THE HILLS MTV, WEDNESDAYS, 10 P.M. E.T. Oh, to be young, beautiful and videotaped! This sequel to rich-kids reality soap Laguna Beach follows LB's Lauren Conrad to fashion school in L.A. She moves into a fabulous West Hollywood apartment, then interviews for and just happens to land an internship at Teen Vogue--you keep waiting for the scene in which a 10-carat diamond falls from the sky into her lap. With My Super Sweet 16 and Tiara Girls, The Hills completes a kind of MTV trilogy of princesshood. Yet it's hard not to like Conrad, if only because compared with her idle, spoiled friends, she's practically Horatio Alger. ("I have a full-time job!" says one guy pal. "I go out every night!") Deadpan and gorgeously shot, The Hills is an addictively watchable visit to the cool kids' table.
RESCUE ME FX, TUESDAYS, 10 P.M. E.T. Tommy Gavin (Denis Leary, below) is trying to explain to his daughter what happened to the soul of his son, killed by a drunken driver last season. "He's here," Gavin fumbles, pointing to his head and chest, "and here." She giggles: "That was really lame, Dad." The scene is moving--Gavin so badly wants to make her, and himself, believe--yet hilarious. This firefighter drama, in its third season, is a black-humored study of why men lie--to themselves, each other, God, their families and women (this season, including guest star Susan Sarandon). Leary is one of the few leads who could handle the whiplashing tones, and he has made the brave and selfish Gavin empathetic without excusing him. Rescue Me makes you laugh until and becauseit hurts.
DEADWOOD HBO, SUNDAYS, 9 P.M. E.T.; STARTS JUNE 11 Law is coming to the mining settlement of Deadwood. But order is not. Seth Bullock (Timothy Olyphant) is running for sheriff in the town's first election while misanthropic magnate George Hearst (Gerald McRaney) is ruthlessly moving in on the mining operations. Saloonkeeper Al Swearengen (Ian McShane) sees Hearst's thugs as a threat to his crime-and-vice monopoly. "Bloodletting on my premises-- that I ain't approved--I take as a f__ing affront," he says. HBO seems ready, foolishly, to let Season 3 be the western's last. It's worth hopping on this poetic, profane story of frontier money lust before it rides into the sunset.
LOVESPRING INTERNATIONAL LIFETIME, MONDAYS, 11 P.M. E.T. Work and love are two classic subjects for sitcoms, so it only makes sense to combine them. This improv comedy is set at an "élite Beverly Hills dating service"--actually located in Tarzana, Calif.--that is staffed by a neurotic crew of "relationship consultants." Cast with versatile veterans of improv shows like Reno 911!, Lovespring also features a daffy string of customers both demanding (a woman offers $10,000 to have her dog deflowered) and satisfied ("He learned some things in prison that really make me happy"). The concept has been tried unsuccessfully before (e.g., UPN's Love Inc. last season), but this loose, wry sitcom makes a crackling love connection.