The bitch is back

“Melrose Place” Tuesday 9pm, CW History has a way of repeating itself, and the execs at the CW are sure hoping that’s the case this week as Heather Locklear once again joins the cast of a ratings-deficient show called “Melrose Place.” La Locklear saved “Melrose” once, driving ratings through the roof when she came on […]

Puppet masters

“So You Think You Can Dance” Tuesday-Wednesday 8pm, Fox This season is cursed. Between dancer injuries, a huge drop in ratings and a constantly shifting schedule, the first fall season of the venerable summer talent show has been disastrous. This week—more than two months into the show—America finally gets to vote for the first time, […]

Hide your hamsters

“V” Tuesday 8pm, ABC One of my earliest TV memories is watching that lady alien devour a hamster whole on the original version of “V” from the 1980s. (My parents also let me watch the original Alien movie when I was 6, and A Nightmare on Elm Street not long after that. Hello, sleep terrors!) […]

Nothing to fear

AMC Fear Fest Tuesday-Saturday, AMC The folks at AMC are taking the term “fear” a little broadly for this year’s installment of the annual horror-movie marathon. Now through Halloween you can catch supernaturally themed flicks on the channel non-stop. But many of the selections this year are more comedic than scary: Buffy the Vampire Slayer […]

Happy hunting

“Project Runway” Thursday 10pm, Lifetime We’re getting down to the nitty-gritty of the current season of everybody’s favorite fashion design competition, and due to its unique circumstances, things are a bit different this time. A lawsuit kept Season 6 off the air for nearly a year, but the three finalists’ collections did show as part […]

Return engagements

“Sherri” Tuesday 10pm, Lifetime I used to have an irrational dislike of Sherri Shepherd. I think it was because I just didn’t understand the decision to cast her on “The View,” especially since she came on at roughly the same time as Whoopi Goldberg, and I felt the two of them kind of cancelled each […]

Second chances

“90210” Tuesday 8pm, CW If you’re one of the legions who tuned in for last season’s premiere, and then promptly tuned out because it sucked, I urge you to give this Spellingvision redux another shot. Now in its second season, lessons have been learned, the cast has been tweaked and the show has become infinitely […]

They're just like us!

“Dancing with the Stars” Tuesday-Wednesday 8pm, ABC NEED MORE TV? Read Eric Rezsnyak’s fall television preview! Even juggernauts like “Dancing” need a little shaking up now and then. So look for four new dances in the mix—bolero, lambada, two-step and the Charleston (so topical!)—plus even more couples than usual (16 instead of 13). And what […]

The new TV season promises lots of laughs—some of them on purpose!

The new TV season promises lots of laughs—some of them on purpose!

It wasn’t that long ago that TV critics were all but pronouncing the death of the sitcom. Sure, certain comedies succeeded, even flourished, with cheesy laugh tracks and all. (“According to Jim” ran for eight seasons, people. How did we let that happen?) But the genre that once dominated the airwaves had increasingly fewer representatives […]

Music make you lose control

“Sons of Anarchy” Tuesday 10pm, FX “Anarchy” is loosely based on Hamlet, as it centers around the young second-in-command of a Northern California motorcycle gang who questions his allegiances—and his life—after his father dies and his ruthless new stepfather ascends to the crew’s leadership post. The show stars Brit Charlie Hunnam in the brooding prince […]

Are you hungry?

“Top Chef” Wednesday 10pm, Bravo After the decidedly less cutthroat “Masters” spin-off, original recipe “Top Chef” is back, and tasting more decadent than ever since it’s based in Las Vegas. Let’s hope the 17 contestants can live up to the foodie paradise, especially after the disappointing New York season. (I still can’t believe Hosea won…) […]

Say you want an evolution?

“The Human Family Tree” Sunday 9pm, National Geographic Channel No matter whether you believe in the process of evolution or that God created Adam and Eve, bottom line is we all come from the same place. Scientists generally agree that place is East Africa, “the cradle of humanity.” This special tries to put that theory […]

Watch and judge

“Octomom: The Unseen Footage” Wednesday 8pm, Fox Depending on your point of view, Nadya Suleman is either very ambitious, though possibly misguided; over her head and completely out of touch with reality; a terrible human being and mother; or a fame whore whose children should be taken away from her immediately. Suleman became a tabloid […]

Old school

“Lords of the Revolution” Tuesday-Friday 8pm, VH1 VH1 puts together some nifty documentary programs, and this new five-part series looks to be a decent addition. “Lords” focuses on counter-culture figures from the ’60s and ’70s whose pioneering work still has powerful repercussions today. Monday night’s episode focused on Muhammad Ali (you can catch the playback […]

Can we talk?

