After reviewing this year's fall lineup, I've determined that the most competitive night of television is Monday. There are so many great shows to watch, use my guide to help you make your personal "watch" list.
8pm kicks off with Dancing with the Stars Season 15 on ABC, an all stars edition. This was something I was excited about as soon as I heard rumors about it from Mario Lopez (a previous contestant), who let the cat out of the bag a bit prematurely, but ultimately was right. Once the cast was chosen, I was even more excited because this cast features some of my absolute favorites! (Sept. 24)
Kirstie Alley, 2nd place from Season 12, will be partnered with her previous partner, Maksim Chmerkovskiy.
Pamela Anderson, 6th place from Season 10, was previously partnered with Damian Whitewood, and will be partnered this time around by Tristan MacManus.
Voted into the competition by the fans, Sabrina Bryan, 7th place from Season 5, was previously partnered with Mark Ballas, and will be partnered this time around by Louis Van Amstel.
Helio Castroneves, the winner of Season 5, was previously partnered with Julianne Hough, and will be partnered this time around with Chelsie Hightower.
Joey Fatone, 2nd place from Season 4, will be partnered with his previous partner, Kym Johnson.
Shawn Johnson, the winner of Season 8, was partnered with Mark Ballas, and will be partnered this time around with Derek Hough.
Drew Lachey, the winner of Season 2, was partnered with Cheryl Burke, and will be partnered this time around with Anna Trebunskaya.
Giles Marini, 2nd place from Season 8, was partnered with Cheryl Burke, and will be partnered this time around with Peta Murgatroyd.
Kelly Monaco, the winner of Season 1, was partnered with Alec Mazo, and will be partnered this time around by Val Chmerkovskiy.
Apolo Anton Ohno, the winner of Season 4, was partnered with Julianne Hough, and will be partnered this time around by Karina Smirnoff.
Bristol Palin, 3rd place from Season 11, will be partnered with her previous partner, Mark Ballas.
Melissa Rycroft, 3rd place from Season 8, will be partnered with her previous partner, Tony Dovolani.
Emmitt Smith, the winner of Season 3, will be partnered with his previous partner, Cheryl Burke.
I'm not revealing who my money is on.......
Also at 8pm
90210 on the CW begins season five where season four left off with lots of questions, lives in peril, and changes galore. The season opener resolves some of that, but as is always the case, there will be some season long story lines. Who will ultimately end up with who? Will Dixon live and get back to Adrianna? Who is Liam meant to be with? Annie or Silver? Will Naomi and Max be together forever? Rumor has it Navid will turn into a bad boy! Those are my favorite kind. Look for Ivy's storyline to come to a conclusion. (Oct. 8)
Finally, The Voice returns for Season 3 on NBC. All four judges, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton, Cee Lo Green, and Christina Aguilera return. This time around they are joined by Mary J. Blige, Billie Joe Armstrong, Rob Thomas, and Michael Buble as advisors. (Sept. 10)
Not into reality shows or teen angst? Try the CBS comedy Partners debuting Sept. 24th at 8:30. The comedy, by same duo that created Will & Grace, are back with a similar recipe. This one is about two male best friends, one gay, Louis (Michael Urie-- Mark from Ugly Betty) and one straight, Joe (David Krumholtz). Both have significant others, played by, Brandon Routh (the most recent Superman movie) and Sophia Bush (One Tree Hill). Check out a preview HERE!
