Monday TV: New ‘Murder in the First’

mitf-epguide-pilot-640x360-625x340_050720141145Like his old “Murder One,” years ago, Stephen Bochco’s new “Murder in the First” (TNT, 10 p.m.) shares a number and the belief in creating an entire season out of one crime. By now, that’s fairly common, but recent serialized yarns have surpassed this, which has the feel of a crime-of-the-week procedural but doesn’t have the payoff at each episode’s end.

Throughout, it’s a saga of murders connected to a rude internet brat (Tom Felton — Draco Malfoy all grown up!) and investigated by a team played by Kathleen Robertson and Taye Diggs, whose own personal problems threaten to overwhelm the main story and in the cast of Diggs’ character, mourning the death of his wife, bring the whole thing down.

One thing “Murder in the First” is really lacking is humor, which is a shame since that’s what a lot of its police procedurals are built on, particularly “Major Crimes” (TNT, 9 p.m.) which returns its ensemble cast largely introduced during “The Closer” to continue to solve crimes under Mary McDonnell’s Capt. Raydor.

Partly out of guilt, partly out of love, and partly out of a sincere belief that his work deserves a wider audience, the actor Robert De Niro recounts in a documentary the struggling career of his father and namesake, who rose among the American expressionists of the postwar period but became obscure as his colleagues turned completely abstract and thy were all left behind by the pop artists. Because he left behind a lot of film when he died 20 years ago, “Remembering the Artist: Robert De Niro” (HBO, 9 p.m.) is a fairly good portrait of the era, as well as a warm family remembrance.

Diane Sawyer’s interview “Hillary Clinton: Public and Private” (ABC, 9 p.m.) is the first of the book promotion TV blitz, which earns the former Secretary of State some electable good will if only by keeping “The Bachelorette” (ABC, 8 p.m.) down to one hour. (That hour is essentially a recap, which is what last week’s two hour episode turned out to be in the end, telling you won didn’t get the rose rather than showing you so they could pay tribute to a suitor who died after taping — and leaving the show after a rocky scene.)

Far be it for ABC to pre-empt “Mistresses” (ABC, 10 p.m.) with Clinton; that’s already happened in the past.

Barack Obama, for his part, explains his views on climate change on the first season finale of “Years of Living Dangerously” (Showtime, 8 p.m.).

Louie looks to the past in tonight’s two episodes of “Louie” (FX, 10 and 10:30 p.m.) titled “Into the Woods” parts 1 and 2 and both extended so long, together they take up 90 minutes.

According to previews from last week’s episode, drones start firing on Jack on this week’s “24: Live Another Day” (Fox, 9 p.m.).

The Stanley Cup Finals retreat back to cable with Los Angeles at Rangers (NBC Sports, 8 p.m.) in Game 3. Which means NBC considers “American Ninja Warrior” (NBC, 9 p.m.) is considered to be a more important sporting event than the NHL.

With the World Cup starting there this week, it’s a good time for the former Monty Python member turned tourguide to visit: “Brazil with Michael Palin” (PBS, 8 and 9 p.m., check local listings).

The 20 remaining contestants on “MasterChef” (Fox 8 p.m.) have to took for an Army literally.

Robbie Amell and Jeff Davis guest star on “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” (The CW, 8 p.m.). No I never heard of them before, either.

A night of Richard Harris includes “Robin and Marian” (TCM, 8 p.m.), “Camelot” (TCM, 10 p.m.), “A Man Called Horse” (TCM, 1:15 p.m. and “Mutiny on the Bounty” (TCM, 3:15 a.m.).

Baseball includes Seattle at Tampa Bay (MLB, 1 p.m.) and Dodgers at Cincinnati (ESPN, 7 p.m.).

Daytime Talk

Kelly & Michael: Adam Savage & Jamie Hyneman, Nicki Minaj, Colbie Caillat, Taye Diggs. The View: Diane Sawyer, Austin Mahone, Mona Scott. The Talk: Cee-Lo Green, Lisa Ingrassia, Chi-Lan Lieu, Marie Osmond. Ellen DeGeneres: Jim Carrey, Christina Bianco, Nick Cannon, Ellie Kemper (rerun). Wendy Williams: Laverne Cox, Diana Madison.

Late Talk

David Letterman: Kelsey Grammer, Bill Scheft, Willie Nelson. Jimmy Fallon: Clint Eastwood, Jack White. Jimmy Kimmel: Dr. Phil McGraw, Sage Steele, Mo (rerun). Seth Meyers: Steve Buscemi, Jake Tapper, Sia. Craig Ferguson: Dennis Miller, Ashley Madekwe. Carson Daly: Kaiser Chiefs, Noah Gundersen (rerun). Tavis Smiley: Rep. Xavier Becerra, Jersey Vargas. Jon Stewart: Philip K. Howard. Stephen Colbert: Esther Perel. Arsenio Hall: Kevin Hall, Duane Martin, Bobby Brown, Fifth Harmony (rerun). Conan O’Brien: Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Grouplove. Chelsea Handler: Lena Headey, Dustin Ybarra, Arden Myrin, Ross Mathews.

 

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