TVScreener.com is a very proud member of the Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA), and today, we announce the nominees for our third annual Critics’ Choice Television Awards.
It’s a fantastic list of shows and stars, with The Big Bang Theory and American Horror Story: Asylum leading series nominees with six each, and HBO (21) and FX (19) leading the networks.
“This year’s nominations reflect the expanding definition of television, with nominated programs and performances representing new platforms as well as broadcast and cable,” BTJA President Joey Berlin says. “As evidenced by nominations for the 3rd annual Critics’ Choice Television Awards, television continues to be a rich and diverse source of high quality entertainment.”
The Critics’ Choice Television Awards ceremony will be held on June 10 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles, hosted by Parks and Recreation star Retta. Fans can watch the celeb-packed event in a live webcast at UStream.
Here, the complete list of nominees:
BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES
Don Cheadle (House of Lies) – Showtime
Louis C.K. (Louie) – FX
Jake Johnson (New Girl) – FOX
Jim Parsons (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Adam Scott (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
Jeremy Sisto (Suburgatory) – ABC
BEST ACTRESS IN A COMEDY SERIES
Laura Dern (Enlightened) – HBO
Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) – FOX
Lena Dunham (Girls) – HBO
Sutton Foster (Bunheads) – ABC Family
Julia Louis-Dreyfus (Veep) – HBO
Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A COMEDY SERIES
Max Greenfield (New Girl) – FOX
Simon Helberg (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Alex Karpovsky (Girls) – HBO
Adam Pally (Happy Endings) – ABC
Chris Pratt (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
Danny Pudi (Community) – NBC
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A COMEDY
Carly Chaikin (Suburgatory) – ABC
Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Sarah Hyland (Modern Family) – ABC
Melissa Rauch (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Eden Sher (The Middle) – ABC
Casey Wilson (Happy Endings) – ABC
BEST GUEST PERFORMER IN A COMEDY SERIES
Melissa Leo (Louie) – FX
David Lynch (Louie) – FX
Bob Newhart (The Big Bang Theory) – CBS
Patton Oswalt (Parks and Recreation) – NBC
Molly Shannon (Enlightened) – HBO
Patrick Wilson (Girls) – HBO
BEST DRAMA SERIES
The Americans – FX
Breaking Bad – AMC
Downton Abbey – PBS
Game of Thrones – HBO
The Good Wife – CBS
Homeland – Showtime
BEST ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES
Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) – AMC
Damian Lewis (Homeland) – Showtime
Andrew Lincoln (The Walking Dead) – AMC
Timothy Olyphant (Justified) – FX
Matthew Rhys (The Americans) – FX
Kevin Spacey (House of Cards) – Netflix
BEST ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES
Claire Danes (Homeland) – Showtime
Vera Farmiga (Bates Motel) – A&E
Julianna Margulies (The Good Wife) – CBS
Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) – BBC America
Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men) – AMC
Keri Russell (The Americans) – FX
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A DRAMA SERIES
Jonathan Banks (Breaking Bad) – AMC
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Michael Cudlitz (Southland) – TNT
Noah Emmerich (The Americans) – FX
Walton Goggins (Justified) – FX
Corey Stoll (House of Cards) – Netflix
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A DRAMA SERIES
Jennifer Carpenter (Dexter) – Showtime
Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) – AMC
Regina King (Southland) – TNT
Monica Potter (Parenthood) – NBC
Abigail Spencer (Rectify) – Sundance
BEST GUEST PERFORMER IN A DRAMA SERIES
Jim Beaver (Justified) – FX
Jane Fonda (The Newsroom) – HBO
Martha Plimpton (The Good Wife) – CBS
Carrie Preston (The Good Wife) – CBS
Diana Rigg (Game of Thrones) – HBO
Jimmy Smits (Sons of Anarchy) – FX
BEST MOVIE OR MINI-SERIES
American Horror Story: Asylum – FX
Behind the Candelabra – HBO
The Crimson Petal and the White – Encore
The Hour – BBC America
Political Animals – USA
Top of the Lake – Sundance
BEST ACTOR IN A MOVIE OR MINI-SERIES
Benedict Cumberbatch (Parade’s End) – HBO
Matt Damon (Behind the Candelabra) – HBO
Michael Douglas (Behind the Candelabra) – HBO
Toby Jones (The Girl) – HBO
Al Pacino (Phil Spector) – HBO
Dominic West (The Hour) – BBC America
BEST ACTRESS IN A MOVIE OR MINI-SERIES
Angela Bassett (Betty & Coretta) – Lifetime
Romola Garai (The Hour) – BBC America
