Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Thursday, April 19. All times are Eastern.
Parks And Recreation (NBC, 9:30 p.m.): It’s only been one month since Parks And Recreation moved aside to let its buddy Community finally air the second half of its third season—but it seems like so much longer, right? Return to Pawnee tonight to meet Councilman Pillner, the bespectacled Bradley Whitford character who controls the fate of the Parks Department. As TV Club Classic’s West Wing correspondent, Steve Heisler demands an Amy Poehler-Bradley Whitford walk-and-talk.
The Vampire Diaries (The CW, 8 p.m.): Mystic Falls also fell off the TV map in recent weeks, but The Vampire Diaries roars back to life tonight by fleeing its main locale for… scenic Denver! While in The Mile-High City, Carrie Raisler recommends the characters dine at Casa Bonita, Colorado’s premier Mexican restaurant/tacky tourist attraction.
American Idol (Fox, 8 p.m.): So if the judges saved Jessica last week, does that mean we’re losing two Idol hopefuls tonight? Or is the show going to pull a Voice and let the judges randomly and unceremoniously shed talent? Everything in Emily Yoshida’s world is turning upside down.
Community (NBC, 8 p.m.): We have a feeling that everyone will draw parallels between the latest Community—where Annie and Abed spend time together in the Dreamatorium—and last season’s stellar “Critical Film Studies.” Why wait until the review posts to do so? Both come at similar points in their respective seasons, both involve a character gaining unprecedented insight into Abed’s psyche, and, spookiest of all, Todd VanDerWerff is wearing the same shirt he wore when he reviewed “Critical Film Studies.”
30 Rock (NBC, 8:30): Something’s wrong with the couches produced at Jack’s new factory. If NBC’s promos for the episode are any indication, the problem with the couches is that they’re designed to eat TV writers. If this is the point where 30 Rock fully transforms into The Muppet Show, then it’s a perfect time for Meredith Blake to start reviewing the show full-time.
The Secret Circle (The CW, 9 p.m.): Cassie has a previously unknown sibling, which means it’s finally time for The Secret Circle to pull some Parent Trap-style sibling mischief—with magic. Katherine Miller can’t wait until the Blackwell kids mirror each other’s motions—with magic!
The Office (NBC, 9 p.m.): Beneath Andy Bernard’s tweedy exterior is the raging brute who once punched a hole in an office wall. With Nellie potentially pushing him out of the manager’s chair, “Angry Andy” comes back with a vengeance. Myles McNutt grabs the spackle.
Awake (NBC, 10 p.m.): “Nightswimming,” Michael Stipe once sang, “Deserves a quiet night.” In the hour of Awake titled “Nightswimming,” a couple entering the witness-protection program deserves an echo, provided by the Britten's preparations to leave town—and the possible collapse of one of Michael’s realities. Zack Handlen forgot his shirt by the water’s edge.
Eagleheart (Cartoon Network, midnight): We have no idea what a “Beezor” is, but it’s apparently solid and hairy, and somehow produced by Bret’s body. In other words, it’s the perfect device on which to base an episode of Eagleheart. Kevin McFarland is standing by with a medical-waste container.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (11 a.m.): Cardassian exile Garak learns of a young Cardassian raised—gasp!—by Bajorans, in what sounds like a good starting point for an old-school, science-fiction allegory told DS9-style. Zack Handlen is checking the episode’s IMDB page to see if Ben Hargrove received a writing credit.
Seinfeld (1 p.m.): They said it couldn’t be done, but nearly two years after David Sims set out to review all 180 episodes (give or take some clip shows) of Seinfeld, he’s finally come to the end. Be a good Samaritan and take some time to congratulate David before arguing about the classic sitcom’s still-contentious finale.
Cheers (3 p.m.): Wounds fresh and old heal slowly around the bar, where Coach learns a beloved teammate once made a play for his wife, while Norm, back with Vera but obviously still stinging from their separation, is tempted to step out on his old lady. Will cooler heads prevail? And will it be funny?
WHAT ELSE IS ON?
Truck Stop USA (Travel, 8 p.m.): There are those who take up nobler causes than you or I, those like Truck Stop USA host Joe Bechtold, who attempts to eat 70 ounces of sausage gravy in under one hour tonight. He’s truly doing God’s work.
Kathy (Bravo, 10 p.m.): Kathy Griffin reunites with the Real Housewives network, staking the claim that she invented Chelsea Handler’s shtick by going on a full hour before Chelsea Lately. Of course, Joan Rivers could say the same thing about both comedians, but the only way she’ll bring up her short-lived talk show is in a biting, self-deprecating standup routine.
Jesus Conspiracies (Discovery, 10 p.m.): Many, many people are familiar with the Christmas and Easter stories. But what kinds of crazy mischief did Jesus of Nazareth get into in his early 20s? Casting out convenience store owners? Punking the blind and pantsing the sick? Turning water into bong water and producing 4,000 anchovy pizzas? Committing anything as blasphemous as the last three sentences?
Independent Lens: Revenge Of The Electric Car (PBS, 10 p.m.): In which muscle cars boost nebbish, science-obsessed electric cars from their Detroit digs, and the electric cars have no other recourse but to spy on the muscle cars girlfriends before winning the homecoming carnival with a rousing, genre-hopping musical performance. Or, you know, a more sedate, informative follow-up to Chris Paine’s 2006 documentary, Who Killed The Electric Car.
Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows, Part 1 (MoMAX, 6:30 p.m.): The wizarding world is in a panic, and Lord Voldermort is threatening to conquer the entire planet, and… if you haven’t seen any of the previous Harry Potter films (or read the book), this isn’t the best place to start. If you have: How great is that “Tale Of Three Brothers” sequence?
Beach Party (TCM, 8 p.m.): Turner Classic Movies’ “spring break” bloc keeps twisting and doing the watusi through the day and night (you only need to stay up till 5 a.m. to catch Vincent Price in Dr. Goldfoot And The Bikini Machine!), launching a marathon of American International Pictures’ “beach party” series with the original, teenager-studying, Von-Zipper-thwarting, Frankie-and-Annette-sporting caper from 1963.
Stanley Cup Playoff: Game 4: Bruins at Capitals: The first three games of the series between Boston and Washington were each decided by a single goal. If the Bruins hope to repeat as Stanley Cup champions this year, they’ll need to start widening those leads.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Avatar: The Last Airbender: After a lengthy quest, our hero has fulfilled his destiny—yes, Hayden Childs wrapped up TV Club Classic’s coverage of Avatar, and he did a soulful job of it.