Back in April, we wrote about Spike TV's "Bar Rescue" show coming to Raleigh to make over the Cashmere nightclub on Glenwood South (they also did a makeover of Characters Quarters in Garner, turning it into MoonRunners Saloon). What we didn't tell you about was all the drama going on behind the scenes, when the Cashmere (now Dual) bar owner had to fire his friend, who had previously been the manager of the club. Both men talked to us today about what went down in April and where things stand now. That episode of "Bar Rescue" is airing this Sunday at 9. (No word yet on when the Garner episode will air.)
Cult (8pm, CW) - Two more new episodes of "Cult." In the first, Stuart tasks Nate with deciphering Kellan's manuscript. At 9, the series finale in which Jeff makes a promise to Skye and Billy tries to persuade Kelly to kill Henry.
Camp (8pm, NBC) - A repeat of NBC's new camp comedy-drama, which debuted earlier this week.
American Masters: A Letter to Elia (9:30pm, UNC-TV) - This is from 2010, but it's brand new for those of us who missed it the first time. Martin Scorsese writes "A Letter to Elia," part profile of filmmaker Elia Kazan and part memoir about how Kazan's "On the Waterfront" and "East of Eden" impacted Scorsese as a young man. The doc features clips, photos and excerpts from Kazan's autobiography, as well as a speech Kazan gave on directing, a videotaped interview with Kazan and Scorsese's own commentary.
Continuum (10pm, Syfy) - Kiera's knowledge of the future helps her pursue a serial killer, but it also makes Carlos suspicious of how she's coming to her hunches.
Treehouse Masters (10pm, Animal Planet) - A family in Bedford, N.Y., spare no expense for a tree house that features a patio for barbecuing, a living room and a playroom with chalkboards.
Summer Camp (8pm, ABC Family) - Not to be confused with the drama "Camp" on NBC, this is a reality series in which adults go to summer came and take part in competitions inspired by classic camp games.
Motive (9pm, ABC) - The death of a health-food guru who was electrocuted in his hot tub is investigated.
Sharknado (9pm, Syfy) - You know this is gonna happen here soon: A freak storm brings hundreds of vicious, man-eating sharks ashore in Los Angeles, and a group of friends struggle to steer clear of their violent and destructive path. Starring Tara Reid!
Hollywood Game Night (10pm, NBC) - Contestants team up with celebrities to play a series of party games in this new competition show hosted by Jane Lynch. The first episode features players Lisa Kudrow and Matthew Perry (left), Martin Short, Kristen Bell, Daniel Dae Kim and Alyson Hannigan.
Showville (10pm, AMC) - Tonight, auditions take place in Mount Airy, N.C. That's right -- "Showville" went to Mayberry. More info.
Graceland (10pm, TNT) - Mike becomes more entrenched in Bello's outfit, and Briggs and Charlie pose as an amorous couple while investigating a mysterious drug supplier.
Rookie Blue (10pm, ABC) - Andy and Gail find a teenage boy tied up in the trunk of a car. Meanwhile, Swarek, Oliver and Chris track a gunman.
This week's episode of "Showville," which airs on AMC at 10 p.m. on Thursdays, was filmed at the Andy Griffith Playhouse in Mount Airy.
For the show, hosts Alec Mapa and Lisette Bustamante visit different towns across the country and hold open auditions for talent shows. Finalists are selected and mentored and then compete for a $10,000 prize.
AMC airs on channels 38, 622 and 1622 on Time Warner Cable; channel 254 on DirecTV; channels 795 and 1795 on AT&T U-verse; and channel 131 on Dish. If you don't have cable, you can watch the episode online after it airs on TV.
MasterChef (8pm, Fox) - Eva Longoria chooses Mexican ingredients for the mystery-box challenge. Later, the chefs whip up fish tacos for a large group of surfers at the beach, and the winning team receives tickets to the 2013 MLB All-Star game.
