What to Watch Tonight: Once Upon a Time, Shameless S.2 Premiere, The Good Wife & More

by Jason the TVaholic on January 8, 2012

in Tonight on the Tube

News & Notes

Get Once Upon a Time Episodes via Amazon Instant VideoTonight, NBC has the series premiere of The Firm and PBS has the second season premiere of Downton Abbey.

Over on cable, Animal Planet has the series premiere of Gator Boys, BBC America has an Absolutely Fabulous special, Comedy Central has a Tom Papa: Live From New York City comedy special, Discovery Channel has a Secret Service Secrets special, Food Network has a The Big Waste special, History has the fifth season premiere of Ax Men and the series premiere of Cajun Pawn Stars, Showtime has the second season premiere of Shameless, the series premiere of House of Lies and the fifth season premiere of Californication, and TLC has the first season finale of All-American Muslim.

Listen to the Winter TV Preview 2012 over at TV times Three for more on some of the new and returning shows premiering tonight and over the next couple weeks.

Prime Picks

Once Upon a Time (ABC): New. Emma decides to run for sheriff, so Regina and Mr. Gold team up to play some dirty politics. Rumpelstiltskin is looking for a source of power to keep his son from going to war.

The Good Wife (CBS): New. A couple that had their divorce handled by Lockhart/Gardner is accusing the firm of trying to influence them for financial gain.

Pan Am (ABC): New. Something messes with Dean and Colette’s buddy romance. Kate is haunted by her last assignment. Kate has fallen for the congressman. Starts a minute after the hour and runs 59 minutes.

Solid Selections

The Simpsons (FOX): New. Homer gets his own political talk show after a video of one of his rants goes viral. Runs 30 minutes.

Leverage (TNT): New. The team stages a faux hostage crisis after getting caught in a highly guarded government facility. Plays again later.

House of Lies (Showtime): Series Premiere. Don Cheadle and Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars) star in this show about a team of management consultants. In this episode they head to New York to figure out how to turn things around for a financial institution that was part of the housing scandal. Runs 35 minutes. Plays again later. Was very much looking forward to this show and after watching the first three episodes was pretty disappointed. They try to make some of the characters sympathetic with back-story and family story, but nobody is very likable. I’m not really sure what the point of the show is and not sure I’m going to watch much more to see if I can find one.
Californication (Showtime): Season Premiere. Hank is living in New York and heads to Los Angeles after a bad break up and an offer to write a movie. Starts five minutes after the half hour and runs 30 minutes. Plays again later. No other show on TV has a more fitting title than this one.

Other Options

  • Angry Boys (HBO): New. Two episodes play tonight. Both play again later.
  • Desperate Housewives (ABC): New. Bree is thinking of ending things after being abandoned by her friends. Gaby starts to think that maybe Carlos isn’t only involved in one murder. Lynette confesses something to Tom. Runs 61 minutes.
  • The Firm (NBC): Series Premiere. Mitch McDeere decides to leave witness protection 10 years after the events of the film The Firm that starred Tom Cruise. This version stars Josh Lucas as Mitch. Once out he ends up in the middle of it all over again. Runs two hours. It moves to its regular night and time following the Thursday night comedy block starting January 12th. I am interested to see what they’ve done here, since it is a continuation and not a re-imaging. What about you?
  • Shameless (Showtime): Season Premiere. Fiona is working as a waitress at a club and hanging out with a young executive. Debbie is running a daycare. Plays again later. I find this to be a very compelling show, yet with one aspect that just boggles my mind that it gets shown on TV and nobody else seems to think its a problem. Yet, if you like what you saw in season one, well season two is more of the same.

Sports Notes

  • CBS has college basketball action with Wisconsin at Michigan and later NFL Playoffs action with the Pittsburgh Steelers at the Denver Broncos in the second playoff game today.
  • FOX has NFL Playoffs action with Atlanta Falcons at the New York Giants in the first playoff game today.
  • ESPN has college football action with the GoDaddy.com Bowl featuring Arkansas State at Northern Illinois.
  • NBA TV has a game tonight.
  • NBC Sports Net has NHL action tonight.

TV Marathons

A&E has seven episodes of Criminal Minds tonight.
BBC America has eight episodes of The Tudors.
BET has 24 episodes of The Game.
Centric has 12 episodes of Miami Vice.
TNT has 10 episodes of Law & Order early.
USA Network has 14 episodes of NCIS.

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