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12 Can’t-Miss New Fall TV Shows

A grownup’s guide to the best in television

  • Andrew Dosunmu/Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc/Courtesy of OWN

    ‘Queen Sugar’ (OWN, on now )

    (Tuesdays 10 p.m. ET) From executive producer Oprah Winfrey and director Ava DuVernay (Selma) comes an adaptation of Natalie Baszile’s novel about three estranged siblings who reunite to run their father’s 800-acre sugarcane farm in Louisiana. The drama is already being praised for spotlighting a family of African American entrepreneurs in the South — without stereotyping — and for DuVernay’s richly conceived story.

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  • Colleen Hayes/Courtesy of FX

    ‘Better Things’ (FX, on now)

    (Thursdays, 10 p.m. ET) Pamela Adlon — the longtime Louie  guest star who cocreated Better Things with Louis C.K. — plays an exasperated part-time actor and single mom of three in this semiautobiographical sitcom. Adlon’s unfiltered, acerbic character Sam Fox navigates matters of motherhood, Hollywood, sex, divorce and, in one teaser, teens and testy smoke alarms. No surprise it’s one of the most anticipated fall comedies.

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  • Courtesy of NBC

    ‘The Good Place’ (NBC, on now)

    (Thursdays, 8:30 p.m.. ET) Kristen Bell and Ted Danson star in this distinctive blend of fantasy and comedy about a hostile woman named Eleanor (Bell) who dies and mistakenly winds up in heaven due to a clerical error. Eleanor’s mentor (Danson) in the Good Place, unaware of the mistake, helps her adjust to life without vice — such as cursing — in this refreshing take on the afterlife.

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  • Richard Foreman/Courtesy of FOX

    ‘Lethal Weapon’ (Fox, Sept. 21)

    (Wednesdays, 8 p.m. ET) The iconic buddy-cop franchise is rebooted with Damon Wayans stepping into Danny Glover’s shoes as family man Roger Murtaugh, and newcomer Clayne Crawford as maverick Martin Riggs, a part made famous by Mel Gibson. The series begins with Riggs’ painful backstory — the death of his wife and unborn child — and picks up when the mismatched cops are paired together in Los Angeles.

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  • Chuck Hodes/Courtesy of FOX

    ‘The Exorcist’ (Fox, Sept. 23)

    (Fridays 9 p.m. ET) The iconic horror phenomenon, which has frightened viewers since 1973, is being adapted for the small screen. The series follows the plight of the Rance family, whose matriarch Angela (Geena Davis, in a triumphant return to television) enlists Catholic priests to save her demon-afflicted home. Tune in for the pilot, which ends with a well-earned twist.

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  • Myles Aronowitz/Courtesy of Netflix

    ‘Luke Cage’ (Netflix, available Sept. 30)

    Netflix’s latest Marvel installment stars Mike Colter as a Harlem-based superhero who has impenetrable skin — a spinoff of fan favorite Jessica Jones, which made Colter a household name. Expect confrontations with Alfre Woodard’s character, a local politician seeking to usher in a new era of change to the neighborhood, and with the show’s resident villain Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes (Mahershala Ali from House of Cards).

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  • John P. Johnson/Courtesy of HBO

    ‘Westworld’ (HBO, Oct. 2)

    (Sundays, 9 p.m. ET) HBO’s long-delayed and much-anticipated series — featuring such high-profile talent as Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris and Evan Rachel Wood — is being called the network’s next Game of Thrones due to its grand scale, high drama and spellbinding visuals. Loosely based on the 1973 Yul Brynner film of the same name, this sci-fi drama is set in a futuristic theme park where visitors live out their Wild West fantasies with the help of lifelike robots.

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  • Craig Blankenhorn/Courtesy of HBO

    ‘Divorce’ (HBO, Oct. 9)

    (Sundays, 10 p.m. ET) Twelve years after Sex and the City, Sarah Jessica Parker returns to HBO as Frances, the disillusioned wife to Thomas Haden Church’s equally downbeat Robert. As suggested, Divorce, an engrossing series from Irish writer-actress Sharon Horgan, follows the dissolution of their union. But don’t be fooled by the title or premise: It’s actually a comedy — one about the mores of modern marriage (and not Manolo Blahniks).

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  • David Moir/Courtesy of Hulu

    ‘Chance’ (Hulu, available Oct. 19)

    (Wednesdays) Four years after House ended, Hugh Laurie returns to the small screen as Eldon Chance, a forensic psychiatrist from San Francisco who gets caught up in a dark world of police corruption and mistaken identity. Based on the novel by Kem Nunn, the thriller has already been picked up for two 10-episode seasons.

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  • Sonja Flemming/Courtesy of CBS

    ‘Pure Genius’ (CBS, Oct. 27)

    (Thursdays, 10 p.m. ET) This gripping hospital drama comes from acclaimed showrunner Jason Katmis of Friday Night Lights and Parenthood fame. The premise? A billionaire tech titan (think a charming Mark Zuckerberg) enlists a disgraced surgeon (Dermot Mulroney) to serve as chief of Bunker Hill, a cutting-edge Silicon Valley hospital founded to treat the most challenging medical cases.

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  • Robert Viglasky/Courtesy of Netflix

    ‘The Crown’ (Netflix, available Nov. 4)

    From writer Peter Morgan (The Queen and Frost/Nixon) comes an intoxicating series examining the life of Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest-reigning monarch. Each season will cover a decade of Elizabeth’s life, beginning with events leading to her coronation at age 25. Morgan’s inspiration? The relationship between the young queen and her 77-year-old prime minister, Winston Churchill (John Lithgow). It’s Netflix’s most ambitious project to date, costing a rumored $100 million.

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  • Saeed Adyani/Courtesy of Netflix

    ‘Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life’ (Netflix, available Nov. 25)

    There’s no place like home, or so it seems in Stars Hollow. In rebooting the beloved series that left the air in 2007, Netflix capitalizes on nostalgia with four 90-minute episodes, each centering on a season of the year. The revival features all three Gilmore women — Lorelai (Lauren Graham), Rory (Alexis Bledel) and matriarch Emily (Kelly Bishop) — plus, after some casting drama, Melissa McCarthy’s beloved Sookie St. James

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