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Get the scoop on what's ahead for your favorite TV shows this season

Shaun Harrison
Returning-Shows-30-Rock1.jpg
1 of 40 Ali Goldstein/NBC

30 Rock (NBC)

Premieres: Thursday, Oct. 4 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Liz officiated Jack and Avery's vow renewal ceremony, which turned into a divorce when they admitted that they only got married because of their daughter Liddy. Meanwhile, Jenna and Paul got engaged. Criss sold his hot dog truck to raise money to pay for his and Liz's nursery renovation, and they decide to have a child together. What's Next: Season 7 — the show's last — will be about Liz's road to motherhood, but it won't necessarily show Liz as a mom. Blerg! Tina Fey wants to bring back old faces, including Isabella Rossellini (Jack's first ex-wife, especially now that he's divorced again), Salma Hayek and Michael Sheen.
2 of 40 Prashant Gupta/FX

American Horror Story (FX)

Premieres: Wednesday, October 17 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: The Harmon family moved into a haunted house in Los Angeles. After a series of spooky twists and turns (and the weirdest birth scene ever), all of the Harmons ended up dead. Because the series is an anthology nothing from Season 1 will carry over, except some of the previous cast members, including Jessica Lange, who will take on new roles. What's Next: The second installment, titled American Horror Story: Asylum takes place in the 1960s at a New England sanitarium run by Lange and Joseph Fiennes. Though the asylum won't be filled with ghosts like Murder House, Murphy promises there will be no lack of scares. "I think the story is horrifying," he tells us. "The story is a period piece in a mental institution based largely on truth. And truth is always scarier than fiction." Adam Levine, Jenna Dewan, Clea DuVall, James Cromwell, Mark Consuelos, Chloë Sevigny, and Chris Zylka join returning cast members Zachary Quinto, Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters and Lily Rabe.
3 of 40 Michael Yarish/CBS

The Big Bang Theory (CBS)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 27 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Howard and Bernadette had a rooftop wedding just days before he blasted off into space, which the whole gang watched wistfully on TV. Leonard also awkwardly proposed to Penny in bed. What's Next: Howard will still be in space for a few episodes when Season 6 returns, but when he does land back on Earth, he will be emboldened by his other-worldly adventure. Howard and Bernadette's living situation will also be resolved (to live with Mrs. Wolowitz or to not?), while Leonard and Penny will try to get on the same page about marriage. Sheldon and Amy's baffling relationship will progress, and Raj will finally get a girlfriend! Hopefully it's not Siri again.
4 of 40 CBS

Blue Bloods (CBS)

Premieres: Friday, Sept. 28 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Frank and the NYPD prevented a terrorist attack, which he kept secret from his family since it overlapped with the clan's most sentimental holiday, Mother's Day. Tension between Danny and Jamie came to a head over an arrest, which led to the elder brother and Jackie rescuing a boy from a cold case. What's Next: Lots of changes and new faces. Linda will return to work as a nurse, which causes problems between her and Danny. Jamie will get a new partner who can't keep his mouth shut. And we'll finally meet Erin's ex-husband, Jack Boyle (Peter Hermann), whom she'll face in court. Even better? They're arguing over the constitutionality of one of Frank's new building search policies.
5 of 40 Patrick McElhenney/Fox

Bones (Fox)

Premieres: Monday, Sept. 17 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Cyber serial killer Christopher Pelant (guest star Andrew Leeds) framed Brennan for murder. Deciding she could only beat Pelant by staying off the grid, Brennan took Baby Christine and went on the lam, leaving Booth behind. What's Next: Brennan & Co. will find a way to clear her name, but don't look for everything to go back to normal, especially on the home front. "[Booth's furious with Brennan because [he thinks], 'Wasn't there some way that she could include him? Why didn't she trust him with that information?'" executive producer Stephen Nathan tells us. Plus: Both Cam and Sweets will get new love interests, and Pelant will be a recurring threat. "Pelant is by no means gone," Nathan says. "He is going to surprise the team — and us — at every turn."
6 of 40 Starz

