“Custody,” 8-10:33 p.m., Lifetime; reruns at 12:02 a.m.
Here is a quiet gem,
a deep and intelligent story of good intentions and (at times) bad
results. It's not something we expect on TV – or from James Lapine.
On Broadway, he's written and directed musicals and comedies, getting
15 Tony nominations, three wins and a Pulitzer Prize.
But now he's written
and directed a dead-serious drama – a child-custody case in which
he lets us feel each person's agony ... some of it unrelated to the
case. These are deep characters, played by the best – Viola Davis,
Catalina Moreno, Tony Shalhoub, Hayden Panettiere, Ellen Burstyn and
II: “Saturday Night Live,” 11:29 p.m.. NBC.
Let's think of
tonight as a reunion of the movie “The Help” ... or a reunion of
Academy Award nights. It's a chance to see Viola Davis and Octavia
Spencer pretty much back-to-back.
In 2012, both women
had Oscar nominations for “The Help”; Spencer won. This year,
Davis won for “Fences”; Spencer was nominated for “Hidden
Figures.” Now we can see Davis being dead-serious – and perfect –
in “Custody” and then Spencer hosting “SNL,” with music from
Father John Misty.
ALTERNATIVE: “Planet Earth II,” 9 p.m. ET, BBC America, rerunning
You see some
surprising things in the jungle ... including dolphins. Really. River
dolphins, mostly blind in that dark setting, seem to frolic there.
Jungles cover 6
percent of the globe, narrator David Attenborough tells us, but have
half the plants and wildlife. Many thrive; some otters are the size
of men. And many are remarkable; we see a lizard that can soar 100
feet ... a gecko that virtually disappears ... and birds of paradise
with dazzling dances.
marathon, 1:55 p.m. to 4:37 a.m., TNT. Now the films have been
rearranged in the way the story unfolds. The prequel trilogy is at
1:55 p.m. (1999), 4:55 p.m. (2002) and 8 p.m. (2005). That lead into
the original film – now called “Star Wars: A New Hope” (1977)
-- at 11:06. “The Empire Strikes Back” (1980) is at 1:52 a.m..
with “Revenge of the Jedi” (1983) at 5 p.m. Sunday.
8-11 p.m., NBC. Here's a quick rerun of Wednesday's marathon,
involving all four shows. At 8 p.m., “Chicago Fire” fights a
blaze, with the “Chicago Med” people treating victims. Then
“Chicago P.D.” investigates at 9 p.m. and “Chicago Justice”
prosecutes at 10.
p.m., CBS. In France, a girl has been kidnapped from a train. Now her
parents fear she's been sold into human trafficking.
p.m. ET, ABC, with pre-game at 8. The Chicago Bulls host the Los
Boxing, 9 p.m. ET,
CBS. Two undefeated welterweight champions collide, with the winner
getting the unified title. Keith Thurman has the WBA title; Danny
Garcia has the WBC one.
“APB,” 9 p.m.,
Fox. In a rerun, a drone fails to find robbers, so Gideon turns to an
unlikely source to create some electric motorcyles.
Comedy,” 10 p.m. ET, CNN (barring breaking news). Remember that
cliche about the crying clown, the sad guy who makes us laugh? It's
sometimes true, people tell us here, using examples from the past –
Jonathan Winters, Richard Pryor, Robin Willians – and their own
lives. It's a good hour, preceded at 9 p.m. ET by an OK one viewing
comedy that springs from regular life.