There's only one show that rules our screens this week, and it's the longest-running science fiction series ever. The entire week is crammed with celebrations of Doctor Who's 50th anniversary, including a dramatization of the early years, and a meeting of titans. Check out clips and details from all this week's TV!
Top image: Doctor Who
Check out two new clips — Steven's "chasing pants" music is my new ringtone. First, Kee-Oth the Blood Demon kidnaps Jake, and throws him into a pit, so Finn has to team up with Lady Rainicorn, using a videotape that reveals how to get into Kee-Oth's dimension. Then at 8 PM, Steven gets hold of a mystical shard that brings any item of clothing to life — and uses it to help a Boardie kid with his grueling job. Apparently Steven is doing pretty well, since Cartoon Network just ordered 13 more episodes. Also, there's a new Regular Show at 7:30 and a new Mad at 8:30.
Almost Human (8 PM, Fox):
So what did you think of the series premiere last night? Is this a worthy successor to Fringe? You get another chance to decide about that tonight, when Kennex and Dorian investigate a murder and missing persons case that lead them into the steamy, tawdry world of "sexbots." Woo hoo.
Doctor Who: Tales from the TARDIS (9 PM, BBC America):
The week of Doctor Who celebrations begins with this brand new special about the show's history. Here's what to expect:
The special features exclusive interviews with principal cast members from the show's 50-year history, including actors who have played the Doctor: Matt Smith, David Tennant, Tom Baker, and Peter Davison, actors who have played companions: Jenna Coleman, Karen Gillan, Freema Agyeman, and William Russell, as well as the current lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat. The discussion includes how the actors got cast, how the roles changed their lives, how a 'regeneration' is recorded, and how filming the show in the 60's compares to today.
There's also a marathon of The Doctors Revisited specials, focusing on the first ten Doctors, all day.
Beauty and the Beast (9 PM, The CW):
This week, Vincent and Cat celebrate Thanksgiving with Cat's dad, to get information about Vincent's missions — but then Gabe and Tori crash the celebration and there's not enough turducken to go around. You don't want to deprive a Beast of turducken, that's a bad scene right there.
And here's where the shorter 13-episode first season starts to pay off, as the storyline seems to be moving forward at a brisk clip. Also, check out creepy possessed John Cho! Here's what's afoot: "Ichabod, Abbie, Captain Irving and Jenny Mills (guest star Lyndie Greenwood) join forces and face the Headless Horseman. While staring down this nemesis, Ichabod is shocked by game-changing information about the Horseman's true motive."
The Science of Doctor Who (10 PM, BBC America):
And then there's this, featuring rockstar physicist Brian Cox: "A former rock star and Britain's popular TV physicist, Professor Brian Cox explores the universe of the world's favorite Time Lord when he takes the audience on a journey into the wonderful universe of Doctor Who, with the help of celebrity guests. In this exclusively recorded special from the lecture theatre of the Royal Institution of Great Britain, Brian reveals the science behind the spectacle and explains the physics that allows Doctor Who to travel through space and time. Fun, but filled with real science, it's a special night for Who fans and anyone with a thirst for understanding."
Also on TV tonight: There's a new Packages from Planet X on Disney XD at 9:30 PM. There's a new Castle on ABC at 10 PM.
BBC America is showing a marathon of the Ninth Doctor's stories all day.
The long-awaited "Thor cross-over" episode. Here's a clip, just in case you missed it when we ran it earlier today. The most notable thing about this episode is that it was directed by Jonathan Frakes, who may be the subject of a lot of mocking memes for his performance as Riker, but who has also become one of the best directors working in television.
We're going to meet another version of Young Dean, via another set of flashbacks!
YOUNG DEAN — Dean (Jensen Ackles) gets a call from an old friend named Sonny (guest star Blake Gibbons) asking for help with a ghost. Sonny runs a home for delinquent boys, and Dean was sent there for stealing food when he was younger. Sam (Jared Padalecki) is stunned he never knew this about his brother and asks for more information, but Dean dodges his questions. Another murder occurs while Sam and Dean are at the house, so they scramble to find the culprit before anyone else dies. Meanwhile, Dean looks up an old girlfriend (guest star Erin Karpluk) and recalls his time at the house.
James Woods hosts a brand new show about the future of everything, starting out with an episode about the "robot revolution." Here's the logline:
What if you could read minds using a Bluetooth device, or have your own personal superhuman Iron Man-style suit? How about curing cancer by inserting a "super chip" into the human body? What was once considered science fiction is more of a reality than you may think. A future that once existed solely in the human imagination is beginning to take shape. Science Channel and celebrated actor James Woods take an unprecedented look at the next breakthroughs in science and technology.
