|"90210" made its debut last week.
It's the boob tube's bustiest time of year.
What follows is a list of most of the highest-profile series scheduled to splash onto your TV screens this September and October, in order of debut date, either for their inaugural seasons or their new seasons. The main focus is scripted shows, but we have included the better known reality shows and game shows, too.
In terms of series that originate on U.S. cable networks, many of them are in the middle of their runs, or have completed their runs, south of the border. But if the seasons in question are new to Canada, we've included some of them here.
And please understand, as this is being written, this list is as accurate as we can make it. Networks change their debut dates sometimes, due to breaking news events interrupting scheduled programming, or whatever. Shockingly, we are not consulted on these moves.
So a week or so before your favourite show is scheduled to come back, double-check your local listings before sending us a nasty e-mail, okay?
Onward we go:
Its best days are behind it, but still packs a powerful comedic punch.
Anna Paquin, Stephen Moyer and a vampire tale that gets under your skin -- in a good way.
Nancy Botwin and her bizarre family were on the move -- literally -- at the end of last season.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Bad guys coming, gotta fight 'em; the storyline wears you out, but the effects are impressive.
The Cho Show
A little of Margaret Cho goes a long way, frankly.
Do Not Disturb
E!, on Fox Sept. 10
You know what's really disturbing? How unfunny this show is.
Set in a high-tech town rather than a rube town, it's an interesting twist on standard sci-fi fare.
Is Gordon Ramsay nearing the end of his fame cycle?
Fans of this show are the most devoted in TV, and it doesn't even have a vampire in it.
CTV, A, Fox
Not as laborious as Lost; does J.J. Abrams still have the Midas touch?
Death can't come soon enough.
So You Think You Can Dance Canada
Likely to be a huge hit north of the border.
Don't Forget the Lyrics
We forgot already.
Saturday Night Live
Olympic swimming champion Michael Phelps hosts the premiere.
Last season's finale was so freakin' sad. We know this is a medical drama, but a little levity, please!
The Biggest Loser: Families
Does the title describe families who compete, or families who watch?
CW, Sun-TV in Ontario
The indefatigable Superman saga continues to yield dividends.
CW, Sun-TV in Ontario
Last season a hellbound character was ripped apart by invisible dogs. How many shows can say that?
Everybody Hates Chris
CW, on Citytv Oct. 3
Why does this series get so little respect? It's narrated by Chris Rock, you know.
Not a series, but if you're a TV lover, you likely will be tuned in here.
Without a Trace
CTV, on CBS Sept. 23
For some reason, this and NCIS are the same show in my head.
It's the final season, so maybe we finally can stop giving James Spader Emmy awards.
It's going to come back really strong. It is. For those of us who once loved it, you gotta believe.
Dancing with the Stars
Glitzy and glamorous ratings juggernaut shows no signs of losing its step.
A, on CBS Sept. 23
Simon Baker is a celebrity psychic who winds up working for the police.
Two and a Half Men
Have you seen the size of the kid lately? This is on the verge of becoming Three Men.
The Big Bang Theory
One of the most charming ensemble casts on TV. Check it out.
How I Met Your Mother
You know who could wind up being the mother? Bristol Palin. Uh-oh, did we just go too far?
This tale of a karma-challenged dude could get old very fast, but I laughed hard at the first episode.
People love making fun of David Caruso, but they also love watching him, apparently.
Law & Order: SVU
Thank goodness this show has been around long enough for me to learn how to spell Mariska Hargitay.
CBS, on Global Sept. 24
For some reason, this and Without a Trace are the same show in my head.
Ashton Kutcher's latest production project gives families a chance to win big.
Take that, Cashmere Mafia.
Uh-oh, better get Geico.
The New Adventures of Old Christine
I've tried to like this, but dammit Elaine, I can't quite do it.
Oh Mandy, you came and you gave without taking ... actually, Mandy Patinkin took the attention away.
CSI: New York
Some claim this actually is
the best sibling in the CSI family.
A new sitcom with Jay Mohr that looks absolutely, positively horrid.
Where the hell is Gabon, anyway?
Many great story arcs were set up in the season finale. Funniest show on TV.
My Name is Earl
Great cast, but this is nearing the end of its run, we would think.
Final season for a legendary series. Will George Clooney come back for a cameo?
Looking forward to Lindsay Lohan's contribution. Seriously, that's not sarcasm.
Time to sigh, time to lie, time to cry, time to die -- this is chick TV at its absolute best.
Leaves me kinda chilly.
King of the Hill
Bobby Hill is one of the most admirably quirky characters in TV history.
If this series operated in real time, Bart would be about 30 by now.
Been around for quite a while, but hasn't lost its bite or its bravery.
Doesn't do much for me; seems like the weak sister of the cartoon crowd.
The Amazing Race
We're less amazed than we used to be, but it's a game show, a travel show and a reality show all wrapped into one.
Shouldn't David Duchovny be starring in this?
For real, the narrative has jumped ahead five years. It's liberating for the writers as well as for the sexy actresses.
Brothers & Sisters
More Proof: Savvy primetime soap operas never completely go out of style.
Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
Coincidentally, I'd have to undergo an extreme makeover to watch this.
