What's On: ABC’s ‘TGIT’ lineup returns intact with ‘Scandal’ joining ‘Grey’s' and 'Murder' after a long hiatus

Michael Fell
Tony Rivetti/ABC

SCANDAL - "Survival of the Fittest" - The election results for the presidential race between Mellie Grant and Francisco Vargas are announced, and the shocking results lead to an explosive outcome, on the highly anticipated season premiere of "Scandal," airing on THURSDAY, JANUARY 26 (9:00-10:00 p.m. EST), on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Tony Rivetti) KATIE LOWES, GUILLERMO DIAZ, KERRY WASHINGTON

Scandal (9/8c, ABC): Having sat out the fall because of its star’s pregnancy, Shonda Rhimes’ signature melodrama returns to restore the “TGIT” lineup to its full insane glory. We’ll find out if Mellie Grant (the fearless Bellamy Young) succeeds husband Fitz (Tony Goldwyn) into the White House, and however it turns out, we know something’s going to go boom. Scandal is preceded by a strong “bottle” episode—self-contained, no subplots—of Grey’s Anatomy (8/7c), in which Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) is accompanied by Bailey (Chandra Wilson) and Jo (Camilla Luddington) to a maximum security women’s prison to attend to a troubled inmate’s compromised pregnancy. What about Alex’s (Justin Chambers) own prison fate? That will have to wait until next week. And on How to Get Away With Murder (10/9c), Annalise (Oscar nominee Viola Davis) and her students reel from the aftermath of Wes’s (Alfred Enoch) death.

Riverdale (9/8c, The CW): If you remember the Archie comics characters as cheerful innocents whose biggest transgression was stealing fries at Pop’s Chok’lit Shoppe, you’ll be in for a shock with this twisted revisionist update, a moody teen-angst mystery series with elements of Dawson’s Creek (by way of Love Canal) and even Twin Peaks. The death of a student propels Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead and the gang into a world of sexualized, heightened intrigue, leavened by pop-culture shout-outs with echoes of Gossip Girl and Glee. Did we mention Luke Perry (90210) is Archie’s divorced dad? How old do we feel now?

Pure Genius (10/9c, CBS): The medical drama airs its final episode, possibly forever, in which Angie (Brenda Song) uses radical technology to treat her mother, whose preference for traditional methods means it’s time for a consult with Scott (Ward Horton). In another case, doctors use suspended animation to treat a graffiti artist with a clotting disorder. If CBS doesn’t renew the series, fans will forever wonder what they might have come up with next.

Inside Thursday TV: Netflix presents a 30-minute interview special, 13th: A Conversation With Oprah Winfrey & Ava DuVernay, during which Winfrey explores the making of the acclaimed Oscar-nominated documentary about racial inequality as manifested in the U.S. justice system. … On CMT’s Nashville (9/8c), Scarlett (Clare Bowen) clashes with the director of The Exex’ music video, and Maddie (Lennon Stella) grows closer to street musician Clay (Joseph David-Jones). … In Comedy Central’s Roast Battle II: War of the Words (10/9c), Jeff Ross and guest judges preside over eight of 16 finalists, all masters of the sick burn. The competition continues through Sunday.

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