Person of Interest (10 PM, CBS):
Part two of the three-part event. And a major clue to what happens next could come from the fact that Fusco's son Lee is appearing, according to the cast list. Here's what's up: " Danger closes in when the battle to bring the crime organization HR to justice reaches new heights. Also, when The Machine suddenly gives out Reese's number, the POI team faces their greatest threat yet."
Also on TV tonight: There's a new Total Drama: All Stars on Cartoon Network at 7 PM, followed by Amazing World of Gumball and Uncle Grandpa. Lady Gaga has a release party for her new album on The CW at 8 PM. There's also the midseason finale of Ravenswood on ABC Family at 8 PM. A new Crash & Bernstein airs on Disney XD at 8:30 PM. If you subscribe to DirecTV, you can see a new (to Americans) episode of Black Mirror at 9 PM. Also at 9, Syfy has a special "nude body-painting" episode of Face-Off, and Discovery has a new Doomsday Preppers. At 10 PM, Spike has a new episode of Criss Angel: BeLIEve.
BBC America is having a Tenth Doctor marathon all day.
Some monsters left over from the girls' failed experiments get together and hatch a plan to take over everything. And then Cyborg, Beast Boy and Robin go on a "bro-cation," but then Dr. Light attacks. (Cue rant about how sad it is that we lost Young Justice but we get endless bro-cation-filled episodes of this show.)
As a change from the series of "Making Stuff —-er" episodes, this show is having an episode about "The Edge of Space," the boundary zone between the Earth and outer space, where "some of nature's most puzzling and alluring phenomena" happen. That's followed by a second episode, "Asteroid: Doomsday or Payday?", in which we explore scenarios in which asteroids either destroy humanity, or slather some of us in cheddar.
Revolution (8 PM, NBC):
The midseason finale. Let's hope this show ends its fall run of episodes with a bang! Here's what they're telling us: " NEVILLE REACTS TO A SURPRISE - The relationship between Rachel (Elizabeth Mitchell) and Gene (Stephen Collins) remains strained as Charlie (Tracy Spiridakos) shows her mom how much she's grown. Meanwhile, Neville (Giancarlo Esposito) gives Jason (JD Pardo) a determined proclamation."
Arrow (8 PM, The CW):
Hot damn, it's the return of Seth Gabel as Count Vertigo:
MOIRA FIGHTS FOR HER LIFE; THE COUNT RETURNS — Oliver (Stephen Amell) is concerned when a mysterious illness sweeps the city, infecting hundreds of people, including Diggle (David Ramsey). Oliver discovers Vertigo in Diggle's blood and realizes The Count (guest star Seth Gabel) has broken out of prison and is once again distributing his drug. Meanwhile, Moira (Susanna Thompson) goes on trial for her participation in the Undertaking. ADA Adam Donner (guest star Dylan Bruce) collapses in court with Vertigo symptoms so Laurel (Katie Cassidy) must step in and try the case against Moira. Oliver is torn between standing by his family during the trial and catching The Count. However, things change when Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) follows a lead and walks straight into a trap set by The Count.
Tomorrow People (9 PM, The CW):
At this point, I'm extremely leery about any episode whose synopsis basically begins with "Stephen does something stupid and reckless":
NO MANS LAND — When Stephen (Robbie Amell) decides to have some fun with his newfound powers, Jedikiah (Mark Pellegrino) takes extreme measures to make sure it doesn't happen again. After John (Luke Mitchell) and Russell (Aaron Yoo) return from their trip, John feels a strange tension between himself and Cara Peyton List). Stephen tries to handle a new and dangerous breakout on his own, but finds himself in over his head and needing help from his fellow Tomorrow People. Meanwhile, Stephen has a moment of clarity when it comes to his father, and is more determined than ever to figure out what happened to him.
American Horror Story: Coven (10 PM, FX):
Sounds like even more sexytimes this week: "Fiona finds new purpose in a dangerous love affair. A night out with LaLaurie leads Queenie to question her place in the Coven. Cordelia makes a fateful decision about her mother."
Also on TV tonight: PBS has a new Nova at 9 PM. Comedy Central has a new South Park at 10 PM. Science has a new How the Earth Works at 10 PM.
Part one of a two-part marathon of the Eleventh Doctor's stories from Doctor Who on BBC America, all day today.
