(This is the Friday, Feb. 17 column, a tad out of order. For Saturday one, scroll down one more.)
By Mike Hughes
“Emerald City,” 9 p.m., NBC.
The early episodes
were way too thick and tangled, twisting the “Wizard of Oz” story
beyond recognition. But now, in the eighth of 10 episodes, things are
starting to make sense.
We learn more about
Tip, who seemed to transform from boy to girl. And about Lucas,
Dorothy's lover. In visually splendid scenes, Dorothy, Lucas and
young Sylvie are in the all-white world of Glinda (Joely Richardson).
The story's weak point involves the relationship between Jack and
Queen Ev ... but that may change: In tonight's final minures, the
Wizard gallops in with his anti-witch army.
“Hawaii Five-0,” 9 p.m., CBS.
Here's the third
confrontation with Dr. Madison Gray, the beautiful and cunning serial
killer, played by former “Law & Order” co-star Elizabeth
This time, she
stumbles into the police office, claiming to hava amnesia. Also,
she's covered with what seems to be the blood of Alicia Brown (Claire
ALTERNATIVE: Grammy Awards, 8-11:30 p.m., Pop.
Why watch a rerun of
an award show from five days ago? Because it was one of the season's
greatest shows, cleverly hosted by James Corden and filled with
brilliant moments. There were two numbers by Adele, two by Bruno
Mars, splendid productions with Beyonce, Katy Perry and Lady Gaga.
Even when their were
miscues – Adele stopped a song and started over, Metallica's
microphone didn't work for half a song – things were fine. This is
what TV should be – live, raw and ambitious.
ALTERNATIVE II: Basketball or ballet.
skilled peopple fill our TV sets – doing things for specialized
tastes. On PBS (9 p.m.), “Great Performances” spends the next two
Fridays in Paris, viewing the New York City Ballet. Each night has
portions of two George Balanchine ballets, with the music of French
For opposite tastes,
this is the start of pro-basketball's all-star weekend. The actual
all-star game is 8 p.m. ET Sunday, but tonight has two warm-ups –
the celebrity game at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN and the “Rising Stars”
game, featuring rookies and second-year pros, at 9 p.m. on TNT.
“Kung Fu Panda 2”
(2011) and “Penguins of Madagascar” (2014), 6 and 8 p.m., FX.
It's an animation double-feature. Grown-ups can try “Fight Club”
(1999), 7:38 p.m., Starz, or the Oscar-winning work of Anne Bancroft
and Patty Duke in “The Miracle Worker” (1962) at 8 p.m. ET on
Turner Classic Movies.
p.m., CBS. The original “MacGyver” series included the Coltons, a
tough family of bounty hunters. Now they're back, with Sheryl Lee
Ralph as the knife-wielding Mama Colton; they've already caught the
fugitive, but Mac and Jack want to extract him.
p.m., Fox. During a search for a counterfeit-money kingpin, Dr.
Rosewood (Morris Chestnut) learns new things about the past of Det.
Villa (Jaina Lee Ortiz).
9 p.m., Fox. This is a difficult time for Diana. Just as her daughter
Molly nears her 11th birthday, the girl's father returns
from duty and there are fresh revelations.
10 p.m., CBS. Kevin Dillon guests as Linda's brother. Now he's in
trouble with the Mob; he pleads with his brother-in-law Danny to let
him stay with him until it blows over.
“The History of
Comedy,” midnight, CNN (barring breaking news). Here's a quick
rerun of Thursday's episode, an interesting look at the past and
present of women in comedy.