Rebecca Hall (Parade’s End) – HBO
Jessica Lange (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Elisabeth Moss (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
Sigourney Weaver (Political Animals) – USA
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A MOVIE OR MINI-SERIES
James Cromwell (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Peter Mullan (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
Zachary Quinto (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Sebastian Stan (Political Animals) – USA
David Wenham (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
Thomas M. Wright (Top of the Lake) – Sundance
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A MOVIE OR MINI-SERIES
Ellen Burstyn (Political Animals) – USA
Sienna Miller (The Girl) – HBO
Sarah Paulson (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Lily Rabe (American Horror Story: Asylum) – FX
Imelda Staunton (The Girl) – HBO
Alfre Woodard (Steel Magnolias) – Lifetime
BEST REALITY SERIES – COMPETITION
Chopped – Food Network
Face Off – Syfy
Shark Tank – ABC
So You Think You Can Dance – FOX
Survivor – CBS
The Voice – NBC
BEST REALITY HOST
Tom Bergeron (Dancing With the Stars) – ABC
Cat Deeley (So You Think You Can Dance) – FOX
Gordon Ramsay (Hell’s Kitchen/Masterchef) – FOX
RuPaul (RuPaul’s Drag Race) – Logo
Ryan Seacrest (American Idol) – FOX
Kurt Warner (The Moment) – USA
BEST TALK SHOW
Conan – TBS
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart – Comedy Central
The Ellen DeGeneres Show – Warner Brothers Television Distribution
Jimmy Kimmel Live! – ABC
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon – NBC
Marie – Hallmark Channel
BTJA will also announce nominees for the Most Exciting New Series award on June 3.
The Broadcast Television Journalists Association (BTJA) is a partner organization to the Broadcast Film Critics Association. BTJA includes TV, radio and Internet journalists who cover television on a regular basis. For more information, visit: CriticsChoice.com.
After last season’s finale — the Gus head and the flower pot reveal — how could the Breaking Bad season five opener (Sunday, AMC, 10PM ET) possibly live up to the expectations fans have for the final season of one of the best (the best, I’d argue) TV dramas of all time?
Yet, the first two episodes rate a five out of five stars, two thumbs up, 10 on a scale of one to 10 … by whatever rating system you use, the season premiere is flawless, picking up where season four left off and offering a hint into what I think is going to be Walter White’s downfall.
In short: his ego. Walt (Bryan Cranston) was feeling super badass after pulling off his Gus plot, but he’s not satisfied with being able to tell wife Skyler (Anna Gunn) that he won. Nor is he going to be satisfied with the fact that he did win. Without any major spoilers, there’s a moment in the season five premiere — the episode’s called “Live Free or Die” — where Walt Jr. (RJ Mitte) tells his dad that Hank (Dean Norris) is going to be hailed as a hero for being the only person to have been onto Gus’ real activities.
Walt’s reaction is priceless, and so telling. He bristles ever so slightly at the thought of Hank as a hero, or more specifically at the fact that Walt Jr. sees his uncle as one, and it’s not because Walt knows Hank’s ongoing investigation of Gus threatens to expose Walt’s own misdeeds.
It’s because Walt wants his son to know what a tough guy he is (or thinks he is). And more than wanting his son to know how tough he is, the things he’s gotten away with and the people who fear him, Walt wants Hank to know.
Hank, who’s been vulnerable and insecure himself since his shooting, spent years poking fun at Walt and his meek high school chemistry teacher persona. And now that Walt’s Mr. Chips-to-Scarface transformation — as Cranston and BB creator Vince Gilligan frequently refer to Walt’s journey — is near completion, Walt wants Hank to know he’s no longer the schlubby teacher.
Despite what it would mean if Hank (DEA officer Hank) found out, Walt is dying for him to know what he’s done, what he’s doing and who he’s doing it to/for/with/against.
And that, I’m guessing, is going to ultimately be the specific cause of Walt’s downfall (and no spoiler there, because Cranston and Gilligan have often said Walt is not going to get away with his bad works).
Speaking of … if you still had any smidgen of sympathy left for Walt after his plot with the ricin and kiddie Brock, a scene in the season premiere between an ever more manipulative Walt and a still too trusting Jesse (Aaron Paul) should take care of that.
