Potts Picks: The Weekend’s Best TV – January 21-22, 2012


Downton Abbey
– On the fighting front, Matthew and William go on a dangerous patrol mission behind German lines, while, back at home, Cora and Isobel are at odds over Downton Abbey’s medical services.

Drew Peterson: Untouchable
Rob Lowe undergoes a makeover to – lit-rally – look like the titular real-life former Illinois cop who was charged with killing his third wife (his fourth wife is MIA, too).

JB Smoove: That’s How I Dooz It
– The gym, police chases and King Kong are among the topics the Curb Your Enthusiasm scene stealer discusses.

Scorned: Love Kills
– ID’s latest unfolds the stories behind love gone wrong. Very, very wrong. Deadly wrong. You get the idea.

Til Debt Do Us Part
– A couple who are typically spend whatever they feel like on whatever they feel like seek Gail‘s financial advice when they’re expected their first child.

Marathon – You know him from The Office, but this is the role – as complicated genius British police detective John Luther – that won Idris Elba a Golden Globe award last week.

8PM, SUN | VH1
Mob Wives
Karen and Carla have a meeting that, unsurprisingly, ends with shouting and threats of violence.

Oprah’s Next Chapter
The Big O chats with George Lucas and his girlfriend at Skywalker Ranch, in part one of a two-part interview with the Star Wars daddy.

Real Housewives of Atlanta
Kim‘s on her own with the new house and baby when the NFL lockout ends and Kroy goes back to work. Meanwhile, Nene decides to go on the trip to South Africa, but with Marlo tagging along.

American Idol
– Yep, on a special Sunday night, post-football edition, night three of the early audition rounds continue.

House of Lies
– Marty (Don Cheadle) is confused, as is his son Roscoe, when the kid has a crush on two of his classmates, one a girl, one a boy.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– On Dog Whisperer (Sat., 8PM, Nat Geo Wild), Cesar heads to Fort Hood, Texas, where he helps train the dogs of U.S. Army members;
Bayou Billionaires (Sat., 9PM, CMT) is a reality show following a Louisiana family, previously poor, who become rich and start living like billionaires (yes, Bayou Hillbillies);
Tom Arnold hosts this sequel to My Big Redneck Wedding: My Big Redneck Vacation (Sat., 9:30PM, CMT);
– In the follow-up to An Idiot Abroad, An Idiot Abroad: The Bucket List (Sat., 10PM, Science Channel), Ricky Gervais‘ pal Karl Pilkington spends the night on a private island in the South Pacific;
Kenneth Branaugh and Zach Braff guest star on The Graham Norton Show (Sat., 10:15PM, BBCA);
– On Once Upon a Time (Sun., 8PM, ABC), Snow White is distraught as Prince Charming prepares to marry the daughter of King Midas;
– Lynette goes on a date with Renee’s hairdresser on Desperate Housewives (Sun., 9PM, ABC);
– The five remaining contestants have to run their own lunch carts on a busy NYC sidewalk on Rachael vs. Guy Celebrity Cook-Off (Sun., 9PM, Food Network).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV – January 20, 2012


Shark Tank
– Love this show! Mark Cuban, he of the NBA champion Dallas Mavericks, in onboard for the new season, and will use his NBA-team-owning skills to help ferret out new entrepreneurs, including, in tonight’s season opener, a pitch from NBA Hall of Famer Bill Walton, who teams with triathlete Dave Meyer to pitch a new water bottle business. Other projects pitched to the sharks: a celebrity ghostwriting business and an online funeral-planning business.

– Penultimate episode, which is sad because it was once a great show, and sad because it has definitely not been one in its final season. The lame Nicholas Quinn storyline continues to play out and takes Sarah and Chuck to Japan, while John Casey has to make a potentially life-changing decision.

– Peter’s still on the other side, where the alt-Fringe gang is faced with a serious new enemy.

– Monroe gets an upsetting massage from the creatures. Oops, make that message from the creatures … message. Totally different storyline that would have been.

On Freddie Roach
– The new reality series revolves around the titular Roach, a boxing trainer – now dealing with Parkinson’s – who operates from the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood. Filmmaker/actor Peter Berg directs the show, which covers Roach’s days as a boxer (which led to his Parkinson’s) all the way through his standing as the world’s top boxing trainer (Manny Pacquiao is among his clients).

10PM | IFC
– While Candance and Toni hold a book signing event, Irys and Spyke plan a wedding that will be anything but cookie cutter.

10 and 10:30PM | CMT
– The Swan family live on a big Texas ranch, where they plan and host big, fancy weddings. Get it? Swans … they live on a ranch … like the Ponderosa … Swanderosa.

