We’re back for 2017 and like the Scholars we are, our picks feature programs which study history, whether through an edgy filmmaker’s eye or an examination of long-forgotten murder case from 1941. That’s not to say that we shun the parade of returning above-average sitcoms. Oh, and there’s that kooky crime show I’m pretty sure neither Katherine nor I watch anymore. Ok, maybe a sneak at times.
American Masters: Sidney Lumet [PBS, 8p]
PBS’ long-running bio-series takes a look at the long-directing career that was Sidney Lumet, whose knack for a taut thriller brought us everything from 12 Angry Men to Serpico to the underrated Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead, featuring Philip Seymour Hoffman and one of the best slow burn tantrums in screen history.
A Crime to Remember [Investigation Discovery, 9p]
A 1941 murder case in the Bronx relies on testimony from several women.
ALSO ON TAP TONIGHT:
- It’s the night of sitcoms, so let’s start with TBS and the second episode of its latest half hour offering, The Mick, featuring Kaitlin Olsen as a variation on her Dee character from Sunny, but this time taking care of children in a madcap take on Von Trapp themes.
- ABC’s generally reliable line-up starts with the promising premise of the Hecks trying to puzzle a way to escape the room on The Middle. We’ve got Jessica flashbacks on Fresh Off the Boat (and it’s hard to imagine a bad Constance Wu-centric episode). Finally, it’s Kenny getting a tattoo and divorce follies on The Real O’Neals which sounds, well, awful, but this show has proven an ability to polish sitcom cliches.
- New Girl has been going great, so can even the forced guest starring of Megan Fox’s Regan hurt it. We’ll see.
- Not sure whether it’s a break from laughing, but Leah Remini continues her quest to pull the veils off that creepiest of “religions;” however with orange Presidents who love to play with nukes running around while half the country seems just fine with a Russian dictator deciding our election, Scientology feels like it’s fallen waaaay down the bogeyman chart with Zika flu and faulty e-mail servers. Anyway, Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath airs on A&E tonight.
- Ack, do we dare check in on what’s going on with Bones and Booth as they start up their twelfth(?!) and final season of Bones tonight. 12 seasons…ok, maybe we should have seen Trump coming.