Back to school, hunting season, the first football kickoff: These are all signs that the rich orange, red and yellow colors of fall are about to wrap their bony fingers around the sunny days of summer and squeeze the life out of them. And that means another symbol of the changing seasons will soon appear: the premieres of fall television shows.
Starting on Tuesday, Sept. 6, network and cable channels will reach down and give a hand to the viewers they left hanging off the cliff at the end of spring. Sons of Anarchy (FX, Tuesdays) will return for another nail-biting season of watching SAMCRO try to keep rival bike gangs at bay while trying to keep their families from falling apart. Thursdays will give television's reputation a bump up when edgily hilarious Archer (FX), lowest-common-denominator hilarious It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia (FX) and charmingly hilarious Parks and Recreation (NBC) return. TV will need that boost because, also on Thursdays, Annie Ilonzeh, Minka Kelly and Rachael Taylor (who?) star in the premiere of the Charlie's Angels (ABC) reboot. Speaking of a boot, Two-And-A-Half Men (CBS, Mondays) did not get one and returns with Ashton Kutcher playing opposite the guy who was in an '80s coming-of-age movie with Molly Ringwald.
Blue Bloods (CBS, Fridays), Kitchen Nightmares (FOX, Fridays) and Modern Family (ABC, Wednesdays) return with entertaining if not exactly provocative viewing options, and the return of Boardwalk Empire (HBO) will be the meat in a Sunday sandwich layered high with both the prime and cut-rate ingredients of The Good Wife (CBS), Family Guy (FOX), Pan Am (ABC), Desperate Housewives (ABC), The Simpsons (FOX), American Dad (FOX) and CSI: Miami (CBS). You decide which is which. The NFL Kickoff Sunday Night Football airs on Thursday, Sept. 8 (NBC), and if that isn't enough violence for you, on Tuesdays, you can watch new seasons of Glee (FOX) and The Biggest Loser (NBC).