CHICAGO (thefutoncritic.com) -- Showtime's original series "Street Time" and "Jeremiah" are set to return for second seasons beginning in August. The announcement comes as the pay cable network is finalizing its aggressive summer lineup which includes four new original series.
-- "Street Time," which stars Rob Morrow ("Northern Exposure"), Scott Cohen
("N.Y.P.D. Blue," "Gilmore Girls") and Erika Alexander ("Living Single"), looks at the Federal parole system from the perspectives of both parole officers and parolees. Terrence Dashon Howard ("Ali," "The Best Man") will join the cast in its second season playing Lucius Mosley, the new supervisor in the "Special Offenders Unit." The seven remaining episodes from its first season begin airing later this month (Wednesdays at 10:45/9:45c starting April 30). The series will then move up to 10:00/9:00c beginning June 25th to air those same seven episodes, counting down to its second season premiere on August 13. Filming on its second season of 13 episodes is set to begin shortly.
-- "Jeremiah," the network's sci-fi series which stars Luke Perry and Malcolm-Jamal Warner, will begin running fresh installments in August according to creator-executive producer J. Michael Straczynski. Like "Time," "Jeremiah" will add a new cast member this season when Sean Astin ("The Lord of the Rings") joins the drama as the mysterious Mr. Smith who partners with Warner's character, Kurdy. Production is almost complete on its second season of 15 episodes.
Other news and notes from Showtime:
-- "Soul Food" and "Queer as Folk" are set to wrap their respective seasons on June 11 and June 29.
-- "Penn & Teller: Bullshit," the anchor to the network's new late night lineup will close its first season on April 18. The series is averaging more than 500,000 households each week, a solid 33% more than Showtime averaged in the time period (Fridays at 11:00/10:00c) during the previous four months, when the slot featured "Jeremiah" for a while and then movies. Even more pleasing is that more than most of those viewers come from the network's target demo of adults 25-54. Mark Wolper, president of the Wolper Organization - the company behind the series, has said he's confident that Showtime will give him a second-season renewal for at least 13 more half-hours, which could happen before the formal deadline date of April 15.
-- After "Bullshit" wraps, Showtime will lean on "Jamie Foxx Presents Laffapalooza" to hold its slot beginning April 25. "Family Business," which closes its season that same day, will continue in repeats at 11:30/10:30c for the time being. Animated series "Free for All," based on the comic strip of the same name, will then take over for "Laffapoalooza" when its 10-episode run concludes in July.
-- No airdates have been named for the final six episodes of "Odyssey 5."
-- While no specific dates and times have been announced, insiders expect Showtime to unveil its three new drama series - "Dead Like Me," "Earthlings" and "Out of Order" - as well as the third season of "The Chris Isaak Show" during the final week of June. The network has used that week in recent years to launch new seasons of its various dramas. "Earthlings" is being eyed for "Queer as Folk's" Sunday slot with "Dead" on Fridays, "Isaak" returning to Tuesdays and "Order" on Mondays. Solid dates and times are expected to be announced at the network's upfront presentation to advertisers shortly.