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Two Tivos to Paradise 09.21.12: The Emmys, Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, Homeland, Tosh.0, The West Wing, and more!
Posted by Al Norton on 09.21.2012

Hello friends. That wedding I mentioned I was going to in last week's column? Easily the most fun I have ever had a nuptial celebration; hanging out with friends I've known for as many as 30 years, some I haven't seen in over a decade, was amazing and at times felt like I was in one of those feel good reunion movies. The bride was gorgeous and the groom quite handsome, although, to be honest, Mrs. Tivo stole the show in the looks department, as usual. Also noteworthy from the last week was my older brother Walter's birthday; to quote my FB post, he wasn't just the best man at my wedding, he's been my best man every day of my life.

Another week, another giveaway; this week we've got season three of Modern Family on Blu-ray for you, including all 24 episodes plus some great featurettes and the all important gag reel. I've watched the set myself and it's really great, with a ton of behind the scenes stuff; on some shows that doesn't really mean anything but with a cast and crew this quality, any/all footage is highly entertaining. Go to the Al Norton's Two Tivos To Paradise page on Facebook, click "Like" if you have not already, and then post "I loves me some Modern Family" on our wall and provided you follow our standard rules (one win every six months, one entry per person, winner must have a US or Canadian mailing address), you'll be entered to win, with the winner being chosen at random on Monday morning.

Graceland is the newest USA original series…

Here's a new trailer for the upcoming third season of The Walking Dead

I think I've finally had enough, I think I maybe news too much.

All The Gold In California Is In A Bank In The Middle Of Beverly Hills In Somebody Else's Name
The 64th Annual Prime Time Emmy Awards are Sunday at 8pm on ABC, with Jimmy Kimmel as host. Before we run down our picks for the night's biggest awards let's rundown some of the notable winners at last Saturday's Creative Arts Awards Emmys…

*Jimmy Fallon; Best Male Guest Star, Comedy (Saturday Night Live)
*Kathy Bates; Best Female Guest Star, Comedy (Two and a Half Men)
*Jeremy Davies; Best Male Guest Star, Drama (Justified)
*Martha Plimpton; Best Female Guest Star, Drama (The Good Wife)
*Girls; Best Casting, Comedy
*Homeland; Best Casting, Drama
*Undercover Boss; Best Reality Series
*Wizards of Waverly Place; Best Children's Program
*The Penguins of Madagascar; Best Animated Program

Game of Thrones was the night's big winner, picking up six technical awards.

And now let's get to my picks…FYI – my choices for "Should Win" are based on the nominees, not who I would have chosen if it were up to me; for those picks check out The Norty Awards column from a few weeks back…

Ed O'Neal, Modern Family; Ty Burrell, Modern Family; Eric Overstreet, Modern Family; Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Modern Family; Bill Hader, Saturday Night Live; Max Greenfield; New Girl

Should Win: Max Greenfield

Will Win: Ed O'Neal

Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory; Merritt Weaver, Nurse Jackie; Julie Bowen, Modern Family; Kristen Wiig, Saturday Night Live; Sofia Vergara, Modern Family; Kathryn Joosten, Desperate Housewives

Should Win: Mayim Balik

Will Win: Mayim Balik

Aaron Paul, Breaking Bad; Giancarlo Esposito, Breaking Bad; Brendan Coyle, Downton Abbey; Jim Carter, Downton Abbey; Jared Harris, Mad Men; Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones

Should Win: Giancarlo Esposito

Will Win: Giancarlo Esposito

Anna Gunn, Breaking Bad; Archie Punjabi, The Good Wife; Christine Baranski, The Good Wife; Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey; Joanne Froggatt, Downton Abbey; Christina Hendricks, Mad Men

Should Win: Anna Gunn

Will Win: Maggie Smith

Larry David, Curb Your Enthusiasm; Louis CK, Louie; Jon Cryer, Two and a Half Men; Don Cheadle, House of Lies; Alec Baldwin, 30 Rock; Jim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory

Should Win: Louis CK

Will Win: Don Cheadle

Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie; Lena Dunham, Girls; Zooey Deschanel, New Girl; Tina Fey, 30 Rock; Amy Poehler, Parks and Recreation; Melissa McCarthy, Mike and Molly; Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep

