Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Tuesday, December 30. All times are Eastern.
Benched (USA, 10 p.m.): Erstwhile Trophy Wife costar Michaela Watkins has done well for herself since the end of her short-lived ABC sitcom, considering she moved right onto co-creating this charming legal comedy. And, for tonight’s hour-long season finale, Watkins is bringing her on-screen adoptive son into the mix, as Albert Tsai—better known, now and forever, as BERT!—shows up in the first episode as a kid that Trent is probably manipulating to some questionable end. That’s just his way, after all, but we’re betting BERT!—sorry, sorry, “young Walter”—might show him a thing or two. Let Emily L. Stephens explain all one more time.
Selfie (Hulu, 8:30 p.m.): The last ever new episode of Selfie will be available on Hulu later today, wrapping up the show’s abbreviated run. Will the episode stumble like the past two, making us think the cancellation might be just as well, or is this last episode going to make Brandon Nowalk laugh and cry all over again? Eh, he might do all that anyway.
Mozart In The Jungle (Amazon): So, we’ll admit that we may have totally spaced on listing this last week for its debut. But fear not! As our intrepid Vikram Murthi has diligently reported for the past week, this drama about life behind the scenes at the symphony has gotten really damn good, with yesterday’s featured episode a series-best effort. Can today’s episode match it? Only Vikram knows for sure. (Well, him and anyone else who has already streamed the full series. Streaming service shows are tricky that way.)
What else is on?
King Of The Hill (Cartoon Network, 8:30 p.m.): We swear we don’t insist on mentioning every King Of The Hill rerun—hence why we’re not specifically highlighting 8 p.m.’s “Full Metal Dust Jacket,” which is good but not an all-time great—but we’ve got an all-time classic on the docket for 8:30: “Megalo Dale,” in which Arlen’s finest exterminator locks himself in the local Megalomart overnight to hunt that most dangerous of prey: smooth jazz legend Chuck Mangione.
Kennedy Center Honors (CBS, 9 p.m.): Stephen Colbert—who we guess is officially between gigs at the moment, which is just so damn weird—is on hand to host this year’s ceremony, which honors Al Green, Tom Hanks, ballerina Patricia McBride, Sting, and Lily Tomlin. We’re going to go ahead and guess Colbert’s monologue here will be slightly less cutting than the thermonuclear bomb he dropped at the 2006 White House Correspondents’ Dinner. So if you’re looking for a particularly spurious argument for why the move to network television had made Colbert lose his edge, here you go!
Escaping Polygamy (Lifetime, 9 p.m.): For reasons unknown, Stephen Colbert will not be hosting this hopefully hard-hitting (but possibly just melodramatic and lurid, that’s certainly a possibility) look at survivors of polygamous families and their efforts to help others escape similar situations.
The Legend Of Mick Dodge (National Geographic, 9 p.m.): The third season kicks off in style, what with the raft excursions and dudes wearing mud instead of clothing and an all-important subplot in which the title character “heads to town when he gets a craving for a burger and shake.” Yeah, we don’t have the foggiest idea what this is about. Still, audacity points for kicking off a new season the day before New Year’s Eve, we guess.
The Family Man (WGN, 8 p.m.): And now another edition of “Huh, so the TV Guide listings thinks it’s a movie reviewer now, huh?” Our topic, the Nicolas Cage movie in which a lonely, heartless businessman wakes up married to the great lost love of his life. And TV Guide’s verdict: “Charming performances but schmaltzy.” Yeah, that’s probably fair.
Lionheart (Flix, 10:05 p.m.): So apparently this Jean-Claude Van Damme movie is not a biopic about Richard I, the crusader king, but rather tells the story of “deserter working an underground boxing circuit in the U.S.” We guess it’s possible he’ll turn out to be the immortal Richard the Lionheart in disguise or something, but we’re not holding out hope.
Music City Bowl: Notre Dame vs. LSU/Belk Bowl: Georgia vs. Louisville/Foster Farms Bowl: Maryland vs. Stanford (ESPN, 3 p.m./6:30 p.m./10 p.m.): It’s the last day of bowls before the really big-ticket matchups begin, and at least a couple of these should be good: LSU coach Les Miles’ brand of grass-fed craziness should work well against the perpetually irate Brian Kelly and the Fighting Irish, while Georgia’s star freshman running back Nick Chubb will try to do his thing against Louisville’s highly ranked rushing defense. The Maryland-Stanford game is a little less exciting, admittedly, but keep in mind this hilarious fact: Because of the ridiculousness of conference realignment, this could totally be a Rose Bowl someday!
In case you missed it
Mozart In The Jungle: No, seriously, everyone, that last episode was really something special! Let Vikram Murthi tell you all about it! (Sorry again for forgetting your show, Vikram!)