Weekly Previews

Week’s top-10 for March 30: Three shows exit, two arrive

1) “Hawaii Five-0” (shown here) series-finale, 9 p.m. Friday, CBS. This has been almost eternal – 12 years in the original series, 10 more for this reboot. Now it closes with flashbacks that include three deceased people – Steve McGarrett’s father, the man who killed him (Victor Hesse) and the man who ordered it (Wo Fat). There’s more: McGarrett finally solves the case that his father left him. Also, Wo Fat’s widow – desperate to get the coded message sent by McGarrett’s late mother – has kidnapped Danny. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for March 23: Time for tears & rage

1) “This Is Us” season-finale, 9 p.m. Tuesday, NBC. As last week’s fascinating episode ended, Rebecca reluctantly agreed to go away for a clinical trial, trying to head off Alzheimer’s disease in its early stages. That soothed one son (Randall), but may enrage the other (Kevin), who wants her near home. Now the two guys collide (shown here) at the first birthday party for Jack, the blind son of their sister Kate and her husband Toby. Expect something good; “This Is Us” has ended its seasons with deeply emotional jolts. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for March 16: More “Blacklist,” less basketball

1) The Blacklist” return, 8 and 9 p.m. Friday, NBC. After three months on the shelf, this smart, twisty show has episodes that are opposites, despite some common threads. Both involve a valuable gold box; both link Red (James Spader, shown here in a previous episode) with an imposing blonde – Gillian Alexy the first hour, Joely Redgrave the second. But that first hour is a clever art-theft tale; the second throws logic aside, for a fun yarn. In the Agatha Christie style, people are in a mansion on a dark and stormy night, with no escape and much death. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for March 9: Finales and “Modern” memories

1) “Modern Family” marathon, 8-11 p.m. Wednesday, ABC. As its April 8 farewell nears, this show – five-time winner of the best-comedy Emmy – revisits its splendid past. Here are six episodes chosen by viewers’ votes; that starts with the pilot(shown here)  that introduced Lily to the family and the show to us. At 8:30 is the great moment when the kids spot their parents having sex. Also: Jay helps Manny’s sales at 9; a Las Vegas trip at 9:30; a gem seen through Claire’s computer at 10; an alliance to hide mistakes at 10:30. Read more…

Top-10 for week of March 2: “Empire” returns, FX soars

1) “Empire” return, 9 p.m. Tuesday, Fox. For six seasons, this has offered a unique mix: It’s had great music – rhythm-and-blues, pop and rap – alongside messy, over-the top soap opera (shown here). For this final season, the show aired 10 episodes, then took an 11-week break; now it’s back for its last 10. Fox says only that this hour has a “shocking revelation”; there have been plenty in “Empire.” It also implies that a death shakes the Lyon family. Also, Andre makes an important decision and Devon confronts Tiana. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Feb. 24: Dramas and masterful Miles

1) “Dispatches From Elsewhere” debut, 10 p.m. Sunday, AMC. From its start — a narrator introducing a bland chap – we know this is strange and maybe wonderful. Odd messages lure the chap (Jason Segal, who directed and co-wrote) to strangers (Sally Field, Andre Benjamin, shown here, and transgender actress Eve Lindley). “Dispatches” will then jump to Mondays … the same move AMC already made with “Better Call Saul.” The intriguing “Saul” season-opener reruns at 7:45 p.m. today, with a new episode at 9 p.m. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Feb. 17: A time for farewells

1) “America’s Got Talent: The Champions” finale, 8-10 p.m. today, NBC. It’s time to name what the shows calls its “world champion.” This started with 22 people who had done well on “America’s Got Talent,” plus 18 from other “Got Talent” shows globally. Last week, its top 10 – six of them from “AGT” – performed and viewers voted. There are three singers (including young Norwegian Angelina Jordan, shown here) and three dance groups (one adding acrobatics), plus acrobats, a trapeze act, a dog act and a violinist. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Feb. 10: “Survivor” and “Idol” return

1) “Survivor” opener, 8-10 p.m. Wednesday, CBS. The 40th edition is full of winners. All 20 contestants(show here with host Jeff Probst) have been champions before; one (Sandra Diaz-Twine) has done it twice. They go back as far as Ethan Zohn, who won the third edition, in 2001 … and are as recent as the 2018 winners, Nick Wilson and Wendell Holland. Rob and Amber Mariano are also back. She won in 2004, right after accepting his proposal; he won in 2011. Leaving their four daughters (ages 5 to 10) behind, they both headed to Fiji. Read more…

Week’s top-10 for Feb. 3: Oscar week begins

1) Academy Awards, 8 p.m. Sunday, ABC. The bad news is that there will again be no host; at times (including this year’s Emmys), the result can be drab and dreary. And the good? It’s a wide-open field, with no sure winners … and the music should be great. We’ll hear some powerhouse voices – Cynthia Erivo(shown here) will do a song she co-wrote for “Harriet,” Idina Menzel will do a song from “Frozen II.” We’ll also hear Elton John (“Rocketman”), Randy Newman (“Toy Story 4”) and Chrissy Metz (“Breakthrough”). Read more…