As I said on Friday, this is the first of two TV Weeklys you'll see this week. So, this is a special bonus edition of
Many of you will know that we are two months away from finding out if some of our favorite shows on the five major networks (CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX, and The CW) will be coming back in the fall. This year, though, there are dozens of shows that are either on the bubble, likely to be cancelled, or about to be cancelled. Most of the new shows this year have been mundane and mediocre at best but there are some bright spots that nobody is watching and they should.
That's what this post is about, this is about 10 shows that you should definitely check out because if you don't, they will get cancelled and will never be seen again. These are 10 shows that I've really been getting into and are on the brink of cancellation and deserve to be watched. So, let's jump right into it.
#10: MAD LOVE Mondays 8:30/7:30c on CBS
Four thirtysomething New Yorkers – Kate (Sarah Chalke), Connie (Judy Greer), Larry (Tyler Labine) and Ben (Jason Biggs) –are searching for love in the city. When Kate and Ben meet and fall for each other, their friends remain cynical about the relationship.
If you love How I Met Your Mother (as much as I do), Mad Love is a perfect lead-out for that show. The four main characters are very likeable and the actors do a great job in their roles especially Jason Biggs, who hasn't really done anything great since the American Pie trilogy (and yes, I like the first three films). Mad Love is not a perfect sitcom, it's not on the same creative level as Community or Modern Family, but Mad Love is a fun show with likeable characters and good laughs.
#9: MR. SUNSHINE Wednesdays 9:30/8:30c on ABC
Ben Donovan (Matthew Perry) is the operations manager for the Sunshine Center, a second-tier arena in San Diego, who has to deal with the unusual demands of his job and his unpredictable boss (Allison Janney).
Mr. Sunshine is a really fun show. There are a lot of really great jokes, the cast does a great job including Perry, and to be honest, I like it just a tiny bit better than Cougar Town. Mr. Sunshine, while it has the honor of a Modern Family lead-in, keeps getting the crap beat out of it by American Idol and it doesn't help that new episodes air with a Modern Family repeat as its' lead-in. You should definitely check this show out, it starts off okay but every other episode gets slightly better. Of the four ABC comedies, it's below Modern Family and The Middle and above Better With You.
#8: LAW & ORDER: LOS ANGELES Mondays 10pm/9c on NBC (returning April 11th)
From Dick Wolf, comes a foray into the glitz, glamour and guilt of Los Angeles. From the tony Beverly Hills to the seedy side of Hollywood, LAPD's elite Robbery Homicide Division is on the case. Fusing classic ripped-from-the-headlines storytelling with the backdrop of LA, the series delves into the high-profile crimes of the West Coast.
I was very skeptical about this when they first announced because it meant that the original Law & Order would be cancelled after 20 years. But then, as the summer went on and they were bringing up who would be in the cast, I was interested. Then, the series premiered and it was a great show. And then, they announced they were retooling it.
Keep in mind, I'm writing this up before the new revamp debuts. The first 8 episodes of the series were actually made really well. The acting was great, it was nice to see Terrence Howard, Alfred Molina, and Regina Hall in this type of series, and I couldn't believe they were going to retool it.
As of right now, I'm putting this on the list but if the new retooled version fails to entertain me like what the first 8 episodes did, then I will not even care if it gets cancelled.
#7: BOB'S BURGERS Sundays 8:30/7:30c on FOX
The show centers on a family that runs a hamburger restaurant. Creator Loren Bouchard stated Bob's Burgers came out because of Fox's animation brand centers mostly on family, but that he also wanted to dabble in workplace comedy.
Here's another show I was very skeptical on and had no intention to watch it. I didn't like that the comedy that I saw in the previews for the show, I thought the idea of them having two guys doing the voice of two of the female characters was weird, and I didn't think the show's premise was strong.
And then, I watched the first episode and really enjoyed it. However, the second and third episodes almost made me stop watching because they were mediocre. And then, every episode that followed were really entertaining and funny.
I've never see a show that had me, lost me, and had me again before. I would really love to see another season of this but unfortunately, I see this going down the same path as another funny show I loved, Sit Down, Shut Up, and last only one season.
The show's highlights are H. Jon Benjamin as Bob and Kristen Schaal as his daughter, Louise. All of their lines are hilarious and they help the show provide a lot of great moments.
