“Astronaut Wives Club” debut, 8 p.m., ABC.
In the 1960s, NASA
nurtured its image: The astronauts were sturdy, their wives were
diligent, all were generic. In truth, this series says, the wives
ranged from shy, stuttering Annie Glenn to Rene Carpenter, a flashy
blonde who would become a post-divorce feminist and media star.
Trudy Cooper was a
pilot who had already left her husband once. Louise Shepard, the
centtral character here, was steel-willed, overlooking infidelity and
staying married for 53 years. They're a deep and varied bunch, part
of a fairly solid start to a promising series.
: “Mistresses” season-opener, 9 and 10 p.m., ABC.
In one night, we can
see a show switch identities. The first hour is overwrought soap
opera, as usual. Jos has walked out on her wedding, to lust with her
sister Savi's ex-husband. Savi has over-reacted wildly. Karen has a
dictor's-office scene that's horribly written and played.
Then, somehow, the
second hour gets looser and lighter. It adds key regulars – one
(Jennifer Esposito) is rich and vengeful; the other is a hapless
soul, trying to watch his sister's son. Meanwhile, Jos – tragic and
teary the first hour – returns to be frantic and funny, fitting the
show's new tone.
ALTERNATIVE: “Complications,” 9-11 p.m., USA.
For years, USA
thrived on a basic formula – blue-sky adventures, most of them
wrapping up a story each hour. Now it tries (with partial success)
something much more complex.
Dr. John Ellis
(Jason O'Mara) is an emergency-room doctor, unsure about his life.
Then he steps in to save someone after a shooting. Soon, he's pulled
into gang warfare and tangled ethical dilemmas.
Golf, 8 p.m. ET,
Fox. Halfway through its 10-week run, “Wayward Pines” takes a
week off so the U.S. Open can start its primetime push.
“Big Bang Theory,”
8 p.m., CBS. On one level, this is a typically funny rerun; the
comic-book store is re-opening, Penny fumes at Amy, the guys say
they've seen Nathan Fillion, star of the old “Firefly” show. On
the other, Howard gets a jolting call, a reminder that this show has
a solid, human core.
“The Odd Couple,”
8:31 p.m., CBS. At a wedding, the guys have opposite goals in this
rerun. Oscar wants to link with an old flame; Felix hopes to convince
his ex-wife (Christine Woods) he's changed.
p.m., NBC. Last week ended with Hodiak (David Duchovney) and his
ex-girlfriend retrieving her 16-year-old daughter from Charlie
Manson's turf. That still leaves the question of whether she'll stay:
Tonight ends with some fiercely overwrought moments; before that, it
adds black activists who are – like almost everyone in this
one-note mini-series – crabby and dull-witted.
9 p.m., CNN. This series debuted last week with a look at 1970s TV;
it was quick and slick and not too deep. Not to worry: The previous
series (“The Sixties”) also opened with a fairly thin porttrait
of television, then got much better. Tonight's hour views Richard
Nixon's Watergate woes.
p.m., CBS. Here's a rerun of the episode that introduced Sara Rue as
the new (and wealthier) girlriend of Christy's ex-husband. Ed Asner
guests as the neighbor.
10:01 p.m., CBS. The murder of a brilliant bio-engineer seems linked
to a a drug cartel. Also in this rerun, Sherlock and Watson are
reluctant to share their secrets.