Hot Times, Summer in TV Land – What shows will YOU be watching during the “off-season?”


Hey!  Where did everybody go?

Remember when “original television programming,” during the summer season, meant nothing more than a bunch of lame ass game shows . . .

 . . . and mind-numbing reality series?

Well . . . it still does.

Fortunately, however, thanks to an increasing number of “pay” cable channels opting to provide their fans with original series ALL YEAR ROUND, summer television sucks a heck of a lot less than it did, say, five-years ago.

This morning, I was browsing through the online edition of Entertainment Weekly, when I came across this very cool article, which briefly summarized what television shows will be gracing our small screens this summer.  Based on this article, and some additional research on my part, I managed to compile a surprisingly full “Summer TV Watching Roster” for myself.  Here’s a list of the shows that made my “watch list.”

THE VETERANS, a.k.a shows that I’ve watched in the past, and think are AWESOME — Therefore, I will watch them again . . .

True Blood

Premieres Sunday, June 13th at 9pm on HBO.

This one sort of goes without saying, doesn’t it?  Particularly, since I have already been yammering on about the show on this blog, FOR WEEKS!  I mean, honestly, what could be better than a super raunchy, hilarious, and at-times very scary show, featuring all of the things I love best?  For the past two seasons it has been on the air, every SINGLE hour of True Blood has been jam packed with:

Shirtless Men;


Sex (sometimes, even ORGIES!);


Love triangles;

and people who talk with funny accents!  And if that hasn’t sold you yet, this BRAND NEW extended trailer definitely WILL . . .


Premieres Sunday, June 27th at 10:30 p.m. on HBO.

It’s hard to believe that this show is already heading into its SEVENTH SEASON!  It seems like only yesterday that “new hot young movie star” Vinnie Chase and his boys — uptight Eric, loveable loser Turtle, and dimwited has-been Johnny Drama — were making waves in the L.A. party scene, by bedding all the underage ladies, and pissing off all the celebrity guest stars. 

 Then again, maybe it WAS yesterday.  After all, one of the best things about Entourage is how comfortingly predictable it is.  Sure, Vinnie Chase is slightly less new and certainly less young than he was in early seasons.  And, yes,  his “hotness” as a character always tended to wax and wane, depending on what fake movie he was starring in, during a particular season (and how big his hair was at the time).  But other than that, most of the show’s episodes followed a pretty basic formula, and that formula WORKED! 

Basically, I think a lot of Entourage‘s long running success has to do with how well it caters to the basic male fantasy.  Seriously, what GUY wouldn’t want to do virtually nothing all day, but party with his friends and various celebrities (The latter usually drop in for cameos, playing exaggeratedly douchey versions of themselves).  And, yet, still be rich, successful, and highly oversexed?  Here is an example of a typical scene you might see during a run-of-the-mill episode of Entourage . . .

In conclusion, if you are a “dude,” or a girl who likes watching “dudes” do their thing on television, Entourage is the summer show for you!

Mad Men

Premieres Sunday, July 25th at 10 p.m. on AMC

A few months back, I wrote a blog entry that sort of functioned as unofficial tribute to all things Mad MenIt has been almost a year since this one-hour drama, set during the early 1960s, about the employees of a successful New York City advertising agency, graced my television set.  And yet, I STILL consider the show to be one of the best written and most intelligent programs on television today.  (ESPECIALLY since Lost and The Sopranos are no longer on TV . . .).

The show’s third season finale was just JAM PACKED with OMFG moments.  Most notably, both Sterling AND Cooper QUIT Sterling & Cooper (along with the show’s main protagonist, Don Draper, and MOST of the other series regulars on the show) to start their OWN AD AGENCY!


Wait a second . . . didn’t Sterling and Cooper ALREADY HAVE their own ad agency?  You know . . . the one that was NAMED after them!  Well . . . yes . . .  technically . . . But then this British ad agency came and bought them out.  Except, THAT agency ended up just wanting to . . . Well . . . maybe you should just Netflix Season 3, and see for yourself . . .

Oh, and did I mention that TV Super Couple, Don and Betty, are getting a divorce?

Or that I AM IN LOVE with Pete Campbell / Vincent Kartheiser?

Sorry . . . completely irrelevant, I know.  Sometimes, I just can’t help myself.

