Here’s what’s up in the world of television for Thursday, June 29. All times are Eastern.
Battle Of The Network Stars (ABC, 9 p.m.): Between 1976 and 1985—plus a one-off revival in 1988—the three major American broadcast networks regularly sent their talent to compete against one another in pseudo-Olympic tournaments, testing the athletic acumen of Barney Miller, Wonder Woman, Richie Cunningham, and several Charlie’s Angels (and that’s just the ABC team). The field of competitors in today’s Battle Of The Network Stars is decidedly less lustrous, but setting the series up as a weekly summer replacement, rather than a biannual special, was sure to thin the crowd of potential golfers, kayakers, and dunk-tank taunters. But if you’ve always wondered “Who would run an obstacle course faster: Cousin Balki, or Chad from High School Musical?” then tonight’s “TV Sitcoms Versus TV Kids” promises plenty of thrilling victory and agonizing defeat.
Gay For Play Game Show Starring RuPaul (Logo, 9 p.m.): The ongoing revival of kitschy TV competitions on ABC is great, but credit where credit’s due: RuPaul was calling upon the spirits of Charles Nelson Reilly, Paul Lynde, and skinny microphones while Alec Baldwin was still filling in fictional blanks on the NBC schedule as Jack Donaghy. First there was Drag Race’s popular “Snatch Game” segment; now the bawdy, ballsy Gay For Play Game Show returns for a second round of celebrity-panel shenanigans. Battling stars is fine for some people, but it’s also nice to see stars lending one another a hand now and then.