10:30PM | IFC
The Increasingly Poor Decisions of Todd Margaret
– Todd mistakes a teddy bear for Alice’s ex-boyfriend. Oh yeah, he’s in the hospital and under a big dose of morphine at the time.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– New America’s Most Wanted on Lifetime (9PM);
– On Girls Who Life Boys Who Like Boys (9PM, Sundance), things go well enough at Olivia’s big charity event, but then … drama;
– On Man Caves (9PM, DIY), a New Yorker who’s far from home wants a den that reminds him of a swanky NYC lounge.

And the late-night line-up:
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Dana Carvey;
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Ryan Seacrest, Steven Tyler and Randy Jackson;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Terrence Howard;
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Joan Rivers;
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): 3 Doors Down;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Amber Heard (REPEAT).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV – January 19, 2012


10PM | FX
– In one of the TV season’s funniest guest spots, Burt Reynolds, Archer’s hero, lends his voice for “The Man From Jupiter,” in which the Smokey and the Bandit star is dating Archer’s mama, much to Sterling’s chagrin.

30 Rock
Kelsey Grammer returns (as himself), to help Jenna and Kenneth with a little issue, while Jack disapproves of Liz’s new boyfriend (guest star James Marsden) and Liz is busy trying to deal with blowback when a Tracy rant hits the Internet. Once again, ripped from today’s headlines …

American Idol
– The second night of first-round auditions go to Pittsburgh.

The Big Bang Theory
– In the show’s 100th episode, Leonard invites Penny to a romantic dinner. As Chachi Arcola would say, “Wa-wa-wa.”

Parks and Recreation
– Leslie and Ben find out that campaigning and romance may not make good bedfellows, while Chris tries to become BFFs with Ron Swanson.

The Office
– No good can come of this: Erin wants to make Andy jealous, which she attempts to do by flirting with one Dwight K. Schrute.

Project Runway All Stars
– The designers have to create an elegant cocktail dress. For Miss Piggy. For reals.

10PM | MTV
Jersey Shore
– Even though he’s missing his partner in bromance, the recently departed (not dead … he just hightailed it back to Staten Island) Vinny, Pauly celebrates his 31st birthday. Yeah, I know, 31 … told old to be actin’ like such a fool.

10PM | CBS
The Mentalist
– Jane goes all Mystery Inc. on the murder of a mobster’s son.

– This new Beavis and Butt-head-ish ‘toon revolves around Gary and Joel (voiced by Justin Long and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia producer/actor David “Rickety Cricket” Hornsby), two teen dorks who live largely without the restraints (and supervision) of adults. The series, produced by the It’s Always Sunny gang, also includes voicework from Fred Armisen, Romany Malco, Kristen Bell and Sunny‘s always awesome Kaitlin Olson.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– Bonnie is reunited with her mom on The Vampire Diaries (8PM, The CW);
– A family edition of winter-themed Wipeout (8PM, ABC) includes “Pain in the Ice” and “Frosty Family Tree”;
– Richard performs his 10,000th surgery on Grey’s Anatomy (9PM, ABC);
– Carter meets Reese on Person of Interest (9PM, CBS);
Megan Mullally guests as a rival talk show host on Up All Night (9:30PM, NBC);
– Addison and Jake meet with potential surrogates on Private Practice (10PM, ABC);
Ralph Fiennes visits the clubhouse on Watch What Happens: Live (11PM, Bravo).

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Owen Smith;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Elizabeth Banks;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): Carrie Rebora Barratt;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Kathy Griffin;
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Mark Cuban;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Tom Arnold;
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Ewan McGregor;
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Steven Wright;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Cory Booker and Foster the People (REPEAT).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV – January 18, 2012


American Idol
– The new season opens with first round auditions in Savannah. Who’s excited for another season? Will you watch Idol, The Voice, both, neither? Are you still tired of singing competition series after X Factor and America’s Got Talent? Will Steven Tyler‘s nonsensical ramblings seem as charming this time around? Is it at all possible this season will produce a contestant we can all be excited about, someone on the level of a Chris Daughtry or Carrie Underwood?

The Middle
– Frankie is an official Super Bowl volunteer, but, surprise, that does not prove to be as exciting a job opportunity as she had hoped.

One Tree Hill
– Nathan heads off to Europe, while Dan stays behind to play family, and Millie has trouble being honest with Mouth.

Modern Family
– Yup … this would be the episode in which Lily drops the F-bomb.

9:30PM | ABC
Happy Endings
– Max (the scene-stealing Adam Pally) and Alex band together to try to get Dave to stop wearing v-neck tees. And yes, they call it an “in-T-vention.”

10PM | CBS
– Tick, tick, tick … that’s the clock counting down to Marg Helgenberger‘s departure, which happens in next week’s episode.

