Another May weekend, another deluge of season finales — though none are likely to blow the mind with as much daring, panache and imaginative fervor as BBC America's gloriously inventive Doctor Who (Saturday, 8/7c), which signs off until next time-travel with one of its trippiest yet emotionally powerful episodes to date. Steven Moffat's typically clever script, brimming with colorful incident and characters grandly heroic or villainous, finds a nifty way to salute the 50-year history of Doctors as we learn more about the impossibly irrepressible companion Clara (the smashing Jenna-Louise Coleman), first seen in a cosmic haze — "I don't know where I am ... Sometimes I think I'm everywhere at once" — with only one constant to guide her: "I have to save the Doctor." That same impulse prompts lizard lady Vastra, her wife Jenny and the stalwart Strax to summon Clara to a psychic conference call, interrupted by the menacing "Whisper Men" (reminiscent of the ghoulish Gentlemen from Buffy's classic "Hush" episode).
All of these mystifying shenanigans lead the dear Doctor (Matt Smith) to confront "a secret ... he will take to the grave," and given that the episode is titled "The Name of the Doctor," we leave the rest to your imagination. Such a grand fantasy, this Doctor Who, with so much romance and breathtaking sacrifice amid the whimsy. By any name, it's an original.
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FINALE FEVER: Among the weekend's other notable finales: On The CW's Nikita (Friday, 8/7c), which will conclude its run next season with a final six-episode arc, the evil Amanda makes Nikita choose between saving herself or her beloved Michael. ... ABC's sleeper reality hit Shark Tank closes shop with back-to-back episodes (Friday, 8/7c) including updates on some of the past transactions. ... The fourth-season finale of CBS' Undercover Boss (Friday, 8/7c) also revisits past episodes, as bosses reflect on how the experience changed them and their companies. ... Three of Fox's Sunday 'toons expand to an hour: The Cleveland Show (7/6c), The Simpsons (8/7c) — in which Seth MacFarlane crosses over to the Groening camp for the first time to guest-voice the role of Marge's new online suitor, bonding over a Downton Abbey-style British soap, "Upton Rectory" — and Family Guy (9/8c), where Stewie and Brian have another time-machine mishap, creating alt-versions of the boy and dog.
LIVE AT FIVE: The happy Saturday Night Live news: Ben Affleck is back as guest host for the season finale (Saturday, 11:30/10:30c, NBC), joining the rarefied ranks of the "Five-Timers' Club" — so don't be surprised if some other favorite repeaters return to celebrate (Tom Hanks, after all, is just a few streets away playing Broadway). If you want to relive the Oscar-winner's past SNL triumphs, VH1 will replay Affleck's first four appearances from 2000, 2004 (twice) and 2008 in a mini-marathon, starting Saturday at 2 pm/1c. The sad SNL news: This is the last time the versatile and hilarious Bill Hader will be on stage as a regular cast member. Can we get one last guide to New York's hottest clubs from Stefon before he goes? Please?
THE PLAYLIST: Music is in the airwaves, with HBO's annual presentation of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (Saturday, 9/8c), filmed last month in Los Angeles. Inductees include performers Heart, Albert King, Randy Newman, Public Enemy, Rush and Donna Summer, with Lou Adler and Quincy Jones as non-performer honorees. Highlights include Jennifer Hudson saluting the late Summer with her own take on "Last Dance," Usher performing Michael Jackson's "Rock With You" for the Jones tribute and Carole King singing her classic "So Far Away" for producer Adler. ... With her farewell TV tour now officially underway, Barbara Walters anchors a compilation of ABC News interviews she and others conducted with famous music-makers from Cher to Gaga in a special two-hour 20/20, "Rock 'n' Royalty: Billboard's All-Stars" (Saturday, 9/8c, ABC). ... It's a curtain raiser for Sunday's main event: ABC's live broadcast of the 2013 Billboard Music Awards (8/7c) from Las Vegas, an extravagana highlighted by Prince performing and accepting the Icon Award. ... CBS counters with its own country-flavored music special: ACM Presents: Tim McGraw's Superstar Country Night (9/8c), which took place in early April, also from Vegas. For those keeping score, those scheduled to appear in both shows include The Band Perry, Taylor Swift, Pitbull and Ne-Yo. Small world.