TONIGHT'S MUST-SEE: “Parks and
Recreation,” 8:30 p.m., NBC.
In its early, sleepy days, “Parks”
didn't push hard for for laughs. Now it has a swirl of comic energy.
There's Tom (Aziz Ansari), with his
company – cool office, crisp logo, great image … no conceivable
way to make money. There's Chris (Rob Lowe), getting way too serious
about a health video.
And there's Ron (Nick Offerman), jolted
by his three Tammys – two ex-wives (Patricia Clarkson and, briefly,
Megan Mullally, Offerman's real-life wife) and his mom. The results
are sometimes hilarious.
TONIGHT'S MIGHT-SEE: “How To Be a
Gentleman” debut, 8:31 p.m., CBS.
Alan (David Hornsby) is precise and
proper, writing a column about being a gentleman. Then his magazine
is sold and he's supposed to right about the rougher side of life.
He ends up at a gym – and with the
guy (Kevin Dillon) who once bullied him. The result, reflecting our
overcivilized world, is moderately funny; it's boosted by good
support from Dave Foley, as Alan's boss.
TONIGHT'S ALTERNATIVE: “The Latino
List,” 8 p.m., HBO.
The technique is basic – 16 people
simply discussing their lives. But the people are compelling.
Some grew up amid tough times. A maid's
daughter, Consuelo Castillo Kickbusch, became an Army lieutenant
colonel; a topless dancer's son, Armando Perez, became rap star
Others showed drive. Eva Longoria, who
grew up comfortably, lied about her age and worked at 13; Jose
Hernandez – once in charge of holding the TV antenna so his family
could see the moon landing – applied 20 times to NASA, before
becoming an astronaut. These are great stories, beautifully told.
Other choices include:
– “The Big Bang Theory,” 8 p.m.,
CBS. This terrific show thrives on mismatches. Tonight, Leonard goes
to a wedding with Sheldon's odd friend Amy; Howard and Bernadette
spend the weekend with his mother, the one who was hospitalized when
she learned they're engaged.
– “Grey's Anatomy,” 9 p.m., ABC.
Last week's terrific season-opener leaves huge aftershocks, The Chief
took the blame for tampering, letting Meredith get her job back;
also, Owen accepted the fact that Cristina doesn't want children.
Tonight, the Chief makes another key decision, April continues to
struggle as chief resident and the fifth-year residents have their
first solo surgeries.
– “The Mentalist,” 10 p.m., CBS.
For Patrick Jane, the good news is that he's out of prison and back
at work. The bad: Jane Lisbon is being investigated and the others in
his team have been scattered
– Private Practice, 10:02 p.m., ABC.
Pete (Tim Daly) has a heart attack, amid chaos. Addison is with her
mystery man (Benjamin Bratt), her sister Amelia struggles with
alcoholism and Violet is missing.
– “It's Always Sunny in
Philadelphia,” 10 p.m., FX. After a great Jersey episode last week,
“Sunny” retreats to a so-so beauty-pageant one. It's erratic, but
has a few good moments during the pageant.
– “Archer,” 10:30 p.m., FX.
Sterling Archer's career as a pirate king did not go well. (He forgot
to do any pirating.) Now he's trying to escape, in a fairly good
finish to the strong, three-part season-opener.