Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Sunday, August 12. All times are Eastern.
Animal Practice (NBC, 10:38 p.m.): On its final night of keeping Olympics viewers hostage, NBC uses its sway over their viewing habits to—oh man, is that Annie’s Boobs palling around a veterinarian hospital with Justin Kirk? Critical defenses depleted. That adorable capuchin alone will double Go On’s bonkers post-Olympics ratings. Will Harris and Erik Adams have the early review, in case you’re interested in the non-monkey aspects of Animal Practice.
Rev. (Hulu, 5:30 p.m.): Differences in philosophies are settled on the football pitch, as Adam attempts to assemble a side that can shut down a hotshot atheist teacher. Todd VanDerWerff doesn’t believe in soccer.
The 2012 Summer Olympics (NBC, 8 p.m.): Todd VanDerWerff does, however, believe in the power of a good closing ceremony, which will provide links to every British cultural touchstone not alluded to in the opening of the London games, including The Spice Girls, George Michael, Monty Python, black cabs, Wallace and Gromit, the Mr. Men books, HP Sauce, and good humor about dumb jokes like these.
Hell On Wheels (AMC, 9 p.m.): Having exhausted the patience of at least one A.V. Club writer, the work of reviewing Hell On Wheels is passed on to Alasdair Wilkins. It’s just like building the railroad, only with words and exhausted sighs about looking up the spelling of Bohannon for the umpteenth time.
True Blood (HBO, 9 p.m.): With vampire attacks on the rise, the Authority kicks off a propaganda campaign to soothe human nerves. Carrie Raisler suggests the following slogan: “When you ride WITHOUT A VAMPIRE—therefore depriving him or her of your sweet, sweet neck blood—you ride with Hitler!”
Falling Skies (TNT, 9 p.m.): It took us until the première of the Red Dawn remake’s trailer to realize that Falling Skies is just Red Dawn, but with fewer dead parents and aliens in place of communists. Les Chappell hollers a hearty “WOLVERINES!” from atop his desk chair.
Longmire (A&E, 10 pm.): Well, Longmire, it’s been a beautifully photographed, somewhat disappointing first season. S’pose it’s time y’best get t’ mosyin’ off inta that dust-tinted sunset. Zack Handlen will ride along side ya.
Breaking Bad (AMC, 10 p.m.): Look, we’re not saying that tonight’s episode of Breaking Bad is a better Western-styled story than the whole of Longmire’s first season, but it does make good on that “Just because you shot Jesse James don’t make you Jesse James” line from a few episodes back. Prepare for The Review Of The Breaking Bad Episode “Dead Freight” By The Critic Donna Bowman.
The Newsroom (HBO, 10 p.m.): The News Night crew weathers the first part of a two-parter, entitled “Tragedy Porn.” As opposed to “Trainwrenck Porn,” which is a term Scott Tobias is yet to apply to online reactions to The Newsroom.
Weeds (Showtime, 10 p.m.): Shane graduates from the police academy, whereupon he’s placed in a district overseen by Howard Hesseman and tasked with neutralizing neighborhood terror Bobcat Goldthwait in a series of hijinks-filled setpieces. Either that, or Myles McNutt is suffering from heavy duty Police Academy Week hangover.
Political Animals (USA, 10 p.m.): The big story in real-life politics this weekend is Mitt Romney’s only-sorta-surprising running-mate selection—so let’s all delve into a more exciting world where our lawmakers fret about more Chinese submarines and their son’s overdose. The Newsroom can handle Romney next season—Molly Eichel has tonight’s hot sub scoop.
Episodes (Showtime, 10:30 p.m.): Matt’s packing on the pounds, which gives this week’s Episodes episode synopsis the chance to throw around a “weighty issue” pun. David Sims just clucks his tongue and shakes his head.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
South Park (Classic) (1 p.m.): Phil Dyess-Nugent remembers that one time The Fonz jumped over all those buses at Arnold’s, and then everybody had ice cream. Even for a town as weird as South Park, Colorado, this is an exceedingly strange week.
The Simpsons (Classic) (3 p.m.): Homer makes an attempt to live without the cause of and solution to all of life’s problems: alcohol. His life is then twisted into a grotesque, funhouse-mirror reality, a lot like what Nathan Rabin’s currently seeing at the Gathering Of The Juggalos.
WHAT ELSE IS ON?
High School Moms (TLC, 8 p.m.): Proving its utter classiness via Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, TLC moves right down Compromised Credibility Road to rip off Teen Moms.
Ultimate Air Jaws Reloaded (Discovery, 9 p.m.): For those who live every week like Shark Week, is the real thing the highlight of their year, or just another seven days of maximum awesomeness? The way every word in the title of this special screams “EXTREME!,” we can’t see how the latter scenario could be true.
The Comedy Central Roast Of Roseanne (Comedy Central, 10 p.m.): Since Roseanne Barr is a presidential candidate, does that mean Comedy Central has to give equal time to others running for the highest office? Here’s looking forward to FuturObama, Mitt-stery Science Theater 3000, and President Jill Stein (because the concept of a Green Party commander-in-chief is inherently hilarious, right?)
All You Can Meat (Travel, 10 p.m.): Hot dog! Chuey Martinez steaks his claim in the Travel Channel pantheon, grilling chefs and searching for carnivore cuisine that’s a cut above the rest. Hopefully it doesn’t get butchered in the editing process. [Rim shot. Disappointed sigh.]
Escape From New York (BBC America, 7 p.m.): The world seems to be circling the drain in 2012, but at least things are better than they are in John Carpenter’s vision of New York circa 1988! Though that universe has Snake Plissken, so… maybe the dystopia does have it better.
Idiocracy (IFC, 7:30 p.m.): Of course, each passing day brings us closer to an era of Brawndo-irrigated crops and machine-gun-toting, pro-wrestler-like presidents, so maybe we ought to find our own Plissken and get while the gettin’s good.
MLB Baseball: Braves at Mets (ESPN, 8 p.m.): Queens hosts a battle for the middle of the National League East, as Atlanta attempts to maintain a hold over a NL Wild Card bid—and maybe, just maybe, take a run at the first-place Nationals.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Gravity Falls: This supernaturally themed cartoon has gotten very, very good very, very quickly, creating a wonderfully weird world of Alasdair Wilkins’ “Animated Twin Peaks” dreams. Now, the greatest mystery of all: Will we add it to the regular TV Club rotation?