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Summer may be dullsville when it comes to major network programming, but it’s an exciting time for Cable. Those smart executives take full advantage of viewers rerun fatigue and desire for something new to watch when their favorite network shows are in re-runs, or not on the air at all. This summer, our favorite cable channels have raised the bar for new programs, some so beautifully produced that network execs are really starting to worry. But don’t take our word for it-grab that remote and check out some of these wonderful shows airing right now on a cable station right in your living room. P.S. people- the following list is not complete, so keep your eyes and ears open for other delicious morsels coming your way this summer! (All listings in alphabetical order by Channel)

AMC

Mad Men
Original Series – Premieres Thursday July 19, 2007
Set in 1960 New York City, “Mad Men” pulls the viewer into an unexpected new world -- the high-powered and glamorous "Golden Age" of advertising -- where everyone is selling something and nothing is ever what you expect it to be. The drama unfolds around Don Draper, the biggest ad man (and ladies man) in the business. As he calls the shots in the boardroom and the bedroom, he struggles to stay a step ahead of the rapidly changing times and the young executives nipping at his heels. The 13-episode, one-hour original series is produced by Lionsgate in association with AMC. Starring Jon Hamm, John Slattery, Vincent Kartheiser, Elisabeth Moss, January Jones, Kristina Hendricks

Human Weapon


Series- Premieres July 20, 2007
A remarkable journey across the globe to reveal the history behind one of humankind’s most ancient skills: the art of hand-to-hand combat. Hosts Jason Chambers – mixed-martial artist and professional fighter, and Bill Duff, former professional football player and wrestler, embark on a mission to explore the history and practice of these time-honored combat arts. Together, Jason and Bill fold back the rich historical and cultural layers of Muay Thai, Eskrima, Judo, Karate, Savate and more. Each week, they absorb the singular national history and traditions, while learning how each location gave birth to its distinct form of combat. Jason Chamber, Bill Duff- Host

BBC America

Jekyll
Series: Premieres August 4, 2007
Jekyll, described by writer Steven Moffat (“Doctor Who”), as “somewhere between a modern horror story and “The Odd Couple”,” is set in the present day and stars James Nesbitt (“Match Point”, “Bloody Sunday”) in the title role. Dr. Jekyll is a modern man with an old problem — Mr. Hyde. But he’s done a deal with his own devil — a body share — and keeps his dark side in check with the very latest surveillance hardware. Just barely keeping one step ahead of his alter-ego, Jekyll has managed to keep his wife and two kids a secret from the vicious Hyde. But what neither of them knows is that an organization with limitless wealth and power is monitoring their every move. James Nesbitt-Starring as both Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Hotel Babylon
Series: Premieres August 8, 2007
Decadence and debauchery are all part of the package in “Hotel Babylon”, a drama series inspired by Imogen Edwards-Jones' novel about life behind the scenes at London’s top-class hotels. Deputy Manager Charlie Edwards is the viewers’ guide to what’s behind the glittering chandeliers in this exposé of a hedonistic world, where, for just one night, guests can live their dream. Starring Max Beesley

CMT

Ty Murray’s Celebrity Bull-Riding Challenge
Series – Premieres August 10, 2007
Hosted by accomplished rodeo athlete and seven-time All-Around World Champion Ty Murray, this series follows nine celebrities, including Vanilla Ice (Rob Van Winkle), Leif Garrett, Stephen Baldwin, Rocket (Raghib) Ismail, Kenny Bartram, “Nitro” Dan Clark, Jonny (Dalton) Fairplay, Josh Haynes and Francesco Quinn, as they try and master this dangerous and fascinating sport.

