Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Thursday, January 14. All times are Eastern.
Colony (USA, 10 p.m.): USA’s latest sci-fi series ticks all the genre boxes: It’s co-created by Lost’s Carlton Cuse and stars Lost’s Josh Holloway and The Walking Dead’s Sarah Wayne Callies. It’s set in a near-future dystopian Los Angeles where an unseen invading alien force keeps everyone under military rule. The Wikipedia plot summary has more jargon than you can shake a stick at, including terms like “Hosts,” “Raps,” “Proxies,” and “Redhats.” Naturally the government believes in eugenics, there’s a thriving black market that sells illegal medicines, and an insurgency has formed. Plus Holloway gets mixed up in espionage as he tries to find the son he lost in the “Arrival.” Just throw in a villain in a glass cage and we have genre bingo!
Thankfully, in his pre-air review Alex McCown notes, “What the series lacks in depth and visual elegance, it more than makes up for in sheer entertainment value. Colony combines the best aspects of USA’s past (generic shows that are nonetheless sugary treats) with the heady rush of its contemporary, Mr. Robot-era mission: Classing up the joint.”
Workaholics (Comedy Central, 10 p.m.): The boys of Workaholics are back for a sixth season. The guys move to another branch of TelAmeriCorp where they start working for a new boss and—according to the season trailer—“get weirder.” Good thing Dennis Perkins is back onboard to get weirder with them.
Idiotsitter (Comedy Central, 10:30 p.m.): Then Comedy Central debuts its female-centric Workaholics spiritual companion piece. Charlotte Newhouse’s straight-laced academic is hired to babysit Jillian Bell’s childlike 30-something millionaire. In his pre-air review Dennis Perkins notes, “The familiar setup offers a glimpse of the sort of humor viewers can expect—Newhouse looking flustered, Bell being outrageous—but the pilot endearingly spins in a couple of promising directions simultaneously.” Now Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya will keep her eye on the show with weekly reviews.
The Increasingly Poor Decisions Of Todd Margaret (11 p.m., IFC): After reviewing the first three episodes last week, LaToya Ferguson wraps up the third season of The Increasingly Poor Decisions Of Todd Margaret with the final three episodes. Let’s hope she doesn’t find IFC’s odd schedule to be an increasingly poor decision.
Adventure Time (Cartoon Network, 7:30 p.m.)
The Big Bang Theory (CBS, 8 p.m.)
Heroes Reborn (NBC, 8 p.m.)
Elementary (CBS, 10 p.m.)
TV Club Classic
Battlestar Galactica Update: Zack Handlen’s Battlestar Galactica coverage is going on winter hiatus starting today, but he (or one of his Cylon clones) will be back this spring.
Elsewhere in TV Club
We have a brand new Expert Witness with Adventure Time’s Kirsten Lepore, who chatted with us about the grueling process of creating stop motion animation.
Even when this show breaks out its prestige TV paint-by-numbers kit, it still holds some interest just as a piece of living history—like Colonial Williamsburg as a television drama… [But the show has] a lot of ground to cover. And nearly all of it comes off as contrived. Mercy Street offers a mishmash of standard-issue medical drama storylines and self-conscious attempts to tackle the social issues of the 1860s. For the most part the performances are stiffly formal, marred by bad Southern accents and the cast’s inability to make lines like “Blood is not gray or blue, madam” sound natural. (To be fair, that’s kind of an impossible task to begin with.) The Downton Abbey influence isn’t just evident in the period setting and class conflict, but also in the general indifference toward artificiality. In Downton, the exaggerated soapiness is part of the charm (sometimes). Here, it feels more like a misjudgment in tone.
What else is on?
Teen Titans Go! (Cartoon Network, 6 p.m.): Robin makes the Titans sell their treasured mementos. Lets hopes he’s willing to part with that photo of Batman he keeps in a heart-shaped frame.
The World Dog Awards (The CW, 8 p.m.): George Lopez hosts The CW’s second annual World Dog Awards. During the two-hour show, awards are given to the dog who has had the biggest impact in media, the Top TV Dog, social-media stars, and “Most Pawpular.”
Alaska Proof (Animal Planet, 9 p.m.): While The CW is airing a show about dogs, Animal Planet is airing a show about… alcohol. This brand reality TV show centers on the Alaska Distillery, which makes unusual booze like salmon-infused vodka.
Angel From Hell (CBS, 9:30 p.m.): Joey McIntyre guest stars on the second episode of Jane Lynch’s new angelic comedy.
Greatest Party Story Ever (MTV, 10:30 p.m.): MTV’s brand new series charts “outrageous tales” that are brought to life via interviews and animation. James Franco apparently plays a role in one of the stories in this premiere so Franco-philes have that to look forward to.
Gone With The Wind (TCM, 8 p.m.): Block out four hours to enjoy this 1939 epic, which remains the highest-grossing film of all time when adjusted for inflation. Vivien Leigh stars as strong-willed Scarlett O’Hara while Clark Gable is her debonair—and occasionally abusive—love interest.
Batman Begins (BBC America, 8 p.m.): “You know how it is. You’re out at night, looking for kicks, someone’s passing around the weaponized hallucinogens…”
NBA Basketball: Cavaliers at Spurs (TNT, 8 p.m.): The Cav’s embark on the “Texas Triangle” this week. After last night’s match with the Dallas Mavericks, they face off against the Spurs in San Antonio tonight, and the Houston Rockets tomorrow.
In case you missed it
Younger: Sutton Foster’s surprisingly charming TV Land comedy returns for a second season. Alexa Planje is back on the case, still trying to figure out how Foster looks so youthful.