With fall about a month away, TV fans find themselves shouting in exhaustion, "It's about time!" Let's face it, reruns make us long for the days before television existed, when people entertained themselves by listening to radio shows or (gasp!) talking to their families. Now, as August quickly turns to September, fans, with remote control fingers well rested, turn their attention to the new shows awaiting them. The following is just a brief taste of the 2007/2008 comedies hoping to make you laugh, or at least keep you from changing the channel.
Cavemen: Straight from the GEICO Insurance commercials comes the comedy about three archaic friends and their quest to fit into a modern world. Touching on stereotypes and the relationships of people from different backgrounds, Cavemen gives viewers a chance to hear, and cheer, for the most obvious of outcasts. Airing on Tuesdays at 8 pm on ABC, Cavemen may have a chance if it can add to its advertising success. If not, at least they have that "inventor of fire" thing on their resume. Once Cavemen debuts, there is a good chance that the GEICO gecko will become angered and demand a series of his own. He could be the next Godzilla, ya know?
The Big Bang Theory: From one of the minds behind Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory explodes. A comedy featuring Leonard (Roseanne's Johnny Galecki) and Sheldon (Judging Amy's Jim Parsons), this series depicts two guys with the scientific knowledge of an Albert Einstein and the social skills of Michael Scott, particularly when it comes to women. When their newly single, pretty neighbor moves in, Leonard and Sheldon are forced to realize that science isn't the answer to everything. Based on the fish out of water concept, this series is like a geek out of pocket protector story. Airing on Mondays at 8:30 on CBS, The Big Bang Theory should have some humorous, and widely endearing, moments.
Back to You: Kelsey Grammer returns to TV, hoping to bring with him the charm and appeal that has made him a primetime sweetheart. Back to You, airing on Wednesdays at 8 on FOX, features Grammer as Chuck Darling, a conceited, tail-chasing man, and Patricia Heaton as Kelly Carr, an uptight, rigid woman, in the roles of a 1990s TV news duo that dominated the airwaves. After Chuck leaves for bigger and better things, he is forced to return after his reputation is hindered by an outburst that shows up on the Internet. Humbled, embarrassed, and even bored, Chuck reunites with Kelly to host the news and begins questioning his off-the-air behavior. Perhaps he should call a radio psychiatrist to talk about his problems?
The Rules for Starting Over: From the hilarious, often jaw-dropping minds of the Farrelly Brothers comes a series about recently single friends forced to begin anew in their thirties. Whether divorced once or three times, all friends find themselves in the same boat: a boat that wants to get remarried. All members of the group, sans one, are male. The sole female is a 30-year-old lawyer who represented all three men during their divorces. She's never been married, but found herself dumped after being engaged for seven long years. Actually premiering after fall, in Spring 2008, the premise of The Rules for Starting Over sounds fairly tame, yet, with the Farrelly boys in tow, chances are it will be anything but.
The Return of Jezebel James: A series about estranged, dissimilar sisters who are brought together in motherhood, The Return of Jezebel James, Wednesdays at 8:30 on FOX, features Parker Posey as Sarah Thomkins, a strong, determined, and intelligent women with a career as a children's book editor. Despite a life filled with success, a brown-nosing assistant, and a casual love affair, she find her life lacking something: a child. She decides to have a baby then she learns she can't. Enter Lauren Ambrose as Coco, Sarah's younger, eccentric, free-spirited sister. After weighing her options, Sarah asks Coco if she will carry her baby. Though Coco initially refuses, the realization that Sarah has turned Coco's imaginary childhood friend, Jezebel James, into a book helps her change her mind. It seems to me that most siblings would reply to a surrogate request such as this with the heartfelt, sisterly question: "What will you give me?"