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Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV


American Idol
Adam Lambert returns to perform, as the first of the 13 finalists gets the boot in the results show. A few thoughts on last night’s performance episode: It’s great to see Randy finally stepping up and giving real critiques; while Steven Tyler was entertaining in the audition rounds, so far, he’s proven himself to be almost as useless as an incoherent Paula Abdul when it comes to constructive comments in the performance shows; and, though Jennifer Lopez has been my favorite of the judges this season, it was off-putting that she didn’t know who Ryan Adams is. Overall, I’m finding the season to be more pleasant than seasons past, but I’m also less compelled by any one contestant. They’re still, on the whole, picking bad songs, the females aren’t distinguishing themselves at all (except for the fact that they’re apparently raiding the old Dynasty wardrobe – those dated dresses!) and while lots of people seem to be impressed with Cowboy Scotty, am I the only one who thinks he’s just been doing an okay impersonation of Garth Brooks, in both his behavior and his performances?

The Big Bang Theory
– All of a sudden, Leonard has too many women in his life: Priya, and Penny, who Priya wants out of his life.

– Booth calls on his military training to help him track Jacob Broadsky, the guy who killed the Grave Digger and has now moved on to new targets. Elsewhere, ZZ Top-er Billy F. Gibbons returns as Angela’s daddy, who thinks it should be up to him to name her baby.

– The CSIs investigate the murder of a former cop, who was convicted of killing his wife and was killed while serving his prison sentence. He also left behind a list of people he suspected in his wife’s murder, leading the team to reconsider his conviction in the process.

10PM | FX
– Malory orders Lana to help actress Rona Thorne prepare to play a spy in her new movie, and takes the opportunity to pen a little role for herself in the thriller.

Ice Brigade
– On the heels of last week’s working ice pool table, tonight the team builds an icy DJ booth, with working ice turntable, speakers and headphones.

10PM | MTV
Jersey Shore
The Situation, whose role on the show this season has been greatly diminished, tries to stir up trouble by poking Ronnie to find out who Sammi‘s been texting. Meanwhile, Vinny and Pauly road trip to Staten Island.

10PM | NGC
Ultimate Factories
– This week’s episode goes inside the Jack Daniel’s factory in Tennessee, while next week’s installment revolves around a visit to a Coca-Cola factory in Baton Rouge. Clever scheduling.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– CNBC has a new installment of How I Made My Millions (9PM);
– On Man vs. Wild (9PM, Discovery), snakes, leeches and a torrential downpour greet Bear in Borneo;
My Big Redneck Intervention (9PM, CMT) finds a country girl who got used to life in the big city returning home;
– Kate is hired by a singer who wants to convince his bandmates to allow their song to be used in a commercial on Fairly Legal (10PM, USA);
– A doctor is found murdered on a golf course on The Mentalist (10PM, CBS);
– Twins from his past visit Chris on Eagleheart (11:59PM, Adult Swim).

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Seth Rogen;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Trey Parker and Matt Stone;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): Jeff Greenfield;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Adam Sandler and Chris Colfer (REPEAT);
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Aubrey Plaza and Ashton Kutcher (REPEAT);
Lopez Tonight (Midnight, TBS): Pee-wee Herman and the cast of Sister Wives;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Henry Winkler and Cameron Diaz (REPEAT);
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Snooki and Martin Bashir (REPEAT);
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Kevin McKidd and Wanda Sykes;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Brooklyn Decker (REPEAT).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV


10PM | FX
– It’s easily one of the series’ best episodes so far, which is saying a lot. Raylan’s papa gets arrested again, Raylan’s services are requested for a state task force that’s investigating Harlan County crime and Boyd …. ah, Boyd. He gets mixed up in a payroll robbery scheme at the mine, and the consequences for some are tragic. The consequences for Boyd portrayer Walton Goggins, meanwhile, should be an Emmy.

American Idol
– The top 13 perform songs from their favorite artists in the first night of finalists competition.

Survivor: Redemption Island
– It’s Russell vs. Matt on Redemption Island.

9:30PM | ABC
Mr. Sunshine
– When Ben (Matthew Perry) finds out Roman has no place to crash, the two become roomies.