DISCOVERY

Man Vs. Wild
Premieres Sunday July 29, 2007
In Man vs. Wild, host Bear Grylls, a former member of the British Army Special Forces, strands himself in popular wilderness destinations where tourists often find themselves lost or in danger. Armed with only the basics –- a knife, a water bottle and a flint –- he demonstrates local survival techniques while finding his way back to civilization. From drinking water to stave off dehydration wrung from elephant dung, to removing his clothes in frigid temperatures to prevent hypothermia, Bear goes to the extreme to show viewers unique tips that may just help them to survive. Bear Grylls-Host

DISNEY/ABC Cable

High School Musical 2
Movie – Premieres August 17, 2007
In this contemporary musical sequel, the Wildcats are back, and this time, school's out and East High School hoops star Troy Bolton, A-student Gabriella Montez and the rest of the "Wildcats" are getting ready for a fun summer vacation. But that all changes when scheming drama queen Sharpay Evans uses her dad's connections to get Troy a job at their ritzy country club -– and a chance at a college basketball scholarship. The catch? He'll have to turn his back on his friends and pair up with Sharpay in a musical extravaganza for the club's annual talent show. But when Gabriella and the Wildcats starting making plans without Troy, he must decide where his loyalties truly lie. Starring Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, Lucas Grabeel, Corbin Bleu, Monique Coleman

FX

Damages
Series: Premieres Tuesday, July 24, 2007
“Damages” is a legal thriller set in the world of New York City high-stakes litigation. The series, which provides a view into the true nature of power and success, follows the turbulent lives of Patty Hewes (Glenn Close) the nation’s most revered and reviled high-stakes litigator and her bright, ambitious protégé Ellen Parsons (Rose Byrne) as they become embroiled in a class action lawsuit targeting the allegedly corrupt Arthur Frobisher (Ted Danson), one of the country’s wealthiest CEOs. As Patty battles with Frobisher and his attorney Ray Fiske (Ċ½eljko Ivanek), Ellen Parsons will be front and center witnessing just what it takes to win at all costs, as it quickly becomes clear that lives, as well as fortunes, may be at stake. Starring Glenn Close, Rose Byrne, Tate Donovan, Ted Danson

GAME SHOW Network

Grand Slam
Series – Premieres Saturday August 4, 2007
Grand Slam is an eight episode head-to-head single elimination tournament featuring America’s top 16 game show contestants competing for a $100,000 grand prize. The series, hosted by Dennis Miller, is the fastest and most intense game show ever created. In this game not only is the contestant’s general knowledge put to the test, but so are their math and logic skills, their ways with words and letters, and their grasp of pop culture and current events. Very exciting! Starring Ken Jennings, Thom McKee, Amanda Byram

HALLMARK Channel

Claire
Movie: Premieres August 11, 2007
A suburban soccer mom reluctantly uses her clairvoyant powers to solve a cold case in which a serial murderer threatens to strike again. Starring Valerie Bertinelli

HBO

As You Like It
Premieres Tuesday, August 21, 2007
HBO Films presents director Kenneth Branagh’s imaginative and playful adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic, set in 19th century Japan, which celebrates the enduring power of love in all its many disguises. The story is a compelling romantic adventure in which Rosalind and Orlando’s celebrated courtship is played out against a backdrop of political rivalry, banishment and exile in the Forest of Arden. It marks Branagh’s fifth Shakespearean screen adaptation. Starring Bryce Dallas Howard, Kevin Kline, David Oyelowo

Flight of the Conchords
Series: Premieres June 17, 2007
“Flight of the Conchords” focuses on the adventures of transplanted New Zealanders Jemaine and Bret, who live on New York City’s Lower East Side. They split their time between seeking venues where they can perform and awkwardly courting women they meet on the street or at parties. Sometimes finding it easier to express themselves with music, they are apt to break into song at a moment’s notice. Starring Jemaine Clement, Bret McKenzie

IFC TV

The Business
Comedy Series – Season Two Premieres August 5, 2007@ 11pm et
“The Business” follows the same ensemble cast of characters from Season One on another misadventure in indie film-land. After successfully changing gears from smut peddling to authentic indie filmmaking, Vic’s Flicks’ respectability and reputation are on the rise. Following the surprising box office success of their latest indie-thriller, “House of Fear,” producer Julia Sullivan (Kathleen Robertson) moves their team into stylish new offices and goes to work as they try to prove, against steadily increasing odds, that “House of Fear” wasn’t a fluke. Julia keeps reminding Vic that in the film business, you’re only as good as your next hit. Starring Kathleen Robertson and Rob Deleeuw

