TUESDAY
JANUARY 22
2013

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

ABC, 8:00 p.m. ET

SERIES PREMIERE: Does TV really need another cooking competition show? Of course not. But this one, like The Voice, brings something new to the mix: a democratic sense of fair play. In The Voice, contestants, in the initial round, are heard but not seen, so judges spin their chairs around in approval based on only the singing skills of the competitors. The Taste is the culinary equivalent of that. A quartet of judges, including Nigella Lawson (pictured) and Anthony Bourdain, select the best recipes in a blind taste test. Not blind as in blindfolded, but blind as in not knowing which chefs prepared which dishes, and having only one spoonful to register a very important first impression. So taste tonight's episode, and form your own first impression.
 
  
 
 

PBS, 8:00 p.m. ET

This installment is devoted to prime-time soaps – but has such a narrow focus, it’s devoted almost entirely to Dallas, its spinoff Knots Landing and its main Eighties competitor Dynasty. Though ABC’s Sixties hit Peyton Place does get a mention, the genre’s first prime-time series, DuMont’s Faraway Hill in 1946, isn’t noted at all, not even with a fleeting mention. Nor, for that matter, is the current TNT revival sequel to Dallas, which seems really odd. All that said, this hour is worth watching for getting Larry Hagman on the record before he died, and for exploring and explaining both the “Who Shot J.R.?” and “Bobby Ewing in the Shower” Dallas phenomena. Check local listings.
 
  
 
 

NBC, 10:00 p.m. ET

SEASON FINALE: This final episode of the season is a pivotal one, especially for the women on the show. Kristina (Monica Potter, pictured) gets ready for the next stage of her cancer treatment, and Sarah (Lauren Graham) makes the choice regarding the two men in her life.
 
  
 
 

BBC America, 10:00 p.m. ET

SERIES PREMIERE: Dominic Monaghan, the charismatic actor who played Charlie on Lost and “Merry” Brandybuck in the Lord of the Rings movies, takes viewers on a hectic romp to try and hunt dangerous animals and insects – but only with a film crew, and a lot of knowledge and enthusiasm. He ends up being an infectiously delighted, unafraid and nature-loving mixture of Sir David Attenborough and the late Steve Irwin. The opener takes him, and us, to Laos, and deep into a cave in search of the world’s largest spider. For a review of the show, and an interview with Monaghan, see Bianculli’s Blog.
 
  
 
 

FX, 10:00 p.m. ET

Where are things going this season? I’m not sure – but the twin primary plots this year, a cold case involving a skyjacker thief and the intrusion of a new fundamentalist religious sect into the Kentucky countryside, seem quite promising. And Timothy Olyphant, as U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens, continues to swagger with a wry comic edge that hasn’t been seen since early Eastwood.
 
  
 
 
 
 
Read and add comments HERE for today's Best Bets!
 
 
 
 
Leave a Comment: (No HTML, 1000 chars max)
 
 Name (required)
 
 Email (required) (will not be published)
 
 Website (optional)
 
 
 
 Page: 1 of 22  | Go to page: 
421 Comments
 
 
Eileen
It just isn't Easter until Charlton Heston parts the Red Sea! Thanks for the mention; it's an Easter Week tradition in my home. (And shame on the networks. Where is Jeffrey Hunter's King of Kings, The Robe, Demetrias & the Gladiators, Jesus of Nazareth? They used to be shown (pardon me) religiously during Holy Week.)
Apr 19, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
AGpxUa I think this is a real great blog article.Much thanks again. Really Great.
Apr 18, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Sarah
Yes I'm not the only one who gets fustraded with CBS sports on Sunday night ruining my TV watching, football, college basketball and even maybe golf "sigh".
Apr 13, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Alan
David,

Why does it take so long to post your daily tv worth watching? Some days I can view the recommendations around 9 a.m. Other days I can't seem to get them until early afternoon. My preference is the earlier the better.
Apr 12, 2014   |  Reply
 
Casey
Alan, why not work your viewing of Best Bets into your own schedule later in the day so you won't be disappointed, or left hanging around the site waiting for an update? Put another way, no reason in the world why websites should be run according to the wishes of one patron.
Apr 14, 2014
 
 
 
