As TV3 and C4 announce their new season of shows, Scott Kara looks at what's on offer for 2010.


The two best TV picks for next year are likely to give you a good laugh. The first,


, is a local sketch show from the makers of



and the other,

Modern Family

, is a mockumentary starring Ed O'Neill, best known as Al Bundy from 80s show

Married With Children.


stars many of the Naked Samoans, including Oscar Kightley and David Fane, along with comedian and star-for-hire Rhys Darby and director Taika Waititi, in a show that pokes fun at popular culture and modern life while "pushing the boundaries of prime time television".

Modern Family

follows three diverse families with O'Neill's character Jay Pritchett linking them all. Pritchett's daughter has a traditional family made up of her, her husband, and their two kids; then there's his gay son and his partner who have just adopted an Asian baby. Meanwhile, Pritchett himself is married to a much-younger Latina woman. Let the games begin.

"The best new half-hour of funny television in a season rife with half-hours of funny television," raved the

New York Times.

Elsewhere on TV3, the staples of medical, crime, and law shows are once again a feature for 2010.

First up is


, an action medical drama set in San Francisco and starring New Zealander Cliff Curtis. He plays Reuben "Rabbit" Palchuck who's one of the key members of the first response paramedics team who use any means possible to reach their victims in time. Sounds like exciting stuff, like




perhaps? Judging by US critics' reactions it's not all style over substance either, with spot-on storylines to match the action.

A more traditional - but most likely more dry - medical drama is

Three Rivers

, which is set in one of America's foremost transplant hospitals.

On the crime and law front, the best of the bunch is likely to be

The Good Wife

, starring Julianna Margulies (best known as nurse Carol Hathaway on


) as defence attorney Alicia Florrick.

The catch to this show is that Florrick is starting back in the workforce as a lawyer following the public humiliation she had to endure because of her husband's corrupt and philandering ways.

Then there's

NCIS: Los Angeles

, which is simply the NCIS formula of a little action, some intense character analysis, a few laughs, and then justice, only this time in La La Land;

The Associates

, about a young group of "work hard, party hard" associates at a Los Angeles entertainment law firm starring Billy Zane; and White Collar, a drama about a con man who is recruited by the FBI to catch crims.

And lastly, on a light comedy note,

Accidentally On Purpose

stars Jenna Elfman - remember her as the exuberant and slightly daft blonde from Dharma and Greg? - as Billie who finds herself knocked up after a one-night-stand with a much younger man. Ring any bells?


Beverly Hills 90210

got the remake treatment last year, with mixed-to-bad results, and now it's the turn of spin-off show

Melrose Place

to be given a 2000's makeover.

While the new cast stars pop star-turned-actress Ashlee Simpson, a few originals from the first series also turn up at the apartment complex. But you'll have to wait for 10 episodes to see the return of Heather Locklear as the tough and uncompromising Amanda Woodward.

Speaking of tough,

Sons Of Anarchy

is a dark drama about a notorious motorcycle gang intent on protecting their town from being overtaken by drug dealers, property developers and the cops. The second season, currently screening in the US, is better than the first apparently, so keep watching.

For fans of

The Office


Parks and Recreation

takes that deadpan mockumentary formula and applies it to the everyday grind of local government in the small town of Pawnee, Indiana.

The show centres around the character of Leslie Knope from the parks and recreation department, who is played by comedian and actress Amy Poehler from

Saturday Night Live

. As with

Sons Of Anarchy

it looks like the second series is better than the first.

Meanwhile, the creators of

Family Guy

have come up with

The Cleveland Show

about Cleveland Brown who shacks up with his high school sweetheart after her first husband skips town.

And finally, to end with a bit of trashy reality TV,

Pretty Wicked

challenges 10 self-centred divas to "beautify" their inner being.

TV One and TV2 are due to announce their new line-ups in early November and Prime on November 10.