Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Fall TV will never stop, not until we’re all buried under Philadelphia, South Park, or Stumptown

Illustration for article titled Fall TV will never stop, not until we’re all buried under Philadelphia, South Park, or Stumptown
Photo: Top: It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia (Rob McElhenney/FX), Stumptown (Mitch Haaseth/ABC). Bottom: South Park (Comedy Central

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Wednesday, September 25. All times are Eastern. 


Top pick

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia (FXX, 10 p.m., 14th season premiere) and Stumptown (ABC, 10 p.m.): If you like hard-drinking, tough-talking fuckups, then it’s your lucky Wednesday.

First, Philadelphia’s finest barflys return for their 14th record-tying season premiere in “The Gang Gets Romantic,” an achievement that locks them into place alongside, of all things, The Adventures Of Ozzie And Harriet. For more on that milestone—and future ones—check out our report from a summer set visit with Rob McElhenney, Charlie Day, Glenn Howerton, Kaitlin Olson, and Danny DeVito. Dennis Perkins also returns, ready, if need be, to file his recap in the form of interpretive dance.

And then there’s Stumptown, the starring vehicle Cobie Smulders deserves. From our review:

The history of television is littered with terrific crime dramas. So far, Stumptown, adapted from Greg Rucka’s graphic novel of the same name, does not number among them. That’s okay—not every show can or should be The Shield, The Sopranos, or The Wire. It should be said that it’s also nearly impossible to gauge Stumptown’s true potential with regard to its writing and direction, as only the pilot, charmingly titled “Forget It Dex, It’s Stumptown,” was provided for review, and the episode functions as an origin story, with no real indication of how the show will work outside of this first hour (though an educated guess is easily made). But Stumptown’s primary appeal isn’t as a crime drama. It’s as a Cobie Smulders vehicle—and in that respect, it’s everything it needs to be.

She’s great, as is Jake Johnson, and they’re only two members of a great cast that includes Michael Ealy, Camryn Manheim, and Tantoo Cardinal

And yet those are but two of the many shows fall TV has hurled down upon our heads! We’ve got another big season premiere (below), plus the Suits series finale (USA, 9 p.m.), plus a cool shorts block called Cake (FXX, 10:30 p.m., series premiere), and that’s just the beginning. We are tired.


Regular coverage

Modern Family (ABC, 9 p.m): 11th season premiere
South Park (Comedy Central, 10 p.m.): 23rd season premiere
American Horror Story: 1984 (FX, 10 p.m.)


Wild card

Country Music (PBS, 8 p.m., series finale): It’s end of the road for Country Music, which stops tracing the history of the genre with 1996. So if you like this song, slip on down to the Public Broadcasting Service.

Contributor, The A.V. Club and The Takeout. Allison loves TV, bourbon, and overanalyzing social interactions. Please buy her book, How TV Can Make You Smarter (Chronicle, 2020). It’s short!