“So You Think You Can Dance” Wednesday-Thursday 8pm, Fox The frustrating fifth season comes to a close. I maintain that S5 had the most talented Top 20 ever—there was nary a bad dancer in the bunch (except poor, pathetic hip-hopper Tony). But somehow along the way we ended up with the least interesting Final 4 […]

The dating game

“More to Love” Tuesday 9pm, Fox From the creator of “The Bachelor” comes “The Fatchelor.” At least, that’s what my bitchy friends call this new dating show. In truth, “More to Love” raises some interesting cultural questions. While the “Bachelor” franchise has had 13 seasons (and five of its “Bachelorette” spin-off), the vast majority of […]

Back to school

“Big Brother 11” Tuesday 9pm, Thursday & Sunday 8pm, CBS The twist for “BB11” is that the 12 original housemates were divided into four groups based on traditional high school cliques: The Brains, The Athletes, The Populars, The Offbeats. Some of the sorting is specious—I don’t think Braden is popular with anyone, and for a […]

One more chance

“Dark Blue” Wednesday 10pm, TNT It’s always good to see Dylan McDermott again; he remains likable even after that disastrous male “Sex and the City” show “Big Shots” a couple seasons back. (It nearly destroyed poor Michael Vartan’s career.) Now the one-time star of “The Practice” and “fine hangin’ man” from Steel Magnolias is back […]

Super Tuesday

“10 Things I Hate About You” Tuesday 8pm, ABC Family Ten years ago, the film 10 Things I Hate About You introduced America to budding film stars Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles. Now the teen-friendly retelling of Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew is back with a serialized take in this new show on ABC Family. […]

The big bang

“Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular” Saturday 9pm, NBC In case you’re too lazy to go to the backyard to watch one of the several area Independence Day fireworks displays, NBC is bringing the high-altitude explosions right into your living room. Musical guests Jewel, Rob Thomas and the cast of Broadway’s revival of West Side […]

Big fun

“America’s Got Talent” Tuesday-Wednesday 9pm, NBC I’m not convinced that title is accurate. Now in its fourth season, the show would like you to believe it can produce a national sensation, like its across-the-pond sibling did with Susan Boyle. The best we’re likely to get is the second coming of Boy Shakira. All manner of […]

The British are coming

“Hawthorne” Tuesday 10pm, TNT Between “Saving Grace,” “The Closer,” and now this new show, TNT has carved out a niche for strong female-led dramas starring washed-up movie stars. “Hawthorne” follows Jada Pinkett-Smith as Christina Hawthorne, a tough but vulnerable head nurse in a chaotic hospital. She’s forced to navigate stifling bureaucracy and incompetent doctors, and […]

Please Hammer, don't hurt 'em

“Top Chef Masters” Wednesday 10pm, Bravo The chefs that act as guest judges on food competition “Top Chef” are among the bitchiest critics I’ve ever seen. Frequently, the contestants on the show will comment that they wish the culinary master pissing in their corn flakes had to work under their intense conditions. Those wishes have […]

Wonder queers

“The Beautiful People” Tuesday 10pm, Logo The makers of this show describe it as “The Wonder Years” meets “Absolutely Fabulous.” “Beautiful People” is based on the memoirs of Simon Doonan, now the creative director of stylish department store Barney’s, and occasional talking head on VH1’s pop-culture shows. The series follows Doonan’s 13-year-old self as he […]

Don't stop believin'

“Glee” Tuesday 9pm, Fox Please, God, let this be as good as it looks. “Glee” is a new musical comedy about a well-meaning high school teacher (dreamy Matthew Morrison, Broadway’s Hairspray) who takes over his school’s glee club in an attempt to return it to its former glory. Naturally the club is stocked full of […]

You must remember this

“The Alzheimer’s Project” Tuesday 9pm, HBO Tonight sees the debut of the final part in this series, but you can catch all four segments on replay throughout the month on HBO and its various subsidiary channels. These documentaries explore Alzheimer’s from several different perspectives: what it’s like to actually have the disease, the changing medical […]