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Breaking through in a Peak TV world of more than 500 scripted originals is a challenging task. That’s why top showrunners and stars continue to be in high demand as broadcast, cable and streaming platforms look to cut through the cluttered landscape with familiar faces. Spinoffs and reboots are also in high demand, as most come with a pre-existing viewership that reduces costs associated with marketing and promotion.
Here, in a bid to navigate the Peak TV waters, THR picks the 10 most anticipated new and returning shows every month. (Bookmark THR‘s handy guide for key premiere — and series finale — dates.) Here are some of the can’t-miss premieres for September as the traditional fall broadcast season gets underway.
Mayans MC (FX, Sept. 4)
If it feels like this Sons of Anarchy prequel series has been in the works, it’s because it has. The redeveloped drama from Kurt Sutter was picked up to series in January after encountering a few speed bumps since it was ordered to pilot back in December 2016. The pilot featured a few recastings and was reshot with a new director. Mayans MC is set in a post-Jax Teller world, where EZ Reyes (JD Pardo), fresh out of prison, is a prospect in the Mayan MC charter on the Cali/Mexico border. Now EZ must carve out his new outlaw identity in a town where he once was the golden boy who had the American dream within his grasp. Edward James Olmos, Sarah Bolger, Clayton Cardenas, Richard Cabral, Michael Irby, Raoul Trujillo, Antonio Jaramillo and Carla Baratta round out the cast.
Shameless/Kidding (Showtime, Sept. 9)
Shameless returns for the first half of its ninth season, as the Emmy Rossum and William H. Macy dramedy clocks in as Showtime’s longest-running — and highest-rated — series. Season nine, which features recurring players Katey Sagal and Courteney Cox, will also feature the landmark 100th episode of the Warner Bros. TV-produced family drama.
Meanwhile, Showtime will use Shameless as a launchpad for Jim Carrey dark comedy Kidding, in which he stars as Jeff (aka Mr. Pickles), an icon of children’s TV.
You (Lifetime, Sept. 9)
From prolific producer Greg Berlanti, the Lifetime drama is based on Caroline Kepnes’ best-selling novel of the same name, and is described as a 21st century love story about an obsessive, yet brilliant 20-something guy (Penn Badgley) who uses the hyper-connectivity of today’s technology to make the woman of his dreams (Elizabeth Lail) fall for him. The series also scored an early second season renewal.
American Horror Story: Apocalypse (FX, Sept. 12)
The eighth season of Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s FX anthology features the long-awaited crossover between Murder House and Coven. Fan favorites Jessica Lange, Connie Britton, Taissa Farmiga and more join returning stars Sarah Paulson and Evan Peters in Apocalypse. In keeping with tradition, FX has not yet released a trailer for the new season, and instead is marketing the show with a series of cryptic teasers.
The First (Hulu, Sept. 14)
Sean Penn makes his TV series regular debut in the Hulu space drama from former House of Cards showrunner Beau Willimon. The two-time Oscar winner stars in the near-future-set drama about a crew of astronauts attempting to be the first humans on Mars. Natasha McElhone co-stars.
Maniac (Netflix, Sept. 21)
Based on the 2014 Norwegian TV series of the same name, the 10-episode dark comedy reunites Emma Stone with former Superbad co-star Jonah Hill. The duo star as two strangers who are caught up in a bizarre pharmaceutical trial gone bad. Patrick Somerville penned the series, which co-stars Justin Theroux, Julia Garner and Sally Field. True Detective Emmy winner Cary Fukunaga directs.
911 (Fox, Sept. 23)
The second season of the procedural from Murphy, Falchuk and showrunner Tim Minear added Jennifer Love Hewitt to help fill the void from departing star Britton. The Party of Five grad will play Maddie, the sister of firefighter Evan “Buck” Buckley (Oliver Stark), who is starting her life over as a 911 operator on the drama. 911 was a breakout hit for Fox last season and is among the cornerstones of “New Fox.”
The Big Bang Theory (CBS, Sept. 24)
The nerdy series from Chuck Lorre returns for its 12th season as one of TV’s highest-rated comedies prepares to wrap things up for good after star Jim Parsons decided his decade as Dr. Sheldon Cooper was enough. The multicamera comedy, which does not plot out arcs in advance, will begin with Sheldon and Amy (Mayim Bialik) on their honeymoon in New York. (CBS has not yet released any footage from the new season.)
Manifest (NBC, Sept. 24)
The Lost-like drama revolves around passengers on Flight 828, which — after suffering serious turbulence in the air — lands safely a few hours later, only the flight took off in April 2013 and lands on Nov. 4, 2018. Robert Zemeckis exec produces the drama, which stars Josh Dallas, Melissa Roxburgh and more.
This Is Us (NBC Sept. 25)
The third season of Dan Fogelman’s Emmy-nominated drama will continue to play with time and feature more flashbacks — and flash-forwards. Expect to see more of Randall’s (Sterling K. Brown) adopted daughter and Kevin’s (Justin Hartley) girlfriend as both Lyric Ross (Deja) and Melanie Liburd (Zoe) have been promoted to series regular. (NBC has yet to release footage of season three.)
Grey’s Anatomy (ABC, Sept. 27)
The Shondaland medical drama begins its impressive 15th season with leading lady Ellen Pompeo under contract for this and a yet-to-be-announced 16th season. Season 15 has been dubbed the “season of love,” and will feature Kim Raver’s return, as she reprises her role as Dr. Teddy Altman. Also look for Jeff Perry to return as Meredith’s father and Chris Carmack’s (Nashville) arrival as an “Ortho God.” (ABC has not yet released footage of the new season yet.)
Murphy Brown (CBS, Sept. 27)
Showrunner Diane English and stars Candice Bergen, Faith Ford, Joe Regalbuto and Grant Shaud return to CBS in the 13-episode revival that will feature Murphy’s adult son (played by Jake McDorman). The revival is focused through the prism of the press, English said, with early episodes tackling the #MeToo movement, returning to TV during the Trump presidency, frustrations in the White House press briefing room, the struggles of a DACA recipient and more. (CBS has not yet released new footage from the revival.)
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