Nova: Building Pharaoh's Chariot (8pm, UNC-TV) - Experts build and test two replicas of ancient Egyptian chariots to learn whether, as some historians claim, the chariot revolutionized warfare and enabled Egypt's greatest era of conquest.
The Bridge (10pm, FX) - In this new series, based on a spectacular Scandinavian drama, two detectives -- one from the U.S. and one from Mexico -- must work together to track down a ruthless killer operating on both sides of the border. In the opening episode, a body is found on the bridge connecting El Paso and Juarez, Mexico. It stars Diane Kruger ("Inglorious Basterds") and Demin Bichir ("Weeds" "The Heat"). MINI REVIEW: I hate to be that person who gets all pretentious and claims to prefer the original foreign version of whatever American TV remake rolls around, but I'm gonna be that person. FX's "The Bridge" is very good, but after watching three episodes, for me it hasn't quite touched the Scandinavian version, "Bron/Broen." It's a great story and the performances here are also great, though I do prefer Sofia Helin's Det. Saga Norén to Kruger's Det. Sonya Cross. But that's nit-picking. If you like smart, complex dramas, check it out.
Camp (10pm, NBC) - A new comedy-drama series following campers and counselors at Little Otter Family Camp. In tonight's opener, the camp owner and director (played by Rachel Griffiths of "Brothers and Sisters") considers a buyout offer from a competing resort as she struggles to keep things afloat. Meanwhile, her 15-year-old son Buzz prepares for his first year as a counselor in training. MINI REVIEW: A surprisingly pleasant summer diversion that brings to mind some of the teen-sex-and-drugs-summer-camp movies like "Wet Hot American Summer" and "Meatballs" -- but cleaned up a bit for broadcast TV. I watched the first three episodes and the show definitely grew on me (could have done without the gambling addiction side story that pops up in the second episode, though). Charles Grounds, the young actor who plays Buzz, reminds me a lot of John Francis Daley when he played Sam Weir on "Freaks and Geeks." So that's a big plus, too.
Paranormal Witness (10pm, Syfy) - A devout Baptist family from Indiana's alleged battle with demonic forces is recalled.
Necessary Roughness (10pm, USA) - Dani works with a self-help guru who's skeptical about talk therapy, and Nico digs up information on V3.
Pretty Little Liars (8pm, ABC Family) - Spencer and Emily tour a college for different reasons: Spencer digs into Ali's link to the school, while Emily ponders her academic future.
Nine for IX: Pat XO (8pm, ESPN) - The latest in this ESPN "about women, by women" documentary series presents the story of legendary University of Tennessee basketball coach Pat Summitt (right), told through the eyes of her son Tyler and numerous others whose lives were touched during her record-setting career. Tamika Catchings, Peyton Manning and Kenny Chesney are among those featured. It's directed by Lisa Lax and Nancy Stern Winters and produced by Robin Roberts.
Interior Therapy (9pm, Bravo) - Jeff's design is questioned as he squares off against a demanding client in the Season 2 opener.
Rizzoli & Isles (9pm, TNT) - TJ's christening takes a nightmarish turn when a body is found in the church. Meanwhile, Jane comes close to abusing her power to protect Tommy, who's mired in a custody battle.
Frontline: Two American Families (10pm, UNC-TV) - The stories of two Milwaukee families as they struggle to remain in the middle class over a 20-year period.
Drunk History (10pm, Comedy Central) - A new series in which drunk comedians tell stories from American history and then A-list comedic actors act out the stories, lip-synching to the drunken ramblings. It's mostly hilarious. In tonight's debut, the stories of Watergate and John Wilkes Booth assassinating Abraham Lincoln are really funny (especially Adam Scott as Booth), but the third segment is a big miss. Here's my review of "Drunk History."
Property Envy (10pm, Bravo) - Property mavens Jeff Lewis (see "Interior Therapy" above), Mary McDonald and Brandie Malay discuss and spotlight luxury real estate in this panel talk show hosted by Stephen Collins. The premiere episode focuses on a house in Beverly Hills and an artist's getaway in Idaho. Another episode airs at 10:30.
