Summer’s coming up pretty soon, and sure, there are some really awesome movies and trips to the beach in store as well. But as awesome as all those experiences will be, they all require expendable cash. Unfortunately, that’s not always available. Luckily, there’s always TV, which merely requires you to press a button. It’s so easy! Here are some of the highlights (note: all times are in Eastern time, because that’s where some of our authors live).
ABC, premiering 5/24, Mondays at 8 p.m.
This season stars Ali Fedotowsky, a contestant from “The Bachelor’s” last season, who quit her quest for Jake Pavelka’s heart in order to keep her job at Google. So somehow, going on “The Bachelorette” will be a good career move. Oh, well. This move is just about as logical as the show itself, which pits 25 guys against each other in the quest for Ali’s heart. This show promises romance, travel and suspense as to who will end up engaged by the season’s end. Plus, there will be a glimpse of pre-erupted-volcano Iceland, which will probably be the most exciting thing after all.
FOX, premiering 5/27, and airing on Wednesdays/ Thursdays, though schedules can be variable
The seventh season of this dance show is going through a lot of changes. Instead of having a top 20 comprised of 10 couples, there will be a top 12 dancing with 12 “all-star” contestants from previous seasons. Although this will eliminate the possibility of amazing pairs, it means only one of your favorites will be voted out every week. Sounds like quite a promising option, even for those who can’t move to a beat!
NBC, premiering 6/7, Mondays at 10 p.m.
This is a new mystery drama about people who have to “solve the puzzles of their lives.” Yes, that phrase was in the press release. I don’t actually know what it’s about, but that line alone was enough to sell me. Plus, it stars Alan Ruck, better known as Cameron from “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.” But hopefully in this new show, he won’t spend most of his time freaking out about his dad’s car…
HBO, premiering 6/13, Sundays
After capitalizing on the vampire phenomenon two years ago, “True Blood” is returning to HBO this summer for more sexy, violent vampire drama. The series chronicles Sookie Stackhouse as she dates a “reformed” vampire who tries his hardest to resist feeding on humans. By herself, she isn’t completely powerless, as she is able to resist many of the vampires’ powers and read others’ minds. When the new season returns, we are guaranteed to learn just what happened to Sookie, who mysteriously disappeared just as her vampire boyfriend Bill Compton was proposing to her.
‘The Real L Word’
Showtime, premiering 6/20, Sundays
After successfully running the series “The L Word”—a show about a group of lesbian, bisexual and transgender people and their friends in Los Angeles—Showtime is returning with “The Real L Word.” This reality show will follow a group of lesbians in LA as they live their lives. Without a doubt, the reality show will be just as dramatic and engrossing as its fictional counterpart.
HBO, premiering 6/27, Sundays
“Entourage’s” seventh season opens with Vince back from Rome, now shooting an apocalyptic movie, hopefully one that’s more “The Day After Tomorrow” and less “2012” (or maybe that’s just us?). Anyway, fans will get to deal with Eric and Sloan’s engagement, as well as lots of goodness from Drama and Turtle. Also, Lloyd’s now an agent, which is pretty much reason enough to watch the show, right? Hopefully! Tune in on June 27 to see.
Syfy, premiering 7/9, Fridays at 10 p.m.
This new show from Syfy brings an FBI agent (an attractive female, of course) to a small Maine town to solve a murder. Of course, that plot is way too simplistic, so this FBI agent learns that this town is a haven for people with supernatural abilities. Sounds interesting. I’m wondering if it will be more about the residents or the agent. I’m hoping it’s the residents, because I lost a lot of supernatural friends when “Heroes” decided to suck. Also, I met the actress playing the FBI agent a couple of summers ago (Emily Rose of “Jericho” and “John From Cincinatti”), and she was just mean.
AMC, premiering 7/25, Sundays at 10 p.m.
The end of “Mad Men’s” third season brought about a total shake-up that will completely destroy the status quo: the creation of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, a new advertising agency that will employ Pete, Peggy, Joan and Harry. Don and Betty started preparing for a divorce, and many other awesome things happened. The third season’s finale alone was enough to get me to want to watch season four of “Mad Men,” and the fact that it is such a good show otherwise just makes this so much better.
FX, will air late summer, details TBA
Pete and his friends have problems. One friend’s wife leaves him, and the wives who stay are withholding sex; they can’t get jobs, and even the one with a great job gets no respect; and their kids drive them nuts. For these early-30s lost boys, the last refuge from the real world is their fantasy football league. Fantasy fans will immediately identify with the league’s hyper-aggression, backstabbing and genuine line-up paranoia (although maybe not with kidnapping a child guru for draft advice or trying to get a good-luck testicular exam from another league member’s doctor girlfriend), but fantasy football is only the backdrop for this delightfully twisted little comedy. After all, dressing up your stoner brother as an annoying Tickle-Me-Elmo-esque doll with a knife to scare your child into never wanting to play with it again (SPOILER ALERT: it goes horribly, criminally wrong) is comedy we can all appreciate.
‘The Big C’
Showtime, premiering 8/16, Mondays at 10:30 p.m.
This show is billed as a dark comedy, and it stars Laura Linney. From that, it seems pretty promising. And then you find out why it’s a dark comedy—Laura Linney stars as a wife, mother and teacher who, oh yeah, also has terminal cancer. That seems…really funny? I’m interested at least to see how tactful this show is, or if it is just really disturbing. I cannot decide which would excite me more.