Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Friday, April 19, and Saturday, April 20. All times are Eastern.
Doctor Who (BBC America, 8 p.m., Saturday): Poor Doctor! Normally, he would have been the top pick by now, but he ran into Happy Endings returning, our newfound love for Orphan Black, and the finale of Spartacus, so he’s had to wait three whole weeks to take his place atop the heap here at What’s On Tonight. Fortunately for him, we like haunted houses, and fortunately for us, this weekend’s episode is all about a haunted house in Scotland, complete with a ghost hunter. Alasdair Wilkins just hopes it doesn’t become an elaborate tribute to Ghost Mine.
House Of Cards (Netflix, 1 p.m., Friday): If there’s one thing Ryan McGee likes, it’s Major Dad. And if there’s another thing he likes, it’s finally understanding why there were all those jokes about the song “Tusk” back when this show debuted around the same time as The Americans. He gets it now, Internet!
Happy Endings (ABC, 8 p.m., Friday): Alex has a bunch of stockpiled coupons she hasn’t used? And Dave challenges her to use them all? This is relevant to David Sims’ interests! His greatest secret is his giant bunker of items he’s purchased with his many coupons, which he keeps buried beneath Central Park.
Gravity Falls (Disney Channel, 9 p.m., Friday): “Mabel discovers that her favorite boy band is made up of imprisoned clones, so she sets them free,” says a plot summary that makes our hearts go pitter-pat. Alasdair Wilkins was wondering when this show would get to this staple of the coming-of-age genre.
Grimm (NBC, 9 p.m., Friday): In tonight’s episode, a volcano threatens Portland. Kevin Mcfarland, secure in his Bay Area megalith, chortles heartily at the prospect of his friends to the north being covered in lava. Unless it’s the Yellowstone megavolcano finally blowing. That thing’s bad news!
Orphan Black (BBC America, 9 p.m., Saturday): Caroline Framke concludes that this show isn’t shy about piling on the mythology from the word go. And while she finds that exciting, it’s also worth it to remember all the shows that fell apart because of that. Ideally in an annual in memoriam clip reel.
Smash (NBC, 8 p.m., Saturday): It’s opening night for Bombshell, but now Eileen’s pissed off Richard Francis, arts editor of the New York Times! However will a show survive without a good review from an increasingly meaningless print publication!? Myles McNutt, subbing in for Todd VanDerWerff, knows.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Babylon 5 (11 a.m., Friday): One of this week’s episodes is about something called the “gropos,” which Wikipedia informs us is short for “ground pounders,” but which we prefer to think of as people with giant hands whom attractive people are terrified of. Rowan Kaiser thinks we are far too prurient.
The Twilight Zone (1 p.m., Saturday): One of this week’s episodes is called “One More Pallbearer,” but we keep trying to sing that title to the tune of “One Night In Bangkok” and coming up short. Does anybody have any hints as to how that might work? Zack Handlen needs it for his karaoke night.
WHAT ELSE IS ON
Hemlock Grove (Netflix, 12 a.m., Friday): Netflix’s latest original series experiment is all about werewolves and small towns and killin’ folk. Zack Handlen, who likes all of those things, is going to slam all 13 episodes and get you his thoughts sometime this weekend, then go to sleep. Good on you, Zack!
Who’s Lived In My House? (HGTV, 8 p.m., Friday): We don’t know, HGTV. It’s probably you, since it’s your house. But if you really need to know, then you probably don’t want to ask.
Phineas & Ferb (Disney Channel, 9:30 p.m., Friday): For the benefit of all of you that watch—and our nephew, who doesn’t read these things or even really care if episodes are new or reruns—we wanted you to know that this week’s episode is a new installment. It will probably be a comedic wonderland.
Out There (IFC, 10:30 p.m. Friday): Those of you who insist Phil Dyess-Nugent hates all things: We wish to inform you that he actually enjoys Out There and will be reviewing the season finale to tell you just why that is. So you can stop thinking he hates all things! He just hates most things! Carry on then.
Mary & Martha (HBO, 8 p.m., Saturday): Finally, it’s time for the red-hot malaria eradication film we’ve all been waiting for, starring Hilary Swank and Brenda Blethyn, and directed by Phillip Noyce! Simon Abrams hopes Noyce can take a premise that sounds pretty eat-your-vegetables-ish and make it good.
Spoiled Rotten Pets (National Geographic Wild, 9 p.m., Saturday): We know we’re not always your favorite people, here at What’s On Tonight, but man, if you wanted to get us a pet pig, we would surely spoil it rotten, and then maybe we could end up on an episode of this new show.
His Girl Friday (TCM, 8 p.m., Friday): We’ve probably praised this movie—one of our favorites ever made—in this space before, but who cares? We still love the shit out of it, and we love the banter between Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell. Plus, Ralph Bellamy as a guy who looks like Ralph Bellamy!
National Lampoon’s Vacation (Encore, 8 p.m., Friday): Have you been just dying to get your Chevy Chase in the ‘80s jollies out? Well, Encore has just the ticket for you, with the original trip with the Griswold family. (To tell you the truth, we’ve always found these movies a little overrated. Boo, us!)
Wrath Of The Titans (Cinemax, 8:15 p.m., Saturday): If you’re looking for something to do this Saturday night, can we recommend you check out the most useless sequel of last year? Who was really crying out for a sequel to the overstuffed, largely terrible Clash Of The Titans remake? Somebody, apparently!
Mexican League Soccer: Jaguares vs. Leon (ESPN2, 8:30 p.m., Friday): We don’t really know a thing about Mexican League Soccer, but it has to be better than your other options, which include golf. So! Mexican League Soccer it is! We’re cheering for the Jaguares because we think it means Tigers.
NBA Playoffs: A first-round game (ESPN, 8 p.m., Saturday): The season ended in suitably crazy fashion Wednesday night, with the Lakers vaulting past the Rockets into the 7th seed and the Jazz pissing it all away against the Grizzlies. All we can say is that the Clippers better make something of this.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Hannibal (Thursday): In case you thought this show was going to be all procedural crime solving all the time, you must have been heartened by this third episode, which largely deals with the after-effects of the death of the killer from the pilot. Molly Eichel is stylishly decorated with beautifully positioned gore.