The Amazing Race The Amazing Race

Amazing Race 15
8/7c CBS
The Emmy-winning series, which last Sunday nabbed its seventh consecutive reality-competition trophy, launches its 15th season with 12 teams in Los Angeles. While that's one pair more than usual, only 11 duos will fly to Tokyo on the race's first leg. Why? One team is eliminated before leaving the starting line. Participants include two members of the Harlem Globetrotters, a man with Asperger's syndrome, a pair of professional poker players, gay brothers, and Miss America 2004, Erika Dunlap, who is half of the show's first interracial married couple. — Tim Holland

The National Parks: America's Best Idea
8/7c PBS
Ken Burns' beautifully filmed, 12-hour history of one of America's greatest — and, in some respects, most radical — ideas, its national parks, opens in 1851, when industrialists and preservations locked horns over the future of California's pristine Yosemite Valley. The second hour tells the story of Yellowstone, which became the first national park in 1872. — Jeff Gemmill

Desperate Housewives
9/8c ABC
Who'd Mike marry? You'll find out in tonight's Season 6 opener. Who's new? The Bolens: Nick (Jeffrey Nordling) and Angie (Drea de Matteo) and their teen son, Danny (Beau Mirchoff). They bring with them as many secrets as did the Mayfairs and Applewhites before them. Who's back? Julie Mayer and Carlos' firecracker niece Ana (Maiara Walsh). Who's cheating? Bree and Karl. And who's pregnant again? Who else. And she's expecting another set of twins! No wonder Tom's having another midlife crisis. — Paul Droesch

Cleveland Show
8:30/7:30c Fox
How's this for a concept: a Seth MacFarlane cartoon about a nice guy? Cleveland (voice of Mike Henry), the amiable schlub on The Family Guy, gets a spin-off of his own that features family values (as many as can fit into a TV-14 show, at any rate). It's set in Cleveland's hometown, Stoolbend, Va., where he and Cleveland Jr. settle down with Donna Tubbs (Sanaa Lathan), the girl from high school who always knew that Cleveland was the guy for her but couldn't resist the flashy Federline Jones (Jamie Kennedy). — Paul Droesch

9/8c Showtime
Season 4 in the slice-of-death adventures of Dexter, the dispatcher of unpunished murderers, hits the ground running. He now has a wife, two stepkids and a new baby who is keeping him up all night, and just might be the death of him, as the constant fatigue renders him sloppy on the job...and in his killer side job. This time around, Special Agent Frank Lundy (Keith Carradine) returns, and he's on the trail of a heinous homicidal maniac (played with creepy menace by John Lithgow) dubbed the Trinity Killer because he kills in threes. — Ray Stackhouse