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culture

Televisualist: Mysterious New Season, Sorta

Each week, Torontoist examines the upcoming TV listings and makes note of programs that are entertaining, informative, and of quality. Or, alternately, none of those. The result: Televisualist.

They can't all be winners, folks...

Monday

The CBC a few years ago decided, probably wisely, that their TV seasons should primarily begin in January so as to avoid competing with the American debuts in the fall. Accordingly, tonight you can watch the season premieres of Mr. D, The Ron James Show, and Murdoch Mysteries. So that makes Murdoch Mysteries and two shows we would use to punish criminals. Well, one out of three ain’t bad, CBC. Actually, come to think of it, one out of three is actually pretty bad, statistically speaking. (Beginning at 8 p.m.)

Also returning for a new season: The Bachelor. But we find ourselves temporarily out of jokes about how awful and skeevy The Bachelor is. Please come up with some yourselves. Thank you. (CFMT, 8 p.m.)

Air Aces is actually a show about history (Canadian pilots, to be precise), and it is on History Television, and we cannot handle that because it is so rare nowadays. (9 p.m.)

Deception is NBC’s new soap about a young woman who is also a cop whose rich friend is murdered and maybe it was her rich family that did it, so the lady cop goes undercover to find whodunnit. Basically this is Revenge, except much more trashy, and Revenge was pretty damn trashy in the first place. (Global, 10 p.m.)

Love It Or List It Vancouver mocks you for not being able to afford even a measly condo! You pathetic slob! Winners have three-bedroom townhouses! (W, 10 p.m.)

Thankfully, after nearly giving us a fright with that actual historical show, History Television debuts Outback Hunters as well, and this show about real-life Crocodile Dundees is as not-really-that-historical as we have come to expect from the channel these days, so our universe once again makes sense. (10 p.m.)


Tuesday

Cracked has nothing to do with the popular comedy/lists website, but instead is a police drama about a cop (David Sutcliffe, who used to play Rory’s dad on Gilmore Girls) who returns to the force while still suffering the effects of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. We probably would have liked this better if he made a list which was amusing. Just saying. (CBC, 9 p.m.)

The Joe Schmo Show was, years ago, a brilliant concept executed near-perfectly: bring a real guy onto a fake Big Brother-style reality show and see how he acts. (Answer: he turned out to be a really good dude.) Then they did it again with two people on a mock dating show, and it was still very clever. Now, years later, they’re doing it all over again, except this time, the fake show is a “competing bounty hunters” show, and one of the fake contestants is Lorenzo Lamas playing himself. We are seriously looking forward to this like you would not believe. (Spike, 10 p.m.)

Slice, perhaps feeling overlooked after all the abuse Televisualist has heaped on TLC of late, premieres the new season of Four Weddings Canada tonight. Don’t worry, Slice! We still think you’re awful too! (8 p.m.)


Wednesday

The Simpsons rerun of the week: “Monty Can’t Buy Me Love,” wherein Mr. Burns is jealous of a popular billionaire and seeks to get people to love him by capturing the Loch Ness Monster. “Monster fever has gripped Springfield by the throat. And it’s all thanks to one man. Montgomery Burns has captured not only a legendary monster, but also our hearts. And by the way girls, he’s single!” (Comedy Network, 8:30 p.m.)

It’s the People’s Choice Awards! In case you needed to be reminded of what everybody liked this past year. Did you know that people really liked The Avengers, for example? Because they did! (Global, 9 p.m.)

Arctic Air returns for another season of Adam Beach’s weirdly flat line readings. (CBC, 9 p.m.)


Thursday

It’s the 18th annual Critics’ Choice Movie Awards, and yes, this really does air one night after the People’s Choice Awards, because the world simply lines up to give us easy material. (E!, 8 p.m.)

1600 Penn begins its real season run now! As opposed to a few weeks ago, which was just practice. (NBC, 9:30 p.m.)


Friday

Borealis is a new TV series produced by Space, which takes place in a “not-so-distant” future where the icecaps have melted and where the Northwest Passage is open for business (so, next year or so?), and a small renegade town called Borealis sets up shop to service the passing-by freighters in this new, much warmer Arctic. It’s an interesting enough premise and we are officially curious, even if they are needlessly throwing in potential alien artifacts being recovered underneath the melting permafrost, or stuff like that. (9 p.m.)


The Weekend

Ricky Gervais will not be hosting this year’s Golden Globe Awards on account of last year he was cautious and therefore boring. Instead, this year will be hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, who will probably be cautious and therefore also boring, but less so than Gervais because unlike Gervais they are naturally charming people. (CTV, 8 p.m. Sunday)

Pete Rose: Hits and Mrs. is a new TLC show (of course! Thank you, TLC, we thought we would go a whole week without pointing out how crap you were, but you just got it in under the wire) about Pete Rose and his new fiance (who is about half his age) and judging from the trailers, apparently this show is mostly about Pete Rose begging to be let into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Televisualist agrees that Pete Rose should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame, but who needed to see a show about that? (10 p.m. Sunday)

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