. Then again, PAUL GROSS. Curses! Somebody in charge of casting all the terrible shows this year certainly has my number.
Flash Forward (ABC) – 8pm. This time-bending sci-fi show centers on a bizarre incident that causes all of mankind to black out for two minutes, during which time they each get a glimpse of themselves six months in the future. It’s obviously been inspired by Lost, which was reason enough at first for me NOT to want to tune in. I changed my mind, though, when I read two things about this show. The first is that we’ll get to the “future” by the end of the first season — no holding over what’s in the metaphoric hatch for a ridiculously long time. The second is that the series creators have already mapped out the full five years of the show. This gives me hope it will have neither the constant frustrations nor the time-killing flailings of Lost. As for the physics that make my brain hurt, I’m always happy to sign up for more pain. Especially with Joseph Fiennes and Courtney B. Vance at the helm.
Grey’s Anatomy (ABC) – 9pm. Confession time: D-O-N-E.
CSI (CBS) – 9pm. As I said above, this series is not really doing it for me any more. Too many favorite characters gone, too many weird restructurings of the rest of the staff in the lab, too many repetitive storylines. I’ll probably watch, but not with regularity. Fishburne, get out while you still can! (By the way, if you get the chance to see the CSI exhibit that is touring various science museums in the U.S. right now, go! It’s totally fun!)
The Mentalist (CBS) – 10pm. I watched the first two or three episodes of this one last year and wasn’t impressed enough to want to make space for it in my weekly schedule. I’ve since heard that it got pretty good there towards the end, but I’m probably too far behind at this point to ever get caught up. Love Simon Baker, but can’t help thinking whenever I watch this show that I’d rather be watching Psych.
Law & Order (NBC) – 8pm. Nope.
Ghost Whisperer (CBS) – 8pm. Nope.
Dollhouse (Fox) – 9pm. Yep. Though it took me almost the entire first season to warm up to this Joss Whedon show, by the end, I was thoroughly hooked. When it finally broke free of the “prostitute conceit of the week” stories and really delved into the background stuff, it got incredibly engrossing. Plus, this season adds a dash of Jamie Bamber to the mix; I love that little bunny! Dear Fox: Try not to frak this one up, okay?
Medium (CBS) – 9pm (new network!). I’m beyond grateful that CBS rescued this series when NBC gave it the boot last summer. It may not be brilliant, but it’s thoughtful and well-acted, and that goes a long way in my book. Glad to have it back, and so soon too (last year we had to wait until January for it). Major crush on Jake Weber, of course. That probably goes without saying at this point.
I won’t be watching any of these, but here’s what’s back Sunday (I do watch Dexter, but have to wait for DVD on that one).
Amazing Race (CBS) – 8pm. Too stressful.
Dexter (Showtime) – 9pm. Too expensive.
Family Guy (Fox) – 9pm. Too cartoonish.
American Dad (Fox) – 9:30pm. Also too cartoonish.
Brothers and Sisters (ABC) – 10pm. Too Sally Field.
Cold Case (CBS) – 10pm. Too shut the hell up.