The TV networks have tons of new shows ready for this coming TV season. There are lots of political dramas of course (everyone wants the next “Scandal”) and of course there are many familiar faces these shows have recruited to help get you to watch their shows. Here are the best and worst stars you should know are coming to TV (or coming back) and our grade of excitement.
Katherine Heigl and Alfre Woodard (NBC’s “State of Affairs”)
Izzie and Betty Applewhite are back for more TV time… though far away from Seattle Grace and Wisteria Lane this time around (Sayonara ABC!)
Is America ready to forgive Katherine Heigl? As for Woodard, this might be the first African-American female president on a major TV show. That at least sounds better than her ridiculous role in “Desperate Housewives.”
Level of excitement: 8 (We’re still not over Heigl’s bad behavior, but it’s a good start pairing her up with a class act like Alfre Woodard!)
Katharine McPhee (CBS’ “Scorpion”)
She was the runner-up on FOX’s Idol, the star of NBC’s “SMASH.” Now CBS is the one determined to make KAT MAC a star. Will this happen for her or do we need to wait for ABC to give it a go?
Level of excitement: A (We’re just happy it’s not Taylor Hicks getting all these shows)
Mathew Perry (CBS’ “The Odd Couple”)
Chandler has had 3 shows make it to series after “Friends” went off the air 10 years ago. You know what they say, 4th time is the charm? To be fair “Go On” was better than “Mr. Sunshine” which was better than “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip,” so there’s hope. Also in Perry’s favor, this time his show is on CBS, the #1 network!
Level of excitement: 2 (It feels like CBS is grooming this as a “Two and a Half Men” replacement and we don’t really need another one of those, do we?)
Tea Leoni (CBS’ “Madam Secretary”)
Remember Tea Leoni? She was in the other asteroid movie (“Deep Impact”) and she was married to David Duchovny for quite a while. Once upon a time, she also had a sitcom (“The Naked Truth.”) In any case, TV execs think she looks just like Hillary Clinton apparently, so they cast her as secretary of state in an upcoming drama. Bill Clinton probably wouldn’t mind making that mistake.
Level of excitement: 4 (If anyone was to play Hillary, we were kind of hoping for Meryl Streep or Amy Poehler)
Halle Berry (CBS’ “Extant”)
Oscar winner Halle Berry is coming to TV! Can you blame her? There are just so many X-Men and women-in-peril movies out there and she’s got kids to feed (and Olivier Martinez!)
Level of excitement: 3. We just can’t get over that title, but the premise sounds somewhat intriguing (she might be expecting an alien baby!) and Halle just keeps getting hotter.
Josh Duhamel (CBS’ Battle Creek)
He wasn’t wanted in the new Transformers movies, so Josh Duhamel thought it was time come back to TV. (Remember NBC’s “Las Vegas?” That ran for 5 seasons, 5!) No idea what this show is about, Kal Penn (not pictured) is also in it (guess he’s done working for Obama!).
Level of excitement: 5 (We are torn. This is from the same creator as “Breaking Bad” but just don’t see how Josh can measure up to Bryan Cranston)
Joey McIntyre and Laurie Metcalf (CBS’ The McCarthys)
She kills it every time she shows up on “The Big Bang Theory,” so it’s not a surprise CBS is giving Laurie Metcalf a regular gig on their network. As for New Kids on the Block’s Joey Joe, what is CBS thinking? They already got a NKOTB on Fridays (Donnie Wahlberg is one of the stars of “Blue Bloods”) and that’s working out pretty well, so why not hire another one?
Bonus information: Tyler Ritter also stars on this show. He is John Ritter’s other son. He might look super familiar, because his brother, Jason Ritter keeps popping up on shows that don’t last very long (“The Event,” “Joan of Arcadia,” “The Class,” and this past season “Us vs. Them” was picked but has yet to air one single episode). We hope Tyler has more luck!
Level of excitement: 7 (It’s the only new comedy CBS is premiering in the fall, so it can’t be that bad, can it?)
Cristin Milioti and Ben Feldman (NBC’s “A to Z”)
The MOTHER is alive! “How I Met Your Mother’s” Cristin Milioti falls in love with Ginsberg from “Mad Men.” Looking at the trailer, it might be a very short-lived resurrection for the mother. Even if it just lasts 6 episodes, we hope it ends on happier note than HIMYM.
(You never watched “Mad Men” or “HIMYM” but both actors look super familiar? We’re here to help! She was Leonardo DiCaprio’s first wife in “Wolf of Wall Street” and he was the original guardian angel on “Drop Dead Diva.” You’re welcome!)
Rainn Wilson (FOX’ “Backstrom”)
Dwight from “The Office” gets to play an “overweight, offensive, irascible” detective who is engaged in a constant struggle with his “self-destructive” tendencies, and is part of a team of eccentric criminologists. So it’s another anti-hero drama, though we’re guessing a kind of funny one, or why else hire Wilson?
Level of excitement: 2 (but we’ll raise it to a 6 if his new character also love bears, beets and Battlestar Galactica?
AND MANY MANY MORE…
Not enough stars for you. Here are some of the other stars that scored a regular gig on network TV this coming season:
The guy that let Reese Whiterspoon go, Ryan Phillippe and Juliette Lewis take a break from being movie stars for ABC’s “Secrets and Lies.”
Dave Annable, the younger brother in “Brothers and Sisters” helps bring Oscar winner Octavia Spencer to TV with FOX’s “Red Band Society”
Loved “The Help?” You are in luck! Academy Award nominee Viola Davis is also getting a show: ABC’s Shonda Rhimes’ “How to Get Away With Murder.” Considering this is Shonda’s third show on the network, it might as well be Shonda Rhimes’ ABC.
Anthony Anderson and Laurence Fishburne will star on ABC’s “Black-ish.” We’re hoping they change the name of the show, but excited to see Anderson back on TV. Could this be the next Cosby show? Tracie Ellis Ross known for “Girlfriends” and from being Diana Ross’ daughter plays Anderson’s wife.
Heroes’ Milo Ventimiglia has yet to get an invitation to join the “Heroes” reboot, but he doesn’t care. He’s got a new show called “The Whispers” on ABC.
Desperate Housewife Felicity Huffman is back on ABC, this time with a show called “American Crime.” We’re guessing not many laughs in this one.
Scott Bakula will star on “NCIS: New Orleans.” We wish he’d Quantum Leap back to do something else instead.
If you know Spanish telenovelas, you’ll be excited to see Jaime Camil on The CW’s “Jane the Virgin” and Carlos Ponce on ABC’s “Cristela.” If you’re not familiar with them, just take our word, they are both pretty hot.
“Gotham’s” stars Ben McKenzie (Welcome back to the F-O-X, bitch!) and Jada Pinkett Smith. Wait, does this mean “Southland” and “Hawthorne” were cancelled? Wait, that was that 3 years ago?!
More Academy Award nominees are coming to TV! FOX’s “Empire” has Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson. This is supposed to be like “Nashville” but for Hip Hop music (and hopefully better.)
And last but not least, Grace Adler is back! Let’s all pretend “The Starter Wife” and “Smash” didn’t happen. Debra Messing will be back on NBC’s “Mysteries of Laura.” It’s about a woman that is a mom and a detective… that sounds original?
Are you excited to see all these stars on TV? Which one has you the most excited?