1) Country Music Association awards, 8-11 p.m. Wednesday, ABC For the first time in almost forever, an award show has a studio audience – a small, safe one, the CMA says. Hosts are Reba McEntire and Darius Rucker (shown here) – the show’s first Black host in 45 years; the previous one, Charley Pride, gets a lifetime award. Rucker and McEntire will perform together. He’ll also link with Lady Antebellum; she’ll link with Thomas Rhett, Hillary Scott and Chris Tomlin. And Jason Aldean leads a Charlie Daniels tribute.
2) “Chicago Med,” “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago P.D.” season-openers, 8-11 p.m. Wednesday, NBC. At the same time that ABC has country, NBC rolls out its Wednesday shows. It’s their sixth, 11th and ninth seasons respectively, but all three face topical changes. In “Med,” COVID is putting new pressure on the staff; in “P.D.,” the fresh emphasis on police practices affects a unit that had been making its own rules. Meanwhile, Adriyan Rae joins “Fire” as Gianna, a medic who grew up in South Chicago.
3) “Station 19” and “Grey’s Anatomy” season-openers, 8-11 p.m. Thursday, ABC. We start a month into the pandemic, as these Seattle people – firefighter/EMT’s and doctors – face deep stress; then things get much worse, when teens accidentally set a massive fire. In the first hour, the “Station 19” crew responds to the blaze; in the second, we switch to “Grey’s Anatomy,” as the hospital faces an influx of victims. In the third, Meredith is in the middle of an argument between the victems’ families.
4) “The Unicorn” season-opener, 9:30 p.m. Thursday, CBS. The first season was rough on Wade. Widowed for a year, he had chances for romance, but bobbled them. As the season ended, he helped a bright and beautiful woman (Natalie Zea) rescue a skunk – but didn’t get her name. Now he obsesses, in a fairly good episode. Earlier, the second “B Positive” (8:30 p.m., CBS) is again terrific. Gina is willing to give Drew a kidney – if she can abstain from drugs and alcohol. That won’t be easy.
5) “All Rise,” 9 p.m. today, CBS. Back in May, this felt special — the first TV episode about social-distance, shot via social-distancing. Actors stayed at home, with characters communicating Zoom-style. (Two actors, playing Kurt and Rosa, are married, allowing a scene together.) Judge Lola Carmichael (Simone Missick) presides at the first virtual trial. The case is way too simple, but it was an OK try at something others soon did better. Dorian Missick, the star’s husband, adds flavor as a disc jockey.
6) “NeXt,” 9 p.m. Tuesday, Fox. After sitting out a week because of the elections, the 9 p.m. Tuesday dramas are back. On NBC’s “This Is Us,” Kevin is now engaged to his pregnant girlfriend; also, his sister advances in the adoption process, And in “NeXt,” Shea pushes her probe, while her husband and son duck from all-knowing computers. Late in the hour, LeBlanc (John Slattery) has a great monolog and powerful moments with a friend – confined to a computerized wheelchair – who may be involved.
7) “SWAT,” 9 and 10 p.m. Wednesday CBS. Here’s one cop show that’s well-situated for the new emphasis: With a Black showrunner (Aaron Rahsaan Thomas) and star (Shemar Moore as Hondo), it’s always eyed the tenuous relationship of cops and community. Now comes extra depth: The first hour flashes back 28 years, to when Hondo was 17; he witnessed the rage and riots after the Rodney King verdict. In the second hour, the team does surveillance, to see if a crime lord is back in Los Angeles.
8) “The Blacklist” season-opener, 8 p.m. Friday, NBC. As the eighth season begins, Raymond “Red” Reddington (James Spader) has another major villain to pursue. This one, named Roanoke, specializes in extracting people. Beyond that, however, Red has key crises to face: For years, he’s worked well with Liz, the young FBI agent, and her team. But now she’s finally bonding with Katarina, who is her mother … and a former Soviet spy … and one of the only people who know Red’s true identity.
9) “Great Performances: Fiddler: Miracle of Miracles,” 9-10:30 p.m. Friday, PBS. As “Fiddler on the Roof” was developing, some people fretted it would be “too Jewish” for a broad audience. It isn’t: This excellent documentary includes performances by Black teens in Brooklyn, college students in Thailand, a Latino wedding party and more. “Fiddler” won nine Tonys and has thrived for 56 years. We hear reflections from the show’s creators, director and producer and from cast members, then and now.
10) “Bob’s Burgers,” 9 p.m. Sunday, Fox. Cartoon characters easily shrug off the ravages of time and virus. So far, “The Simpsons” has had more than 690 episodes in 32 season, “Family Guy” has had more than 350 in 21 … and now this show, in its 11th year, has No. 200, a fairly funny one. It’s time for the annual Ocean Avenue Business Association’s Ocean Fest: Bob needs to stir up business; his wife Linda has a sculpture-contest entry that the kids realize is ugly. And there’s a catastrophe; there often is.