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The 9 Network TV Shows We’re Most Excited to Watch This January

Who says streaming platforms have all the fun?


spinner image Jon Cryer stars in "Extended Family," "Finding Your Roots host Henry Louis Gates Jr. and "We Are Family" host Anthony Anderson
(Left to right) Jon Cryer in "Extended Family," "Finding Your Roots" host Henry Louis Gates Jr. and "We Are Family" host Anthony Anderson
Ron Batzdorff/NBC; McGee Media/PBS; Tom Griscom/FOX

Streaming services like Netflix and Amazon’s Prime Video get all the attention (and many of the Emmys!), but networks continue to produce fresh and exciting content that often gets overlooked. Make a resolution this January to show some love to network television and check out critically acclaimed returning series (like Finding Your Roots), brand-new shows (like Rob Lowe’s game show The Floor or Extended Family) or some combination of the two, including a rebooted Night Court that picks up decades after the original series. And if you’re a proud cord-cutter, don’t fret: Some of these shows stream the following day!

Night Court (NBC)

The premise: Following in the footsteps of recently rebooted comedies like And Just Like That, The Conners and Will & Grace is this sequel of sorts to the seven-time Emmy-winning sitcom, which ran from 1984 to 1992. John Larroquette, 76, returns as prosecutor Dan Fielding, opposite Big Bang Theory star Melissa Rauch, whose character, Abby Stone, is taking over the judge’s bench at the Manhattan municipal court from her father Harry, played in the original series by the late Harry Anderson. The first season was a surprise ratings hit for NBC, and before the official start of the second season in January, NBC aired a holiday special featuring a guest appearance by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 76.

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Why you should tune in: The series is written by Dan Rubin, who’s best known for his joke-a-minute work on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.

Watch it: Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC

Don’t miss this: “Order in the ‘Night Court!’ — Marsha Warfield Is Back!”

America’s Got Talent: Fantasy League (NBC)

The premise: In this spin-off of NBC’s juggernaut competition series, judges Simon Cowell (64), Mel B, Howie Mandel (68) and Heidi Klum (50) draft teams of returning fan-favorite contestants, including aerialist Aidan Bryant, magician Anna Deguzman and singer Brian Justin Crum, and compete for the title of best coach. If it sounds a bit like another NBC reality series, The Voice, well, that’s because it is, and the winning act will take home $250,000.

Why you should tune in: AGT remains one of the Peacock Network’s safest bets, and there’s something comforting about getting to spend extra time with your favorite acts.

Watch it: Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC

Wild Cards (The CW)

The premise: Coproduced by Canada’s CBC network and the CW, this lighthearted crime procedural sees by-the-book cop Cole Ellis (played by Giacomo Gianniotti, whom you might know as Dr. Andrew DeLuca on Grey’s Anatomy) teaming up to solve crimes with a con woman named Max Mitchell (Vanessa Morgan, who recently ended her run as Toni Topaz on Riverdale). Jason Priestley, 54, costars as Max’s imprisoned con artist father, George, who’s so charismatic that even the guards at the prison where he’s being held seem to love him.

Why you should tune in: If you enjoy the zippy, sexy tone of dramedy procedurals like Castle and The Rookie, you’ll love this north-of-the-border import.

Watch it: Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on the CW

Extended Family (NBC)

The premise: Redefining what a sitcom clan looks like, this new NBC comedy could be the successor to Modern Family — with an equally impressive all-star cast. Two-time Emmy winner Jon Cryer, 58, and Abigail Spencer (you might recognize her from Grey’s Anatomy, Suits, Timeless, Rectify and True Detective) star as Jim and Julia, happily divorced exes who are co-parenting two kids. Things get complicated when she gets engaged to Trey, played by Scrubs star Donald Faison, who also happens to be the owner of Jim’s favorite sports team, the Boston Celtics.

Why you should tune in: The series was created by Mike O’Malley, 57, who starred on the comedy Yes, Dear and earned an Emmy nomination for his role as Kurt’s dad on Glee.

