September is usually a busy time for TV reviewers, as they scramble to cover all of the new fall premieres and separate the good from the nope.
This year, not so much.
Here are the six new shows I can recommend for September; even a couple of these are iffy. I did leave out Hocus Pocus 2, because … why Disney+, why?
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (Prime Video; premiered Thursday, Sept. 1): It’s the most expensive TV series ever made, and it comes with free shipping right to your home! The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (nobody’s ever going to call it all that—nice try, Prime Video) takes place millennia before The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, and—surprise—not everyone is white and British. LOTR:ROP is only 98% white and British, so, progress. Be sure to watch it before it’s stolen off your porch, nerds.
American Gigolo (Showtime; Friday, Sept. 9): Jon Bernthal (The Punisher) takes over Richard Gere’s 1980 film role as Julian Kaye, a Los Angeles male escort who gets caught up in a homicide case. In this American Gigolo, Kaye’s being released from jail after serving 15 years for a murder he didn’t commit. Can he adapt to a changed sex-worker market, reconcile with his ex (Gretchen Mol) and find the real killer? With a maximum amount of nudity and an obligatory remake of Blondie’s “Call Me,” probably.
Monarch (Fox, Hulu; Sunday, Sept. 11): A country music family dynasty is threatened by sinister secrets from the past … isn’t this the Nashville TV series from 10 years ago? Anyway: Monarch is a slightly different soap opera with a twang, starring Susan Sarandon, Anna Friel, ex-Gossip singer Beth Ditto, and literal country giant Trace Adkins. Monarch is loaded to the Truck Nutz with big hair, rhinestones and guest appearances by actual country stars, but it’s totally different from Nashville … ain’t it?
Reboot (Hulu; Tuesday, Sept. 20): It was bound to happen: a new show about rebooting an old show. The cast of an early 2000s sitcom (including Judy Greer, Keegan-Michael Key, Rachel Bloom, and Johnny Knoxville) reunite—uncomfortably so—to hear a pitch for a reboot of their hit series. Besides snagging a killer cast, Reboot was created by the showrunner behind Modern Family, Frasier and The Larry Sanders Show—this can’t possibly suck. Unless it does, at which point I will disavow all of this.
Andor (Disney+; Wednesday, Sept. 21): A prequel to the best Star Wars movie of them all, Rogue One (I’ll die on this hill on a watery planet), Andor follows the adventures of Rebel Alliance pilot Cassian Andor (Diego Luna). Unlike The Mandalorian and the other previous Disney+ Star Wars series (I want to say, Bald Goon and Space Jesus?), Andor will span 12 episodes, which is like forever. It also features writers and directors from House of Cards, The Americans and Black Mirror, so it could get dark AF.
So Help Me Todd (CBS, Paramount+; Thursday, Sept. 29): This isn’t so much a preview as a warning: So Help Me Todd’s trailer could be the most annoying 2:44 minutes I’ve ever endured—and I’ve seen New Found Glory live. Skylar Astin (Pitch Perfect) stars as Todd, a screwup private detective who’s recruited by his mother (Marcia Gay Harden) to work at her prestigious law firm. It’s a legal comedy-drama that could only be worsened by allowing Astin to sing. He doesn’t sing here, does he? Answer for your inhuman crime, CBS!