Fall TV Preview 2010

Don't look for innovative TV series like the lush feast of last season's "Glee," "Modern Family" and "The Good Wife."

But when the fall season gets underway this week, you will find the equivalent of mom's home cooking with a bunch of familiar series that might remind you of old favorites.

"Hellcats" 9 p.m., premieres Sept. 8 on CW

Law student Marti Perkins (Aly Michalka) may be hip and cool, but she needs to join the cheerleading squad when her college scholarship is discontinued. Enter Mean Girls, stage left.

IF YOU LIKE "Popular," the dark high school drama about cheerleaders vs. nerds, you might see a resemblance in this "Popular-lite" series.

"Nikita" 9 p.m., Sept. 9 on CW

Troubled teen Nikita (Maggie Q) gets absorbed into a secret agency and trained to be an operative in a covert spy operation. She eventually discovers that Division is evil and decides to bring it down.

IF YOU LIKE "Alias" or the previous versions of "Nikita," this series has the same sexy action with a beautiful lead.

"Mike & Molly" 9:30 p.m., Sept. 20 on CBS

Melissa McCarthy ("Gilmore Girls") is Molly, a fourth grade teacherw ho meets her soul mate, Officer Mike, at an Overeaters Anonymous meeting.

IF YOU LIKE "The Office" romance between Jim and Pam, ultimately this is a love story that offers up the same smart dialogue and tender moments.

"Lone Star" 9 p.m., Sept. 20 on Fox

This Texas drama centers on affable con man Robert Allen (James Wolk), who wants to go straight. Yet he doesn't want to give up his two wives who know nothing about his duplicitous lifestyle.

IF YOU LIKE the oil dealings of the old soap "Dallas" coupled with a dash of "Big Love," this complex drama has it all.

"The Event" 9 p.m., Sept. 20 on NBC

This thriller stars Jason Ritter ("The Class") as Sean Walker, who is caught up in a government cover-up that is so secret that even the President (Blair Underwood) doesn't know what The Event is. Oh, and there's a plane on a crash course.

IF YOU LIKE "Lost" with all its mythology and unanswered questions, this thriller promises to keep you just as distracted and uninformed. Did we mention a plane?

"Hawaii Five-O" 10 p.m., Sept. 20 on CBS

Alex O'Loughlin and Scott Caan team up as reluctant police partners Mike Garrett and Danny "Danno" Williams. Lots of explosions and great scenery.

IF YOU LIKE the original "Hawaii Five-O", this series offers even better banter between McGarrett and Danno.

"Raising Hope" 9 p.m., Sept. 21 on Fox

Jimmy (Lucas Neff) has a one-night stand with a murderer (Bijou Phillips) that results in an infant daughter. His slacker family isn't suited to help raise the kid. His only hope is new friend Sabrina (Shannon Woodward), a sardonic checkout clerk he met at the local grocery store.

IF YOU LIKE "Malcolm in the Middle," you're in luck. We haven't seen a family this jacked up, or so funny for so many wrong reasons, since that Fox series left the air.

"Running Wilde" 9:30 p.m., Sept. 21 Fox

An immature wealthy playboy (Will Arnett) hopes to hook up again with his former childhood crush Emmy (Keri Russell). Emmy's out to save the world, and self-absorbed Steven just wants to win back his first love.

IF YOU LIKE "Arrested Development," then hope for the best. Creator Mitch Hurwitz made comic magic with Arnett with that comedy, but this hurried pilot doesn't show off the considerable talents of either.

"Detroit 1-8-7" 10 p.m., Sept. 21 on ABC

"Sopranos" star Michael Imperioli tries another round of being on the right side of the law after his former stint on the short-lived "Life on Mars." This time, he's a driven, damaged homicide cop who torments his new partner (Jon Michael Hill).

IF YOU LIKE damaged cops like Jimmy McNulty of "The Wire," then Imperioi's got a character you'll find intriguing.

"Undercovers" 8 p.m., Sept. 22 on NBC

Producer J. J. Abrams created this spy drama about a married couple getting back into the business after cooking up a new career as caterers. Both realize they need to spice up their careers - and their marriage.

IF YOU LIKE "Chuck" with a couple juggling their day jobs with their spy jobs, then target this spy thriller.

"The Defenders" 10 p.m., Sept. 22 on CBS

Jerry O'Connell and Jim Belushi star as two rascals who also happen to be Las Vegas attorneys. The two take on the more colorful defendants in a glitzy city.

IF YOU LIKE "Vega$" - the PI series starring Robert Ulrich - you'll like this insider's look at Sin City.

"The Whole Truth" 10 p.m., Sept. 22 on ABC

This series ponders the question of guilt or innocence by portraying both sides of the coin. Maura Tierney stars as tough criminal prosecutor Kathryn Peale.

IF YOU LIKE the balance of "Law & Order," this show's for you. It also offers more personal stories, and for those frustrated over the years by the "L&O" franchise's arbitrary endings, you'll get real closure here.

"$#*! My Dad Says" 8:30 p.m., Sept. 23 on CBS

William Shatner stars as Ed, a guy with no restrictor plate on his mouth. The comedy is based on a popular Twitter feed by writer Justin Halpern.

IF YOU LIKE Red on "That '70s Show," then you'll bond with Ed who also colorfully derides his son for his numerous inadequacies.

"Outsourced" 9:30 p.m., Sept 23 on NBC

A novelty company specializing in such must-have items as fake vomit and foam fingers relocates their call center from the Midwest to India. Todd (Ben Rappaport) is the new manager who moves to India to teach the American culture to his new Indian team.

IF YOU LIKE "The Office," then NBC's banking on this similarly themed series that's joining the Thursday night comedy block.

"Body of Proof" 9 p.m. Friday Sept. 24 on ABC

A brilliant neurosurgeon (Dana Delaney) who put her career ahead of her personal life loses her surgical abilities after a car accident and goes to work as an obnoxious medical examiner. She solves the mysteries, but can't quite crack the code when it comes to personal relationships.

IF YOU LIKE "House," this drama covers the exact same ground with a main character who is a brilliant but socially challenged doctor trying to solve medical mysteries while unable to repair personal ailments.

"Outlaw" 10 p.m. Friday Sept. 24 on NBC

Jimmy Smits stars as Supreme Court Justice Cyrus Garza, son of a Cesar Chavez-like activist, who turned into a politically conservative, womanizing gambler. Cyrus returns to private practice where he can help "the little guy" by using knowledge he gathered as the ultimate insider.

IF YOU LIKE CBS' "The Mentalist," both feature protagonists who know how to get inside corrupt minds because they have been there themselves.

"Blue Bloods" 10 p.m. Friday Sept. 24 CBS

Tom Selleck heads up this family cop drama as the New York Police Commissioner trying to solve crimes and keep his family in line.

IF YOU LIKE "Brothers & Sisters," you'll see this is just the same type of rocky multigenerational relationship show.