There's a lot of TV options to choose from. Too much for any one person to completely monitor, but that doesn't mean we're not going to do our best to sift through all the listings and figure out what you should be watching every week...with all the highlights, lowlights and guilty pleasures you can stand.
Monday, Jan. 17th
8:00 p.m. How I Met Your Mother (CBS)
After an episode that literally counted down to the unexpected death of the lovable Marshall's father, we're anxiously awaiting the rest of this season of HIMYM. This week's episode has Marshall and the gang heading to Minnesota (Marshall's home) where he deals with his grieving family as well as a pint-sized bully from middle school. We're hoping for some cathartic bully beatdown on screen. (Hey Tiny: don’t start none, won’t be none.)
Also on Monday
9:00 p.m. Being Human (Syfy)
A remake of a British fantasy series, Human follows a trio of roommates with unconventional habits…eating and otherwise. One's a werewolf, one's a vampire, and the apartment they share is haunted by the ghost of their landlord's fiance. We'd just as soon watch the original, but Syfy has done a respectable job with offbeat original programming like Warehouse 13 and Eureka in the wake of Battlestar Galactica, earning them the benefit of the doubt. In other words, the heat is on Syfy, Glenn Frey-style.
Tuesday, Jan. 18th
10:30 p.m. Onion SportsDome (Comedy Central)
Dome takes a skewed, Soup-like approach to sports "reporting," but thankfully doesn't swipe the patented "guy in front of a screen" format. Instead, the show from the geniuses over at The Onion takes a cue from the excitable SportsCenter as it pokes fun at the world of athletics. We're all for more sports on TV and more actual laugh-inducing comedy on Comedy Central. (In other words, nothing that includes the words "Dunham" or "Mencia.")
Friday, Jan. 21st
10:00 p.m. Spartacus: Gods of the Arena (Starz)
Gods serves as a prequel to the previous Spartacus series. The swords-and-sandals-and-sexy aspect of the original run has been transferred over to this six-episode series, and we're all for that. How many cop shows can you handle? Or shows with drug-dealing but well-meaning parents? We're just saying, every now and then it's nice to have a different genre of murderers to watch on screen.
Saturday, Jan. 22nd
9:00 p.m. Austin City Limits (PBS)
For the uninitiated, it’s easy to think of the long-running Austin City Limits as a dusty old stage filled with banjo pickers, guitar pluckers, and snore-along stories. But as this week's episode proves, there’s a reason why ACL is without a doubt the greatest live-music showcase on TV. Tune in for plenty of feedback as both Sonic Youth and The Black Keys (above) perform. Alternative rock! All that's missing is Kennedy…
THE SILVER LINING
Sunday, Jan. 23rd
10:30 p.m. Holly's World (E!)
Hugh Hefner's blonde buxom former concubine continues to live a rich, fulfilling life in Vegas surrounded by her entourage of Nobel and Pulitzer prize winners. We kid, we kid…it's actually some of the more annoying people on television, but we can sit through all that for the Holly hotness that comes along with it.
THE RETURN OF MUST-SEE TV?
Thursday, Jan. 20th
8:00-11:00 p.m. Community, Perfect Couples, The Office, Parks & Recreation, 30 Rock and Outsourced
NBC seemed to have an embarrassment of sitcom riches over the past few seasons. In addition to longtime gems like The Office and 30 Rock, last-season favorites like Community and Parks & Recreation came back (Parks & Rec about five months late, but hell, we’ll take it), and the new Outsourced turned into a surprise favorite (yeah, we don’t get it, either). With the network seemingly having more half-hour sitcoms than could fit in their usual 8-10 slot, the Peacock actually cleared out the 10-11 block to make room for Parks & Rec and to debut Perfect Couples (starring Maxim cover girl Olivia Munn). Three hours of funny? We'll bite.