Fall TV Preview: Time to set the DVR

Sunday Signal

If summer television has made you question the future of television, have faith. It’s true, that as much as I love Rob Riggle, ABC’s summer show “Holey Moley” was unwatchable, as was much of this summer’s programing.

We can put that all behind us now, because the new Fall television season is almost here. Not only will there be a 39thseason of “Survivor,” there is a diverse array of new shows to sample. Several new programs look promising, if they can live up to their potential.

I look forward to the new Billy Gardell comedy from the King of Comedy, Chuck Lorre, (“Mike and Molly,” “Big Bang Theory,” “Mom” and “Two and a Half Men”). 

Fox will premiere a slate of new dramas and comedies midseason. It will offer up four new shows this fall. I’m not sure that I call “WWE’s Smackdown Live” a “new” show, but Fox is touting it as such. 

CBS offers five new shows this fall, NBC is premiering three shows and ABC is giving us four. The CW will debut three new shows. 


Jimmy Smits is back on NBC in “Bluff City Law,” and ABC will capitalize on the success of “Black-ish” with a new comedy, “Mixed-ish.” 

Patricia Heaton (“The Middle” and “Everybody Loves Raymond”) is also back with a new sitcom on CBS, “Carol’s Second Act.”

The List 

Here are the premiere dates for Fall’s new network shows.

Sept. 13

Series premiere: Red Bull Peaking (The CW), 9 p.m.

An extreme sports docu-series.

Sept. 23

Series premiere: Bob (Hearts) Abishola (CBS), 8:30 p.m.

Sitcom. A middle-aged compression sock businessman from Detroit unexpectedly falls for his cardiac nurse, a Nigerian immigrant, while recovering from a heart attack. 

Series premiere: All Rise (CBS), 9 p.m.

CBS PR describes the show as “A courthouse drama that follows the chaotic, hopeful and sometimes absurd lives of its judges, prosecutors, and public defenders, as they work with bailiffs, clerks, and cops to get justice for the people of Los Angeles amidst a flawed legal process.” 

Series premiere: Prodigal Son (Fox), 9 p.m.

You think your family is fouled up? This show is about a criminal profiler, whose father is an infamous serial killer known as “The Surgeon.”

Series premiere: Bluff City Law (NBC), 10 p.m.

Courtroom drama. Starring Jimmy Smits and Caitlin McGee as a father and daughter who reunite to change the world.

Sept. 24

Series premiere: Mixed-ish (ABC), 9 p.m.

Sitcom. Black-ish spinoff. Rainbow Johnson (Arica Himmel) recounts her experience growing up in a mixed-race family in the ’80s. 

Series premiere: Emergence (ABC), 10 p.m.

Thriller. A police chief takes in a young child she finds near the site of a mysterious accident. Strange things happen. Followed by appearances by “The Men in Black.”

Sept. 25

Series premiere: Stumptown (ABC), 10 p.m.

Based on the Stumptown graphic novel series. Dex Parios (Cobie Smulders), is a strong, assertive and sharp-witted army veteran in Portland, Ore. who becomes a PI.

Sept. 26

Series premiere: Perfect Harmony (NBC), 8:30 p.m.

Bradley Whitford stars in this comedy about finding inspiration in the most unlikely places.

Series premiere: The Unicorn (CBS), 8:30 p.m.

Walton Goggins stars as “The Unicorn,” the perfect single guy, employed, attractive and with a proven track record of commitment.

Series premiere: Sunnyside (NBC), 9:30 p.m.

Kal Penn stars as a failed York City Councilman hired by a diverse group of idealists who dream of becoming American citizens and believe he can help. 

Series premiere: Carol’s Second Act (CBS), 9:30 p.m.

Patricia Heaton stars in new a comedy about a woman who reinvents herself after raising her children and getting divorced: pursuing her dream of becoming a doctor.

Series premiere: Evil (CBS), 10 p.m.

Psychological mystery that examines the origins of evil. The series focuses on a skeptical female psychologist who joins a priest-in-training and a carpenter as they investigate the Church’s backlog of unexplained mysteries, including miracles, demonic possessions and hauntings.

Sept. 29

Series premiere: Bless the Harts (Fox), 8:30 p.m.

A new offering for “Animation Domination.” 

Oct. 2

Series premiere: Almost Family (Fox), 9 p.m.

Drama based on the Australian television series, Sisters, about a woman who grew up as an only child who discovers her dad fathered many other children as a sperm donor.

Oct. 4

Series premiere: WWE’s Smackdown Live (Fox) 8 p.m. 

An entire night devoted to … this. 

Oct. 6

Series premiere: Batwoman (The CW), 8 p.m.

Set in a timeline where Batman has abandoned Gotham City this is another show set in the “Arrowverse” universe. 

Series premiere: Kids Say the Darndest Things (ABC), 8 p.m.

Hosted by Tiffany Haddish who gets kids to say “the darndest things.”

Oct. 9

Series premiere: Nancy Drew (The CW), 9 p.m.

Updated for the 2000’s, this isn’t your mother’s “Nancy Drew.” 

Dates to remember:

Sept. 22: The 71stPrimetime Emmy Awards will air on Fox.

Sept. 25 Season premiere: Survivor (CBS), 8 p.m.

The Emmy Award-winning series returns for its 39th season, themed “Island of the Idols.” This edition features two legendary winners, Boston Rob Mariano and Sandra Diaz-Twine, who return to the game to serve as mentors to a group of 18 new players. Combined, Boston Rob and Sandra have played more than 200 days in this game and plan to share their knowledge with the new castaways, but won’t be competing for the money. During the 39 days, these new players will visit the Island of the Idols and learn skills and strategy from these “idols.” 

Sept. 26: “Thursday Night Football” will kick-off on Fox. 

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