new Cable TV shows

There's a few new shows on Cable Television premiering this week that I'm recording to see how they are. I've not watched any yet but I have hopes for all three that I profile here.

The shows are on 3 different networks, AMC (American Movie Classics), not a network, given its name, that you would associate with regular serial programming, USA Network, and Lifetime.

Mad Men premiers on July 19 on AMC. It's a drama set in 1960 about Madison Avenue advertising executives. The series was originally written up 7 years ago by Matthew Weiner--and that was what got him noticed by HBO. While Mad Men sat in the background ever since, Weiner did get a job to create a new series for HBO. The Sopranos. Now that gig is over he's back to working on Mad Men. Hopefully it'll be just as good as his last series.

Here's the write up on the series from AMC's website:

The Setting: In 1960, advertising agencies were an all-powerful influence on the masses. Personal and professional manipulation and sexual exploits defined the workplace and closed the deals. The high profile Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency created advertising campaigns – from cigarettes to political candidates -- better than anyone. It was a time of great ferment. Women had barely begun to come into their own. Librium and birth control were on the move. Ethics in the workplace, smoke-free environments, sexual harassment and ethnic diversity were workshops of the future.

The Premise: The series depicts the sexual exploits and social mores of this most innovative yet ruthless profession, while taking an unflinching look at the ad-men who shaped the hopes and dreams of Americans on a daily basis.

The Players: The series revolves around the conflicted world of Don Draper (Hamm), the biggest ad man (and ladies man) in the business, and his colleagues at the Sterling Cooper Advertising Agency. As Don makes the plays in the boardroom and the bedroom, he struggles to stay a step ahead of the rapidly changing times and the young executives nipping at his heels. The series also depicts authentically the roles of men and women in this era while exploring the true human nature beneath the guise of 1960 traditional family values.

Over on USA Network they've just recently begun a spy genre series named Burn Notice. Here's the summary from the USA website:

What is a burn notice?

When spies get fired, they don't get a letter from human resources.

They get BURNED...

Jeffrey Donovan stars as Michael Westen, an international spy who suddenly finds himself blacklisted. Dumped in his hometown of Miami without money or resources, Michael struggles to put his life back together and find out why he's been burned. In the meantime, Michael uses his unique skills and training to help people who can't get go to the police.

Michael is joined by Fiona (Gabrielle Anwar) an ex-IRA operative, who also happens to be an ex-girlfriend; and Sam (Bruce Campbell), a washed-out military intelligence contact who's being used by the feds to keep tabs on Michael.

He's also forced to confront the family he went halfway around the world to get away from - particularly his mother, Madeline (Sharon Gless) who couldn't be happier to have her son back in town.

The pilot episode of Burn Notice is being reprised at 9am on Saturday July 21 so I'll record it and catch up on the series.

Over on Lifetime there's a new series starting this week called State of Mind. It's more geared towards the female demographic, as you'd expect from Lifetime. This series focuses on actress Lili Taylor and here's the summary from Lifetime's website:

"State of Mind" centers around New Haven Psychiatric Associates, a rambling Victorian house turned office building for a group of therapists, a newly minted lawyer and an eccentric office manager, all of whom have personal problems as interesting as those of their eclectic and offbeat patients and clients. The series takes a unique perspective on sex, life, love, death, family and friends, incorporating complex personalities and an endless curiosity about human beings.

The ensemble series is led by Lili Taylor, who plays Ann, a brilliant psychiatrist who finds her life at a crossroads after she catches her husband, Phil, a fellow psychiatrist, having sex with their own couples counselor. With her personal life suddenly crumbling, Ann begins to feel she needs all the help she can get from her colleagues — who both help and hinder her.

The pilot was aired on July 15 but it's repeating frequently all this week. One nice thing about cable channels, they keep replaying episodes at all hours of the day and night. It's easy to find a time to record the show that doesn't conflict with anything else you might be doing.


SassyAssy said…
I really like Burn Notice! The show is very funny and I like the star of the show. He has a sarcastic humor that I really enjoy. Definitely worth watching.
rosemary said…
Ahh, maybe, maybe not, maybe.
srp said…
The premise of Burn Notice reminds me of a book I read from the library... agent canned, recruited back for some nanoprobe problem and former girlfriend agent and former agent who was thought to be dead but turns out not to be... no mother though! Can't even remember the name of the book now... too tired!

I still like the hummingbird the best!
Nancy said…
There is another show also: Damages. It is on FX. I think it starts next week.

I will be taping that, Madmen and Saving Grace. Because I don't have enough TV to watch. Two behind in my viewing right now...

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