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MONDAY
JANUARY 21
2013

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

Various Networks, Check local listings

To watch President Obama’s public inauguration to begin his second term (the private one was held yesterday), tune in, starting at 7 a.m. ET, to any of the broadcast or cable morning shows. It’ll be the big topic, and include expanded live coverage. C-SPAN begins coverage an hour earlier, and CNN plans coverage most of the day and night, covering inaugural balls and other related events.
 
  
 
 

CBS, 8:00 p.m. ET

Last week, the closing seconds teased us with the actual occurrence of the title – if only for a second, and if all we saw of her was from the rear, as she was playing a guitar onstage. But at least it’s a start, and moves the plot forward, however incrementally. Meanwhile, Ted seems intent on moving backwards, by dating a girl so young, she asks him if he fought in Vietnam. She’s played by Ashley Benson, who plays Hanna on ABC Family’s Pretty Little Liars.
 
  
 
 

HBO, 8:00 p.m. ET

I liked hearing Martin Short so much on this first Real Time of 2013, which premiered live on Friday, that I thought it was worth pointing out in this repeat telecast. Especially on such a slow night.
 
  
 
 

Fox, 9:00 p.m. ET

SERIES PREMIERE: Kevin Bacon stars in this bold, intriguing but very violent new series, playing a former FBI agent who’s called in to help recapture a serial killer obsessed with the works of Edgar Allen Poe. One thing this series is guaranteed to do? Quoth the critic: Neverbore. For a full review, see Bianculli’s Blog.
 
  
 
 

PBS, 10:00 p.m. ET

If you liked American Splendor, the quirky, original film biography of quirky, original comic-book writer Harvey Pekar, chances are you’ll like this, too. Beauty is Embarrassing is a close, inventive look at artist Wayne White, whose works have enlivened everything from Peter Gabriel videos to Pee-wee’s Playhouse. Part of this feature is an autobiographical comic strip, narrated by White himself, telling how he met his future wife. It’s a charming study of a Tennessee wild child who left town, but never conformed – and never completely grew up. Check local listings.
 
  
 
 
 
 
Read and add comments HERE for today's Best Bets!
 
 
 
 
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862 Comments
 
 
Mac
Sad week for no TVWW as not only no recommendations of what to watch,but missing takes on the RNC swap meet(I'll trade you one Trump/Pence logo from 7/15 for five Trump/Pence logos from 7/18 and throw in an original Michelle Obama speech ),the Colbert/Stewart shows,the appearance of SNL on MSNBC(they return next week from Philly at the DNC's dance,so Kate McKinnon can steal the night away from the real Hillary),and...Ailes, Ailes, more Ailes and Rupert's new job. And some critique is needed about that PBS/NPR cheapo-cheapo RNC coverage while Charlie Rose had an exclusive with Hillary. Meanwhile, no Palin at the RNC 'cause evidently Science shows that Alaska is far away from Cleveland,but Sarah made numerous stops for The Donald earlier in Iowa,Florida and California.National Enquiring minds want to know...
Jul 24, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
TVWW
Hello BB readers! We will continue to be offline for a few more days at minimum. Please Stand By as you have been, and keep chiming in with your own BB picks! We appreciate it and will return soon. --TVWW
Jul 23, 2016   |  Reply
 
Neil
Has this turned into Bianculli's quadrennial two week vacation? Or has he used the convention weeks to recover from some cosmetic work? (To extend his "Radio Substitute Host" shelf life a while longer.) C'mon, guys, if there really is a technical problem, I'll gladly code the Best Bets into HTML pro bono until it's fixed.
Jul 24, 2016
 
 
 
Karen
Good to know there are other BB co-dependents out there ;)
Jul 22, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Bill
List the Best Bets here in the comments, seems like an easy short term fix
Jul 22, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Tricia
There's nothing quite like sudden absence to reveal a dependency. I ???????? you B3. Please come back soon.
Jul 21, 2016   |  Reply
 
Tricia
Substitute 'need' for the question marks above. I tried to use Unicode to insert italics, but it didn't work here.
Jul 21, 2016
 
 
 
SharonGS
Just a program note, since 'Thirteen' on BBCAmerica has been a 'Best Bet' in the past weeks. BBCAmerica is showing tonight's episode--I think the last one--at 6 p.m. EDT.
Jul 21, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
TVWW
Yes, Best Bets are temporarily offline, but reader dedication to TVWW is not! (Which we LOVE, by the way...) Please Stand By, we will return as soon as possible! --TVWW
Jul 20, 2016   |  Reply
 
Angela
So sorry you're having to deal with *that* side of technology. Hope it's not a Kernel Panic! ;-) Good luck!
Now for an important question. What's everyone watching tonight, Friday the 22nd?
Thanks!
Jul 23, 2016
 
 
 
Joe in SF
There's a whole bunch of stuff on TV tonight. You should watch it. If you don't like what you are watching, change the channel to something else.

