Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Star-Crossed and its cute alien teenagers demand your attention

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Monday, February 17. All times are Eastern.

TOP PICK
Star-Crossed (The CW, 8 p.m.): Though we’re still in the drought of Olympics coverage, Monday night is still packed—with new episodes from Fox, ABC, and a whole new show from The CW. We’re covering the Olympics as we have been all week—but in the meantime, why not drop in on something new? The CW is flouting the Olympics ratings gods tonight by debuting Star-Crossed, about a human woman and an alien man who fall in love in a future where his alien race is an oppressed minority. This, and all the Romeo And Juliet references you could possibly stand (each episode is named after a line from the play). We’re taken with its sweet-but-sharp tone, which pairs endless love with, of all things, social justice. Carrie Raisler reviewed the show for us over in TV Reviews and found it to be a surprisingly moving tale of segregation and belonging—despite its trappings of teen romance and, you know, the alien thing.  Shades of District 9 or shades of Roswell? You decide!


ALSO NOTED
The 2014 Winter Olympics (NBC, 8 p.m.): It's Caroline Framke’s turn to take on the Sochi Games tonight, as the long program and medal ceremony for ice dancing will be awarded tonight. Americans Charlie White and Meryl Davis go up against their practice partners, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada. Both pairs are excellent skaters, prompting us all to wonder about their romantic histories, and also, if ice dancing is a real sport. Caroline Framke is planning a 10,000 exploration of these questions, and more.

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Almost Human (Fox, 8 p.m.): Almost Human has settled from inconsistent to pleasantly average over the course of the last few weeks, as the series works out some weird plotting from episodes aired out of order and entrenches into a long-term arc with something creepy called Insyndicate. Kevin McFarland will be your guide tonight as a “smart house” tries to kill its occupants. As he well knows, that is how you get ants.

Rick And Morty (Adult Swim, 10:30 p.m.): And just in case you missed this last week, we’re saying it again: Rick And Morty is taking a break for the next few weeks, but Zack Handlen is using this time to pick up the first few episodes we didn’t cover. Tonight, “Lawnmower Dog,” was an episode that made some of us here at What’s On Tonight laugh-cry, which is as close to a ringing endorsement as we get.

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REGULAR COVERAGE
Switched At Birth (ABC Family, 8 p.m.)
The Following (Fox, 9 p.m.)
Teen Wolf (MTV, 10 p.m.)

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ALSO ON TV CLUB
In addition to Carrie Raisler’s take on the debuting Star-Crossed, check out Zack Handlen’s 100 Episodes on the great SpongeBob SquarePants. Bikini Bottom’s crew of proud bottom-feeders made up a show that is still a touchstone for its fans. Zack explains why, and has some laughs along the way.

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WHAT ELSE IS ON?
The Bachelor (ABC, 8 p.m.): Six bachelorettes remain, and they go to Juan Pablo’s hometown, Miami, to get closer to the man who they all inexplicably want to marry. Four go on a group date with him to a private island; one gets a private date on a yacht; and one gets to meet his daughter! (Our guess is that she’s the one that goes home this week.)

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Independent Lens (PBS, 10 p.m.): This week, Independent Lens brings us “Las Marthas,” about the debutante season in sister cities Laredo, Texas and Laredo, Mexico. The result is that Mexican-American teenage girls wear expensive, Colonial-style dresses in the style of Martha Washington—which cost as much as $30,000—for their coming-out balls.

The Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills (Bravo, 8 p.m.): Kyle accidentally tells Joyce that her father died, which… rough.

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Vanderpump Rules (Bravo, 9 p.m.): The actual finale of the two-part season finale. “Reunion Part 2” offers “shattered friendships” and “controversial new alliances.” Hooray!

Veronica Guerin (TMC, 8 p.m.): We’ve always intended to watch this Joel Schumacher biopic about an Irish journalist killed while investigating the Dublin crime scene. Cate Blanchett stars in the titular role.

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The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (Nickelodeon, 8 p.m.): Now that you’ve read Zack’s 100 Episodes on the show, why not watch the movie? There is a live-action cameo by David Hasselhoff!


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Shameless: This show has taken its fans through a couple of powerhouse episodes, right in the middle of its fourth season that many of us thought the show would never get. Fiona’s in jail, Liam’s in the hospital, Frank is… also in the hospital, and the emotional affect of this show has never been higher. Joshua Alston gave last night’s episode a solid A.

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