With Lena Dunham’s omnipresence in the media between the build-up for and release of her book Not That Kind of Girl and her controversial Tweet/hair color/relationship du jour, it’s easy to forget we’re due for a new season of Girls (Season Premiere, 9 p.m. Sunday, HBO). But Hannah and friends are back for another round of comical misadventures.
One major change in this fourth season is the setting — while Jessa, Marnie, Shoshanna and the dudes are still living the dream in New York, Hannah is doing her thing at the prestigious Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
Expect to see Hannah and Adam navigate a long-distance relationship; Marnie and Desi work on their music and maybe more; Shosh graduate (and we get to meet her parents, played by Ana Gasteyer and Anthony Edwards); and Jessa try to stay sober.
Guest stars are always a highlight each season; this time around, look out for Gillian Jacobs, Marc Maron, Zachary Quinto, Maude Apatow and Spike Jonze.
WEDNESDAY JAN. 7
American Idol (Season Premiere, 8 p.m., Fox) – Harry Connick Jr., Keith Urban and Jennifer Lopez return to the judges’ panel to find the country’s next major musician. Keep an eye out for talented local Jess Lamb, who auditions in this week’s premiere episodes (8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday). Spoiler Alert: The judges love her, and so will you.
Modern Family (9 p.m., ABC) – After facing a near-death experience, Manny and the Dunphys all decide to make drastic life changes, which include avoiding all automobiles and getting (another) llama.
Blackish (9:30 p.m., ABC) – When Dre turns to his father to help him seem more masculine to Bow, Pops actually ends up attracting a woman himself — his ex-wife Ruby. Elsewhere, a school play gets awkward when Junior and Zoey are cast as Romeo and Juliet.
American Horror Story: Freak Show (10 p.m., FX) – Neil Patrick Harris, AHS fan and freelance magician, guest-stars as the new show boss, ready to take over Elsa’s role as she prepares to leave for Hollywood. The traveling salesman/illusionist has an eye for the twins … and a creepy doll fetish. AHS alumna Jamie Brewer also makes a return this week.
THURSDAY JAN. 8
Portlandia (Season Premiere, 10 p.m., IFC) – Season Five kicks off with a look back at how Toni met Candace. Before the duo was hawking vagina pillows at Portland’s finest feminist bookstore, they were battling it out on the dance floor. Basically, Toni and Candace were Romy and Michele in power suits.
Parenthood (10 p.m., NBC) – The season picks back up with Zeek’s health scare. As the family anxiously waits for news, Joel continues to prove he’s the best (Julia, take him back) and the women plan a baby shower for Amber. It’s the 100th episode of the series; celebrate by shedding 100 tears.
SUNDAY JAN. 11
The 72nd Annual Golden Globe Awards (8 p.m., NBC) – The girls are back! No, not Hannah and friends; I’m talking about Amy Poehler and Tina Fey. The pair hosts the Globes for the third consecutive year, celebrating the year’s best movies and TV the only way they know how — hilariously.
Brooklyn Nine-Nine (8:30 p.m., Fox) – Jake’s borrowed quite a bit of cash from the other detectives and crew over the years, so they decide the time has come for him to repay. Elsewhere, Holt and Santiago reopen the Brooklyn Broiler case.
Shameless (Season Premiere, 9 p.m., Showtime) – Season Five: The Gallaghers get gentrified!
Togetherness (Series Premiere, 9:30 p.m., HBO) – A married couple tries to reignite the spark that parenthood and life’s stresses have quelled as they invite a struggling actor friend and an impulsive, fun sibling to move in. Mark Duplass (The League, The Mindy Project), Melanie Lynskey, Amanda Peet and Steve Zissis star in this new relationship comedy from Mark and Jay Duplass.
My Husband’s Not Gay (Premiere, 10 p.m., TLC) – OK?!
TUESDAY JAN. 13
Parks & Recreation (Season Premiere, 8 p.m., NBC) – This seventh and final season offers a glimpse into the future of Pawnee (it’s 2017). Each week brings two episodes to catch up with Knope and Company. But some things never change: Tammy is back, and she’s weaving her Black Widow web around a new victim — Councilman Jamm.
Kroll Show (Season Premiere, 10:30 p.m., Comedy Central) – Bobby Bottleservice and the other “Gigolo House” contestants play H.O.R.S.E. to determine who goes home; On “Wheels Ontario,” Mikey gets addicted to pills.