Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Sunday, June 5. All times are Eastern.
Feed The Beast (AMC, 10 p.m.): AMC has a habit of taking professions that you wouldn’t expect to power a show—high school chemistry teacher, 1980s computer programmer, shady public defender—and managing to get some genuinely compelling drama out of them. Now, they’re trying to cook up something similar with a master chef and sommelier, as Feed The Beast centers on two best friends opening a restaurant and getting caught up in family and organized crime. The series gets an early bird special premiere tonight before moving to Tuesdays. Unfortunately, despite a strong performance from David Schwimmer (enjoying a 2016 career pivot after American Crime Story), the first few courses don’t measure up to Joshua Alston’s refined palate:
Feed The Beast… gussies up clichés and dramatic tropes in the same way its characters “elevate” their fine-dining cuisine. Each episode begins with an extreme close-up of a flame igniting—sometimes in kitchen settings, most times not—before delving back into its tale of fledgling restaurateurs, a sustained metaphor that becomes exhausting after its first use. It’s beautiful to look at, but underneath the presentation, there’s just bland, lukewarm chicken breast.
Game Of Silence (NBC, 10 p.m.): Normally, we make our top pick selections based on a mix of variables—the quality of the show airing, the magnitude of its opening or closing, just where the darts are thrown on the board after our third Knob Creek on the rocks. However, tonight is the first time we’re making a pick based on pity, as the NBC nighttime soap nobody asked for reaches the end of its burnoff. Gwen Ihnat panned it for its foundation in child abuse, its lack of a compelling mystery, and its waste of Michael Raymond-James, and audiences evidently agreed with her, given that it was lucky to break three million viewers most weeks. Yet it managed to air every single episode, so at least it’s not at the bottom of the 2015-16 network TV barrel. (That particular dishonor belongs to Wicked City.)
Veep (HBO, 10:30 p.m.): It’s been a couple weeks since Jonah Ryan announced his run for Congress, and since then he’s pulled out all the stops to deliver his “New Ideas For Now”: a scarily detailed campaign website, a full-page ad in the New Hampshire Union Leader, and appointing his frenemy Dan as his campaign manager. Could he make America great again? No, of course not, since according to Kate Kulzick, “He’s the same defensive, loud-mouthed asshole he’s always been, and it’s delightful.” And with his first debate tonight, it’s a safe bet that he’ll give the pundits plenty of ammunition.
Premieres and finales
Miss USA Pageant (Fox, 7 p.m.): The slouching toward Bethlehem that is this year’s presidential election continues with no end in sight, so at this point your What’s On Tonight correspondent is prepared to say that we should throw the whole thing out entirely and pick our leader by new means. And since the 65th annual Miss USA Pageant is tonight, our vote is to hand the country over to whoever wins. The contestants usually wish for world peace in their speeches, let’s see if they can live up to their lofty desires.
Thicker Than Water: The Tankards (Bravo, 9 p.m.): The third season of the adventures of the self-described “Black Brady Bunch” wraps up tonight. Disappointingly, none of the family appears to have started a brewery this season, and if your last name is Tankard, that really feels like a colossal missed opportunity.
His Double Life (Lifetime, 9 p.m.): A young woman realizes that her stepfather is meeting up with other women, and those women are starting to turn up dead. The press release says that this was “inspired by true events,” but is fairly stingy with what exactly those events were. We’re going to assume the only true event was someone’s mother remarrying and their kid devising a worst-case scenario.
Killer Couples (Oxygen, 9 p.m.): Speaking of being based on true events, Oxygen’s series on crimes of passion wraps up its seventh season with a look at Sandy Murphy and Rick Tabish, the pair accused of murdering casino magnate Ted Binion. A drug-addicted ex-casino mogul with a passion for collecting silver? Now that’s a movie “inspired by true events” we’d watch.
Extreme RVs (Travel, 9 p.m.): Apparently there are enough people who build super-powered mini-mansion recreational vehicles that they were able to get four seasons out of it, the latest of which premieres tonight. Maybe this is the year that someone finally figured out how to make them transform into robots! It’s certain to be better than any of the Transformers films.
Ghost Asylum (Destination America, 10 p.m.): Our modern-day ghostbusters wrap up their third season by heading to Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary. The Stoney Lonesome, the Thug Jug, Mobster Trap, Pen State.
Lady Dynamite (Netflix, 6 p.m.)
The Girlfriend Experience (Starz, 8 p.m.)
Silicon Valley (HBO, 10 p.m.)
Penny Dreadful (Showtime, 10 p.m.)