Curtis
Die Hard - best Christmas movie ever.
Apr 9, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Dan Malloy
11:04 Eastern time Monday and the website is showing Sunday Listings. Adjust your clock!!!
Apr 7, 2014   |  Reply
 
Peggy
Seriously, again? Think of TVWW as a public service. Google is your friend.
Apr 9, 2014
 
 
 
HiK6IQ Wow, great article.Really looking forward to read more. Keep writing.
Apr 6, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
SharonGS
Final Four: Florida vs. UConn and Wisconsin vs. Kentucky
Apr 5, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
SharonGS
Elite Eight? Try Final Four!
Apr 5, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Peggy
Cry free parenthood!!
Apr 4, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Barry
No love for the series finale of Raising Hope?
Apr 4, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Eileen
Already left you a post under your Komical Kardashian Komments. Didn't remember it was April Fools until I started my comment, and then remembered a Revered TV Worth Watching Tradition - The April Fools Recommendations! Thanks, quite enjoyable. Forgot there was so much junk on tv.
Apr 1, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
dan
April fools day, got it.
Apr 1, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Bob
You asked, "What could possibly be more interesting than a TV show about arm wrestlers?" I am waiting for Celebrity Nerd Game of Arms. I want to see Sheldon Cooper vs Pee Wee Herman, or Alan Harper vs Niles Crane.
Apr 1, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Patrick
The Discovery Fitness one-hour special, THE MAN WITH THE 132-LB. SCROTUM' is a rerun. C'mon David.
Apr 1, 2014   |  Reply
 
NeilRWC
Besides, the South Park guys beat you to the punch, at least a couple years back , in an episode where Stan's father gets an "enlarged scrotum" from (or due to) medical marijuana.
Apr 1, 2014
 
 
 
Sarah
for my final words on HIMYM go to sarahwatches4u.blogspot.com
Mar 31, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
SharonGS
Thank you for pointing out the Craig Ferguson-Drew Carey job switch. Drew and Connie Schultz talking Cleveland should be a rare treat, too. I'll set my DVR for both Craig and 'The Price Is Right'.
Mar 31, 2014   |  Reply
 
 
Mac
TCM's Mar. 28th celebration of movies, involving food, ended on a warped note with Soylant Green followed by Night of the Living Dead.But before those,yes,Big Night.Found a copy of this just a few weeks ago at the area's last remaining Blockbuster Going Out of Business sale.Just days left before closing and this gem was ignored-mine!This is food porn wrapped around a small story of two brothers that reaches epic importance.Timpano-lasagna on steroids.
Mar 29, 2014   |  Reply
 
vape lady
Computer broke and it's way too difficuct to type on this 2" cell phone. Buf had to chime in my opinion about this wonderfully fun and smart movie. Does anyone knowe there more movies by this writer? Way too frustrustrating for me to do a search to find out on a not smart cell phone
Mar 30, 2014
 
 
 
Bob Prestifilippo
Deliverance on 3/27 note Pudgy Bobby is Ned Beatty not Ronny Cox in a dual role.
Mar 27, 2014   |  Reply
 
David Bianculli
Ha! You're absolutely right. Bad typing on my part. Good catch on yours. I fixed it. Thanks...
Mar 27, 2014
 
 
 
Elise
I love the pictures of the lovely, lanky, blond cheerleaders when the NCAA tournament is a best bet. Not. Is the best bet about basketball or cheerleading? I am a little put off by what comes off to me as potentially sexist ...although you could be honestly appealing to the demographic.... (Chastising with affection and kid gloves, because you are my go to place for my tv viewing!)
Mar 27, 2014   |  Reply
 
Me again
THERES my basketball players!
Mar 30, 2014
 
 
Elise
Glad to make you laugh. I'll buy the gator story. And I'll respect your fifth amendment right.... ;-)
Mar 28, 2014
 
 
David Bianculli
This made me laugh. I'm from UF, and I chose the photo not for the "lovely, lanky, blond cheerleader," but for the gator mascot. My defense is that the photo choice, in this case, wasn't sexist at all. In many other cases, however, I plead the fifth...
Mar 27, 2014
 
 
 
 
 Page: 1 of 22  | Go to page: 
 
 

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.