ANo, not really. It’s important to remember the context surrounding every new series, including its genre and channel and creators and stars. But just because a series debuts in the summer, doesn’t mean it needs to be graded on a curve. Sure, traditionally the summer can be a dumping ground for TV. And there are plenty of easy, unchallenging summer series (like CBS’ new Salvation this year) but there are also really great series that go down in history as some of the best. Mad Men debuted in the summer 10 years ago. American Idol started out in the summer, and so did Seinfeld, The Wire, Louie and Sex and the City. You should try the network’s Search Party. The series is a dark comedy about a group of twentysomethings who get entangled in the search for a former college acquaintance who disappears. While that may not sound particularly funny, it mines a lot of humor from the emotion and drama, and stars Arrested Development’s Alia Shawkat, who is always a joy to see onscreen. Wet Hot American Summer writer Michael Showalter is one of the show’s creators. And if you’re missing People of Earth, it just returned for its second season. Based on a series of books by True Blood author Charlaine Harris, Midnight is a fun and sometimes funny supernatural horror series. It follows Manfred (François Arnaud), a medium and a bit of a con man who is on the run. His dead grandmother (with whom he speaks to from the beyond) tells him to go to Midnight, Texas, which ends up being a place somewhere between the living and the dead. Other supernatural beings are drawn there, too, including a vampire, a werewolf, a witch and an angel. The cast is charming, the effects are quite good (especially for summer TV) and the central mystery (when the fiancé of one of the supernatural townsfolk is murdered) is intriguing. It’s an overall enjoyable watch.