I thought I would give it a try to fill in during the technical difficulties, but I've failed. Bianculli makes it look so easy each day. I'll sit patiently and wait for the Best Bets to return.
Jul 20, 2016   |  Reply
 
Casey Chapple
Wish we could fave comments. Joe would get one. Yep.
Jul 21, 2016
 
 
 
Anne
Sorry your having technical troubles. But why don't you publish your best bets on the Facebook page?
Jul 20, 2016   |  Reply
 
Angela
Maybe they're busy trying to fix the technical difficulties!
Jul 23, 2016
 
 
 
Tom Powers
You were way too kind in your review of Vice Principles.
Jul 19, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
James
NOoooo!
Must...
have...
best...
bets...
* sitting in corner, tearing up newspaper *
Jul 19, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Neil
It's Monday, July 18th as I write this, and today's Best Bets is a test pattern and the comment that it's unavailable today due to technical difficulties. That by itself is funny, but it's also the day that the Republican Convention and Trumpence Coronation begins. Coincidence, irony or cosmic karma?

(By the way, did anyone else notice how "Trumpence" sounds like a worthless old English coin?)
Jul 18, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Mac
7/16/16-Stay with TCM after their monthly spooling of The Odd Couple for more Walter Matthau with Don Siegel's(Dirty Harry) 1973 caper, Charley Varrick. Matthau is a bad guy who accidentally steals money from the mob and Dean Wormer,yes,Dean Wormer(John Vernon)is part of the badder guys. Joe Don Baker,too,but you would expect that. Everything else,including Mrs. Jack Lemmon,is unexpected. While TCM showcases the '70s this month,this is about as '70s as they get. They say it is closed captioned,which is nice since the first DVD from Universal forgot to do that.
Jul 16, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Jon88
If you were considering featuring "Thirteen" on Thursday 7/14, here's an ominous sign: BBC America has moved it from 10 p.m. to 6 p.m. Hey, at least they're running out the string.
Jul 13, 2016   |  Reply
 
Casey Chapple
Valuable info, Jon88. BBC America is the stingiest, most disrespectful (to audience AND artists) network out there. Thanks for keeping an eye on them.
Jul 13, 2016
 
 
 
Hi name is Toby Jones, not Tony.
Jul 11, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Mark Meister
um...did you mean to write ABC? I didn't know ABC could cancel a CBS show :)

You wrote:
This is a warning, not a recommendation. More “new” Angel from Hell episodes are tossed off, and aside, in prime time tonight, as CBS uses the dog days of summer to amortize some of the losses from one of its comedy dogs from earlier this year. Jane Lynch stars. At least she did for a week or two, before ABC canceled the show and had all these episodes left over. Welcome, therefore, to Write-Off Theater.
Jul 9, 2016   |  Reply
 
Linda Donovan
Just a typo... But you're right, of course. Oh how they wish they had that power.
Jul 9, 2016
 
 
 
Casey Chapple
"Casey
"That game is followed, at 11 a.m.""

Not me, folks. I'm the one with a sense of humor. Also, I would never slam this site. Nothing slammable here. That's why it's an open tab 24/7 in my house.
Jul 7, 2016   |  Reply
 
Casey Chapple
Angela, you're a total doll! (Note: I can be mean, but only to people who can handle it.)
Jul 16, 2016
 
 
Angela
Phew! That's good to know, Casey. When I read what I thought was your previous comment I about lost hope in mankind. I was afraid that a latent mean streak had recently manifested. Glad I was wrong. Keep the spirit. Cheers
Jul 13, 2016
 
 
 
Casey
"That game is followed, at 11 a.m."

Sports don't interest me but in this case it is a "match", as in game, set, match. If you are going to waste space on sports it is important to get it right.
Jul 6, 2016   |  Reply
 
 
Mac
A mention that during TCM's Western tribute, on July 27,2:15AM(ET),Michael Cimino's troubled Heaven's Gate is already scheduled. With Cimino's passing this past Saturday,another time to visit what either is his masterpiece or the movie that pushed United Artists into MGM's dirty,tiny Trump-like hands.
Jul 5, 2016   |  Reply
 
Mac
Uh,I forgot how TCM looks at a calendar.Their clock starts at 6AM while most of the world sees this as six hours behind(well,TCM is in the business of showing OLD movies,right?)technically the movie will air Thurs., July 28 @ 2:15 AM(ET). Your recording device will thank you in the morning.
Jul 5, 2016
 
 
 
Casey
Since sports don't interest me at all, I'm grateful you didn't waste any space on sports today. To be sure, I'm grateful for everything you do, or don't do here. It's YOUR site; you get to do what you want. Hit or miss, you usually call it right for me, and I assume for most of your readers.

BEST BETS FANTASY DISCLAIMER: Do NOT depend on Best Bets for bets tailored precisely to your tastes. If you think about it, that would be impossible, wouldn't it? WOULDN'T IT?
Jul 3, 2016   |  Reply
 
Angela
Yup, Casey, it would be impossible for the BBs to be tailored precisely to each individual viewer's taste. In fact I failed once again to find the option for clicking on BBs tailored just for me. ;)
Jul 6, 2016
 
 
 
 
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David Bianculli

Founder / Editor

Behind David in the picture is the first TV owned by his father, Virgil Bianculli, a 1946 Raytheon. (The TV, not his father. His father was a 1923 Italian.) David Bianculli has been a TV critic since 1975, including a 14-year stint at the New York Daily News, and sees no reason to stop now. Currently, he's TV critic for NPR's Fresh Air with Terry Gross, and is an occasional substitute host for that show. He also teaches TV and film history at New Jersey's Rowan University, and his most recent book, 2009's Dangerously Funny: The Uncensored Story of 'The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, has recently been purchased for film rights.  He's currently at work on another.

 
 
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