Boss (Starz)

Premieres: Friday, Aug. 17 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Election day was a dark day for Chicago Mayor Tom Kane, who learned that he had been betrayed by both his wife and his closest advisor, Ezra, who was murdered. No wonder Tom collapsed in the final moments of the Season 1 finale. What's Next: Now that Ezra is out, Tom will look for new faces to trust. New Kane allies include Glee's Jonathan Groff as Kane's naïve-but-determined new right-hand man and Family Guy's Sanaa Lathan as Kane's new chief of staff. Even with a new support system, every day is a tense struggle as Kane's degenerative neurological disorder worsens and threatens to potentially strike him down at any moment.
7 of 40 Vivian Zink/ABC

Castle (ABC)

Premieres: Monday, Sept. 24 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Beckett recklessly pursued the man who shot her, and Castle confessed his secret investigation of Beckett's mother's murder. But after Beckett nearly got herself killed and resigned from the force, she realized she only wanted to be with Castle. (Translation: They totally did it!) What's Next: While the new season will have a lot of fun with Beckett and Castle trying to keep their relationship under wraps, Beckett will also quickly be back in the crosshairs of her former assailant. "Beckett is still under threat," creator Andrew W. Marlowe teases. "[They] wake up... in that blissful bubble, [but] life has a way of coming in and bursting that bubble." Perhaps coming to Beckett's aid is a powerful U.S. senator (guest star Jack Coleman), who has "compelling information" about Johanna Beckett's murder, which will finally be solved. "It's going to spin our characters in a different emotional direction," Marlowe says. "Once Beckett has that knowledge, what's she going to do with it and who is she going to become?"
8 of 40 Sonja Flemming/CBS

CSI (CBS)

Premieres: Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Former nemesis McKeen (guest star Conor O'Farrell) returned and masterminded a plot that ended with Russell's granddaughter being kidnapped, Conrad Ecklie being shot and Nick walking away from his job at the crime lab. What's Next: Although we expect Russell's granddaughter to be just fine, expect to spend more time with Russell's family throughout the season. And Nick won't stay gone for long. "He's the kind of guy who doesn't run from a fight," George Eads says. "He got frustrated and fed up, but I don't think he would ever leave his teammates in the middle of battle."
9 of 40 Randy Tepper/Showtime

Dexter (Showtime)

Premieres: Sunday, Sept. 30 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Dexter delivered his own biblical form of vengeance upon Doomsday Killer Travis (guest star Colin Hanks). Unfortunately, Dexter wasn't alone — Deb, who returned to the church to profess her love for her (adopted) brother, walked in just as Dexter plunged the knife in Travis' chest. What's Next: The premiere will pick up immediately after the finale, with Dexter attempting to explain his actions to his sister. The season will explore the danger of Debra possibly turning Dexter in at any time. And after La Guerta discovers one of Dexter's blood slides at the crime scene, she'll go on her own quest to reinvestigate the Bay Harbor Butcher case. Plus: Chuck's Yvonne Strahovski plays a woman who once went on a killing spree with her boyfriend and is tasked with helping Miami Metro with a cold case.
10 of 40 Liane Hentscher/Fox

Fringe (Fox)

Premieres: Friday, Sept. 28 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: In order to stop William Bell from creating a new universe he could control, Walter was forced to shoot Olivia through the head. Thanks to the high levels of Cortexiphan in her system, she was able to regenerate the tissue and survive, and she later learned that she's pregnant with Peter's baby. Walter was warned that the Observers are coming, a reference to the flash-forward to 2036, when the Observers have taken over the world and enslaved humanity. What's Next: The fifth and final season will take place in 2036, picking up the day after Peter, Astrid and Walter were freed from the amber. First order of business: find Olivia and reunite the Fringe team. Though the key to taking down the Observers lies in Walter's mind, the group may also need William Bell to win the war. However it ends, showrunner J.H. Wyman says the final season will pay off for long-time fans in a bunch of a-ha moments. "There's going to be a lot of those [moments] and one specifically that's going to be very impactful, I hope," he says.
11 of 40 Adam Rose/Fox

