We’re in touch with reality tonight, even if it is a reality wholly crafted by behind-the-scene showrunners. Leading off, it’s the dating show, that even more-staid-than-your-average-Brit John Oliver has an opinion on (and one that has spawned not one, but two, programs our editors love). Bonus: if you watch all our picks simultaneously, you can be comfy in your bed by 9:30pm. Man, do we feel old!
The Bachelor [ABC, 8p]
It’s that time of year again! It’s cold and dark outside, but on the screen it’s always at a boiling point. Season 23, staring Colton Underwood as The Bachelor, starts tonight! How many times will he get stolen for a chat? How many free drinks will the women consume? What crazy entrance will we remember for weeks to come?
Antiques Roadshow [PBS, 8p]
The season 23 premiere takes us to Rochester Hills, Michigan. And something from somebody’s shed, living room, or attic is appraised for $77,500.
Kids Baking Championship [Food, 9p]
I’m a fan of The Great British Baking Show due to the level of benevolent support the competitors give one another, so it follows that I’ll also rep this similarly good-natured competition show. Plus, tonight they’re asked to be mini-Elvises as the season opening challenge is bacon cupcakes.
ALSO ON TAP TONIGHT:
- For actual real reality, PBS’ docu-fest Independent Lens heads up to one of the ancestral lands of our editor Katherine, the Peace Garden State, with the premiere of My Country No More, a look at the North Dakota oil boom.
- And then there’s mostly real reality, as performers of all stripes converge on the stage adjacent to Howie Mandel, Mel B, Heidi Klum, and creator Simon Cowell for the fourteenth season of NBC’s America’s Got Talent.
- Might as well take a brief detour back to scripted programming as the we-wish-it-were-better sci-fi mindbender Manifest comes back on NBC as Michaela goes off on a new path that both excites and worries her fellow travelers.