10PM | ABC
– Jack’s in danger after he trusts the wrong person, Charlotte wigs when she has to move back in with her mom and Daniel’s romantic agenda may carry some bad consequences for him.

10PM | USA
Royal Pains
– Eric Kassabian’s (guest star Wilmer Valderrama) life is still in danger, which Hank blames on Dr. Van Dyke (Kyle Howard).

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– George takes his neighbors on a trip to Atlantic City on Suburgatory (8:30PM, ABC);
– A series of murders in San Francisco remind the team of the Zodiac Killer on Criminal Minds (9PM, CBS);
– It’s Elka’s 90th birthday on Hot in Cleveland (10PM, TV Land) … yes, just like Betty White;
– On Law & Order: SVU (10PM, NBC), a private military contractor is sexually assaulted after an incident with protestors;
– On Toddlers & Tiaras (10PM, TLC), the kiddies compete for a $10,000 prize at the Universal Royalty Hollywood pageant;
Charlize Theron is the guest judge on Top Chef: Texas (10PM, Bravo);
Jimmy Fallon guests on Watch What Happens: Live (11PM, Bravo).

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Shaun White;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Joe Nocera;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): David Frum;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Michael Fassbender;
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Jennifer Garner;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Will Arnett;
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Bill Cosby;
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Dr. Sanjay Gupta and David Duchovny;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): The Decemberists and David Guetta (REPEAT).

Potts Picks: Today’s Best TV – January 17, 2012


– Sure, Mags is gone, but there is still so much to love about the new season, including a throwdown between Raylan (Timothy Olyphant) and frienemy Boyd (Walton Goggins), a new Detroit mobster (Neal McDonough) who comes to Harlan to start trouble, another local businessman (Mykelti Williamson) who may end up making Mags look like a bunny rabbit, a surprisingly domestic-minded Raylan and a new, and hilarious, set of BFFs: Dickie Bennett (Jeremy Davies) and Dewey Crowe (Damon Herriman).

– It’s the Nene Leakes episode, in which the Real Housewives of Atlanta star guests as swim coach Roz Washington. Also, Will plans to propose to Emma.

8 and 9PM | WE
Texas Multi Mamas
– On back-to-back episodes, Stephanie and her husband sign papers for their new home, but Stephanie tells Candace that her marriage is in trouble.

New Girl
– Jess plans Schmidt’s 29th birthday party. Mike Schmidt is turning 29?!? I know, I know, but the Hall of Fame third baseman (and Ohio University alum: Go Bobcats!) is always the Schmidt that comes to mind for me.

9:31PM | FOX
Raising Hope
– When Hope displays signs that her IQ is way above average, Jimmy is inspired to try to get his GED. And then Burt and Virginia, thinking they can’t let Jimmy be the smartest adult in the house, decide to go back to school, too. Homeroom with Burt … that would be fun times.

– In the apps mystery basket: frozen French fries. Like you need anything else?

10PM | NBC
– Adam and Kristina fret about the cost of Haddie’s college plans, Zeek gets surprising medical news and Crosby begins a new relationship.

– Lydia and John both gets new partners, and John’s is a no-nonsense cop who looks a lot like Lucy Liu. Because she is.

10PM | MTV
Teen Mom
Jenelle and Kieffer are back together (again), which causes problems between Jenelle and her mother (again). And this show is growing tiresome, especially with the news that Leah – who, spoiler alert, isn’t even with husband Corey anymore – is pregnant (again) with twins (again).

10PM | USA
White Collar
– In the midseason premiere, Neal and Peter have to work together to retrieve the kidnapped Mrs. Peter, a.k.a. Elizabeth, a.k.a. Tiffani Thiesen.

Worth flipping to during commercials:
– A Chinese buffet temptation, a water transfer challenge and a shocking decision by one competitor mark tonight’s new episode of The Biggest Loser (8PM, NBC);
– On Shipping Wars (9 and 9:30PM, A&E), Roy thinks hauling a mint-condition collectible is going to be easy peasy, but then he hits a big storm;
– Back-to-back new Storage Wars eps on A&E (10 and 10:30PM).

And the late-night line-up:
Conan (11PM, TBS): Antonio Banderas and Fred Armisen;
The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (11PM, Comedy Central): Liam Neeson;
The Colbert Report (11:30PM, Comedy Central): Jennifer Granholm;
The Late Show with David Letterman (11:35PM, CBS): Ricky Gervais;
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (11:35PM, NBC): Adam Lambert;
Jimmy Kimmel Live (12:05AM, ABC): Ne-Yo and Katherine Heigl;
Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (12:35AM, NBC): Kyra Sedgwick;
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson (12:37AM, CBS): Colin Firth;
Last Call with Carson Daly (1:35AM, NBC): Thievery Corporation.

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