Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Thursday, Dec. 1. All times are Eastern.
Parks And Recreation (NBC, 8:30 p.m.): It’s December, which means TV will be going away very soon, and won’t you be missing it when you’re forced to talk to your family? But until then, NBC’s got a couple more weeks of its Thursday comedies to show you, and we’re particularly intrigued by this Parks, which is entitled, “The Trial Of Leslie Knope.” We can only assume that she’s been put on trial for her very soul, and that Mark Brendanawicz has returned from the beyond to act as the attorney keeping her from Hell itself. Or, y’know, not. Steve Heisler’s on the jury.
Community (NBC, 8 p.m.): Competition is often a boon to this show, so tonight’s episode, featuring Jeff and Shirley getting really into foosball in an attempt to take down a smug classmate, could be a good one. Todd VanDerWerff hates the foos.
The X Factor (Fox, 8 p.m.): Tonight: Someone will be eliminated. The number of people talking about that elimination at this site will consist entirely of Emily Yoshida. It will be sort of lonely and sad, but you’ll all be sorry. Someday.
The Office (NBC, 9 p.m.): Maura Tierney turns up tonight as the wife of Robert California, just making us wish even more that the show had taken a page from NewsRadio now that Steve Carell’s gone. Myles McNutt also has M’s in his name.
Beavis And Butt-Head (MTV, 10 p.m.): The episode summaries for this show are sort of hysterical, actually, since they try to pin a plot on an essentially plotless show. Kenny Herzog will have the usual collection of quotes and gags.
Burn Notice (USA, 10 p.m.): Tonight’s episode sounds like the annual one where we all realize that the inevitable Sam Axe spinoff from this show could be a lot of fun. Scott Von Doviak would watch such a show, though he’s not sure about this one.
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia (FX, 10 p.m.): And here’s the annual Sunny lo-fi parody of big budget movies, as the gang takes drastic action to see the big summer hit in theaters. Emily Yoshida will drive all the way across her living room to see it.
Prime Suspect (NBC, 10 p.m.): This is a dead show walking, but we still kinda like it, so we’re going to keep covering it until NBC stops airing it or Hayden Childs just loses interest completely. Whichever comes first. Honestly, we’d bet on NBC.
The League (FX, 10:30 p.m.): Will Forte drops by for an episode, and we’re betting he’ll be playing roughly the same, Will Forte-y kind of guy that he usually plays. Not that Margaret Eby minds, since that Will Forte-y guy can be a lot of fun.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Star Trek: The Next Generation (11 a.m.): Zack Handlen’s just a few weeks from being done with this show forever (as he concludes on Dec. 22), and this week, he asks what the heck is up with the show forcing daddy issues on everybody.
Seinfeld (1 p.m.): David Sims, meanwhile, asks you if you remember Kenny Rogers Roasters, or if you knew that even though the chain went bankrupt, there are still a handful of locations clinging to life throughout the U.S. You probably didn’t!
Cheers (3 p.m.): The gang’s back to talk about Coach finding out his daughter’s engaged to a real numbskull (we like that word) and Sam dating Julia Duffy and exploring a weird might-have-been for the show’s casting.
WHAT ELSE IS ON?
Santa Claus Is Comin’ To Town (ABC, 8 p.m.): It’s sort of a wonder the networks haven’t just resurrected the entire Rankin-Bass catalog, since the ones they air every year are, essentially, a license to print ad dollars. Ol’ Kris Kringle returns tonight.
Keep A Child Alive With Alicia Keys (Showtime, 9 p.m.): This is a show about Alicia Keys doing charity work, but we want a game show. For every question Keys and a partner get wrong, a child is lowered one foot more toward the alligators!
One Lucky Elephant (OWN, 9 p.m.): This nature documentary got a fair amount of acclaim during a brief theatrical release, and now it’s making its TV debut on Oprah Winfrey’s network. We can imagine her yelling, “That’s one lucky elephaaaaant!”
Weed Wars (Discovery, 10 p.m.): Ryan McGee checks out the debut of a series about a medical marijuana dispensary in Oakland, California, and we expect plenty of wink-wink, nudge-nudge in the comments section, if you know what we mean.
The Fugitive (AMC, 8 p.m.): Though it’s irretrievably from 1993 and, thus, kind of instantly dated, there’s something still so purely entertaining and watchable about this movie. It’s a good, old-fashioned thriller. Like your mom used to make.
Ondine (Showtime 2, 9:30 p.m.): This Neil Jordan movie is no Secret Of Roan Inish, but it carries a mystical charge all its own. Plus, it’s got Colin Farrell, doing his best to make you forget that period where he was really, really overexposed.
College Football: West Virginia at South Florida (ESPN, 8 p.m.): Why on Earth is there a West Virginia game in ESPN primetime every week? We know we could just look this up, but it sure seems weird that’s the team America’s glommed on to.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
America’s Next Top Model (Wednesday): Somehow, Tyson Beckford and Tyra Banks wearing what appeared to be a bedazzled toilet seat cover weren’t enough for Margaret Eby to give this any more than a C-. Check out her review to find out why.