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SUNDAY

Betrayal

10 p.m., ABC, debuts Sept. 29.

It’s about: Adulterous lovers – a photographer and an attorney – find themselves on opposite sides of a murder case that has personal connections for both.

C+

Washburn’s take: A complicated but intriguing plot bogs down in the telling.

MONDAY

We Are Men

8:30 p.m., CBS, debuts Sept. 30.

​It’s about: Four newly single guys bond at their apartment building and do silly stuff together.

C-

Washburn’s take: Nothing new here, but there are a few amusing moments in an otherwise predictable sitcom that relies on the gang’s immaturity for laughs.

Mom

9 p.m., CBS, debuts Sept. 23.

​It’s about: Single mom trying to raise her kids on a waitress’s salary is further burdened by the return of her own mother, a recovering alcoholic.

B

Washburn’s take: As the bickering moms, Anna Faris and Allison Janney have great chemistry and funny lines. Well worth a visit.

Sleepy Hollow

9 p.m., Fox, debuts Monday.

It’s about: Ichabod Crane awakens in the present and, after shaking off his confusion, helps police investigate a murder involving a headless horseman.

B

Washburn’s take: Yeah, it sounds ridiculous. But as the mystery unravels, secret witches and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse join the action and “Sleepy Hollow” turns into a metaphysical adventure matching the dark, twisted tone of the Washington Irving classic.

Hostages

10 p.m., CBS, debuts Sept. 23.

It’s about: A surgeon about to operate on the president is told to kill him instead by a group of terrorists who hold her family hostage.

D-

Washburn’s take: There’s nothing predictable in this dark and heavy drama, but how long it can continue its premise is the biggest riddle.

The Blacklist

10 p.m., NBC, debuts Sept. 23.

It’s about: One of the world’s greatest criminals suddenly surrenders to the FBI and offers to work as a consultant for the agency helping to round up its most-wanted on one condition: he gets to work with a rookie FBI profiler.

A+

Washburn’s take: Just when your eyes start rolling about the Hannibal Lecter set-up, “Blacklist” takes off and never stops thumping. James Spader is a masterly mastermind as the shadowy bad guy known as the “Concierge of Crime.”

TUESDAY

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

8 p.m., ABC, debuts Sept. 24.

It’s about: A slick, secret government agency well endowed with fantastic gizmos hunts down super-powered mutants from the Marvel comic-book universe.

B

Washburn’s take: From gifted sci-fi producer Joss Whedon, this high-energy action series picks up where the cinematic “Avengers” leaves off, with Clark Gregg in the role of command agent Phil Coulson, who returns from his theatrical-release death. Ming-Na Wen dispenses martial-arts punch and comic relief as part of the team. For comic cultists, this is a must-see, if only to prepare for debate about continuity with the movie.

The Originals

8 p.m., CW, debuts Oct. 3, moves to regular time slot Oct. 8.

It’s about: Vampires have the upper hand against witches in a nasty struggle in modern-day New Orleans. Members of the original vampire clan return to claim their legacy, only to hit resistance from the new ruling class.

B

Washburn’s take: This spinoff of “Vampire Diaries” has a fitting gothic look and menacing performances to match, including a werewolf trying to make a comeback. As a supernatural soap opera, it delivers a scheming cast right off the bat.

Dads

8 p.m., Fox, debuts Tuesday.

It’s about: Clueless, meddling dads move in on their hip and successful sons’ lives.

D

Washburn’s take: There’s a loud laugh track that will cue you when to chuckle, and this so-called comedy sorely needs it.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine

8:30, Fox, debuts Sept. 17

It’s about: A nutcase precinct gets a by-the-book commander determined to whip things into shape.

B

Washburn’s take: If writers dial down the farce and play up the comedy, this could be one of the hits of the year. Andre Braugher steals the show as the sleuths’ deadpan leader. Shows promise.

The Goldbergs

9 p.m., ABC, debuts Sept. 24.

It’s about: A quarrelsome family navigates the challenges of the disco ’80s.

B

Washburn’s take: Good chemistry and lots of shouting in this funny household, led by the kids’ “smother” Wendi McLendon-Covey, who could carry the show alone. George Segal plays the seditious grandfather, coaching the little ones on the ways of the world.

Trophy Wife

9:30 p.m., ABC, debuts Sept. 24.

It’s about: Rich guy acquires party-girl spouse who must make nice with his two exes and the kids.