10PM | CBS
Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior
– As the team tries to track down a serial sniper, the sharp shooter sets his sights on Mick.

Face Off
– The final five have to disguise themselves, and fool their families, to win tonight’s challenge.

Family Ties
– The Hub airs the two-part series finale of the classic Michael J. Fox sitcom, in which Alex P. Keaton lands his dream job in New York City.

Nothing Personal
Steve Schirripa, a.k.a. The Sopranos‘ Bobby Baccalieri, hosts this compelling new series that profiles paid assassins and famous hit man killings.

The Real World: Las Vegas
– Yep, season 25! The second cast to hit Vegas will shack up at the Hard Rock, and they promise to be as wild, crazy and skanky as the first set of LV RWers.

Top Chef: All Stars
– The chefs head to the Bahamas, but paradise turns ugly when they have to go head-to-head against the winners of their previous Top Chef seasons, and then whip up vittles for Bahamian royalty with only the barest of equipment.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– The girls model couture dresses on America’s Next Top Model (8PM, The CW);
Bobby competes to bake the best Boston cream pie on Throwdown With Bobby Flay (8:30PM, Food Network);
– The teams battle for their wedding flowers on tonight’s Shedding for the Wedding (9PM, The CW);
– The infamous “Bling Ring,” the group of teens who burglarized celeb homes in Los Angeles, is profiled on American Greed (10PM, CNBC);
– A woman is caught stealing from her neighbor on Hoarding: Buried Alive (10PM, TLC);
– Joy depends on a homeless dude (guest star Jon Lovitz) to get her green card on Hot in Cleveland (10PM, TV Land).

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Pee-wee Herman;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Aaron Eckhart;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): David Brooks;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Snooki and Judah Friedlander (REPEAT);
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Michael Douglas (REPEAT);
Lopez Tonight (Midnight, TBS): Jerry O’Connell and Curtis Stone;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Jamie Foxx (REPEAT);
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Adam Sandler and Aziz Ansari (REPEAT);
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Trace Adkins;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Diplo and Laurie Ann Gibson.

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV


– NBC must, or at least should, regret cutting Southland loose, since it’s one of the rare dramas that has only gotten better. And tonight’s season finale keeps the good stuff flowing, as Ben (Benjamin McKenzie) wraps his rookie run while his partner, John (Michael Cudlitz), grows ever more dependent on painkillers. Elsewhere, Sammy (Shawn Hatosy) confronts Nate’s killer.

Gwyneth Paltrow returns as Holly Holliday, the fill-in sex ed teacher.

Dirty Jobs
– It’s a family affair as Mike’s mom and dad pop in while he looks back at all the family businesses he’s visited.

Raising Hope
– Jimmy’s cousin Mike returns with a wife (guest star Mary Lynn Rajskub) and three “brother-husbands,” while Mike’s dad (guest star J.K. Simmons), Burt’s brother, looks to Burt for help in bonding with his son. Bonus awesome guest star: Best Week Ever host Paul F. Tompkins as one of the brother-husbands.

– Diana tells Lisa an attack against Anna is the only way to save the humans from being wiped out.

9:30PM | FOX
Traffic Light
– Adam may come to regret (erroneously) getting credit for rescuing his elderly neighbors’ puppy when Mrs. Neighbor goes overboard with her gratitude.

10PM | FX
Lights Out
– Ed’s (Eamonn Walker) training plan for Lights has the whole family in an uproar, from Theresa and the girls, who don’t like the late hours, to Johnny, who’s upset that Ed won’t let Lights promote the Reynolds bout.

10PM | MTV
Teen Mom
Kailyn has no choice but to move in with her mother, and Jenelle plans to move to New Jersey with Kieffer. On the good news front, Leah and Corey are happy to get baby Ali‘s diagnosis.

