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TNT Raises the "Bar"

Brenda Johnson and Grace Hanadarko just got a little company.

Despite the ongoing writers strike currently putting a spanner in the works of television networks, TNT has gone ahead and ordered its first new series of the season.

In an unexpected move, the cabler has granted a ten-episode order for Raising the Bar, a legal drama from writer/executive producers Steven Bochco and David Feige.

Series, which stars Mark-Paul Gosselaar (NYPD Blue), Gloria Reuben (ER), Jane Kaczmarek (Malcolm in the Middle), Currie Graham (Men in Trees), Melissa Sagemiller (Sleeper Cell), and J. August Richards (Angel), revolves around a public defender who helps the helpless. It's scheduled to air later this year... I assume whenever the writers strike allows the series' staff to begin work.

Looks like I'm going to have to take a look at the pilot script and fast.

Stay tuned.

What's On Tonight

8 pm: CSI: New York (CBS); Chuck (NBC); Smallville (CW); Ugly Betty (ABC); Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader? (FOX; 8-10 pm)

9 pm: CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (CBS); Celebrity Apprentice (NBC); Supernatural (CW); Grey's Anatomy (ABC)

10 pm: Without a Trace (CBS); Chuck (NBC); Big Shots (ABC)

What I'll Be Watching

8 pm: Chuck.

Praise be Buy More! NBC's action-comedy Chuck (a Televisionary fave) returns tonight with its final two episodes of the season (unless the strike comes to an end and the crew returns to work). On the first of two brand-new episodes tonight ("Chuck Versus the Undercover Lover"), Chuck discovers that Casey's former flame is about to marry a Russian arms dealer and pushes Casey to fight for her while Ellie and Captain Awesome reach a plateau in their relationship.

8 pm: Ugly Betty.

On tonight's first-run episode ("A Thousand Words By Friday"), Betty agrees to an assignment from Daniel to interview a man she believes is an important novelist, only to learn he's written a series of books about picking up women; Daniel finds a new love interest in Renee (guest star Gabrielle Union), only to learn that they have a surprising connection to each other; Marc and Amanda plot to reach out to Gene Simmons, whom they believe to be Amanda's biological father.

8 pm: Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares on BBC America.

Season Four of the original UK Kitchen Nightmares begins tonight. On this week's installment ("Ruby Tates"), Gordon Ramsay heads to Brighton, where he attempts to save an overprice oyster bar from closing its doors forever. Will he succeed? Find out tonight. (And a hint to those with some major DVR conflicts, the episode also airs at 5 pm PT AND at 11 pm ET.)

10 pm: Chuck.

It's the second of two brand-new episodes of Chuck. On this episode ("Chuck Versus the Marlin"), Captain Awesome proposes to Ellie, Casey and Sarah learn that the CIA has been spying on them, and Chuck is moved to a holding cell in order for his protection.


Raising the Bar? Wow. I really hope that's a working title.
Anonymous said…
Decent cast. I'm thrilled to see J. August Richards' name in there. Has he done anything since Angel?

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