Watch it: Tuesdays at 8:30 p.m. ET on NBC

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We Are Family (Fox)

The premise: Anthony Anderson (53) and his mother, “Mama” Doris Bowman (70), host this high-concept musical game show in which noncelebrities perform duets with their famous relatives, who remain hidden. Is that Lady Gaga’s sister? Travis Kelce’s uncle? Beyoncé’s second cousin? The studio audience comprises 100 contestants who are working just as hard as you are at home to decipher the clues and figure out who’s performing. The only difference? They have the chance to take home $150,000 if they get it right!

Why you should tune in: If the 10 seasons (and counting) of The Masked Singer prove anything, it’s that audiences really love trying to guess the identity of hidden celebrities.

Watch it: Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Fox

The Floor (Fox)

The premise: In this new game show hosted and produced by Rob Lowe (59), 81 trivia-loving contestants face off on an LED floor divided into 100 boxes. Each player has a very specific area of expertise — including hip-hop, barbecue, cereal and ’80s TV — and after one is randomly selected, they must face off in a duel against a neighboring player. The winner takes their opponent’s squares, ultimately amassing more and more territory as they go. The last person standing takes home $250,000.

Why you should tune in: It’s a game show for people who love Jeopardy! but wish the set looked a bit more like Studio 54.

Watch it: Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET on Fox

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Finding Your Roots (PBS)

The premise: Returning for its 10th season, the hit genealogy show is still hosted by beloved Harvard professor and literary critic Henry Louis Gates Jr., 73, who guides celebrities on a journey to learn about their ancestors. After a dozen years on the air, Gates has still managed to gather a stacked lineup of A-listers, including Michael Douglas (79), Valerie Bertinelli (63), Brendan Fraser (55), Ed O’Neill (77), Bob Odenkirk (61), Dionne Warwick (83), Tracy Morgan (55) and many more. The season premiere, on Jan. 2, highlighted the backstories of musicians Alanis Morissette and Ciara.

Why you should tune in: In addition to the usual celebrities, this season will include a “Viewers Like You” episode, featuring three non-famous guests who have family mysteries they’re hoping to solve.

Watch it: Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on PBS

Don’t miss this: Henry Louis Gates: “I Work Hard and Sleep Like a Baby”

The Bachelor (ABC)

The premise: It’s the 28th season of this dating competition juggernaut, so you probably already know the gist! In this latest go-around, the guy looking for love is Joey Graziadei, a Pennsylvania-born teaching tennis pro based on Kaua‘i who was the runner-up on Season 20 of The Bachelorette. Among the 32 contestants are two real estate agents, two account executives, a vintage store owner, a nanny, a radiochemist and a Miami Dolphins cheerleader.

Why you should tune in: If you watch the show for its swoon-worthy filming locations as much as for its romance, you’ll be happy to know that the season will include episodes shot in Montreal, Tulum, Spain and Malta.

Watch it: Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC

spinner image Gemma Arterton stars as Barbara Parker in "Funny Woman."
Gemma Arterton stars as Barbara Parker in "Funny Woman."
Potboiler Productions; Sky UK Limited

Funny Woman (PBS)

The premise: This month, PBS will air the fourth seasons of two popular British series, Miss Scarlet and the Duke, about a pair of Victorian detectives, and All Creatures Great and Small, about veterinary surgeons working in the Yorkshire Dales in the 1930s and ’40s. Joining their ranks is the new show Funny Woman, which is something like the U.K. answer to The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Gemma Arterton, who played Bond girl Strawberry Fields in Quantum of Solace, brings wit and charm to the role of Barbara Parker, a beauty queen who trades in her post-pageant life to become a sitcom star in 1960s London.

Why you should tune in: The show is based on a best-selling novel by Nick Hornby, 66, who has a great track record with adaptations of his books, including About a Boy, High Fidelity and Fever Pitch.

Watch it: Sundays at 10 p.m. ET on PBS

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