White Collar
– Neal finally gets more info about Kate’s death.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
Sully coaches some wannabe pitchmen in the second season finale of Pitchmen (7PM, Discovery);
The Biggest Loser (8PM, NBC) includes a mud pit challenge;
– New Jump City Seattle on G4 (8PM);
– It’s the classic Happy Days (8:30, The HUB) episode in which Richie and Lori Beth get married (via telephone!);
Kenny Rogers: The First 50 Years takes a look back at the career of The Gambler (8:30PM, GAC);
– On the second season finale of Cupcake Wars (9PM, Food Network), the contestants create treats for the 50th anniversary of the Ice House Comedy Club in Pasadena;
– On Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best? (9PM, WE), Joan is supposed to babysit Cooper and her friends for a weekend, but when she gets a job, she passes the babysitting baton;
– A female boxer gets a makeover on What Not to Wear (9PM, TLC);
– Several suspects keep the detectives busy when a college co-ed is murdered on Detroit 1-8-7 (10PM, ABC);
– The volunteers hunt rabbits and then eat rabbit pie on Kill It, Cook It, Eat It (10PM, Current);
– Still hoping the Real Housewives of Miami (10PM, Bravo) gets more interesting, lest it end up being as big a dud as RH of DC.

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Gary Oldman and Drive-By Truckers;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Brian Christian;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): Dan Sinker;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Justin Bieber (REPEAT);
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Jennifer Lopez, Ryan Seacrest, Randy Jackson and Steven Tyler (REPEAT);
Lopez Tonight (Midnight, TBS): Aaron Eckhart;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Alex Trebek (REPEAT);
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Jennifer Aniston and Piers Morgan (REPEAT);
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Topher Grace;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Jon Foster (REPEAT).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV


– It’s graduation day for the cast and crew of Greek, as the college dramedy wraps its four-season run tonight. The good news is that we can expect resolution on the show’s ongoing storylines: the Kappa Taus try to stop their house from being demolished, Casey and Cappie realize what their future holds and Cappie and Evan decide whether or not their friendship is meant to last.

The Bachelor: The Women Tell All
– A.k.a., the crazies return and rip into Brad.

The Event
– It’s back with a new two-hour episode, and Virginia Madsen joins the cast as an Alaskan senator who’s threatening to go on Hardball and let Chris Matthews and his viewers know about the secret detention facility.

– Dream sequence alert! But don’t groan; this one’s musical, with choreography.

Pretty Little Liars
– The girls have been feeling so guilty about their own issues that they didn’t realize just how many other townsfolk have major secrets of their own. Until tonight.

The Chicago Code
– Alderman Gibbons’ help is solicited when a teen boy is murdered while spreading his church’s message in Chinatown, and the locals refuse to cooperate.

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
– Tonight’s four-episode block includes “The Gang Gets Whacked,” parts one and two, the episodes where Charlie finds and must bid adieu to his beloved Peter Nincompoop. Classic Charlie Day.

Bethenny Ever After
Jason and Bethenny plan a date night, but they’re still dealing with tension about his family, especially after he suggests another visit to his parents’ house in Pennsylvania.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– It’s the second season premiere of Too Fat for 15: Fighting Back on Style (8PM);
Adam tours the Ben & Jerry’s factory on Kid in a Candy Store (8:30PM, Food Network);
– Connie and Larry decide to be each other’s wingmen on Mad Love (8:30PM, CBS);
– The gang makes a life-size replica of a table hockey game, with movable players, on Cake Boss (9PM, TLC);
Heather Locklear plays a woman who tries to save her marriage after both she and the hubs are unfaithful in He Loves Me (9PM, Lifetime);
– An eight-year-old gets a killer rock-n-roll-themed bash on Outrageous Kid Parties (9:30PM, TLC);
Nelly‘s the subject of a new Behind the Music (10PM, VH1);
– A former college football star battles weigh gain on Heavy (10PM, A&E);
– On Pawn Stars (10PM, History), we find out how much money Houdini’s handcuffs and a Super Bowl trophy would fetch;
The Shat chats with Ed Asner on Shatner’s Raw Nerve (10PM, Bio);
– Daisy tries to clean up her friends’ problems on Skins (10PM, MTV);
Stargate Universe (10PM, Syfy) returns as Chloe tries to buy her cohorts time by contacting the aliens who abducted her.