You needn't have seen "Gasland" to watch "Gasland Part II" ( 9 tonight, HBO) but as a citizen, as a human, you need to watch "Gasland Part II." Yes, it's that important.
The documentary continues filmmaker Josh Fox's look at hydraulic fracturing (aka fracking, the process of extracting natural gas and oil from the earth) with the same dark humored approach he used in the first film to take the edge off the potent, devastating and critical information.
What's established right away is this isn't a conservative versus liberal or Democrat versus Republican issue. Indeed, President Obama and Sen. Paul Ryan agree that natural gas is the fix to our dependency on oil. Yet, this film makes a good case that it really isn't. More importantly, it shows the inherent risks of fracking and the citizens who pay the price of those risks.
What does "pay the price" mean? How about contending with toxins that make your children suffer nose bleeds and leave deadly traces in your lungs? That's scary enough. Scarier is the story of Dimock, Pa., a town pulled this way and that by the local and federal governments after fracking left its water supply unsafe. It's one thing to have corporate interests destroy your way of life; it's worse to realize that your government will allow it to happen.
That's the true horror of "Gasland Part II," the way the oil and gas industry apparently has bought and paid for government officials and favor. It's not breaking news that industries have insinuated themselves that way, but Fox does an effective job connecting the dots between the Supreme Court's decision that allowed direct lobbying to officials, how that access is used, and the ramifications for the rest of us.
What's revealed is a violation of much of what it means to be an American. Land, in families for generations, is effectively stolen by natural oil interests. Voices are silenced by confidentiality agreements. And globally, the water supply and the people suffer.
Some might call "Gasland Part II" alarmist or one-sided, but when you see people of all stripes telling their stories, it's tough to scream bias. These things happened to them. "Gasland Part II" should be a wake up call and a call to action. The film proves that we can not afford to be an unaware citizenry.
Get Out Alive with Bear Grylls (9pm, NBC) - In this new reality competition series hosted by wilderness-survival expert Bear Grylls (of cable TV fame), ten teams compete in extreme challenges under extreme conditions on New Zealand's South Island.
Gasland Part II (9pm, HBO) - It's flammable drinking water time again! This followup to Josh Fox's Oscar-nominated documentary "Gasland" uses Fox's trademark dark humor to take a deeper look at the dangers of hydraulic fracking, including dangers on an international level. Adrienne says we all have to watch this. Her review.
Under the Dome (10pm, CBS) - Big Jim recruits Barbie to join the manhunt when a former deputy goes rogue. Meanwhile, Junior tries to escape the dome by going underground.
Longmire (10pm, A&E) - A man orders a hit on his wife, and later, Vic is unnerved by an ex-cop.
Siberia (10pm, NBC) - A shocking announcement comes with the loss of another contestant, while those remaining are dealing with deception and drama -- including accusations of theft, the discovery of a bloody scene in the woods and arguments over food rationing.
Mistresses (10pm, ABC) - Savi tries to make things right with Harry, but he does his best to avoid her. Elsewhere, April's romance with Richard intensifies.
The third time I watched the first episode of Comedy Central's new series "Drunk History" (Tuesday, 10 p.m.), I laughed even more than I did the first two times. At least for two thirds of the show (more on that later).
The way "Drunk History" works is that co-creators Derek Waters and Jeremy Konner get comedian friends plastered and film them telling famous stories from American history. Which is funny. But then, Waters and Konner enlist well-known actors to act out the stories, perfectly lip-synching the drunken ramblings of the narrators. Which is hilarious.
(Note: You may already be familiar with "Drunk History" from the FunnyOrDie website where the sketches attracted stars like Will Ferrell and Ryan Gosling. If not, you'll want to get over there right away and start catching up.)
