Thursday remains a ridiculously packed night of television, assuming you like comedy and crime stories. Of course, if you don’t like comedy or crime stories, it’s unlikely you like television much at all, in which case, let’s just move on.
“Charlie’s Angels,” 8 P.M.
What Is It?: Well, it’s “Charlie’s Angels,” but with new angels, (Annie Ilonzeh; Rachael Taylor. and Minka Kelly), and a new Charlie. (As of this writing, who that will be remains a mystery, as the original choice, Robert Wagner, dropped out, but Victor Garber is rumored to be his replacement.)
Why To Watch: Drew Barrymore is executive producer, and her movie reboots of the franchise were pretty good. (OK, fine, that first one was good.) Also, it’s all about pretty chicks kicking butt, which I will never object to, and some of the original Angels may just be making some cameo appearances.
Why To Turn the Channel: Because, let’s face it, it could just be too stupid and uninspired to be entertaining, and those angels aren’t the most exciting of actresses. (Save for Minka Kelly. She’s held her own on both “Friday Night Lights” and “Parenthood.”)
“Person of Interest,” 9 P.M.
What Is It?: A crime procedural drama about modern era surveillance and “pattern recognition systems,” and its uses by two men who aim to prevent crimes before they happen.
Why To Turn the Channel: The only procedural drama you wanted to watch at 9 P.M. on Thursdays was “CSI,” and dammit, this show ain’t it. Also, is watching people try to prevent crimes different enough from watching people solve crimes to warrant the viewing of yet another crime drama?
“Whitney,” 9:30 P.M.
What Is It?: A new sitcom created by and starring comedian Whitney Cummings, but if you’ve been to a movie theater, watched any NBC affiliated station, or driven down a freeway in the past three months, you probably already know that.
Why To Watch: Despite all that, you still like Whitney Cummings.
Why To Turn the Channel: You can’t look past that media blitz, the show itself looks kind of hacky, and it’s the only sitcom on NBC tonight that has a laugh track, making it stand out like a sore vagina.
“Prime Suspect,” 10 P.M.
Why To Watch: Maria Bello is usually pretty good, and you’d like to see a new drama with a female lead that does not require her to wear a skimpy uniform.
Why To Turn the Channel: It’s “Prime Suspect” without Helen Mirren, which is to say, pretty pointless. Also, while the original series focused on single crimes for a season, this one is just your standard one-mystery-per-episode drama.
First off, no, “30 Rock” isn’t on tonight. It won’t be on until next year because Tina Fey has to take care of her new baby, OK? Yes, its disappearance is heartbreaking, but the good news is: “Community” IS back! And it was better than “30 Rock” last year anyway! John Goodman is set to join the cast in a recurring role, Troy and Abed are getting an apartment together, and Chang is now a security guard. All that AND another Halloween episode? Can’t wait. 8 P.M.
It’s followed by “Parks & Recreation,” at 8:30 P.M. which, ironically, had a delayed premiere last year because of Amy Poehler’s pregnancy. Oh, those SNL vets and their procreation! So disruptive! This season, Leslie will decide whether to go into politics, or pursue love. Or, might she possibly try for both?
“The Office” probably should have ended last season with the departure of Steve Carrell. Let’s be honest. But trudge on it does, with the addition of James Spader to the cast. He is not, however, replacing Michael Scott, as that position has not yet been filled. Instead, he is the new company CEO. (And a spooky one at that.)
“The Big Bang Theory” offers two episodes starting at 8 P.M., and those two people who woke up together in the season finale will now face the comedic consequences of their actions.
“The Mentalist,” also returns, with Patrick Jane facing the not-so comedic consequences of killing his nemesis. OR DID HE? 10 P.M.
Last, and possibly least, is the return of “Grey’s Anatomy,” at 9 P.M., with a two hour episode. Will Christina keep her baby? Or be granted that always convenient television alternative to actually making a choice: a miscarriage? And will Meredith and McDreamy break up? Again? (Please, no. Spare us, Shonda!)