Jewel as June Carter Cash: a must see
This exceptional TV movie tells the story of country singer June Carter Cash (Jewel), from her childhood stardom with the Carter Family through her...
The new 'Arrested Development' is here
We all mourn the TV masterpieces cut off in their prime — shows like My So-Called Life and Freaks and Geeks, which could have offered so much more pleasure...
Primal Screen: 'American Masters'
(8pm Mon, PBS) When you tune into an American Masters program about Mel Brooks, you know it’s going to be fun. As a Borscht Belt entertainer, TV comedy writer...
Primal Screen: 'North America'
(8pm Sun, Discovery) This seven-part nature documentary takes us on a stunning tour of the continent, gliding from the Canadian tundra to the Utah desert to...
Primal Screen: 'Billboard Music Awards'
(7pm Sun, ABC) The Billboard Music Awards prides itself on having something for everyone, with nods to R&B, rap, country and Billboard’s other charts...
Primal Screen: 'Shark Tank'
(8pm Fri, ABC) In the season finale, the panel of five self-made millionaires hears intriguing pitches from budding business people. A woman named Val...
Primal Screen: 'The Goodwin Games'
(7:30pm Mon, Fox) In Fox’s promising new sitcom, three estranged siblings reunite after their father (Beau Bridges) dies, only to learn that he...
‘'Mad Men' enters the Summer of Love
Our last visit to the NYC advertising world was haunted by phantoms. The season five finale found Madison Avenue mystery man Don Draper (Jon Hamm) hallucinating...
'Banshee' season finale will thrill you
If you’ve been following Banshee since January, the season finale will not let you down. TV genius Alan Ball (Six Feet Under, True Blood) executive-produces...
'The Americans': Spies in the suburbs
We’ve seen many dramas about married couples living a lie in the suburbs, with tensions cracking the cheery façade. The lie in The Americans, however, is bigger than most. Philip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth (Keri Russell) are...
Lena Dunham strikes again
Part of me would love to be 26-year-old Lena Dunham: widely hailed as a comic genius when her series Girls premiered on HBO last year. Another part of me wouldn’t want...
Joan Rivers heads the 'Fashion Police'
Along with Giuliana Rancic, Kelly Osbourne, and George Kotsiopoulos, Joan Rivers will call out the best and worst of celebrity frocks, naming...
'Project Nim': Part-human, part-chimp
This documentary tells the story of a chimpanzee who was raised like a child in a misbegotten 1970s science experiment, then cruelly sent...
'Magical Mystery Tour' vindicated
The Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour is widely regarded as a failure, but this documentary gives it an overdue reconsideration. The film interviews...
Life: The Romantic Comedy
The Mindy Project (8:30pm Tue, Fox). Dr. Mindy Lahiri (Mindy Kaling) has spent a lifetime looking for the perfect man, but she can’t find him.
J.J. Abrams' 'Revolution'
J.J. Abrams’ series plunges you into an alternate reality. Ben (Tim Guinee) hurries home to tell his wife (Elizabeth Mitchell), “It’s happening.”
Why 'The Next' is the new 'American Idol'
On Friends, Matthew Perry created one of the funniest TV characters of all time in the neurotic quipster Chandler Bing. Perry hasn’t clicked in any starring vehicle since...
A&E's 'Coma' delivers a hospital of horrors
Ridley and the late Tony Scott have produced an effectively creepy update of Coma, originally a 1977 novel and 1978 film. Lauren Ambrose is plucky and smart as...
Zombies at the Olympics?
I was put off by the militaristic strain in Beijing’s opening ceremony for the 2008 Olympics, complete with goose-stepping soldiers. But it didn’t dampen my enthusiasm for...
'True Blood': A vampire's conscience
TV series don’t get more wonderfully lurid than True Blood, in which vampires and humans coexist thanks to a new synthetic blood. This mass-produced product lets...
'American Idol' matters. No, seriously!
I used to be American Idol’s biggest fan, but by now most of us know it’s jumped the shark. After a string of bland winners — Kris Allen, Lee DeWyze...
Sherlock Holmes tackles the sexy dominatrix
Last year, Masterpiece Mystery’s “Sherlock” did Sherlock Holmes a favor by plunking him down in our own time. The contemporary setting revived the detective franchise...
Primal Screen: The Sinner-in-Chief
In 2008, American Experience presented a whitewashed portrait of President George H.W. Bush’s presidency, presumably to avoid Republican charges of liberal bias.
This is a new series that crosses Heart of Darkness with The Blair Witch Project, to good effect. Emmet Cole (Bruce Greenwood) was beloved for his TV nature series, in which...
Primal Screen: American idiots
Phil Ochs was a singer-guitarist at the heart of the 1960s protest-folk movement. “Phil Ochs: There But for Fortune” on American Masters (10 pm Monday, PBS) explores his...
'The Finder' delivers hero juice
If I had a dime for every pilot that failed at being simultaneously exciting, funny, sexy, and poignant, I’d be able to finance my own series. (Title: Teenage Mutant Ninja TV Critic.)
Upstairs, meet Downstairs
Masterpiece has worked hard to expand its range, but the success of Downtown Abbey —rave reviews, Emmy awards, high ratings — proves that people really just want to see another variation on...
Playing dress up
This new seriesis a wish-fulfillment fantasy for ordinary teen girls who think they just might wind up in the glamorous fashion industry one day.
Grifter vs. grifter
Leverage is Mission: Impossible with a sense of humor about itself. In every episode, Timothy Hutton’s gang of thieves and hackers pull off a difficult task to help some underdog.
The kids are all wrong
It’s hard to believe that Fox, the same network that premiered New Girl this fall, now gives us I Hate My Teenage Daughter. Where New Girl is a sophisticated take on the sitcom genre, I Hate My Teenage Daughter...
Kim Kardashian karries on
I got caught up in the excitement of Kim Kardashian’s whirlwind romance with basketball player Kris Humphries, which played out on Keeping Up With the Kardashians.
The horrible and the miserable
More than a decade after the disappointing Wild Man Blues, American Masters gives Woody Allen the documentary he deserves.
'Frasier' gets creepy
Despite its awesomeness, the comic spy series Chuck has been under threat of cancellation ever since it premiered in 2007, and NBC has finally decided to pull the plug after the current season.
Man vs. beast
Truth be told, the title American Hoggers didn’t fill me with anticipation for this new reality series. But it turns out to be a fascinating look at boar hunters in Texas, where the feral beasts are terrorizing landowners.