Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Tuesday, Jan. 17. All times are Eastern.
Justified/Southland (FX/TNT, 10 p.m.): Two of TV’s best dramas—both on cable, both about law enforcement—return tonight with great premieres that hit the ground running. The former focuses on the aftermath of the events of season two and everybody wants a piece of the cash that’s still floating around. Naturally enough, Raylan Givens gets into the middle of this, as that’s what he does. In the latter, Lucy Liu joins the cast, John returns to work after back surgery, and TNT continues to do penance for all of its shitty shows with this good one. Scott Tobias covers the former; Josh Modell covers the latter.
Glee (Fox, 8 p.m.): Will enlists the glee club to help him sweep Emma off her feet. Confidential to Will: Your relationship may be suffering because you’re always surrounded by teenagers. Todd VanDerWerff can be your relationship consultant.
Switched At Birth (ABC Family, 8 p.m.): This episode is called “Self Portrait With Bandaged Ear,” which is a really great title and one that more shows should use. Carrie Raisler did a self portrait, but she forgot the bandaged ear, so it just sucked.
New Girl (Fox, 9 p.m.): America! Your new favorite sitcom heroine has an all new episode this week! Did you forget how much you loved her in the month or so since she’s been gone? She’ll be sure to be as endearing as possible! Erik Adams will, too!
Raising Hope (Fox, 9:30 p.m.): Hope shows signs of above average intelligence, and you can imagine how these yahoos react. Phil Nugent showed signs of above average intelligence and now he’s a TV reviewer. It doesn’t always get better, Hope.
Frontline (PBS, 10 p.m.): Been wondering how the disaster at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant might affect nuclear standards in the U.S.? This edition of Frontline will probably answer all of your questions. Or Meredith Blake’s review will.
Parenthood (NBC, 10 p.m.): Adam and Kristina crunch numbers for Haddie’s college plans. Can you imagine a more exciting plotline than that? Todd VanDerWerff, renowned accounting nerd, certainly can’t. He’s super psyched for it.
White Collar (USA, 10 p.m.): USA’s breezy caper series with the weird bromance at the center (as opposed to all of their other breezy caper series) returns with a standoff over the U-boat treasure. Kenny Herzog is ready to run a long con on you.
TV CLUB CLASSIC
FLCL (11 a.m.): Sometimes we read Hayden Childs’ reviews for this series, and we have no friggin’ clue what’s going on. But then we relax and just accept that some things can’t be properly explained in traditional TV review format and move on.
The Muppet Show (1 p.m.): Valerie Harper and Twiggy? It’s like somebody read Erik Adams’ pitch for a throwback sitcom about two crazy single gals who find themselves living together in the storage room in the basement of an art museum.
The Larry Sanders Show (3 p.m.): It’s Larry’s birthday, and Kyle Ryan printed up Who/What/Where/When/Why invitations on PrintShop over clip art of a microphone, but you never RSVPed, so he doesn’t know if you’re coming. Jerks.
WHAT ELSE IS ON?
American Experience: Custer’s Last Stand (PBS, 8 p.m.): PBS devotes two hours to telling you all about something you already know. Namely: Everybody’s going to die, and there’s nothing you can do about it. Whatever happened, happened.
Hidden City (Travel, 9 p.m.): Travel Channel heads into the unseen corners of New Orleans. We’re not planning on watching, but we’ll bet that former New Orleanian Marcus Gilmer will record this, keep forgetting to check it out, then quietly delete it.
Remodeled (The CW, 9 p.m.): The CW sends a bald asshole around the country to small modeling agencies in various random cities, then makes him yell at everybody about how they need to be better. Margaret Eby checks it out and yells at you.
Storage Wars (A&E, 10 p.m.): Look: Just watch this. You know you’re going to. You know you’re going to enjoy yourself heartily. And you know it’s going to be the best thing you ever did. Here’s hoping every locker is filled with vintage baseball cards.
Freaky Friday (Oxygen, 8 p.m.): For a while there, Lindsay Lohan seemed like she might actually be one of those child stars who was also a solid actress. Instead, we were all proved wrong. But you can remember when she didn’t suck here.
Love Is A Many Splendored Thing (TCM, 10 p.m.): We’ve never seen this movie, but the description of it had us at “the relationship between a Eurasian doctor and an American journalist.” You don’t see the phrase “Eurasian doctor” every day.
Australian Open: Early-round Play (ESPN2, 9 p.m.): We don’t know if any of you are tennis fans—we suspect a few of you must be—but here’s six hours of ball-whacking action for those of you who just need your balls whacked. (Hee hee!)
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Being Human (U.S.) (Monday): SyFy’s series about the madcap antics of supernatural roommates returns, and Phil Nugent is always happy to see Meagan Rath doing all those Meagan Rath-y things she does so well. Check it out.