Should Win: Amy Poehler

Will Win: Lena Dunham

Steve Buscemi, Boardwalk Empire; Michael C Hall, Dexter; Jon Hamm, Mad Men; Bryan Cranston, Breaking Bad; Damian Lewis, Homeland; Hugh Bonneville, Downton Abbey

Should Win: Bryan Cranston

Will Win: Damian Lewis

Elisabeth Moss, Mad Men; Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife; Kathy Bates, Harry's Law; Claire Danes, Homeland; Glenn Close, Damages; Michelle Dockery, Downton Abbey

Should Win: Claire Danes

Will Win: Claire Danes

The Amazing Race, So You Think You Can Dance, Dancing with the Stars, The Voice, Project Runway, Top Chef

Should Win: The Voice

Will Win: The Amazing Race

Cat Deeley, So You Think You Can Dance; Ryan Seacrest, American Idol; Tom Bergeron, Dancing with the Stars; Betty White, Betty White's Off Their Rockers; Phil Keoghan, The Amazing Race

Should Win: Ryan Seacrest

Will Win: Betty White

Jimmy Kimmel Live; The Colbert Report; The Daily Show with Jon Stewart; Real Time with Bill Maher; Late Night with Jimmy Fallon

Should Win: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart

Will Win: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart


30 Rock, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Girls, Veep, Modern Family, The Big Bang Theory

Should Win: Modern Family

Will Win: Girls


Mad Men, Breaking Bad, Boardwalk Empire, Downton Abbey, Homeland, Game of Thrones

Should Win: Breaking Bad

Will Win: Game of Thrones

And there you have it! Pre-game starts at 6pm on Sunday on E!, so pop some corn and plant yourself down on the couch! Use the comments section below to share your picks for who should and will win.

I Wish I Could Fly From This Building, From This Wall
The 2012-2013 TV season is upon us!!! This is the single biggest week of season/series premiere season; here is your guide to the week…

Dancing with the Stars (ABC), 8p,
The first all-star season in series history kicks off its Sunday shoes this Monday at 8pm.

How I Met Your Mother (CBS), 8pm
News this week that writers are treating this like the final season until they hear otherwise makes what was already an anticipated season 8 premiere that much more so.

Partners* (CBS), 8:30pm
A strong cast and quality executive producers can't keep Partners from escaping mediocrity in its pilot. I will give it at least one more shot as its not terrible and average comedies do serve a purpose (22 minutes of background while you iron and fold laundry isn't as easy to find as you'd think) but the first episode did not meet my expectations.

2 Broke Girls (CBS), 9pm
The Emperor's New Clothes of last season, if you ask me. Hell, 2 Broke Girls makes The Big Bang Theory look like Seinfeld. I simply don't get the broad appeal of this show (no pun intended).

Mike & Molly (CBS), 9:30pm
When I mentioned an average comedy when talking about Partners above, Mike & Molly was kind of what I had in mind; it's a decent mix of a good cast and lazy writers giving them the bare minimum to work with. The actors do find a way to rise above but just barely.

Castle (ABC), 10pm
Castle is doing what it can to keep the show fresh as it enters its fifth season, with some strong cast additions (in particular Jack Coleman coming on board in a recurring role) and the show fully addressing the romance between the two lead characters.

Hawaii 5-0 (CBS), 10pm
Season three of the easiest-on-the-eyes procedural on TV right now finds Christine Lahti, she of the mantle with an Oscar, Emmy, and Golden Globe award, joining the cast as McGarrett's Mom. The conspiracy storyline has lost me at this point but the actors have a ton of fun with their parts and the mysteries of the week are pretty solid.

NCIS (CBS), 8pm
The most watched scripted series on TV several years running with no signs of slowing down, Mark Harmon et al return for another 22 episode run of solving crimes with healthy doses of character generated humor.

New Girl (Fox), 8pm
Last year's breakout pop culture phenomenon is back and out to prove it is not a one season wonder. Two episodes air on Tuesday; one at 8pm and another new episode at 9pm, giving both new Fox comedies a strong lead-in.

Ben and Kate* (Fox), 8:30pm
Ben and Kate's pilot may have been more endearing then it was good but that's fine for an opening episode as it makes me want to see what these folks do next. I laughed and I liked the people on screen and that's really all I was looking for so I was pleased.

