Treme, season premiere at 10pm on HBO
– The sophomore drama series set in post-Katrina New Orleans from the creator of The Wire was rousing watercooler fodder when it premiered last year. The series explores the lives of several struggling musicians and other New Orleans locals as they try to put their lives back together three months after Hurricane Katrina. Season 2 picks up 14 months after the federal levees failed. Much has changed in this time but many of the old problems still persist. The profiteers have arrived but the insurance checks haven’t. Also, crime is on the rise and the police’s ability to keep pace with the criminals is questionable. Life in New Orleans is getting better but not fast enough to keep people from wondering whether life would be better and easier elsewhere.
Tuesday, April 26th
The Voice, series premiere at 9pm on NBC
– NBC tries to bank on the high rating singing competition genre with a new series to search for the country’s next great Voice. Though doubtful any other series can come close to even competing with the ratings giant that is Idol, The Voice looks to do just that and has a good chance of pulling it off with an all-star panel of coaches/judges and a creative new competition format. Covering a diverse variety of musical genres, recording artists Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green, Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, and country star Blake Shelton sit on the judging panel as well as coach and mentor the contestants. The show even boasts a big-name host, Last Call’s Carson Daly, an entertainment icon in the music industry for almost two decades. The show’s innovative format features three stages of competition: the first begins with the blind audition, then the competition enters into a battle phase, and finally, the live performance. During the blind auditions, the decisions from the coaches are based solely on voice and not on looks. The coaches hear the contestants perform, but they don’t get to see them. If a coach is impressed by a contestant’s voice, he/she pushes a button to select the contestant. At this point, the coach’s chair will swivel to face the contestant selected. If more than one coach selects the talent, the power shifts to the contestant, who may choose which coach they want to work with throughout the competition. Once the teams are set, the battle is on. Coaches will dedicate themselves to developing their singers, giving them advice, and sharing the secrets of their success. During the battle rounds the coaches will pit two of their own team members against each other to sing the same song together in front of a studio audience. After the vocal face-off, the coach must choose which singers will advance. In the end, one contestant is chosen by the audience to win $100,000 and a recording contract.
Wednesday, April 27th
Inside The Royal Wedding, special at 8pm on NBC
– England’s storybook couple, Prince William and Catherine Middleton, will tie the knot on Friday in a royal ceremony certain to capture the world’s heart. Get a special insider’s look at the big day with this new NBC documentary hosted by Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira. This original special offers unprecedented access to the people, places, and traditions of the royal wedding.
South Park, season premiere at 10pm on Comedy Central
– The hit animated comedy series intended for very mature older (and also ironically immature) audiences returns for its 15th season. The show has become famous for its crude language, surreal, satirical, and dark humor that lampoons a wide range of topics. The ongoing narrative revolves around four boys—Stan Marsh, Kyle Broflovski, Eric Cartman, and Kenny McCormick—and their bizarre adventures in and around the titular Colorado town.
Thursday, April 28th
Son of a Gun, series premiere at 11pm on MTV
– MTV continues expanding its lineup with a new reality series about the tough decisions and hard work it takes to make it in the unique world of music; a raw and untamed look behind the scenes of an industry so many know, but few understand (At least this series is music-related, which is refreshing coming from the Music Television network). Cory Gunz, a rapper who previously had two major record deals with Casablanca and Def Jam, is getting his last big shot in the hard-knock world of hip-hop. Lil Wayne’s latest protégé and the son of previously famed Peter Gunz, Cory is primed to take his career to places his father was never able to go. Before his journey can begin, Cory must overcome some major problems with family and business that seem to be bubbling at the surface. First up is choosing which record label to go with and then how to assemble the team around him. However, in this industry, the lines between family, friends and business can easily be blurred. This is his last chance to show and prove that he has what it takes. In the end, this journey will be one he has to complete on his own. The show also stars Nickelodeon star, America’s Got Talent host, and most importantly Mariah Carey’s husband Nick Cannon who has taken Cory under his wing and used his connections to open doors for Cory.
Friday, April 29th
The Royal Wedding, wedding of the century from 6 to 7 am on all major networks
– The overly hyped wedding of the century is finally upon us as Prince William marries Kate Middleton in an extravagant ceremony at Westminster Abbey in London, that’s just how the royals roll. The buzz and media frenzy indicates that ratings will go through the roof and upstage the 750 million that tuned in for Prince Charles and Diana’s televised ceremony 30 years ago despite the fact the ceremony is in the brutal morning hours before we’ve had our coffee. ABC will have a six-hour long Good Morning America with Barbara Walters and Diane Sawyer anchoring live from Buckingham Palace while Robin Roberts co-anchors live from the Abbey. CBS will have Katie Couric headlining its live coverage. And in case you slept in and missed seeing the nuptials live, Couric will host the one-hour special The Royal Wedding: Modern Majesty at 8pm while NBC’s Dateline and ABC’s 20/20 offer their nuptials specials from 9 to 11pm.
Kathy Griffin’s Insightful and Hilarious Take on the Royal Wedding, special at 8pm on TV Guide
– Enjoy the always fabulous Kathy Griffin and her guest panel of Jackie Collins, twin comedians Randy and Jason Sklar, and Anderson Cooper 360 producer Jack Gray, who will give their less-than-reverent analysis of the day’s pomp and circumstance.