A Misanthrope’s Guide to TV: Fall Premieres

Summer is over and it’s time to put away the bathing suits, flip flops and selfie sticks (not seasonal, just a thing that should be put away indefinitely). Fall is here and while some may be counting down to the return of the pumpkin spice latte and casual trench coat, those of us with far more sporadic vibrant social lives, will be counting down to the return of our most beloved TV shows. Some of you may be thinking, “Breaking Bad is over, Mad Men is ending, and I still miss Friends. TV is dead.” Fear not, imaginary and melodramatic fatalists, this fall may not see the return of Heisenberg, but it will see the premieres of several new and exciting TV shows guaranteed to make your Saturday nights unforgettable. Here are just five 0f the most highly anticipated shows premiering this fall.

1. Marry Me–NBC, Tues. Oct. 14, 9 PM ET

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Happy Endings never got the credit it deserved, through and including its untimely cancellation last spring. Hopefully the same will not be true for creator David Caspe’s new sitcom, Marry Me. Starring Casey Wilson, of Happy Endings and short-lived SNL fame, alongside Ken Marino, of Party Down, Role Models, etc., the show profiles a couple in the wake of a botched proposal, as they attempt a proper engagement. With an impressive supporting cast (Tim Meadows left the South Side for this), Marry Me looks to be a promising premiere. And following the demise of New Girl, the world is ready for another good sitcom.

2. How to Get Away With Murder–ABC, Thurs. Oct. 25, 10 PM ET

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I don’t watch Scandal, but I feel like all I’ve heard recently is that it’s gone downhill. Luckily for Scandal and Greys Anatomy fans, producer/writer Shonda Rhimes is back this fall with a new series starring Academy Award winner Viola Davis. The show follows a criminal defense professor and her law students as they find themselves caught in a real life murder plot. A teacher engaging in illegal activity with students? Maybe the new Breaking Bad? Almost definitely not, but who knows.

3. Transparent–Amazon Prime Video, Fri. Sept. 26

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One real-life drama taking place this fall is Amazon’s attempt to capitalize on the sweeping popularity of Netflix’s original series. Like Netflix shows, Transparent will be available in full for streaming by Amazon Prime Members at the end of the month. The show stars Jeffrey Tambor as a father who transitions to life as a female. It may not be Arrested Development-good, but neither was the last season of Arrested Development, so why not try it?

4. Gotham–FOX, Mon. Sept. 22

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Much unlike his breakout role on The O.C., Ben McKenzie is starring this fall in the Batman prequel/spin-off series, Gotham. The series will focus on a young Commissioner Gordon (McKenzie) as he joins the Gotham City Police Department, investigates the murder of Thomas and Martha Wayne, and eventually meets their young son Bruce. The show will also spotlight the evolution of many future Batman villains. The supporting cast includes Jada Pinkett Smith and Netflix has already bought exclusive rights to the second season. You’ll have to watch it weekly this year, but it’ll be worth it when you’re binge-watching for hours straight next year.

5. Mulaney– FOX, Sun. Oct. 5

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I’ll be honest, Mulaney has had a rough start. Originally taped for NBC, Mulaney generated a good deal of hype last spring but was unexpectedly dropped in May of 2013. FOX picked it up for six episodes and eventually ten more, but I’m pretty sure it features a laugh track, which is typically enough to turn me off of any post-90’s sitcom. But anyone familiar with John Mulaney’s standup or enjoyed the SNL character Stefon (Mulaney’s brainchild) knows that the former SNL writer is hilarious. A Lorne Michaels producing credit doesn’t hurt either. The semi-autobiographical sitcom will star Mulaney alongside SNL alumnae Martin Short and Nasim Pedrad and is produced by Lorne Michaels. On the plus side, if the show does badly, maybe they’ll return to SNL. It could use all the help it can get.

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