The first episode for Comedy Central, which is already available online, focuses on events that happened in Washington, D.C.: Woodward and Bernstein break the Watergate story, narrated by Matt Gourley; the sibling rivalry of John Wilkes Booth (Lincoln's assassin) and his brother Edwin, narrated by Allan McLeod; and Elvis meets Nixon, narrated by Eric Edelstein.
Gourley is a charming, almost dignified drunk -- at least up until the point he vomits mid-story. But even that's kinda cute. Gourley's Watergate story is acted out by Nathan Fielder (as Bob Woodward -- or as Gourley calls him, Robert Woodward), Fred Willard (Deep Throat) and Bob Odenkirk (Richard Nixon). All great, but Gourley is the star of this segment.
McLeod is even funnier, though, trying to get through the story of the events that led John Wilkes Booth to assassinate Abraham Lincoln. In that story, Will Forte plays Edwin Booth, Stephen Merchant plays Abraham Lincoln (quite funny in his one speaking scene) and Adam Scott (pictured above with Forte) is John Wilkes Booth. I'm starting an Emmy campaign now for Scott, who is laugh-out-loud perfection miming McLeod's drunken rants and mutterings.
Not as funny is the third story, Edelstein recounting the time Elvis (horribly overplayed here by Jack Black) met Nixon (Odenkirk again). The least said about that, the better.
Some of the other narrators of "Drunk History" will include Kyle Kinane, Jen Kirkman and Jenny Slate. The actors lined up to act out the stories of Patty Hearst, Al Capone, the Scopes Monkey Trial and many others include Jake Johnson, Kevin Nealon, Kristen Wiig, Aubrey Plaza, Chris Parnell and Luke and Owen Wilson.
The eight episodes ordered up by Comedy Central (or at least the segments within the episodes) could very well be hit-and-miss (see Jack Black above), but if even a handful of the stories capture the magic of McLeod and Scott -- or offer a moment like Gourley's clumsy attempt to cuddle mid-story with his freaked-out cat -- "Drunk History" will be one of the most solid half-hour TV bets on the schedule.
Sunday Best (8pm, BET) - Season 6 of the gospel singing reality competition show begins with auditions in Houston and Atlanta and a performance by Ernest Pugh. Kirk Franklin is the host.
Celebrity Wife Swap (8pm, ABC) - Actress and singer Nia Peeples leaves her surfer husband and mobile California beach home to swap places with '80s pop star Tiffany, who lives a busy life in Nashville.
True Blood (9pm, HBO) - Sookie confronts her attraction to Ben (Rob Kazinsky, right) by inviting him to dinner, and Eric counters Burrell's brutal anti-vampire initiatives by hitting him where it hurts the most.
Dexter (9pm, Showtime) - Miami Metro continues its search for the 'Brain Surgeon' serial killer, and in a related matter, Dr. Vogel enlists Dexter's help.
Drop Dead Diva (9pm, Lifetime) - Jane represents a jilted bride who is suing the former groom for damages. Also, a surrogate mother searches for the missing parents of the child she is about to deliver.
Oprah's Lifeclass (9pm, OWN) - A follow-up to a discussion of fatherless sons, with guests Geoffrey Canada of Harlem Children's Zone and Dr. Steve Perry of the Save Our Sons Foundation.
Crossing Lines (10pm, NBC) - Sebastian and the ICC team investigate an unusual situation in Poland, and Hickman and Louis race to save Eva and Tommy when an undercover mission puts them in danger.
Falling Skies (10pm, TNT) - Hal at last casts light on his internal struggle, while Lourdes works on a dangerous new medical procedure.
Family Tree (10pm, HBO) - In the Season 1 finale, Pete and Be a go to Venice Beach on their last day in California, but must form a panicked search party when Monk gets lost. Meanwhile, Tom and Ally meet a distant Chadwick cousin whose grandfather was a silent-film cowboy, and Al and Kitty throw their British visitors a farewell party that exposes more family secrets and marked a turning point in Tom and Ally's relationship.