Television networks are so fixated on ratings that there is usually a dead period through the holiday season up to mid-January. Now is the perfect time to try something new that you may have skipped out on in the past.

In spite of airing on the CW, Supernatural has more in common with long-gone shows like Buffy The Vampire Slayer than the network's current rich girl programming. In the beginning of "Supernatural" Sam and Dean Winchester were searching for their missing father and the demon that killed their mom. Like Prison Break, the major arc was laid out from the start. But the show keeps evolving. This season the series started to look at the idea of heaven and hell while still keeping Sam and Dean's relationship center stage. "Supernatural" doesn't resume its fourth season until the end of January, but now it's the perfect opportunity to catch up on the first three seasons that are all available on DVD.

Searching for something to watch besides reruns doesn't necessarily mean turning to a video store or Netflix. HBO's Big Love returns with a new season on January 18. "Big Love's" take on polygamy may attract many new viewers, but it's the complications of a non-traditional family that will keep viewers tuning in. Bill and his three wives Barb, Margene and Nicki are in a constant struggle to maintain their shaky balance. The wives' attempt to each have the best grip on Bill is unique and still somehow relatable.

For those without premium channels, Friday Night Lights returns with its third season this January. The third season aired first on Direct TV to steady rating, so here's hoping some of that audience will follow it back to its home network NBC. "It's not just a show about football" has been said repeatedly. The series is full of living breathing characters that are all finding their way in the world. Football is what connects them, but it's their community living that shapes things. The realities of life in a small town are addressed in ways that are natural but entertaining.

This winter try something different and skip the reality show contests and marathons. The lack of fresh episodes of old favorites is the perfect time to find new ones.

Story by Lauren Attaway

Starpulse contributing writer