Televisualist: You Can't Stop The Rock
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Televisualist: You Can’t Stop The Rock

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.

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PICTURED: The Rock, who is host of “The Hero,” and nine people who are not The Rock.


Tonight is game seven of the NBA Eastern Conference Finals, and the story of this series so far has been “okay, can LeBron James win a playoff series against a top-level team like the Indiana Pacers all by himself when the rest of his team basically is useless” and the answer, apparently, is “about half the time, yes.” Of course, if Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh and Ray Allen and Shane Battier actually show up like they want to play basketball (which has not been happening), then this game should be a cakewalk for the Miami Heat, but if they don’t, then they just have to rely on the best basketball player alive to win the entire series for them. The scary part is that LeBron James is actually potentially capable of doing this, and this series has been unbelievable as a result. The winner will go up against the San Antonio Spurs, and we’re kind of rooting for the Heat simply because we want to see the best basketball player of his generation go up against the best basketball player of the previous generation (Tim Duncan, who’s 37 and playing like he’s 24). (TSN, 8:30 p.m.)

For all six of you who are deeply invested in the life of former-Hugh-Hefner-girlfriend and now just-a-reality-TV-star-for-no-reason-other-than-being-a-former-Hugh-Hefner-girlfriend Kendra Wilkinson, Kendra On Top premieres. For the rest of you: thank god you aren’t one of those six people! (Slice, 9 p.m.)

Mistresses is basically Desperate Housewives except all the protagonist characters are “other women” cheating with guys who are married. Refreshing racial politics aside (e.g. not treating interracial relationships like they’re somehow scandalous or impressive), we’re curious to see if this show is moralized out of existence in weeks or becomes a smash hit precisely because of all the cheating. It’s a test case! (ABC, 10 p.m.)

Back again: Teen Wolf, which has its own cult following, mostly because it’s about handsome boys who turn into wolves. We’re not saying that that’s a thing, but: it’s a thing. (MuchMusic, 10 p.m.)


America’s Got Talent returns for another round of…talenting? Talentry? Talentosity? Anyway, you know the drill by now: the tryout episodes are the best parts of this show because that’s when the acts are still fresh and new and exciting. So now is when you should watch it, if you’re gonna watch it at all. (City, 9 p.m.)

Returning for a fifth season: The Real Housewives of Atlanta, on Slice of course. Nobody should be shocked by this. (10 p.m.)


Toddlers and Tiaras, season-premiering tonight, seems oddly quaint now in the post-Honey Boo Boo era. Honey Boo Boo was and is the apotheosis of all things toddler-pageant-related and everything else basically pales in comparison. If this show can’t find us a four-year-old meth-addicted pageant competitor, then what is the point of it now, we ask you. (TLC, 9 p.m.)

The Good Buy Girls is a new reality show about women who work on a home shopping channel, so it’s a reality show about people who already work as themselves on television, making it a sort of reality show ouroboros. Go ahead, Wikipedia that reference, we’re not going anywhere. (TLC, 10 p.m.)


Be The Boss Canada is the Canadian version of the American reality show wherein franchise employees compete in order to win their very own franchise, which is just another sign that the revolution cannot come soon enough, really. (W, 9 p.m.)

Hey, Slice picked up some reality shows that aren’t just trashy docu-soaps! First, The Hero, which is a competition show wherein The Rock asks contestants to be heroic by having them do stunts and not take bribes and the like. This show was a lot better when it was Who Wants To Be A Superhero? and it was Stan Lee rather than The Rock. (9 p.m.)

Immediately after The Hero you can watch 72 Hours, where people are stranded in the middle of nowhere and have to use survival skills so they can search for hidden caches of money. It’s your standard “let’s do Survivor but more extreme!” type of show. (Slice, 10 p.m.)


The Simpsons rerun of the week: “She of Little Faith,” wherein Lisa becomes a Buddhist. “Lenny and Carl? You guys are Buddhists?” “Oh, yeah. If I didn’t have inner peace, I’d go completely psycho on all you guys all the time.” (CFMT, 6 p.m.)

The Weekend

This year’s host of the Tony Awards is once again Neil Patrick Harris, and really, you don’t need to know any more than that. (CBS, 8 p.m. Sunday)

So we just got through watching the internet explode over episode 9 of Game of Thrones, and the book-reading contigent of fans is just shaking their heads at all those fans who decided to just stick with watching the TV show so they wouldn’t get spoiled. Oh, you poor little doves. (HBO Canada, 9 p.m. Sunday)