Having crafted a brilliant and unexpected Season 3 finale, it looks as though the Mad Men writers have laid the groundwork for what will undoubtedly be an exciting new season . . .

My Boys

Premieres, Sunday, July 25th at 10 pm on TBS (It looks like I’ll be taping this one . . .)

Television watching can’t be ALL DRAMA, ALL THE TIME, can it?  Especially during those hot summer months, I always like to throw a little light comedy into my TV watching schedule.  For the past three years, this little sitcom, about a twenty-something sports journalist from Chicago, and her rag tag gaggle of guy friends, has fit the bill just fine.  At the end of last season, P.J. tried to cope with her ex-boyfriend, Bobby’s upcoming marriage, by hooking up with Bobby’s older brother on the night of Bobby’s wedding. 

Sounds like a great idea, right?  And, perhaps, it would be, if Bobby didn’t walk in on the couple in flagrante, just as he was on the verge of telling P.J. that he still had feelings for HER!

My Boys may not be the most original sitcom out there, nor is it the funniest.  And yet, I’ve always found it enjoyable to watch.  Plus, TWO of P.J.’s “boys” are particularly easy on the eyes (Take a look at the cast pic above, and you will see exactly who I mean), which certainly doesn’t hurt . . .

THE ROOKIES, a.k.a. new shows I am willing to give the privilege of having a temporary slot on my TV-watching “dance card,” until they inevitably disappoint me with their suckiness . . .

The Gates

Premieres Sunday, June 20th at 10pm on ABC.


Interestingly enough, this show, about a snooty suburban community that just so happens to house residents with supernatural powers, was the only one on basic (non-pay) cable to make my Summer TV Watching list.  What can I say?   I’ve always been a “sucker” (pun intended) for a good vampire tale . . .


Premieres Friday, July 9th at 10pm on the SyFy

This “mystery-of-the week” type drama, created and produced by the same people who brought you The Dead Zone, has been described as “Twin Peaks meets the X-Files” ( says Entertainment Weekly), with a little bit of Fringe thrown in for good measure.  The show follows two FBI agents, as they investigate strange supernatural happenings (Are you noticing a pattern here?) occurring in a small town in Maine.  The program is purportedly based on a novella by Stephen King, entitled The Colorado Kid (as opposed to “The Maine Kid”?).

Stephen King tales tend to be genuinely spooky, with excellent plotting and great characterization to boot.  I’m hoping this series offers some of that as well.  Though I’m not generally a fan of horror, for whatever reason, I always find myself drawn to “scary” shows, during the summer months.   It looks like this summer will be no exception.  Plus, I like the fact that, unlike the other shows on my list, this show isn’t serialized.  So, if I have to miss an episode or two, I won’t be completely lost.

Melissa and Joey

Premieres Tuesday August 17th at 8pm on ABC Family

OK, I’m going to be completely honest here.  I’m pretty sure this show is gong to be AWFUL!  And yet, the little kid in me simply can’t resist the chance to see two of her favorite 90’s “teen idols” all-grown up, and starring in a show TOGETHER! 

Apparently, these two (Melissa Joan Hart and Joey Lawrence) starred in one of those lame made-for-tv movies, a little while back, and were such “a hit” together, that they decided to try for something a bit more permanent.  The sitcom is about a local politician (Hart) and a bankrupt Wall Street type (Lawrence), who end up living together.   Let the hilarity ensure!

Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a promo for this show anywhere on the internet.  So, in honor of Hart and Lawrence, I’ve decided to show you THESE instead . . .

A nice hefty helping of CHEESE with your blog!  You’re welcome!

So, there you have it, my Summer TV Watch list .  . . what’s on YOURS?




Filed under 90s television, Entourage, Mad Men, My Boys, Summer Television Shows, True Blood

9 responses to “Hot Times, Summer in TV Land – What shows will YOU be watching during the “off-season?”

  1. imaginarymen

    I am so excited for TB and THANK YOU for the great clips! But – BUT – WHERE IS HOYT?!?!?!?

    I will be very very disappointed if there’s no Hoyt. VERY disappointed.

    Never watch “Entourage” bc I have an irrational hatred of Kevin Connolly. Also – Piven steals those Emmy’s from NPH every damn year. (oh yeah, I’m a grudge holder!)

    I DVR’d “Pretty Little Liars” on ABCFam the other night – Haven’t watched it yet. It looks kinda cheesetastic:

    Mostly I just miss TVD and Parks & Rec!

