The 2019 Fall TV Season: Sundays



We close out a week of night-by-night considerations of the new fall TV season with Sunday, still a strong showcase ( following Saturdays, a night so dismal we skipped it altogether).  Again, cable has the most ambitious titles for the evening, mostly later in the season. But broadcasters reboot a 50s format that few remember, adds to the pile of superhero shows, and  adds an animated show that’s actually pretty good. 


“Bless the Harts” (Fox, 8:30 p.m., starts tonight). “SNL” writer Emily Spivey crafts a story about a family from the South, with the voices of Kristen Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Jilliam Bell, Ike Barinholtz and Kumail Nanjiani. It’s packed with jokes that don’t necessarily poke fun at the characters and the setting, and fits well among both “Bob’s Burgers” and “The Simpsons.”

Pilot“Batwoman” (CW, 8 p.m., starts Oct. 6). Australian model Ruby Rose stars as the wealthy heiress who becomes her own costumed crime fighter, who is inspired to fill the void of Batman, who with Bruce Wayne seems to have disappeared from Gotham City. She’s got some other mantles to carry too – the first out lesbian superhero (and start of a network show). With Meagan Tandy, Camrus Johnson, Nicole Kang and Doughy Scott, it’s another in the many shows currently on TV from Greg Berlanti and his associates. Expect many crossovers with the other CW shows from the DC Comics world.

“Kids Say the Darnedest Things” (ABC, 8 p.m., Oct. 6). No less than Tiffany Haddish takes the role originated by Art Linkletter and picked up by Bill Cosby for two seasons in the late 90s, prodding small fry into saying some funny things. Usually they need no prodding.


“America’s Funniest Home Videos” (ABC, 7 p.m., back tonight), “60 Minutes” (CBS, 7:30 p.m., tonight), “The Simpsons” (Fox, 8 p.m., tonight), “God Friended Me” (CBS, 8:30 p.m., tonight), “Supergirl” (CW, 9 p.m., returns Oct. 6), “Bob’s Burgers” (Fox, 9 p..m., tonight), “Shark Tank” (ABC, 9 p.m., tonight), “Family Guy” (Fox, 9:30 p.m., tonight), “NCIS: Los Angeles” (CBS, 9:30 p.m., tonight), “The Rookie” (ABC, 10 p.m., tonight), “Madam Secretary” (CBS, 10 p.m., Oct. 6).


“Godfather of Harlem” (Epix, 10 p.m., tonight). An interesting twist on the “American Gangster” tale of Bumpy Johnson sees him as part of social change in the black community once he’s sprung from prison in the early 60s New York. So in addition to the mob figures (played by Vincent D’Onofrio, Paul Sorvino and Chazz Palmister) with whom he had to deal, there are also historical figures, from Malcolm X (Nigel Thatch) to Adam Clayton Powell Jr. (Giancarlo Esposito). Looks ambitious.

“Watchmen” (HBO, 9 p.m., premiering Oct. 20). Damon Lindelof’s eye popping adaptation of the popular graphic novel of the near future stars Regina King as a cop in alternate reality Tulsa where an African American enclave is under siege by masked white supremacists. Don Johnson, Tim Blake Nelson, Louis Gossett Jr., Jeremy Irons and Jean Smart are part of the cast. Hard to know where this will go, but the pilot is certainly dazzling and bold.

“Leavenworth” (Starz, 9:30 p.m., Oct. 20). A true crome docuseries from Stephen Soderbergh about an Army lieutenant who ordered soldiers fire on three local men riding a motorcycle, and was sentenced to 19 years in the U.S. penitentiary for murder.

“Mrs. Fletcher” (HBO, 10:30 p.m., Oct. 27). Tom Perrotta has a second novel adapted to a series on the network (after “The Leftovers”). This one is a smaller story, about a middle-aged woman who adopts a new persona after her son goes off to college. Kathryn Hahn stars, with Casey Wilson, Jackson White and Owen Teague.

“His Dark Materials” (HBO, 9 p.m., Nov. 4) Phillip Pullman’s fantasy series about an alternate world where each human has an animal companion comes to life with a cast that includes James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson, Clarke Peters and Lin-Manuel Miranda. With production values meant to make us forget about “Game of Thrones,” there is a bear instead of a dragon.

“The L Word: Generation Q” (Showtime, 10 p.m., Dec. 8). The rebooted series about lesbians in Los Angeles returns several of the original cast members, including Jennifer Beals, Kate Moennig and Leisha Hailey, but includes a number of new faces as well.

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