(Here are the five TV best-bets for Thursday, Jan. 13; feel free to use in any form – all or some, print and/or web)
1) “Call Me Kat,” 9 p.m., Fox. Low-key and kind of goofy, this is also oddly enjoyable. In the season-opener (after football on Sunday), Kat (Mayim Bialik, shown here in a previous episode) was in the unfamiliar position of choosing between two guys. She chose Oscar; now the show settles into its regular slot as they try to celebrate and their friends, Randi and Carter, build their own romance. The result, as usual, is light and likable.
2) “Pivoting,” 9:30 p.m., Fox. On the surface, this would seem to be a good match for “Kat.” Both are comedies with female stars; both arrived after football on Sunday. Still, they’re near-opposites: Unlike “Kat,” this show has no studio audience and (at times) a serious tone. After a friend’s death, three friends are determined to pivot their lives. One (Maggie Q) went from doctor to grocery-store worker; in tonight’s fairly good episode, her intense work ethic bothers her co-workers.
3) “Young Sheldon,” 8 p.m., CBS. While Fox tries to build some Thursday comedies, CBS has four good ones. Tonight, that starts with Sheldon’s teen brother falling for an “older woman.” She’s played by Emily Osment, 29, who has done lots of lightweight shows, but also showed impressive acting skills on “The Kominsky Method,” “Almost Family” and some moving episodes of “Mom.”
4) “Women of the Movement,” 8-10 p.m., ABC. The mid-section of this three-Thursday mini-series has the funeral of Emmett Till, 14, who was slain while visiting his cousins in 1955 Mississippi. His mother insists on an open-casket funeral and stirs pressure to put the accused killers on trial. She confronts them and the realities of the Jim Crow South. A documentary hour follows.
5) “In Cold Blood” (1967), 8 p.m. ET, Turner Classic Movies. With the current surge of true-crime stories, people might want to revisit one of the best. Based on Truman Capote’s book, it tells of the slaying of a Kansas farm family. Scott Wilson and Robert Blake are coldly effective as the killers; Richard Brooks drew Oscar nominations for his script and his direction; other nominations were for Conrad Hall’s black-and-white cinematography and for Quincy Jones’ background music.