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Summer TV for Grownups

Put these 13 new shows on your must-see-TV list this season

Grab Your Remote

Summer TV offers something to suit most any adult viewer’s taste: from catty quips to naval ships, Swedish relations to singing sensations; from an astronaut with child by a mystery conception to a spy whose brain is addled by a lifetime of deception. Preview the most promising new series:

Corbis

'Halt and Catch Fire'

This tech drama takes us back to 1983, with three outsiders in Texas — a pushy visionary (Lee Pace, right), a wary engineer (Scoot McNairy, left) and a beautiful, surly prodigy (Mackenzie Davis, center) — pushing themselves past all kinds of limits to create a revolutionary product at the dawn of the personal computing age. June 1, AMC

AMC

'Murder in the First'

From Steven Bochco, this single-story crime drama starring Taye Diggs and Kathleen Robertson goes deep into the investigations of two seemingly unrelated homicides that turn out to have a common denominator in Silicon Valley. Familiar faces abound, including James Cromwell, Richard Schiff, Steven Weber and Draco Malfoy (that is, Tom Felton). June 9, TNT, following Major Crimes

Turner Entertainment

'The Last Ship'

Executive producer Michael Bay (Transformers, etc.) brings his popcorn-movie sensibilities to the story of a lone naval destroyer left unscathed by a virus that has wiped out 80 percent of the Earth's population. The crew’s mission: to find a cure despite bad guys chasing them. Eric Dane (Dr. McSteamy on Grey's Anatomy) is the commander. June 22, TNT

Turner Entertainment

'Rising Star'

ABC's touting this show as the next evolution of live TV, and maybe it is. The mass viewing audience will give the yea or nay on singing contestants in real time using a new app. From left, Ludacris, Kesha and Brad Paisley constitute the panel, and Josh Groban, right, hosts. We hope to see Groban's quick wit and dry humor, not to mention hear his voice. June 22, ABC

ABC

'Taxi Brooklyn'

This action comedy starring Chyler Leigh was produced by EuropaCorp Television on location in New York and is already airing in France. Based on Luc Besson's Taxi films, it has Leigh as an NYC cop on the trail of her dad's murderer. After being demoted to foot patrol, she acquires use of a taxi driver's (Jacky Ido) skills and ride in exchange for a green card wedding. June 25, NBC

NBC Universal

'Vicious'

Two Sirs, with love. This British comedy stars Sirs Ian McKellen, left, and Derek Jacobi as a couple who have been together 48 years, sharing a Covent Garden flat and hurling wickedly funny invective at each other. It's airing Sundays along with season 2 of Jacobi's superb Last Tango in Halifax, in which he and Anne Reid play widowed septuagenarians who rediscovered each other on Facebook, fell in love and are now newlyweds. June 29, PBS

ITV

'Reckless'

Director Catherine Hardwicke's camera leers over bodies beautiful in Charleston, S.C., as a gorgeous New York lawyer (Anna Wood) and a hot Southern attorney (Cam Gigandet) deal with their mutual attraction and a gang-rape case involving police. Gregory Harrison plays a power broker. June 29, CBS

CBS

'The Leftovers'

From Tom Perrotta's book about the sudden disappearance of 2 percent of the world's population, a novel Stephen King dubbed “the best Twilight Zone episode you never saw,” Lost exec producer Damon Lindelof shepherds us on this rapturelike journey of society turned upside down. The cast includes Justin Theroux (pictured), Liv Tyler and Amy Brenneman. June 29, HBO

Paul Schiraldi Photography

'Extant'

Halle Berry is an astronaut who comes back from a year alone on a space station and finds out she's ... pregnant! As if that's not enough, her son at home is a doom-predicting artificially intelligent child, built by her husband (Goran Visnjic.) There's a lot going on in this limited ”event” series from Steven Spielberg, and a lot to see. They used Gravity as a benchmark for zero-G space scenes. July 9, CBS

CBS

'Welcome to Sweden'

Greg Poehler (brother of Amy) moved from New York to Stockholm to live with a Swedish woman nearly a decade ago. The show, which is his comedic view of his own experience, centers on the love story of Bruce Evans and Emma Wiik, set amid a wacky culture clash with her family. Welcome is already going into season 2 in Sweden. Amy, Will Ferrell and Gene Simmons appear. Patrick Duffy and Ileana Douglas play Bruce's parents. July 10, NBC

NBC

'Rush'

When you're rich and famous and have a dicey medical problem, like, say, an overdose or a beat-up girlfriend, who ya' gonna call?  Dr. William P. Rush (Tom Ellis, Miranda). He's an L.A. medical "fixer" with an outsize ego who commands top dollar (cash only) and parties hard himself. July 17, USA

USA

'Legends'

Sean Bean (Game of Thrones) plays a former deep-cover operative who is dealing with psychological disorientation, not sure which of his identities ("legends" in spy parlance) is real. Based on Robert Littell's 2005 book, Legends: A Novel of Dissimulation, the drama is executive-produced by Homeland’s Howard Gordon. Aug. 13, TNT

TNT

'Breathless'

Jack Davenport, center, aka the haughty, naughty theatrical director Derek of Smash, stars in this British import about a brilliant ob-gyn in a vividly reproduced London of 1961. The doctor is in the middle of some pretty soapy dramas and conflicts. A womanizer with secrets of his own, he's been called a British counterpart of Don Draper. Aug. 24, PBS

ITV Studios for MASTERPIECE

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