Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Phoebe Tonkin (The CW)

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Monday, October 20. All times are Eastern.

Top pick

The Originals (The CW, 8 p.m.): Can’t a mother just have her sons over for family dinner? That’s all OG witch Esther Mikaelson wants on this week’s The Originals, but knowing her, she probably wants something a little more sinister than an update on who’s dating who and if the boys have any new job prospects. After all, remember what happened last time she tried to throw a ball? Klaus and Elijah rightfully become suspicious of their mother’s intentions, and call upon the help of new witch Lenore, played by Sonja Sohn of The Wire. It’s a dinner party you won’t want to miss, especially if Esther is serving up one of her signature blood cocktails:


Also noted

Jane The Virgin (The CW, 9 p.m.): Coming off of a great pilot, Jane is back for “Chapter Two.” Jane’s mom Xo threatens to sue Jane’s doctor. Thank god someone in this universe realizes that accidentally inseminating someone is grounds for legal action. You go, Jane’s mom!

The Millers (CBS, 8:30 p.m.): More #moms. In the second-season premiere, this series’ matriarch (played by the always wonderful Margo Martindale) looks for an apartment and makes a new best friend.

Turn Monday the 20th into Friday the 13th

Friday The 13th (AMC, 4 p.m.): When you think about Friday The 13th, you probably think of Jason, the masked killed throughout most of the franchise. But before Jason, there was Jason’s mom, whose love for her son was only rivaled by her love for tasteful cable-knit sweaters:


Friday The 13th Part 2 (AMC, 6 p.m.): Gone but never forgotten, Jason’s mom is dead, decapitated at the end of the first movie and presumably buried in her Lands’ End wardrobe. And now, Jason is back to take up the family knife! Don’t worry about the fact that Jason drowned in a lake. Seriously, don’t think about it at all. You’re almost halfway through this marathon and trying to make sense of what is happening will do you no good. Turn off your brain, and watch a #sadboy kill people. If you find yourself missing Mrs. Voorhees, fear not! Her head makes a few appearances in this film:


Friday The 13th Part III (AMC, 8 p.m.): “Are they really going to write about every Friday The 13th movie in this What’s On Tonight? Yes, yes we are! Part III is special because it’s probably the worst installment of the terrible franchise. Oh, and also because it’s the first movie that features Jason in his signature hockey mask:


Friday The 13th: The Final Chapter (AMC, 10 p.m.): Unlike most characters in these movies, you made it to the end! Well, not actually. The definition of “final chapter” has apparently been expanded by this franchise, because the 1984 film was followed by Friday The 13th: A New Beginning (1985), Friday The 13th Part VI: Jason Lives (1986), Friday The 13th Part VII: The New Blood (1988), Friday The 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989), Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday (1993, and also another a gross misuse of the word “final”), Jason X (2001), Freddy vs. Jason (2003), Friday The 13th (2009), and Friday The 13th Part ∞: Jason Dies Then Comes Back To Life Then Finds Love Then Kills People (okay, we made that last one up). But while you may not have made it all the way through this inexplicably never-ending franchise, you at least made it to the end of AMC’s marathon. Congratulations and also what’s wrong with you?

Regular coverage

Big Bang Theory (CBS, 8 p.m.)

Gotham (FOX, 8 p.m.)

Sleepy Hollow (FOX, 8 p.m.)

What else is on?

NCIS: Los Angeles (CBS, 10 p.m.): “The team members desperately search the city when they learn that someone from their past is targeting one of their own. Meanwhile, operational psychologist Nate Getz visits Nell to help her through a traumatic experience.” According to our extensive research, “one of their own” is Henrietta ‘Hetty’ Lange, Operations Manager of Los Angeles’ NCIS. Our research also indicates that she is not a mom but does have a maternal instinct for her agents and a love for Lady Gaga.


Castle (ABC, 10 p.m.): Castle has to go undercover as an elementary school teacher when an ice-cream vendor is shot. There aren’t any moms featured in the promo, but there are a million tiny devil children who presumably have moms.

American Dad! (TBS, 9 p.m.): You might be saying to yourself “hey wait, I thought this What’s On Tonight was all about the moms!” Well, it is. But we’re also running out of shows that readily allow us to talk about moms, so we’ll slip a quick dad in here. The 11th season of American Dad! continues on TBS tonight, and apparently Hayley decides to become a blonde because she hears they have more fun and stuff.


Twitches (Disney, 8:30 p.m.): Twin witches played by Tia and Tamera Mowry are reunited on their 21st birthday and have to save their long-lost mother from dark evils.

Fruitvale Station (Showtime, 4:45 p.m.): We’re still not sure how this movie—which depicts the very last day in the life of Oscar Grant, a young father gunned down by a Bay Area Rapid Transit officer—was so overlooked during awards season, especially for its magnetic star Michael B. Jordan. Despite very little screentime, Octavia Spencer gives a memorable performance as Oscar’s mother, Wanda.


Tyler Perry’s Meet The Browns (BET, 7 p.m.): Angela Bassett plays a single mom who meets a bunch of weirdo family members at the funeral for the father she never met. It’s an overlong comedy that tries way too hard, but hey, if we sludged through all of American Horror Story: Coven for Bassett, we can sludge through this.

Monday Night Football: Texans at Steelers (ESPN, 8:15 p.m.): The Houston Texans will try to break a nasty 10-game losing streak when facing off against the Pittsburgh Steelers tonight. (We couldn’t really figure out a way to talk about moms with this one, so maybe watch it with your mom?) And if you’re hoping for the Texans to pull off a miracle, just blast this all day long:

In case you missed it

Homeland: Josh Modell has officially taking over weekly coverage of Homeland, and this week he writes about Carrie’s lack of moral limits and his reservations about the Quinn-Carrie romance.


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