Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Friday, June 19 and Saturday, June 20. All times are Eastern.
A Deadly Adoption (Lifetime, 8 p.m., Saturday): At first we thought it was real. Then it seemed like an April Fools’ Day prank. But now this Will Ferrell/Kristen Wiig Lifetime movie has actually arrived, with the SNL alums playing a seemingly perfect couple whose attempts to adopt running into some serious The Hand That Rocks The Cradle territory. Speaking of serious—is this just a goof? If so, is the goof that Wiig and Ferrell are going to play the whole thing completely straight? If that’s so, is this the greatest conceptual bit of all time? And even if it’s an astounding act of Andy Kaufman-esque provocation, is the joke sustainable for 90 minutes? The trailer offers no clues, but Joshua Alston is confident he can define just what the hell this thing is.
Catastrophe (Amazon, noon): The online-retail giant with showbiz aspirations snuck this charming little import under the radar—but nothing gets past Molly Eichel. She’ll be tracking Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney’s adventures in pregnancy every Friday for the next five weeks.
Childrens Hospital (Adult Swim, 11:59 p.m., Friday): LaToya Ferguson returns just in time for the sixth season to exit, with Blake’s decision that he’s had enough of the “kick me” signs, meaning that, perhaps, the door won’t hit Childrens Hospital on the way out.
Orphan Black (BBC America, 9 p.m., Saturday): And Caroline Framke returns to watch Orphan Black leave us all cloneless and bereft for a whole year. Last week: surprising revelations about the Castor original had Sarah, Felix, and Mrs. S. all flummoxed. This week: so much more flummoxing. Plus, Helena’s killing guys again. After you’ve absorbed the finale (and Caroline Framke’s review thereof), check out Caroline’s season-overview interview with Orphan Black co-creator Graeme Manson for the skinny on season three.
Star Wars Rebels (Disney XD, 9 p.m., Saturday): Kevin Johnson’s back on the Rebels beat for this second season premiere. Then the show goes away until the fall for some reason. Kevin was feeling all rebellious, too.
Power (Starz, 9 p.m., Saturday): Ghost and Angela take a trip to Miami and pretend they’re a real couple. While that’s nice and all, as Joshua Alston’s review pointed out last week, Ghost’s double life isn’t really conducive to long-term happiness:
Power is about the uncomfortable relationship between fantasy and reality. Ghost feeds his customers’ high-life fantasies at Truth, with VIP treatment and cascading Ciroc, then indulges them further with top-shelf cocaine. But the glamorous life comes with some awfully ugly consequences: relationship instability, addiction, legal woes, financial ruin, and overexposure to the music of Pitbull. Part of what makes Power such a tragedy is that Ghost isn’t just the owner; he’s also a client. He’s every bit as addicted to a fantasy as his customers, one with grave consequences not only for him, but for his family and for anyone connected to his massive empire. And like any addict, Ghost goes to great extremes to justify his reckless behavior and keep the good times rolling.
Oh, and Angela’s a federal prosecutor. So, you know, that, too. Josh continues his reviews of this surprise hit series tonight.
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell (BBC America, 10 p.m., Saturday): Strange and Norrell finally get together, as Strange’s growing magical powers drive him to seek out Norrell as a magical mentor. Caitlin PenzeyMoog saw lots of promise in the first episode of this series based on the novel by Susanna Clarke—now that these two crazy kids are finally together, she’s imagining things get even more magical. There may be toads, possibly eye of newt.
Orange Is The New Black (Netflix): Myles McNutt’s reviews will be up at 1 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Sense8 (Netflix): Caroline Siede fills in for Rowan Kaiser for episode seven.
