“Empire,” 9 p.m., Fox.
Like last week's
season-opener, this is relatively low on music and strong on societal
One issue involves
gun violence in Chicago; Jamal – who's been emotionally fragile
ever since Freda almost killed him – tries to take charge. Another
issue – a prevalent one – strikes his brother Andre in the final
minutes. In between, there are more stories ... including a slickly
handsome councilman (Taye Diggs), who instantly has Cookie's
attention; Lucious, who keeps trying to win her back, is not pleased.
II: “Code Black” season-opener, 10 p.m., CBS.
Just as cancellation
seemed imminent, “Code” hatched a drastic transformation. Gone
are Bonnie Somerville and Raza Jaffrey, whose doctors (Christa and
Neal) were at the show's core; getting more focus are three new
residents and two bosses:
Boris Kodjoe arrived
late last season, to lead the emergency room and operating room; Rob
Lowe arrives now as Col. Willis, embedded in this hospital because it
resembles a combat zone; soon, he's on a wild helicopter ride, trying
to save shark victims.
ALTERNATIVE: “Full Frontal with Samantha Bee,” 10:30 p.m., TBS;
or “Designated Survivor,” 10 p.m., ABC.
Tonight, we can take
our presidential politics in two ways – satirical or fictional. The
former is from Bee, whose show -- usually caustic, generally funny --
has received a Television Critics Association award and an Emmy
nomiation. This episode was pushed back two days, so she can eye the
And the fictional
side is from the season's best new show. Last week, a lowly cabinet
member (Kiefer Sutherland) was the”designated survivor,” hidden
away during the State of the Union address. A disaster struck and now
he's president, trying to run the country amid chaos and confusion.
8 p.m., Fox. Jason Derulo guests as a boxer. Riggs (Damon Wayans) and
Murtaugh go to his house to field a noise complaint; then guns are
fired, bringing them into a major case of gun-runners who have
advanced military technology.
p.m., CBS. A week into this generational battle, the young folks
lead. The “Millennials” tribe survived; the first ouster, from
the “Gen X” tribe, was Rachel Ako, 37, a recruiting director.
8:30 p.m., ABC. One of the best things about last week's debut was
Kenneth (Cedric Yarbrough), the truth-telling groundskeeper. Now
J.J., who has cerebral palsey, has chosen him as his caregiver and
his voice. That creates instant conflicts with J.J.'s intense mom
season-opener, 9 p.m., CBS. It's turnover time again, as the 12th
season starts. Shemar Moore has left; Thomas Gibson was fired –
anger issues, apparently – and will be gone by this season's fourth
episode. Paget Brewster returns to the show early this season and
Aisha Tyler becomes a regular. Adam Rodriguez (“CSI: Miami”)
joins the cast tonight, joining the search for an escaped killer.
9 p.m., ABC. Jay wants to impress the new neighbors and Manny wants
to impress an attractive girl who has radical views. Meanwhile,
Alex's mono changes life at her home. Also, Cam and Mitchell re-think
their own parenting, after hearing Lily insults her new friend.
9:31 p.m., ABC. When his daughter starts questioning her belief in
God, Dre looks for ideas from family members and co-workers. Also,
his brother-in-law moves in, creating problems.
p.m., TV Land. Liz juggles the requirements of her real age (early
40s) and what she pretends to be (mid-20s). Tonight, she sends her
daughter to college and ponders two handsome guys, one from each age
group; Sutton Foster, 41, fits the role neatly. The “Impastor”