DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

KARLE DUNBAR

Social Media Manager

Contributors

ALEX STRACHAN

GERALD JORDAN

CANDACE KELLEY

TOM BRINKMOELLER

MONIQUE NAZARETH

GABRIELA TAMARIZ

DAVID SICILIA

NOEL HOLSTON

JONATHAN STORM

 
 
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SecondSpin.com
 
TUESDAY
MARCH 28
2017

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

Fox, 8:00 p.m. ET

The “Battle Rounds” continue, along with the input from the guest mentors brought on by this cycle’s judges. It’s a combination of good advice, genial competitiveness, and very talented vocal performances. It’s also a feel-good program which, on TV these days, is an increasing rarity. And last night’s closing Battle Round, with Hunter Plake and Jack Cassidy, featured two impressive singers with beautiful harmonies. And harmony was the emotional mood as well: They performed together generously, and professed to respect and like each other a lot, even as they competed to win this round of competition. What a relief to watch, and to hear – especially in these times.

 
  
 
 

PBS, 8:00 p.m. ET

MINISERIES PREMIERE: This three-hour documentary series, presented in one three-hour prime time chunk, examines global war crimes, focusing on both the investigators and the investigations. If you’re looking for a total escape from current headlines, by the way, look elsewhere. For a full review, see David Hinckley's All Along the Watchtower. Check local listings.
 
  
 
 

TCM, 8:00 p.m. ET

Joanne Woodward and Lee J. Cobb star in this 1957 movie, one of the first to dramatize a case of multiple personality disorder. Cobb plays the therapist who discovers that his patient, played by Woodward, appears to have three very distinct personalities. A generation later, in 1976, Woodward played the psychiatrist treating a female patient with an even larger and more disparate array of personalities. That was in the 1976 NBC miniseries Sybil, starring Sally Field as the patient.

 
  
 
 

Fox, 9:01 p.m. ET

SERIES FINALE: Dem Bones, dem Bones, dem dry Bones… Tonight, after 12 seasons and 246 hours of television, Fox’s forensics crime procedural Bones, starring David Boreanaz and Emily Deschanel, says goodbye. The final episode has the team trying to find and capture, at last, the man who killed the father of Deschanel’s Dr. Temperance Brennan, a.k.a. “Bones.” And give Boreanaz a special nod for TV stability. For 20 straight years, he’s worked steadily in series television, starring or co-starring in just three series: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, and Bones. And for an appreciation of Deschanel and the role she plays, see David Hinckley's All Along the Watchtower.
 
  
 
 

FX, 10:00 p.m. ET

Elizabeth and Philip (Keri Russell, Matthew Rhys), the Russian sleeper spies living and working in Reagan-era America, have resigned themselves to the fact that their teen daughter, Paige (Holly Taylor), has become both aware of and intrigued by the family business. In tonight’s episode, she gets the chance to do a little covert operation of her own – while babysitting at the home of someone. Her parents are against the idea – but hey, the information could prove helpful…

 
  
 
 
 
 
Read and add comments HERE for today's Best Bets!
 
 

VIDEO WORTH WATCHING

Playful Innuendo – Shout Factory has released the complete DVD collection of the Paul Reubens 1986-91 CBS series Pee-Wee’s Playhouse that, as we all know, was just as much for the grownups as it was for kids. The jokes were usually down-the-middle for the young audience, but once in a while veered mildly into adult territory. Since she was the only woman around, they were usually aimed at Miss Yvonne (Lynne Marie Stewart) who, always in a pastel party dress and bouffant, played the ironic bits well. (Her coin operated horsey ride is at 3:30.) There are two Playhouse innuendo reels, with part 2, here. –Eric Gould
 
 

TV WE'RE WATCHING

  
   Visit TV We're Watching for these and other shows on
our DVRs right now...


American
Crime
ABC
Sundays
10 PM ET

The Americans
FX
Tuesdays
10 PM ET

Bates Motel
A&E
Mondays
9 PM ET

The Circus: Inside the Biggest Story on Earth
Showtime
8 PM ET

Feud: Bette and Joan
FX
Sundays
10 PM ET

Girls
HBO
Sundays
10 PM ET

HUMANS
AMC
Mondays
10 PM ET

Last Week Tonight
HBO
Sundays
11 PM ET

Legion
FX
Wednesdays
10 PM ET

Striking Out
Acorn.tv
Streaming
 
 

BUT WAIT... THERE'S MORE!


FRESH AIR FAVES

Audio of Bianculli's favorite 'Fresh Air' reports, and the stories behind them...


FAVES FROM
"THE MORGUE"

Bianculli's favorite newspaper articles, and the stories behind them...


EXTRAS & FEEDBACK

Share your favorite TV in-jokes and first TV loves...
 
 
 

Good news, TVWW readers: David’s new book from Doubleday, The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific is available on Amazon for $20.

Doubleday says: “Darwin had his theory of evolution, and David Bianculli has his. Bianculli's theory has to do with the concept of quality television: what it is and, crucially, how it got that way."

"The Platinum Age of Television is an effusive guidebook that plots the path from the 1950s’ Golden Age to today’s era of quality TV. For instance, animation evolved from Rocky and His Friends to South Park; variety shows moved from The Ed Sullivan Show to Saturday Night Live; and family sitcoms grew from I Love Lucy to Modern Family. A high point is the author’s interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Bob Newhart, Matt Groening, Larry David, Amy Schumer and many others...Bianculli has written a highly readable history." —The Washington Post

 
 

This Day in TV History

 
 
 
 
TV WWorth Buying
 TOP TVWW SPECIAL DEAL$
Pee-Wee's Playhouse: The Complete Series

Paul Reuben’s revived his TV character for last year’s comedy feature Pee-Wee’s Big Holiday and now, there is a new DVD version of his 1986-91 CBS series that was must-see Saturday morning viewing not only for kids, but adults alike. The Emmy-winning playhouse was a surreal mash-up artwork by Wayne White, music by Devo’s Mark Mothersbaugh and a cast of puppets and characters that included Laurence Fishburne, Phil Hartman and S. Epatha Merkerson (yes, that's Law and Order's Police Lieutenant Anita Van Buren...) The madcap series always finished with a moral message for the younger audience. This re-mastered HD collection includes all 45 episodes, plus featurettes on the design and writing of the show, cast interviews, all on 8 discs. It’s available at Amazon for $26. (And see TVWW's review of the Wayne White documentary, Beauty is Embarrassing, here.) –Eric Gould