* THE MOB DOCTOR. 9 p.m. Monday, Fox 29.
* REVOLUTION. 10 p.m. Monday, NBC10.
LEAPS OF faith (and logic) abound Monday as two networks get a head start on their drama lineups, with the premieres of Fox's "The Mob Doctor" and NBC's "Revolution."
Fox had big shoes to fill after eight seasons of "House," in which Hugh Laurie starred as a brilliant, Vicodin-addicted diagnostician who used to order break-ins at his patients' homes.
It's hard to top that.
And so "The Mob Doctor" multitasks. It's a doctor show with car chases! It's a mob show with medical stories! It's two insanely intense dramas in one!
And if that's not enough, there's also the hint of a story that goes back many years - for those who like their episodic TV with a touch of mystery.
Jordana Spiro ("My Boys") plays Grace Devlin, a gutsy surgical resident from Chicago's South Side who moonlights as a mob fix-it woman in the most earnestly silly show of the fall.
One minute Grace is in a veterinarian's office, removing a screwdriver from the skull of a guy who has reasons, beyond lack of insurance, for wanting to avoid an ER. The next, she's back in her shiny hospital, arguing for the right to perform a cutting-edge procedure on a guy who just happens to be in witness protection and is being prepped to testify against her other boss.
Can you say conflict of interest?
Grace, it turns out, thrives on conflict - and not just ethical ones. In the spirit of TV doctors everywhere, she challenges authority and ignores rules she believes to be against her patients' interests.
When she drags her gynecologist boyfriend (Zach Gilford, "Friday Night Lights") into a lie to protect someone from the old neighborhood, he complains, "This isn't legal."
"Then it's a good thing we're not lawyers," she replies.
She's right. Because that really would be exhausting.
Not as exhausting, of course, as life without electricity.
There are days when I think the republic might be better off without the hot-and-cold-running commentary of 24-hour cable news, but in NBC's "Revolution," the talking heads aren't the only ones who've been unplugged and the nation isn't faring so well.
Set 15 years after a blackout - a total technology meltdown of mysterious origin and from which we've even more mysteriously never recovered - "Revolution" suggests that most of us would be so lost without our iPhones and electric lights that the United States of America would cease to exist.
This sets the stage for a show in which new governments are springing up, policed by militias, and in which a family that may hold the key to the secret behind the blackout becomes a target of the new authority.
Tracy Spiridakos ("Being Human") plays Charlie, who goes in search of a long-lost uncle (Billy Burke) after her brother Danny (Graham Rogers) is taken captive by a militia captain (Giancarlo Esposito, "Breaking Bad").
Coming from J.J. Abrams' Bad Robot Productions ("Lost," "Fringe") and Eric Kripke ("Supernatural"), "Revolution" doesn't feel the need to explain itself immediately, trusting that the people who've watched "Jericho" and "Lost," "Falling Skies" and "The Walking Dead," will climb aboard even a horse-drawn wagon if it seems to be headed in an interesting direction.
I'm generally a sucker for shows in which humans try to reorganize themselves after large disruptions - even disruptions that don't involve moving islands and polar bears - but I also remember "FlashForward." And "The Event."
And so while I'm intrigued, I'd prefer to be carrying something stronger than a candle before I head too far down this particular rabbit hole.
This year's Everybody's a Critic panel, 20
and Philly.com readers ranging in age from 26 to 60, appeared to be a bit more willing to embrace "Revolution" than I am, awarding the pilot an average score of 8.3 on a scale of one to 10.
"This show draws an emotional connection better than 'Falling Skies' does," wrote Danny Bauder, of Holme Circle.
"I would say this is an absolute must-see for the fall," wrote Nefertiti Carney, of Brewerytown.
" 'I Am Legend' meets 'Hunger Games.' With no electricity . . . I absolutely love it so far," wrote Terrell Aiken, of North Philadelphia.
"This will be my new show for the season," wrote Marcia Pruett, of Darby.
" 'Hawaii Five-0' will now be DVRed," wrote Laura Rhoads, of Haddonfield, N.J.
Not that everyone was ready to commit.
"This is the type of addicting show you worry about getting invested in," wrote Kameron Cerrato, of South Philadelphia. "Have a feeling if you miss one episode you will be totally lost. No pun intended."
"So after the power goes out, everyone will be ridiculously fit, in stylish clothes, and with $50 haircuts? Works for me," wrote Rich Urbani, of Bella Vista.
"The premise could be a springboard for a more interesting look at our reliance on technology, though I fear if it did, it would not be subtle," wrote Bart Everts, of Rittenhouse Square, who added, "I likely won't watch."