Glee (Fox)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 13 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Eight members of New Directions graduated, including Rachel, who went on her own to New York after Finn decided to join the Army and end their engagement. And Coach Sue is preggers! What's Next: Everyone will be back, but it’s still pretty unclear exactly how the musical dramedy will work in Season 4 while splitting time between Lima and New York. (The latter location will feature guest stars Kate Hudson and Sarah Jessica Parker). Rachel will find a possible new love interest (Dean Geyer) at NYADA, but she’ll also struggle with the pressures to succeed. Also, Sue will be a mom, but fans will have to wait a while for the reveal of her famous baby daddy.
12 of 40 Giovanni Rufino/CBS

The Good Wife (CBS)

Premieres: Sunday, Sept. 30 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Alicia and Kalinda both ended the season haunted by unions past, as Alicia contemplated going back to Peter and our favorite private investigator anxiously awaited the arrival of her scary, never-before-seen husband. What's Next: After that mysterious and menacing knock on the door in the finale, Mr. Kalinda (Marc Warren) will loom large this season. His presence will bring out a new side of Kalinda as we learn exactly what he's after. As Peter's campaign for governor heats up and Lockhart & Gardner continues to evolve, the legal drama will welcome lots of fresh faces, including a nosy reporter (Kristin Chenoweth), a man intent on fixing Lockhart & Gardner's long-troubled finances (Nathan Lane) and a self-made billionaire (Maura Tierney) who Eli is eager to recruit for the Florrick campaign.
13 of 40 David Giesbrecht/The CW

Gossip Girl (The CW)

Premieres: Monday, Oct. 8 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: OMG, where do we begin? Serena helped leak Blair's diary and when their friendship crumbled, Serena started using drugs again and slept with her dealer. Blair chose Chuck, who rejected her because of the reappearance of his father, which also resulted in the end of Lily and Rufus' marriage. Dan left to work on the Infamous follow-up with Georgina. And Nate did… something. What's Next: The final 10 episodes kick off with everyone on the hunt for a missing S. Meanwhile, Blair will be determined to help Chuck take down his father. Dan's new book promises to be more scandalous than his debut, and Nate becomes dead set on revealing the real Gossip Girl.
14 of 40 Karen Neal/ABC

Grey's Anatomy (ABC)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 27 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: After a plane carrying Meredith, Derek, Cristina, Mark, Arizona and Lexie crashed in the mountains, Lexie succumbed to her injuries. Meanwhile, back at Seattle Grace, Teddy left the hospital for a new job and April was let go after failing her boards. Plus: Bailey and Ben got engaged. What's Next: The premiere will jump ahead two to three months after the finale, but don't worry: The second episode will flash back to the Stranded Six Five's rescue in the mountains. Considering many of the doctors have taken jobs elsewhere, this season will take place at Seattle Grace and at least one other hospital. Eric Dane won't return for the ninth season and the fate of Jessica Capshaw's Arizona is still up in the air, but Meredith, Cristina and Derek will definitely survive, with the latter dealing with temporarily not being able to operate because of the damage to his hand. Plus: There's a new crop of doctors, including Gaius Charles and Camilla Luddington.
15 of 40 Scott Green/NBC

Grimm (NBC)

