1) “A Capitol Fourth,” 8 p.m. today, PBS, repeating at 9:30. Even during the pandemic, this delivered rousing music, followed by big-deal fireworks (shown here). Now it’s back to live performances (with a limited crowd), with top voices. Gospel great Yolanda Adams, will be there; so will Gloria Gaynor, whose 1978 “I Will Survive” fits the Covid era. Others include Darren Criss, Andy Grammer, Emily Bear and Loren Allred, whose soaring, off-camera voice propelled “Never Enough” in “The Greatest Showman.” Also, there’s a 65th-anniversary “West Side Story” medley.
2) More Fourth fuss. today, Disney+ launches “America the Beautiful,” an ambitious National Geographic series. Fox News continues its Fourth weekend, peaking from8-10 p.m. ET with music (Lee Greenwood, Chris Janson, Kameron Marlowe) and fireworks. CNN’s coverage, including fireworks, is from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m. ET. NBC has music (Pitbull, Josh Groban and more) and fireworks from New York City at 8 p.m., repeating highlights from 10-11. And at 10 p.m., CMT will be in Nashville for Old Dominion, the National Symphony and fireworks.
3) “The Challenge: USA” debut, 9:30- 11 p.m. Wednesday, CBS. This is CBS’ big newcomer for the summer, incliuding some huge physical challenges. The network has assembled 28 contestants from its other reality shows, including a half-dozen champions. There are three winners from “Survivor” (Tyson Apostol, Ben Driebergen and Sarah Lacina) and one apiece from “Amazing Race” (James Wallington), “Love Island” (Justine Ndiba) and “Big Brother” (Xavier Prather). After this week, the show will settle into its 9 p.m. slot on Wednesdays.
4) “Big Brother” season-opener, 8-9:30 p.m. Wednesday, And here’s the other half of CBS summer push, now launching its 24th edition. Julie Chen Moonves has remained the host throughout, even surviving the scandals surrounding her husband, forerm CBS chief Les Moonves. This week ,she’ll introduce the new housemates and the new look of the house. They’ll be confined there until they’re ousted … or until the final survivor wins $500,00 or more. The show bcontinues at 9 p.m. Thursdays and 8 p.m. Sundays and Wednesdays, until Sept. 25..
5) “Masterpiece: Grantchester” season-opener, 9 p.m. Sunday, PBS. This is the seventh season of solid mysteries, with a handsome vicar solving crimes with his police friend Geordie. Lately, it’s also dug into personal pain. Leonard, the curate, was imprisoned for homosexuality (then a crime in England); now he’s out and has a coffeehouse. Georgie, drinking heavily, is separated from his wife; his niece arrives to help. The vicar falls for an intense lover with a fragmented life. With one exception (an over-the-top new police boss), it’s a seson of well-crafted drama..
6) “Generation Gap” debut, 9 p.m. Thursday, ABC. Some top-tier people are producing this show, including “Survivor” producer Mark Burnett and talk-show hosts Kelly Ripa and Jimmy Kimmel. Ripa is the host, asking grandparents and grandkids questions about each others’ eras. That follows the 8 p.m. season-opener of “Press Your Luck,” as ABC’s summer game rush begins. (See next paragraph.) It’s followed at 10 p.m. by the season-opener of “The Fatal Flaw,” a true-crime series that loojks at the one detail that breaks a case..
7) “Final Sraw” debut, 9 p.m. Sunday, ABC. Here’s the next step in ABC’s game-show summer, as teams try to pull things out of a tower, without it collapsing. Yes, that sounds suspiciously like Jenga – but instead of blocks, this tower ranges from basketballs to kitchen appliances. Janelle James, the self-centered principal in “Abbott Elementary” – hosts. That will be sandwiched by the season-openers of “Celebrity Family Feud” (with Steve Harvey as the Emmy-winning host) at 8 p.m. and” $100,000 Pyramid” (hosted by Michael Strahan) at 10.
8) “Titans” season-opener, 10 p.m. Tuesday, TNT. This action series streamed for two years on the now-departed DC Universe and for another year on HBO Max. Now its second season resurfaces on TNT, where more people can see it: At the core is Dick Grayson – trying to emerge on his own, after being Batman’s pal, Robin. After battling Trigon, he leads a batch of teen superheroes — bearing nams like Raven, Beast Boy and Wonder Girl — to Titan Tower. Alas, the season also introduces Esai Morales as Slade Wilson – also known as Deathstroke.
9) “America Outdoors,” 9 p.m. Tuesday, PBS. Here’s a three-show stretch of excellent, non-fiction shows on PBS. First Baratunde Thurston visits Death Valley, where the temperature can reach 134 degrees … but a freak showstorm hit a lone resident who “survived on beans and stubbornness.” Then “The Great Muslim American Road Trip” is at 10; rapper Mona Haydar takes her husband from her native Michigan to Chicago and beyond. At 8 p.m. Wednesday, David Attenborough’s “Green Planet” offers stunning views of the plant world.
10) AND MORE; At 8 p.m. Wednesday, CW’s “Mysteries Decoded” opens its season by visiting the 1736 house that led to the “Conjuring” movies It’s a so-so hour, but stick around for “Wellington Paranormal” at 9, with a drolly funny “Where’s Waldo” take-off. At 8 p.m. Saturday, Lifetime starts a four-week, eight-houjr prequel, “Flowers in the Attic: The Origin.” It’s well-made but – in the Victorian Gothic tradition – endlessly grim. And at 7 p.m. Sunday, an intriguing show — “Who Do You Think You Are?”– returns to NBC, starting with Billy Porter probing his roots.