Bob's Burgers, while not starting off as one at first, is a perfect addition to FOX's Sunday night animaton block and I would love to see them bring it back for another year... or if FOX won't do it, have Adult Swim pick it up for another year.
#6: THE CHICAGO CODE Mondays 9/8c on FOX
The series follows officers of the Chicago Police Department as they fight crime on the streets and try to expose political corruption within the city. Veteran Chicago Police Detective Jarek Wysocki (Jason Clarke) leads the special unit against fighting the corruption. Wysocki was assigned to head the special unit by his boss the newly appointed first-female Chicago Police Superintendent and his one time partner, Teresa Colvin (Jennifer Beals). Also on the unit is Caleb Evers (Matt Lauria), a young detective and Wysocki's latest partner. During their investigations the detectives often encounter police officers Vonda Wysocki (Jarek's niece) (Devin Kelley) and Vonda's partner Isaac Joiner (Todd Williams). Undercover officer Liam Hennessey (Billy Lush) works the streets as he gets information on the Irish mob and their connection to the corruption. Believed source of the corruption is Alderman Ronin Gibbons (Delroy Lindo), a powerful and influential politician in Chicago.
This series has a lot of greatness going towards it and it's possibly my favorite new TV show this year (that or Boardwalk Empire). Jennifer Beals does a great job playing the head of the police department, Delroy Lindo is also really good as Ronin Gibbons, and Jason Clarke does a great job as Jarek. Each episode does a great job with the action sequences and giving each of the characters some depth to them all. Also, this series has the best theme song I've heard since Community and it's by Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins:
The Chicago Code is created by Shawn Ryan (who also created The Shield and The Unit), and I read that this was a passion project for him and I think that's what makes the show works. Ryan's expertise on the city and every detail that gets put into each episode, I believe, adds to the drama going on between the characters and the stories they have to go through.
The unfortunate thing is that I keep hearing that FOX is going to have to choose between cancelling this or Fringe next season, which really pisses me off. They are doing that because they just HAVE to have 3 hours of The X Factor next year. I just hope FOX has the smarts to cut down X Factor to 2 hours and give both shows a renewal because they both deserve it.
If all else fails, The Chicago Code should go over to FX if FOX doesn't pick it up. I mean, look at what happened with Southland, that started on NBC for a season and then went over to TNT and became more successful. So, who knows?
#5: LIGHTS OUT Tuesdays 10pm/9c on FX
An aging former Irish-American heavyweight boxing champion Patrick "Lights" Leary (Holt McCallany) tries to find his identity after retiring from the sport he loved so much. After years of wear and tear in the ring, he is diagnosed with pugilistic dementia, a neurological disorder that affects boxers who suffered too many blows to the head which gradually causes memory loss and constant headaches. Now, Lights is struggling to support his wife and three daughters, especially when his dwindling finances have him on shaky ground. He must decide whether to accept the brutal and intimidating job of a debt collector or return to the ring for a comeback to become the champ once again.
This is the only cable show I have on the list. Throughout its' history, FX has usually given its' original shows a chance to succeed by renewing it for another season. The only exception where this didn't go well was with Terriers, but that was because the marketing campaign was fucked up.
I want to see FX give Lights Out another season because I believe that if this show gets another season, that season will be great. Not to say that this series is great now because it is. McCallany does a great job as Lights and the rest of the cast does a really great job. This show is also the only original show I watch on Tuesdays because everything else doesn't peak my interest.
Lights Out is currently the lowest rated of the three FX shows that are airing right now but FX has been known for giving shows a chance to find an audience by giving it at least one more season and hopefully, they will do the same for Lights Out. But, you people out there have got to watch it in order to make that happen. It's a really great series. And while The Chicago Code is my favorite new TV series this year, Lights Out is my favorite new TV series that's on the brink of cancellation.
#4: PARKS & RECREATION Thursdays 9:30/8:30c on NBC
Currently in its' third season, the series follows Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler), the Deputy Director of the Parks and Recreation department in the fictional town of Pawnee, Indiana. Knope takes on a project with a nurse named Ann Perkins (Rashida Jones) to turn an abandoned construction pit into a park, while trying to navigate her way through the politics of local government.
