LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- With 2004 quickly drawing to a close several cable networks have outlined their January 2005 launches, including USA, Sci Fi, Bravo, Showtime, Hallmark, FX and HBO. Here's a breakdown of those recently released:
BATTLESTAR GALACTICA (Sci Fi) - The series has been slated to debut on Friday, January 14 at 9:00/8:00c with a two-hour premiere. The show will then settle into its regular Friday, 10:00/9:00c slot on January 21.
CARNIVALE (HBO) - The long-awaited second season of the pay channel drama is set to premiere Sunday, January 9 at 9:00/8:00c.
CELEBRITY POKER SHOWDOWN (Bravo) - The cable channel has quietly renewed its popular poker series for a fifth edition with a new tournament set to begin Tuesday, January 25 at 8:00/7:00c. Brad Garret, Catherine O'Hara, Curt Schilling, Ray Romano and Sara Rue are each set to appear in the first game.
HUFF (Showtime) - Showtime's freshman entry will wrap its inaugural season on Sunday, January 30 at 10:00/9:00c. Look for season two of "The L Word" to take over the slot come February 20.
JANE DOE (Hallmark) - The cable channel's third telefilm franchise opens on Friday, January 21 at 9:00/8:00c with "Jane Doe: Vanishing Act." Here's how Hallmark's press info details the project: "By all appearances, suburban housewife Cathy Davis is your typical mother of two. But when a top secret government security agency calls on their top-agent-turned-mom back to duty, can Cathy manage to get dinner on the table and save the nation at the same time? Stars Lea Thompson, Joe Penny, and Bill Moses." Three other "Jane Doe" telefilms are set to debut sometime in 2005.
MCBRIDE (Hallmark) - The telefilm franchise makes its premiere on Friday, January 14 at 9:00/8:00c with "McBride: Murder Past Midnight." Here's how the network's press materials describe the project: "Ex-cop turned defense attorney, Jim McBride takes on a new and very beautiful client accused of murdering her husband. Stars John Larroquette, Marta Dubois, and Matt Lutz." Three other "McBride" telefilms are set to debut in 2005 including "McBride: The Chameleon Murder" and "McBride: The Doctor Is Out, Really Out."
MONK (USA) - The cable channel has confirmed season three of "Monk" will resume its run on Friday, January 21 at 10:00/9:00c. Those looking to get a "Monk" fix before then however can tune into the show's 24-hour marathon set to begin Saturday, January 1 at 6:00 a.m. eastern.
MYSTERY WOMAN (Hallmark) - The cable channel's "Mystery Woman" franchise returns with two new telefilms in January. Things kick off Friday, January 7 at 9:00/8:00c with "Mystery Woman: Mystery Weekend" followed by "Mystery Woman: Snapshot" on Friday, January 28 at 9:00/8:00c. Here's how Hallmark's press materials describe "Mystery Weekend": "Samantha and Philby are back on the call when an attempted murder takes place in the bookstore. Stars Kellie Martin, Clarence Williams III, and Nina Siemaszko." And here's the synopsis for "Snapshot": "Samantha's friend Barbara turns up murdered after accusing her family of rigging her brother's will. Stars Kellie Martin, Clarence Williams III, and Nina Siemaszko." Two other "Mystery Woman" telefilms are set to debut in 2005 including "Mystery Woman: Sing Me a Murder."
QUEER EYE FOR THE STRAIGHT GIRL (Bravo) - The cable channel will offer a "sneak preview" of the "Queer Eye" spin-off on Tuesday, January 11 at 11:00/10:00c. The series will then officially launch on Wednesday, January 12 at 10:00/9:00c. To make room for "Girl," current Wednesday, 10:00/9:00c time period holder "Project Runway" will slide back to the 9:00/8:00c hour starting January 5.
SMALLPOX (FX) - The cable channel's latest "disaster"-themed telefilm has been slated to air Sunday, January 2 at 8:00/7:00c.
STARGATE SG-1/STARGATE ATLANTIS (Sci Fi) - The network's "Stargate" franchise will return for the second half of its 2004-05 season on Friday, January 21 with each series moving up an hour. "SG-1" will air at 8:00/7:00c followed by "Atlantis" at 9:00/8:00c.
UNSCRIPTED (HBO) - George Clooney and Steven Soderbergh's latest effort for the pay channel is set to launch with back-to-back episodes on Sunday, January 9 at 10:00/9:00c. The heavily improved comedy revolves around a trio of struggling actors - Krista Allen ("Anger Management"), Bryan Greenberg ("The Perfect Score") and Jennifer Hall ("Confessions of a Dangerous Mind") - trying to make it big in Hollywood.
Look for information on other premieres in the coming weeks!