A GIFTED MAN
A neurosurgeon's path to becoming the next Dr. House is interrupted by the ghost of his ex-wife (Jennifer Ehle). Somebody get them a pottery wheel and cue up "Unchained Melody"! I'm not sure how this series will stay interesting beyond, oh, week three. Maybe viewers who miss "The Ghost Whisperer" will keep this affair going, although star Patrick Wilson isn't exactly Jennifer Love Hewitt. ★★ 1/2
- 7 p.m. Fridays, WCCO, Ch. 4
Big bad wolves, evil stepmothers and wicked witches roam modern-day America. The only one who can stop them is a descendant of the famous brothers -- who just happens to be a detective (David Giuntoli). Clever idea, but far too dark to watch near bedtime. Grim, indeed. ★★
- 8 p.m. Fridays starting Oct. 21, KARE, Ch. 11.
ONCE UPON A TIME
"Lost" fans looking for a fix could do a lot worse than this imaginative drama in which the Evil Queen banishes all her minions to modern-day, small-town Maine. It's no coincidence that the show was created by two former "Lost" scribes: Adam Horowitz and Minnesota native Edward Kitsis, who picked up a few tricks on how to weave humor, heart and horror into a juicy mystery. ★★★
- 7 p.m. Sundays starting Oct. 23, KSTP, Ch. 5.
Jonah Hill has slimmed down almost enough to pass for a sex symbol, but he's still an awkward nerd at heart. Hill describes the title character he's created for this animated series as a "7-year-old Truman Capote." I haven't seen it yet, but color me intrigued.
- 7:30 p.m. Sundays starting Oct. 30, KMSP, Ch. 9.
The Replacements were wrong. This beautifully shot drama, set in the 1960s, suggests that stewardesses could be more than waitresses in the sky, taking on the roles of secret agents, heroines and runaway brides. It also suggests they could be quite boring. The series needs to add grit to the glamour if it's going to get off the ground. ★★ 1/2
- 9 p.m. Sundays starting Sept. 25, KSTP, Ch. 5.
WEEKEND STAR: CHRISTINA RICCI
- The show: "Pan Am" (ABC)
- The role: Maggie, the go-to flight attendant in the air and on the ground. Just don't call her "Toots."
- Where you've seen her: "The Addams Family," "The Ice Storm."
- Why we love her: We've watched her go from cute child star to sexually charged ingenue. Can't wait to see what she's got planned as a grownup.
- On playing a stewardess in the early '60s: "Yes, they had to pass through the girdle checks and grooming checks, but by going through those things, and having met the education qualifications, they were then allowed to travel freely and see the world in a way that others didn't and be in charge of their own lives in a way, at a time when women weren't necessarily regularly in charge of their lives."
- What you didn't know: Minneapolis rapper Slug of Atmosphere recorded "Felt: A Tribute to Christina Ricci" with L.A. rapper Murs.