American Music Awards, Kate’s Surgery on ‘This Is Us,’ ‘Flash’ & ‘Black Lightning’ Return
A critical checklist of notable Tuesday TV:
2018 American Music Awards (8/7c, ABC): Another week, another music awards show. But the AMAs stand out: partly because the fans vote for the winners, but mostly because of the talent assembled for this extravaganza at L.A.’s Microsoft Theater, hosted by black-ish star Tracee Ellis Ross. The night opens with Taylor Swift making her first awards-show performance in nearly three years, and tributes promise to provide memorable moments. A salute to Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin will include Gladys Knight, Ledisi and CeCe Winans, and with a movie bio-pic soon to open, Queen will be remembered with a rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Panic! At the Disco. The diva quota will be filled by headliners Jennifer Lopez, Carrie Underwood, Mariah Carey and the ever-provocative Cardi B.
This Is Us (9/8c, NBC): Another turning point for the Pearsons, as they gather for emotional support — with always the possibility of friction — as Kate (Chrissy Metz) undergoes tricky IVF surgery. The teaser shows her interacting with her past selves, a new wrinkle on this show’s fondness for multiple timelines. And in the wake of his movie opening, Kevin (Justin Hartley) will begin to explore father Jack’s (Milo Ventimiglia) fateful Vietnam War history.
Saving the Day: So many DC superheroes, so few time periods on The CW. The network’s fall lineup gets underway with a fifth season of The Flash (8/7c), in which Barry (Grant Gustin) and Iris (Candice Patton) must figure out how to return Nora West-Allen (Jessica Parker Kennedy) back to the future without doing more damage to the timeline. In the here and now on the second season of Black Lightning (9/8c), Jefferson Pierce (Cress Williams) appeals to Napier Frank (Robert Townsend) to keep the school from being closed.
Inside Tuesday TV: With only two weeks to go before the vote for America’s favorite book is revealed, PBS’s The Great American Read (8/7c, check local listings at pbs.org) flips the pages of literature’s most beloved romances… Damon Wayans may have announced plans to leave Fox’s Lethal Weapon (9/8c) at year’s end, but for now, Murtaugh is celebrating his 30th anniversary with the LAPD — if his father-in-law (Richard Roundtree) doesn’t ruin the party… Facebook Watch’s Sorry for Your Loss, starring Elizabeth Olson as Leigh, a young widow, streams the final two episodes of the first season. In the first, Leigh takes off to Palm Springs, finding a kindred spirit who’s also looking to escape reality, then she discovers a surprise about her late husband’s final week, which could jeopardize her relationship with her brother-in-law Danny (Jovan Adepo)… Rebecca Romijn guests on husband Jerry O’Connell’s lighter-than-air procedural Carter (10/9c, WGN America) as the producer of Harley’s (O’Connell) TV show, Call Carter, just as he finds new evidence that his mother’s killer may still be on the loose.