(Here's theNov. 12 TV column, a tad out of order; Nov, 13 is right below this.)
“Mom,” 9:01 p.m., CBS.
With sharp writing
and perfect performances, “Mom” had the rare ability to make even
bad news seem funny. Losing a job ... losing out on a custody weekend
with your son ... wrapping up a court-ordered penalty? All of that is
faced with wit and fun.
But is it funny to
meet someone who's been broken by addiction and abuse? Surprisingly,
yes. Christy and her mom attempt to seem casual, while hiding their
valuables. It's a great scene in a dandy episode.
“2 Broke Girls” season-opener, 9:30 p.m., CBS.
It's been an odd
roller-coaster for this comedy. After four years of not-bad ratings
on Mondays, it was put on the shelf (along with “Mike &
Molly”), slated as a mid-season replacement. Then the return came
quicker – and in a much better timeslot -- than anyone had
realized that the so-so “Angel From Hell” -- slated for tonight –
would be the weak link in a great comedy night. “Angel” was
delayed to February, replaced by “Broke”: The government has
plans to bulldoze Han's diner and Max and Caroline's cupcake window;
people converge on City Hall.
ALTERNATIVE: “Project Runway Junior” debut, 9 p.m., Lifetime,
rerunning at 10:02.
Right now, kids are
overrunning our reality shows. Last Friday, Fox started its
“MasterChef Junior” season; now this “Runway” variation has a
dozen designers, ages 13 to 17.
Tim Gunn will be the
grown-up in charge, alongside model Hannah Davis. The judges are
Kelly Osbourne, Aya Kana (editor of Cosmopolitan and Seventeen) and
Christian Siriano, who has proven young people can design. He was 22
when he won “Runway” (the real one) in 2006.
(2004) and “The Lucky One” (2012), 6 and 9 p.m., ABC Family. All
films based on Nicholas Sparks films were clearly not created equal.
“Notebook” is beautifully nuanced and deeply moving; “Lucky
One” leaves viewers shouting “Just tell her” and “I told you
8 p.m., ABC. There's heavy emotional pressure, as the team works on a
longtime patient. Meanwhile, Arizona is ready to date again; Bailey
wants Ben to throw out their new roommate.
“The Big Bang
Theory,” 8 p.m., CBS. Sheldon may be ready to sample the dating
“Life in Pieces,”
8:31 p.m., CBS. After several great episodes, this show had a lame
one last week. We'll hope it rebounds tonight, as baby Lark gets much
of the focus: Her parents try to hire a nanny; her grandfather makes
a wooden puppet that everyone seems to like ... except Lark.
p.m., ABC. As the president negotiates a peace deal, Olivia learns
9 p.m., NBC. Both sides make progress in finding Liz, while Tom has a
setback in his effort to exonerate her.
“VH1 Big Music in
2015,” 9-11 p.m., VH1. Viewers have already been voting (by Twitter
and Instagram) for the VH1 Artist of the Year. We'll learn the winner
at the end of this concert; first, here's music by the nominated
groups (Hozier, X Ambassadors) and individuals – James Bay, George
Ezra, Ella Henderson, Tori Kelly, Elle King, Miguel, Rachel Platter
and Nate Ruess.
p.m., CBS. In a role that requires perhaps 12 per cent of his immense
talent, John Noble (“Fringe”) plays Sherlock's unflinching dad
Morland. We met him briefly at the end of last week's season-opener,
when he offered to use his influence to get Sherlock's job back. The
Morland portions tonight are stiff and flat, but the mystery –
murder at a research lab – is a good one.