What's Worth Watching: American Crime, Underground, The Carmichael Show and more for Wednesday, March 9
American Crime (10/9c, ABC): Nearly everyone in this troubling parable of class, sexuality and race feels victimized in some way by the end of this superb anthology's sobering second-season finale. This includes the idealistic hacker Sebastian (Richard Cabral), whose strategy of exposing the cover-up at the private Leyland School backfires when a rival webhead begins tapping indiscriminately into people's private files. "Nobody controls the digital space," Sebastian learns to his dismay—and that would be a great starting point should this show get a third season. While jailed Taylor (Connor Jessup) faces trial, which would require his alleged rapist Eric (Joey Pollari) to testify, a showdown brews between Coach Dan (Timothy Hutton) and headmaster Leslie (Felicity Huffman) over the fate of Dan's daughter, Becca (Sky Van Vliet), charged with selling Taylor drugs on the day of the school shooting. And that's just the beginning of the grim fallout. What a tremendous series.
Underground (10/9c, WGN America): This ambitious channel, which recently canceled Manhattan after two seasons, tries again with historical drama in a compelling account of the Underground Railroad in pre-Civil War America. The series follows the efforts of a band of slaves in a Georgia plantation to escape in a treacherous bid for liberation. Aldis Hodge is powerful as the blacksmith Noah, leading the way while not knowing exactly who to trust.
The Carmichael Show (10/9c, NBC): The surprise summer comedy hit returns with back-to-back episodes, starting with Jerrod's mother Cynthia (the terrific Loretta Devine) getting in a tizzy when she sees a friend's husband with a woman who's not his wife, spurring a family debate on cheating. The show moves to Sunday this weekend, when they tackle the troubled legacy of Bill Cosby.
Inside Wednesday TV: With the battle round starting next week, NBC's The Voice (8/7c) looks back at the best of this season's blind auditions, always the most enjoyable part of this competition. … CBS has been touting this season of Survivor (8/7c) as among the most grueling ever, and this week's episode includes a medical evacuation after one of the castaways succumbs to the heat. … ABC's black-ish (9:30/8:30c) repeats its terrific episode from September in which the family grapples with the dreaded "N"-word after adorable little Jack (Miles Brown) utters the epithet at school during a talent show. Does anyone have the right to use it, and if so, for what purpose? These are the kinds of topical conversations you too rarely see on today's sitcoms.