The Mob Doctor on FOX is an edge of your seat thriller based on the 2004 biography Il Dottore (The Doctor) about a surgeon with ties to the mob. She walks the line between corruption and redemption; sounds dangerous! Check out a preview and cast list HERE! (Sept. 17)
My favorite new comedy from last year, 2 Broke Girls on CBS returns for Season 2. Caroline and Max continue their quest to launch their own cupcake business. We meet Caroline's dad, and the season will end with a wedding. Oh my! (Sept. 24)
For sentimental reasons, I wanted to mention that Season 6 of Gossip Girl will be the final season. I am hoping that this season will be a return to the writing and storylines of Season 1. The show has lost focus in the past couple of year and has been a hot mess ever since. Serena, I know you hear me and love me, xoxo, Miss V. (Oct. 8)
And now for something really scary, The Revolution on NBC is about a world where all forms of power have been snuffed out from the planet. The show is about family, and there is a large element of mystery as well, like who turned out all the lights and are they ever coming back on? I watched the first episode online; I'm intrigued. You can watch the pilot and learn more about the show HERE! (Sept. 17)
On Hawaii Five-O on CBS, season three will explore the pasts of McGarrett and Danny. Christine Lahti joins the cast this year as McGarrett's mom who will give insight into her son's childhood and young adulthood. She'll reveal why she actually left her family. We'll learn about Danny's days as a cop in New Jersey and how much he loved his now ex wife Rachel. (Sept. 24)
At 8pm don't forget to watch your Dancing with the Stars Results Show on ABC, and more action on The Voice on NBC.
Also at 8pm, is the second season of last year's sweetest newcomer dramedy Hart of Dixie. This year is all about Rachel Bilson's, Dr. Zoe Hart deciding who she wants to be with: the vulnerable, hot, bad boy Wade or smart, pretty boy, lawyer George (also Lemon's ex who he basically left at the altar). I personally am a Zoe and Wade fan, but I know a lot of people who would disagree with me. Zoe is going to make a choice, I just hope it's not the famous, or rather infamous, "I choose me". (Oct. 2)
At 9:30pm on FOX The Mindy Project is a 30 year old doctor's look at her life and it's successes and failures. Her career is successful, her personal life, total and utter failure. I was able to watch the first episode of the show on FOX; it's hilarious, and I am hoping that the subsequent episodes will follow suit. I also love all the health insurance jokes; they're very now. Watch the first episode HERE! (Sept. 25)
The 10pm hour brings us one exciting new drama and a returning underdog.
Vegas on CBS is based on a true story and has an amazingly talented cast. Dennis Quaid in his first lead role in a TV series plays a Las Vegas Sheriff from the 60s named Ralph Lamb who takes on Chicago gangster Vincent Savino played by Michael Chiklis following the murder of a casino worker. Carrie Anne Moss plays an ambitious Assistant District Attorney who helps Lamb to keep order in town. Rounding out the cast are Lamb's two deputies, his son, and his brother. (Sept. 25)
One of the happiest moments of last TV season was knowing that Parenthood on NBC would be back for a 4th season. The eloquently written and well acted show never fails to impress with its realistic take on the world and family dynamics. Jasmine and Crosby are married now, so we get to see what they're like as a married couple. Haddie is going off to college for real. Ray Romano is going to be brought on as a guest star who potentially could throw and wrench in Sara and Mark's relationship, especially since they're engaged now. Julia and Joel are adjusting to life with their newly adopted child Victor now in the house. Amber is going to work at the Luncheonette. Adam and Kristina are going to face a crisis of epic proportions. (Sept. 11)
Following Melanie Amaro's crowning as the first X Factor Champion, FOX decided that the Simon Cowell series needed to clean house and clean house it did. Out were the host who I don't even remember anymore, coach/ judge Nicole Scherzinger, and coach/ judge Paula Abdul. As of now, the show still doesn't have a host but brought Britney Spears and Demi Lovato on to help coach and judge; I'm looking forward to seeing how these new judges work together. (Sept. 12)
For all those mourning the loss of Smallville, never fear, Arrow is here! If we're comparing it to Smallville, Arrow is more sophisticated, a little more dark, some people even draw comparisons to Batman. Arrow is "billionaire playboy" Oliver Queen, played by Stephen Arnell, and he fights for truth and justice. His sidekick is Laurel Lance, a.k.a. Black Canary, played by Katie Cassidy. Their outfits are also a little more modern which also means they're a little more sexy, something tells me they have a viewership waiting to tune in already. (Oct. 10)
At 9pm..... two cop shows are up against each other and I am a fan of both. I always wonder why the networks do this to each other, obviously none of the major networks are going away.
