What's On: ‘Goldbergs’ hits 100, ‘Frontline’ tackles Putin, Moore the merrier on ‘Minds’

Matt Roush
ABC

A critical checklist of notable Wednesday TV:

The Goldbergs (8/7c, ABC): Happy 100th episode to the nostalgic family sitcom, celebrating in a Halloween episode which reinforces its bona fides with a salute to An Officer and a Gentleman, though it’s a bumpy holiday for Adam (Sean Giambrone) and Jackie (Rowan Blanchard) when they can’t agree on a costume.

More Halloween shenanigans throughout ABC’s comedy lineup, as the kids in Speechless (8:30/7:30c) eat old Halloween candy than infects their dreams, the adults on Modern Family (9/8c)—that would be Phil (Ty Burrell) and Claire (Julie Bowen), who sometimes barely qualify—seem to be the only ones who want to keep the Halloween traditions going, and American Housewife (9:30/8:30c) introduces the Westport tradition of leaving an anonymous “Boo” package on neighbors’ doorsteps, so why does no one seem to give a “Boo” about the Otto family?

Frontline (10/9c, PBS, check local listings at pbs.org): The opposite of fake news, Frontline enlists one of its top producers, Michael Kirk (The Choice 2016, Divided States of America), to deliver the searing two-part investigation Putin’s Revenge (concluding next Wednesday). The first night charts the Russian leader’s rise to power from a KGB background that instilled distrust and resentment of the U.S. and its promotion of democracy. Seizing control of the media while preaching Cold War rhetoric, Putin would be emboldened, according to intelligence officials, to meddle in the 2016 elections. That’s the focus of next week’s installment.

Criminal Minds (10/9c, CBS): A week away from launching his new (though old in concept) series S.W.A.T., Shemar Moore returns to his old roost as Derek Morgan. He’s on hand to lend support to Garcia (Kirsten Vangsness), who’s going through a rough patch over a case that affects her personally.

 

Inside Wednesday TV: PBS’s Nova begins a three-part series on natural disasters with “Killer Volcanoes” (9/8c, check local listings at pbs.org), seeking geologic clues from Greenland to Antarctica to identity a volcano that send the medieval world into a deep freeze. … The CW’s Dynasty (9/8c) goes back to the “greed is good” 1980s, when the original series ruled, to throw a themed charity gala, where Fallon (Elizabeth Gillies) once again clashes with father Blake (Grant Show). … Halloween comes to Comedy Central’s South Park (10/9c), when a witch casts a spell that ruins the holiday for the boys, though Cartman as usual senses an opportunity in this sort of supernatural power.

 

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