Premieres: Monday, Aug. 13 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Juliette was in a coma after being scratched by Adalind's evil tainted cat, Hank saw a Wesen transform from creature to human form, and Nick came face-to-face with The Woman in Black, who turned out to be the mother he thought was dead all these years. What's Next: Mama Burkhardt is now working with Nick, and Hank is seeking professional help to deal with what he saw. Hank also reconnects with a childhood friend (Mark Pellegrino) who happens to be a coyotl, and a mysterious sabertooth-like Wesen on a ship will wreak havoc. On the more positive side, we'll see a lot more Rosalee since Bree Turner has been added as a series regular. Here's hoping that budding romance with Monroe develops further.
16 of 40 Richard Cartwright/ABC

Happy Endings (ABC)

Premieres: Tuesday, Oct. 23 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Brad lost his job, while Penny realized that she has feelings for Dave — but Dave had his own hand-holding moment with Alex. What's Next: Dave and Alex will give it another go, but it won't end well. At the same time, Penny will have a new boyfriend who might actually last longer than one episode. Meanwhile, unemployed Brad will have fun bumming around and we'll finally meet Alex and Jane's parents.
17 of 40 Greg Gayne/The CW

Hart of Dixie (CW)

Premieres: Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 8/7c. Where We Left Off: The season-long love triangle turned into a pentagon when George and Lemon called off their wedding. George confessed his love to Zoe, but unfortunately, it was moments after she had slept with Wade. What's Next: When George finds about Zoe and Wade, he'll skip town and ultimately move into a new home. As for the other pieces of that love pentagon? At least a couple of them wouldn’t mind taking a break from the love drama. "I want to see [Lemon's] journey of being on her own," Jamie King says. "She was so reliant on everybody, and I want her to figure out who she is beyond Lavon and George." Adds Cress Williams: "I just want to date someone who's available!"
18 of 40 Norman Shapiro/CBS

Hawaii Five-0 (CBS)

Premieres: Monday, Sept. 24 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Chin Ho had to choose between saving the life of Malia or Kono, and decided to save his wife, leaving his cousin dumped into the ocean. McGarrett learned that Shelburne was actually his presumed-dead mother. What's Next: Doris McGarrett (guest star Christine Lahti) may be back in her son's life, but it's not going to be the happiest family reunion. In fact, it will be several episodes before McGarrett even begins to trust his mom. "You want to believe that her intentions are good, but at the end of the day, there's going to be a lot of gray and a lot of questions about what she is up to," executive producer Peter Lenkov says. "She keeps a lot of secrets." Meanwhile, Chin Ho will try and save Malia. But how will Kono feel about her cousin not coming to her aid?
19 of 40 Kent Smith/Showtime

Homeland (Showtime)

Premieres: Sunday, Sept. 30 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Brody's assassination attempt against the vice president failed, but Abu Nazir gave him a new mission: Gather intel from inside the U.S. government as a congressman. After losing her job at the CIA, Carrie decided to undergo electroshock therapy to treat her bi-polar disorder (and to erase her feelings for Brody). But just before she went under, she realized the missing link between Brody and Nazir. What's Next: The story jumps ahead six months and finds Congressman Brody mulling an even more promising job opportunity all the while stealing intel at Nazir's request. And while executive producer Howard Gordon promises Carrie will "absolutely" remember her cliff-hanger realization at some point in Season 2, she begins the season working as a teacher before reluctantly taking a "one-time" assignment in Beirut with her former colleagues. "Carrie is a moth to the flame," Gordon says. "[She] knows that what she's so good at is really bad for her. That's one of the delightful tensions in her character."
20 of 40 Robert Voets/CBS

How I Met Your Mother (CBS)

Premieres: Monday, Sept. 24 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Barney proposed to Quinn, but it was revealed that he ends up marrying Robin in that future wedding where Ted meets the mother. Ted rode off into the sunset with Victoria (Ashley Williams), who left her fiancé Klaus for Ted. Lily and Marshall welcomed their son, Marvin Wait For It Eriksen. What's Next:The final minutes of the season premiere will flash-forward to Barney and Robin's wedding again and offer more details about that big day. Robin will start dating her crush from Season 6 (Michael Trucco), but neither that nor Barney and Quinn nor Ted and Victoria will last long: Creators have dubbed October "Breakup Month." Meanwhile, Lily and Marshall try to figure out how they can still keep drinking with a baby.
21 of 40 NBC

