Fall 2009 has been a relatively strong one for new TV shows; such seasons happen every few years, as new shows shine bright while their ratings promise is still infinite. It's only October, so we viewers can also hold on to high hopes for our favorite network shows ("Who cares about ratings? NBC/CBS/ABC/Fox will surely recognize that this series can and should survive on artistic merit alone!", etc).
I'm enjoying shows on several networks. My old favorites on CBS (HIMYM, Big Bang Theory, Old Christine) are as good as ever, though new comedy Accidentally On Purpose is middling at best. Fox has a great new show in Glee, hilarious despite, or often because of, its groan-worthy moments (The Cleveland Show, on the other hand, just feels like Seth MacFarlane is punking America). My pick for best new, high-hopes show, however, is on ABC (surprise!). It's the smartly funny, remarkably well-cast single-camera comedy Modern Family. If you haven't seen it, consider this a call to arms. The show is a family comedy, technically speaking, but with clever twists to the classic family archetype that starts with the characters and carries into the plots and writing of each episode. I'm hoping hard that this one will be around for a while to come. But just in case, I'd love it if everyone would watch the next few episodes really hard for me. You'll like it.