TV on Tap: “Modern Family” Helps Gay Teens, HBO Out of “Luck,” Renewal News for “Portlandia” and “The Lying Game”

Rejoice, comedy fans! Community returns tonight!


Nick at Night’s upcoming telenovela, Hollywood Heights has gotten a lot more interesting with the cast addition of telenovela stud Carlos Ponce. I’m a fan. When I first saw him in Telemundo‘s Dame Chocolate it made me want to learn  Spanish! Another casting coup, James Franco has agreed to appear in multiple episodes. Not so surprising when Hollywood Heights is being produced by Jill Faren Phelps, who also got Franco to appear on General Hospital. Note, she’s also my main reason to be wary of Hollywood Heights.

Could this be a reason to hope the series will get a safe landing off the bubble? Comedy Central has picked up repeats of Community. The repeats won’t start airing until 2013, but that’s bound to help the economics.

ABC Family is reportedly on the verge of ordering a second season of The Lying Game. Now, can we get to stunt casting one of Alexandra Chando‘s former As the World Turns co-stars (like somebody named Van or Jake)?

The CW’s time-traveling musical drama Joey Dakota has added another hunk to its cast. Scott Wolf will play an adorkable guy (I guess that means his costume will include thick glasses) who facilitates the drama’s time travel.

In a surprising move, HBO has gone from suspending production on the horse-racing drama Luck to canceling the series, which was filming episodes for a second season. I’m starting to think there’s a dedicated Deadwood fan out there casting curses to make sure David Milch‘s series don’t succeed until that Deadwood movie gets made.

While IFC hasn’t made an official announcement, star Carrie Brownstien told an Australian radio show that Portlandia will get a third-season renewal. Hooray for more mockery of urban living, I’ve lived that second season finale many times.

Why Jenna Elfman continues to get lead roles on TV is a mystery to me, but she will play the First Lady in the NBC comedy pilot 1600 Penn.

At a PaleyFest panel, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Eric Stonestreet discussed the letters they get from gay fans, including teens dealing with coming out. We’re still at a point where showing gay people being boring is an important and revolutionary message to kids understanding that being gay is not the end of the world.

Speaking of which, a production company is looking at creating a reality TV take on Modern Family, looking for a large extended family that regularly gets together. There’s no network or air date so this is all just someone’s idea, but it’s one worth following.

The TNT period pilot L.A. Noir might include a guest-appearance by Simon Pegg.

Why doesn’t Raising Hope have the kind of dedicated following that Parks & Recreation has, with animated gifs on tumber, tribute videos and other expressions of fan adoration?

Former Scrubs fast-talker John C. McGinley will have a recurring role in the upcoming season of Burn Notice as a CIA training officer who trained Michael Weston.


Live! with Kelly (syndicated) Check local listings
After watching a character deal with his sexuality on last night’s Whitney, I’ll probably be tuning in to see what Whitney Cummings has to say on the show today.

Anderson (syndicated) Check local listings
Anderson meeting with Muppet diva Miss Piggy. I don’t bear any ill will towards Anderson, but if he makes it through the show without being on the recieving end of a karate chop, I’ll be disappointed. That said, I’ll also accept today’s other guest, Dr Sanjay Gupta, getting attacked by Miss Piggy.

Days of Our Lives (NBC) Check local listings
Sonny opens his coffee house and there’s a surprise awaiting him when he learns who invested in the venture. Let’s hope that’s the beginning of Sonny graduating from the background to getting to participate in more stories.

Community (NBC) 8:00 PM ET
How do you get things going after a hiatus? How does a wedding proposal sound as a way to shake things up? Then again, we’re talking about Community, so I’m expecting a complete subversion of the very idea of a wedding storyline.

The Vampire Diaries (CW) 8:00 PM ET
It’s time for another flashback as a crime spree in Mystic Falls reminds Damon of a vampire he met in 1912. Meanwhile, Rebekah develops an ominous interest in the town’s oldest landmarks. Sometimes this show makes a good argument for living in a bland and impersonal suburban subdivision.

Missing (ABC) 8:00 PM ET
Ashley Judd brings her special brand of lady vengeance to the small screen.  In this series she plays a former CIA operative seeking her son after he disappears during a post-graduation trip around the world. It’s got action, exotic locales… and a terrible time slot. Can Missing accomplish what Charlies Angels couldn’t?

30 Rock (NBC) 8:00 PM ET
St. Patrick’s Day brings Dennis Duffy back into Liz‘s life. That’s unwelcome in most circumstances, but now that Liz has Criss in her life, she thinks she’s cursed. Cursed… by mayhem, perhaps?

The Secret Circle (CW) 9:00 PM ET
As the Circle tries to figure out what to think of Blackwell (who, of course, is behaving suspiciously) word of a device that can take away a witch’s powers makes it all the more urgent. Meanwhile, Diana decides its time to try dating a normal guy just as a hot new guy arrives in town, which means there should be one storyline in tonight’s episode that I won’t hate.

Project Runway All Stars (Lifetime) 9:00 PM ET
Tonight brings the beginning of a two-part finale. With no fourth person to eliminate will there be a surprise challenge? Will Joanna visit the designers at home? Of course, the big question is if this show can recover from last week’s mess of a challenge.

The Office (NBC) 9:00 PM ET
The Tallahassee storyline wraps up as Nellie shows up in Scranton while Andy races to Florida to win Ellie back. I’m just hoping this isn’t going to be another half-hour where I wonder how any comedy can do so little with Catherine Tate and Georgia Engel.

Up All Night (NBC) 9:30 PM ET
So far, Up All Night‘s big problem has been trying to figure out if it’s a family comedy with complications from a wacky workplace or an office comedy with a focus on one character’s home life. A nice balance came together when Jason Lee was around, but now it’s struggling again. I don’t think tonight’s episode will resolve that problem. On tap: Chris decides he wants another baby, Ava attends a mentorship program and Missy wonders if she’s helping Luke too much.

Awake (NBC) 10:00 PM ET
How will the parallels fall when it’s Michael‘s son Rex who gets kidnapped in one of Michael’s realities. More importantly, does scary police chief Laura Innes have a counterpart in the other dream world?

Archer (FX) 10:00 PM ET
For the season finale, ISIS goes into space when the International Space Station is threatened. Bryan Cranston guest-voices this one, which has me hoping for some classic Malcolm in the Middle goofiness.

Chelsea Lately (E!) 11:00 PM ET
Ross Mathews is on the panel tonight with Chelsea chatting with Shirley Manson.

Inside Comedy (Showtime) 11:00 PM ET
Ellen DeGeneres is sitting in the hot seat this week.

Watch What Happens Live (Bravo) 11:00 PM ET
Andy wrapping up his week with Cee-Lo Green and Mob Wives‘ “Big AngRailoa.

What will you be watching tonight? Please share in the comments!

Tomorrow’s Preview

Live! with Kelly (syndicated) Check local listings
John Laroquette and Mary McCormack will be visiting the Live set tomorrow.

The View (ABC)
Annie Potts and Eric McCormack will be stopping by for a chat.

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