NCIS: LA (CBS), 9pm
The cynical, jaded part of my personality wants to say that this show's success is proof that Americans are lazy and don't like turning the channel but that would be doing a disservice to the chemistry of the leads; Chris O'Donnell and L.L. Cool J really are fun to watch together and the hour does go by a fast pace.

The Mindy Project (Fox), 9:30pm
Easily one of my favorite new shows of the 2012-2013 season, The Mindy Project is funny, smart, sometimes dark, and on top of that has a strong point of view; some are not going to be fans but as someone who watched a LOT of TV it's always great when you see a show that is representing a distinct set of storytelling sensibilities instead of going for the broadest possible appeal. I look forward to the world realizing Mindy Kaling is so much more than Kelly Kapoor.

Private Practice (ABC), 10pm
What is widely considered to be the final 13 episode run of Private Practice begins on Tuesday at 10pm, with series star Kate Walsh having announced she was done after this set of episodes. While it's possible ABC tries to keep the show alive without her, it's not likely. More likely is perhaps taking a character or two from PP and shifting them over to Grey's Anatomy, namely Derek's sister Amelia.

Vegas* (CBS), 10pm
I will give Vegas at least one more shot but the finished product was simply what one would assume considering the quality of the people who created, write, and star in the show. It's almost unforgivable to have an actor the likes of Michael Chiklis and give him a bland part with nothing to chew on. I can see this show being a solid hit for CBS, no doubt, and it's not bad, it's just not good, either. At least not yet.

Animal Practice* (NBC), 8pm
I am not sure if The Mob Doctor is the Animal Practice of dramas or if Animal Practice is The Mob Doctor of comedies but both are really quite bad. Animal Practice's crimes against television are worse because they have a very talented cast to work with but somehow everyone is upstaged by a monkey. I think they are going for a Scrubs-esque feel here but they fall woefully short.

The Middle (ABC), 8pm (one hour)
Perhaps the most underrated comedy on TV right now, The Middle is consistently funny and also gives us a very realistic look at a family living in the lower middle class, a state that is quite common in the real world but hardly ever portrayed on the small screen.

Criminal Minds (CBS), 9pm
Jeanne Tripplehorn joins the cast this season. I mean, all these deranged serial killers aren't going to catch themselves, are they?

Law & Order: SVU (NBC), 9pm (two hours)
That was one helluva ending last spring, although the tension is certainly lessened by the knowledge of how TV works and that the good Captain is not going to jail. I liked that SVU introduced us to some new recurring characters last year but at this point the stories just seem recycled and/or forced.

Modern Family (ABC), 9pm
I didn't realize how much backlash there was against Modern Family's third season, with a not small amount of fans thinking it was not up to the standards of the first two years. It has the best demos of any scripted series on TV, so some of that may come from that thing that happens where people seem to have to dislike something simply because it's popular. Also, the first two seasons were not just good but GREAT, so that bar was set pretty high. Sure, there were some episodes that were just ok but I'll take just ok Modern Family over most comedies on TV, and there were some episodes that were as good as anything they've done (Cam reuniting with his clown partner killed me). I look forward to seeing what the writers will do with the material they gave themselves in last spring's finale.

The Neighbors* (ABC), 9:30pm
It's not hard to watch The Neighbors and think the writers knew exactly what they were doing, going for a so-bad-it's-good vibe, a sort of "cheesy on purpose" thing…I am not saying they succeeded – to be honest, after the pilot, I really didn't know what to think other than to wonder how the show got on the air – but I will give them credit for a sustained tone and feel throughout the episode.

CSI (CBS), 10pm
Thought to be on its last leg a year or so ago. CSI has added Ted Danson and Elisabeth Shue to the cast and revitalized itself a bit. Ratings are solid and the quality of the show is, too.

The Big Bang Theory (CBS), 8pm
At this point I certainly can't argue with the results The Big Bang Theory puts up week in and week out, the most watched comedy on TV for a couple of years now. Of course, the show it took that title from was Two and a Half Men, so I'll leave you to decided whether popularity equals quality. What I will say is that I haven't heard any complaints about a drop in quality from fans, so the writers and cast deserve credit for keeping their large audience happy.

The Last Resort* (ABC), 8pm
The best major network drama pilot of the fall season, not surprising when you consider it combines the talents of Shawn Ryan and Andre Braugher, two people who are individually responsible for some of the most sustained intensity TV has seen in the last 20 years. Similar to Revolution, the key here will be what happens next and how they juggle the week-to-week stories with the overall tale being told, but after an hour I am totally on board.