Everyone's favourite serial killer faces new foes, but as much as we love it, we're wondering if this show has peaked.
A serious modern drama that Canadians were smart enough to embrace right away.
Love the name of the big-box store where Chuck works: Buy More. That's reason to watch right there.
Sarah Shahi used to be a Dallas Cowboys cheerleader. That's reason to watch right there.
Apparently David Duchovny is playing himself, rather than with himself.
Not my thing, but I'm not an inventor or a businessman, and this undeniably has a solid following.
Little Britain USA
Hilarity crosses the ocean. Look out, America, these guys are fearless.
Rick Mercer Report
There's just something about this guy that Canadians love.
A, on ABC Oct. 1
Great cast and cool look, we personally are pleased it skirted the axe.
Lavish and lush, a show fit for a king.
Little Mosque on the Prairie
Snubbed by the Geminis again, but the numbers have held up fairly well.
Natalie Brown is one of the most likable stars on TV
Not much buzz left for one
of last year's big-buzz shows.
Dirty Sexy Money
Crazily over-the-top, but this show grew on me as its rookie season developed.
The Ghost Whisperer
Spooky subject matter plus curvy Jennifer Love Hewitt equals diehard fans.
Air Farce Live
Final season for these cagey veterans wraps up on New Year's Eve.
Thematically similar to last season's New Amsterdam, and that show flopped.
Every man's fantasy.
Every woman's fantasy.
Hearts and horses; a quality show for the whole family,
and those are rare indeed.
The Clone Wars
An animated version, but can't we get over this Star Wars stuff? It has been 30 years, after all!
America's Funniest Home Videos
Hasn't YouTube made this completely redundant?
We guarantee the final season for Dog River won't be a dog. Canadian gems like this don't come along very often, so enjoy it while you can.
Christina Applegate's recent health problems just another reason to cheer for her.
Degrassi: The Next Generation
It truly is a new generation, with Shenae Grimes gone to 90210.
Goodbye William Petersen, hello Laurence Fishburne, but not until mid-season.
Will midnight strike for Rufus Sewell and this poor-man's Fringe?
Life on Mars
Michael Imperioli goes back to the '70s. Candidate for early whacking.
Kath & Kim
Molly Shannon (age 43) and Selma Blair (age 36) as mother and daughter? Puh-leeze.
Less Than Kind
Canadian dysfunctional-family comedy -- with former Kid In The Hall Mark McKinney as the show-runner -- looks quite promising.
My Own Worst Enemy
Christian Slater in a split-personality saga. Maybe he's Jack Nicholson's alter-ego after all.
Likable cast, and Katie Holmes is a guest-star, but will audiences sing along?
New outlet for Kenny vs. Spenny-style yuks.
Funny Canadian sitcom deserves more attention.
Kind of the original Lost ... or the original Gilligan's Island, for that matter.
A little too gross at times, but still admirably shocking after all these years.
Maybe this is where Mats Sundin will wind up playing.
The Sarah Silverman Show
She can't bounce things off ex-boyfriend Jimmy Kimmel any more.
The Starter Wife
Debra Messing has to rebuild her life in Hollywood after being dropped by her studio-executive hubby.
Keys to the VIP
Obnoxiousness on parade, but it speaks to a certain crowd.
Get wet, people -- this is an under-rated Canadian show with some quality actors.
Watch for Jennifer Aniston as a guest-star this season.
EARLY BIRDS THAT DEBUTED EARLY
Global, CW, Sept. 2
Canadian kids have taken over the most famous zip code in America.Canadian kids have taken over the most famous zip code in America.
A, AMC, July 27
Time-in-a-bottle period piece that is one of the best dramas on TV, period.
Deal or no Deal
E!, NBC, Aug. 25
Seems to have staying power, and there's a daytime version on the way.
Global, Fox, Sept. 1
That Dr. Sara sure has a good head on her shoulders.
A, CW, Sept. 1
People like talking about this show more than they like watching it.
Global, Fox, Sept. 3
Critical respect for this series seems to be steadily on the rise.
America's Next Top Model
A, CW, Sept. 3
We prefer the 30 Rock version, America's Next Top Pirate.
Showcase, Sept. 3
Has run out of steam; on life-support in the U.S.
Showcase, Sept. 4
We love Holly Hunter; we don't love this show quite as much.
Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?
E!, Fox, Sept. 5
Never under-estimate the consistent ratings power of family-friendly fare.
ON TAP FOR 2009
To tide you over, there's a two-hour prequel scheduled for Nov. 23.
Canadian series about the perils of reading other people's thoughts.
The countdown continues; two seasons to go before we allegedly find out what the hell is going on.
New hot female judge has the clock ticking on crazy Paula Abdul.
Technologically ground-breaking sci-fi, and all-Canadian, too.
The Cleveland Show
Family Guy spinoff, but we're not exactly sure what the point is.
Equal parts dark, sad and funny, this has attracted a strong cult following.
Howie Do It
Howie Mandel, unscripted; could be a golden age for lawyers.
A personal fave, we made a deal with the devil and arranged for this to return.
Watch out, Patty -- Ellen is all grown up and isn't scared of you any more.
Eliza Dushku in co-ed showers. Early candidate for "best show ever."