DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

JIM DAVIS

Managing Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

GABRIELA TAMARIZ

Social Media Manager

Contributors

ALEX STRACHAN

CANDACE KELLEY

DAVID SICILIA

MONIQUE NAZARETH

JONATHAN STORM

GERALD JORDAN

TOM BRINKMOELLER

NOEL HOLSTON

 
 
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SATURDAY
APRIL 30
2016

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

C-SPAN, 6:00 p.m. ET

This annual event is extremely entertaining for two different reasons – sort of like The Voice, which has the fascinating “blind auditions,” followed much later by the final rounds of quality competition. In the case of this particular black-tie event, the fun is spread out the same way: very early and very late. The early part comes at 6 p.m. ET, with the arrival of guests at the red carpet. For years, press corps members have used their plus-ones to invite high-profile and often very unlikely celebrities, and C-SPAN makes it all look even more awkward, and amusing, by running uninterrupted coverage throughout. Watch celebrities react to being ignored! Or bored! Or swarmed! And then, after the long and dull dinner portion, the real show begins, usually around 10 p.m. ET. That’s when President Obama, for the eighth and final time, takes his turn at the podium, along with this year’s host, Larry Wilmore from Comedy Central’s The Nightly Show. It’s a good guess that both of them will be quoted tomorrow all over the Internet, as well as in any remaining Washington newspapers.

 
  
 
 

ABC, 8:00 p.m. ET

This ABC special seems particularly ill-timed. Just as the White House correspondents are sitting down to dinner on live TV over on C-SPAN, ABC is presenting a taped special in which President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama host a program of jazz from the White House, featuring Herbie Hancock and others.

 
  
 
 

HBO, 8:00 p.m. ET

And while jazz is played at the White House, rock and roll, in another taped special, is celebrated on HBO. This is the 31st annual induction ceremony, and this year the honorees include Chicago (pictured), Cheap Trick, N.W.A., Deep Purple, Steve Miller and songwriter-producer Bert Berns. Included are salutes to performers who died during the year, including David Bowie and Prince. For a full review, see David Hinckley’s All Along the Watchtower.
 
  
 
 

PBS, 9:00 p.m. ET

CONCLUSION: This repeat documentary miniseries concludes with a look at the decades after WWII (specifically, 1946-80), and charts the postwar increase in popularity of the national parks. Check local listings.

 
  
 
 

TCM, 8:00 p.m. ET

This 1944 movie is one of the best early cinematic horror films – a ghost story in which a brother and sister, played by Ray Milland and Ruth Hussey, buy a house by the sea, and soon get swept away by encounters with and stories of ghosts.

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

VIDEO WORTH WATCHING

Now All the Guitars Gently Weep -- TVWW critic David Hinckley reports that the most poignant highlight of this year’s annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony special [on HBO Saturday 4/30 at 8 p.m. ET] will be a clip of the late Prince from his own 2004 Hall of Fame induction. Part of the clip includes this "super group" performance of While My Guitar Gently Weeps with a spectacular guitar solo from Prince, reminding us of the immense talent he possessed. -- Jim Davis

 
 

TV WE'RE WATCHING

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


The Americans
FX
Wedensdays
10 PM ET

Game of Thrones
HBO
Sundays
9 PM ET

The Good Wife
CBS
Sundays
9 PM ET

Inside Amy Schumer
Comedy Central
Thursdays
10 PM ET

 Last Week Tonight
HBO
Sundays
11 PM ET

Orphan Black
BBC America
Thursdays
10 PM ET

 Real Time with Bill Maher
HBO
Fridays
10 PM ET

 Silicon
 Valley
HBO
Sundays
10 PM ET

 United Shades of America
CNN
Sundays
10 PM ET

 Veep
HBO
Sundays
10:30 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!
 
 
 

From TV Worth Watching
TOP PICKS FOR YOUR HOME LIBRARY

The TVWW Seal of Approval is an honor we save for TV’s very best – our picks for a truly teleliterate home video library.
 
 

THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW: THE COMPLETE SERIES – This 2016 Paramount DVD offering is a newly repackaged release of the complete-series The Andy Griffith Show, one of TV’s more iconic and durable comedies. The extras assembled for this set remain woefully meager compared to the status of the series itself. But for all of what’s lacking in bonus material, what’s great here is the entire 1960-68 classic TV series itself – 249-episodes in a 39-disc set. Andy Griffith as Sheriff Andy, Don Knotts as Deputy Barney Fife, and Ron Howard as little Opie were at the center of a series as warmly nostalgic and soothing as its opening credits theme and sequence, whistling its way to the local watering hole. When I was in the hospital for a stretch a few years ago, the daily doses of The Andy Griffith Show I received on my hospital TV did me as much good, and comforted me, as much as anything the medical staff gave me. Well, except for the operation. And the post-op. And the rehab. And the drugs. But still, The Andy Griffith Show helped a lot. At Amazon for $70.David Bianculli

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
TV WWorth Buying
 TOP TVWW SPECIAL DEAL$

HUMANS: Season One

There’s no precise date for the Season 2 return of AMC’s sci-fi import HUMANS yet, but we eagerly await. One of the legitimate worth-watching hits of 2015, HUMANS is science fiction in premise only. While it envisions the day-to-day dilemmas of humanoid servants among us, the series is in every other way an engaging drama of freedom and morality. Some of the “Synthetics,” as the robots are called, may have been secretly programmed to gain actual human consciousness. HUMANS squarely confronts the idea of drones spawned as neo-slave labor, and as their masters, our arrogance, guilt — and new idleness. On sale at Amazon. —Eric Gould