Two and a Half Men (CBS), 8:30pm
Not only did Two and Half Men survive in year one of the post-Charlie Sheen era but it held its own, and now that it's moved to this new timeslot, with the most watched comedy on TV as its lead-in, chances are ratings will be even bigger. The demos are certainly going down but the total viewer count is more than healthy enough to keep the show going for an additional year or two.

Grey's Anatomy (ABC), 9pm
Last spring's finale was certainly a polarizing one, and then came word that Dr Mark Sloane would no longer be roaming the halls at Seattle Grace, which makes this somewhat of a transition season for Grey's, with two major characters gone (and perhaps a third joining them in the premiere?) and some new blood being introduced over the course of the first few episodes.

Person of Interest (CBS), 9pm
Calling something a surprising hit is obviously a back handed compliment and also implies the network put it on the air thinking it wouldn't do well but Person of Interest qualifies for the title, becoming the most watched show of the night by the end of the season (it usually finished third in the demos in the time slot but that's the average CBS viewer for you).

Elementary* (CBS), 10pm
Elementary may have some buzz, and I predict it to be a hit, but it really couldn't be less appealing to me. Another procedural, and this one with a genius with some major social issues/quirks who solves the cases each week. And the idea of Sherlock Holmes and Watson hooking up? Wow, no thank you. When was the last time CBS premiered a new drama that wasn't about crimes being committed, solved, and/or prosecuted? Seriously, when was it, because I don't know. Wait, Miami Medical, maybe?

Scandal (ABC), 10pm
Another surprising hit from last spring if only because shows that premiere ¾ of the way through the season with a limited run don't usually get renewed. Kerry Washington is clearly a star and this is a strong showcase for her talents.

Sunny Day, Sweepin' The Clouds Away, On My Way To Where The Air Is Sweet
The Sesame Street video of the week…

But You Were Up To Your Old Tricks In Chapters Four Five And Six
All you need to know about the Nielsen's for the past 21 days…

The X Factor won the night in demos but was down 26% from night two last year…America's Got Talent was the most watched show of the night but the demos 33% to a series low for a season finale…Glee was down a bit from last season's premiere but up double digits from its season finale last spring…Rock Center with Brian Williams hit a series high in total viewers…

Shark Tank had a huge premiere on Friday night, hitting a series high in total viewers while matching the demo from last season's debut. Tank was the most watched show of the night while 20/20's season premiere had the night's top demos...ANTM hit a cycle high in total viewers while tying the high in demos...Fox burning off a left over episode of Touch led to some pretty low numbers for the drama...

The Keeping Up with the Kardashians season finale hit a season high, with its 3.6 million viewers making it one of the 25 most watched telecasts in E! history (watch, they'll make that one of their countdown specials any minute now)…When all three airings are added up there were 4.6 million people who watched the Boardwalk Empire season premiere on Sunday, up from 4.5 million who watched the season two debut last year…NBC's Sunday Night Football easily won the night in totals and demos…The Weeds series finale hit a season high, up 7% from the season premiere and 55% from last season's finale…

Revolution had a huge opening for NBC, with the best demos for a drama series premiere on any network in almost three years and the best demos for an NBC drama premiere in five years. Equally as impressive was it having the best demos of an episode of a 10pm drama on any network in three years…Bones was down 30% from last year's premiere but up 21% from the season finale last spring…The Mob Doctor opened poorly, with just slightly better numbers than Lone Star put up in that time slot two years ago (and Lone Star was cancelled after two episodes) and was down a whopping 52% from the two hour Terra Nova premiere last fall…

The Voice won the night in totals and demos, up 13% from last Tuesday…Go On basically matched last week while The New Normal was down 12%...Parenthood was down 5% from its season premiere…The season finale of So You Think You Can Dance was down 20% in the demos from last season but did score its highest totals and demos in a month…President Obama's visit helped The Late Show with David Letterman enjoy their highest rated episode since February of 2010, and that strong lead-in allowed The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson to its best numbers since February of 2009…

The X Factor won the night in demos, up a smidge from last week…The premiere of Survivor: Philippines won the night in total viewers with 11.7 million, albeit with the lowest premiere demos in series history…The finale of Big Brother was down 19% from last summer and hit a summer finale low as well…

