Summer TV; Not an Oxymoron Anymore

Just when you thought it was safe to turn off your TV and go outside for awhile, the cable networks come along and make sure you keep power-lounging. Here’s what I’m programming into the DVR this summer:

ABC Family: I’m still chapped at them for canceling the fun Ten Things I Hate About You remake out of nowhere.  But check out:

  • The Nine Lives of Chloe King.  She’s a pretty teen who discovers she has sort of god-cat abilities and is from an ancient race of protectors.  Skews young, but the pilot was enjoyable.  Not on On Demand but you can download the pilot for free for a limited time at ABC Family’s website. On Tuesdays.

USA Network: Most of the programming has become a little light and “aspirant” for me (a word from USA’s own branding language.) But I do recommend:

  • Covert Affairs. Best opening credits in recent years, check it out. Fills in that Alias hole, from before Alias went, you know, nuts. 2nd season has already premiered; you can catch past episodes on On Demand for awhile and new eps on Tuesdays.
  • Suits. New series–USA still has enough goodwill with me that I’ll check out all their new stuff. Apparently, a sketchy fellow with a photographic memory pretends to be a law student and buddy-movie cliches abound. It’s like Catch Me if You Can meets Psych, which is okay with me–I like both of those. Premieres Thursday, June 23.

(If, like me, you’re wondering when Psych premieres, good question. USA’s site really doesn’t want you to know. It’s after July, that’s for sure. Fall 2011. Ohhhkay.)


Though their original shows are a far cry from the heady intensity of the brilliant Battlestar Galactica, their “brand” still delivers some fun and intrigue for genre fans. I’m looking forward to the 2nd season of the surprisingly good:

  • Haven.  Loosely based on a Stephen King story, this show started off a little stiff but then built to a terrific first season finale.  Premieres Friday, July 15th.

  • Alphas. From SyFy’s site: “Five ordinary people are brought together to form one extraordinary team of Alphas — people with the unique power to stretch the capabilities of the human mind giving them superhuman physical and mental abilities.” Sounds like X-Men meets The X-Files and if it’s one-tenth as good as either, I’ll be satisfied. Premieres Monday, July 11.


  • Falling Skies. Of course I’m going to give this a chance: Spielberg. Aliens. Post-apocalyptic.  But after watching the pilot, I’m a lot less enthused.  For a TNT show, they go awfully soft at times.  And the music score is right out of the John Williams school of full-orchestra emoting.  Wonder what the characters are feeling, and what we’re supposed to be feeling?  Just tune into the score, they’ll tell you in no uncertain terms.  But the actors are good and I’m curious about the aliens–I’ll give it another go.  Already premiered on Sunday–past eps on On Demand, new eps on Sundays.
  • The Closer: If you haven’t started watching this excellent show, don’t start now. Catch the first 7 seasons on DVD first. Then tune in Monday, July 11 for the premiere of the final season.


  • Teen Wolf. Good to see Jeph Loeb’s name in the credits–he was a good writer on Smallville, Heroes and Lost. Though the pace is a little MTVish and the plot can often be discerned by how much of Tyler Posey’s chest is exposed, there’s still something fun about this latest redux of the teen wolf legend.  And hey, the soundtrack is bound to be good, in a CW kind of way.  Watch Mondays.


  • So, Wilfred: “Everyone else sees Wilfred as a dog, but Ryan sees a crude, surly, irrepressibly brave and honest man in a dog suit.” Yeah, I know. Sounds like if Donnie Darko and Harvey went out for a drink. But I’ll tune in and see if Elijah Wood translates to the small screen. Premieres Thursday, June 23rd. Just like a lot of the good stuff.

You DO have a dual-tuner DVR, yes? And On Demand? And access to Hulu? If not, I’m afraid you’re not enough of a TV geek to be able to watch every single thing you want simultaneously. Guess you’ll just have to get some sun instead.

Next up on Devlin’s blog: Book signing do’s and don’t’s.

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