Weekly Previews

Week’s top-10 for Jan. 17: Star mastered tragic drama, vibrant musical

1) “Women of the Movement” (shown here) conclusion, 8-10 p.m. Thursday, ABC. In a packed Mississippi courtroom, two women offer crucial testimony. One is a store clerk, 27; after Emmett Till (14, visiting from Chicago) talked to her in 1955, he was kidnapped and killed. The other is his mother, Mamie. The case would propel the civil rights movement; Mamie Till-Mobley would go on to be an educator and an activist. This wraps up an intense, six-hour mini-series; a documentary will follow at 10 p.m.. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Dec. 27: parties, parade, bowl games

1) “New Year’s Rockin’ Eve,” 8-11 p.m. Friday and 11:30 p.m. to 2:13 a.m., ABC. With COVID re-surging, the best way to party is in front of our TV sets. Ryan Seacrest will be in Times Square (shownhere in a previous year), with live performances from LL Cool J, Journey, Chloe and Karol G. The marathon also has Billy Porter in New Orleans, Daddy Yankee in Puerto Rico and a pre-taped Los Angele party with Ciara, Macklemore, Avril Lavine, Walker Hayes, OneRepublic, French Montana, Big Boi, Don Omar and many more. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Dec. 20: a swirl of great music

1) “Kennedy Center Honors,” 9-11 p.m. Wednesday, CBS. Each year, this blends great tributes, films and music. This one starts with Joni Mitchell songs by Norah Jones (shown here in a previous concet), Herbie Hancock and more; it ends with Berry Gordy, the Motown founder, and Stevie Wonder, Andra Day and Smokey Robinson. In between are opera star Justin Diaz, Bette Midler (songs by Kelli O’Hara and Billy Porter) and Lorne Michaels – with generations of his “Saturday Night Live” stars, from Steve Martin to Pete Davidson. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Dec. 13: Grinch, Charlie & lotsa finales

1) Grinch and Charlie Brown, Saturday and Sunday. The two greatest Christmas specials will share the weekend, offering clever animation, great music and stories that are both warm and funny. “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” is 7 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday on TNT, alongside terrific movies – “A Christmas Story” (1983) at 7:30 p.m. and Patrick Stewart’s “A Christmas Carol” (1999) at 10. “A Charlie Brown Christmas” (shown here) is 7:30 p.m. Sunday on PBS. Charlie’s also on Apple TV+; Grinch will be on NBC Dec. 25. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Dec. 6: A sharp comedy begins; a stern drama ends

1) “Abbott Elementary” debut, 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, ABC. Quinta Brunson is a tiny (4-foot-11) force, ready to save TV comedy. She went to school in Philadelphia, then became a star in streaming shows and on cable, in “A Black Lady Sketch Show” and (as a cowboy outlaw) in “Miracle Workers.” Now she’s written this clever show and stars as a Philly teacher (shown here, left) who has earnest (if overwhelmed) colleagues and a clueless principal. It gets a weekly spot Jan. 4, but for now, we can savor a sharp and funny opener. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Nov. 29: “Annie,” “Sunny” and lotsa Christmas

1) “Annie Live,” 8 p.m. Thursday, NBC. There are better musicals, but Hollywood keeps doing this one. Daddy Warbucks has been Albert Finney (in a fairly good 1982 John Huston film), Victor Garber (a well-made 1999 one on ABC), Jamie Foxx (a 2014 disappointment) and now Harry Connick. Celina Smith (shown here with Connick) has the title role, alongside Taraji Henson and some gifted singers – Nicole Scherzinger and Megan Hilty. Andrea McArdle (who was Broadway’s original Annie in 1977) plays Eleanor Roosevelt. Read more…

Week’s top-10: Gaga, Grinch, Tony, Santa, more

1) “One Last Time: An Evening With Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga,” 8 p.m. Sunday, CBS. Two weeks after triumphing with Adele, CBS has two more of the all-time greats. On his 95th birthday, Bennett had what’s expected to be his final public concert; Alzheimer’s has taken other memories, but he still does songs perfectly. In Radio City Music Hall, his friend Gaga, 35, does four potent jazz/pop songs, then brings him on. Backed by gifted musicians – his quartet, her quintet and an orchestra – both stars (shown here at a previous event) soar. Read more…

Week’s top 10 for Nov. 15: music, holidays, more

1) “American Music Awards,” 8-11 p.m. Sunday, ABC. Eleven days after airing the Country Music Association awards, ABC has more music. One song, “Butter,” links BTS and Megan Thee Stallion. Others will link Carrie Underwood with Jason Aldean and New Edition with New Kids On the Block. Also performing are Kane Brown, Bad Bunny and Olivia Rodrigo (shown here), who leads with seven nominations. She’s up for artist of the year, alongside BTS, Drake, Taylor Swift, Aiana Grande and The Weeknd. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Nov. 8 has two mega-music nights

1) Country Music Association awards, 8-11 p.m. Wednesday, ABC. All five Entertainer of the Year nominees will perform. That includes Eric Church (shown here) and Chris Stapleton, who lead with five nominations each, plus Luke Combs and Miranda Lambert (three each) and Carrie Underwood (one). Also performing: Gabby Barrett (four nominations, including best new artist), Luke Bryan (who hosts), Blake Shelton, Jennifer Hudson, Keith Urban, Jason Aldean, Mickey Guyton, Thomas Rhett, Kane Brown and more. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Nov. 1: A busy stretch for dramas

1) “CSI: Vegas,” 10 p.m. Wednesday, CBS. This “CSI” reboot has been tackling an enigma: Someone framed former lab tech Hodges; that could invalidate thousands of convictions. Now Grissom and Sidle have a suspect, in an intriguing story that will reach a turning point next week. This episode also offers a quicker and flashier case: All of the people on a flight have been brutally killed … yet someone managed to escape with a fortune. Folsom (Matt Laurea, shown here with Mandeep Dhillon) solves it, and even has a few warm moments. Read more…