Somehow I've survived to the second week without offending too many television executives or show producers. I'll try harder next time, OK?
It's the second full week of July and the networks may be gearing up for the fall but there's still a few series offering fresh content for the summertime. NIP/TUCK, BIG BROTHER, THE AMAZING RACE, STARGATE (both SG-1 and now ATLANTIS), THE DEAD ZONE and THE 4400 all have new episodes airing this week and in the near future, so if you've already caught up with what happened on SMALLVILLE or the various CSIs (CSI: SMALLVILLE is probably just around the corner) there's plenty of new stuff to watch.
Write to me and let me know if there's a show missing from the Wasteland, or just let me know how I'm doing. I'm still finding my feet and I'm tossing ideas around for what else I can talk about; one of them is to open the discussion up to you and find out what you think of what's on TV. Ideas and suggestions are certainly welcome along with any offers of a free widescreen plasma television.
Let's look at what's being offered for retinal consumption, shall we?
MONDAY, JULY 12
FEAR FACTOR (8 PM, NBC) Joe Rogan and his posse hit Las Vegas as six contestants vie for $50K in prize money. Guess what's in the protein shake this week, kids. (Repeat)
YES, DEAR (8:30 PM, CBS) Normally I wouldn't touch this show with a ten-foot pole, but this week's episode involves Greg's Dad (Tim Conway) getting addicted to collecting Superman comic books and even dressing up as the Man of Steel in public. Inside word is that Bryan Singer is TIVOing this one episode for future reference. (Repeat)
CSI: MIAMI (10 PM, CBS) "Wannabe" The Florida forensic friends have a case jeopardized because a collector of crime scene memorabilia made off with one of their latex gloves. (Repeat)
THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (11:35 PM, NBC) Matt Damon is on to talk THE BOURNE IDENTITY with Jay. Jane Pauley is on after Matt to talk about her secret like as a professional assassin.
TUESDAY, JULY 13
NIP/TUCK (10 PM, FX) Christian gets into deep water when his wife steps up efforts to seek sole custody of their baby boy; a woman addicted to plastic surgery seeks another face lift from the docs.
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (11:30 PM, CBS) An I, ROBOT double shot
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG KILBORN (12:35 AM, CBS) Bridget Moynahan delivers the backhand and gets maximum exposure for her movie out of the eye network. She may also possibly answer five questions.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 14
SMALLVILLE (8 PM, WB) First episode: Clark is shot by a green Kryptonite bullet while saving Lex. Sadly, Jonathan's extended health coverage won't cover injuries by alien rocks. Second episode: Clark dreams about helping a comatose girl; thankfully no one shoots at him in this episode. (Repeat)
ENTERPRISE (8 PM, UPN) In "Carpenter Street", Archer and T'Pol travel back in time to 2004 Detroit and discover that their adventures are serialized each week on a television show. After that, "Chosen Realm" finds the crew taken hostage by aliens who are religious extremists. (Repeats)
THE SIMPLE LIFE 2: ROAD TRIP (9 PM, FOX) Paris and Nicole stop in Texas and get a double date with a family's two sons. What remains unknown at the present time is whether the guys took a video camera with them on their date...you know why.
THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG KILBORN (12:35 AM, CBS) DEAD ZONE fans pay note: Anthony Michael Hall is on tonight, and it's probably safe to say that he won't talk about THE BREAKFAST CLUB 2.
THURSDAY, JULY 15
STEPHEN KING'S KINGDOM HOSPITAL (9 PM, ABC) Season finale.
TRU CALLING (9 PM, FOX) Tru's new friend (AMERICAN IDOL contestant Tamrya Gray) has a fatal car accident. IDOL Judge Simon Cowell is seen emerging from underneath her car moments before the accident. Are the two events connected? Let's watch Tru find out! (Repeat)
CSI (9 PM, CBS) A champion of a Scrabble-like word game is found dead at the world tournament. Examination of the body discovers that the deceased was forced to swallow several of the game's tiles before his death. Grissom thinks quickly and arranges the tiles to form the name of another contestant, then submits this as evidence of the player's guilt. It's all smooth sailing from here. (Repeat)
FRIDAY, JULY 16
STARGATE SG-1 (7 PM, SCIFI) Last week's season premiere is repeated to prime the audience for...
STARGATE ATLANTIS (9 PM, SCI FI) Series premiere. The new
SATURDAY, JULY 17
END OF DAYS (8 PM, NBC) Did you know that Arnold Schwarzenegger had a career as an action star before he became California's governor? It's true, I swear!
THEY ARE AMONG US (9 PM, SCI FI) BABYLON 5's Bruce Boxleitner and DEEP SPACE NINE's Nana Visitor take on a race of hostile aliens that want to steal our world and make it their own. Rumor has it that the title for this show was inspired by what celebs at sci-fi cons have been known to mutter just before taking to the stage.
ABC's 50th ANNIVERSARY BLOOPER CELEBRATION 1 (10 PM, ABC) If you're at home on a Saturday night with a summer cold and too tired to watch THE RETURN OF THE KING again on DVD, this probably won't make you feel any better.
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE (11:30 PM, NBC) Jessica Simpson and hubby Nick Lachey are hosts and G-Unit is the musical guest.
SUNDAY, JULY 18
U.S. OLYMPIC TRIALS 2004 (7 PM, NBC) The build-up to the Summer Olympics broadcasts begin here as track and field athletes compete for a spot on America's team.
THE SIMPSONS (8 PM, FOX) When Bart accidentally moons the American flag, the Simpsons are branded as unpatriotic. An earlier draft of the script had the family arrested under the Patriot Act and sent for interrogation to Guantanimo Bay. That's hardcore, man. (Repeat)
THE 4400 (9 PM, USA) I wish I had more info on the show's second episode beside it's title, "The New and Improved Carl Morrissey".
THE DEAD ZONE (10 PM, USA) Johnny is asked by Sarah to find out if her husband is keeping secrets from her, and the evidence points to Walt having an affair. Dude, your wife's best friend is a guy that can find out what you're hiding by just holding your car door handle don't let your eye wander or else!
TV Wasteland is our weekly Television column.