He Plays: Jay Kulina, the drug-addled, deeply sensitive MMA fighter battling his distant, hard-assed gym-owner father (Frank Grillo) and his own demons on DirecTV's Kingdom. "The gym gives Jay discipline and keeps him away from his addictions," Tucker, 32, says of Jay's sweaty Season 1 evolution from burnout to potential champion. "He ultimately ends up realizing who he is and what he's done. [But] he needs to ask for help from his dad, and that is the hardest thing for him to do."
Curses are a dime a dozen in the fractured fairy-tale world of Once Upon a Time — but this one's a doozy! This Sunday's episode finds Ingrid, the crazed Snow Queen (Elizabeth Mitchell), all set to devastate the citizens of Storybrooke with her Spell of Shattered Sight.
How Murray Saved Christmas
Tis the season for holiday TV specials, but classic characters like Rudolph and Frosty will have some company this year when NBC premieres the hour-long animated How Murray Saved Christmas on Friday, Dec. 5 at 8/7c.
The Walking Dead books an appointment for revenge at Grady Memorial Hospital in the show's midseason finale (airing Sunday, Nov. 30 at 9/8c on AMC). The fight is led by Daryl (Norman Reedus), who is especially driven to rescue his two beloved allies — Beth (Emily Kinney) and Carol (Melissa McBride) — being held captive by the hospital's menacing police brigade. "He's ready to just burn the place down," Reedus says. "It's a different world now, and certain people have gone so dark that you have to put down the rabid ones in order to survive."
Does S.H.I.E.L.D. know about this? No case is too big or fantastical for the pint-size investigators on Odd Squad, an ambitious new live-action PBS Kids series that trails secret agents Olive (Dalila Bela) and Otto (Filip Geljo) as they try to solve a head-scratching array of problems in their goofy hometown. Whether it's runaway dinosaurs or citizens suddenly vanishing into thin air or a basketball team that's been hit with a string of bad luck, Olive and Otto always save the day. But get this: They do it by using various forms of mathematics. Consider it damage control.
Max Greenfield, Ashton Kutcher
Holy "Schmidt"! That last name has become a go-to for TV and film writers looking to give their characters a memorable moniker.
Netflix made headlines last week when it picked up two seasons of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, the sitcom starring Ellie Kemper as a former cult member navigating the big city. NBC was originally set to launch the new comedy, from 30 Rock exec producers Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, but the Netflix deal was too good to pass up (and saved NBC the expense of trying to launch the new show in this sitcom-challenged era).
Ophelia Lovibond, Jonny Lee Miller
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Question: I've been a fan of Elementary, and I really liked the story arc last season with Rhys Ifans playing Mycroft. His involvement with Watson, moving to New York, opening the restaurant, concealing from everyone that he was MI6: The whole season seemed to give a fresh twist to the Sherlock history and move it forward. This season, however, with Kitty (Ophelia Lovibond), I'm not getting what the writers are doing. I think she's beyond boring, probably because she has no real reason to be there, and she's splintering the energy I used to feel between Sherlock and Watson, and each of them to Bell and Gregson. None of the episodes this year has grabbed me. Is it just me? Do they have a story arc buried in there someplace I can't see? I'd rather they go back to a crime-of-the-week if they can't do better than this. I love your column, by the way! I can't believe how long it took me to find it, but now I never miss it. — Kay
Taraji P. Henson and Gladys Knight
Gladys Knight rarely takes on dramatic acting roles, but when she does, she makes them seem effortless. Case in point: the Lifetime holiday movie Seasons of Love, in which she plays Angie, the gracious matriarch of an affluent family, whose husband of 35 years dies on New Year's Eve. The Grammy-winning R&B icon swears that singing and acting are as different as, well, Knight and day.
Jessie Usher, RonReaco Lee, Mike Epps
They've got game on the court — but what about on TV? Several current and past NBA stars are taking a shot at producing, often with shows that were inspired by their own lives.
Many of them have even formed production companies, with an eye toward making Hollywood more of a full-time gig once they're pooped on hoops. Recently returned Cleveland Cavaliers star LeBron James is leading the charge, as one of the executive producers on the new Starz comedy...
Cristela is smashing barriers both on and off screen. The sitcom, loosely based on Cristela Alonzo 's life and stand-up routine, stars the comedian as a young woman living with her chaotic family while striving to become a lawyer. The multi-camera sitcom has earned positive attention from critics, particularly thanks to its honest portrayal of an extended Mexican-American family all living under one roof in Dallas. Alonzo, who co-created the show with fellow executive producer Kevin Hench, explains why you should get to know Cristela.