Andy Samberg (HBO)

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Friday, July 10 and Saturday, July 11. All times are Eastern.

Top pick

7 Days In Hell (HBO, 10 p.m., Saturday): An HBO mini-movie (42 minutes is mini, right?) about a fictionally interminable tennis match pits a suspiciously Agassi-esque Andy Samberg against Kit Harrington’s ultra-British manchild in a faux ESPN 30 For 30 mockumentary. Alex McCown‘s already seen it (along with people who have fancy HBO Go or HBO Now, or possibly Slurp Latin or Slurp HD), and declares it a winner—maybe not an ace, but definitely a sustained, entertaining volley, with a few insane through-the-legs shots thrown in.


Also noted

Catastrophe (Amazon, noon, Friday): Molly Eichel continues to sing the praises of this tartly sweet British import about a just-met couple trying to figure out if staying together because of their one-night-stand baby is a good idea. Tonight, Rob meets Sharon’s parents, who are about as thrilled as you’d imagine to meet the goofy American who knocked up their adult daughter.

The Amazing World Of Gumball (Cartoon Network, 6 p.m., Friday): The A.V. Club’s own Kevin Johnson makes a pretty startling claim in his review of this animated kids’ show. Right off the bat, he makes it. Damn, Kevin.


The Spoils Before Dying (IFC, 9 & 9:30 p.m., Friday): What a long, strange trip it’s been for Michael Kenneth Williams’ jazzman detective Rock Banyon in this hilarious and intentionally terrible comedy miniseries, what with being framed for murder and occasionally replaced by an unconvincing miniature and all. Emily L. Stephens concludes her whirlwind two-a-day reviews of bloated never-was writer/director Eric Jonrosh’s non-masterpiece tonight, as Rock may or may not discover the culprits behind the murder of his love Fresno Foxglove. You know, the Topanga Songbird? You know her.

Power (Starz, 9 p.m., Saturday): Since the protagonist of this surprise hit Starz series is a criminal named Ghost, we can all agree that Joshua Alston showed great restraint in waiting until last week’s episode to use the tagline “Ghost Busted.”

Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell (BBC America, 10 p.m., Saturday): Strange keeps using his magic to fiddle with British history, this time helping turn the tide at Waterloo. Sadly, his hopes for a nice, peaceful post-war cuppa (perhaps whipped up by a talking teapot and her teacup son) are ruined when the Gentleman takes umbrage. Caitlin PenzeyMoog suggests some sort of wand-based defense.


Elsewhere in TV Club

We’re all like a big, hugely opinionated family here at the AV Club, as you know, so Sibling Week has us all fired up with brother-and-sisterly pride. This week’s AVQ&A has us recasting all over the place, as we list our choices for the roles where we’d like to see one sibling take over for another. If that causes some awkward family dinners in Hollywood, well, we’re very sorry. Sibling jealousy continues with Gwen Ihnat’s Watch This feature on the 1955 classic Picnic, where a shirtless William Holden stirs up trouble between small-town sisters Kim Novak and Susan Strasberg. Then Mike D’Angelo continues his one-man film course with his newest Scenic Routes feature. This time, he examines how a less-famous scene in Captain Phillips shows how one might realistically react to, say, pirates taking over your boat. And fans of the bonkers animated series Invader Zim will be happy to know that the adorable li’l psycho is coming back in comic book form. They should also take pleasure in A.C. Levine’s interview with Zim creator Jhonen Vasquez.

What else is on

Chris Tucker Live (Netflix, 3:01 a.m., Friday): Do you hear the words that are coming out of his mouth?! Well, then you’re probably watching this new standup special from motormouthed comedy machine Tucker. Or are suing him.

Defiance (Syfy, 8 p.m., Friday): Sure, present-day St. Louis has its problems, but at least they’re not being invaded by aliens every other week like the futuristic former St. Louis in this sci-fi series. Seriously, look at the state of the Gateway Arch—disgraceful. This week: again with the Votanis Collective.


Masters Of Illusion (CW, 8 p.m., Friday): Dean Cain introduces magic acts. Expect Mister Mxyzptlk to cause trouble.

Sharks Of The Shadowland (Discovery, 9 p.m., Friday): While this Shark Week special claims to be just a documentary about sharks, the title at least hints that it might actually be some sort of shark-based Game Of Thrones.

Killjoys (Syfy, 9 p.m., Friday): The sexiest bounty hunters since IG-88 end up transporting a transport full of sexy aliens while some un-sexy baddies try to shoot everyone.


The Messengers (CW, 9 p.m., Friday):The angels are divided over just who is the Horseman Of The Apocalypse Famine. Then one angel notices a really skinny Horseman pouring DDT all over some broccoli and its all settled.

Shark Clans (Discovery, 10 p.m., Friday): See? Sharks Of Thrones. It could happen.

Dark Matter (Syfy, 10 p.m., Friday): The crew is sent on a dangerous salvage mission by their handler, which seems like a lot for a bunch of amnesiacs to handle, frankly.


Lethal Seduction (Lifetime, 8 p.m., Saturday): “A mother must fight to protect her son from the delusional romantic advances of an older, predatory woman who has become obsessed with him.” The son is, like, “Mommmm…back off.”

The Millers (CBS, 8 & 8:30 p.m., Saturday): Will Arnett, Margo Martindale, and Beau Bridges play out the string on this cancelled sitcom about three great actors doing a lot of fart comedy. Shhh, gang—it’ll all be over soon. (The last two episodes are burned off next week.)

The McCarthys (CBS, 9 & 9:30 p.m., Saturday): But the end has blessedly come for this other cancelled CBS sitcom, as the final two episodes of this show about a bickering Irish Catholic family in Boston drop tonight.


Family For Christmas (Hallmark, 9 p.m., Saturday): If only it were about Hannibal making a pun before eating his entire family for holiday dinner.

Atlantis (BBC America, 9 p.m., Saturday): Pasiphae seizes Atlantis and Ariadne, while the menfolk head up into the mountains to hide. Poor Ariadne and all, but getting to high ground in Atlantis seems like a pretty smart move.

Building Belushi (DIY, 10 & 10:30 p.m., Saturday): Sure, it’s about Jim Belushi building a summer home in Oregon, but the title suggests a secret government project to create a bionic Jim Belushi. For what purpose? No man can say.


Oh, dear God, no


Pan American Games 2015 (ESPN, 7:30 p.m., Friday & 8 p.m., Saturday)
CFL Football: Montreal At Winnipeg (ESPN2, 7 p.m., Friday)
Gold Cup Soccer: USA VS. Haiti (Fox Sports 1, 8:30 p.m., Friday)
Wimbledon (NBC, 9 a.m., Saturday)
Scottish Open Golf (NBC, 12 p.m., Saturday)
PGA Golf: John Deere Classic (CBS, 3 p.m., Saturday)
LPGA Golf: U.S. Women’s Open (Fox, 2:30 p.m., Saturday)
MLB: Tigers At Twins (Fox Sports 1, 4 p.m., Saturday)
MLB Baseball: Teams To Be Determined! (Fox, 7 p.m., Saturday)


In case you missed it

Wayward Pines: Now that [REDACTED] knows Wayward Pines is actually [REDACTED], then tonight [REDACTED] [REDACTEDS] [REDACTED]. Alex McCown fills in the blanks.