B

Washburn’s take: Despite the stereotypes, there’s actually a warm family comedy here. Malin Akerman sparkles as wife No. 3, trying to fit into a complicated dynamic and sometimes losing her way.

Lucky 7

10 p.m. ABC, debuts Sept. 24.

It’s about: Co-workers at a Queens car wash win the lottery, which is not necessarily a good thing.

D

Washburn’s take: Some prosper, some fail as the money rolls in. Either way, you’ll find little value in this so-so drama.

WEDNESDAY

Back in the Game

8:30 p.m., ABC, debuts Sept. 25.

It’s about: Single mom moves back home and gets drafted as Little League coach.

B

Washburn’s take: Maggie Lawson scores as Coach Mom, playing off her washed-up pro-ball pop played by James Caan. There’s a “Bad News Bears” subplot, of course, as this comedy swings for the fences.

Tomorrow People

9 p.m., CW, debuts Oct. 9.

It’s about: A shadow war between the “Tomorrow People,” who have special powers, and the “Ultras,” the agents sent to eradicate them.

C

Washburn’s take: There’s a struggle between good and evil, though it’s not always clear who’s on which side. Throw in typical teenage angst with the onset of peculiar abilities mistaken for a psychiatric condition and you’ve got a serviceable action drama.

Super Fun Night

9:30 p.m., ABC, debuts Oct. 2.

It’s about: Lawyer has to lead her gal pals out on the town when romance beckons.

D

Washburn’s take: Up-and-coming comedian Rebel Wilson’s talents seem wasted in this zany outing that falls flat on laughs. Disappointing.

Ironside

10 p.m., NBC, debuts Oct. 2.

It’s about: Detective in a wheelchair switches coasts and does his sleuthing in New York.

F

Washburn’s take: Blair Underwood does his best in the title role with the material he’s given in this smug, overwrought remake of the classic, but it just doesn’t make the grade.

THURSDAY

Once Upon a Time in Wonderland

8 p.m., ABC, debuts Oct. 10.

It’s about: Is Alice insane, or does she really visit a magical, fantasy realm down the rabbit hole?

Unreviewed

Washburn’s take: As yet unpreviewed, but snippets from the network show clever special effects and costuming. May be worth checking out because of its unconventional approach.

The Millers

8:30 p.m., CBS, debuts Sept. 26.

It’s about: Divorced son suddenly has to live with separated mom.

D

Washburn’s take: A talented cast – with Will Arnett as son, Margo Martindale as mom and Beau Bridges as dad – is wasted in this trashy, flat comedy that relies on flatulence jokes for laughs.

Welcome to the Family

8:30 p.m., NBC, debuts Oct. 3.

It’s about: A teenage pregnancy forces potential in-laws to get over their differences.

B

Washburn’s take: Despite all its shouting, there’s a lot to like in the clash of these opposite families having to find middle ground when their kids head to the altar.

The Crazy Ones

9 p.m., CBS, debuts Sept. 26.

It’s about: Father-daughter team take far different approaches in running their struggling Chicago ad agency.

C

Washburn’s take: With ​Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar in the lead roles, how can you go wrong? It doesn’t exactly, but then again something’s not clicking here as the comedy is overpowered by the sappy.

Reign

9 p.m., CW, debuts Oct. 17.

It’s about: Mary Queen of Scots meets MTV in this costume drama.

C

Washburn’s take: Aimed at the princess demo, “Reign” promises steamy romance and some old-fashioned magical wickedness in days of yore.

Sean Saves the World

9 p.m., NBC, debuts Oct. 3.

It’s about: Sean Hayes plays a dad whose wife left him (“She wasn’t into gay guys”). Years later, his 14-year-old daughter moves in with him, and he decides to become the perfect father.

D

Washburn’s take: A worn-out premise that fails to deliver anything new.

The Michael J. Fox Show

9:30 p.m., NBC, debuts Sept. 26.

It’s about: TV newscaster decides to ignore his Parkinson’s disease and return to work at a New York station.

A+

Washburn’s take: One of the surprise gems of the year. Michael J. Fox is at his best while at his worst. Fans of “30 Rock” can feel abandoned no longer.

FRIDAY

Dracula

10 p.m., NBC, debuts Oct. 25.

It’s about: Dracula gets a new lease on life as an American industrialist in 1890s London.

D

Washburn’s take: It’s got a gloomy, gaslight look but little else to sink your teeth into. Neither Drac nor his opponents are particularly engaging, and his personality is decidedly unappetizing.

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This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.

Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email local@charlotteobserver.com to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.

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