There are a couple of little surprises in the first two episodes of the new season (“Live Free or Die” and “Madrigal” are the eps AMC provided for review), and a couple of much-welcome moments of levity (two words: truck and magnet), but the most chilling scene is the one in which Walt utters the words “I forgive you.”
Because he doesn’t, and the person he says it to is very aware of what that could mean.
And if that isn’t enough to get you jazzed for the new season, check out these Breaking Bad goodies:
— The Hollywood Reporter‘s cover story on BB, with tidbits like the network that rudely rejected the show and the actors AMC initially wanted to cast as Walter White (John Cusack?!?!).
— Though he’s gone (and how), Gus Fring (Emmy-deserving Giancarlo Esposito) will certainly not be forgotten, and he continues to play a big role in BB events. In honor of his exit, AMC has a fun little “Go Fring Yourself” game, in which you put your head on Gus’ body and, well, a few “ding ding dings” later, you’re, ahem, facing off with Tio (RIP).
— The New York Daily News has an interview with the underrated Dean Norris, who plays Walt’s brother-in-law Hank. Norris, a Harvard grad, says playing the moral character isn’t as fun as playing the bad guy, and is often overlooked come Emmy time, but he’s giving a standout performance in a cast where there isn’t a bad performance.
— Dish subscribers who are freaking out about being AMC-less for Sunday night’s premiere can sign up to watch the episode live at AMCTV.com.
— You will love Aaron Paul even more than you already do after reading GQ‘s interview with him.
— Bryan Cranston picks his 13 favorite Breaking Bad moments at The Daily Beast.com.
— The 27 best Breaking Bad memes (numbers 16 and 19 crack me up).
— 25 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Breaking Bad from Buzzfeed.com.
— Aaron Paul in a Corn Pops commercial.
— A Breaking Bad A to Z feature I wrote for AOL before season 4 (so yes, it’s in serious need of an update, but still fun).
(ALL TIMES ET)
9PM, SUN | SHOWTIME – 6TH SEASON PREMIERE
Dexter – The new season gets off to a great start, as Dexter worries about Harrison’s spiritual future while looking for a good preschool for his son, and also goes to his high school reunion, where he’s got a little Dexter-style karma to deliver. He also unexpectedly finds himself as one of the most popular guys among his old classmates, which leads to several delightfully funny moments.
Not so funny: the season’s new baddies, played by Edward James Olmos and Colin Hanks. They are up to some gruesome adventures, and as great as EJO is as a heroic space commander, he’s even better as a warped, homicidal religion professor.
CHECK LISTINGS FOR TIME AND CHANNEL, SAT | PBS – 37TH SEASON PREMIERE
Austin City Limits – Mumford & Sons and Flogging Molly kick off the new season which will also include episodes with Raphael Saadiq, Widespread Panic, The Decemberists and Gillian Welch.
9PM, SAT | COMEDY CENTRAL
Weird Al Yankovic Live!: The Apocalypse Tour – Multiple costume changes and a whole string of familiar hits are the highlights of any Weird Al concert. This one, taped in July, includes classics like “Fat,” “Amish Paradise” and “White & Nerdy,” as well as his latest parody, the Lady Gaga-skewering “Perform This Way.”
9PM, SAT | BBC AMERICA – 6TH SEASON FINALE
Doctor Who – “The Wedding of River Song” is the name of the season ender and it occurs on the day The Doctor is supposed to die.
11:30PM, SAT | NBC
Saturday Night Live – The fabulous Gilmore Girls/Bridesmaids/Mike & Molly star Melissa McCarthy makes her first appearance as SNL host, with musical guest Lady Antebellum.
CHECK LOCAL LISTINGS FOR TIME, SUN | PBS
Prohibition – Ken Burns‘ latest documentary, this three-part history of Prohibition kicks off with “A Nation of Drunkards,” about the initial movement towards temperance.
8PM, SUN | FOX
The Simpsons – Superintendent Chalmers’ tales of Teddy Roosevelt and the Rough Riders get Bart all fired up, and when Chalmers gets axed from his job, Bart employs Teddy tactics to get Chalmers’ job back.
9PM, SUN | CBS
The Good Wife – Alicia tries a case against a tough British attorney, played by guest star Eddie Izzard.
