Television's midseason might not come with as much hype and push as the start of the fall season of TV, but that doesn't mean it's full of Bosom Buddies repeats (don't be alarmed if you catch one, though; it's actually just ABC's Work It). There are plenty of high-quality baby shows calling early 2012 "mother"—here are the ones we're looking forward to most.
10. Frozen Planet (Discovery)
When it's on: Sundays starting March 18
Who's in it: Nature What it's about: Educational television never looked better! This Discovery miniseries, which was co-produced by the BBC and comes from the creators of Planet Earth and Life, takes a look at some of the harshest ecosystems on the planet: the north and south poles. Note: This is a must-see in HD.
9. Luck (HBO)
When it's on: Sundays starting January 29
Who's in it: Dustin Hoffman, Dennis Farina, John Ortiz, Nick Nolte, Michael Gambon, Kevin Dunn, Richard Kind
What it's about: Winners, losers, and everyone in between at a local horse-racing track.
Why we're excited about it: All you have to do is read the cast credits to get amped up about this show (but go ahead and also slap your behind with a riding crop if you need to). Dustin Hoffman, Deadwood creator David Milch, Hollywood hotshot director Michael Mann, Nick Nolte, and Dennis Farina are all involved in what's sure to be HBO's next critical hit.
8. GCB (ABC)
When it's on: Sundays starting March 4
Who's in it: Leslie Bibb, Kristin Chenoweth, Annie Potts, Jennifer Aspen, Miriam Shor, Brad Beyer, Mark Deklin
What it's about: A Texas woman returns to her hometown to cat-fight and gossip and generally do all the things you want to see on television.
Why we're excited about it: ABC isn't exactly making its move toward female audiences a secret with primetime soaps, and GCB may be the most over-the-top of the bunch. It won't win any Emmys, but it's what we'll be talking about at work the next day.
7. Alcatraz (Fox)
When it's on: Mondays starting January 16
Who's in it: Sarah Jones, Jorge Garcia, Sam Neill, Parminder Nagra, Robert Forster
What it's about: Inmates and guards who went missing from the famous prison decades ago mysteriously reappear and start doing weird things.
Why we're excited about it: J.J. Abrams put his name on this project, so you know it's going to be more than just your everyday sci-fi drama. And with the Lost's Jorge Garcia and Sam Neill visiting our living rooms every week, it has our attention.
6. Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23 (ABC)
When it's on: TBD
Who's in it: Dreama Walker, Krysten Ritter, Eric Andre, Michael Blaiklock, and James Van Der Beek
What it's about: A woman from the country relocates to New York City and moves in with a sketchy party girl.
Why we're excited about it: ABC is currently on a hot streak with comedies, and we've had our eye on this ever since it was announced. Ummm... and James Van Der Beek plays himself. Plus it's, uhh... a bit crass. Okay, okay. Krysten Ritter. There. We admit it.
5. Awake (NBC)
When it's on: TBD
Who's in it: Jason Isaacs, Steve Harris, Wilmer Valderrama, Laura Allen, Dylan Minnette, B.D. Wong, Cherry Jones
What it's about: A police detective gets in a car accident and wakes up to two different realities: one where his wife didn't survive the accident, and one where his son didn't survive the accident.
Why we're excited about it: This mind-bender comes from Kyle Killen, the creator of Lone Star, who loves to play with dual universes. It also happens to be the best pilot of the season. The only reason it isn't number one on this list is that NBC still hasn't scheduled it and there were reportedly problems with the production of its later episodes.
4. Touch (Fox)
When it's on: Mondays starting March 19, with a preview January 25
Who's in it: Kiefer Sutherland, David Mazouz, Danny Glover, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Roxana Brusso, Karen David
What it's about: A father discovers that his mute son's gift with numbers is more than just a way to communicate.
Why we're excited about it: Creator Tim Kring (Heroes) is responsible for one of the best debut seasons of sci-fi in network history. (We won't talk about what happened after that.) Touch has the chance to combine mystery, spirituality, and fantasy in one... we just hope fans will respond.
3. House of Lies (Showtime)
When it's on: Sundays starting January 8
Who's in it: Don Cheadle, Kristen Bell, Ben Schwartz, Dawn Olivieri, Richard Schiff
What it's about: A consulting firm grifts corporate fat cats into overpaying for its services.
Why we're excited about it: Don Cheadle can act like no one's business, and we're always suckers for a steal-from-the-rich-and-give-to-the-less-rich storyline. That is, until we get rich. Plus, Kristen Bell is in her underwear in the trailer.
2. The River (ABC)
When it's on: Tuesdays starting February 7
Who's in it: Bruce Greenwood, Joe Anderson, Paul Balckthorne, Paulina Gaitan, Leslie Hope
What it's about: This found-footage horror show traces what happened to a rescue team that went searching for a missing adventurer/television personality.
Why we're excited about it: We're guessing something bad happened. This is legitimate horror on primetime television from the creator of Paranormal Activity, and for some reason everything is always scarier when it's seen through the lens of a camcorder. Plus, the pilot is awesome.
1. Smash (NBC)
When it's on: Mondays starting February 6
Who's in it: Debra Messing, Brian D'Arcy James, Christian Borle, Katharine McPhee, Jack Davenport, Anjelica Huston, Uma Thurman
What it's about: The buzz for this musical drama is off the charts! And with a cast that confirms its quality, we're guessing this could be the next big hit that America falls in love with, even if it is on NBC.
Which new shows are you most looking forward to this midseason?