All The Young Dudes, Carry The News
Industry News, Notes, and Hot Rumors…Comedy Central picked up a 30 episode 5th season of Tosh.0 that will premiere in January…FX won a multiple network bidding war for The Stain, an adaptation of Guillermo del Toro's vampire book series the he will write, direct, and executive produce. Carlton Cuse (Lost) will also executive produce and will be the showrunner if the network takes the project to series. Chuck Hogan, who co-authored the book with del Toro, will co-write the pilot script, about a group of people who represent the earth's only hope against a group of vampires who are taking over the planet...NBC announced that Shakira and Usher would take Christina Aguilera and Cee Lo Green's spots on The Voice for season four, which will premiere in January. Aguilera will be on tour while Green is working on two albums as well as a sitcom for NBC. Adam Levin and Blake Shelton will stay and Aguilera and Green are expected back for season five next fall…Great casting choices by New Girl; Carla Guggino has signed on for three episodes as Schmidt's new boss while Jamie Lee Curtis and Rob Reiner will play Jess' parents on the Thanksgiving episode…Laura Prepon has joined Netflix' Orange is the New Black…Howard Gordon (Homeland, 24) is one of the hardest working men in the TV business these days, with no fewer than four new shows in development for the 2013-2014 season, the latest being Vigilant, a superhero drama for Fox written by Max Landis (Chronicle) about a young woman who becomes a masked vigilante after her police officer Dad is forced to work for a corrupt boss…Another noteworthy show from Gordon is his pairing with Shaun Cassidy on Fox's untitled drama about a pair of retired CIA agents living out life in suburbia with their kids whose lives are turned upside down when old rivals discover their new identities, causing them and their teenagers to go on the run…Jesse L Martin (Law & Order) will appear on the upcoming season of Smash. Martin originated the role of Tom Collins in Rent on Broadway…Nikki Blonsky, nominated for a Golden Globe for her work in Hairspray, has also signed on for multiple episodes of Smash. Blonsky also starred in ABC Family's criminally short lived series Huge but my kids now her from the Dance Floor Superheroes episode of The Fresh Beat Band…CBS picked up a 15th cycle of Big Brother, set to air next summer…Showtime announced Sunday January 13th as the season premiere date for Shameless, House of Lies, and Californication…The CW and Steven Spielberg's Amblin Entertainment are working on an adaptation of the recently published young adult novel Embrace, about woman in her early 20's who finds out not only is she half angel but she's a key player in a battle with fallen angels for the fate of the earth…ABC Family has ordered three new pilots; Terminales (adaptation of a Mexican series about a young girl's life after she is diagnosed with a terminal illness), Continuing Fred (comedy about a 20something slacker who finds surprising success as an elementary school teacher), and Phys Ed (comedy about a former local sports star who starts teaching at his old high school)…Emmy winner Annie Potts has joined the cast of the USA pilot Paging Dr. Freed, about two brothers who are Doctors who inherit their Dad's highly successful gynecological practice…British fashion reporter Louise Roe will replace Elle McPherson as host of Fashion Star…Syfy picked up a third season of Haunted Collector…Jim Gaffigan is developing a comedy for CBS with Peter Tolan (Rescue Me) on board as an executive producer…Freddie Highmore (Finding Neverland, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) will play a young Norman Bates in A&E's Bates Motel…Ratings for week one of The Jeff Probst Show are so low that cancellation talk has already begun…FEARnet has acquired the rights to Tales from the Crypt reruns and will air them in two hour blocks on Fridays at 10pm starting 10/5…Travel Channel has picked up new seasons of Bizarre Foods, Baggage Battles, Hotel Impossible, Trip Flip, and Toy Hunter…Oscar winner F Murray Abraham will do multiple episodes on the upcoming season of Homeland…James Caan and TTTP fave Esai Morales will be regulars on the second season of Starz' Magic City…HBO has ordered a pilot on Criminal Justice, a legal drama with some serious pedigree; the script was written by Oscar winner Steven Zaillian (Schindler's List, Moneyball, Gangs of New York) and Oscar nominated Richard Price (Color of Money, Sea of Love, Clockers, The Wire) and is an adaptation of an award winning BBC series where each season would focus on a different murder case, with a new cast each time. Emmy & Golden Globe winner James Gandolfini will executive produce and star, playing a low rent lawyer representing a young man who wakes up next to a dead body and is charged with murder. The plan would be for Gandolfini's character to return with a new case if the show got a second season…FX has ordered a pilot on a comedy written by Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter. Diva. Clown. Killer. is a dark comedy about a former 80's pop singer, her son who works as a clown at kid's parties, and a killer-for-hire. Sutter is looking at his wife, Sons' star Katey Sagal, as the lead (depending on her SOA schedule, of course). Sutter described the new show in a statement; "I look at SOA as being an intense drama, where the murder and mayhem are made palatable by absurd, dark humor. This half-hour will be an absurd, dark comedy, where the story is fueled by murder and mayhem."… Stephen Colbert will guest on the Halloween episode of The Office playing Broccoli Rob, who was in Andy's a-cappella group Here Come Treble when they attended Cornell together…NBC is developing an adaptation of the Vertigo comic books and graphic novels Midnight, Mass., about a married couple who work as paranormal investigators from their home in the small Massachusetts town of Midnight (see what they did there?). The couple are a hot, smart, and world traveling duo (start your dream casting now) and Evan Daugherty, who co-wrote Snow White and the Huntsman, will script the pilot. John Rozum, who created the comic, will serve as an executive consultant. This is actually the third time a TV version of these books has been in development, most recently in 2009, also at NBC…