9PM, SUN | FOOD NETWORK – SERIES PREMIERE
Halloween Wars – The four-part series features five teams, comprised of candy makers, cake designers and pumpkin carvers, who create tricked out Halloween displays for a shot at winning a $50,000 grand prize.
9 and 10PM, SUN | TV GUIDE NETWORK
100 Moments That Changed TV – Parts one and two of this five-part miniseries counts down TV events like the “Who shot J.R.?” cliffhanger, the Menendez brothers’ trial, the O.J. Simpson car chase and the classic Apple 1984 commercial.
10PM, SUN | HISTORY – SERIES PREMIERE
Around the World in 80 Ways – Survivor alum Boston Rob Mariano and Dennis Anderson attempt to travel around the globe, using any method of transportation they can. In the premiere, that means bus, horse, zipline, motorcycle and water taxi to get to Peru.
10PM, SUN | AMC
Breaking Bad – “End Times” is the penultimate episode of season four, and if you think Walt and Jesse have been painted into a corner so far, you ain’t seen nothing yet.
10PM, SUN | SHOWTIME – SERIES PREMIERE
Homeland – Claire Danes stars in this terrific new thriller from 24 showrunner Howard Gordon. Danes is CIA operative Carrie Anderson, who’s suspicious when long-missing Marine and POW Nicholas Brody (Damien Lewis) turns up after eight years. He’s got big secrets for sure, but is one of them what Anderson thinks it is, that he’s been flipped by Al Qaeda and is part of some planned terrorist plot against the United States? And, Carrie has a secret of her own … she’s taking medication for some, uh, emotional issues.
10PM, SUN | HBO – 3RD SEASON PREMIERE
Hung – Ray and Tanya look for financing for their business, while Lenore finds a new, ahem, resource, that may make her their biggest competition.
10PM, SUN | BRAVO
Real Housewives of New Jersey – The gang’s still in Punta Cana, and they’re all still getting on each other’s nerves. Meanwhile, back in New Jersey, the bratty Ashley considers getting a tattoo.
11PM, SUN | BRAVO
Watch What Happens: Live – Given all the Real Housewives of New Jersey drama that has unfolded this week, it should make for an interesting evening in the clubhouse when Caroline Manzo stops by to chat with host Andy Cohen.
Worth flipping to during commercials:
– Gail counsels a 30-year-old woman whose shopping addictions have left her homeless more than once on Princess (Sat., 10PM, CNBC);
– On The Amazing Race (Sun., 8PM, CBS), the teams face a double elimination in Indonesia;
– The Gomez family in Utah get an Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (Sun., 8PM, ABC);
– Making Monsters (Sun., 8PM, Travel) is the new reality series that follows animatronic monster makers Ed and Marsha Edmunds;
– The third season premiere of Tough Love (Sun., 8PM, VH1) finds matchmaker Steve Ward moving the action to Miami as he tries to help a new crop of women meet potential mates;
– A hurricane hits Stoolbend on The Cleveland Show (Sun., 8:30PM, Fox);
– Jimmy tries to make a deal with Arnold Rothstein on Boardwalk Empire (Sun., 9PM, HBO);
– On Bridezillas (Sun., 9PM, WE), one bride’s strict, weird wedding rules includes no chewing gum for anyone;
– Lynette and Tom’s kids take advantage of their parents’ guilt about their separation on Desperate Housewives (Sun., 9PM, ABC);
– Brian ingests some powerful pharmaceuticals on Family Guy (Sun., 9PM, HBO);
– The creepy cliff roads, a truck on the fritz and the language barrier slow the truckers down on IRT: Deadliest Roads (Sun., 9PM, History);
– The CSIs investigate the murder of a gigolo on CSI: Miami (Sun., 10PM, CBS);
– On Dirty Soap (Sun., 10PM, E!), Nadia‘s mom reveals she’s not too happy about the Nadia/Brandon pairing.
(ALL TIMES ET)
10PM, SUN | AMC
Breaking Bad – Every week of its fourth season, Breaking Bad has been the best thing on TV, and this episode, “Crawl Space,” is no exception. There are several moments so incredible that they’ll have you replaying them and dissecting them until next week’s episode. Let’s just say Hank and Walt continue their game of cat and mouse, with Hank getting frighteningly close to figuring out Gus’ whole operation. Gus, meanwhile, enjoys a moment he’s worked years for, and Skyler’s situation with Ted and the IRS debt trips up Walt’s big plans. You know how, at this year’s Emmys, the Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series category was dominated by the Modern Family cast? That should be the case for the supporting actor drama category at next year’s show … how can you possibly choose between Aaron Paul, Giancarlo Esposito, Dean Norris and Jonathan Banks, who have all given mind-blowing performances this season?