The Minor Accomplishments of Jackie Woodman
Comedy Series – Season Two Premieres Sun, Aug 5, at 11:30
The “Minor Accomplishments of Jackie Woodman” is an uncomfortable, herky-jerky romp through Hollywood. Season two takes off where the last season left off: Jackie Woodman (Laura Kightlinger) and her best friend Tara Wentzel (Nicholle Tom) are still in search of their talents, some recognition, a purpose, and a hangover-proof martini. The not-so-dynamic duo finds themselves in a whole new array of circumstances. Jackie and Tara will continue to blow opportunities, shatter illusions, slightly increase the pool of common suffering, and disappoint those who believe in them…all with the best of intentions, the worst of judgment and an utter lack of interpersonal skills. Starring Laura Kightlinger, Nicholle Tom, Mary Kay Place

LIFETIME

Side Order of Life
Series: Premieres Sunday, July 15, 2007
“Side Order of Life” is a thought-provoking and comedic drama, centering on a young magazine photographer who suddenly re-evaluates her life and impending nuptials after receiving a “wake-up call from the universe”. Starring Marisa Coughlan, Jason Priestly, Christopher Gartin, Diana Maria Riva

State of Mind
Series: Premieres Sunday, July 15, 2007
From Greer Shephard and Michael Robin, the executive producing team behind the hit cable series “The Closer” and “nip/tuck”, comes “State of Mind”. Created by practicing psychotherapist, author and professor, Amy Bloom, the quirky and comedic series follows a brilliant, take-charge family therapist who discovers her husband is cheating on her with their marriage counselor, and whose personal problems rival those of her eclectic and offbeat patients. Starring Lili Taylor, Devon Gummersall, Kevin Chamberlin, Theresa Randle, Derek Riddell, Mido Hamada

MTV Networks

The Kill Point (on Spike TV)
Series – Premieres July 22, 2007
This eight-hour action/drama event focuses on two men as they square off during a bank heist gone horribly wrong and the hostage negotiations that ensue. With time of the essence and the uncertainty of the unfolding events, both men need to remain resourceful and collected or risk losing lives. “The Kill Point” reveals how the hostage takers leverage their situation and how the negotiator tries to unravel their plans. Which man will blink? Who will outsmart the other? Who will survive? It’s a dangerous game of chess played out with human lives at stake. Starring John Leguizamo, Donnie Wahlberg

Murder (on Spike TV)
Unscripted Series – Premieres Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Following in the dramatic tradition of “CSI” and “Law & Order”, “Murder” is an unscripted series in which amateur sleuths try to correctly solve real homicides pulled directly from police files. Detective Tommy LeNoir-Host

Elvis Presley Month (on TV Land)
Specials – Premieres Throughout August, 2007
TV Land will celebrate Elvis’ rich television, music and film career by airing a month of his signature performances, Elvis documentaries and movies in which he starred. TV Land has gathered some of Elvis Presley’s most memorable co-stars and intimates to discuss and celebrate his wildly successful career during the 30th anniversary of his death (August 16). Starring Jerry Shilling, Joe Esposito, Pamela Keogh, Sue Anne Langdon

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC Channel

Taboo
Series: Fourth Season Premieres August 2007
Spanning six continents, 19 countries and 25 indigenous cultures, this weekly series takes viewers on a high-definition journey beyond their comfort zones and across cultural borders to explore rituals and customs that are acceptable in some cultures but forbidden, illegal or reviled in others. Crossing the boundary between modern practices and ancient beliefs, each hour-long episode examines one issue from a variety of perspectives, often venturing into closed worlds rarely seen. Hear from some of the world's most renowned and respected anthropologists and sociologists who have investigated a diverse range of cultures. Explore rites of passage, unique lifestyle choices, body modification, gender decisions, nudity and spiritual quests that test the limits of the human body. Starring Sandra Welkerling, Lorna MacMillan

SCI FI

Flash Gordon
Series – Premieres August 10, 2007
Placing a 21st century spin on a science fiction classic, SCI FI Channel's contemporized version of Flash Gordon follows the all-new adventures of Flash (Eric Johnson) and his companions, Dale Arden (Gina Holden) and Dr. Hans Zarkov (Jody Racicot). Ordinary people thrust into extraordinary circumstances, they find themselves as Earth's last line of defense against the forces of the merciless dictator Ming (John Ralston). Starring Eric Johnson, Gina Holden, John Ralston