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Seth Green and Jayma Mays;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Senator Rand Paul;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): Joshua Foer;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Betty White and The Script;
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Amy Poehler and The Situation (REPEAT);
Lopez Tonight (Midnight, TBS): Donald Glover and Forest Whitaker;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Owen Wilson, Kelly Ripa and Adele (REPEAT);
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Ricky Martin, Minka Kelly and Dana Carvey (REPEAT);
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Aaron Eckhart;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Thomas Lennon (REPEAT).

Potts Picks: The Weekend’s Best TV – March 5-6, 2011


Chopped All-Stars
– The most addictive show on TV kicks off a five-week all-star version, where Chopped judges, other Food Network personalities and contestants from The Next Food Network Star compete against each other for a big $50,000 donation to the winner’s favorite charity. Among those competing: Duff Goldman, Robert Irvine, Anne Burrell, Aaron Sanchez, Jacques Torres and Geoffrey Zakarian. Must. See.

11:30PM, SAT | NBC
Saturday Night Live
– What else is there to say? It’s pretty cool that Miley Cyrus is hosting the show that loves to poke fun at her. And that The Strokes provide musical entertainment for the episode.

America’s Next Great Restaurant
– Chefs Bobby Flay and Curtis Stone are among the mentors/investors in this reality competition, in which contestants pitch ideas for new restaurants. The grand prize: The winner will be given the finds to open a new chain of restaurants.

– It’s starting off to be a tough season for Ruby, as she’s regained 60 pounds and has another emotional run-in with ex-boyfriend Denny.

Army Wives
– Emmalin leaves for college, Denise is excited to meet her future daughter-in-law and Pamela considers a new job in Atlanta.

Celebrity Apprentice
– I’m not proud of how excited I am to see this particular season of Celeb Apprentice, but it does promise to be one of the guiltier TV pleasures of the next few months. Among the contestants: Real Housewives of Atlanta‘s NeNe Leakes, who wars with Star Jones; LaToya Jackson; Gary Busey; Jose Canseco; Meatloaf; and Mark McGrath.

Breakout Kings
Jimmi Simpson, a.k.a. Liam McPoyle, stars in this new drama about a group of convicted felons who’ve broken out of prison and are hired by U.S. marshals to help them track down other escapees. Their reward: A month off their sentences for each escapee they help track down.

Coming Home
American Idol alum Matt Rogers hosts this fantastic, moving new series that profiles families preparing to welcome their loved ones – troops from Afghanistan and around the world – back home.

Real Housewives of Orange County
– They’re baaack: Tamra hosts a shopping party to kick off the new season, and a sauced Gretchen takes the opportunity to tell the newly-single Tamra what she thinks of her.

Taking on Tyson
– Yep, it’s that Mike Tyson, and yep, he’s racing pigeons.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
Jaime and Cara are involved in a car accident in Japan on Amazing Race: Unfinished Business (Sun., 8PM, CBS);
– On the second season finale of Basketball Wives (Sun., 8PM, VH1), Evelyn goes to Cincinnati to visit Chad;
– Actor Terry Crews and his fam kick off the second season of their reality series The Family Crews (Sun., 8PM, BET);
Firefly (Sun., 8PM) begins airing on Science Channel (yay!);
– It’s season two of Secret Millionaire (Sun., 8PM, ABC);
Werner Herzog and Jackie Mason guest star as themselves on The Simpsons (Sun., 8PM, Fox);
– Only two episodes remain after tonight, and Alby turns the screws on Billy yet again on Big Love (Sun, 9PM, HBO);
– Hank has to sleep in his car after getting kicked out of the hotel on Californication (Sun., 9PM, Showtime);
Daniel Tosh: Happy Thoughts (Sun., 9PM, Comedy Central) is the comedian and host’s stand-up performance from San Francisco;
– Lynette tries to prevent Renee from adopting a baby on Desperate Housewives (Sun., 9PM, ABC);
David makes over a Monopoly-themed wedding on My Fair Wedding With David Tutera (Sun., 9PM, WE);
– On Undercover Boss (Sun., 9PM, CBS), the mayor of Cincinnati goes undercover as a city worker;
– Horatio works to find a serial killer after his latest victim narrowly escapes with her life on CSI: Miami (Sun., 10PM, CBS);
– The series premiere of Heavily Ever After (Sun., 10PM, TLC) follows the overweight Combs couple as they try to lose weight and get healthier.

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