10PM, SAT | BBC AMERICA
The Nerdist – Chris Hardwick, who’s going to host that cool Walking Dead live talk show this fall, discusses all things geeky cool in this special, on which Craig Ferguson and The Doctor, Matt Smith, pop in for guest spots.
11:30PM, SAT | NBC – 37TH SEASON PREMIERE
Saturday Night Live – Alec Baldwin becomes the all-time SNL host champ with this, his 16th hosting gig. Radiohead is the musical guest, and, if the SNL gods are smiling up on us, there will be a Stefon (Bill Hader) appearance.
8PM, SUN | CBS – 19TH SEASON PREMIERE
The Amazing Race – Survivor alums, and still-together reality couple, Ethan Zohn and Jenna Morasca are among the 11 teams competing.
8PM, SUN | FOX – 23RD SEASON PREMIERE
The Simpsons – What happened to “Nedna,” as in Flanders and Mrs. Krabappel? We find out. Meanwhile, Homer’s threatened by terrorists, and a stranger with a mysterious past – voiced by, appropriately enough, Kiefer Sutherland – steps up to help him.
9PM, SUN | HBO – 2ND SEASON PREMIERE
Boardwalk Empire – Nucky’s (Steve Buscemi) looking to make a huge real estate deal in Atlantic City, but has to turn his attention to helping Chalky. Meanwhile, Jimmy gets career advice from the Commodore and Al Capone wants to expand his business throughout the Chicago area.
9PM, SUN | ABC – 8TH SEASON PREMIERE
Desperate Housewives – The show’s final season begins with the Wisteria Lane gang trying to get rid of the body of Gaby’s evil stepdad, who Carlos wiped out last season.
9PM, SUN | FOX – 11TH SEASON PREMIERE
Family Guy – The Griffins win the lottery. Hilarity ensues.
9PM, SUN | CBS – 3RD SEASON PREMIERE
The Good Wife – Alicia (Emmy winner Julianna Margulies) defends a Muslim student who’s accused of killing a Jewish classmate.
10PM, SUN | CBS – 10TH SEASON PREMIERE
CSI: Miami – Picking up where we left off, Horatio’s bleeding after being shot and Natalia’s trying to escape from the trunk of a car submerged in water.
10PM, SUN | E! – SERIES PREMIERE
Dirty Soap – The reality series follows the soapy real lives of a group of daytime soap stars who are friends, including General Hospital‘s Kirsten Storm and her estranged BFF, and former Days of Our Lives co-star Farah Fath, who dates her current One Life to Live co-star John-Paul Lavoisier. Also starring: GH‘s Kelly Monaco, and Days of Our Lives‘ Galen Gering and Nadia Bjorlin.
10PM, SUN | HISTORY – 2ND SEASON PREMIERE
IRT: Deadliest Roads – The action moves to South America and the treacherous roads of the Andes, and the drivers this season include Lisa Kelly, Rick Yemm, Hugh Rowland and Dave Redmon.
10PM, SUN | ABC – SERIES PREMIERE
Pan Am – It’s cool in theory, this retro drama that revolves around Pan Am pilots and stewardesses in the ’60s, but without real focus and a truly charismatic cast, the premiere never really takes off. Pun so intended.
11PM, SUN | BRAVO – 5TH SEASON PREMIERE
Watch What Happens: Live – Will host Andy Cohen address the many Real Housewives controversies that have unfolded since he was last on the air?
Worth flipping to during commercials:
– Doctor Who (Sat., 9PM, BBCA) deals with a silver rat in a department store;
– On the 44th (!) season premiere of 60 Minutes (Sun., 7PM, CBS), South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker get the profile treatment;
– Michelle Obama guests on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition (Sun., 8PM, ABC);
– Peter Griffin comes to town on the third season premiere of The Cleveland Show (Sun., 8:30PM, Fox);
– It’s a few days before Frankie’s wedding, and she’s missing just one thing on Bridezillas (Sun., 9PM, WE) … a gown;
– On Drop Dead Diva (Sun., 9PM, Lifetime), Owen asks Jane to go on a year-long New Zealand sailing trip;
– A winner is crowned in the season two finale of The Great Food Truck Race (Sun., 9PM, Food Network);
– Alex may take the lead when Hugh and Rick run into an obstacle on Ice Road Truckers (Sun., 9PM, History);
– Cee Lo Green and Gabourey Sidibe are guest voices on the seventh season premiere of American Dad (Sun., 9:30PM, Fox).
