The Fall 2006 television season is drawing dangerously close. With the summer series nearing their finales, it is time to look forward to the cooling of temperatures and the return of some of your favorite shows. Plus, there is a whole cadre of new shows to watch wither and die or explode out of the gate – there is no in between. So without further ado, let's take a look at what Fox has to offer. They are getting a head start on things by starting some of their shows in the month of August.
- 24 Everyone's favorite super agent, Jack Bauer, returns for a sixth go around. Just like the past 2 seasons, the show will not begin until January 2007, where it will run straight through with no reruns or missed weeks. Last we saw Jack, he was on a ship bound for China after he was captured following the discovery that he was still alive. You see, back in season 4 he led an assault on the Chinese embassy, and memories are long. Next season will pick up sometime after he gets out of China, following rigorous torture. I cannot wait to see where the next season will take us.
- American Dad (Sunday ,September 10, 8:30) Seth McFarlane's sister series to Family Guy is making a comeback in a new slot, 8:30pm, following The Simpsons. I never thought of this as better than Family Guy, but it has held its own and developed into a pretty funny series. It will be entering its third season.
- Bones (Wednesday, August 30, 8:00) Surprising this viewer, this show, starring David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel, will be returning for season two. I enjoyed the first season. The series follows the exploits of a forensic anthropologist and an FBI agent as they crack murder mysteries. The series' strength was in the dynamic interaction among the cast and that is more than enough reason to watch.
- Family Guy (Sunday, September 10, 9:00) One of the funniest, most absurd, most brain dead shows is returning. I thought after the return of the show following the mishandling and ultimate cancellation a few years ago, it would be a shadow of its former self. Fortunately, they proved me wrong. Let's hope they can keep it up.
- House (Tuesday, September 10, 8:00) One of the best shows to emerge over the past few years will be making a move to an earlier timeslot, a move I hope does not lead to tamer subject matter. The series is a perfect blend of plot against characters. Looking forward to House's new cases.
- King of the Hill Fox has this one slated to come back, even though I could have sworn it had been cancelled. Well, there is hope as they have not yet given a return date.
- The Loop Here is another show that does not have a return date. Presumably, it will come in as a mid-season replacement for some failed series. Though, I thought this failed during its first half-season.
- The OC No scheduled return date yet. To be honest, I have little to say about this show as I do not watch it, nor do I have any real interest in it.
- Prison Break (Monday, August 21, 8:00) The first season was excellent, except for the lackluster finale. That said, I am very much looking forward to what the new season will bring. Scofield and the rest of his group are now outside the walls of the prison; all they have to do is not get caught.
- The Simpsons (Sunday, September 10, 8:00) I kind of wish this show had ended years ago. The funnies have become scarcer and scarcer. Still, it is moving into season 16.
- The War at Home (Sunday, September 10, 9:30) Why couldn't this show have faded into obscurity? Awful show. Well, it's still here, only in a new timeslot.
- Happy Hour (Thursday, September 7, 8:30) Okay, I read the description for the show and I think we may have a failure on our hands. A successful small-town guy moves to the big city where everything goes wrong and he falls in with a rogue's gallery of friends, or something like that. Next.
- Justice (Wednesday, August 30, 9:00) Jerry Bruckheimer is bringing us another law show. Not sure if one is needed, but this will be worth checking out due to the presence of Victor Garber, who was excellent on the now-defunct Alias.
- Standoff (Tuesday, September 5, 9:00) This looks like it could be interesting. It stars Ron Livingston (Office Space) and Gina Torres (Firefly, Angel) as member of an FBI Crisis Negotiation Unit. Looks to be something along the lines of 24, but with a team, and no time restrictions. I will be checking this one out.
- 'Til Death (Thursday, September 7, 8:00) On the heels of Everybody Loves Raymond, Brad Garrett has jumped back into series television about the married life with this new series. The show focuses on the differences between a new marriage and one attempting to withstand the test of time. Commercials look funny.
- Vanished (Monday, August 21, 9:00) Paired up with Prison Break, at least for now, this show has a good lead-in. It is the story of the young wife of a senator who has gone missing, and what the FBI does about getting her back. Among the stars are Rebecca Gayheart and Ming Na.
- The Wedding Album A series without a scheduled opener, this looks like it could either be mildly entertaining or completely annoying. It is about a playboy wedding photographer and his new young assistant. I guess we will have to wait and see where this gets slotted.
- The Winner No scheduled debut, this is Seth McFarlane's first foray into live action, co-writing with his Family Guy co-producer and show creator Ricky Blitt. Not sure what to think about this one, but it could be fun. It is about a thirty-something living with his parents looking to make something of his life.
That does it. I left out a few things, like reality shows, as I couldn't really care less about them. This season looks to have a few decent new shows, but I cannot say I am terribly excited about the overall lineup. Which is probably a good thing, as I watch too much already. If you are interested, Fox has the airtime grid online to help you schedule your viewing time.