I went through three more screeners for you last night, and I think I can save you a few viewing hours for the upcoming season.
Of the three, the best of the lot was ABC's "The Neighbors," which stars Jami Gertz and Lenny Venito as the world's most average family buying a house in a development where every one of their neighbors is an alien, including the leaders played by Simon Templeman and Toks Olagundoye.
Unlike "3rd Rock From The Sun," which was mostly about alien observations of human life, "The Neighbors" focuses more on different customs between the two races.
I'll admit, I laughed a few times in the first couple of episodes I saw, but I don't know how much life there is in the overall concept, which seems to be a one-note joke.
However, the show was better than the two CBS offerings I watched.
The sitcom "Partners" seems to have omitted the "com" part of the equation. David Krumholtz and Michael Urie as best friends and business partners. The former is straight, and can't seem to decide on what to do with his relationship with his girlfriend (Sophia Bush). The latter is gay, and while he's in a stable relationship with his partner (Brandon Routh), he's always managing to cause trouble for everyone.
It's from the creators of "Will & Grace," and it seems to be going for the exact same vibe. There was really nothing new or clever here which the viewer hasn't seen 1,000 times before. Of course, I gave a similar negative review last year to "Two Broke Girls," and it's one of CBS' biggest hits, so what do I know?
I was more disappointed with "Made In Jersey," which seems to be a cross between the movie "Working Girl" and "The Good Wife," but not nearly as good as either. Janet Montgomery plays Martina, a working class woman trying to cut it in a high-class law firm, headed by Kyle MacLachlan. Thanks to her knowledge of things like hairspray and tight dresses, she manages to help work her way onto her firm's big cases.
The producers are definitely trying for a "Good Wife" vibe, but here's the problem: They've missed what makes that show so great. They're so intent on making Martina look smart despite her background that the rest of the firm comes off as incompetent (except for MacLachlan, who seems disinteresed for the first three quarters). The leaps Martina makes to try to solve the case seem unlikely at best.
"Good Wife" is great because while Alicia is smart, she also makes mistakes and also manages to learn from other smart people, namely the rest of the cast. She has to be at the top of her game just to survive in that world. In "Jersey," we wonder why Martina would want to be in that world.
WEEKEND'S BEST BETS: OK, the networks start rolling out the new series next week, so this is your last weekend where all of the good stuff is only on cable.
Tonight has new editions of "Boss" (STARZ, 10 p.m.) and "Strike Back" (MAX, 10 p.m.). All of the broadcast channels will be airing the telethon, "Stand Up To Cancer," which includes a lineup of Gwyneth Paltrow, Julia Roberts and Matt Damon. Lucy Lawless will pay tribute to her "Spartacus" co-star Andy Whitfield, who died from cancer earlier this year.
On Saturday, the title of this week's "Doctor Who" (BBC America, 9 p.m.) is "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship." Need I say more? OK, a little more, as two "Harry Potter" familiar faces guest star.
There's also a plethora of college football, including UGA at Missouri (ESPN2, 7:45 p.m.)
On Sunday, I'll be mourning the loss of "Breaking Bad" for the next several months. AMC's "Hell On Wheels" continues at 9 p.m., as does "Leverage" (TNT, 9 p.m.)
BBC America continues with "Copper" at 10 p.m. Speaking of mysteries, PBS begins a new season of "Wallander" (PBS, 9 p.m.) on "Masterpiece Mystery."
Showtime airs new episodes of "Weeds" and "Web Therapy" from 10-11 p.m.