Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Tuesday, June 18. All times are Eastern.
So You Think You Can Dance (Fox, 8 p.m.): In last week’s episode, one of reality TV’s most unforgiving competitions reached Las Vegas and promptly winnowed the field down from 159 to just 33 dancing hopefuls. Tonight introduces the Top 20, which mathematically still leaves room for 13 final, even more brutal cuts before the real fun can begin. Oliver Sava assured us that such heartbreak is entirely essential to the dancing, then promptly resumed his sadistic cackling.
Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family, 8 p.m.): In what is sure to be the most poignant yet challenging story told on television this year—nay, this century—there’s a subplot in tonight’s episode in which “Alison’s mom gives Hanna a parrot.” We can only guess what kind of fiendish psychological subterfuge might be going on behind this impromptu parrot bequeathing, but Caroline Framke is on the scene to sort it all out.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
The Shield (Classic) (11 a.m.): The second season reaches its climax as the Strike Team prepares to take down the Money Train, and we’re assuming that said train is some sort of magical, steam-powered locomotive that winds its way through sunny Los Angeles distributing cash to all the needy children. Brandon Nowalk is figuring out how best to break the truth to us.
Six Feet Under (1 p.m.): Today’s episode features a fierce debate between Federico and David, as they argue over whether it’s morally right to hold funeral services for a telemarketer. John Teti feels we should point out that we’re talking about a telemarketer who also killed a bunch of people, but we’re not sure that last bit is strictly relevant to the episode’s core moral dilemma.
The Office (Classic) (3 p.m.): It seems weirdly fitting that a show still trying to build an identity distinct from its U.K. counterpart would end its first season after a very British six-episode run. Erik Adams came for the big basketball showdown between the office staff and the warehouse—he’s a real stickler for flagrant personal intentional fouls—but he’s staying for the guest appearance from 2005-era Amy Adams, right before her star really exploded.
WHAT ELSE IS ON
Sex: How It Works (National Geographic, 8 p.m.): With this two-hour special, National Geographic promises to “leave the snickering behind” as it examines the science of everything from orgasms and arousal to sexual dysfunctions, as well as the societal and chemical underpinnings of intercourse. We’re sure this is all very noble and educational and whatnot, but there’s just no way we can watch something like this without snickering, so that’s that.
The Voice (NBC, 9 p.m.): A few months back, we checked in on the season premiere when we heard there would be a mostly new judging panel, but we quickly checked out again once we realized that necessarily meant no more Cee Lo Green and his animal sidekicks and no more weird sexual tension between Adam Levine and Christina Aguilera. Now, we frankly have no idea who’s judging this crazy thing, although we’re pretty sure it isn’t Myles McNutt, as that would make his review kind of awkward… or amazing.
Storage Wars (A&E, 9:30 p.m.): The second of tonight’s two new episodes is the show’s 100th, and how better to celebrate that milestone than with a trip out to the desert town of Lancaster, California, the childhood home of such luminaries as Judy Garland, Frank Zappa, and Captain Beefheart? In lieu of a guest appearance from any of those deceased icons, the Storage Wars crew will presumably hang out with the town’s next most famous native son, retired Kansas City Royals semi-great Kevin Appier. He’s pretty much the baseball equivalent of Captain Beefheart, if you think about it (please don’t think about it).
Blood & Oil (Discovery, 10 p.m.): The channel’s latest reality docudrama offering wastes no time in going for the emotional jugular, as a small-time Ohio oilman mourns the untimely death of his father while trying to keep his company afloat while competing with much bigger competitors. But then, even if you do get all those prized drilling rights, you’ve still got to fend off the ever fearsome and unscrupulous Burns Slant-Drilling Company.
Hang ‘Em High (Reelz, 3 p.m.): This 1968 western perhaps isn’t one of Clint Eastwood’s all-time classics in the genre, but it does give him a particularly larger-than-life backstory as a man who gets falsely accused of theft, survives a lynching, and vows to hunt down the men that almost killed him, with a special emphasis on posse leader Ed Begley. Besides, we’re trying to raise awareness for our sequel script set 45 years later, in which earth-conscious desperado Ed Begley Jr. vows familial vengeance on an octogenarian Clint Eastwood, because who wouldn’t want to see that showdown?
The Color Of Money (NBC Sports, 8 p.m.): Speaking of tardy sequels, Martin Scorsese’s movie picks back up the story of Paul Newman’s pool shark character Fast Eddie Felson a quarter-century after he first played the role in The Hustler. While it’s still something of an open question as to why Scorsese felt the need to make such a sequel in the first place, the film did win Newman a long overdue Oscar, and it boldly imagines a world in which the best young pool hustlers include the likes of Tom Cruise, John Turturro, Forest Whitaker, and even Iggy Pop for some reason.
NBA Finals: Game 6: Spurs at Heat (ABC, 9 p.m.): Miami has alternated wins and losses going all the way back to their conference finals series against Indiana, which is good news coming off their most recent road defeat to the Spurs. The bad news for the Heat is that they still would have to win consecutive games to repeat as champions, and the potentially worse news for them heading into Game 6 is that Manu Ginobili has apparently remembered how to play basketball.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Teen Wolf (Monday): As most shows tend to do in their third seasons, Teen Wolf introduced a storyline about virgins and human sacrifice last night. Phil Dyess-Nugent is suitably intrigued, but he’s mostly just impressed that the episode actually remembered to give the show’s main werewolf hunter something to do.