TOP PICK, ALSO NOTED, AND REGULAR COVERAGE
Comedy Bang Bang! (IFC, 10:30 p.m.): Well, we’ve run out of TV to write about. All those finales last week actually exhausted the entirety of our Thursday-night regular coverage. We’re awful lucky we’ve got Comedy Bang! Bang! to tide us over a dry season. Fortunately, as thunderstorms are starting to crop up here in Chicago, weird summer television is also beginning to rear its weird head. Like: an Animal Planet special about a man-eating super-snake, and a miniseries on The CW about a labyrinth, and The American Bible Challenge. But when you’re not watching that, you should check in on Scott Aukerman and Reggie Watts—Emily Stephens will be, and she’d sure like it if you kept her company.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Friday Night Lights (2 p.m.): After skipping out last week to do some thing called “upfronts,” Sonia Saraiya is back to cover Friday Night Lights’ “It’s Different For Girls,” an episode that makes certain members of What’s On Tonight cry with regularity, and may also represent the pinnacle of Minka Kelly’s career. There’s also another pretty heartbreaking episode right after it: “Nevermind,” the ballad of Matt Saracen’s annoying dad. Hopefully you’re prepared for a very long and gushy review, sports fans.
ELSEWHERE IN TV CLUB
Brandon Nowalk reviewed HBO’s adaptation of the groundbreaking play The Normal Heart for us, and found it a bit wanting. Larry Kramer’s script stands the test of time, but Glee creator Ryan Murphy’s take on it? Not so much. And in honor of The Americans finale last night, Todd VanDerWerff did a walkthrough with showrunners Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields. So you know you’ll want to read that.
WEIRD SUMMER TV TIME!
Man-Eating Zombie Cats (Animal Planet, 7 p.m.): We think the title speaks for itself, but just in case, here’s Animal Planet’s description of this program: “They’re the most ruthless killers on earth and out of control. A zombie-like pathogen is spreading to big cats around the world, removing their fear of human civilization. These predators have a thirst for blood, and we’re their next target.” Or as TV Guide’s rather restrained description pithily states: “Examining the possibility that humans could become part of the diet of large cats.”
Devoured: Man-Eating Super Snake Returns: Supersized (Animal Planet, 8 p.m.): And in the next installment of important, crucial coverage of That Which Eats Man: “An alien species is out of control in America—the Burmese python. Breeding more and more, swallowing bigger and bigger prey, they’re proving even humans are fair game. Can anything stop these man-eaters before it’s too late?”
The American Bible Challenge (GSN, 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.): TV Guide is reliably curt: “A game show in which teams answer questions about the Bible.” We very deeply and desperately want to watch this.
Last Comic Standing (NBC, 9 p.m.): Some show attempts to find the funniest people in America—for the eighth season! Roseanne Barr, Keenen Ivory Wayans and Russell Peters are the judges. So, you know, that’s a panel you trust.
The Mummy (AMC, 7 p.m.): We are all librarians in this lovely, farcical action-flick about a mummy, and some plagues, and drinking while on an archaeological dig in the early 1900s. Don’t eat the scarabs.
Ghostbusters (Esquire TV, 8 p.m.): It appears that fledgling network Esquire has a very small stable of films it’s acquired the rights to—and then it plays them over and over again. Thematically, this would be more appropriate with Groundhog Day. They really ought to check into that.
Stanley Cup Playoffs: Game three, Canadiens at Rangers (NBC Sports, 8 p.m.): It’s the Eastern Conference finals, and we are celebrating by bringing Montreal to New York in order to party! Woooooo hockey!
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Modern Family: Joshua Alston reviewed this whole season for you, and boy, are his arms tired! Modern Family ends the season the way every comedy should—with a dysfunctional wedding.