Fall TV Preview


“My Name is Earl”

Premieres: Tonight at 8 p.m. on NBC

After a successful run on Thursdays, the ensemble cast of “My Name is Earl” returns for its sophomore season with Earl (Clerks 2‘s Jason Lee) still trying to right his wrongs by crossing people off of his list, but also giving the rest of the cast more background.

“(Earl’s storyline is) the same basic premise,” said Ethan Suplee, who plays Earl’s best friend, Randy. “But Joy will have a seperate story arc (and) Randy has a seperate story arc.”

One of the reasons for the success of the show last year was that it deviated from the usual sitcom-with-a-live-studio feel to something that appeared as something more cinematic.

“I did (the laugh track format) with ‘Boy Meets World,'” Suplee said. “It’s a weird format. It’s presumptuous to indicate to the audience when to laugh. This is more like a movie and you work a lot harder.”

Suplee said that there will be no new main characters but said there will be some great guest spots for returning guests such as Giovanni Ribisi as well as “Strangers With Candy’s” Amy Sedaris, Burt Reynolds and Roseanne Barr.

Tonight’s episode will focus on Earl making up for never taking the side of his ex-wife, Joy, when she gets in an argument with her husband Darnell. Future episodes will also focus on Earl attempting to make good with a friend by getting a loan from a local strip club owner as well as number 91 on his list – “Made fun of Maggie Lester for having a moustache.”

– Andrew Gaug



Premieres: Monday at 9 p.m. on NBC

NBC’s “Heroes” is promising to be one of the biggest hits of the new season with a lot of hype and push from the network. The show follows a diverse group of people who all discover they have superpowers.

For those of you expecting this to be another “Smallville,” think again.

“The show really isn’t a superhero show,” said consulting producer Bryan Fuller. “It’s about regular people realizing they have superpowers and it’s about how they deal with it. The show is really Magnolia meets X-Men if I had to make a parallel.”

The diverse cast of characters includes a professor from India trying to uncover facts about his father’s death, an artist who paints prophetic works, a nurse who thinks he can fly, a Japanese man who thinks he can teleport and stop time, a single mom with a deadly split personality and a cheerleader who can’t die.

“Each and every character had a metaphor on their journey, like the indestructible teenager, the single mother who is spread too thin and needs two of her, the cop who can read people’s minds,” Fuller said.

The show will follow these characters and more as they become accustomed to their lives with powers and how they may or may not interact with each other.

“It’s been such a fantastic experience and the show seems like a juggernaut,” Fuller concluded. “It’s great to be part of a show that is being supported by a network like this.”

– Bob Taylor



Premieres: Oct. 4 at 9 p.m. on ABC

Last time the cult-TV show “Lost” wrapped up its season, viewers saw main characters Jack, Kate and Hurley in peril as they were bound and gagged by the mysteriously ambiguous community of exiles known as “The Others.” The fates of other characters such as Locke and Desmond remain unresolved after a freak accident involving electromagneticism as well as seeing the first glimpse of the current world outside of the island where the story has taken place for the past two seasons.

If it sounds confusing, it’s more than likely meant to be that way as “Lost” has kept its fanbase by raising more questions than it answers and taking its time tying up loose ends.

Michael Emerson, who plays Henry Gale on the show, said this season will have its fair share of surprises.

“A lot of characters (viewers) have made secure judgments will find themselves making second guesses,” Emerson said.

Though the “Lost” writing staff makes sure that everything is kept secret, Emerson did give a preview of what’s in store for his creepy character and the group of people he belongs to – “The Others.”

“We’re going to learn a lot more about ‘The Others,'” Emerson said.

As for Henry Gale, Emerson said there are twists with him as well.

“I know that he has secrets and, for lack of a better word, he has a mission. But as for his villanous dimensions, there will be questions of whether he really is evil or not,” Emerson said.

The big questions, Emerson said, such as the location of the island the characters are trapped on and why are there are animals such as polar bears on an island, will remain to be answered.

“They can’t solve the big mysteries, those are the fuel the show runs on,” Emerson said.

– Andrew Gaug


“The Office”

Premieres: Tonight at 8:30 p.m. on NBC

It seemed like a series destined to fail -ÿa sitcom with no laugh track based on a classic British show a la other TV flops “Coupling” and “Men Behaving Badly.”

“I was a huge fan of it, I loved it,” said Brian Baumgartner, who plays Kevin on “The Office.” “I was like everyone else, I worried when I heard NBC was remaking it.”

Fortunately for the cast the show has not only survived to its third season, but also picked up an Emmy for Outstanding Comedy Series.

Angela Kinsey is frankly “tickled” about the new season of “The Office,” premiering tonight on NBC.

Kinsey plays cold-hearted accountant Angela Martin in the American version of “The Office.”

This season will be featuring two guest stars, Ed Helms, of “The Daily Show” fame, and Rashida Jones, formerly of “Boston Public.” She wouldn’t reveal many other details about the upcoming season, but let it slip that tonight’s episode is in “real time,” ending where the second season left off.

Baumgartner was more secretive about upcoming episodes.

“The first episode is entitled ‘Gay Witch Hunt,’ that’s all I can really say.”

Though Baumgarntner said rumors about the BBC “Office” cast making an appearance are unconfirmed, the show’s creators Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant will be writing an episode.

To keep things fresh, the show will also focus less on the main characters and have rotating storylines to let the audience get to know the supporting cast.

“(We have) a strong group of folks that make up the ensemble, a great second string,” Kinsey said.

Baumgartner also expressed his excitement for the new season as well as the series as a whole.

“It’s cool to be part of a project that I would personally watch,” he said.

– Madelyn Otcasek


“Veronica Mars”

Premieres: Tuesday at 9 p.m. on the CW

Despite more critical praise than almost any other network show and a rabidly devoted fan base, “Veronica Mars” has only barely escaped cancellation at the end of both of its seasons on UPN.

The show follows its title character, played by Kristen Bell, as she solves mysteries both personal and for hire with the help of her detective father.

Now the new CW network has picked up “Veronica Mars” for its third season and placed the show after one of its biggest heavyweights, “Gilmore Girls,” on Tuesdays at 9 p.m. in hopes of higher ratings.

“(The CW) are pushing the show a ton, so hopefully it will succeed,” Bell said. “I hope that our show will get a little more of a spotlight. I think that the networks merging will really give viewers of The WB and UPN an opportunity to see these other shows. I think it opens it up for new viewers, so it would be great.”

Instead of one season-long mystery, “Veronica Mars” will feature three arced mysteries unfolding over the course of the season.

“They wanted to make it a little easier for people to jump in” Bell said. “I know that (creator) Rob Thomas was saying that he wanted people who were new viewers to be able to jump in on episode four. Having shorter storylines allows you to do that a little bit. I think it’s a way to keep it fresh and new, which our writers are really good at.”

One of this season’s big mysteries will have something to do with a rapist on the college campus “Veronica is now attending, which was the only major mystery left unsolved last season,” Bell said. She also promised a love triangle between Veronica’s current beau, Logan, and her best friend’s new roommate.

– Bob Taylor