On CBS, Jeanne Tripplehorn joins the cast of Criminal Minds as linguistics expert Alex Blake who initially may be seen as a threat because she is joining such a tight knit group. Prentiss (Paget Brewster) will be gone but not forgotten, the show says they'll name drop her as much as possible and the possibility of her returning is always open. Reid will have a significant other this season. Hotch's new relationship will soon become long distance as is Alex's, so they'll have something in common. Garcia and Kevin's relationship will continue to be rocky. There is also going to be a season long case and the unsub will be known as the "replicator" because he replicates the crimes of other criminals. (Sept. 26)
Law & Order: SVU on NBC returns after a shocking season finale picking up right where is left off with Captain Cragen waking up in bed next to a dead hooker. Besides Cragen being in a real pickle, the effects will also impact Benson (Mariska Hargitay) who just lost her partner of 12 years the year before. Now she must deal with the fall out of all this and whether or not her Captain has been lying to her. It turns out that he was hiding some skeletons in his closet from the squad. Paget Brewster joins as a DA investigator who is assigned to look into the Captain's past. (Sept. 26)
Finally, the 10pm hour brings two new dramas, one being labeled as the best new drama on TV in some time now.
Of all the new dramas coming on this fall, the one I have been most excited about is Nashville on ABC. Created and written by Callie Khouri (an Oscar winner for writing the script for Thelma & Louise), the show takes one of the most realistic looks at the music business yet. Connie Britton, in her first major role since Friday Night Lights (she co-starred in last years American Horror Story), plays Faith Hill-like singer Rayna James. Rayna is dealing with her career being jeopardized as the result of a hot little newcomer to the scene, Juliette Barnes, played by Hayden Panettiere. With a song book by producer T-Bone Burnett (incidentally, he is Khouri's husband), I don't think I'll be leaving Nashville any time soon. Watch a great preview HERE! (Oct. 10)
Lady Gaga's boyfriend Taylor Kinney stars in the new NBC drama Chicago Fire as a brash firefighter who butts heads with his comrades. Don't watch it because of who Taylor Kinney is though, rather, watch because the show is executive produced by Dick Wolf (he hardly ever misses when it comes to good dramas) and it takes a look at the lives of firefighters and paramedics and the courageous risks that they take every single day. Although there hasn't been much buzz when it comes to Chicago Fire, the cast boasts some seasoned veterans. Read about the show HERE and take a look at the cast! (Oct 10)
Don't forget, X Factor results at 8pm on FOX and .....
the fourth season of The Vampire Diaries begins. I first have to comment on how much I disliked the season finale. The build up to the final episode of season three was so good, and yet the finale was so disappointing. I hated the fact that they turned Elena into a vampire. I think that was taking the easy way out. I hate that she had to relive what happened to her only years before, and that this time Matt was the one at risk because the audience understands the sentimental attachment that she has to him. I didn't like how they played Stefan and Damon against one another for almost the whole season. I didn't like the whole Tyler/ Klaus and I don't know who is who storyline. All that being said, I am invested in these characters and I care about what happens to them. I just hope that season four pleases more than season three did. (Oct. 11)
I'm hearing lots of good things about ABC's Last Resort costarring Andre Braugher (a fave of mine from way back, I'm talking, Homicide: Life on the Street. His turn last year on Law & Order: SVU was amazing) and Scott Speedman (the famous "Ben" on Felicity). Braugher plays a submarine captain and Speedman is his XO. They ignore an odd order to nuke Pakistan, and then end up going rogue as a result. They then start their own nation and try to figure out how to clear their name and get home. (Sept. 27)
9pm is a three horse race with last season's number one new drama, Person of Interest on CBS, Glee on FOX, and newcomer Beauty and the Beast on the CW.
