Celebrating Willie Mays, Election Night Coverage, ‘Jeopardy!” Super Champ Exhibition, Bobby Flay Throws Down
An HBO Sports documentary celebrates the career of baseball legend Willie Mays. Most major broadcast and cable news networks provide wall-to-wall coverage of the midterm elections. Jeopardy! pauses the Tournament of Champions for a special exhibition game featuring the season’s three top Super Champs. Food Network’s Beat Bobby Flay returns with a holiday themed three-round format.
Say Hey, Willie Mays!
How beloved was baseball legend Willie Mays in his prime? In an era when Black people were mostly invisible on TV, he made cameos on mainstream 1960s sitcoms like Bewitched and The Donna Reed Show. Bob Costas marvels that Mays “would just show up as if that was the natural course of things.” His folksy “Say Hey” nickname is inscribed on the chair from which Mays, now 91, recalls the heights of his remarkable 20-plus-year career to director Nelson George for an engaging documentary portrait. The Hall of Famer started in the Negro Leagues as a teen and was renowned as a “five-tool player,” mastering the arts of hitting for average, hitting for power, running, fielding and throwing—always with a positive attitude. The most emotional testimony comes from godson and protégé Barry Bonds, who recalls how Mays urged him to surpass his own home-run record. “When I look at myself, I think about sports first,” says Mays. Makes sense, because when it comes to baseball, many think of Willie Mays first.
The Tournament of Champions’ quarterfinals are over, so bring on the Super Champs! The tournament pauses for a special exhibition game (designed for this date, because of potential election night pre-emptions), featuring last season’s big winners—who earned a bye for the first round as top seeds—as they convene for a one-of-a-kind warm-up game. For the first time, we’ll see who comes out on top when Amy Schneider (40 games), Matt Amodio (38) and Mattea Roach (23) face off. When the semifinals begin, Schneider competes on Wednesday, Amodio Thursday and Roach Friday.
Beat Bobby Flay
Flay takes on his fellow Food Network chef-lebrities in a six-week Holiday Throwdown event that expands the Beat format to three rounds and a team element. In the opener, guest hosted by Scott Conant, Tiffani Faison and Jet Tila engage in a Thanksgiving food battle in the first round, the winner moving on to cook against Anne Burrell in the second round. In the third and final round, the victor goes up against Bobby in a team challenge, where each gets to choose an eliminated chef as a teammate. A blind taste test decides the ultimate winner. In weeks to come, contestants include network faves Giada de Laurentiis, Carla Hall, Eddie Jackson, Michael Symon, Brooke Williamson and Geoffrey Zakarian.
Counter-programming midterm elections coverage on most other networks (see below), Fox pushes out new episodes for the night, starting with The Resident (8/7c), followed by more family intrigue in the country-music soap Monarch, with Nicky (Anna Friel) confronting interloper Catt (Martha Higareda), whose daughter Ana (Emma Milani) is getting uncomfortably cozy with Nicky’s son, Ace (Inigo Pascuel).
Midterm Elections Coverage:
- Prime time coverage starts at 8 pm/ET for most broadcast networks, while cable news networks plan to go wall-to-wall, even if many of the closer races may not be decided until days later. David Muir anchors ABC’s Your Voice, Your Vote 2022, while NBC’s Lester Holt moderates a panel for Decision 2022, Norah O’Donnell leads CBS’s America Decides: Campaign ’22, and for PBS Newshour, managing editor Judy Woodruff tries to make sense of it all. For another angle, CNBC presents Business on the Ballot (8 pm/ET), an hourlong special focusing on the elections’ projected impact on business and investors.
Inside Tuesday TV:
- Neal Brennan: Blocks (streaming on Netflix): Chances are you might need some laughs to get through this night. Writer/comedian Neal Brennan uses physical blocks on the stage of Los Angeles’ Belasco Theatre to explain the issues complicating his adult life.
- Reasonable Doubt (streaming on Hulu): A flashback to Jax (Emayatzy Corinealdi) as a teenager sheds new light on the childhood trauma that still haunts her. Back in court, the defense rests in Brayden’s (Sean Patrick Thomas) case.
- Carmen Jones (8/7c, Turner Classic Movies): On the eve of what would have been her 100th birthday, Dorothy Dandridge gets a TCM tribute with showings of some of her more significant films, including Otto Preminger’s film version of the Americanized opera, with Oscar Hammerstein II providing the libretto of the Bizet classic. Dandridge is the willful Carmen, seducing soldier Harry Belafonte.