Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Monday, January 13. All times are Eastern.
Archer (FX, 10 p.m.): Wait, we had something for this. Oh, yeah! Archer is totally back tonight, and we are literally (figuratively) back in the DANGER ZONE! Things are taking a turn for the insane this season, as ISIS gets in trouble with the FBI and then has to deal with a lot of… well… cocaine. We don't want to give too much away, but this season is shaping up to be one of the most involved season-long gags we've encountered, and with the addition of a pregnant Lana and a partially field-trained Pam, we're just happy we're aboard for the ride. We've missed the world's most incompetent secret agents and their increasingly unhinged personal lives. And Babou. We also miss Babou. BRING HIM BACK ALSO. Todd VanDerWerff and Sonia Saraiya will be alternating Archer's weekly coverage. Tonight is Todd. And for the record, he is not our supervisor.
Rick And Morty (Adult Swim, 10:30 p.m.): Guess what? We're adding regular coverage of this animated show by Dan Harmon—a few episodes into its season, but never too late for adventures! We've been a little smitten and a little freaked out by Rick And Morty over the past few weeks, and now Zack Handlen will be covering it week-to-week to further investigate. Join us and let us know what you think of it.
Switched At Birth (ABC Family, 9 p.m.): Season three of this family drama starts tonight, as the girls start their senior year at Carlton. Carrie Raisler will be covering this for us, as usual.
Sleepy Hollow (Fox, 9 p.m.): After a long, cold month bereft of time-traveling colonial hunks and badass lady detectives, Sleepy Hollow is back tonight, for its penultimate episode before the season finale. Zack Handlen has already begun to pen his lament at the show's fickle affection: “O fair programme/Thou grac'd us with your beautye/And then Thou leav'st/Art thou secretlye named Buttrecup?”
Adventure Time (Cartoon Network, 7 p.m.): Also returning after a long winter hiatus is Adventure Time. Is it just us who gets the entire theme song in their heads as soon as you read the words “adventure time”? Oliver Sava thinks that we are a little nuts.
Regular Show (Cartoon Network, 7:30 p.m.): Also also returning after a winter hiatus is Regular Show, covered by Alasdair Wilkins. The park guys try to win a dodgeball tournament.
Almost Human (Fox, 8 p.m.): Kevin McFarland, along with Kennex and Dorian, investigate a bullet that can track and kill its targets.
How I Met Your Mother (CBS, 8 p.m.): Donna Bowman cordially invites you to “Slapsgiving 3: Slappointment In Slapmarra.”
Mom (CBS, 9:30 p.m.): In what appears to be a trend, Mom's new episode, titled “Hot Soup And Shingles,” has put Todd VanDerWerff off his lunch.
Teen Wolf (MTV, 10 p.m.): Phil Dyess-Nugent finds tonight's episode title, ”More Bad Than Good,” to be slightly ominous.
The Blacklist (NBC, 10 p.m.): Somehow, Phil Dyess-Nugent is also covering this returning show. In tonight's episode, the team searches for a mole. (We assume Phil is the mole—he's playing both shows against each other!).
Genevieve Valentine on The Fosters, in the middle of its second season: “Given that it was a blended-family show with the actual last name Foster, it was understandable there were concerns about the level of nuance with which the show would handle the many social issues its pilot suggested. But, in a pleasant surprise, the show handled everything, and it was rather good.”
Kevin McFarland looked at Lost Girl's fourth season: “Note to showrunners: It’s not a good idea to confine a show’s dynamic lead character—who happens to be your cast’s best actor—to less than five minutes of screen time over the first two episodes of a season…. The titular lost girl has been lost and forgotten.”
And Molly Eichel covered Bitten, about a female werewolf, which debuts tonight: “[Elena is] the only female werewolf because werewomen are made, not born, and women aren’t thought to be strong enough to handle the werewolf bite necessary for transformation. Yet, Elena was strong enough. But the sexual politics are muddled in Bitten, at least in the episodes sent to critics. The idea that women as a whole can’t handle the werewolf transformation is supposed to make Elena singular, but women’s inherent weakness doesn’t bode well for the representation of the rest of the gender.”
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Introducing a new feature: One-Season Wonders, Weirdos, And Wannabes, about those short-lived shows that were cut down before their time. (Or maybe, you know, just at their time.) Today, Brandon Nowalk looks at Stella, a 2005 sketch comedy show that is largely unknown, but paved the way for modern comedy.
WHAT ELSE IS ON?
America Ninja Warrior: USA vs. Japan (NBC, 8 p.m.): It looks like NBC has gotten a little desperate for programming in the weeks leading up to the 2014 Winter Olympics. So it's pitting five Americans against five Japanese citizens for an international duel, the likes of which will not be seen… for two weeks, at least!
Chozen (FX, 10:30 p.m.): This new comedy didn't impress Brandon Nowalk, but it is debuting tonight after Archer, hoping that the same audience who loves animated spies will love animated gay rappers. Can't say we blame them.
Intelligence (CBS, 10 p.m.): This show that might be worse than even Hostages continues to be dubiously about the war on terror as the team investigates a suicide bomber.
Princess Protection Program (Disney, 8:30 p.m.): Demi Lovato plays a princess who has to flee her country after a small coup. She ends up being relocated to rural Louisiana, where she rooms with Selena Gomez. High jinks… ensue?
Shaun Of The Dead (MOMAX, 9 p.m.): Simon Pegg and Nick Frost take on zombie movies in this parody. Directed by Edgar Wright.
WWE Raw (USA, 8 p.m.): Tonight's episode promises tag-team action. So, we're excited.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Shameless: In the midst of a thousand other things happening last night, Shameless returned, having sex in a Wendy's drive-thru, per usual. Joshua Alston has his review of the fourth season premiere.