Law & Order: SVU (NBC)

Premieres: Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Season 13 ended with a jaw-dropping cliffhanger that saw Capt. Cragen wake up in bed next to a dead hooker who was connected to the squad's latest case. What's Next: Paget Brewster will guest-star as the D.A. handling Cragen's case. And while Cragen's under investigation, the squad will get a new interim captain (guest star Adam Baldwin) for at least three episodes. Suffice it to say: Benson & Co. won't enjoy taking orders from the new guy.
22 of 40 Sonja Flemming/CBS

The Mentalist (CBS)

Premieres: Sunday, Sept. 30 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Patrick Jane got close to a Vegas cocktail waitress named Lorelei (guest star Emmanuelle Chriqui), who was actually a Red John disciple who promised to take Jane to meet his nemesis. Although it was all a ruse that got Wainwright killed, the CBI does have Lorelei in custody, giving them a link to Red John. What's Next: Jane promised last season to make Lorelei "sing like a bird," and creator Bruno Heller says Jane will show a darker side in his interrogation efforts. But now that the FBI is certain Red John is still alive, Jane and the whole team will have even more Feds (guest stars Polly Walker and Ivan Sergei) breathing down their necks.
23 of 40 Peter "Hopper" Stone/ABC

Modern Family (ABC)

Premieres: Wednesday, Sept. 26 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Cam and Mitchell missed out on a chance to adopt a new baby, but — surprise! — Gloria discovered she was pregnant! Meanwhile, Haley got into college! What's Next: Season 4 opens with the rest of the family learning about Gloria's big news. Naturally Jay will be a little stressed out about being a father again, and poor Cam and Mitchell will be sad/jealous that their wait for a second child continues. The big question: How will big brother Manny react? And the bigger question: Can Haley survive college?
24 of 40 Richard Cartwright/CBS

NCIS (CBS)

Premieres: Tuesday. Sept. 25 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Blaming NCIS for his son's death on a Navy ship, eccentric businessman Harper Dearing (guest star Richard Schiff) organized a number of attacks on the Navy's fleet before ultimately setting off a car bomb outside NCIS headquarters. Upon hearing the news in Florida, medical examiner Ducky had a heart attack. What's Next: Don't worry: Everyone will make it out alive. But the emotional impact of the shared near-death experience will set the tone for the entire season. "There's a theme [of] 'Fallen Heroes,'" executive producer Gary Glasberg says. "We've got these people who've been knocked down and they have to pick themselves up again. … [For Ducky], physically, can he do it? It's an eye-opening experience for him." Plus: Glasberg promises a "kick-ass" showdown between Gibbs and Dearing as well as return visits from Abby's brother and DiNozzo's father. Oh, and Tony and Ziva are trapped in an elevator!
25 of 40 Ron P. Jaffe/CBS

NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS)

Premieres: Tuesday. Sept. 25 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: NCIS once again tangled with The Chameleon (guest star Christopher Lambert ), who, after killing Agents Renko and Hunter, the team had to release in order to protect an asset in the Middle East. But before he handed him over, Callen shot The Chameleon in broad daylight and was arrested. Meanwhile, Hetty resigned once again. What's Next: The show will pick up the very next day, with Callen having been suspended from duty while he's under investigation. Needless to say, tension between team members will be at an all-time high. "There's clearly friction for everyone to see," executive producer Shane Brennan says. "We've never seen them argue like this and Callen just wants to be left alone. … The deeper we get into this story the further Callen seems to fall." And this time, Hetty may not be there to bring him back. "Hetty lost two agents at the end of last season," Brennan says. "Seeing what Callen has done has the same impact. [She feels] you reach a point…where the best thing you can hope is that it's the other guy that dies and you're the one who walks away. That's why she's done what she's done."
26 of 40 Patrick McElhenney/Fox

