Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Tuesday, September 22. All times are Eastern.
The Muppets (ABC, 8 p.m.): So, hmm. The Muppets are back on primetime television, which is pretty much always a good thing. And their new show is a behind-the-scenes workplace comedy about putting on a TV show, which really is the natural extension of the show business gags that have been the Muppets’ lifeblood for decades. But … this is apparently meant to be an “adult” take on the Muppets, which … huh. Not sure what we think about all that. For his part, Erik Adams has seen the first few episodes, and he’s here to say the whole “adult” thing is at least a little overhyped, and these really are basically the same old Muppets, just a little rougher around the edges. We guess we’ll all just have to find out together, and Dan Caffrey is on hand to guide us through for regular coverage.
Scream Queens (Fox, 8 p.m.): So, Ryan Murphy is apparently now claiming he’s invented comedy horror with this show, which beyond being obviously, factually inaccurate—Ash Vs. The Evil Dead is debuting in a month, for goodness’ sake—does kind of suggest Murphy has never actually watched American Horror Story, because what the hell is that show if not comedy horror? (Or, perhaps phrased slightly more accurately, what kind of show has Dylan McDermott thought he’s been making if not a comedy horror?) Anyway, Joshua Alston has pre-air thoughts, and it’s all about what you’d expect. LaToya Ferguson just hopes weekly reviews will help her get over the traumatic experience of watching MTV’s Scream.
Fresh Off The Boat (ABC, 8:30 p.m.): The season two premiere sees an amusement park trip and a lost baby tooth. Shelby Fero remembers a time when network sitcoms could get both those taken care of with a single throwaway gag. Ah, 1998. What a time to be alive.
The Bastard Executioner (FX, 10 p.m.) is listed as running until 11:16 tonight, so it’s overrunning by a little more than a quarter-hour. Kyle Fowle is so, so glad to see Kurt Sutter hasn’t missed a beat since Sons Of Anarchy.
Gorongosa Park: Rebirth Of Paradise (PBS, 8 p.m.): This two-hour special promises what are sure to be breathtaking vistas of Mozambique’s Gorongosa National Park, but there’s also an exploration of lion reproduction (or lack thereof), an examination of charging elephants, and an attack by rebel soldiers. It’s a busy day at the park, is what we’re saying.
NCIS: New Orleans (CBS, 9 p.m.): “In the Season 2 premiere, a military convoy is bombed on a bridge, and the team plan an undercover operation to retrieve a stolen missile in order to thwart an attack on a U.S. Naval ship.” This show is still supposed to be about, like, military police, right? Oh, whatever, as long as Scott Bakula is happy, we’re happy. We just want Scott Bakula to be happy, dammit! (We also want you to read Will Harris’ interview with original flavor NCIS star Paula Perrette, but again we’d consider Scott Bakula’s happiness our foremost priority.)
On Two Fronts: Latinos & Vietnam (PBS, 10 p.m.): In what we’re going to go ahead and assume is a tough but rewarding watch, this documentary examines the lives of two Latino siblings’ experiences during the Vietnam War, as the brother spent eight years as a P.O.W. and the sister became a major anti-war protestor. Again, guessing this won’t be a laugh riot, but it’s probably excellent.
Limitless (CBS, 10 p.m.): And so the Bradley Cooper-fication of CBS begins, as his 2011 brain thriller gets repurposes into an ongoing procedural series, with Cooper’s original NZT-enhanced genius showing up to wish the new guy luck. We look forward to said new guy suggesting he and Cooper’s character should hang out, with Cooper choosing just the right smirk to let the guy down gently while leaving zero doubt that, nah, that’s never going to happen.
Parenthood (Flix, 8 p.m.): Speaking of TV/movie team-ups, we’d like to officially demand the crossover mega-event we’ve all been waiting for: Parenthood: Days Of Future Past, in which the original universe, Steven Martin-led Buckman clan teams up with the Peter Krause-led Bravermans in a last-ditch effort to save the universe from utter destruction. Or possibly deal with upper middle class ennui. Both are important things to deal with!
Terminator Salvation (AMC, 10:30 p.m.): Look, this might have been the movie that ruined Christian Bale and Shane Hurlbut’s previously ironclad professional relationship, but we defy anyone to look at the finished product and say it wasn’t worth it.
MLB Baseball: Yankees at Blue Jays (ESPN, 7 p.m.): The Blue Jays are pretty much mortal locks to end baseball’s longest active postseason drought and bring some playoff baseball back to Canada, and they’re looking to extend their lead against the Yankees to avoid the brilliant madness of the wild card game. The Yankees, for their part, still have an outside shot of regaining the division lead, but mostly they just want to keep hold of their right to play host for said cauldron of lunacy that is the wild card game—which we honestly love, because there really is no more delightfully cruel way to punish a team for not winning its division than by making its entire season come down to a glorified coin flip. That’s a kind of evil we can get behind!
WWE Monday Night Raw: Admit it, you’d quite like to fall asleep in wrestling’s arms. It’s okay, wrestling doesn’t mind.