The Case Against 8
Watching history repeat itself can be thrilling. In a neat juxtaposition, two stirring documentaries about historic civil-rights campaigns — one fresh in memory, the other marking a 50th-anniversary milestone — are airing on consecutive nights this week, a galvanizing reminder of the personal stakes in the ongoing struggle for individual freedoms.
HBO's The Case Against 8 (Monday, 9/8c), a film-festival favorite, is an intimate, exhaustive account of last year's legal battle to overturn California's Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage. Freedom Summer, from PBS's acclaimed American Experience series (Tuesday at 9/8c, check tvguide.com listings), recalls the selfless efforts of hundreds of college students from across the country who descended on Mississippi in the sweltering summer of 1964, facing violent resistance in their determination to challenge the segregationist establishment and register African Americans to vote.
It's a bird. It's a plane. Duck and cover! What goes up must come down in a small town trapped — wait for it — Under the Dome, the title of an ingeniously warped conceit from the fertile mind of Stephen King, who believes that ...
The basic theme of tonight's eventful Grey's Anatomy fall finale (ABC, 9/8c) is: "You think you had a bad day?" The doctors of Seattle Grace have their hands and hearts full of trauma, with much of the chaos spinning around the emergency surgery involving Teddy's chronically ill but eternally chipper ...
The Biggest Loser
Tennis star Anna Kournikova hits the court with the contestants tonight to lead a full-body workout before the group members are surprised with a tennis-ball pop challenge. Off the court, the players have plenty of drama to deal with after one contestant confesses to wanting to leave the ranch, and another is singled out by Bob during a grueling workout. — Brie Hearn
Read on for previews of 30 for 30, Life Unexpected, Caprica, POV, Dancing with the Stars and Sons of Anarchy.
The crime show's 10-episode inaugural season comes to a close with music-loving sleuth Dwight Hendricks trying to hit the right notes regarding an important, unresolved case from his past. Cut to a seedy pocket of Memphis, where an enigmatic man with amnesia is found with a bullet wound. Dwight digs into the mystery man's apparently shady past...and explores the possibility that he might be connected to the unsolved beating death of a little girl. Can Dwight heat up this cold case? Meanwhile, a financially troubled Lt. Rice considers a change in career.
Read on for previews of Jefferson, 30 for 30, Shaq Vs., Covert Affairs, POV and Rescue Me.
If Spock died in the second Star Trek film and came back to life in the third, and if David Tennant's Dr. Who can "die" and come back as Matt Smith, surely Artie (Saul Rubinek) could've found something in the warehouse to let him survive the inferno that consumed him at the end of the first-season finale. Right? And while we're throwing around sci-fi luminaries, it's worth mentioning that an author who helped to establish the genre turns up in tonight's second-season launch.
Read on for previews of the Tour de France, America's Got Talent, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, Rescue Me, The Last Lion of Liuwa and P.O.V..
It's all about inspiration this week on Idol. Last night, the seven still-standing singers performed a batch of inspiring tunes, a proper lead-in to tonight's uplifting "Idol Gives Back" episode, an initiative that raises funds for U.S. and global charities and brims with performances. Queen Latifah emcees the performance portion of the show from the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, where Alicia Keys (last night's mentor), Carrie Underwood, Black Eyed Peas, Annie Lennox, Elton John, Jeff Beck and Joss Stone, and Mary J. Blige take the stage. But on such a giving evening, something might be taken away: One of the Top 7 singers is slated to be eliminated.
Read on for previews of Mercy, Accidentally on Purpose, In Plain Sight and P.O.V..
Real World: DC
Eight sexy strangers arrive in the nation's capital and promptly check out their posh new pad — and one another — as the seminal reality series launches its 23rd season. The D.C. cast includes Ty, a former foster child from Baltimore; outspoken Ashley, who was an Obama delegate; Mike, a bisexual environmentalist from Colorado; and Emily, a Midwesterner who's skeptical of religion after breaking from the fundamentalist Christian cult in which she was raised.
Read on for previews of Happy New Year, Charlie Brown, P.O.V., Nightline and Conspiracy Theory with Jesse Ventura.
P.O.V.: Revolution '67
Unscripted shows are a staple of the TV landscape. But no reality series has ever packed as provocative a punch as public television's documentary showcase P.O.V., which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this summer. Its 1991 presentation of Tongues Untied, a groundbreaking film about gay life in the black community, was condemned on the Senate floor and stations that carried the show received bomb threats. Farmingville, a film about the murder of two undocumented Mexican day laborers in a Long Island town, aired just after President Bush proposed his guest-worker program in 2004 and helped stir the recent immigration debate. The series has also brought the work of filmmaking mavericks Michael Moore and the