Turns Out Not Where But Who You're With That Really Matters
(The Best of What's Around aka The Best Thing I've Watched In The Last 7 Days…)
Fans of The West Wing - like ME - are in nirvana this year as we've had not one but TWO mini-reunions…

The first a few months back via Funny or Die that extolled the virtues of walking…

And now this one, a public service announcement for voting as well as a campaign spot for Bridget Mary McCormack (sister of series regular Mary McCormack)…

I do miss The West Wing so and this has made that longing both better and worse!

People Say I'm Crazy Doing What I'm Doing. Well, They Give Me All Kinds Of Warnings To Save Me From Ruin
What's flashed before my eyes the last seven days…So we're five episodes into MTV's The Inbetweeners and I've enjoyed four of them quite a bit, which is a pretty good percentage. I know many readers keep pointing out to me that the show pales in comparison to the original and that very well might be true but here's the thing; I'm not watching the original, I'm watching this version, and I'm judging it on its own merits, which I think are solid…I liked Annie's coma dreams on Covert Affairs and even though the second attempt on her life was lazy and amateurish, especially for a CIA operative, I liked that they quickly dispersed with the idea that people might think she was a traitor…The darker Major Crimes goes, the more I enjoy it, and I must say that this is the best sustained showcase we've had for Provenza, who right now ranks on my list of Top 10 Current Favorite TV Characters…Week two of Sons of Anarchy was even better than week one if only for the great scenes of Jax and Nero driving around together; Jimmy Smits is one of the best and most natural actors in the industry and Kurt Sutter has given him a hell of a canvas to work with. Also loved watching Opie make his decision and put a plan in motion; in character and at the same time it's clear he's not giving up his anger, he's just putting it on the backburner. I am somewhat curious as the show already did a plotline where the boys were in jail so I am not sure what the show will do to make this story different, although I want to be clear in saying that I am sure they will make it different as I have the utmost confidence in the writers…Mrs. Tivo and I were watching The Voice on Monday and I turned to her and said, as a joke, "he's going to sing The Cupid Shuffle." Wow, the single worst decision I have seen on a singing competition show…Laura Innes guest spot on Warehouse 13 was another reminder that TV is a better place when she is a part of it. Her work on Awake last season was excellent and I can't think of a show that wouldn't be better from her presence…To me the difference between Go On and The New Normal is that the latter knows exactly what it is and what it is trying to be while the former seems to be worried about pleasing everyone rather than carving out a distinct point of view. Both are good but Go On is holding itself back while Normal seems to be really hitting its stride…The opening hour of Revolution didn't blow me away but it was more than entertaining enough to get a (temporary for now) season pass so I could see where it's going. I think striking the balance between plot twists and character development as they head off on their journey will be what makes or breaks the show. They actually removed a big plot twist from Monday's episode that had been in the original pilot and I am not sure if the writers have changed their minds or simply wanted to wait to play that card. Smart move either way as there were more than enough twisty moments in the episode…This week's Parenthood was amazing, with Ray Romano getting room to shine plus Monica Potter and Peter Krause showing their incredible talents via the wordless closing scene. I like the way that plot just happened with no foreshadowing, much in the same way those things happen in real life…This week's Top Chef Masters featured my all-time favorite challenge on any of the Top Chef shows, with the Masters having to instruct a team of two students from a culinary arts high school in making the dish. A true test to their Master status and one that produced remarkable results across the board…

