Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

And suddenly TV is back, with Galavant leading the charge

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Sunday, January 4th. All times are Eastern.

Top pick

Galavant (ABC, 8 p.m.): There is very little explaining this season’s weirdest new show Galavant! (exclamation point ours), so here are the facts:

  • Galavant! is a series set in a medievalish fairy tale world featuring original songs from Disney veterans Alan Menken and Glenn Slater;
  • Galavant! is the brainchild of Dan Fogelman, creator of the late alien sitcom The Neighbors and Tangled;
  • Galavant! is also the name of the dashing white guy protagonist;
  • Galavant! is airing two episodes back-to-back tonight, because ABC realized it had no earthly clue how to market Men In Tights: The Television Series;
  • Galavant! could either be an awkward disaster on a community theater level or a hilarious joy. For professional opinions on the matter, we turn to our an overarching TV Review from our own Kate Kulzick, while our weekly reviews go to A.V. newcomer Dan Caffrey (which explains that smell of fresh meat)
  • Oh, right: Galavant! also co-stars John Stamos as devastatingly handsome knight “Jean Hamm,” like so:

But if we were writing Galavant!, it’d look a little more like


Also noted

Downton Abbey (PBS, 9 p.m.): The BBC soap celebrates the beginning of its fifth season with a 75-minute premiere. Manners will be taught. Tea will be drunk. Class tensions will be pushed down into the deep dark corner of the British soul that refuses to feel feelings unless it involves Manchester United, the Royal family, or last call. Joshua Alston gave the season the full review treatment, while our new weekly Downton correspondent Emily Stephens is currently taking bets on who’s will be the first this season to use a fainting couch.


The Simpsons (FOX, 8 p.m.): The Simpson family goes to “Dizzneeland” and end up rocketing through the galaxy to become part of another planet’s zoo/restaurant, also known as “The Simpsons take shrooms at Disneyland.” Dennis Perkins has certainly never done such a thing, no sir.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine (FOX, 8:30 p.m.): The gang retreats to Boyle’s family cabin for a detectives-only getaway, where Gina attempts to get type-A Amy drunk and Rosa gets advice on how to send “romantic texts” to Nick Cannon. As always, we turn to LaToya Ferguson to tell us how many sexts involve eggplants and/or peaches. (Red Siren Light, Girl Crossing Arms, Fire, Knife, Knife, Knife, Knife, Skull, Octopus.)


Family Guy (FOX, 9 p.m.): Stewie and Brian are taking the time machine for an “educational” spin in what the show is calling, “Stewie, Chris, & Brian’s Excellent Adventure.” We think Eric Thurm will be the judge of that, Adventure.

The Good Wife (CBS, 10 p.m.): Cary and Alicia both hire consultants, but since Cary’s in prison and Alicia’s preparing for a State’s Attorney debate, we’re assuming these are consultants of a different nature. Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya wishes someone at The Good Wife would consult her on Kalinda’s leather:boots ratio already.


Tomorrow in TV Club

Molly Eichel will have a look at the new Terrence Howard/Taraji P. Henson music drama Empire, while various A.V. TV critics will weigh in on this whole Friends hitting Netflix thing. Also, various A.V. critics from multiple sections will reveal t heir most anticipated pieces of entertainment for 2015. Also also, an in-depth look at “midreputable T.V.” If you’re confused as to what that means, you’ll just have to come back tomorrow (and that’s what we call a ‘tease’)!


What else is on?

NFL Special: AFC Wild Card Game: Cincinnati at Indianapolis (CBS, 1:05 p.m.): A wild card game with a very long title, not to be confused with


NFL Special: AFC Wild Card Game: Detroit at Dallas (FOX, 1:05 p.m.)

Madam Secretary (CBS, 8 p.m.): Madam Secretary Tea Leoni returns to arrange an extradition deal, but the biggest casualty may be her 25th wedding anniversary. Can she have it all?


The Real Housewives of Atlanta (Bravo, 8 p.m.): We’re only highlighting this because the episode is called “50 Shades Of Shade” and we cannot believe this is the first time we’re hearing this joke, is Twitter asleep or something?!

Finding Bigfoot: British Bigfoot (Animal Planet, 8 p.m.): In case none of the above grabs you, delve into the strange and mysterious world of British Bigfoot, who deviates from the American Bigfoot by going to the “lift” with his shopping “trolley” full of “corgettes” and “aubergines” and “jammy dodgers,” probably.


Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Challenge: Welcome to Hell (CMT, 8 p.m.): The only thing worse than the entire concept of this show title is that this is, in fact, a second season premiere.

The Apprentice: May The Gods of Good Pies Be With Us (NBC, 9 p.m.):


Oh look at that, we spoke too soon. (Our apologies to Steve Austin.)

In case you missed it

Doctor Who (Classic): In an otherwise deserted weekend, Christopher Bahn forged ahead with his Classic coverage of Doctor Who and its simply but brilliantly titled, “Robots Of


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