×

Our Staff Picks: TV Shows to Watch the Week of Sept. 19, 2016

Introducing Tune In: our new weekly newsletter, offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV.

Each week, Variety’s TV team will be combing through the week’s TV schedule, selecting our picks. We’ll tell readers what to watch and when/how to watch it. This week, we’re kicking off with a schedule that’s packed with fall premieres.

The Voice,” NBC, Monday, 8 p.m.

Emmy winner “The Voice” returns with Season 11, starting off with everyone’s favorite segment: the blind auditions. This time around, new coaches Miley Cyrus and Alicia Keys will be spinning around in the red chairs.

The Good Place,” NBC, Monday, 10 p.m.

Mike Schur is back at NBC with his latest comedy — but will it be the next “Parks and Recreation”? If anyone can create a hit, it’s the star-studded duo of Ted Danson and Kristen Bell.

This Is Us,” NBC, Tuesday, 10 p.m.

If you miss “Parenthood,” you may want to tune into “This Is Us.” Just try to get through Dan Fogelman’s family drama without shedding a tear — thanks to the winning performances of of Milo Ventimiglia, Mandy Moore, Justin Hartley, Chrissy Metz and newly minted Emmy nominee Sterling K. Brown, as characters whose lives intersect in a compelling storyline.

Speechless,” ABC, Wednesday, 8:30 p.m. (CRITICS PICK)

ABC’s success with family comedies continues with “Speechless,” a good example of how a willingness to explore challenging topics, when united with crisp commercial instincts and warmhearted compassion, can produce admirable results. The headline about “Speechless” is that one of its characters is disabled, but the show gleefully avoids being treacly or sentimental. From the outset, it treats teenager J.J. DiMeo (Micah Fowler) as a multifaceted character who has flaws and likable qualities, just like everyone else in his fractious, loving family of five. If it sustains the quality of its terrific pilot, “Speechless” is likely to emerge as the best new broadcast network comedy of the year.

Designated Survivor,” ABC, Wednesday, 10 p.m.

Kiefer Sutherland is back in his action-star element, following his iconic turn in “24.” This time, he toplines ABC’s political drama, in which he’s appointed President of the United States after an attack on Washington, D.C. wipes out the entire Cabinet. Variety’s Sonia Saraiya says the thriller is “one of the highest-quality pilots broadcast is offering this fall.”

Pitch,” Fox, Thursday, 9 p.m.

Fox is taking a big swing with the baseball bat in the new female-led drama, which showcases the talents of breakout star Kylie Bunbury, who stars as the first woman to play in the Major Leagues. Variety critic Maureen Ryan calls it “one of the year’s most assured and exciting debuts.”

Transparent,” Amazon, Friday 

The third season of the critically-acclaimed Amazon series launches just days after the Emmys, which saw Jeffrey Tambor nab a repeat win as lead actor in a comedy. Season 3 welcomes guest star Caitlyn Jenner, who will appear in a dream sequence, creator Jill Soloway revealed to Variety in a recent interview.

More TV

  • ‘Big Brother’ Set for German Comeback

    ‘Big Brother’ Set for German Comeback on Sat.1

    “Big Brother” is returning to German screens after a five-year break. Sat.1 will air the German version of the show, which will coincide with the 20th anniversary of the Endemol format that paved the way for a raft of other unscripted shows around the world. Sat.1 said it would also run a celebrity version of [...]

  • ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ Gets

    ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ Gets Reboot by PBS, Viacom’s Channel 5

    A new adaptation of “All Creatures Great and Small” is in the works for Viacom’s Channel 5 in the U.K. and Masterpiece on PBS in the U.S. The source books by James Herriot, about country veterinarians in 1930s rural England, were made into a much-loved 1978-90 British series that ran to 90 episodes, which also [...]

  • THE F WORD WITH GORDON RAMSAY:

    Viacom Adds Pluto TV Drama, Food, and Movies to Channel 5’s On-Demand Service

    Viacom is adding a trio of channels from its recently-acquired Pluto TV to My5, the on-demand service of Channel 5, the U.K. free-to-air broadcaster it also owns. Ad-supported OTT service Pluto TV is already available in the U.K., but the My5 deal widens its distribution. It also bulks up My5 at a time when traditional [...]

  • Whoopi Goldberg addresses the crowd while

    Inside World Pride's Opening Ceremony: An LGBTQ Celebration With a Tinge of Politics

    World Pride officially kicked off on Wednesday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. About 8,000 people packed into the arena for a three-hour show that began with Cyndi Lauper singing her hit “True Colors.” The performance ended with a gaggle of dancing drag queens who pranced alongside Lauper as she turned the train of [...]

  • Democratic presidential candidate Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth

    The Messy NBC Democratic Debate Proves the Need for a Tier System (Column)

    The opening night of the first debates of the 2020 Democratic Party primaries brought — even by the standards of such way-far-out confrontations between candidates for whom the election remains a far-off dream — vastly more empty drama than new information. But then, that may have been by design. NBC News’s organization of the debates, [...]

  • Max Wright Dead

    'Alf' Actor Max Wright Dies at 75

    Max Wright, best known for playing patriarch Willie Tanner on the sitcom “Alf,” died Wednesday. He was 75. Wright’s family confirmed his death to TMZ. The actor died in his home in Hermosa Beach, Calif., after years of battling cancer. Wright was diagnosed with Lymphona in 1995. Wright is most famous for his role as [...]

  • Greyson Chance -Gabby Barrett Alejandro Aranda

    Greyson Chance, 'Idol' Alums Gabby Barrett and Alejandro Aranda Sign Major Label Deals

    Two “American Idol” alumni — Gabby Barrett and Alejandro Aranda — as well as viral star Greyson Chance all announced new major label recording contracts this week. Barrett, who finished in third place of the first season of the rebooted ABC version of “Idol,” has joined the roster of Warner Music Nashville. The singer had [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content