Elsewhere in TV Club
You know we A.V. Clubbers are easily influenced—we just wanna be cool, dammit! So, in this week’s AVQ&A, some of the most honest of us share the pop cultural product placement that swayed us with its shiny, shiny magic. Then, those of us with lingering father issues take part in this week’s A.V. To Z about an alphabet’s worth of the worst pop culture dads of all time. After that, check out Alex McCown’s interview with horror movie legend and cool guy Joe Dante as he talks about his new film Burying The Ex, and why the Dark Knight movies are a fascist fantasy world. Do not question Mr. Dante. After that, fill up your weekend checking out another great Random Roles, as Will Harris makes character actor extraordinaire William Sadler comb through his own IMDb page. And don’t worry—Will did ask him about Wonderfalls.
What else is on
Defiance (Syfy, 8 p.m., Friday): There’s a new alien race mucking up the already tenuous peace in the city of Defiance (formerly St. Louis). Rowan Kaiser dropped in for the season three premiere last week—if you want The A.V. Club to cover it weekly, you should really just pester the heck out of us. (Meaning Erik—he enjoys it.)
The Briefcase (CBS, 8 p.m., Friday): Does anyone else feel like this “pit the poors against each other” reality competition show was somehow created by C. Montgomery Burns? “Look at them Smithers—these Polly Pinchpennies and Sammy Sadsacks are squabbling over this satchel of dirty dollar bills. Little do they know that they’re scrabbling closer and closer to the poisoned dollar!”
U.S. Open Championship (Fox, 8 p.m., Friday): Oh, they’re golfin’ all right. (The third round coverage starts on Saturday at 2 p.m.)
Killjoys (Syfy, 9 p.m., Friday): In the premiere of this newest Syfy original series, a trio of sexy, fun-loving bounty hunters refuse to let their galaxy’s impending civil war to keep them from having all the sexy outer space times. A.V. Club newcomer Steven Shehori drops in for the first episode.
Great Performances: At The Met—The Merry Widow (PBS, 9 p.m., Friday): Now that both the hockey and basketball playoffs are over, it’s time to bring that energy to this production of Franz Lehár’s operetta about a rich widow and the gold-digging suitor after her dough. The widow is favored by two points. Don’t question it.
Dark Matter (Syfy, 10 p.m., Friday): In the second episode of this new sci-fi series, the crew of the S.S. Space Amnesia continues to uncover sketchy details about who they are while trying to figure out what side of the impending war they’re on.
CollegeHumor’s Comedy Music Hall Of Fame (IFC, 10 p.m., Friday): All-around dapper funnyman Paul F. Tompkins hosts this salute to comedy music (as opposed to musical comedy). The requisite Weird Al Yankovic tribute is planned.
Vice (HBO, 11 p.m., Friday): Tune in for your Friday night dose of impotent sadness as this HBO newsmagazine turns its gaze toward the continuing efforts against the Taliban in Afghanistan, and the rise of religious intolerance in France.
The Perfect Match (Hallmark, 9 p.m., Saturday): When a couple hires two competing wedding planners for their upcoming nuptials, what are the odds that those opinionated, warring wedding planners who hate each other at first sight are going to fall in love and have their own wedding, and argue about their own wedding planning? Anyone? Odds? It’s a Hallmark movie, if that helps.
Father’s Day Kung Fu Marathon! (El Rey, all Saturday and Sunday): Robert Rodriguez’s cable network honors dad in the best way it knows how—lots and lots of violence! Celebrating the work of legendary Shaw Brothers director Chang Cheh, El Rey has programmed a non-stop chop-socky fest, including the flicks The Assassin, The Boxer From Shantung, The Heroic Ones, Disciples Of Shaolin, and The Kid With The Golden Arm on Saturday, and Masked Avengers, The Kid With The Golden Arm, One-Armed Swordsman, Return Of The One-Armed Swordsman, The Five Deadly Venoms, and Crippled Masters on Sunday. Your dad will thank you.
In case you missed it
Hannibal: Molly Eichel makes her signature articulate examination of this week’s Hannibal. Which is better than the “Gaaaahhhh!!” most of us can manage on first viewing.