Get FREE tickets to the 10/21 Travel Show - use code TSFWP at checkout

The fall TV season is here, and between the many options delivered by premium cable channels, multiple streaming services and a new slate of shows from the major networks, there’s a lot of programming to choose from. If you were hoping that that "Peak TV" bubble was going to burst anytime soon, allowing you a moment to do something other than watch television, you can disabuse yourself of that notion tout de suite. It's TV all the time now, and like the Hydra of legend, every show that's canceled seems to sprout three in its place. Worse luck, many are excellent — so you’re sunk. Here, we run down what to watch this season as they debut weekly.

'The Good Place,' 'Speechless,' 'Lethal Weapon,' 'Pitch' and more debut the week of Sept. 18

“The Case of: JonBenét Ramsey” (CBS, 8:30 p.m. Sunday)

There's no crime like a true crime, and no true crime like one that hasn't been settled yet, and no true crime documentary like one that makes you wait weeks for its payoff. The biggest of four 20th-anniversary Ramsey TV projects this fall, naturally including a Lifetime movie.

Kevin James stars in the series "Kevin Can Wait," which premieres Sept. 19. (Dave Giesbrecht / CBS)
Kevin James stars in the series "Kevin Can Wait," which premieres Sept. 19. (Dave Giesbrecht / CBS)

“Kevin Can Wait” (CBS, 8:30 p.m. Monday) 

Kevin James stays in his comfort zone, as he takes his 21st century Ralph Kramden out for another multi-camera spin. Here he’s a newly retired policeman who can’t get that party started. Erinn Hayes plays the traditionally better-looking wife.

"The Good Place" (NBC, 10 p.m. Monday; moves to Thurs., 8:30 p.m. Sept. 22) 

Spiky afterlife comedy from Michael Schur ("Parks and Recreation") finds newly dead Kristen Bell accidentally assigned to a pastels-and-froyo heaven her worldly exploits don't qualify her for. Ted Danson is the Mr. Jordan in this scenario.

“Bull” (CBS 9 p.m. Tuesday) 

Dangerously titled legal drama about a brilliant but troubled trial consultant (Michael Weatherly) and his quirky team seems to suggest that the only path to justice is to game the jury. Co-created by and based on the earlier career of TV shrink "Dr. Phil" McGraw, it floats on a sea of broken souls.

"This Is Us" (NBC 10 p.m. Tuesday) 

Given that the pilot is a kind of O. Henry dodge, untwisted until the end, let's just call this a we've-come-for-your-feelings dramedy – that old word! – in which surprisingly connected characters want to be seen for who they really are. Something like that.

"Speechless" (ABC, 8:30 p.m. Wednesday) 

ABC continues its drive for diversity in single-camera family comedies – no less admirable for being so evidently intentional – with Minnie Driver as the driven mother of teenager Micah Fowler, who has cerebral palsy. Two other kids make  three.

​​​​​​“Designated Survivor” (ABC, 10 p.m., Wednesday) 

Kiefer Sutherland in what would be a minor role in "24," as a Cabinet secretary who becomes president after a terrorist attack kills everyone more important. Natascha McElhone is the new first lady; Kal Penn, who worked in the actual White House, is working in this pretend one.

"Lethal Weapon" (Fox, 8 p.m., Wednesday) 

Televisionification of the brawny detective film franchise in which a lone wolf with a death wish (Clayne Crawford) and a family man with the opposite of that (Damon Wayans Sr.) somehow make it work.

"Notorious" (ABC, 9 p.m. Thursday) 

Heavy-breathing melodrama in which cable news producer Piper Perabo and celebrity lawyer Daniel Sunjata – standing in for producers Wendy Walker and Mark Geragos -- shape reality to their ends. Will leave you feeling good neither about the news nor the law.

“Pitch” (Fox, 9 p.m. Thursday) 

Kylie Bunbury plays the first woman in Major League Baseball in this straight-faced grown-up take on "The Bad News Bears"; things go no more smoothly than you would imagine. The San Diego Padres provide the real-world team and park.

"MacGyver" (CBS, 8 p.m. Friday) 

Comical spy adventure reboot leaves the mullet, or most of it, back in 1992 but keeps the Swiss Army knife. Lucas Till is the new Richard Dean Anderson, saving the world with a paper clip and whatever.

"The Exorcist" (Fox, 9 p.m. Friday) 

Blockbuster 1970s demonic possession novel/film survives the television transition with its cinematic creepiness intact. Ben Daniels and Alfonso Herrera are the old- and new-school priests called to de-Satanize the offspring of Geena Davis, now with two daughters and a husband (Alan Ruck) losing his wits. The central question – will they play "Tubular Bells"? – is for you to find out.

Latest updates

Copyright © 2017, CT Now
51°