(ALL TIMES ET)
TVScreener’s on a little break this week, so here’s a list of the must-not-miss programming you should, uh, not miss, through next Monday:
10PM, TUES | FX – 4TH SEASON PREMIERE
Sons of Anarchy – The 90-minute season premiere picks up with the SAMCRO dudes getting out of jail and returning to Charming, where a new sheriff (Prison Break‘s Rockmond Dunbar) is considerably less friendly than the old regime, Opie and Lyla are getting hitched, a new federal agent (Deadwood‘s Ray McKinnon) is hot on the club’s trail and Jax returns home to his new son and Tara, with a radical change in his priorities. I’ve seen the first three episodes of season four, and they set up what promises to be a great (another great) season, with a lot of the tensions that have been building throughout the series inevitably bubbling up to the forefront. Still bummed SoA creator Kurt Sutter quit Twitter though …
10PM, WEDS | FX – SERIES FINALE
Rescue Me – Denis Leary‘s NYPD fireman dramedy that was sparked by 9/11 comes to an end just in time for the day’s 10th anniversary, and, though the show has been hit and miss throughout its run (I maintain that the season five finale, in which Tommy was shot by his crazy Uncle Teddy, would have been the perfect series finale), but this fairly satisfying series ender wraps with a tragedy, some over-the-top (but still pretty funny) shenanigans and a glimpse at the guys’ futures.
9PM, THURS | USA – 5TH SEASON SUMMER FINALE
Burn Notice – Michael’s old frienemy Larry (guest star Tim Matheson) returns, which always means trouble. And since Michael is right in the middle of trying to prove he didn’t kill Max, Larry’s reappearance is particularly ill-timed.
10PM, THURS | FX – 1ST SEASON FINALE
Wilfred – There are some truly delightful and ornery moments in tonight’s finale (many of them tied to Wilfred’s love of bubbles), but the ending? Will blow your mind.
10:30PM, THURS | FX – 2ND SEASON FINALE
Louie – Louie … New Jersey … bad.
10PM, FRI | STARZ – SEASON FINALE
Torchwood: Miracle Day – This is either the first season finale or the fourth, depending on whether you see this as a whole new series or just a continuation of the original. Either way, the Torchwoodies make a final effort against the Three Families, but it may take a huge sacrifice for them to have any hope of defeating the Fams.
9PM, SUN | HBO – 4TH SEASON FINALE
True Blood – It’s called “And When I Die.” Hints: Debbie has it out with Tara and Sookie, Alcide gets romantic and Terry has a surprise visitor.
10PM, SUN | AMC
Breaking Bad – Gus takes on his rivals, while Jesse asks Walt for help.
10PM, SUN | HBO – 8TH SEASON FINALE
Curb Your Enthusiasm – This has officially been my all-time favorite season of Curb, as Larry, sans the wet blanket that was Cheryl, fully embraced his inner “social assassin. But tonight, he tangles with the one guy who could have us all rooting against Larry: Michael J. Fox.
10:30PM, SUN | HBO – SERIES FINALE
Entourage – If not for Jeremy Piven as Ari, this season would have been unwatchable. But since we’ve come this far, may as well see how it all ends, as Vince makes a surprising move after this first date with Sophia, Ari and Mrs. Ari go for one more therapy session and the guys try to talk the pregnant Sloan into reuniting with E, even as her dad threatens to kill him.
MON | CHECK LOCAL LISTINGS FOR TIME AND CHANNEL – SERIES PREMIERE
Anderson – Anderson Cooper begins his stint as a daytime talk show host. Can’t wait; as well as being a serious newsie, he loves pop culture and guilty pleasure TV, so it should prove to be a fun mix.
10PM, MON | SHOWTIME
Weeds – Nancy, Andy and Doug head to the Hamptons for the weekend, while Shane goes on a drug bust with Det. Ouellette.
