Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Thursday, January 8. All times are Eastern.
Archer (FX, 10 p.m.): Last year’s “Archer Vice” season shook up the Archer format. But according to creator Adam Reed, the show is getting back to basics in season six. This “un-reboot” will focus on more case-of-the-week stories without losing the narrative shifts introduced last season. That means Lana has a new baby in tow and Krieger may or may not be a clone-bruder. Caroline Framke—who also may or may not be a clone-bruder—will be providing weekly coverage of this streamlined season. Pour a glass of vodka, grab a donut, and read along. (Just, you know, watch out for ants.)
Babylon (Sundance, 10 p.m.): This British cop dramedy hops across the pond to the Sundance Channel. The London-set series follows both the officers and the PR department of the Metro Police Service. Danny Boyle co-created the show and directed the first episode. We dispatched Genevieve Valentine to check it out.
Portlandia (IFC, 10 p.m.): The season five premiere of Portlandia forgoes the usual sketch show structure and flashes back to 1991 to tell “The Story of Toni and Candace.” It turns out the owners of the Women & Women First feminist bookstore weren’t always so close. Les Chappell recommends enjoying this tense episode with a calming cup of cap-a-tu-tu-tu tea.
Adventure Time (Cartoon Network, 7 p.m.): Way back in 2010, Adventure Time debuted with an episode titled “Slumber Party Panic.” And now the show returns to the slumber party setting once more. Tonight’s episode is titled “The Pajama War,” so musical theater aficionado Oliver Sava naturally sang it to the titular tune from The Pajama Game.
The Big Bang Theory (CBS, 8 p.m.)
A To Z (NBC, 9:30 p.m.)
Elementary (CBS, 10 p.m.)
Parenthood (NBC, 10 p.m.)
Futurama (10 a.m.): For its first season finale, Futurama pays homage to Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory. Zack Handlen invites readers to come with him to a world of pure imagination (and Slurm soda).
In the second half of the last edition of Survey Says, stars like Bob Odenkirk, Vanessa Bayer, Maria Bamford, and Paul Scheer share the entertainment they’re looking forward to in 2015.
We also have a brand new Random Roles with character actor Curtis Armstrong. He chats about his TV roles on everything from Moonlighting to Supernatural to New Girl, and, of course, shares stories from his start in 1980s cult classics like Revenge Of The Nerds.
Steven Universe (Cartoon Network, 6:30 p.m.): Steven gets paranoid about warp streams. So long as he doesn’t cross them, he should be fine.
Regular Show (Cartoon Network, 7:30 p.m.): Caught up in the moment at Eileen’s Christmas party, Mordecai kissed his ex-girlfriend Margaret right in front of current girlfriend, C.J. Now Mordecai has to reconcile with C.J. and inform her that Margaret is moving back to town. Should be fun.
Mom (CBS, 8:30 p.m.): After hosting the People’s Choice Awards last night, Anna Faris and Allison Janney usher in the winter premiere of Mom with a little help from guest star Colin Hanks.
Expedition Unknown (Travel, 9 p.m.): This brand new series travels the globe to investigate iconic legends. The two-hour premiere centers on Amelia Earhart and her mysterious disappearance. Spoiler alert: She’s been reincarnated as Hilary Swank this whole time.
Enchanted (E!, 8 p.m.): Come for Amy Adam’s enchanting performance as a Disney princess transported to modern day New York. Stay for James Marsden’s scene stealing turn as her empty-headed prince.
Rhapsody In Blue (TCM, 10 p.m.): This 1945 fictionalized biopic charts the life of legendary composer George Gershwin. It features performances from Gershwin’s real life friends Al Jolson, Oscar Levant, Paul Whiteman, Anne Brown, and Hazel Scott.
College Basketball: Michigan State at Iowa (ESPN, 7 p.m.): It’s a battle of Midwestern team vs. Midwestern team so expect politeness and casseroles all around.
Empire: Joshua Alston kicks off his weekly coverage of this Fox melodrama about a hip hop mogul looking to bequeath his empire to one of his three sons.