Fall 2012 TV Preview: CBS Premiere Schedule and Trailers
If you take a quick glance below at the list of new shows and the list of returning shows to CBS this fall, you will notice that one is much larger than the other. There's a reason for that: if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
CBS has been running with its heavy lineup of multi-camera sitcoms and crime procedurals for years now, and the system seems to be working quite nicely for the network, which is never wanting in viewers. Never mind that most crime procedurals are pretty much the same. Never mind that half of them are spin-offs of other crime procedurals, making them even more similar. They bring in viewers, and that's what counts.
Of course there are a few non-procedural dramas on the network as well, but two of CBS's four new shows are procedurals, so get ready for more of the same-but-slightly-different.
"Partners" - Monday, Sept. 24 at 8:30PM
CBS begins a new buddy comedy with "Partners," a story about two friends, Joe and Louis, whose long friendship is tested when the two of them begin serious relationships. The show is from the creators of "Will and Grace," so expect a similar vibe.
"Vegas" - Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 10PM
A period drama on CBS? Believe it: "Vegas" is a 1960's drama coming to the network this fall. The show stars Michael Chiklis as a mob boss in Las Vegas, and Dennis Quaid as the city's sheriff. As a bonus to history buffs and crime geeks, the show is based on a true story.
"Elementary" - Thursday, Sept. 27 at 10PM
No, it's not a show about kids starting first grade. The title of this new hour-long refers to the famous phrase "Elementary, my dear Watson," which Sherlock Holmes never actually said, by the way. The show stars Jonny Lee Miller as Holmes and, as part of the show's modern twist, Lucy Liu as Watson.
The show is here at a time when "Sherlock," another modern take on the literary legend, as been running on the BBC. Unfortunately for "Elementary," "Sherlock" is nothing short of brilliant, and CBS's offering will have to be pretty impressive to measure up.
"Made in Jersey" - Friday, Sept. 28 at 9PM
This one just barely got in there before "Jersey Shore" got canceled and any and all interest in Italian New Jersey families disappears. The show centers on a street smart female lawyer from New Jersey who joins an upscale law firm in New York City, where she struggles to fit in but dazzles with her unorthodox approach. In short, it's another procedural.
"Survivor: Philippines" - Wednesday, Sept. 19 at 8PM
It's back! People are on an island! It's in the Philippines! People still watch "Survivor?"
"How I Met Your Mother" - Monday, Sept. 24 at 8PM
The ending of last season left us with a pretty big cliffhanger, but at the same time we know that Ted hasn't met the mother yet. A bonus for "True Blood" fans: Joe Manganiello will be returning to HIMYM for a multi-episode arc this season.
"2 Broke Girls" - Monday, Sept. 24 at 9PM
This sitcom fared a lot better in its first season than Whitney Cummings' other show, so naturally it's back for another go. The girls are still broke and the jokes are still slightly racist.
"Mike & Molly" - Monday, Sept. 24 at 9:30PM
Melissa McCarthy of "Bridesmaids" fame continues her work on this quietly successful sitcom, which earned her an Emmy win in 2011 and another nomination this year.
"Hawaii Five-0" - Monday, Sept. 24 at 10PM
This remake of the classic original is back for another season. It's another procedural... but there are surfboards and bikinis!
"NCIS" - Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 8PM
Tuesday night is crime night on CBS, so there's a two-hour block of "NCIS" shows. Well, let's be honest: every night is crime night on CBS.
"NCIS: Los Angeles" - Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 9PM
The two-hour block continues with this LA-based spin-off of the original, featuring LL Cool J and Chris O'Donnell as our resident Naval Criminal Investigative Services officers.
"Criminal Minds" - Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 9PM
Why, lookie here! Another police procedural! "Criminal Minds" aims to set itself apart by focusing on the criminal rather than the crime. Eight seasons in, it seems to be working.
"CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" - Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 10PM
Will the grandaddy of all modern crime procedurals run into bad luck in its 13th season? Not likely: this juggernaut will be here until CBS isn't a network anymore.
"The Big Bang Theory" - Thursday, Sept. 27 at 8PM
As a nerd, I find this show offensive.
"Two and a Half Men" - Thursday, Sept. 27 at 8:30PM
As a human being, I find this show and Ashton Kutcher offensive.
"Person of Interest" - Thursday, Sept. 27 at 9PM
Back for a second season, this crime procedural adds a sci-fi element: it's about a duo who have access to a program that predicts crimes before they happen. That's right: CBS has gotten so good at the crime procedural that they just skip to catching the bad guys before they do anything wrong.
"CSI: NY" - Friday, Sept. 28 at 8PM
It's CSI, but in New York. You get it.
"Blue Bloods" - Friday, Sept. 28 at 10PM
You could call "Blue Bloods" a police procedural, but it has more of the drama elements that non-procedural shows tend to have. You know, through-lines, season-long story arcs, on-screen action that doesn't involve criminal investigation, that sort of thing.
"48 Hours Mystery" - Saturday, Sept. 29 at 10PM
If you've had enough of all that fictional crime, you can get some true-life crime in this long-running documentary series.
"60 Minutes" - Sunday, Sept. 30 at 7PM
This show has been going since 1968, and will be entering its 44th season. That's pretty impressive, no?
"The Amazing Race" - Sunday, Sept. 30 at 8PM
"The Amazing Race" has not been running for 44 seasons but it sort of feels like it has. The show will be entering its 21st season this fall, even though it has only been running since 2001. If you're a reality nut, this is a good one: it has won eight out of nine Emmy awards in the reality competition category.
"The Good Wife" - Sunday, Sept. 30 at 9PM
Entering its fourth season, "The Good Wife" promises a "stronger" and "sexier" season this fall, according to its promos.
"The Mentalist" - Sunday, Sept. 30 at 10PM
Patrick Jane continues his hunt for Red John in the fifth season of this (you guessed it) crime procedural. Will Red John be revealed this season? No, probably not. But it'll be a fun ride anyway.
The Big Bang Theory, Partners, Vegas, Elementary, Made in Jersey, Survivor, How I Met Your Mother, 2 Broke Girls, Mike & Molly, Hawaii Five-0, NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles, Criminal Minds, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, Person of Interest, CSI: NY, 48 Hours Mystery, 60 Minutes, The Amazing Race, The Good Wife, The Mentalist, Blue Bloods