Back in August, I made a list of the top 10 television shows I was looking forward to the most. That list can be found here. With the fall season just about complete (and 2012 as well), I figured it prudent to post an overview of my observations of this season’s offerings. We’ll look at the ten listed shows and I’ll add in a few other new shows that I found absorbing or wanted to comment on:

10. 666 Park Avenue – This series had such promise. I watched the first five episodes but then couldn’t muster up the desire to watch the rest of the episodes I had stored up. When ABC finally cancelled the series, I simply deleted the rest of the episodes that had lived on my DVR. It did well, but not well enough to stick around. Perhaps if it had sped up the storyline, then it’d still be around. In any case, this wasn’t a good result for imaginative dramas that just needed better timing and pace. Oh well.

9. 2 Broke Girls – It’s been an up and down season, but overall, mildly amusing and always a solid choice. Watched every episode within a couple of days of airing. Solid choice on my DVR and I’m glad to see it get another season. It’s earned a permanent ticket to my schedule.

8. How I Met Your Mother – Certainly has put up a solid season. Wonderful to see Robin and Barney get together, with a touching proposal episode that was completely in the vein of Barney’s character. Could’ve done without the Seth Green episode though. That one was complete filler, and a bone thrown to fans of Buffy‘s later seasons. Can’t wait to see the rest of the season after it returns in the spring.

7. The Mentalist – Has begun a downhill slide. Episodes have begun piling up in our DVR, unwatched. Mainly because we got some answers without anything being answered. Has gotten a bit rote, repetitive, and frustrating for us. But we’ll soldier on, since we have already invested so much into this show already.

6. Revolution – This show has been absolutely thrilling from start to finish. Became one of the few shows I would actually watch live if I was available and awake. Highly recommended and I am absolutely thrilled that it got renewed, since it’s the type of show that normally would only get a one-season run, if even that (see Firefly, Terra Nova, et al.). If you’ve missed out on the Revolution, hop onto the bandwagon!

5. Revenge – After a fantastic first season, this has turned into a clunker of a syndicated soap opera. Hoping things turn around soon. Certainly has tried to build its mythology up a bit too much during the second season, when viewers just want a return to the delightful indulgences of the first season. Bring back the photos with faces being crossed out!

4. Modern Family – Really can’t add much in the way of commentary here. The series has added a solid season to its resume, albeit one without many memorable episodes. Several ‘in-jokes’ have been thrown into episodes this season, making it one of the harder seasons for new viewers to appreciate.

3. Switched At Birth – Despite the odd season numbering of this series, it’s been a pleasure to watch thus far. Haven’t missed an episode, and will watch it immediately upon airing or as soon as possible. Permanent spot on the DVR list – one of the very few television shows I would continue to watch if I had to pare back my schedule to the absolute minimum. Highly recommended. And new episodes are coming soon!

2. The Good Wife – Yet another fantastic series I would maintain on my limited season pass list. Yet another excellent season. However, I’m a bit skeevish about the overuse of Kalinda’s husband in this season. Just hope that he gets out of the picture fast and soon. Certainly appreciate the financial fortunes of the law firm being up and down, which lends a weighty note to the drama that helps one appreciate the series more.

1. American Horror Story: Asylum – While I appreciate Jessica Lange’s vastly expanded role in this series, it’s mind-bendingly difficult to keep track of all the intertwined story threads embedded into this season. Parts of each thread air in every episode, making it absolutely essential that you have a good memory and can keep track of each thread separately. It’s worth the time and effort though. Certainly will hope that they bring the show back for a third go-around with a different storyline.

While the above named shows had their moment in the spotlight already, there were a few other shows that I really enjoyed watching (or just wanted to comment on) from the 2012 fall television season:

  • The Challenge: Battle of the Seasons (MTV) – Finally, we got to see some new faces join the roster of Challenge participants. Would’ve been fantastic if we had gotten to see more old-school vets join up, beyond just half of Team Vegas. The Challenge is the fifth major sport in America after all!
  • Go On (NBC) – Glad to see Matthew Perry back on television. Nice show, serves as filler on my DVR list.
  • Glee (FOX) – Kind of a split result with the split in the cast. Would love to see Rachel/Kurt/et al. be actually spinned off onto their own show as was originally planned.
  • Nashville (ABC) – The new Glee. Some people like it better than Glee.
  • The New Normal (NBC) – Fantastic comedy. Not a must-watch.
  • Ben & Kate (FOX) – Cannot believe this show even got made.
  • Animal Practice (NBC) – Whoever thought this show was worth televising should be fired.
  • Fringe (FOX) – A fitting season thus far for Fringe’s finale. Wish it would continue, but kudos to Fox for ordering a final half-season to cap off the series. Only a few episodes remain.

With the 2012 fall recap out of the way, here’s what I’m looking forward to as far as winter 2012 new shows goes (exempting the returning holdovers as above, such as Switched at Birth):

  • Cougar Town (TBS) returns on TBS! Absolutely thrilled that TBS picked up this series, and hopefully this will be the start of a new trend, excellent shows being picked up by cable networks after they’ve been dropped by the networks. Would’ve been fantastic if SyFy had picked up Terra Nova last year.
  • The Americans (FX) – an all-new series starring Keri Russell in a ’80s Cold War drama setting. Cannot wait to see my favorite actress test out her chops in a drama again. I absolutely hated Running Wilde, but watched it just because of Russell. Hopefully The Americans does better.
  • The Following (FOX) – Kevin Bacon’s about to increase his reach by starring in this brand new television series. The premise of a FBI agent trying to track down serial killers is proven television gold, as can be seen in the various amalgamations of CSI:Wherever, The Mentalist, Dexter, et al.
  • Cult (The CW) – Absolutely enthralling premise. The question is if the series can deliver on its promise or not. If it does, I can see this series hanging on for a few seasons at the CW.

Hopefully, some of these new shows pan out and I can fill up my DVR list easily. If not, that’s just more time for reading books and other ephemeral pursuits!

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