Between suspenseful sudsers, sexy men in uniform, and sisters doing it for themselves, the broadcast networks’ 2012-2013 television schedule looks pretty promising. Here’s all the scoop on the shows you’ll want to check out:
It’s Raining Men
There’s just something about a man in uniform... Andre Braugher (Homicide) and Scott Speedman (Felicity’s Ben! TV has missed you!) cut fine figures in Last Resort (ABC, Thursdays at 8) as they lead a US Naval submarine crew on a rogue mission after they receive a suspicious order from the government. This tense thriller from co-creator Shawn Ryan (The Shield, Chicago Code) features plenty of pretty in the familiar sprawling ensemble—including Dichen Lachman, Daisy Betts, Autumn Reeser, Daniel Lissing, Robert Patrick and more—but the tightly plotted, action-packed twisty plot is the real stunner here. You’ll think you’re watching a big screen blockbuster not just a weekly TV drama.
Even better than a hunk in uniform? A hunk out of one! The trailer for the new NBC drama Chicago Fire certainly agrees as the delicious Taylor Kinney (The Vampire Diaries, Trauma) is shirtless for the entire sneak peek clip. He leads a team of equally sexy firefighters and paramedics as they fight fires—and each other—in the latest high stakes Dick Wolf production. Jesse Spencer (House) and Eamonn Walker (The Messenger) also star.
Nobody rocks a uniform like a superhero though. Arrow (CW, Wednesdays at 8 pm) will be shooting his way into hearts as playboy Oliver Queen returns home to Starling City (no, not Smallville this time around) after a tragedy and becomes a secret nighttime vigilante, who vows to make amends and restore the city to its former glory. Stephen Amell (Private Practice, Hung) fills out the green leather quite impressively, and looks just as good without it in the sneak peek clip as he strong-arms his way through a sweaty workout in a rundown factory that would make Kevin Bacon proud. (Okay, and maybe a little ashamed.)
Beauty and the Beast (CW, Thursdays at 9) is a time-honored fable, re-told again and again over the years. Still, we’d bet good money that there’s never been a Beast with quite such chiseled cheekbones in any of the previous incarnations. This new drama, which supposedly remakes the popular ’90s TV version with Linda Hamilton and Ron Perelman (though the script bore almost no resemblance besides the characters’ first names), casts handsome Jay Ryan (Terra Nova) as the titular monster. Luckily for us, and his love interest/soulmate, investigative reporter Catherine Chandler (Smallville’s Kristin Kreuk), his ugly side only comes to light when he gets ragey. BEAST SMASH!
All the Single Ladies
The men don’t get to have all the fun, though. In the Grey’s Anatomy-esque medical drama Emily Owens, MD (CW, Tuesdays at 9) Mamie (daughter of Streep!) Gummer plays a new resident at Denver Memorial who discovers hospitals aren’t that different from high school. While she blushes over her friend and secret crush Will (the droolworthy Justin Hartley), her biggest high school rival also joins the staff and just might sweep him out from under her scalpel. Jack Coleman (Heroes, The Vampire Diaries) also recurs as the hospital chief of staff with some down and dirty secrets.
Doctors may have drama, but they also can bring the funny. At least when it comes to The Office’s Mindy Kaling, who created and stars in the season’s most anticipated new sitcom, The Mindy Project (Fox, Tuesdays at 9:30). A professional success and a personal mess, Dr. Mindy Lahiri is a multi-tasker, getting arrested for disorderly conduct one minute, delivering a baby the next. She also juggles two hot love interests, bad boy Jeremy (British comedian Ed Weeks) who shares her practice (and occasionally her mattress!) and the infuriating Danny (Damages’ Chris Messina) whom she argues with about EVERYTHING. And we all know what that means... Messy as Mindy’s life may be, this sitcom seems smart and snappy, especially with an assist from Kaling’s Office bud BJ Novak co-executive producing.
Take a trip back to the land of neon legwarmers and lace headbands with the CW’s Sex and the City prequel, The Carrie Diaries (Midseason - Mondays at 9). Budding film actress AnnaSophia Robb stars as a 16-year-old Carrie Bradshaw and if you think teen dramas can’t bring the sexy just as well as their adult counterparts....well, you definitely haven’t watched The Vampire Diaries then, have you? But despite a sexy new transfer student catching her, this Carrie has more than men on her mind—she’s taking Manhattan as a law firm intern by day and a club-hopping cutie by night.
Soap, Sex, & Shenanigans
With a title as blatant as Mistresses (ABC, airing in May 2013), you know we’re in for some sexy and scandalous misadventures. Will the salacious daily doings of four female friends (including Alyssa Milano and Lost’s Yunjin Kim) fill the Desperate Housewives-shaped hole in our hearts? It remains to be seen, but with secret affairs and breathless betrayals in abundance, this midseason drama should be worth the wait.
The heart of country music land, Nashville (ABC, Wednesdays at 10) is the backdrop for this sudser featuring the always-fabulous Connie Britton (Friday Night Lights’ Tami Taylor, y’all) as a fading star whose queendom is being usurped by a conniving up-and-comer (Heroes’ Hayden Panettiere) faster than you can say Country Strong. There’s plenty of ballads, backstabbing and bedhopping in this one, plus a wealth of sexy men and ‘ships to choose from. And really, who doesn’t want to see Tami Taylor getting her Faith Hill on? That’s just plain crazy talk now, y’hear.
Tired of that sugarcoated Southern charm? Try some upper-crust underhandedness with the Revenge-esque family drama Infamous (NBC, Midseason). Detective Joanna Locasto (Meagan Good) goes spy amongst the blue-blooded Bowers clan to determine who killed her estranged childhood best friend, heiress Vivian. But the waters of her investigation get muddied as she’s torn between her sexy cop partner Will (Laz Alonzo) and golden boy Julian Bowers (TBA, as role is being recast). For added pleasure, Victor Garber (Alias’s SpyDaddy!) and Tate Donovan also star.
Tara Gelsomino is a reader, writer, pop culture junkie, and internet addict. You can tweet her at @taragel.