If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to watch less television, you should know that television does not intend to let you go quietly.
January, that month when good intentions so often get derailed, will usher in more than a dozen new series and even more returning shows. The month’s highlights include the latest installment of True Detective, a live Rent, and a spin-off of The Goldbergs from Jenkintown’s Adam F. Goldberg.
Here’s some of what you can look forward to:
The Orville. Family Guy creator Seth MacFarlane’s quirky homage to Star Trek is back for a second season, sneaking in on Sunday to beat the January rush before moving to its regular time slot. 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 30, Fox. Moves to 9 p.m. Thursdays on Jan. 3.
Love, Gilda. Documentary on the late Saturday Night Live veteran Gilda Radner — the first person Lorne Michaels hired for the Not Ready for Prime Time Players more than 40 years ago — includes some of her SNL successors reading from her diary. 9 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 1, CNN.
The Masked Singer. Would you recognize a famous person’s singing voice if the singer were dressed from head to toe like a creature from a fever dream? Here’s your chance to find out. 9 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 2, Fox.
Gotham. The fifth and final season of the Batman prequel series begins, and it’s expected that by the end, young Bruce Wayne (David Mazouz) will also be the Caped Crusader. 8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 3, Fox.
The Blacklist. I’m afraid I’ve mostly lost track of this ever more complicated story — is it true that James Spader’s character isn’t who he’s claimed to be for five seasons? — but I can understand why those who are still hooked on it will need a two-night season premiere to become reacquainted after a longish absence. I’ve seen only the first five minutes, but Spader, whoever he’s playing, is as entertaining as ever. 10 p.m. Thursday and 9 p.m. Friday, Jan. 3 and 4, NBC.
Good Trouble. Spin-off of The Fosters has Callie (Maia Mitchell) and Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) moving out on their own into an apartment in downtown Los Angeles. 8 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 8, Freeform.
Project Blue Book. Aiden Gillen (Game of Thrones) and Michael Malarkey (The Vampire Diaries) star in a drama produced by Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Contact) about the U.S. Air Force’s investigations of UFO reports in the 1950s and ’60s. Gillen plays astronomer J. Allen Hynek, who really did conduct such research. Hired to debunk the reports, he eventually came to believe some couldn’t be explained away. Stories are drawn from real cases he investigated. 10 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 8, History Channel.
Schooled. This much-anticipated spin-off of The Goldbergs was cocreated by Jenkintown’s Adam F. Goldberg. It takes place in “1990-something” and focuses on the teachers of “William Penn Academy,” some of whose characters were inspired by — and named for — the people who taught Goldberg when he was a student at Philly’s William Penn Charter School. Goldbergs alumni Tim Meadows, Bryan Callen, and AJ Michalka star. 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 9, ABC.
You’re the Worst. The final season of TV’s best antiromantic comedy launches, and we find Gretchen (Aya Cash) and Jimmy (Chris Geere) planning a wedding (and torturing wedding planners). What could possibly go right? 10 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 9, FXX.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine. SNL veteran Andy Samberg is back on the network where his TV stardom began, as the police comedy switches networks after being canceled at Fox. 9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 10, NBC.
Fam. Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries) and Tone Bell (Whitney) star in a new comedy about a woman named Clem (Dobrev) who’s overcome a dysfunctional childhood to make a good life for herself. On the cusp of forming a new family with her fiance, Nick (Bell), she decides to take in her wild child of a half-sister, Shannon (Odessa Adlon, Nashville). Look for Philadelphian-by-marriage Sheryl Lee Ralph — her husband is State Sen. Vincent Hughes — as Clem’s future mother-in-law. 9:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 10, CBS.
Informer. British drama alert: Nabhaan Rizwan stars as the London-born son of Pakistani parents in a six-episode thriller in which his character, who has no ties to terror suspects, is coerced into becoming a confidential informant. His handler is a former undercover cop (Paddy Considine) who still has something to hide. Friday, Jan. 11, Amazon.
Sex Education. And more from across the pond: Dramedy stars Gillian Anderson as a sex therapist with an embarrassed teenage son, Otis (Asa Butterfield, Hugo), who nevertheless ends up opening an unlicensed, but seemingly effective, practice of his own at his high school. Billed as a coming-of-age series, it’s explicit enough that you might squirm while watching with anyone not already of age (and maybe even then), but Butterfield is adorable. Friday, Jan. 11, Netflix.
