Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Pretty little lie yourself into thinking you can unwrap the secrets of Pretty Little Liars’ midseason finale

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Tuesday, August 27. All times are Eastern.


Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family, 8 p.m.): For a show marked by labyrinthine plotting, mysteries stacked precipitously on top of mysteries, and a tendency to mystify even the viewers who’ve been watching from the very beginning, Pretty Little Liars has yet to pull one over on The A.V. Club’s Joe Reid. Which is good, because if it weren’t for Joe’s entertaining character-by-character breakdowns of each episode, your What’s On Tonight? correspondent would have no idea what’s been happening leading up to this fourth-season act break. Actually, scratch that—even with the aid of these reviews, we can’t tell an Aria from a Hanna. (And we’re pretty sure it’s spelled “Arya,” show.)



Nine For IX (ESPN, 8 p.m.): The August wind-down—to be followed by the September ramp-up—extends to ESPN, which ends its celebration of Title IX’s 40th anniversary with a look at the ways in which physical appearance and marketing factor into women’s sport. In the interest of surveying the subjects on the basis of athletic prowess, Kevin McFarland will compose his review while blindfolded.


So You Think You Can Dance (Fox, 8 p.m.): Guest judge Jesse Tyler Ferguson has been nominated for an Emmy for his work on Modern Family in all four of its seasons—but in the first three go-rounds, he’s been bested by a co-star. To make up for Ed O’Neill’s inevitable win at this year’s ceremony, Oliver Sava suggests that SYTYCD at least give Ferguson free passes on the Hot Tamale Train.

Suits (USA, 10:01 p.m.): The Ava Hessington case is the cause of a lot of stress within the halls of Pearson Darby Specter these days. There seems to be an easy solution to that dilemma—dump the client—but that would mean Carrie Raisler would have to part with Michelle Fairley all over again. And isn’t one time enough times, television?



Six Feet Under (1 p.m.): John Teti approaches “Everyone Leaves”—and if he hadn’t already seen the episode, he’d be worried about staring at 60 minutes of empty Six Feet Under sets, at which point he’d begin a Where’s Waldo-style search for the missing Fishers.


The Office (Classic) (3 p.m.): After clearing some of the air last week, The Office gets down to the business of thickening its ongoing romantic plots. It also gets down to the business of sending Michael to New York City, a development which has forever informed Erik Adams’ preferences for national/multinational chain eateries.


The March (PBS, 9 p.m.): Do what Meredith Artley, managing editor of CNN.com couldn’t and peel your attention away from Mileygate for a second to remind yourself that it was 50 years ago tomorrow that Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech. If not for yourself, then do it for society as a whole.


Twisted (ABC Family, 9 p.m.): Like its timeslot companion, this teen soap also heads into a hiatus after tonight. Though, like Pretty Little Liars, duplicity abounds on Twisted, so maybe it’s not going away—maybe it’s going into hiding until it can get what it has coming to it. Revenge will be Twisted’s! Hahahaha!

Drunk History (Comedy Central, 10 p.m.): It’s last call on soused storytelling for the time being, ending with a series of poorly related tales of the Old West—a period during which all history was drunk history. Yee-haw! [Hiccups. Accidentally sets of six shooter. A horse whinnies in the distance. Eric Thurm scrawls a review on soiled parchment.]


The Jeselnik Offensive (Comedy Central, 10:30 p.m.): Kevin McFarland claims that the most recent series of Jeselnik Offensives—particularly the Eric Andre-TJ Miller installment—have threatened to crack the host’s meticulously crafted persona. With Nick Kroll and John Mulaney slated to guest tonight, we hope that persona gives way to a full-on Oh, Hello universe takeover orchestrated by Gil Faizon and George St. Geegland.

You Can Count On Me (Sundance, 8 p.m.): No matter what you do, no matter how badly you may want it, this Oscar-nominated film starring Laura Linney and Mark Ruffalo as sister and brother simply refuses to be a feature-length adaptation of the My Two Dads intro sequence. And you can count on that.


Throw Momma From The Train (WGN America, 8 p.m.): The broadcast of this Billy Crystal-Danny DeVito feature may confirm that WGN America turns into mid-’90s Comedy Central when there’s no Cubs or Sox game to simulcast.

Madden NFL 14 Pigskin Pro-Am (NBC Sports, 8 p.m.): In which former pros and celebrities meet in a friendly scrimmage for the promotion of fake, digitalized football. And yet Madden 14 would still reflect the NFL experience more accurately even if this wasn’t a flag-football match held on the deck of a retired aircraft carrier.



The IT Crowd: With one last review, Caroline Framke turns off her coverage of this hysterical Britcom—with hopes of turning it on again whenever the show’s upcoming wrap-up special gets a Stateside airdate.


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