DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

GABRIELA TAMARIZ

Social Media Manager

Contributors

MONIQUE NAZARETH

JONATHAN STORM

GERALD JORDAN

DONNA J. PLESH

NOEL HOLSTON

DAVID SICILIA

 
 
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THURSDAY
NOVEMBER 20
2014

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

CBS, 8:00 p.m. ET

Sheldon (Jim Parsons) showed measurable and unexpected character growth a few episodes ago  -- growth that had the studio audience gasping in shock and applauding in approval. And tonight, now that he has professed his love for Amy (Mayim Bialik), and she has reciprocated,  they get to move forward.  More fun with flags!

 
  
 
 

TCM, 8:00 p.m. ET

Tonight, you can have your movie terror the way Paul Revere planned his warning signals about the British invasion: This 1963 Alfred Hitchcock classic should typify “One if by air,” but the redcoats were not yet that sophisticated with their manner of attack. But in this scary movie about a mysterious avian revolution, some of the most frightening scenes occur when the birds in question are sitting perfectly still, perched on land, or on playground bars – so “One if by land” works for The Birds, as I see it. Of course, that’s only a matter of a pinion…

 
  
 
 

IFC, 9:00 p.m. ET

And this 1975 Steven Spielberg killer shark thriller is, of course, representative of Paul Revere’s “Two if by sea.” It’s also representative of one of the best suspense films, or action films, or monster movies, or however you wish to categorize it, in the history of the movies.

 
  
 
 

ABC, 10:00 p.m. ET

MIDSEASON FINALE: This is what the networks, cable and broadcast, increasingly are calling their final first-run episodes of the year before the holiday break. I suppose it’s because “midseason finale” sounds a lot better than “the last episode before we pack things up until the New Year, when people start watching TV in large numbers again.” But on this particular midseason finale, we’re supposed to solve the murder that was introduced way back in the series premiere. My money’s on Professor Plum, in the library, with a lead pipe.

 
  
 
 

NBC, 10:00 p.m. ET

On tonight’s episode, another fall finale, Max (Max Burkholder) is a guest at a party thrown by his parents for the Chamber Academy – and it’s a party at which he’s determined to propel his relationship with his “girlfriend” to the next level. Which, to the objective outside observer, might as well be called “base camp.”
 
  
 
 
 
 
Read and add comments HERE for today's Best Bets!
 
 

VIDEO WORTH WATCHING

AN ALTERNATE VIEW OF ERNIE - Over ten years ago Katie Couric demonstrated to us all, by being brave enough to have a colonoscopy on the air during the Today show, that it was the responsible, painless, and smart thing to do for our health. Now someone new is offering us that same encouragement: Ernie from Sesame Street.  That’s right; Bert’s pal recently received a colonoscopy – live – on the Conan show to expose, so to speak, the ease with which it can be done. Unless, of course, something unexpected happens. Then things can get ugly.  –Linda Donovan

 
 

TV WE'RE WATCHING

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


The Affair
Showtime
Sundays
10 PM ET

Dr. Who
BBC America
Saturdays
9 PM ET

The Good Wife
CBS
Sundays
9 PM ET

The Graham Norton Show
BBC America
Saturdays
11 PM ET

Homeland
Showtime
Sundays
9 PM ET

Jane the Virgin
CW
Mondays
9 PM ET

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
HBO
Sundays
11 PM ET

Parenthood
NBC
Thursdays
10 PM ET

Parts Unknown
CNN
Sundays
9 PM ET

The Walking Dead
AMC
Sundays
9 PM ET
 
 

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...

TV JUKEBOX

A new edition of Bianculli's favorite TV themes, coming soon!
 
 
 
 

This Day in TV History

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 TV WWorth Buying
 TOP TVWW SPECIAL DEAL$
Doc Martin: Special Collection

Plenty of British TV deals this week at Amazon, including the series about a prestigious London surgeon with a problem – fear and panic at the sight of blood. To cope, Doctor Martin Ellingham (a.k.a. Doc Martin) has relocated to the seaside village of Portwenn to be the local GP and witness less gore. The doc is also socially inept in that high comic British way, completely lacking bedside manner. Martin Clunes (Men Behaving Badly, the original British version) gives a humorous portrait of an awkward genius who unwillingly grows attached to his local patients. 65% off at Amazon –Eric Gould