New Girl (Fox)

Premieres: Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Although Nick considered moving back in with his ex-girlfriend, he freaked out about cohabitating and, after a drive to the desert in a U-Haul, decided to stay put. Meanwhile, Schmidt broke up with Cece, believing she would be better off without him. What's Next: Jess will lose her job, which will bring about major life changes. "What's been great is that it kind of unhinges her," creator Liz Meriwether says. "She's really questioning every part of herself. ... That leads her to try something she's never tried before, which is to sleep with someone she hates and to continue to sleep with him." Her new "sex interest" is played by Bent's David Walton, while Josh Gad will also attempt to woo Jess later this season. Still, that doesn't mean Nick and Jess don't have a chance. Plus: Schmidt will have some competition when Cece gets a new boyfriend.
27 of 40 Ben Mark Holzberg/The CW

Nikita (The CW)

Premieres: Friday, Oct. 19 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Nikita gave in to her daddy issues and killed Percy, and the Scooby gang took over Division. What's Next: With Nikita and her CIA buddy Ryan in charge of Division now, it's a whole new face for the secret organization, which is now hunting down rogue agents. Since Alex is now a public figure, she'll figure out her own way to help them as she navigates her romance with Sean.
28 of 40 Chris Haston/NBC

The Office (NBC)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 20 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Andy returned to Dunder Mifflin in grand (read: disheveled) fashion as the reinstated branch manager under new owner David Wallace. (Robert California was subsequently booted.) Dwight and Angela shared a passionate kiss while Dwight was having the dirty diaper of Angela's baby tested for his DNA. How romantic! What's Next: Scranton's premier paper company is going to look very different with no Robert California and a lot less Kelly and Ryan. However, there will be some new faces filling the empty cubicles, including Catherine Tate, who is coming back full-time and Better with You alum Jake Lacy, who plays a new Jim-esque love interest for Erin.
29 of 40 Divid Gray/ABC

Once Upon a Time (ABC)

Premieres: Sunday, Sept. 30 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: Emma and Regina were forced to work together to save Henry's life after he ate the poisoned apple turnover meant for Emma. Emma got to the hospital just in time to witness Henry's death. Devastated, Emma kissed Henry's forehead, breaking the curse and causing everyone to remember who they truly are. But Rumpelstiltskin tricked Emma into giving him the true love potion, which he used to unleash magic upon Storybrooke. What's Next: Now that everyone remembers who they are, Season 2 will focus on redemption. (And yes, the question of why the fairy tale characters weren't transported back to fairy tale land will also be addressed.) The Charming family reunion will happen early in the season and we'll even learn the identity of Henry's birth father! Captain Hook, Sleeping Beauty, Prince Phillip, Sir Lancelot, and Mulan are among the new characters popping up this season, while Maleficent, Bae and Sheriff Graham may also return.
30 of 40 Chris Haston/NBC

Parenthood (NBC)

Premieres: Tuesday, Sept. 11 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Season 3 ended on a relatively happy note for the Bravermans: Crosby and Jasmine got hitched, Julia and Joel adopted a son, Crosby and Adam decided not to sell The Luncheonette and, in a big shocker, Mark proposed to Sarah. What's Next: While we don't know if Sarah will say yes, Mark will be back, but he'll have to fight guest star Ray Romano for her affection. Romance is also in the air for Amber, who will fall deeply in love this season, while her brother Drew suffers his first heartbreak. Julia and Joel will struggle to integrate new son Victor into the family, and Crosby and Jasmine will hit some bumps in the road as they try to define themselves as a married couple.
31 of 40 Tyler Golden/NBC

