Category Archives: What’s On TV

Finding the Voice of John Coltrane

“Independent Lens” (PBS, 10 p.m., check local listings) kicks off its 16th season with what would be a perfect “American Masters.” The absorbing and uplifting biography of jazz giant John Coltrane by director John Scheinfeld could fit as any well-done public television biography. But this one has the advantage of Coltrane’s sublime and groundbreaking saxophone [...]

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Also on Monday: Hollywood Blacklist

The Hollywood Blacklist gets a good look on Turner Classic Movies Mondays and Tuesdays this month, starting with the documentary “Hollywood on Trial” (8 p.m.). It leads to the films by some of the Hollywood Ten — Dalton Trumbo, screenwriter of “Our Vines Have Tender Grapes” (10 p.m.) and “Tender Comrade” (midnight), Edward Dmytryk and [...]

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Sunday TV: Frankie Shaw’s New ‘SMILF’

We will refrain from using the fake word “dramedy” to describes comedy with pathos, but the new , unfortunately named “SMILF” (Showtime, 10 p.m.) falls into that category. It stars, written by and directed by Frankie Shaw, who herself is a single mom. The series is about a woman on the verge of poverty in Boston, [...]

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Saturday TV: The Durst Lifetime Movie

Katharine McPhee is Kathleen Durst in the made-for-TV movie “The Lost Wife of Robert Durst” (Lifetime, 8 p.m.), about the first marriage of the real estate heir who was the subject of “The Jinx” and is on trial for another murder in California. Daniel Gillies also stars in the movie about the woman who went [...]

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Friday TV: More Margaret Atwood

Is Margaret Atwood the new queen of the limited series? Following the success of the adaptation of her “The Handmaid’s Tale” on Hulu, here is an adaptation of her lesser known novel “Alias Grace” (Netflix, streaming). based on a true story about an Irish immigrant and domestic servant in 19th century Canada charged with the [...]

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Thursday TV: Another Swipe at ‘S.W.A.T.’

The networks’ success in reviving old TV titles continues with “S.W.A.T.” (CBS, 10 p.m.), a TV drama that first aired for one season in 1975 before being turned into a 2003 action film. Shemar Moore, most recently from “Criminal Minds” stars as a tough cop in a division so militarized you might think it a [...]

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Wednesday TV: Breaking in a New Hawk

Helen Macdonald dealt with her grief over the sudden death of her father by rekindling their mutual love for wild birds and trying her hand at trying to train a particularly difficult bird of prey, a goshawk. Her experience a decade ago was turned into an international bestseller in “H for Hawk.” Her efforts to [...]

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Tuesday TV: Halloween and Beyond

Halloween means horror all day on Turner Classic Movies with “White Zombie” (8:45 a.m.), “Mad Love” (10 a.m.), “Dementia 13” (11:30 a.m.), “13 Ghosts” (1 p.m.), “The Fearless Vampire Killers” (2:30 p.m.), “House of Wax” (4:30 p.m.) and “Poltergeist” (6 p.m.). Primetime means Boris Karloff and Gloria Stuart in the 1932 “The Old Dark House” [...]

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Monday TV: Good Time for Poe Update

Denis O’Hare portrays Edgar Allan Poe on a timely edition of “American Masters” (PBS, 9 p.m., check local listings), who despite his connection to horror, actually published more comedies. Kathleen Turner narrates. Of course there are Halloween Dances and group numbers to “Monster Mash” on “Dancing with the Stars” (ABC, 8 p.m.). Nick Lachey finally [...]

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Sunday TV: ‘The Deuce’ Season Finale

It’s been the best thing on TV this season, with the richest array of characters and action, but there was something quite slow about “The Deuce” (HBO, 9 p.m.) developing its point, which was the shift from street walking to massage parlors and the rise of the porn movie industry. So I hope there’s a [...]

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