Looks like Alice is making it home, and this show is becoming a bit of a Liminal Fantasy.
Vampire Diaries (8 PM, The CW):
Remember that college subplot? It's back, full force. Also, brace yourself for a Stefan/Katherine romance. Or something.
THE PARTY'S OVER — At Whitmore College, Elena (Nina Dobrev) and Caroline (Candice Accola) decide it's time to throw a big party, but their plans are interrupted when Jesse (guest star Kendrick Sampson) suddenly needs Caroline's help. At Elena's request, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) comes up with an effective method to get Wes (guest star Rick Cosnett) to answer his questions. At the party, Elena finds that she and Aaron (guest star Sean Sipos) have a lot in common, and Caroline grows more concerned about Jesse. Meanwhile, Katherine (Nina Dobrev) does a favor for Matt (Zach Roerig) and manages to get through to Stefan (Paul Wesley), who is still struggling to overcome the events of the summer. Finally, Bonnie (Kat Graham) does her best to cope with her new reality, and Damon makes a terrifying discovery about a secret society.
The Returned (9 PM, Sundance):
Victor, the creepy kid, gets flustered for once, as we learn more about his past in a dark and unsettling episode.
Also on TV tonight: Cartoon Network has a new Legends of Chima at 7 PM, followed by a new Dragons: Defenders of Berk. CBS has a new Big Bang Theory at 8 and a new Elementary at 10. At 9 PM, The CW has a new Reign. At 10 PM, there's a new Unsealed: Alien Files on Discover America.
Part two of the Eleventh Doctor marathon on BBC America, all day today.
The one-hour season finale! Which already debuted online, and you can read our reactions at the link. For some reason, it's airing a week after its online debut.
The Neighbors (8:30 PM, ABC):
The Thanksgiving episode! In which Marty's father suddenly turns up, because he's getting divorced and wants to come live with Marty — just as Jackie's Zabvronian parents arrive for a visit.
The U.S. debut of the docudrama about the early years of Doctor Who, which we've been gobsmacked by our early glimpses of. This is going to be the best love letter to the show's creation you could possibly hope for.
What do you get when you mix C.S. Lewis with H.G. Wells, and sprinkle in a bit of Father Christmas? An alien Time Lord exploring space and time in a Police Box spaceship called the "TARDIS" (Time And Relative Dimension in Space). On November 23, 1963, a television legend began when the very first episode of Doctor Who was broadcast on BBC One. Fifty years later, the genesis story is retold in a new BBC AMERICA co-production film celebrating the 50th anniversary of the franchise.
This is preceded, at 8 PM, by a special called Doctor Who Explained, which sounds like a primer on the show featuring a lot of castmembers past and present.
Nikita (9 PM, The CW):
This massively underrated show is beginning its final run of episodes, with Nikita in a situation that would be very familiar to fans of Doctor Who's "The Deadly Assassin." Check out a bloody awesome clip above, and here's what's up:
THE FINAL FIGHT BEGINS — Nikita (Maggie Q) is still on the run after she was framed for the assassination of the President of the United States. Dale, a reporter (guest star Todd Grinnell) from the news channel ENN, starts questioning what really happened that night. Nikita sees this as an opportunity to clear her name so she re-enters the country to talk to Dale but walks right into a trap set by Amanda (Melinda Clarke). The team is alerted and Michael (Shane West) sets out to find Nikita before Amanda does. While Birkoff (Aaron Stanford) and Ryan (Noah Bean) help Michael from their new mobile office, a high-tech aircraft, Alex (Lyndsy Fonseca) stakes out a human-trafficking ring and learns The Shop is involved. Things go south and Alex is surprised when Owen/Sam (Devon Sawa) shows up at the scene.
Haven (10 PM, Syfy):
A monster out of folklore is hunting people in Haven, so the Darkside Seekers, who hunt ghosts, come to town — and they make life difficult for Audrey and her friends.
Also on TV tonight: Disney has a new Dog With a Blog at 8:30 PM. Another episode of Misfits airs on Logo at 1 AM.
The long-awaited two-part season premiere! In which: "Princess Twilight is busy adjusting to her new wings and new role in Equestria when Celestia and Luna go missing. Meanwhile, her friends are all having unusual troubles of their own and it will take all of them working together to help find the missing royals."
