From writer/producer Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing, The Social Network, Moneyball) comes a new series about the people behind nightly cable news. The Newsroom (10 p.m. Sundays, HBO) follows journalist Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels) and his journey from fair-and-balanced News Night anchor to cable rebel after a revealing and potentially career-ending public outburst in which he shares his opinions about news and politics. With most of his staff abandoning him, McAvoy creates a new program with his own rules.
The Newsroom poses the question, “What makes something newsworthy?” and touches on the political, corporate and commercial influence on what makes the “front page,” so to speak.
While Sorkin has claimed that none of the characters are based off actual television journalists, the series will feature true, historic news events that have occurred over the past two years. Sunday’s premiere takes place in spring 2010.
Emily Mortimer (Shutter Island, Lars and the Real Girl), Sam Waterson (“Old Glory Robot Insurance”) and Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire) round out the recognizable, versatile cast. The Newsroom looks like it will offer an interesting angle on a very timely subject, sure to be a conversation-starter with election season around the corner.
WEDNESDAY JUNE 20
Baby Daddy (Series Premiere, 8:30 p.m., ABC Family) – A bachelor finds out he’s a father when his ex leaves a baby girl on his doorstep. So, Big Daddy minus that certain’90s-Sandler je ne sais quoi.
Around the World in 80 Plates (10 p.m., Bravo) -– The remaining chefs must please locals in Thailand with their traditional dishes.
Futurama (Season Premiere, 10 p.m., Comedy Central) – Speaking of baby daddies, Bender has fathered a love-child with an office pop machine.
Meanwhile, madness ensues when an ancient text predicts the world will end in the year 3012.
FRIDAY JUNE 22
The Ricky Gervais Show (9 p.m., HBO) – The guys discuss society laws. Karl reveals how he would handle a position of authority and what he would have done had he been on the infamous bus with Rosa Parks in 1955.
Comedy Bang! Bang! (10 p.m., IFC) – Scott and Reggie welcome guest Jon Hamm who agrees to work with a film student-director.
Bunk (10:30 p.m., IFC) – Tom Lennon (Reno 911!), Nicole Parker (MADtv) and Chris Gethard (Upright Citizens Brigade) compete.
SATURDAY JUNE 23
Arachnoquake (Premiere, 9 p.m., Syfy) – Syfy continues its rich tradition of combining two crazy animals/phenomena into one ridiculous concept with a cast of washed up celebs. In Arachnoquake, a devastating earthquake unleashes lethal albino spiders from the depths of New Orleans’ terrain. Tracey Gold, Edward Furlong and Bug Hall (aka Alfalfa from 1994’s The Little Rascals!) star.
CC Stand-Up: The Bonnaroo Experience (Premiere, 11:30 p.m., Comedy Central) – Bonnaroo is obviously known as a music spectacle, but the fest’s comedy sets are awesome. If you missed this year’s ’Roo, here’s your chance. Comedians include Andy Dale, Jon Dore, Judah Friedlander, Natasha Leggero and Marc Maron. Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele host.
SUNDAY JUNE 24
True Blood (9 p.m., HBO) -– Debbie Pelt’s parents turn to Andy and Alcide in the search for their daughter; Roman decides what to do about Russell Edgington, along with Eric and Bill; Jason has an awkward run-in with a former high school teacher. Also: Hoyt in eyeliner.
Nick News With Linda Ellerbee (9 p.m., Nickelodeon) – This show is still on.
Aqua Something You Know Whatever (Season Premiere, midnight, Cartoon Network) – Aqua Teen Hunger Force gets a new intro, theme song and (hilarious) title, all which are set to change with each upcoming season.
MONDAY JUNE 25
Hell’s Kitchen (8 p.m., FOX) – Catch the conclusion of the fashion show dinner. Tuesday, Tito Ortiz and Sugar Ray Leonard serve as thematic inspiration for a cooking challenge.
MasterChef (9 p.m., FOX) – The top 14 are woken up early to serve hungry hotel guests breakfast. The following day, 13 chefs are left to create a gourmet meal on a $20 budget.
TUESDAY JUNE 26
Workaholics (10:30 p.m., Comedy Central) – Blake, Ders and Adam mourn the death of a coworker.
CONTACT JAC KERN: email@example.com or @jackern on Twitter