5 Best Fall TV Shows for Teens and Families

A TV editor's picks for this season's top shows. A TV editor's picks for this season's top shows. By Sierra Filucci, Common Sense Media TV editor

Maybe it's the competition from streaming TV, or maybe it's just good timing, but after a few disappointing seasons, traditional TV networks are seriously stepping up their game. From quirky comedies to thrilling dramas, the 2013 network TV line-up offers some great new shows for families to enjoy together.

While it's sometimes hard to pick the winners and losers based on pilots or clips, we feel pretty confident that these few shows will have something positive to offer families and teens.


The Michael J. Fox Show (NBC), On 12+

Fox is one of TV's most beloved comedians, and this show demonstrates that his Parkinson's disease hasn't dampened his sense of humor. In a wonderfully meta manner, this comedy takes Fox's real-life situation (as a father with Parkinson's and a supportive wife, who's reentering the public sphere after being out of the limelight for many years) and turns it into comedy gold. Could be a great pick for whole-family viewing.

Watch if you like: Modern Family


MasterChef Junior (Fox), Tweens+

Gordon Ramsay keeps his famous temper in check in this spin-off of the popular home cooking contest -- this time starring kids! Wee cooking whizzes tackle both the savory and the sweet in this fun-for-the-whole-family reality competition.

Watch if you like: MasterChef


Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC), On 13+

Avengers director/Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon helms this TV spin-off of the mega-popular superhero franchise. With clever dialogue and action-packed sequences, fanboys and fangirls (both teen and adult) will get a weekly thrill.

Watch if you like: Fringe


Brooklyn Nine-Nine (Fox), On 14+

Andy Samberg has a lot of teen fans despite the fact that his Saturday Night Live humor was pretty risque. In this cop comedy, Samberg tones it down a notch while playing against Andre Braugher, whose comic delivery is deadly serious. While the success of this show rides heavily on Samberg's ability to maintain his quirky energy from week to week, we're willing to risk it.

Watch if you like: Scrubs


Tomorrow People (CW), Teens+

This sci-fi fantasy about a teen who finds out he's part of an evolved race of people has the potential to be an entertaining ride for teens. It's certainly got some dark elements -- and lots of too-beautiful-to-believe characters -- but it looks well produced, and it taps into relatable teen anxieties.

Watch if you like: Arrow


Comment below! Do you find that watching TV with your kids lets you talk about issues that may not come up in regular conversation? (And follow me on Twitter!)



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