Credit: Monty Brinton/CBS

Since the writers’ strike ended, fans of sitcoms and dramas have had to sit on their hands as television scribes typed furiously with theirs. This week, CBS gets an edge on other networks by rolling out fresh episodes of their Monday primetime lineup, including How I Met Your Mother, Big Bang Theory, and Two and a Half Men. But, can these fan favorites compete against the real drama going down on shows like Dancing with the Stars and American Idol?

MondayDancing with the Stars vs. How I Met Your MotherMore celebrities want to cut a rug than ever, and it’s going to be tough to beat a live DWTS premiere that features Steven Guttenberg, Marlee Matlin and Priscilla Presley. If anyone has a chance, it’s Britney Spears, who will have a cameo on the CBS sitcom next week.

Tuesday American Idol vs. Anyone? CBS’s Jericho (can the town go on without Bonnie?) and CW’s One Tree Hill (Lindsey and Lucas are finally getting married!) had new episodes shot before the strike, but as Idol continues to say goodbye to contestants each week, it’s going to be hard to lure away.

ThursdayMiss Guided vs. NCAA BasketballABC tries to add a new-sitcom jab before its knockout punch Lost. Judy Greer stars as a guidance counselor who corrects her dorky past by working at her old high school. Funny concept (especially with producer Ashton Kutcher guest staring in the first ep). But there’s just only problem: those March Madness brackets need to be filled out. Maybe a little Spears guest appearance would do the trick for the new show? Brit’s sis, Jamie Lynn Spears is set to star in the premiere episode.

Next week and beyondCBS’ CSI: Miami and Cold Case come back next week. The first week of April, CBS’ Criminal Minds, CSI, Without a Trace, Ghost Whisperer and NBC’s My Name Is Earl will also return. Expect the rest of those shows you’re pining for to be back by the end of April. –Jonathan SternMonty Brinton/CBS