Parks and Recreation (NBC)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 20 at 9:30/8:30c Where We Left Off: After campaigning all season, Leslie Knope won the City Council election. Meanwhile, Ben was offered a job in Washington, D.C., which he accepted with Leslie's blessing. Also, Ann agreed to move in with Tom. What's Next: Parks heads to Washington D.C. in the premiere, with Leslie and Andy visiting Ben. (There will also be appearances by real-life senators Barbara Boxer, John McCain and Olympia Snowe.) Upon her return to Pawnee, Leslie will struggle to balance her role as City Councilor with her duties as a member of the Parks Department. Plus: Andy may decide to apply to the police academy — with Ron's help. As for Ann's big move, executive producer Mike Schur says Ann was drunk and may not even remember her agreement.
32 of 40 John Paul Filo/CBS

Person of Interest (CBS)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 27 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Fellow technological whiz Root (guest star Amy Acker) concocted a plan to lure Finch out of hiding so she could kidnap him. Desperate to locate his partner, Reese seemingly begins communicating directly with The Machine for information on Finch's location. What's Next: Did The Machine really call Reese in the Season 1 cliff-hanger? Seems so. "Our relationship with The Machine has been one that we haven't questioned too much," creator Jonathan Nolan says. "We think we understand what it is, but the idea in the second season is to challenge those assumptions. [We want] to take that fifth character, who's largely been a silent partner, and start [letting Reese know] how that works. 'What is The Machine, really?' is a huge question for Season 2." And although Nolan says Root is "a long-term adversary for our heroes," she will also be the audience's proxy. "She's going to demand some answers from Finch," Nolan says.
33 of 40 Karen Neal/ABC

Private Practice (ABC)

Premieres: Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: After carrying her brainless baby to term, Amelia gave birth and donated the baby's organs. Sam realized he wanted another family of his own and proposed to Addison. Although initially remorseless about the mercy killing of a patient Pete eventually changed his tune so he could be reunited with Violet. What's Next: We won't have to wait long to find out whether Addison said yes to Sam's proposal, as the series will jump ahead two to three months. Because it's likely the final season, creator Shonda Rhimes promises more ambitious episodes, including a Rashomon-inspired hour featuring a story told from different points of view. Unfortunately, we won't see Pete's point of view as Tim Daly won't return. Could his exit be related to the death coming this season?
34 of 40 Eric McCandless/ABC

Revenge (ABC)

Premieres: Sunday, Sept. 30 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: The finale provided more questions than answers: Is Victoria alive? Is Fauxmanda's baby actually Jack's? How is Emily's mother alive and what will she be like? And that's just beginning to scratch the surface! What's Next: Emily's "extremely unhinged" mother (Jennifer Jason Leigh) will enter the picture as Emily tries to understand just why she's so, well, Emily. When the series returns, it will be summer again in Southampton. Emily and Daniel will still be broken up (look for him to fool around with Ashley), Fauxmanda will be very pregnant with the child Jack believes to be his (for now) and Nolan may just find love. Also, look for a new Grayson to emerge when we meet Conrad's son from his first marriage. Watch out, Daniel!
35 of 40 Richard Foreman/ABC

Scandal (ABC)

Premieres: Thursday, Sept. 27 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: Billy Chambers tried to go live with the information about President Fitz's alleged affair. In order keep the story from spiraling out of control, Fitz's wife Mellie decided to lie to the public to save his skin. Meanwhile, it turns out Quinn Perkins isn't really named Quinn Perkins. What's Next: The question of who Quinn Perkins really is will be answered immediately in the premiere, but the new mystery becomes figuring out what happened to Quinn to make her this way and who was responsible. As for Olivia, Shonda Rhimes previously told us that she may get a new love interest and begin to move on from Fitz. Plus: Cyrus will have to tread carefully lest someone find out it was he who put out the hit on Amanda Tanner.
36 of 40 Prashant Gupta/FX

Sons of Anarchy (FX)

