TV column for Saturday, July 14


TONIGHT'S MUST-SEE:
“Battle of the Sexes” (2017), 8-10 p.m., HBO; and/or “Truth and
Lies: The Family Manson,” 9-11 p.m., ABC.

It's time to sample
pieces of American history – one dark and brutal, the other
surprisingly funny. The brutality involved the 1969 murders by
Charles Manson's followers; this is an ABC News special that debuted
last year. And the fun is from the 1973 tennis match, with Bobby
Riggs and Billy Jean King.

As “Battle”
tells it, Riggs (Steve Carell) was an amiable con man. Past his
prime, he insisted he could defeat any woman. King (Emma Stone)
resisted until Riggs' taunts went too far. A huge ABC audience
watched her win decisively. The story gets a bright, fun re-telling
here.

TONIGHT'S MIGHT-SEE:
:Mamma Mia” (2008), 8:30-11 p.m., NBC.

In a late switch,
NBC has put a “Will& Grace” rerun at 8 p.m., followed by this
movie ... six days before its sequel reaches theaters.

The original is
mostly cheery, with a bright island setting, a likable cast and all
those ABBA songs. Its one flaw: In a world filled with great voices,
the movie settled for less. Meryl Streep is a fine singer; others
range from adequate to not.

TODAY'S ALTERNATIVE:
“Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone” (2001) and more, 7:30
a.m., Syfy and USA.

After years of
marathons on Freeform, Harry Potter has moved to Syfy ... promptly
getting another marathon. His first two films aired Friday night and
repeat at 7:30 and 10:52 a.m. today.

Then comes the
switch from the light touch of director Chris Columbus to the darker
tone of Alfonso Cuaron for the third film at 2:23 p.m. Mike Newell
made the fourth at 5 p.m. and David Yates did the rest. The fifth
airs at 8 p.m. today ... followed by a repeat of the third at 10:41
p.m. Sunday repeats the fourth and fifth films at 8 and 11:21 a.m.,
then wraps up the mega-series at 2:18, 5:18 and 8 p.m.

TONIGHT'S
ALTERNATIVE: “Operation Thai Cave Rescue,” 10 p.m., Science.

If you missed this
quick-turnaround special Friday on Discovery, you can catch a rerun
tonight.

The 12 soccer
players, ages 14 to 16, and their assistant coach were trapped in a
flooded Thailand cave for almost 18 days. This special traces the
problems faced by the boys and by the Thai SEAL rescuers; it
interviews medical, mental and diving experts.

Other choices
include:

“Hotel
Transylvania” (2012), 5 p.m., FX. This fun animated movie is
followed by its sequel (2015) at 7 p.m.; then they repeat at 9 and
11.

Baseball, 7 p.m. ET,
Fox. Three days before it has the All-Star game, Fox has three games,
varying by region. Sports fans will also find NASCAR (7:30 p.m. ET,
NBC), boxing (7 p.m., ESPN) and mixed martial arts (7:30 p.m., Fox
Sports1 and 8 p.m.. Paramount, which has kickboxing at 10:15).

“America's
Funniest Home Videos,” 8 p.m., ABC. This rerun has kids reacting to
scary Halloween decorations ... and a monkey at the zoo, jealous
while watching a couple kiss. That's odd, because we've always been
jealous of zoo monkeys, what with all the climbing and swinging and
such.

“Me, Myself &
I,” 8 and 8:30 p.m., CBS. It's time for the Thanksgiving episode.
No, not a rerun – the first showing of an episode that would have
been better eight months ago; this has been on the shelf for a while.
In the first episode, mid-life Alex (Bobby Moynihan) has a blind date
on the holiday. In the second, his new girlfriend invests in his
invention ... which soon affects their dating life

“Living
Biblically,” 9 and 9:30 p.m., CBS. Following the Scriptures can be
tough sometimes. Chip is excited to be nominated for a journalism
award ... but is reminded that he's not supposed to covet. In the
second episode, he tries to convince his colleagues to help rebuild a
house for charity.

“Saturday Night
Live,” 11:29 p.m., NBC Bill Hader hosts this rerun, with music
from Arcade Fire.