Now, I think NBC is smart enough to not cancel this series because NBC's had a long history of keeping the critically acclaimed but low rated series on the air. A history that goes all the way back to Hill Street Blues & Cheers, both of which later became hit series and classic series. But, you never know.
Personally, Parks & Recreation is at its' best right now. The cast has never been better and the addition of Rob Lowe & Adam Scott to the series has been perfect and both of them have adjusted well to the series. The comedy is also funnier that it's ever been and it should have really good numbers being paired after The Office. But, of course, because of fucking American Idol, it's struggling. People, you've got to watch Parks & Recreation and also another NBC series that I will get to shortly.
#3: CHUCK Mondays 8pm/7c on NBC
Currently in its' fourth season, The series is about an "average computer-whiz-next-door" who receives an encoded e-mail from an old college friend now working in the CIA; the message embeds the only remaining copy of the world's greatest spy secrets into Chuck's (Zachary Levi) brain.
I've noticed a pattern with critically acclaimed shows like Seinfeld, The Simpsons, and The Office that the fourth season of a TV show is usually considered the best season of the show. And Chuck is on that same path too. I thought the first half of the season with the Volkoff storyline and having Linda Hamilton come in as Chuck's mom was well done. I haven't seen the last few episodes yet though.
But, we've been down this road a number of times. It seems like Chuck is always on the bubble or on the brink of cancellation and you know what, we are at that point again. I think Chuck is currently in its' strongest season, and I think it should continue into next season. The writing is at its' strongest, they do a great job with its' guest stars, and the characters are still fun to watch after all these years.
#2: COMMUNITY Thursdays 8pm/7c on NBC
Now in its' second season, Community centers on Jeff Winger (Joel McHale), a disbarred lawyer going to school for the first time after his bachelor's degree is revealed as fabricated. The series focuses on the experiences of Jeff and the study group he accidentally forms while pursuing Britta Perry (Gillian Jacobs), a student trying to get her life back on track. The other members of Jeff's study group include Pierce Hawthorne (Chevy Chase), a millionaire on a late in life voyage of self discovery; Annie Edison (Alison Brie), a young straight-laced student; Troy Barnes (Donald Glover), a former high school star quarterback; Shirley Bennett (Yvette Nicole Brown), a single mother going to school to jumpstart her brownie business; and Abed Nadir (Danny Pudi), a pop-culture obsessed film student. Former Spanish teacher, now student Señor Ben Chang (Ken Jeong) desperately tries to become a part of the study group.
Here's a show that keeps getting fucked over. Not only does this show have to go up against CBS' The Big Bang Theory (another geek-oriented show I love), but it has to go up against FOX's American Idol and ABC's Wipeout. Community has the worst timeslot right now.
And it doesn't deserve to suffer because this show is the best comedy on TV right now. Everything about this series works, the comedy is well done, the cast does a fantastic job, this is one of the greatest shows in TV history.
That's it, man. That's all I can say that hasn't been said already. I can also say, watch Community because it's the best comedy on TV right now and it definitely deserves a much better audience than it has.
And finally, the #1 show that you need to be watching is...
AMERICA'S NEXT TOP MODEL
I believe that...
No, No, NO! I'm just fucking with you.
The #1 show that you need to be watching is, of course,
FRINGE Fridays 9/8c on FOX
In its' third season, The series follows a Federal Bureau of Investigation "Fringe Division" team based in Boston, Massachusetts under the supervision of Homeland Security. The team uses unorthodox "fringe" science and FBI investigative techniques to investigate a series of unexplained, often ghastly occurrences, which are related to mysteries surrounding a parallel universe.
This is the best show on TV right now, hands down. And yet, it has the worst timeslot ever. The cast is terrific, the acting is top-notch, the special effects are incredible, why is this show not popular?
If you haven't watched Fringe, WATCH IT, DAMN YOU! Because it's on the brink of getting cancelled, it's not getting the numbers it deserves and it should be renewed for another year.
Need more proof, Entertainment Weekly just did a full story on why Fringe should be saved and here it is.
There you go, Fringe is the #1 show you need to be watching right now.
So, there you go, my picks for the 10 show that you need to be watching. Come back on Friday for a new edition of The TV Weekly.