Tonight's TV Hot List: Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2009
Naveen Andrews and Jorge Garcia, Lost
9 pm/ET ABC
As Season 5 begins, you'll see Dr. Marvin Candle (or whoever he is) as you've never seen him before. He's animated, because of something that almost happens in the Orchid during the Dharma Initiative days. Meanwhile, back in the States, three years have passed since the Oceanic 6 returned, but time is a very relative concept on Lost. As Locke (who's dead in the U.S., but alive on the island) puts it: "When am I?" And speaking of the dead, say hello again to Ana Lucia (Michelle Rodriguez). — Paul Droesch
Find Lost clips in our Online Video Guide.
Lie to Me
9:03 pm/ET Fox
Sneer. Smile. Put your hand in a pocket. Do any of those in front of psychologist Cal Lightman (Tim Roth), an expert in facial expressions and body language, and he'll know what you're really thinking. That's the premise of this promising police procedural, which begins with Cal out to determine who killed a high-school teacher. The cops think a conservative-Christian student did it, and his body language does tell Cal that he's hiding something. But it's not murder. — Paul Droesch
For clips of Lie to Me, visit our Online Video Guide.
8 pm/ET Fox
Phoenix was rising in the inaugural episode last week, and so was neophyte judge Kara DioGuardi's ire: Her verbal sparring with "bikini girl" was an early highlight. Idol refuses to be idle in its eighth season — there have been some great hissy-fit dramas, Hung-esque train wrecks and, thankfully, some genuine talent (the inspiring Scott MacIntyre, for one). The early auditions continue tonight in Louisville. Which of these Louisville sluggers of sing will knock it out? And which will swing and miss? — Dean Maurer
Get more Idol in our Online Video Guide.
Make 'Em Laugh: The Funny Business of America
8 pm/ET PBS
This high-jinks twofer surveys the purveyors of slapstick and the so-called bad boys and gals who used the First Amendment to push past the accepted limits of comedy. For the first half, that means the likes of Laurel and Hardy, the Marx Brothers, the Three Stooges and Lucille Ball. The second half features Mae West and her risqué quips, Moms Mabley and her edgy topics and George Carlin and his "Seven Dirty Words" routine. — Jeff Gemmill
For more PBS programs, visit our Online Video Guide.
Top Chef: New York
10 pm/ET Bravo
The chefs are starting to dish — dirt, that is. There's knife-sharp competition between Stefan and Hosea, it's getting nasty between Stefan and Jamie, and scathing new judge Toby Young keeps the tension boiling over. These kitchen wars are heating up, so there's no better time for tonight's super-size feat, "restaurant wars." In this all-encompassing challenge, the chefs create all aspects of an eatery in only 24 hours. And it appears something else is brewing. Could there be a little romance between Hosea and Leah? — Dean Maurer
For clips of Top Chef, visit our Online Video Guide.