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A new TV season has arrived

Fall is around the corner.  The leaves are changing.  The Toronto International Film Festival has snubbed an appropriate number of actors.  And television networks are about the launch a new season of shows.

Some shows are returning with new stories.  Others are touting a new cast.

Lethal Weapon will launch its third season with a new actor leading the charge since the last guy was such a jerk on-set.  Producers traded in a giant moustache and Jerry Lee Lewis hair for American Pie’s own Steve Stifler, Seann William Scott. Sweet.

Of course, the big story is always the new shows.  Former Castle star and Canadian hottie, Nathan Fillion, is back with a new cop show.  But this time, he’s in uniform for what may be a walking midlife crisis as The Rookie.

ABC has re-tooled last season’s comedy hit reboot without its matriarch to make The Conners the most talked-about sort-of-new show.  The premiere episode is all-but guaranteed to be a ratings juggernaut.  However, will viewers tune in long-term to watch the family strife without Roseanne?

Other new comedies are also finding the humour in daily issues with the racial integration of The Neighborhood and the failure of the supermom in I Feel Bad.

Following CBS’s previous successes re-vamping Hawaii Five-O and MacGyver for current audiences, Magnum P.I. is back.  The mansion is still huge, the cars are still hot and the Dobermans are still on patrol.  However, Higgins is a woman and Magnum is a Latino without the lip rug.

Meanwhile, another Canadian, former Rookie Blue star, Missy Peregrym, has joined the feds.  CBS is hoping FBI will do for CBS what Quantico did for ABC in its first season.  Then, improve on it.

A medical drama is always a good bet for the studios, as are the soulful eyes of Ryan Eggold from The Blacklist.  So NBC combined the two for New Amsterdam – a drama about an idealistic physician in a big hospital who – mini spoiler alert – may be dying.  It’s cliché but with solid eye-candy doctors, this drama may have a life.

One show going outside the box with a current trend is God Friended Me.  It follows an atheist son of a pastor who receives a mysterious “Friend” request from “God.”  It opens the door to spiritual beliefs without being too preachy.  But will traditional network viewers watch?  Early clips have a similar feel to ABC’s Eli Stone which ran from 2008 to 2009 with great reviews but poor viewership.

Traditional network shows are often disparaged for lacking creativity and edginess.  If viewers want something different, they go to cable channels or online streaming services.  But the networks do try different concepts with varying amounts of success.  Last year’s risky triumph was The Good Doctor.

So before you decide there’s nothing to watch on TV this fall, give some of the new shows a try.  The nice thing about the networks is that they do try to find something for everyone.