Please note — this is simulcast around the world, meaning that it airs at 11:50 AM on the West Coast. Also, BBC America will have an encore presentation at 7 PM, featuring additional material in the form of exclusive interviews with David Tennant and Matt Smith. Here's what's up:
The Doctors (Matt Smith and David Tennant) embark on their greatest adventure across space and time. In 2013, something terrible is awakening in London's National Gallery; in 1562, a murderous plot is afoot in Elizabethan England; and somewhere in space an ancient battle reaches its devastating conclusion. All of reality is at stake as the Doctor's own dangerous past comes back to haunt him.
Kristin's Christmas Past (8 PM, Lifetime):
Calling this out because we only just had a Christmas-themed Groundhog Day knockoff TV movie a couple weeks ago, and now here's another time-warping Christmas storyline. Seriously, it's bizarre. Here's the logline: "Estranged from her family, Kristin (SHIRI APPLEBY) falls asleep alone on Christmas Eve only to wake up and discover it's Christmas morning 1996 and she has to relive the worst Christmas of her life! But this time, Kristin decides to do things differently to change not only her imperfect past, but also her less- than-perfect future."
A brand new show from the creator of Misfits, Howard Overman. And this time, instead of juvenile delinquents, he's tackling Greek Gods. (Will we be able to tell the difference?) This show has already been airing in the U.K., but it's finally coming to our screens, and here's what happens this week: "When Jason (Jack Donnelly) goes in search of his father, he washes up on the shores of a strange and mysterious land. A world of mythical creatures, soothsaying oracles and palaces so vast it was said they were built by giants; this is the lost city of Atlantis. But it seems the newcomer has chosen the wrong time to arrive in the fabled realm and Jason soon finds himself at the mercy of a deadly ritual, from which there is no escape…"
What's more exciting than a Sharknado? Syfy is hoping you'll somehow think, "a Stonado!" This is described as "a disaster movie about a freak weather system which hurls deadly boulders." Although maybe they're just being really honest about the state in which you're likely to be watching this.
Also on TV today: Disney XD has a new Packages from Planet X at 8:30 AM. Cartoon Network, meanwhile, has a new Ben 10 Omniverse at 9:30 AM. Nickelodeon has a new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles at 11 AM, a new Monsters Vs. Aliens at noon, and a new Power Rangers at 1 PM. Hub Network has a new Sabrina: Secrets of a Teenage Witch at noon, a new Kaijudo at 2 PM, a new Spooksville at 6:30 PM, and a new R.L. Stine at 7:30 PM. There's a new episode of superhero show The Thundermans on Nickelodeon at 9 PM. Also at 9 PM: Discovery has a new special, Penguins: Waddle all the Way, and the Weather Channel has the season finale of Tipping Points, focusing on projections about a water crisis in India. And there's a new Axe Cop on Fox at 11 PM, followed by the premiere of a new show called Golan the Insatiable, about a "Godlord" trapped in suburbia.
Doctor Who: The Doctors Revisited (8 PM, BBC America):
Nope, the Doctor Who celebration is not over yet. The monthly series of one-hour specials about each of the stars of Doctor Who reaches the current (for a little while longer) lead actor, Matt Smith: "The Doctors Revisited begins with Matt Smith, Jenna Coleman (companion Clara Oswald), Karen Gillan (companion Amy Pond), Arthur Darvill (companion Rory Williams), lead writer and executive producer Steven Moffat, among others, examining the human side of this Doctor and taking a look at how his extraordinarily long life has affected him." That's followed by a special showing of "The Impossible Astronaut"/"Day of the Moon".
Check out a new clip from "Dead Weight," in which a camp outside the prison spells the beginning of "a new and scary chapter."
Witches of East End (10 PM, Lifetime):
Is this show settling into being a serviceable horror-comedy-soap? In this week's episode: "Wendy and Joanna fight over a secret that Joanna has kept for more than a hundred years; the shifter threatens Freya; Ingrid suspects that Mike has ulterior motives."
Also on TV today: Disney XD has a new Hulk and the Agents of SMASH at 11 AM, and a new Avengers Assemble at 11:30. Nicktoons has a new Digimon Fusion at 11:30 AM, followed by a new Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal. Fox has its usual raft of animated TV shows in the evening. At 9 PM, Ion has a TV movie called Defending Santa, where Santa Claus is arrested for a crime he didn't commit and has to win his trial in time to make his annual sleigh ride. Also at 9 PM, Discovery has a special called Alaska: The Last Frontier. There's a new Masters of Sex on Showtime at 10 PM. At midnight, there's a new Comic Book Men on AMC.