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A Look At (Some) Summer TV Shows

Posted by g3tech on July 6, 2007

Doctor Who – July 6th @ 9pm on SciFi – The doctor is impressively “in”. With over 1 million viewers each week during the last season, “Doctor Who” has quite a following. The third season kicks off with a Christmas in July celebration: a Christmas special episode where the time-traveling Doctor (returning actor David Tennant) encounters a bride who inexplicably turns up on the TARDIS. Award-winning British comedy actress Catherine Tate guest stars in the episode. In season 3, the Doctor recruits medical student Martha Jones (Freema Agyeman) to help him thwart an army that has transplanted a London hospital onto the moon. Thus, Martha becomes his new companion as Billie Piper has departed. Throughout the third season, the Doctor and Martha will have to save William Shakespeare, deal with bloodsucking aliens, encounter a clan of galactic stormtroopers, and uncover a Dalek plot in 1930s New York. No one ever said being the last Time Lord was going to be easy.

Weeds – August 13th @ 10pm on Showtime – Pot-selling suburban mother Nancy Botwin had one of the worst and busiest days of her life during last season’s finale. Her eldest son had gone missing and her other son was delivering a candid, inflammatory speech during his elementary school graduation. On top of that, Nancy’s monumental weed deal with Conrad went horribly wrong. Hopefully the fourth season for Nancy will be less chaotic, but we are dealing with the folks of Agrestic, California, where things never seem to turn out as planned. The new season of “Weeds” ushers in some fresh faces: Matthew Modine and Mary-Kate Olsen will join the cast as the mysterious Christian neighbors that move to the nearby Majestic community. Modine portrays Sullivan Groff, a land developer who quickly forms a mutually beneficial business arrangement with Nancy. But don’t expect Celia to let their little agreement slip by her. Meanwhile, Olsen’s character Tara will become Silas’ new love interest. Season 3 will also see the return of Zooey Deschanel as Andy’s crazy ex-girlfriend Kat, and Carrie Fisher as Arlene, Celia’s divorce attorney. Expect tons of dirty little secrets to be exposed this season as the dark comedy welcomes you back to life behind shiny doors and pristine lawns.

So You Think You Can Dance (read the latest news on my blog) – Wednesdays @ 8 and Thurdays @ 9 on Fox – Last summer’s #1 hit, “So You Think You Can Dance,” is back for a third round to find America’s next favorite dancer. The show’s producers will scour New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Atlanta, auditioning tons of wannabe dancers and whittling them down to a group that best represents the rhythm of America. The lucky and talented dancers who initially spark the judges’ interest will be invited to call-backs, where they’ll have the opportunity to work with top-notch choreographers. After call-back week the Top 20 dancers will continue to the competition round. Once there, they’ll dance their way into your hearts with a variety of sizzling numbers ranging from the “street” styles of hip-hop, krumping, and popping to “the best of ballroom” in salsa, quickstep, jive, and more. Don’t miss a dancing phenomenon that’s guaranteed to get your toes tapping.

Hell’s Kitchen – Mondays @ 9 on Fox – “Hell’s Kitchen” is back for a third season, because second helpings are never enough. Chef Gordon Ramsay will once again have 12 would-be restaurateurs vying for the ultimate culinary prize — the coveted title of Head Chef at a new fine Italian restaurant at the Green Valley Ranch Resort and Spa in Las Vegas. Chef Ramsay is loud, abrasive, and ready to put the chefs on the chopping block as he guides them through his hellish culinary boot camp. Each week Ramsay will grill the ambitious hopefuls as they attempt to prove they have what it takes to run their own restaurant. He will slice and dice the contestants, keeping only those who possess the right combination of ingredients to ensure success. The contestants’ inexperience, combined with the perfectionist Ramsay’s acid tongue, may be a recipe for disaster, but for one aspiring restaurateur, it’s the chance of a lifetime. In this pressure-cooker environment, only one thing is certain: If you can’t stand the heat, get out of “Hell’s Kitchen.”

Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List – Tuesdays @ 10 on Bravo – The perpetual D-Lister and comedian extraordinaire Kathy Griffin is back for another season of adventures and drama. In the third-season opener, Kathy reflects on events in her life, emotionally addressing her divorce. Meanwhile, she prepares for an A-list gig at Carnegie Hall and a starring role in a corporate film. Kathy employs a tour manager/housemate/company whipping boy named Tom and also does her assistant Jessica a huge favor by hiring an assistant for her. Only in Hollywood do assistants need assistants. Appearing in the season premiere are Whoopi Goldberg, Rosie O’Donnell, Joan Rivers, and former “American Idol” finalist Kellie Pickler.