Premieres: Tuesday, Sept. 11 at 10/9c Where We Left Off: After Clay killed Piney, ordered a hit on Tara and beat Gemma to a bloody pulp, Jax stripped Clay of his presidency of the motorcycle club and ascended to the head of the table. In an unwitting act of retaliation against a rival gang, Tig accidentally killed the daughter of Damon Pope. What's Next: Pope (guest star Harold Perrineau) may come after the Sons, but he eventually will be a bit of an adviser for Jax. So too will Nero Padilla (guest star Jimmy Smits), a Latino gangster who hopes to teach Jax that he can eventually escape the outlaw life. "[This season] is about Jax really deciding the type of leader that he will become and being faced with the challenges of that job," creator Kurt Sutter says. "Does the nature of the outlaw world force you to be that sort of Machiavellian kind of guy who ultimately has to do things behind the club's back to protect the club? The flip side of that is: If you don't become [like] Clay, are you then perceived as weak?"
37 of 40 Richard Cartwright/ABC

Suburgatory (ABC)

Premieres: Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 9:30/8:30c Where We Left Off: When viewers last visited Chatswin, George's lady friend was about to give birth to Noah's child, Lisa had learned that her perfect brother Ryan was adopted and a lonely Tessa ran into her long lost maternal grandmother. What's Next: The show will pick up at the end of summer, with George back on the market and Tessa winding down a transforming summer spent mainly in NYC with her grandmother. Viewers will finally get to meet Tessa's elusive mom later in the year, and the time may just be right for George and Dallas to give a relationship a shot.
38 of 40 Jack Rowand/The CW

Supernatural (The CW)

Premieres: Wednesday, Oct. 3 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Dean and Castiel defeated the Dick-Roman-Leviathan, but that landed them in Purgatory, where the souls of monsters feed upon each other for eternity. Fun! What's Next: Although Dean will have spent a good chunk of time in Purgatory when the show returns, we'll catch him just as he escapes with the help of a vampire. In the meantime, Sam has been leading his own life and even found a love interest in charming veterinarian named Amelia. When the Winchester siblings reunite, they'll be on a mission for a "power source" that will run them afoul of Crowley.
39 of 40 Annette Brown/The CW

The Vampire Diaries (CW)

Premieres: Thursday, Oct. 11 at 8/7c Where We Left Off: After Elena was in a car accident, she was "saved" by Meredith using vampire blood. The catch? She must now either die or transition into a vampire. Meanwhile, Bonnie helped Klaus take over Tyler's body to save himself from being desiccated forever. What's Next: Since dying isn't an option, you can count on Elena transitioning in the first episode. As the show explores Elena's physical transformation, executive producer Julie Plec says this season will also show a lot of the emotional changes that the Mystic Falls gang will go through as they finish up their senior year. "Thematically, everything everyone is going through this season is right in line with a very human experience of reaching the end of your adolescence," she says." And as for the Tyler and Klaus situation? "We're not losing either of them, they both live to see tomorrow," Plec says. "We'll have a little bit of fun with the mistaken identity part of the story, and then we'll get Klaus back to being naughty, nasty Klaus."
40 of 40 Gene Page/AMC

The Walking Dead (AMC)

Premieres: Sunday, Oct. 14 at 9/8c Where We Left Off: Rick was forced to murder Shane — but he came back as a zombie! After narrowly escaping a zombie attack at Hershel's farm, Rick admitted that everyone is already infected and can become a zombie after death. Also, Rick's the boss, no questions asked. Meanwhile, Andrea was saved by a mysterious hooded figure. What's Next: The new season begins with the survivors trying to take a prison back from the zombies and turn it into their new safe haven. But they'll have to battle The Governor (David Morrisey), who also wants to take control of the location. Andrea will become fast friends with her savior, the katanna-wielding Michonne (Danai Gurira). Plus: the one-armed Merle will reunite with his brother Daryl, and that ominous helicopter from Season 1 will once again play an important role.