Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Thursday, April 14. All times are Eastern.
Grey’s Anatomy (ABC, 8 p.m.): How much Grey’s Anatomy is too much Grey’s Anatomy? As Lindsay Lohan would say, “The limit does not exist.” At least that’s how Caroline Siede feels, which is good because ABC is airing a two-hour block of Grey’s tonight. In the first half, the hospital is put on lockdown and one of the doctors decides to operate without proper equipment. In the second, that doctor faces possible disciplinary action for his choice. Admittedly, a disciplinary hearing sounds like a pretty disappointing conclusion to a high-stakes lockdown situation (especially since this show has already featured a massive ferry crash, a hospital shooting, and a plane crash), but 12 seasons in we’ll take what we can get.
30 For 30 (ESPN, 9 p.m.): “Do You Believe In Magic”? Well this new 30 For 30 does! Or at least the episode focuses on the Shaquille O’Neal-led Orlando Magic teams of the 1990s. Since those teams had “Magic To Do” we asked Noel Murray to check out all “Those Magic Changes” documented in the episode. Let’s just hope he doesn’t take a “Magic Carpet Ride” instead. Not that he ever would. Because as The Police once sang, “Every Little Thing Noel Does Is Magic.” (Or, you know, something like that…)
Orphan Black (BBC America, 10 p.m.): Orphan Black is orphan back, baby! Everyone’s favorite clones return for more science, more family drama, and hopefully no more terrible clone dance parties. According to Alex McCown’s pre-air review of the fourth season, “After the labyrinthine complications of last season, the series has course-corrected efficiently, with minimal narrative disruption. This return to core characters and streamlined stories manifests itself from the very first episode…[The season four premiere] re-examines some of the building blocks of this universe, but even better, it sets up the new season’s overriding arc without having to create yet another thicket of villains and conspiracies.” Clone Clubber Lisa Weidenfeld is taking on weekly reviews with the analytic eye of Cosima, the dedication of Alison, and the unbridled enthusiasm of Helena.
Premieres and finales
Bones (Fox, 8 p.m.): After hibernating for most of the winter, Bones returns with its midseason premiere. The team is still recovering from the massive explosion that left one character paralyzed in the fall finale, but everyone must press on as Booth and Brennan are tasked with investigating the death of a public defender.
Strong (NBC, 8 p.m.): Okay technically this Sylvester Stallone-produced reality series premiered yesterday, but it debuts in its regular time slot here. The setup is that 10 male trainers are paired with 10 female trainees who want to become not only slimmer but also stronger. Each week the contestants face off in a series of challenges before two teams compete in the final American Ninja Warrior-esque “Elimination Tower.” There’s definitely something weirdly regressive about the whole thing (the men teach the women about strength! The women teach the men about emotional bonds!), especially since the trailer introduces the fairly average-sized women with testimonials in which they describe themselves as disgustingly unfit. For instance, here’s the woman who claims her husband couldn’t look at her naked before her transformation!
Sounds like she needs a new husband, not a new trainer.
American Grit (Fox, 9 p.m.): And if NBC’s reality fitness competition series isn’t enough for you, Fox has an option as well! And this one is hosted by the none other than John Cena. Four military veterans serve as mentors for teams of athletic competitors, including a celebrity fitness trainer, an ex-NFL player, a lumberjack, and a roller-derby skater.
After The Black (BBC America, 11 p.m.): BBC America bravely attempts to break-up Chris Hardwick’s post-show talk show monopoly. On After The Black (which really should’ve been Yakking Black), InnerSPACE hosts Ajay Fry, Morgan Hoffman, and Teddy Wilson break down the latest episode of Orphan Black while offering behind-the-scenes videos and future predictions. Tatiana Maslany and Kevin Hanchard are booked as the show’s first guests, although if Maslany were to play both herself and Hanchard we’d probably never know the difference.
Parks And Recreation, “Gin It Up!” (Netflix): Sure Tatiana Maslany kills it as roughly 47 different characters on Orphan Black, but did you know she’s also a trained improviser? Maslany shows off her comedy skills on Parks & Rec during a two-episode arc that kicks off in “Gin It Up!”