Big Love – Mondays @ 9 on HBO – The second season of Emmy and Golden Globe nominated “Big Love” finds the Utah businessman Bill (along with his three wives, three houses and three families) trying to find the person responsible for outing his first wife Barb as a polygamist at Utah’s Mother of the Year ceremony. Making matters worse, a failed expansion and a suspicious employee entangle Bill’s work at Henrickson Home Plus. Meanwhile, back at the fundamentalist Juniper Hill compound, Prophet Roman Grant sets his sights on Bill’s brother Joey as leverage to regain a share of the family business. Roman turns up the heat on Wanda to try to get want he wants. Throw a pregnant Margene, an absent Barb, an overcompensating Nicki and seven needy kids into the mix, and Bill won’t be getting much sleep at any of his houses. The Henricksons, though atypical, are just another family trying to live the American dream as they push the boundaries of the evolving institution of marriage.

Kyle XY – Mondays @ 8 on ABC Family – The teenage boy with no name, no past and no navel has come a long way since the day he was found wandering alone. Kyle slowly integrated himself amongst the Trager family and discovered his amazing abilities. But the mystery about who he really is has just begun. In the second-season premiere, Kyle spends time in quiet seclusion with Adam Baylin, who tells him more about his past. Can Kyle trust Adam? Does he hold the key to solving the mystery behind Kyle’s identity? It was revealed during last season’s finale that the company was making a superior model labeled XX which is “in excellent condition.” Could this model be the female counterpart to Kyle? Will Kyle find out the Company’s intentions? Back at the Trager home, Kyle has left clues for Declan, but is it too late? Can the Tragers get used to life without Kyle? How will Nicole deal with his absence?

Rescue Me – Wednesdays @ 10 on FX – Back for a fourth season, this gritty drama centers on the inner workings of Ladder 62, a New York City firehouse, and the personal and emotional battles of its members in a post-9/11 world. Recovering alcoholic Tommy Gavin, the senior firefighter, is still haunted by the memories of people he has watched perish on the job. As the fourth season begins, Tommy’s ex-wife Janet has given birth to a baby boy — whom she fears prefers Tommy to her. But Tommy has a bigger problem: he’s suspected of starting the beach-house fire. How will he prove his innocence? Besides trying to clear his name, Tommy struggles to resist the advances of the volunteer firefighter (Jennifer Esposito) who rescued him from the beach house. Elsewhere, Chief Reilly’s son asks him to be his best man at his commitment ceremony. Will Jerry accept? Richie wants Franco to marry Natalie, but can a notorious ladies man settle down? This season, expect guest appearances by Larenz Tate, Jerry Adler, Jennifer Esposito, and Susan Sarandon.

Top Chef – Wednesdays @ 10 on Bravo – The temperature in the kitchen rises as the third season of “Top Chef” heads to sunny Miami. Fifteen budding chefs will descend upon Miami Beach, where they’ll compete for the coveted “Top Chef” title, a state-of-the-art Kenmore PRO kitchen, an editorial feature in “Food & Wine” magazine, the opportunity to showcase his or her skills at the “Food & Wine” Classic in Aspen, Colorado, and $100,000 to “kick start” their culinary career. Tom, Gail and Padma return with new judge Ted Allen from “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.” Among this season’s guests judges are author-chef Anthony Bourdain, Chef Norman Van Aken, and Chef Alfred Portale. The contestants will compete in various cooking challenges from catering a gourmet barbecue party to working with Miami’s fresh seafood. Who will serve up delicious fares, and who will get sent home for dishing out a dud?

The Simple Life – Sundays @ 10 on E! – Brace yourself, ’cause they’re back! Hollywood’s most infamous celebutante pair Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie return to our TV screens for more mayhem and mischief. This next unknown territory the girls are encountering is summer camp. Ed and Dawn Bellante, the directors of Camp Shawnee in Malibu, California, have hired Paris and Nicole as camp counselors. Have they just made a big mistake? Are they not aware of the hijinks Paris and Nicole are capable of? In the episodes to come, expect to see the duo “exercising” with the campers and giving beauty pageant advice.

The 4400 – Sundays @ 9 on USA – The 4400 are among us and they have the power to save humanity… if the world will let them. The sci-fi saga of “The 4400” returns for a fourth season with dosages of promicin spreading like wildfire. Many people believe that promicin is a gift and that everyone should have the right to take it, even though there’s a chance that it will kill you instead of giving you superhuman abilities. Who will be willing to take the risk? Who will fight for Jordan Collier’s cause, and who will fight against him? In the fourth season opener, NTAC gets a new director as they face off against a high school student with the promicin-induced ability to make people worship him like a god. Meanwhile Tom visits Isabelle in prison and Diana searches for her sister, who also took promicin. With the help of a girl named Cassie, Kyle is able to wake Shawn from his coma. Meanwhile, Collier wrestles with his conscience as the death toll from promicin continues to rise.