Worth flipping to during commercials:
– Todd‘s son from a previous marriage visits and wreaks havoc in the house on Downsized (9PM, WE);
– Dough, breakfast food and fancy fish are among the mystery basket ingredients on this installment of Chopped: Champions (10PM, Food Network);
– The 4th season premiere of The Rachel Zoe Project (10PM, Bravo) finds the spaz stylist preparing for the imminent arrival of baby Skyler;
– Amber spends a night in jail and Catelynn and Tyler have a fight on Teen Mom (10PM, MTV);
– On Awkward (11PM, MTV), Jenna’s wild party ends with a kiss, but she can’t remember the details of it (the party or the kiss).
– Mike and Lonnie choose a partner in the season finale of Famous Food (8PM, VH1);
– Boorman offers Patty classified info on Howard Erickson (for a price, of course) on Damages (10PM, DirecTV);
– Chef Robert travels to Pennsylvania to help the owner of a place that’s part eatery, part vineyard and part zoo on Restaurant: Impossible (10PM, Food Network);
– Back-to-back new eps of Storage Wars (10 and 10:30PM, A&E);
– On Top Chef: Just Desserts (10PM, Bravo), the chefs have to whip up desserts for a party thrown by Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Lisa Vanderpump.
– The designers have to create a signature fabric, and they also have to work in teams again on Project Runway (9PM, Lifetime);
– Futurama (10PM, Comedy Central) wraps its sixth season;
– Ronnie and Sammi try to make up (again), but will probably end up in a psycho drama instead (again) on Jersey Shore (10PM, MTV);
– Trevor creates a problem when he shows up on Mike’s doorstep in the first season finale of Suits (10PM, USA).
– Taped in Beverly Hills in December, Mel Brooks and Dick Cavett: Together Again (9PM, HBO) finds the two showbiz legends and fantastic storytellers swapping anecdotes in front of a live audience, which includes fellow legend Carl Reiner.
– Cops (8PM, Fox): Bad boys, bad boys, back for their 24th season premiere;
– The Doctor and Rory have to rescue Amy, who’s been quarantined inside an alien hospital on Doctor Who (9PM, BBCA).
– It’ll be hard to top (go lower than?) the spectacle that was last week’s attempt to get Amy Fisher to meet up with Mary Jo Buttafuoco, but Dr. Drew and his team make the effort during updates on the other rehabbers during the fifth season finale of Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew (10PM, VH1);
– Teresa makes a gaudy spectacle of herself and her family with a kiddie birthday party on Real Housewives of New Jersey (10PM, Bravo).
– The 42nd season premiere of Monday Night Football (7PM, ESPN) pits the Patriots against the Dolphins;
– There are wieners and winners in the second season finale of Bachelor Pad (8PM, ABC);
– Andy Cohen co-hosts the 2011 Miss Universe Pageant (9PM, NBC);
– On the seventh season summer finale of The Closer (9PM, TNT), the judge makes a crucial ruling in Brenda’s case;
– Kate Plus 8 (9PM, TLC) … series finale, finale-ally;
– Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (9PM, Bravo) … yep, it’s creepy, and that only continues as Taylor delves into her marital woes;
– On The A-List (10PM, Logo), Austin tries to make up with Derek, and Reichen introduces his new cologne;
– The season two premiere of Extreme Couponing (10PM, TLC) features a woman who’s using coupons in the hopes of saving enough cash to move out of her dangerous neighborhood;
– On the second season summer finale of Rizzoli & Isles (10PM, TNT), a young guy is killed in a jail bathroom, just as he was about to be sprung from the hoosegow;
– Adam searches for his MIA uncle on The Big C (10:30PM, Showtime).
And the late-night line-up:
– Conan (11PM, TBS): Charlie Day and Foo Fighters (Thursday);
– The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Dr. Sanjay Gupta (Wednesday);
– The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): Tom Brokaw (Thursday);
– The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Michael J. Fox (Thursday);
– The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Nick Swardson (Tuesday); Wull Arnett (Thursday); Glen Campbell and Christina Applegate (Monday);
– Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Elijah Wood (Wednesday); Nathan Fillion (Monday);
– Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Denis Leary (Tuesday); Tom Selleck (Thursday); Lauren Graham (Friday); Sarah Michelle Gellar (Monday);
– The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Lisa Kudrow (Tuesday).
Charlie Sheen, Russell Brand and Louis C.K. are getting most of the attention, but I’m most excited that one of the best new shows of last TV season — Wilfred — returns for its second season on FX tonight (10PM ET). Season one of the series ended with a cliffhanger — had Ryan (Elijah Wood) […]