Savannah Guthrie on ‘Jeopardy,’ ‘Celebrity Dating Game,’ CW’s ‘Republic of Sarah,’ TCM Remembers Norman Lloyd
Jeopardy!’s revolving door of guest hosts deposits Today co-anchor Savannah Guthrie for the next two weeks. ABC revives The Dating Game with a silly celebrity version. The CW premieres a fanciful drama about a town that secedes from the United States.
After an impressive two-week stint from Call Me Kat’s Mayim Bialik as guest host, the quiz show dips back into the deep well of TV news broadcasters, selecting Today’s co-anchor Savannah Guthrie to be the next to read clues and welcome contestants. Some have fared better than others, but they all know they can’t measure up to the immortal Alex Trebek.
The Celebrity Dating Game
With so much cheese it could put the lactose-intolerant in the emergency room, this goofy retread of the iconic 1960s’ game show features an alarmingly perky Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) as host. She’s joined by a mummified Michael Bolton, who occasionally bursts into song to give the bachelors behind the wall some musical clues about the mystery “celebrity” who’s asking them questions. In the opener, former Bachelorette and Dancing with the Stars winner Hannah Brown, who’s somehow still using TV to find her dates, grills one of the bachelors to the point you can see his flop sweat. More successfully, comedian Nicole Byer (Nailed It!) comes along to ask questions like, “If I was a frozen pizza, how would you get me hot?” In another memorable moment, when one of her bachelors offers the defense, “If you’re not cheating, you’re not trying hard enough,” she retorts, “You said that out loud on a dating thing?” With this dating thing, TV has officially arrived at the silly apex of the summer season.
The Republic of Sarah
Preachy and preposterous, this fanciful drama about a small New Hampshire town that declares its independence from the United States of America earns some points by not making its heroine a superhero, ninja, witch or other supernatural creature, making Sarah Cooper (Stella Baker) something of a CW outlier. She’s merely a high-school history teacher, whose mantra is, “Ordinary people can do extraordinary things.” She’ll be forced to practice what she teaches when she leads the charge against a mining company that’s plotting with local and state officials to uproot many of the locals so they can strip-mine a precious ore used for high-tech. Awkwardly, Sarah’s long-absent brother (Luke Mitchell) is one of the smug suits conniving to wipe the town of Greylock off the map. Speaking of maps, when Sarah realizes the town was never formally incorporated into either the U.S. or Canada, she puts it up for a vote and Greylock becomes its own country. At least they didn’t storm the Capitol.
TCM Tribute to Norman Lloyd
My generation probably remembers this revered actor-producer-director as Dr. Auschlander on NBC’s beloved medical drama St. Elsewhere, but over his 80-year career, he worked with many of the greats including Hitchcock and Orson Welles. Norman Lloyd passed away in May at 106 and was a regular at TCM’s Classic Film Festivals. The channel honors Lloyd with a prime-time salute including a screening of Alfred Hitchcock’s 1942 Saboteur (8/7c), in which he portrays the title villain and meets a memorable end, and his appearance in 2016 for Live from the TCM Classic Film Festival: Norman Lloyd (10/9c), in which he reflects on his career before a live audience; and Charlie Chaplin’s melancholic 1952 Limelight (11 pm/10c).
Inside Monday TV:
- The Real Manhunter (streaming on Acorn TV): After 30 years solving cases for the UK police, Detective Chief Inspector Colin Sutton inspired the drama series Manhunt (he was played by Doc Martin’s Martin Clunes). Now the real Colin Sutton takes the spotlight in an eight-part docuseries in which he revisits some of his most notorious cases.
- The Housewife and the Hustler (streaming on Hulu): Produced by ABC News, this documentary special investigates the alleged crimes of L.A. celebrity lawyer Tom Girardi, best known as the husband of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills’ Erika Jayne. He’s accused of having bilked clients by raiding their trust accounts to help pay for the lifestyle he flaunted on his wife’s reality-TV show.
- BBQ Brawl (9/8c, Food Network): There’s a twist for the second season of the grilling competition, when team coaches Bobby Flay and Michael Symon are joined by a third crew, led by Food Network Star champ Eddie Jackson.
- The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (11:35/10:35, CBS): After more than a year of broadcasting from his home (once, famously, from his bathtub), Colbert finally returns to the Ed Sullivan Theatre and a live audience, with former Daily Show pal and icon Jon Stewart as his first in-person guest. H.E.R. brings the music, and former Saturday Night Live star Dana Carvey makes an appearance. Isn’t that special?