Making The Band IV – Mondays @ 10 on MTV – Diddy hopes to add another musical group to his existing empire with the next installment of “Making the Band.” With the success of “Danity Kane,” Diddy checks off all-girl group from his list of things to conquer. So up next on the list is an all-male superstar group. Watch as guys from all over America sing and dance for Diddy’s seal of approval. Diddy seems to have the Midas touch more often than not. Will this ideal group of guys become the next music sensation or will they be like “Da Band” and fall into an abyss of obscurity?

The Closer – Mondays @ 9 on TNT – Television’s top detective is back on the case this summer! Golden Globe winner Kyra Sedgwick returns in TNT’s “The Closer,” cable’s #1 series of all time. Sedgwick plays Brenda Johnson, a cranky yet cunning investigator and interrogator with a remarkable talent for getting criminals to spew the truth. Season 3 will be filled with compelling and complex cases that will continue to test Brenda’s skills as she deals with suspects as well as with her own imperfections and neuroses. The third season will kick off with an uninterrupted and commercial-free episode where Brenda and the team investigate the violent murder of a family with one survivor: their drug-abusing teenaged son. In the office, budget cuts resulting in dramatic changes throughout the LAPD, including the potential retirement of one PHD squad member. On the home front, Fritz thinks it’s time that he and Brenda find a new house.

My Super Sweet 16 – Mondays @ 9 on MTV – They’re back! The not-so-sweet teens return for another season of birthday party mania. Go on a wild ride behind the scenes as these wealthy teens prepare for their most important coming-of-age celebration. They are willing to do whatever it takes to mark this turning point in their lives… as long as their parents agree to submit to their every demanding and over-the-top wish. The season kicks off with Audrey Reyes’ haute couture Quince. 14-year-old Audrey is a self-proclaimed Miami princess, who will throw as many tantrums as it takes to have the most fabulous birthday party. Watch as she stars in a music video, preps her royal court, and shops for a brand new car. Will this princess have the best night of her life, or will the party be called off?

Extreme Makeover – Mondays @ 9 on ABC – “Extreme Makeover” returns with a jaw-dropping episode where a small town girl will have a fairytale makeover of a lifetime. Micha is a legally blind 30-year-old woman with a severe overbite that makes it difficult for her to talk. The “Extreme Team” consisting of the nation’s top plastic surgeons, eye surgeons, cosmetic dentists, hair and makeup artists, stylists, and personal trainers will work their magic to not only transform Micha’s physical appearance, but to change her life and destiny as well. Later in the episode, a 45-year-old below-the-knee amputee will get his dreams to come true with an extreme makeover. Regis Philbin and wakeboarder Tara Hamilton will appear in this new episode to lend their support for Micha and Chris.

Big Brother 8 – Tuesdays @ 9 and Sundays @ 8 on CBS – Most of us agree that “Big Brother: All-Stars” was anything but stellar, so we’re glad to report that this season will feature an entire new crop of houseguests. As usual, the 14 houseguests will a share a house that’s equipped with cameras and microphones to record their every move, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The houseguests will have to use their brain, brawn and charm to outplay one another and walk away with the cash grand prize. It wouldn’t be “Big Brother” without a surprise twist in store for the houseguests. This season, some of the houseguests will find out that they’ll become roomies with someone from their past they’d hoped to never see again, or someone with whom there is an extreme amount of tension. Enemies will come face-to-face and bitter rivalries will turn up the house’s drama quota. If there were fights before in the house, there will be wars now! Another new element to the show is that viewers will be given the interactive opportunity to have the most control they’ve ever had over someone in the house. One of the house’s participants has been chosen to be “America’s Player.” Viewers at home will get to assign a task to “America’s Player” each week. The player must complete the task without revealing that they’re working on behalf of the viewers. If the player accomplishes the mission, he/she will be financially rewarded. “America’s Player” does not have immunity from elimination.

Posted in Big Brother, Big Love, Doctor Who, Extreme Makeover, Hell's Kitchen, Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List, Kyle XY, Making The Band, My Super Sweet 16, Rescue Me, So You Think You Can Dance, Technology, The 4400, The Closer, The Simple Life, Top Chef, TV, Weeds | Leave a Comment »