SHOWTIME

Weeds
Series –3rd Season Premiering Monday, August 13, at 10 pm
One of the most buzzed-about shows on television, “Weeds” will continue to grow and blossom with inspired new storylines and notable guest starts. The series follows a suburban mother (Mary-Louise Parker) who deals marijuana in order to make ends meet after her husband dies unexpectedly. Starring Mary-Louise Parker, Justin Kirk, Romany Malco, Tonye Patano, Hunter Parrish, Matthew Modine, Mary-Kate Olsen

Californication Comedy Series – Premiering Monday, August 13, at 10:30 pm
David Duchovney returns to television! This comedy series focuses on novelist Hank Moody (Duchovny), who struggles to raise his 13-year-old daughter while still carrying a torch for his ex-girlfriend Karne (Natascha McElhone), all while trying to re-launch his writing career. His obsession with honesty and his self-destructive behavior- drinks, drugs and relationships- are simultaneously destroying and enriching his career, and he doesn’t mind it one bit. StarringDavid Duchovny, Natascha McElhone, Evan Handler, Scott Winant

STYLE Network

Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane
Series – Premieres August 5, 2007
As The Style Network’s first reality sitcom series, “Kimora: Life in the Fab Lane” takes viewers inside the compelling life of Kimora Lee Simmons, former wife of music mogul Russell Simmons. With unprecedented and exclusive access to Kimora, the new half-hour series goes behind-the-scenes with the model, mogul and mother who embodies what it means to be fabulous. Viewers follow Kimora through every step of her day, from running her “Baby Phat” fashion empire to being mom to her two young daughters. Also present in the series is Kimora’s immaculate support team, made up of talented and highly entertaining individuals, including her cook, yoga instructor, dog trainer, lawyer, publicist, personal assistant and Baby Phat staff. Starring Kimora Lee Simmons (note: In heels, Kimora is 6’4” tall!)

TRAVEL Channel

Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern
Premieres Monday July 9, 2007
Internationally-renowned chef and food writer Andrew Zimmern knows all about the global pantry. Since the series launch, Andrew has appeared regularly on “The Tonight Show” with Jay Leno to espouse the beauty of both the locations and the traditions behind the foods he consumes, broadening viewers’ culinary horizons, and to encourage them to take a chance and taste the world! Andrew Zimmern-Host

TURNER Broadcasting

God’s Warriors (on CNN)
Documentary – Premieres August 21, 2007
God’s Warriors looks at the global phenomenon of religious fervor and how it impacts politics, culture and public life. CNN chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour journeyed to seven countries over seven months to report on how religious fundamentalists are changing the world - some violently, some non-violently. This six-hour documentary examines those within Christianity, Islam and Judaism who are working to take religion from the periphery to the center of public life, and how far they are willing to go to transform modern society.

Saving Grace (on TNT)
Original Dramatic Series – Premieres Monday, July 23, 2007
Oscar winner Holly Hunter makes her television series debut as a brilliant, fast-living Oklahoma City police detective seemingly bent on self-destruction. A personal and professional tragedy leads her to a rough-hewn angel (Leon Rippy) who tries to help her find her way back. Starring Holly Hunter, Laura San Giacomo, Leon Rippy, Bokeem Woodbine, Lorraine Toussaint, Kenny Johnson, Gregory Cruz, Nancy Miller

The Company (on TNT)
Original Limited Series – Premieres August 5, 2007 at 8 pm et
A gripping, three-week television event based on The New York Times bestseller by Robert Littell, The Company is set in and around the CIA during the Cold War and focuses on CIA and KGB agents’ double lives, deadly enemies, internecine dramas and painful personal battles. Starring Chris O’Donnell, Michael Keaton, Alfred Molina, Alessandro Nivola, Natascha McElhone, Rory Cochrane, Ken Nolan

USA NETWORK

Don’t forget returning favorites “Monk”, “Psych”, the “4400” and new series “Burn Notice” on USA!

Remember, all dates and times listed are subject to change, so be sure and check your local listings)

www.Dishmag.com / Issue 73 - September 2018
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