TV Pick Of The Week
Obviously the pick is The Emmys on Sunday night but if you're looking for some counter programming options, the Patriots – Ravens game on NBC's Sunday Night Football is going to be quite the game, with two teams with much greater expectations for their seasons than their 1 – 1 records would demonstrate, each coming off of a very disappointing loss last week. This could be a VERY physical contest, especially if the replacement refs don't take control early.

Don't miss New England visiting Baltimore on Sunday Night Football, Sunday at 8:30pm on NBC.

Hope You Need My Love, Babe, Just Like I Need You
Most of the week's highlights are found in the season/series premieres above but here are a few other noteworthy viewing options from the next seven days…

*Even Jesse G, the biggest Notre Dame fan I know, is shocked they are 3-0 to start the season. The Fighting Irish look to run that record to 4 – 0 when they host the Michigan Wolverines on Saturday night at 7:30pm on NBC.

*Fashion Police airs a special Emmy recap episode Monday at 10pm on E!.

*Brickleberry (Tuesday, 10:30pm, Comedy Central) is a new animated comedy that counts Daniel Tosh as one of the executive producers.

*Top Chef Masters crowns a new champion this Wednesday at 10pm.

*Comedy Central has a big Wednesday night when South Park (10pm) and Key & Peele (10:30pm) return with new episodes.

*Louie (FX) brings season three to a close Thursday at 10pm with a holiday episode.

Two Tivos To Paradise
3 Days to Open with Bobby Flay, 24 Hour Restaurant Battle, 30 Rock, After the Catch, American Idol, Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations, Antiques Roadshow, Archer, Around the World in 80 Plate, Auction Hunters, Baby Daddy, The Big C, Boardwalk Empire, Being Human, Bent, Betty White's Off Their Rockers, Bones, Breaking Bad, Bunheads, Burn Notice, Cake Boss, Cake Boss: Next Great Baker, Chopped, Comic Book Men, Community, Cougar Town, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Deadliest Catch, Destination Truth, Don't Trust the B- in Apt 23, Fact or Faked, Falling Skies, Fairly Legal, Family Guy, Fast Food Mania, Flipping Out, Food Feuds, Food Network Challenge, Food Network Star, The Franchise, Ghost Hunters, Ghost Hunters Academy, Ghost Hunters International, Ghost Lab, Glee, Go On, Gossip Girl, Great Food Truck Race, Grey's Anatomy, Happy Endings, Haunted Highways, Haunted Treasure, Hawaii 5-0, Hell on Wheels, Hollywood Treasure, House of Lies, How I Met Your Mother, Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis, Iron Chef America, Justified, Key & Peele, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, Law And Order: Special Victims Unit, Longmire, Lost Girl, Louie, Mad Men, Major Crimes, Men at Work, The Middle, Mike and Molly, Modern Family, Monster Man, Necessary Roughness, New Girl, The New Normal, Next Iron Chef, The Office, Outside the Lines, Parks & Recreation, Private Practice, Project Accessory, Project Runway, PSYCH, Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook Off, Raising Hope, Real Time With Bill Maher, Restaurant Impossible, Revenge, Revolution, Royal Pains, Rules Of Engagement, Saturday Night Live, Shark Wranglers, Shear Genius, So You Think You Can Dance?, Sons of Anarchy, The Soup, Suits, Suburgatory, Supernatural, Texas Multi Mammas, Top Chef, Top Chef Just Desserts, Top Chef: Masters, Top Design, Tosh.0, True Blood, Up All Night, The Vampire Diaries, The Voice, The Walking Dead, Warehouse 13, Wilfred, Worst Cooks In America,

People Love You When They Know You're Leaving Soon
Here ends another Two Tivos To Paradise.

We'll be back next week with a review of The Emmys, a recap of a huge week of new programming, plus all the headlines from the last seven days!

Sources for this week's column include Daily Variety, Entertainment Weekly, TV Guide, and Hollywood Reporter (plus the web sites for those publications) as well as Aintit.cool.com, TVline.com & Deadline.com.


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