TONIGHT'S MUST-SEE: “Defiance”
debut, 9-11 p.m., Syfy.
Some 33 years ago, aliens invaded and
chaos began. Now an ex-Marine travels and scavenges, joined by an
angry alien whom he rescued long ago and considers his daughter.
They reach Defiance (formerly St.
Louis), where races have found peace … almost. Two powerful
families – one alien, one Earthling – feud and tougher forces
invade. In its mid-section, “Defiance” is sort of a too-grimy
cowboy film. At the start and finish, however, it's great sci-fi.
TONIGHT'S MIGHT-SEE: “Hawaii Five-0,”
9 p.m., CBS.
Two stories of North Korean missions
entwine. One, a flashback, is a prequel to the show's pilot film; the
other is a current story involving the retrieval of a body.
We'll have to overlook the fact that
both missions strain plausibility and the second is relatively
pointless. In both, we get lots of slam-bang adventure, alongside
TONIGHT'S ALTERNATIVE: “Top of the
Lake” conclusion, 9-11 p.m., Sundance.
At times, this five-week, seven-hour
mini-series has been as slow and quiet as its New Zealand setting. At
its core, however, is a darkly compelling story.
A 12-year-old won't say (or doesn't
know) how she got pregnant. Robin (Elisabeth Moss), a cop, suspects
the girl's father … who is also the father of Robin's lover.
After briefly visiting a women's
retreat, the girl is hiding on an island. Tonight, good and bad
forces rush to find her first. There are some gripping moments and then a
strong, surprise ending.
Other choices include:
– “The '80s,” 7-11 p.m., National
Geographic, re-running, 11 p.m. to 3 a.m.. First we get a rerun of
Sunday's well-crafted opener; which starts with the “miracle on
ice” hockey game. The mid-section of this three-night film starts
at 9, watching new ideas soar (cell phones) or crash (New Coke). It
follows the rise of Madonna, “Dynasty,” Wall Street and a
– “The Voice,” 8-10:01 p.m., NBC.
The auditions are finished now and “battle rounds” begin.
-- "Dancing With the Stars," 8-10:01 p.m., ABC. Last week, Lisa Vanderpump was the third person out. That leaves Victor Ortiz (who was in the bottom two), D.L. Hughley and Andy Dick among the survivors, despite some misadventures.
– “Bones,” 8 p.m., Fox. Alongside
an OK mystery (the victim doubled as stockbroker and stripper), Booth
meets the mom who abandoned him. That's mostly lame, but gets better
in the final minutes.
– “The Following,” 9 p.m., Fox.
Now Sheriff Nelson is brought into the search for Joe Carroll. That's
a problem, because Nelson is actually the underling Carroll calls
– “Dallas” season-finale, 9-11
p.m., TNT. John Ross is intent on learning who killed his dad, the
crafty J.R. Ewing. There's more to it, though; Bobby says his brother
J.R. had a scheme to stop his enemies. Can the feuding Ewings band
together to fulfill the plan and learn who killed J.R.?
– “Mike & Molly,” 9:30 p.m.,
CBS. For their birthdays, some people expect the impossible. Mike
wants his wife and his sarcastic mother to get along.
– “Independent Lens,” 10 p.m.,
PBS (check local listings). Created in 1941 (by a guy who also helped
invent the lie detector), Wonder Woman was as strong as the
comic-book guys; she was tied up a lot, but promptly broke free. The
character became weaker and blander for a time, then boomed back. Her
story is the backdrop of a richly illustrated view of what's now a
Xena-Buffy-Bionic Woman landscape.
-- "Revolution," 10:01 p.m., NBC. Rachel starts a daring attempt to restore power globally.