Summer is here and school is out! But like any good teacher, we have assigned some homework. (Don't worry, the beach will still be there tomorrow.)
With more great TV than ever available in so many different places, it's easy to miss a show or two. Below, we've hand-picked a dozen that you might not have noticed or simply didn't have the time for during the regular TV season. But they deserve your attention. Behold the 12 shows you should catch up on this summer:
It's not much of a spoiler alert to point out that the title character of ABC's Red Widow winds up in (sexy) mourning by the half-hour mark of Sunday's dreary two-hour premiere (9/8c). It's even less of a surprise, given the nature of this most dismal network midseason in recent memory, that these widow's weeds are fashioned from less than sturdy dramatic fabric.
Weeds being among the shows that dealt with this sort of subject with more imaginative verve. The subject: murderous drug intrigue cloaked in...
A Viking raider caps off a growled command at his men by driving his ax into the ground. Hard. Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel) is as strong as the steel blade — and just as lethal. He's a Norse legend brought to life in Vikings, History's first scripted series. "Ragnar is very ambitious," says Fimmel on set in Ireland, near the famous Powerscourt waterfall. "He starts out as a farmer, but it's not enough for him. He seeks adventure, knowledge and fame."
And to get it, he's gonna need a better boat. Ragnar secretly commissions the creation of a lighter, faster version of...
A&E has ordered 13 episodes of The Beast, a drama series starring Patrick Swayze as an unorthodox FBI agent dogged by Internal Affairs. Swayze was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer earlier this year but has been responding well to treatment, and his doctors cleared him to return to work. "I have searched for quite a long time to find a character that is this multilayered, unpredictable and downright entertaining," says Swayze in a statement, "as well as a project this current and cutting-edged."The Beast and Ben Bratt's The Cleaner (premiering July 15) mark A&E's first original scripted dramas in six years. Production starts this summer in Chicago, says the Reporter, with an eye on an early 2009 bow. Matt MitovichRelated: Swayze: I'm Responding Well to Cancer Treatment Casting News: Swayze's Beastly Role
Scoop! The Young and the Restless redhead Michelle Stafford (Phyllis) recently shot a Fox pilot in Memphis. It's an hourlong drama whose working title is Southern Comfort.
"You have the exclusive on that, my friend!" Stafford tells TVGuide.com. "The leading lady is Madeleine Stowe. She plays Charlotte, a Southern belle whose husband is in the Mafia, unbeknownst to her. He gets caught and she basically becomes a Mafia princess. I play her perky, happy best friend, Susan, and I have a twangy accent!"
Other celebs appearing in the pilot include Eric Roberts and Calvin Klein model Travis Fimmel, who briefly starred in WB's Tarzan.
Stafford left Y&R once before, back in 1997, to star in Aaron Spelling's superfun but short-lived nighttime sudser Pacific Palisades. But the Daytime Emmy winner's fans need not fret just yet about the