Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Thursday, September 24. All times are Eastern.
Heroes Reborn (NBC, 8 p.m.): After all the digital ink spilled making fun of NBC’s decision to renew/reboot a not-that-beloved series that went off the air only five years ago, it’s hard to believe Heroes Reborn is finally here. The “event miniseries”—which is doubling as Heroes’ fifth season—debuts tonight with a two-hour premiere. In his pre-air review, Josh Modell called the show, “smart, clever, slightly silly, a bit overstuffed, and fun as hell,” which bodes well. Now our own superpowered writer Kate Kulzick takes over weekly reviews. Along with returning favorites like Masi Oka as Hiro and Jimmy Jean-Louis as The Haitain, the show adds some new faces to the mix. That includes Zachary Levi, who clearly hopes he’ll be the Zachary Quinto of this reboot.
Grey’s Anatomy (ABC, 8 p.m.): Grey’s Anatomy returns for, remarkably, its 12th season tonight. Meredith gets new roommates, April returns from combat, Bailey fights to be the chief of surgery, and two young patients teach the doctors a lesson about bullying. In other words: It’s business as usual for a series that refuses to let a little thing like the death of its romantic male lead slow it down.
Scandal (ABC, 9 p.m.): Then Scandal returns for its far more manageable fifth season premiere. Gwen Ihnat is covering the show this year, and she’s preemptively annoyed that the TV Guide description promises “bliss” between a newly reunited Olivia and Fitz (no one wants that, Scandal). On the plus side, a visiting queen enlists Olivia’s help, which sounds fun. And, hey, since Joshua Alston gave the show’s fourth season finale an “F” there’s really nowhere to go but up.
How To Get Away With Murder (ABC, 10 p.m.): And finally, fresh off her historic Emmy win, Viola Davis returns as Annalise Keating in HTGAWM’s second season premiere. Annalise and Frank try to figure out who killed Rebecca while Annalise takes on the case of a brother and sister accused of murdering their parents. It all sounds very murder-y and Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya wouldn’t have it any other way.
Player (NBC, 10 p.m.): Wesley Snipes stars in NBC’s latest attempt to recapture the ineffable magic that made The Blacklist such a hit. The erstwhile Blade plays the “pit boss” at a Vegas gambling ring for the mega-rich, which lets them bet on whether criminal activity can be prevented by a “player” (Strike Back’s Philip Winchester). Although Joshua Alston thinks Snipes excels in his role, he calls the show “limp” in his pre-air review.
Documentary Now! (IFC, 10 p.m.): Documentary Now! reaches it first season finale with a two-parter that airs a half hour earlier than usual. So far every episode this season has earned either an A or an A- from Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya. Assuming the show’s look at the rise and fall of a seminal 1970s soft rock band is up to snuff (and it probably is if Fred Armisen and Bill Hader are releasing a real album based on this episode), we feel fairly confident we can call this first season a success.
Steven Universe (Cartoon Network, 5:30 p.m.)
Review (Comedy Central, 10 p.m.)
Married (FX, 10 p.m.) *NEW TIME SLOT*
Be sure to check out our pre-air reviews of Heroes Reborn and The Player, written by two of our esteemed Josh(ua)s. First Josh Modell writes:
As was always the case with Heroes, there’s a little bit too much going on at any one time [in Heroes Reborn]—a few too many characters, powers, and storylines to keep track of. But that’s a small quibble with a story and vibe that’s this strong so far. Maybe this run will be powerful enough to go back in time and erase season four entirely; these three episodes have already gone a long way toward that.
Elsewhere, Joshua Alston notes:
The Player could spark the Wesley Snipes renaissance, but it won’t be because of the show itself. It will be because Snipes excels in the role, effectively reinventing himself as the next James Spader, a name actor hamming it up in television roles that would seem beneath his abilities if he wasn’t having such a good time playing them.
Then going live at 10 a.m., we have a brand new TV Club Questionnaire with You’re The Worst’s Chris Geere.
Live From Lincoln Center (PBS, 8 p.m.): Lincoln Center broadcasts free world-class concerts live, which is pretty incredible, at least for classical music fans. Pianist Lang Lang joins the New York Philharmonic for its opening gala. The evening’s selections include Grieg’s Piano Concerto and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7.
Project Runway (Lifetime, 9 p.m.): Your What’s On Tonight correspondent couldn’t add this show to the list fast enough when she saw tonight’s episode is called “Broadway Or Bust.” The designers are asked to create a look based on the musical Finding Neverland, because Harvey Weinstein won’t let a little thing like a Tony Awards shut-out stop him from shoving his show down everyone’s throats.
Fashionably Late With Rachel Zoe (Lifetime, 10:30 p.m.): The incomparable hot mess/reality TV personality Rachel Zoe returns to TV with a half-hour talk show centered on fashion and culture. No doubt it will be bananas.
Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves (BBC America, 8 p.m.): Watch this movie not because it’s good, but because it makes the jokes in Robin Hood: Men In Tights funnier.
The Marriage-Go-Round (TCM, 8 p.m.): Not only does this 1960 Susan Wayward/James Mason/Julie Newmar sex comedy have a pretty incredible pun in its title, its plot description reads: “A professor is whirled into the path of a blonde.” If that doesn’t make you want to tune in, we don’t know what will!
Thursday Night Football: Redskins at Giants (CBS, 8:25 p.m.): It’s 2015 and there’s still a professional football team called “The Redskins.” Well done America.
Black-ish: Black-ish pulls a DeGrassi and “goes there” in its second season premiere. When Jack says the n-word during an elementary school performance of “Gold Digger,” Dre and Bow have to figure out how to respond. Good thing Black-ish gave LaToya Ferguson something easy to work with in the first review of her new Black-ish beat.