True Detective. Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali (Moonlight, Green Book) stars in the third installment of Nic Pizzolatto’s anthology series, which kicks off with two back-to-back episodes. Ali plays a retired detective with memory issues who’s asked to look back at the biggest case of his career for a true-crime documentary. Stephen Dorff plays his partner on the case and Carmen Ejogo (Selma) his wife, a schoolteacher and writer, in a story told over three different periods in their lives. 9 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 13, HBO
Victoria on Masterpiece. Jenna Coleman returns for a third season as the still-young (and again pregnant) queen, for whom the revolutions of 1848 pose challenges both personal and professional. Monarchies are toppling across Europe, sending some of her relatives fleeing and fueling sentiment in Britain against the status quo. We also meet the queen’s half-sister, Princess Feodora (Kate Fleetwood), who’s a real piece of work. 9 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 13, WHYY12.
Valley of the Boom. Remember Netscape? Halt and Catch Fire meets The Big Short in this docudrama about the internet boom of the 1990s that uses a variety of comic devices to explain things like the browser wars. Stars include Bradley Whitford, Lamorne Morris, and Steve Zahn. 9 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 13, National Geographic Channel.
The Passage. Mark-Paul Gosselaar and Saniyya Sidney (Hidden Figures) star as a federal agent and the young girl he bonds with after he’s sent to kidnap her in a Ridley Scott-produced thriller. Fans of the best-selling Justin Cronin trilogy about a secret medical experiment that goes very, very wrong could be justifiably skeptical of any network’s ability to pull off a story this sprawling, but Liz Heldens' adaptation, which reimagines some major characters, makes good use of the chemistry between Gosselaar and Sidney. 9 p.m. Monday, Jan. 14, Fox.
Roswell, New Mexico. Less a reboot of the old WB/UPN teen drama Roswell than a new adaptation of Melinda Metz’s young-adult novel series Roswell High, the new, slightly more adult version stars Jeanine Mason as Liz Ortecho, a biomedical researcher who returns to her UFO-mad hometown 10 years after her sister’s death. There she discovers that Max (Nathan Dean Parsons), the guy she liked in high school, is a policeman now — and, oh, by the way, he’s also an extraterrestrial, one of three in town. There’s a murder mystery as well as an immigration story line (Liz’s father is undocumented) that pairs well with the story of the show’s trio of outsiders trying to hide in plain sight. 9 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15, CW.
Deadly Class. Set in 1980s San Francisco, this drama based on a best-selling graphic novel stars Benjamin Wadsworth as Marcus, an orphaned, homeless teen who’s recruited into a private school where crime lords send their children, apparently to learn the family business, and the headmaster, Master Lin (Benedict Wong), believes that “some people deserve to die.” Let’s just say this place makes Hogwarts look like a nursery school. 10 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 16, Syfy.
Star Trek: Discovery. Second-season premiere of the latest installment in the Star Trek franchise, available only on CBS’s subscription streaming platform. 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 17, CBS All Access.
Grace and Frankie. The fifth season of the all-star comedy cocreated by Broomall’s Marta Kauffman (Friends) picks up with Grace (Jane Fonda) and Frankie (Lily Tomlin) still between the retirement home they fled and the beach house their children sold out from under them. Meanwhile, their two exes (Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston) are caught by their children in a particularly awkward situation. RuPaul guest-stars. Friday, Jan. 18, Netflix.
Black Monday. If following the daily gyrations of the stock market isn’t your idea of comedy, maybe a look back at the stock market crash of 1987 would be funnier? Don Cheadle, Regina Hall, and Andrew Rannells star in a half-hour comedy produced by Seth Rogen that’s all about the excesses of the ’80s. 10 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 20, Showtime.
Broad City. Fifth and final season premiere of the comedy created by and starring Ilana Glazer and Wayne’s Abbi Jacobson. 10 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 24, Comedy Central.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. These are the final episodes in the Tina Fey- and Robert Carlock-created comedy about an upbeat kidnapping victim (Ellie Kemper) who’s restarting her interrupted life in Manhattan. Friday, Jan. 25, Netflix.
Rent. Producer and University of Pennsylvania grad Marc Platt brings Jonathan Larson’s Tony- and Pulitzer-winning musical to television with a performance that will be live on the East Coast. 7 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 27, Fox.
I Am the Night. From Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins comes a twisted six-episode mini-series inspired by a story that’s stranger than most fiction. When teenager Fauna Hodel (India Eisley) discovers that the black mother who raised her wasn’t actually her mother, her search for her white birth family leads her into an even deeper mystery involving one of Los Angeles' most notorious murders. Chris Pine costars as a reporter obsessed with the man he believes killed Elizabeth Short in what came to be known as the murder of the “Black Dahlia.” 9 p.m. Monday, Jan. 28, TNT.