TONIGHT'S MUST-SEE: “30 Rock”
season-opener, 8 p.m., NBC.
In a year when female-driven comedy has
thrived, “30 Rock” has been on the shelf. For five straight
years, it has drawn an Emmy nomination for best comedy series,
winning three times; now – after pausing for Tina Fey's maternity
leave – the sixth season begins.
Jenna gets attention as the hateful
judge on “America's Kidz Got Singing”; Tracy is jealous of that,
but can't seem to aggravate Liz. Also, Kenneth awaits the Rapture.
TONIGHT'S MUST-SEE II: “The Finder”
debut, 9 p.m., Fox.
Walter (Geoff Stults) is a former
military hero with an odd mind and a gift for finding people and
things. From his distant outpost – the End of the Earth bar in
Florida – he works with a massive colleague, a beautiful cop and a
teen orphan girl who's also a clever thief.
This show was created by the people who
do “Bones,” which is resting because of Emily Deschanel's
pregnancy leave. Quirkier – even veering near the supernatural –
it gives us fun characters; after a so-so start (retrieving John
Fogerty's guitar), it has an interesting case tonight.
TONIGHT'S ALTERNATIVE: “Rob” debut,
8:31 p.m., CBS.
After a brief romance and a Las Vegas
wedding, Rob and Maggie are meeting her relatives. “Don't tell them
your age,” she says. “Or your height.”
Those are issues. He's played by Rob
Schneider, 48 and 5-foot-7; she's a Mexican-American beauty, played
by Claudia Bassols, 32 and 5-foot-10. Now he'll meet her dad (Cheech
Marin) and the others.
This is a middle-of-the road comedy,
but moderately funny. Schneider – who married a Hispanic woman this
year – warmly finds the humor in opposite worlds.
Other choices include:
– “Bones,” 8 p.m., Fox. Next
week, this show starts its hiatus. First, Booth and Brennan look for
a home to share when the baby is born; also, a tech-savvy killer
leaves a clue in blood.
– “The Big Bang Theory,” 8 p.m.,
CBS. When Sheldon fails to admire Amy's accomplishment, Penny tries
to teach him to be a better boyfriend.
– “Independent Lens,” 9-11 p.m.,
PBS (check local listings). Sprawling over three Thursdays, “Have
You Heard From Johannesburg” is a five-hour documentary following
the anti-apartheid movement.
– “Person of Interest,” 9 p.m.,
CBS. Duties get switched this week: Reese (Jim Caviezel), recovering
from a shooting, is working the computer; Finch (Michael Emerson) is
in the field. And Carter (Taraji Henson) finally sees a case
– “Up All Night,” 9:30 p.m., NBC.
Jason Lee (“My Name is Earl”) returns, as the show move from
Wednesdays. He plays the neighbor who's dating Maya. This is a New
Year's Eve story, with Reagan (Christina Applegate) obsessing on
winning in game night.
– “The Firm,” 10 p.m., NBC. In
Sunday's convoluted movie, we met Mitch, a decent lawyer with a pile
of troubles. He spent a decade in witness protection, after fingering
a mobster; now the mobster's dead and he doesn't know the guy's son
wants revenge. Also, he's been lured into a big-deal law firm, for
dark reasons we don't know. Tonight, he defends a partner's son,
charged with murder.
– “The Mentalist,” 10 p.m., CBS.
When a disliked divorce attorney is killed, there are plenty of