Finch was kidnapped at the close of last season on Person of Interest, Reese needs to oversee everything for the time being. Will Finch be found? Will Reese keep up with his duties? (Sept. 27)
I just watched the season three finale of Glee. It was way too sad, and the endings were too cliche: Finn and Rachel breaking up, Finn going into the army, several students moving to the "Big" city, everyone trying to "find" themselves. This season is supposedly about new beginnings. Rachel, Kurt, and Santana are living together in New York City. Sarah Jessica Parker and Kate Hudson join the cast in the NYC storyline. Back in Ohio, Brittany, Artie, Blaine, Sam, and Tina try to figure out who is going to be the next Rachel. Who will stay together? Who will break up?....... with so many long distance relationships.What will come of Finn, Puck, Mercedes, Quinn, and Mike? I've heard nothing about their story lines. Then there's the teachers: Sue, Will, and Emma; will their new students ever be able to replace those that they lost? As far as music, there's another Britney Spears episode coming up, and lots of songs from the summer that they will tackle in one way or another. (Sept. 13)
Beauty and the Beast on the CW puts a modern day spin on a classic fairytale. I remember watching the TV version from the 80s, and I am hoping that this will be a vast improvement over that. The basis of the show is a detective named Cat is consumed by her tragic past, her mom was murdered, and had something or someone not come along and save her, she would be dead too. She wants to discover what or who exactly saved her life. While working a case, she finds the man who saved her life, he also has a secret in that he's been watching over her for all these years. He begins helping her with her cases and she soon comes to trust him like she's never trusted any other man. (Oct. 11)
I am eager to check out the new procedural drama, Elementary. I am surprised to know that a network had not picked up or developed a Holmes and Watson detective series before now. This one costars British actor Jonny Lee Miller as Holmes and Lucy Liu as Joan Watson. As a result of being a modern day take, Elementary tackles Holmes' drug use, and brings a different dimension since Watson is a woman. I loved Lucy Liu's work on Southland so I am actually excited to see what she brings to this character. Many are already predicting that it will be a ratings hit. (Sept. 27)
At the end of last season, CSI: NY on CBS didn't know whether or not they would be back to live another season, but it was their longer running, higher rated sister CSI: Miami that got the ax instead. In the season finale, Mac was shot, and this season we'll see the effects of that. He underwent a lot of trauma, and to just go back on the job can be overwhelming. (Sept. 28)
Made in Jersey on CBS is about a young street smart woman who works as a lawyer. She's out to prove to her colleagues that just because she doesn't have an Ivy league education doesn't mean she lacks insight. Supporting her is her large Italian family who gives her the confidence and passion she needs to compete with her new environment. (Sept. 28)
Returning for a third season Blue Bloods on CBS promises to deliver on more Reagan clan adventures. Among them, Frank will decide whether or not to stay on as NYPD Commissioner. (Sept. 28)
Saturday is going to be a great day to catch up on series that you've missed or watch some news magazines or crime shows.
The Simpsons on FOX returns for season 24 and so do some of Bart's ex girlfriends. He even makes a trip to New York City to see one of them. Also coming up, Marge wants to have another baby, Justin Bieber is at Bart's talent show, another Treehouse of Horror, more Fat Tony hi-jinx, and Edward Norton as a minister. (Sept. 30)
At 9pm........ it's the Good Wife on CBS versus Revenge on ABC at a new night and time. Both are arguably nighttime soap operas of sorts and both star with a woman in the main role.
The Good Wife enters its fourth season with the firm having some financial issues. I guess everyone is affected by this economy if we're being realistic. Kalinda's ex returns and proves to be dangerous. A lot of backstory is going to be developed. Will Alicia and Kalinda patch up their friendship? How much will Alicia and the kids be in Peter's campaign. (Sept. 30)
Revenge was my favorite new drama last year and left us with so many questions and loose ends last season. It was explosive, and I do mean literally. We'll learn who lived or died of the following ladies: Victoria, Charlotte, and Lydia. Is "Amanda" really having Jack's child, or does this baby belong to someone else? Emily gets a new love interest this season, someone from her past resurfaces. Nolan gets a lady "friend" in his life. Daniel and Ashley use each other, and Daniel really starts to look like a Grayson through and through. Jennifer Jason Leigh joins the cast as Emily, I mean Amanda's, mother. Emily found out that she was alive at the end of last season, and now she has to find her. Season one was absolutely addictive and I am hoping this season will follow suit. If you haven't seen Revenge now, there's a great feature on the website that will get you caught up on everything you need to know. (Sept. 30)
ABC premieres a new series called 666 Park Avenue, the premise of the show is interesting. Terry O'Quinn and Vanessa Williams star as owners of an apartment building where tenants can move in but cannot move out. The two new managers of the building try to figure out why certain tenants don't last a long time. (Sept. 30)