While a compelling season of broadcast network TV will draw to a close with the end of May sweeps, cable TV is preparing to heat up the small screen this summer with plenty of returning series. Here, catch up on where your cable faves left off and find out what's coming up. For even more dish, the May 29 issue of TV Guide magazine is mandatory reading. Seriously, we mean it. Go buy one pronto!
Six Feet Under (HBO, Mondays, 9pm/ET; returns June 6)
Where we left off: After discovering that his wife, Lisa, had been murdered by her brother-in-law, Nate proposed to girlfriend Brenda.
Coming soon: Brenda and Nate (Rachel Griffiths and Peter Krause) are now married and expecting a baby. David (Michael C. Hall) and Keith (Mathew St. Patrick) ponder adoption.
(Showtime, Sundays, 10pm/ET; returns May 22)
Where we left off: Last season Michael (Hal Sparks) and Ben (Robert Gant) got married, Brian (Gale Harold) battled cancer and Justin (Randy Harrison) headed for Hollywood. In last week's season premiere, Brian bought the Babylon club and baby Jenny Rebecca's three parents fought over custody.Coming soon: Rosie O'Donnell plays an abused wife who replaces Debbie (Sharon Gless) at the diner, chubby Ted (Scott Lowell) undergoes an extreme makeover and Brian's reign as Pittsburgh's top hunk is threatened by a new stud. In its final season, look for breakups, reconciliations, an unexpected marriage, a bombing and the geographical breakup of the Liberty Avenue gang. The 4400
(USA Network, Sundays, 9pm/ET; returns June 5)
Where we left off: The 4400 missing people were revealed to have been taken by humans from the distant future and returned with special powers needed for an impending catastrophe.Coming soon: The formidable Nina Jarvis (Samantha Ferris) takes over the Homeland Security unit. For better or worse, Lily (Laura Allen) has her baby. Shawn (Patrick Flueger) gets close to Collier (Billy Campbell), who has written a tell-all book about being one of the 4400. Agent Skouris (Jacqueline McKenzie) adopts returnee Maia (Conchita Campbell) and deals with her visiting sister (Natasha Wagner). Sharif Atkins and Robert Picardo show up as 4400 members in a season that brings religion, politics and a growing evil force. Strong Medicine
(Lifetime, Sundays, 9pm/ET; returns June 12)
Where we left off: Jonas (Nestor Carbonell) proposed to Lu (Rosa Blasi) and she accepted. Andy (Patricia Richardson, who left the show) defended herself in the Senate and was appointed surgeon general.Coming soon: Lu gets a new partner when Rick Schroder joins the cast as brash, button-pushing Dylan West. He's a specialist in women's health issues but has ulterior reasons for taking the job at Rittenhouse. Lu, devoted to her work in the inner city, will struggle with the idea of marrying a multimillionaire. Rescue Me
(FX, Tuesdays, 10pm/ET; returns June 21)
Where we left off: Off-the-wagon alcoholic Tommy Gavin (Denis Leary) suffered an emotional one-two punch: His fellow firefighters beat him up for sleeping with a fallen comrade's widow, and his ex-wife split town with their kids in tow.Coming soon: A major shock occurs in the season premiere's first 10 minutes. Meanwhile, Tommy gets transferred to a sleepy Staten Island firehouse, tries to sober up and may eventually reunite with his ex. Monk
(USA Network, Fridays, 10pm/ET; returns July 8)Where we left off: Germaphobic detective Adrian Monk (Tony Shalhoub) was getting closer to his new assistant Natalie (Traylor Howard), whose life he saved.Coming soon: John Turturro returns as Monk's agoraphobic brother, Ambrose. Monk's murdered wife, Trudy (Melora Hardin), seems to return from the dead.