The Week In TV: Justified's Back, and Pee-Wee (We Hope)
Timothy Olyphant is Justified in owning this FX series.
Santa brought the same thing he does every year: reruns of It's a Wonderful Life and The Sound of Music. This was the (very light) week in TV Land:
• Justified, one of the best new dramas of the year, has finally set a premiere date for its second season: Wednesday, February 9. This is a change from last year, when the show aired in FX's standard Tuesday 10 p.m. ET slot, which is where it cycles its major dramas. However, the new series Lights Out, starring Holt McCallany as an aging boxing champ trying to support his family, will be in the Tuesday slot when it premieres January 11. This isn't totally a bad thing, though: FX wants to make sure its new show gets a good shot by enjoying the Tuesday launch time slot that its other series received, and it's clearly confident in Justified's ability to stay strong with viewers on a new night. I'm just glad we get another 13 episodes of a fantastic neo-noir Western. Timothy Olyphant owns on this one.
• Paul Reubens' current Broadway incarnation of Pee-Wee Herman -- in The Pee-Wee Herman Show -- is coming to HBO next year. The show's been getting solid reviews, and enough time has passed since Reubens' regrettable tabloid era that he can enjoy the wave of 1980s-kid nostalgia that's responsible for everything from Tumblrs to the success of Shia LaBeouf. The special will tape shortly after the Broadway show ends its run on January 2; there's no airdate set yet for the show. For old time's sake, here's a clip from HBO's 1981 Pee-Wee special, which would be the basis for the later series:
• EGOT be damned: Tracy Morgan is going to miss several episodes of 30 Rock later this season as he recovers from kidney transplant surgery he had on December 10. The surgery apparently went well, but TV being a pretty cush job for someone at that level, he's getting several weeks from the writers to recover. The show will cover his absence by giving Tracy Jordan a meltdown after something good happens to him. Presumably it won't be an organ transplant.
• Grey's Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes has landed another pilot with ABC: an untitled hour about a professional fixer who works in crisis management, which is a fancy way of saying "a very angry lady who helps people after they screw up by yelling at their attackers." Rhimes' inspiration for the show is Judy Smith, a PR pro whose clients have included Monica Lewinsky, Michael Vick, and Senator Larry Craig. And we all totally love them now, right? So this show can't miss!
• Here's the trailer for FX's new series Wilfred. (At least, the video was working when this was written; the network's understandably unhappy about this thing bouncing around YouTube, so watch it while you can.) The show is a remake of a recent Australian series about a depressed man who meets a woman and strikes up a weird relationship with her dog, whom he perceives as a man in a dog suit. The premise and tone sound perfect for FX, and the show looks somewhere between Greg the Bunny and The Beaver. I'm curious:
• Another dead week ahead in the schedule; the week between Christmas and New Year's is a no man's land. If you're looking for New Year's Eve programming, though, avoid the tacky countdowns and head to TCM, which is having a Marx Brothers marathon starting at 7 p.m. CT. It beats the hell out of watching Ryan Seacrest try not to kill himself while interviewing Willow Smith.
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