Tuesday TV: Amusing ‘Trial & Error’

Trial_and_ErrorOverdue satire of the overpopulate true crime saga comes courtesy “Trial & Error” (NBC, 10 and 10:30 p.m.), which recalls the mockumentary heyday of “The Office” with the small town sweetness of “Parks & Recreation.”

John Lithgow is swell as the defendant in the murder of his wife, piling up suspicion as he maintains his clueless innocence. But it’s the ensemble that brings life to the show, from the dim assistants played by Steven Boyer and Sherri Shepherd, who has an abundance of maladies that impair her job., to the tough prosecutor, played by Jayma Mays.

The straight man is Nicholas D’Agosto, a New Yorker who is sent down to defend Lithgow’s character and must find his way through these very eccentric characters. It’s light, and silly, and strikes just the right tone.

You might need the chuckle after the first season finale of “This Is Us” (NBC, 9 p.m.), the family drama that many have found engrossing (while others of us have found just manipulative). Tonight, Jack goes to Cleveland to make up with Rebecca on the night of her first big gig with the band. Then Kate, Randall and Kevin make big decisions about their futures — and season two!3

It’s the season, finale, too, for “The Real O’Neals” (ABC, 9:30 p.m.), where Shannon and Jimmy find a pregnancy test.

National Geographic has been doing a service by buying high profile documentaries, usually about the environment. Tonight’s installment, “Water & Power: A California Heist” (Nat Geo, 9 p.m.), executive produced by Alex Gibney and directed by Marina Zenovich, looks at the state’s water crisis (before the recent deluge).

Blind auditions finally end on “The Voice” (NBC, 8 p.m.).

Jess frets that Reagan is getting too obsessed with Nick on “New Girl” (Fox, 8 p.m.).

It’s St. Patrick’s Day on “The Middle” (ABC, 8 p.m.).

Eddie is too young to drink and has an adverse reaction at a sleepover on “Fresh Off the Boat” (ABC, 9 p.m.).

We apologize in advance to Asia for the Hong Kong trip by the “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” (Bravo, 9 p.m.).

Phil and Liz get a new assignment on “The Americans” (FX, 10 p.m.). Does it involve microwave spying?

The dance battle commences on “My Big Fat Fabulous Life” (TLC, 9 p.m.).

A special-ops Marine assaults six in a bar on “NCIS: New Orleans” (CBS, 9 p.m.).

Mrs. Adler coaches kickball on “Teachers” (TV Land, 10 p.m.).

“The Detour” (TBS, 10 p.m.) recalls the birth of the twins.

A new tech company moves into the building on “Detroiters” (Comedy Central, 10:30 p.m.).

A filmmaker is found dead on “Bones” (Fox, 9 p.m.).

Justin hatches a plan to get Mary Jane the anchor chair on “Being Mary jane” (BET, 10 p.m.).

There’s a Latin America theme to the cuisine on “Chopped” (Food, 10 p.m.).

Katie gives too much advice on “American Housewife” (ABC, 8:30 p.m.) and gets a new house guest.

Savannah has a car wreck on “Chrisley Knows Best” (USA, 10 p.m.).3

“Killing Fields” (Discovery, 10 p.m.) recalls the Baton Rouge Serial Killer.

The second episode of “People Icons” (ABC, 10 p.m.) concentrates on regular people who survived horrific scenarios.

A closed case is reopened as a murder on “NCIS” (CBS, 8 p.m.).

“DC’s Legends of Tomorrow” (The CW, 9 p.m.) travels to NASA for the 1970 launch of Apollo 13.

The five remaining contestants on “Face Off” (Syfy, 9 p.m.) have to create comedy duos.

Barry turns to the speed force on “The Flash” (The CW, 8 p.m.).

Shannon and Will announce their engagement on “The Fosters” (Freeform, 8 p.m.).

Andrew Zimmern goes to Taipei, Morocco and Paris for “Bizarre Foods” (Travel, 9 p.m.).

Crime novelist Michael Connelly is guest programmer on Turner Classic Movies. HIs choices: “Klute” (8 p.m.), “The French Connection” (10 p.m.), “Night Moves” (midnight), “Shaft” (2 a.m.) and “Shaft’s Big Score!” (4 a.m.).

For more good Connelly stuff, there is also two seasons of his “Bosch” (Amazon, streaming) online.

The NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament begins modestly with a pair of play-in games: Mount St. Mary’s vs. New Orleans (truTV, 6:40 p.m.) and Kansas State vs. Wake Forest (truTV, 9:10 p.m.).

First round play begins in the NIT, with North Carolina- Greensboro at Syracuse (ESPN, 7 p.m.), Valparaiso at Illinois (ESPN2, 7:15 p.m.), Oakland at Clemson (ESPNU, 8 p.m.), Indiana at Georgia Tech (ESPN, 9 p.m.), Kansas State vs. are Forest (truTV, 9:10 p.m.), Richmond at Alabama (ESPN2, 9:15 p.m.), Boise State at Utah (ESPNU, 10 p.m.) and Cal State Bakersfield at California (ESPN2, 11:15 p.m.).

Pro basketball includes Detroit at Cleveland (NBA, 7 p.m.) and Philadelphia at Golden State (NBA, 10:30 p.m.).

Hockey has Chicago at Montreal (NBC Sports, 7:30 p.m.).

Spring baseball includes Atlanta vs. Philadelphia (MLB, 1 p.m.) and San Francisco vs. Cleveland (MLB, 4 p.m.).

Second round action in the World Baseball Classic has Cuba vs. Japan (MLB, 6 a.m.), Dominican Republic vs. Puerto Rico (MLB, 9 p.m.) and Netherlands vs. Cuba (MLB, midnight).

Daytime Talk

Kelly Ripa: Elizabeth Banks, Jonny Lee Miller, Nick Viall & Vanessa Grimaldi, Peter Gros, Josh Gad. The View: Trae Crowder, Corey Ryan Forrester, Drew Morgan. The Talk: Little Big Town, Carnie Wilson. Harry Connick: Milo Ventimiglia, Randi Fenoli, Philip Winchester. Ellen DeGeneres: Dax Shepard, Ryan Leaf, Rag’n’Bone Man. Wendy Williams: Tamar Braxton, Vince Herbert. The Real: Merle Dandridge, Lynn Whitfield, Keith David, Michelle Williams.

Late Talk

Stephen Colbert: Neil deGrasse Tyson, Rick Ross. Jimmy Kimmel: Dax Shepard, Sofia Black-D’Elia, Thomas Keller. Jimmy Fallon: Adam Levine, Josh Gad, Maroon 5. Seth Meyers: Ewan McGregor, Zoe Kravitz, Jon Pardi, Nicko McBrain. James Corden: Gillian Jacobs, Jerrod Carmichael, Lea Michelle. Carson Daly: Michael Ware, Getter, Rachel Keller (rerun). Trevor Noah: Valerie Jarrett. Conan O’Brien: Aubrey Plaza, Darren Criss, Old 97’s.


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