TV column for Tuesday, Sept.4


TONIGHT'S MUST-SEE: “MasterChef,” 9
p.m., Fox.

Six days before the finale, three
fascinating amateur chefs remain.

Christine Ha, 32, a grad student in
Houston, is blind. Joshua Marks, 24, an Army contracts specialist in
Mississippi, stands seven feet tall. Becky Reams, 26, is a food
photographer from Kansas.

Last week, Ha and Reams won the team
competition – their fourth and fifth wins, respectively. Marks, who
has won only once, surivived the face-off with Frank Mirando. Now
they must prepare something with two legs – chicken, lamb or frog.

TONIGHT'S SHOULD-SEE: Democratic
Convention, all night.

This is a three-day convention, which
is what the Republicans ended up as, because of the storm.

Again, the big networks converge with
their morning shows, their evening newscasts and ABC's “Nightline”;
they'll skip prime time, however, until 10 p.m.ET, when San Antonio
Mayor Julian Castro gives the keynote address. For more, catch PBS
(starting at 8 p.m. ET) or cable.

TONIGHT'S ALTERNATIVE: “Covert
Affairs,10:01 p.m., USA.

Love, death and duty entwine harshly
for Annie (Piper Perabo) in the start of a taut two-parter.

Her lover, Simon Fischer, is the prime
suspect in murdering Jai. Now she hopes to bring him in unharmed.
That won't be easy, as schemes bounce around the CIA headquarters
involving Arthur (Peter Gallagher), newcomer Lena (Sarah Clarke) and
more. This hour ends with a jolt and a cliffhanger.

TONIGHT'S ALTERNATIVE II: “Flipping
Out” season-opener, 9 p.m., Bravo.

Jeff Lewis may be one of TV's ultimate
villains. Tonight he mocks his employees – including one who needs
the job to keep a trust fund – and berates his boyfriend; he also
reads E-mails while driving.

That's under the pressure of a
year-long remodeling of his dream house. Fortunately, Jenni Pulos is
back; she can fire back at him, especially now that she's happy in
her new engagement to Jonathan Tassos Nassos. “So very Greek,”
she points out approvingly, “ and a doctor.”.

Other choices include:

– “Live with Kelly and ….,” 9
a.m. in most markets (check local listings). It was nine-plus months
ago that Regis Phillbin left the show and the search for a
replacement began. Now Kelly Ripa finally introduces her new co-host.

– “Hell's Kitchen,” 8 p.m., Fox.
Gordon Ramsay picks the final two and gets them started on their last
project, a full dinner service. In the finale Monday, it will be
judged by top chefs.

– “NCIS,” 8 p.m., CBS. In a
rerun, a fire on a Navy ship reveals a bigger crisis.

– “NCIS: Los Angles,” 9 p.m.,
CBS. The team digs into the underground of Libyan revolutionaries.

– “Face Off,” 9 p.m. Syfy. As the
youngest contestant, Alana Schirro, now 21, has scrambled. In last
week's episode (rerunning at 8 p.m.), she burned herself and called
herself “very scatterbrained”; this time, she gets a cut that
requires seven stitches. It's all part of a colorful day creating
dragon designs.

– “Don't Trust the B in Apartment
23,” 9:30, ABC. June was doing fine until she got a wedding
invitation sent to her and her ex-fiance. Then Chloe goes to extrems
to comfort her.