Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Tuesday, March 8. All times are Eastern.
Of Kings And Prophets (ABC, 10 p.m.): Network television’s latest dalliance with the Biblical miniseries starts with a bang, as the Prophet Samuel tells King Saul that God has a suitably Old Testament demand: Destroy the Amakelites. Also, the shepherd David spends his introductory subplot trying to settle some family debts. We don’t need to read Erik Adams’ upcoming pre-air review to predict we might want to keep an eye on this David character.
New Girl (Fox, 8 p.m.): Jess gets back from jury duty just as we’re getting called in for jury duty, which we can’t believe is a coincidence. (Erik Adams would like to be the first of literally everyone to assure us that, yeah, that’s a coincidence.) Anyway, Jess immediately sets out to learn who one of her fellow sequestered jurors is in real life, which we’re guessing means there was some smoking hot dude among those 12 good people and true. Oh, and this means Megan Fox’s Reagan is leaving, which Nick is going to take great, just great.
The Real O’Neals (ABC, 8:30 p.m.): After last Wednesday’s double-length premiere, the show settles into its regular time in The Muppets’ vacates slot. Tonight’s episode sees the O’Neals looking to appease Martha Plimpton’s matriarch by observing Lent. We’re predicting failure on all fronts there.
Marvel’s Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC, 9 p.m.): TV’s most punctuated show returns from its second (and hopefully not last, but, yeah…) Agent Carter-induced hiatus with Coulson finding renewed determination to destroy Hydra. We feel like he resolves to do that pretty frequently, but we suppose that’s only necessary when dealing with an evil organization named after the mythological creature with an endless supply of heads. Oliver Sava is ready to give up the struggle, though, so please welcome the show’s new reviewer, Alex McCown.
Elsewhere in TV Club
Joshua Alston has a review of Showtime’s The Circus, which represents one of the most fearsome editing challenges in television history:
The Circus is still in production, and its heroic post-production team assembles the show mere hours before it airs on Sundays. The most recent episode, which chronicles the fallout within the GOP following Donald Trump’s Super Tuesday triumphs and the widening schism in the party, is a great example of just how close The Circus cuts it. The episode, appropriately titled “The Reckoning,” includes not only the Super Tuesday results, but the subsequent Republican debate, Mitt Romney’s speech calling for Trump’s ouster, Trump’s controversial decision to break his date with the CPAC conference, and even the results of the primaries and caucuses held the Saturday before it aired.
Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates Jr. (PBS, 8 p.m.): The show gets an extra 30 minutes for its third season finale, as Gates explores the ancestries of Dustin Hoffman and Mia Farrow, “whose families share a history of tragic deaths that helped shape future generations.” Well, now we’re kind of hoping said tragic deaths were the results of some feud between the Hoffmans and the Farrows, like some manner of New York thespian Hatfields and McCoys. Uh … probably not the case, though.
PBS Previews: The Best Of PBS Indies (PBS, 9:30 p.m.): This isn’t straight-up PBS class, but rather the promise of class to come. Still a decent chunk of class for a half-hour.
True Life (MTV, 10 p.m.): “The stories of two young people who believe they’re real-life witches with supernatural powers.” Yeah, we’re not sure how much the concept of “truth” intersects with these two. Or the concept of a life, for that matter. (And yes, we’re aware of just how much glass has gone into the construction of this particular house. Shut up and pass us another stone.)
Separation Anxiety (TBS, 10 p.m.): “A man is ready to pop the big question in the series premiere of this relationship-based game show with a unique spin.” Yep, nothing but lasting, rock-solid marriages coming out of this one.
Impact Wrestling (Pop, 9 p.m.): Given Kurt Angle’s extensive concussion history, we’re not really sure his farewell tour is anything but uncomfortable to watch at this point. But this figures to be Angle’s last match, at least for TNA and/or at least for a little while, so those who remember the Olympian in better days may want to tune in.
Blade: Trinity (Syfy, 6:30 p.m.): You know Marvel, it’s not too late to bring Blade into your current ever-expanding superhero universe. We’re going to go out on a limb and say Wesley Snipes is probably available.
The Rock (AMC, 8 p.m.): So here’s a deeply dumb question to ponder: Would this movie be better with the Rock in it? You might quite reasonably ask which role we have in mind for the erstwhile Dwayne Johnson. Could the people’s champion replicate Nicolas Cage’s twitchy heroism, Sean Connery’s grizzled badassery, or Ed Harris’ remarkable commitment to playing his bad guy with nuance and complexity found nowhere else in the film? The answer, of course, is for the Rock to play all the roles. The apex of all literature is remaking The Rock as a one-Rock show.
The Insider (Cinemax, 10 p.m.): Oh, this movie is damn good. So good that the Academy had to give Russell Crowe two rounds of makeup Oscars for overlooking this one.
W. (TMC, 10 p.m.): We’ll say this much: W. is way, way better than a late-period Oliver Stone biopic about George W. Bush has any right to be. Its reliance on the whole “daddy issues” theory of Bush borders on the facile, but as riotously, unapologetically slanted accounts of the Bush administration go, you could do a hell of a lot worse.
NHL Hockey: Penguins at Islanders (NBC Sports, 7:30 p.m.): Here’s another battle of first-overall draft picks, as Sidney Crosby and the Penguins take on John Tavares and the Islanders. Of the recent crop of first-overall guys, which we’ll define as those who started playing after the 2004 lockout, Tavares probably slots in at fourth best, behind Crosby, Alex Ovechkin, and Patrick Kane, though we can’t rule out Connor McDavid blasting past all of them in a year or two.
Damien: Angle’s story isn’t a completely happy one, given his well-publicized demons and his injury issues, but goodness was he great at both amateur and professional wrestling. Like that time he met Shawn Michaels!
No, wait, so sorry, that’s not it. This is what we had in mind, give or take the Linkin Park.