Avoid the outdoors this long weekend, with all new Doctor Who
More What's On Tonight?
- Futurama airs the first episode of its second final season
- After a brutal round of Vegas Week cuts, So You Think You Can Dance is ready to introduce its chosen Top 20
- Our coverage of Batman: The Animated Series comes to an end with an abrupt cut to black
- True Blood returns to make Sundays less cerebral, more visceral
- Summer means fewer quality dramas to go around; why not try Magic City?
Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Friday, August 31, and Saturday, September 1. All times are Eastern.
Doctor Who (BBC America, 9 p.m., Saturday): Just in time for September, it’s everybody’s favorite violator of the space-time continuum, The Doctor! (He’s not actually a real doctor. No, we don’t understand it either.) Keith Phipps doesn’t know exactly what to expect from the season premiére, but he knows that it’s called “Asylum Of The Daleks,” and if there are two things he likes, it’s asylums and Daleks. He hopes the episode ends with the big Dalek who never said anything picking up a sink and breaking the window, so he can escape to lope across a nearby field.
Boss (Starz, 9 p.m., Friday): Kane’s getting more and more enamored of his new aide, Mona, which causes him “to get swept up in her enthusiasm for a housing-redevelopment project,” says the episode summary. Sonia Saraiya just knows there’s nothing sexier than a housing-redevelopment project. Oooh.
Gravity Falls (Disney Channel, 9 p.m., Friday): There’s no new episode tonight, but we don’t care, because Alasdair Wilkins is going back to take a look at the episodes we didn’t cover, so we don’t have to give the show the pre-emptive TV Club Classic treatment. Today, he looks at episodes three and four.
Lost Girl (Syfy, 10 p.m., Friday): The season finale is almost here, as Bo makes a life-threatening choice and those closest to her suffer serious injuries. Listen, you can do whatever you want, Lost Girl, but you’d better not kill off Kenzi. She’s the only thing that keeps Kevin McFarland going most weeks.
Strike Back (Cinemax, 10 p.m., Friday): The guys hole up in an Algerian farmhouse and prepare for an attack by Al Qaeda. Which is, y’know, just another week for those two crazy kids. Myles McNutt once holed up in a Nova Scotian farmhouse and played lots and lots of Mousetrap. Does that count?
TV CLUB CLASSIC
Babylon 5 (11 a.m., Friday): For those of you who’ve been waiting for this show to turn the corner and become the great show Rowan Kaiser kept assuring you it would be, well, here’s the first season finale, where Rowan assures us everything gets started. It’s called “Chrysalis,” and that just sounds ominous.
Firefly (1 p.m., Friday): It’s the first of three episodes that never aired on Fox, as Christina Hendricks’ Saffron returns to ensnare the Serenity’s crew in a scheme to rip off a valuable antique weapon from a very rich man. Noel Murray and Donna Bowman are spending their Labor Day doing much the same.
WHAT ELSE IS ON
America’s Next Top Model (The CW, 8 p.m., Friday): So you remember how we said Margaret Eby would be covering last week’s episode? That was totally a lie, because she’s actually covering this week’s episode. Don’t we have egg all over our faces! Anyway, if you want regular coverage, tell your friends.
North Woods Law: On The Hunt (Animal Planet, 8 p.m., Friday): Animal Planet calls this an “enhanced edition,” and we hope that doesn’t mean the network has just taken an old episode of the show and inserted slightly different footage here and there. Give it to us straight, Animal Planet! Come on!
Great Performances (PBS, 9 p.m., Friday): It’s the Vienna Philharmonic! Under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel! Performing a program with a “Dances and Waves” theme! With dancers from the Vienna Ballet! We know there’s no way to get you Dudamel-heads even more excited for this one!
Real Time With Bill Maher (HBO, 10 p.m., Friday): Dinesh D’Souza, who’s the guy whose book formed the basis for that 2016 Obama’s America that one guy on your Facebook wall keeps talking about, is one of the guests tonight. We’re going to guess Bill’s discussion with him will be polite and even-handed.
One Giant Leap: A Neil Armstrong Tribute (Discovery, 8 p.m., Saturday): Before you settle in with brand new Who, you can check out this tribute to the real man who walked on the moon. Sorry. We totally just sounded like a mom in 1985 there. But we couldn’t help it. We love Neil Armstrong that much.
My Big Redneck Vacation (CMT, 9 p.m., Saturday): Somebody named Tommy and somebody named Tammy are getting married at some castle, and we’re going to guess the “comedy” will stem from how they are not the sorts of people you’d expect to get married at a castle. Can anyone confirm this?
Sin City (IFC, 8 p.m., Friday): We know lots and lots of people just love this exercise in stylization from Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller, but we’re going to buck that trend and say this movie’s kind of shitty. No. Really. It is. Okay, the part with Mickey Rourke is basically fine. But other than that? Shitty. Really.
Traffic (Showtime, 8 p.m., Friday): Steven Soderbergh made a whole movie about the futility of the drug war, crammed full of great actors, and then Hollywood gave it four Oscars, and somehow, it didn’t end the whole thing. It’s almost as if nobody really pays any attention to Hollywood at all! Weird.
The Band Wagon (TCM, 8 p.m., Saturday): This satirical Vincente Minnelli film is one of the greatest movie musicals ever made. Cranked out by the MGM musical factory, it involves a bunch of show-biz types who decide to mount a musical version of Faust, like everyone has at one point or another.
College Football: Boise State at Michigan State (ESPN, 8 p.m., Friday): Good news, residents of Idaho! You finally have reason to wake up in the mornings again, now that the Boise State Broncos have returned to the field! Still, with only seven starters returning, they’ve got their work cut out for them.
Truck Competition: USHRA Monster Jam (Speed, 8 p.m., Saturday): Every so often, we ask ourselves why we don’t have a whole section devoted to the finer points of the monster truck arts. If we’re going to cover books, shouldn’t we also be covering monster trucks? Mount your arguments in comments.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
Wilfred (Thursday): What is Wilfred? Why does Ryan see him? What will happen if he stops seeing him? How long can the show extend these questions before it feels vaguely unfulfilling? If you’re betting an episode named “Questions” will answer any of this, Rowan Kaiser is sorry to inform you you’re wrong.