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Place your bets on Quaid's 'Vegas'

Courtesy photo
In "Vegas," Dennis Quaid is Ralph Lamb, the real-life "cowboy sheriff" of Las Vegas in the '60s. The show, from the writer of "Goodfellas" and "Casino," premieres at 10 p.m. Tuesday on CBS. Quaid's co-stars are Jason O'Mara (left) and Taylor Handley (right). Michael Chiklis plays the bad guy.

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The fall season kicks into high gear Monday, with ABC and CBS joining the fray. While I'm most excited for returning shows this week ("Parks and Recreation," "Up All Night," "Hawaii Five-0"), I'll also be tuning into the five new shows premiering.

They are:

  • "Partners": 8:30 p.m. Monday, CBS. I want to like this gay/straight BFF sitcom because it has Michael Urie ("Ugly Betty's" Marc) and Brandon Routh (who I really liked in his stint on "Chuck"), but it looks absolutely awful. The show comes from the creators of "Will & Grace," and it's like a lesser version of that. Urie is the flamboyantly gay Jack; Routh, his boyfriend, would be Will; David Krumholtz ("Numb3rs"), his neurotic best friend, is Grace. The fourth main character, Krumholtz's fiancée (Sophia Bush, "One Tree Hill"), isn't Karen, but the guys' cliched sassy Latina secretary has her attitude.
  • "Ben and Kate": 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Fox. Having moved "Glee" to Thursday, Fox is trying an all-comedy night Tuesdays. This sibling sitcom is the first of two newbies. It's paired with another dysfunctional family sitcom, "Raising Hope" (returning next week), which I think will be a good fit.
  • "Hope" has an emphasis on crazy comedy, with a layer of sweetness underneath. "Ben and Kate" seems to try to balance the two equally, so even though I didn't find the humor in the previews all that funny, I was drawn in by the sweetness and the charming Dakota Johnson, who plays Kate.

  • "The Mindy Project": 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, Fox. Mindy Kaling's titular sitcom about a doctor with a disastrous personal life is the second newbie. I know people who are fans of Kaling from "The Office" and are really looking forward to this, but having never seen her on that, I don't get the excitement. It's not that this looks awful; it just looks inane.
  • "Vegas": 10 p.m. Tuesday, CBS. This is one of the new shows I'm really looking forward to. Dennis Quaid stars as Ralph Lamb, the real-life "cowboy sheriff" of Las Vegas in the '60s, and Michael Chiklis is his formidable mobster foe.
  • The previews look top-notch, with production values reminding me more of a film than a TV show. That's no surprise since there are some big guns from the big screen behind the camera: writer Nicholas Pileggi ("Goodfellas," "Casino") and director -- at least for the pilot -- James Mangold ("3:10 to Yuma," "Walk the Line").

  • "The Neighbors": 9:30 p.m. Wednesday, ABC. Since ABC has decided to try a Tuesday comedy night and relocated "Happy Endings" and "Don't Trust the B-- in Apt. 23" there (starting in late October), this aliens-in-suburbia sitcom steps into the opening they left. The previews aren't funny, but I'm hoping things might not be as bad as they seem.
  • The show comes from Dan Fogelman, whose writing credits include "Crazy, Stupid, Love." as well as the animated hits "Cars," "Tangled" and "Bolt." Also, it stars Jami Gertz, who I enjoyed on "Still Standing," and Lenny Venito, who was on the criminally short-lived "Knights of Prosperity."

    • • •

    FIRST IMPRESSIONS

    "The Mob Doctor": This medical procedural seems like it should be on CBS or TNT. It's safe and nonthreatening, like comfort food. The only difference between it and other hospital dramas is the main character has a more interesting personal life than other doctors. (9 p.m. Monday, Fox)

    "Guys with Kids": It's not particularly good to begin with, and it's made nearly intolerable by Anthony Anderson as a stay-at-home dad of four and Erinn Hayes as an overbearing, crazy ex-wife. The only decent character is Zach Cregger's father of two, who's a big kid himself. (8:30 p.m. Wednesday, NBC)

    • • •

    NETWORK SEASON PREMIERES

    NBC: "Up All Night," 8:30 p.m., "The Office," 9 p.m. and "Parks and Recreation," 9:30 p.m. Thursday; "Law & Order: SVU," 9 p.m. Timeslot premieres: "Animal Practice," 8 p.m., and "Guys with Kids," 8:30 p.m. Wednesday.

    ABC: "Dancing with the Stars," 8 p.m. (all-star edition) and "Castle," 10 p.m. Monday; "Private Practice," 10 p.m. Tuesday; "The Middle," 8 p.m. and "Modern Family," 9 p.m. Wednesday.

    CBS: "How I Met Your Mother," 8 p.m., "2 Broke Girls," 9 p.m., "Mike & Molly," 9:30 p.m. and "Hawaii Five-0," 10 p.m. Monday; "NCIS," 8 p.m. and "NCIS: Los Angeles," 9 p.m. Tuesday; "Criminal Minds," 9 p.m. and "CSI," 10 p.m. Wednesday.

    Fox: "New Girl," 8 p.m. Tuesday, Fox (second episode at 9 p.m.).

    • • •

    Series premieres: "Bling It On," 10 p.m. Thursday, TLC (over-the-top dresses); "Prom Queens," 10:30 p.m. Thursday, Lifetime (girls vie for the title); "Secret Princes," 10 p.m. Friday, TLC (bachelor royalty search for love); "Brickleberry," 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, Comedy Central (animated adventures of inept forest rangers).

    Season premieres: "Haven," 10 p.m. Friday, Syfy (season two marathon begins at 8 a.m.); "Key & Peele," 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, Comedy Central.

    Returning: "Victorious," 8 p.m. (end of final season), "Big Time Rush," 8:30 p.m. and "How to Rock," 9 p.m. Saturday, Nick; "Tosh.0," 10 p.m. Tuesday and "South Park," 10 p.m. Wednesday, Comedy Central.

    Season finales: "Braxton Family Values," 9 p.m. Thursday, WE; "Awkward," 10 p.m. Thursday, MTV; "Ice Road Truckers," 10 p.m. Sunday, History; "The L.A. Complex," 8 p.m. Monday, CW; "Here Comes Honey Boo Boo," 8 p.m. Wednesday, TLC; "Top Chef Masters," 10 p.m. Wednesday, Bravo.

    Specials: "SNL Primetime Election Special," 8 p.m. Thursday, NBC; "ALMA Awards," 8 p.m. Friday, NBC (honoring Hispanic entertainment achievements); "Emmy Awards," 8 p.m. Sunday, ABC (red carpet coverage at 7 p.m.); "Revenge: The First Chapter," 10 p.m. Wednesday, ABC (season one recap).

    Reach Amy Robinson at flipside@wvgazette.com.


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