TV chat: What will be funny this fall?

NBC’s “The Michael J. Fox Show” is slated to run on Thursdays this fall.
Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images
NBC’s “The Michael J. Fox Show” is slated to run on Thursdays this fall.

Globe TV critic Matthew Gilbert chatted with readers Friday on Here are excerpts.

Q. What about the new fall comedies? Anything you’re curious about?

A. I’m curious about “The Michael J. Fox Show.” Could be fun, if they don’t hammer the Parkinson’s jokes too much. He’s done that material on “Curb Your Enthusiasm” and on “The Good Wife.” And he should do some on his own show. But it can’t be the only focus of the series, or it will get old. It’s on Thursdays on NBC, along with Sean Hayes’s show, “Sean Saves the World.”


I’m also curious about the CBS Robin Williams sitcom, “The Crazy Ones.” Will he be annoying? Cute? Hyper? Schmaltzy? I’m an Andy Samberg fan, so his “Brooklyn Nine-West” on Fox appeals.

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Q. Sean Hayes’s new show looks terrible!

A. I agree, although it’s ALWAYS risky to judge from trailers. I liked him a lot on “Will & Grace,” but, well, I may I prefer him in supporting roles.

Q. The Robin Williams show is looking like a winner, if it’s not just “Let Robin be Robin.”

A. I’m wondering if they can find a way to make him palatable on a weekly basis. The “Mork & Mindy” era of comedy is very over. That kind of super-broad stuff doesn’t work these days, for the most part.


Q. Any summer shows stand out?

A. I’m excited about the Stephen King miniseries “Under the Dome,” and I’m looking forward to “Ray Donovan” on Showtime with Liev Schreiber and John Voight. Plus, oh yeah, the return of “Breaking Bad” on Aug. 11.

Q. Speaking of summer shows, doesn’t “Dexter” start in July?

A. Dexter premieres on June 30, with “Ray Donovan.”

Q. Thoughts on Seth Meyers taking over “Late Night”?


A. It’s always hard to predict. I thought Jimmy Fallon was a disaster his first week in late night. And he was. And yet, now, he’s excellent. He found his groove. Meyers just might work, especially if the material stays strong and he gets good writers behind him.

Q. Meyers is the head writer for “Saturday Night Live,” so next season should be interesting.

A. Yes indeed. I’m thinking it might not be a bad thing if Fred Armisen and Jason Sudeikis join Meyers and Bill Hader in leaving, too. Maybe a clean slate is in order at this point. And a few of the newer members are promising. I’ve been liking Kate McKinnon a lot, and Cecily Strong, too.

Q. Rayna on “Nashville” is going have whole lot of explaining to do now that her older daughter knows her father is not her biological father.

A. Yes, true. I’m afraid Deacon is not going to forgive Rayna for keeping that a secret, thus giving the writers a reason to pull them apart again. They have to be apart, don’t they, for the show to maintain romantic tension?

Q. When does “The Newsroom” return?

A. It’s back on July 14.

Q. What happened to Bravo? I used to enjoy their shows, but now it feels like the “Housewives” network.

A. Yeah, Bravo’s moment is starting to pass, I think. Reality TV viewers may be burning out on these fake fake fake reality shows where you laugh at everyone. You don’t bond with those characters in the way you bond with scripted characters. You come back to maybe “The Good Wife” for Alicia or to “Glee” for Kurt or Finn, because you’ve grown attached; but you don’t tend come back to the “Real Housewives” because you’re so fond of one of the exchangeable dolls.

Matthew Gilbert can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.