Televisualist: We're "Internet Popular"
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Televisualist: We’re “Internet Popular”

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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The cast of “Total Divas.” Not pictured: AJ Lee, the only female wrestler who actually makes money for the WWE and who therefore is too important for this reality show.

Monday

Brother vs. Brother is a home-improvement show where Jonathan Scott and Drew Scott (who are brothers, specifically “the Property Brothers”) captain teams of home-improvement experts and gradually eliminate them, with the last non-brother person standing winning $50,000. Someone wants to watch this, we just don’t know who. (W, 8 p.m.)

Tuesday

The Simpsons rerun of the week: “The Debarted,” wherein Bart thinks there’s a snitch trying to get him in trouble at school. “Young man, I’m going to be on you like a numerator on a denominator.” (Comedy Network, 8:30 p.m.)

After three seasons on network TV, Who Do You Think You Are? transitions to cable, because watching celebrities learn about their ancestors is only “cable popular.” This week: Kelly Clarkson learns about her great-great-great grandfather’s impact on American history! See? Cable popular. (TLC, 9 p.m.)

Wednesday

Dance Kids ATL is about a hip-hop dance studio in Atlanta that teaches kids how to dance, so basically it’s Dance Moms minus the horrible moms, which marks the first time in over a decade that TLC has actually improved on another television show. (TLC, 10 p.m.)

Top Chef Masters is always fun, because the high-end chefs competing are so often flabbergasted to discover that the various Top Chef challenges are actually extremely hard and it’s not just because the regular Top Chef competitors are all just starting to make their marks. Hubris: the best bit of reality competition shows. (Food Network, 10 p.m.)

Thursday

This week in West Wing reruns: “Two Cathedrals,” which has the dramatic ending to end all dramatic endings and Martin Sheen shouting at God Himself, so yeah, it’s pretty choice. (CITS, 8 p.m.)

Concluding this week: Hell’s Kitchen. We haven’t watched this season really, but we assume the remaining two competitors are the same people who were obviously going to be the only serious contenders in the premiere, because that’s how this show rolls. (City, 8 p.m.)

Friday

It’s kind of hard to believe that Broken Arrow is a John Woo film (the second he made in North America after Hard Target) since it’s painfully generic: barely any scenes with a guy shooting two pistols and a painful lack of doves in flight. Seriously, what’s a John Woo film without some doves? Not a John Woo film, I tell you what. (FX, 7 p.m.)

Tonight, you can watch New Kids on the Block & Backstreet Boys: Live From the 02, because the girls who grew up screaming for those two boy bands are now the generation programming music channels. (MuchMoreMusic, 9 p.m.)

The Weekend

Two years ago, Televisualist made a heap of fun of Unforgettable, the police procedural whose hook is “the lead character can remember things really well,” and then it got cancelled because, well, it was stupid. But now they’ve brought it back! So now you can watch all the memory-related policing you like! (CTV, 9 p.m. Sunday)

Total Divas seems kind of weird: it’s a reality show about the WWE’s female wrestlers, who on main WWE programming are usually treated—and disappointingly so—as a sort of joke or comic aside, rather than Proper Serious Wrestlers. (Granted, Proper Serious Wrestling in the WWE usually includes all sorts of jokes that are subpar at best, including racial and ethnic jokes and all sorts of homophobia, in large part because the WWE’s overall story direction is still largely done by white men in their early seventies. Gratuitous sexism is unfortunately expected as part of the package.) The reason Total Divas is weird is because the WWE has been advertising it for months on their main programming, which leads one to wonder if the WWE’s story-driven style of programming (e.g. “it is made up”) will be applied to what is ostensibly a “reality” show. Granted, most reality shows have a fairly… elastic idea of what counts as “reality” in the first place, but scripted storylines would, we think, be exactly counter to the idea. Then again, it’s E! so they probably don’t care in the slightest. (E! Canada, 10 p.m. Sunday)

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