    • You are absolutely right! I didn’t see Hoyt (Jim Parrack) in this promo at all! He also wasn’t present at Ausiello’s “Ultimate Fan Experience” Q & A (Neither was Nelsan Ellis / Lafayette, but they made up an excuse for him). Based on the promos, it seems like Vampire Jessica is going to be on her own for a lot of the Season, coping with her misdeeds from the Season 2 finale. Here’s hoping we AT LEAST get to see Hoyt pal around with Jason a bit throughout the season, and that Vampire Jessica and Hoyt reunite toward its end.

      By the way, have you watched the “Fan Experience” yet?

      It was interesting from a fangirl perspective, in that you got to see what the actors from the show are really like. (Ex. Ryan Kwanten is like a smart version of Jason Stackhouse, with the same childlike innocence, good heart, and good humor. The best of both worlds! Deborah Ann Woll is a total sweetheart, and comes across as very humble. Alex Skarsgaard is kind, but very serious. Stephen Moyer comes off as a bit snooty, in my opinion.)

      I think Ausiello developed a nice repoire with the cast, and asked some good questions. Unfortunately, nothing much was revealed. I’d be interested in your thoughts on it, if you happen to have 45 minutes to spare to watch it.

      LOL re: your “irrational hatred of Kevin Connolly” and your dislike of “The Piv.” Unlike other shows, including TVD and True Blood, I never got a real warm / friendly vibe from the Entourage cast. Except maybe from Turtle (Jerry Ferrara) . . . he’s just adorable! 🙂

      Ooh! Thanks for the Pretty Little Liars clip! I was thinking of adding that show to my summer watch list too! But then I missed the first week, and thought that ship had sailed. I like two of the actresses in it (Lucy Hale and Ashley Benson) very much, and am happy to see them working regularly. Plus, did you know the show is based on a multi-book young adult series? (I just read the whole synopsis on Wikipedia, after watching your video. I think I know how it ends now . . . 😉 )

      I really like when they base TV shows on books (cough TVD, True Blood, cough). When it comes to movies made from books, the book is almost universally better. But that’s not always the case with TV shows. Unlike a movie, a TV series has more time to delve into the more complex, character-related aspects of a book. Hmmm, I wonder if I can get my hands on the Pretty Little Liars series . . . 🙂

      So, just True Blood and Pretty Little Liars on your TV Watch list? We need to fatten up that roster pronto! How else will you survive this Salvatore-less summer, without plenty of distractions? 😉

      • imaginarymen

        Oh I have a HUGE distraction named Brandon Flowers!! Waiting for his single, waiting for his album, waiting for his tour dates. He’s sort of my second (unpaid) FT job ;-p

        But for TV I’m going to finally watch “Firefly” and try to get through some stuff on the Netflix queue. I’m not a big repeats fan and I am pretty picky about committing to a new show. I’m not even sure I’m “going steady” w/ PLL yet!

        (now I am VERY worried about Hoyt!! I’ll trade some damn werewolves for Hoyt back!)

  2. Pingback: Dead Girls Who Text, Underage Sex, Kind of Perplexed – A First Look at ABC Family’s “Pretty Little Liars” « TV Recappers Anonymous

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  4. Pingback: TV Shows I’m watching now that it’s the “off-season” « The Diplomatic Wife

  5. Here’s my list!

    I totally agree with the stuff you said about Entourage & True Blood by the way, so I linked it back to your post!

    • Hey diplomaticwife! Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting, and for the pingback! I also appreciate your directing me to YOUR fabulous blog. Good stuff!

      Apparently, great minds think alike (AND have really good taste ;)), because you and I watch a lot of the same television shows both “on” and “off” season. Like you, I am also a Gossip Girl and Grey’s fan. I actually do recaps of both programs here, so feel free to stop by during their respective seasons if you ever want to snark :).

      And not only do we both watch True Blood and Entourage (although admittedly, I’m a bit behind on the latter), but I also ultimately picked up Pretty Little Liars, instead of some of the other new shows I listed in this post! That show is so bad, it’s good, right? Not to mention, it’s AMAZINGLY popular for an ABC Family show. . .

      We are practically TV Twins! 🙂

  6. Pingback: TV Shows I’m watching now that it’s the “off-season”

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