Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Wednesday, Dec. 7. All times are Eastern.
Revenge (ABC, 10 p.m.): When the fall season started, we certainly didn’t expect ABC’s goofy soap Revenge to become one of our new favorites, but it’s swiftly risen in our estimation, thanks to its plot twists, fun characters, and surprising moral complexity. Plus, if you’ve never watched an episode, it’s pretty easy to dive right in with tonight's midseason finale because everybody talks about what they’re going to do and why most of the time, so you can get caught right up. Carrie Raisler would also like to remind you the right way to say the show’s title is to tilt your head skyward and yell, “REVEEEEEEENGE!”
The Middle (ABC, 8 p.m.): It’s a night of Christmas episodes on ABC and NBC (well, we don’t know if Harry’s Law is Christmas-themed, but it should be). Here, the Hecks probably learn you don’t need money to enjoy Christmas. Will Harris begs to differ.
Survivor (CBS, 8 p.m.): It’s the “reunion with family members” episode, but tonight, the episode summary says, one family member crosses the line. We’re assuming that means they bring in a machine gun. Now Carrie Raiser has a machine gun. Ho ho ho.
Up All Night (NBC, 8 p.m.): Both Blythe Danner and Jason Lee return tonight, as Reagan attempts to make Amy’s first Christmas super special. Erik Adams wonders why she’s even trying. Amy won’t remember anything for another few years!
The X Factor (Fox, 8 p.m.): We’re already down to the final five acts? How on Earth is Simon Cowell moving through things this quickly? Does he have access to a time machine? Emily Yoshida’s been to a taping of this show. Maybe she can tell us.
Suburgatory (ABC, 8:30 p.m.): “Tessa feels responsible when her father breaks up with his girlfriend.” Heh, heh, heh. We’ll bet she does. And by that, we mean that she likely feels bad that her father must put her needs over his own. Ryan McGee gets it.
America’s Next Top Model (The CW, 9 p.m.): It’s time for the finale? Doesn’t this all seem just a little anti-climactic? We’re betting that Allison wins, mostly because she’s an Internet meme. Margaret Eby hopes Tyra proclaims herself the all-star.
Modern Family (ABC, 9 p.m.): The family decides to celebrate Christmas early and in a hurry. Donna Bowman’s been over this. How many sappy monologues are you going to have to hear before you understand you can’t rush family togetherness?
Work Of Art: The Next Great Artist (Bravo, 9 p.m.): The artists are challenged to create “worthy” high art that will also sell. We recommend they do a bunch of paintings of nature scenes, maybe with ducks in ‘em. That’s what John Teti likes.
Happy Endings (ABC, 9:30 p.m.): We might be a little Christmas-ed out by this point (impossible!), but here’s hoping Penny hiring Max to play Santa does the trick. Because that sounds funny! David Sims once hired a bum to play his Santa.
American Horror Story (FX, 10 p.m.): Sounds like we’re getting a big info-dump, as Violet learns the rules of the House. We hope they’re more exciting than the rules of Todd VanDerWerff’s house, which include, “Just throw all your trash on the floor.”
Psych (USA, 10 p.m.): Last week, we got a bunch of William Shatner jokes out of our system, and now Gus and Shawn are hanging out at a commune full of eccentrics. Kevin McFarland’s getting all his hippie jokes ready for your laughter.
Top Chef (Bravo, 10 p.m.): Now, we’re just spitballing here, but we’d really love to see a show where America’s Next Top Model does battle with the Top Chef. Emily Withrow, can you make that happen for us? Use all your Hollywood contacts!
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Survivor (Classic) (11 a.m.): And then maybe they could face off with one of the Survivors? Again, just spitballing here, but we think this could be a great show. Meredith Blake would have to design the modeling-cooking-survival challenges.
The Sopranos (1 p.m.): Yep, it’s time for the episode where Tony spends, like, half the show in a dream, and Annette Bening is there, and so are a bunch of dead people, and whatever. Todd VanDerWerff is ready to look for meaning that isn’t there.
TV CLUB ADVENT CALENDAR
Santa Vs. The Snowman (Tuesday): We’ll confess that we had no idea this one started out as a TV special until Donna Bowman brought that fact to our attention. We just assumed it was the domain of IMAX screens at regional science museums.
WHAT ELSE IS ON?
Pearl Harbor: 24 Hours After (History, 8 p.m.): Commemorate the “day of infamy” by checking out this History Channel show about the day after the Pearl Harbor Attack, as FDR figured out his next moves. (Spoiler alert: It involved war.)
World’s Smallest Man/World’s Strongest Toddler/My 40-Year-Old Child (Discovery Fitness & Health, 8 p.m.): Did we just plan out your evening for you? We think we just did.
The Soup (E!, 10 p.m.): In all the hubbub last week about a certain person’s birthday, we forgot to mention that E! has moved The Soup, for no apparent reason, to Wednesdays. Serious question here: Do TV network executives hate Joel McHale?
State Of Play (BBC America, 10 p.m.): It only took eight years (and a DVD being mostly readily available on these shores) for someone to import this great British miniseries, but it starts up tonight. Kevin McFarland fills you in on why to watch.
Picnic At Hanging Rock (Flix, 8 p.m.): If you’ve never seen Peter Weir’s eerie classic about schoolgirls going on an outing in the early 20th century, well, tonight’s as good a time to watch it as any. It’s a truly great film, with some gorgeous shots.
Tiny Furniture (Sundance, 9 p.m.): Lena Dunham wrote and directed this super-indie film when she was 6 years old or something, and it led to critical acclaim, an upcoming Criterion DVD, and an HBO show produced by Judd Apatow. Not bad.
College Basketball: Arizona at Florida (ESPN, 7 p.m.): If you’re in the Northern climes—or even if you’re in Southern California, which is pretty chilly (for Southern California) right now—watch a couple of warm-weather basketball teams face off.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
New Girl (Tuesday): Erik Adams is wondering if New Girl is ever going to find a way to approach sexuality within its hyper-twee universe. Maybe. But when your main character can’t say penis, that’s not a promising starting point at all.