REALITY. Hotel Hell,
Fox, Global, 8 p.m. ET/PT.
The North American viewing public continues to feast on the beast that is Gordon Ramsay. The blustery Brit chef already has two popular food-themed programs – Hell’s Kitchen and MasterChef – on the Fox Network lineup, but he moves into strange territory in this new series. Adhering more closely to the format of Kitchen Nightmares, the show features the mad chef and his team of hospitality experts performing rescue missions for hotels on the verge of folding. In tonight’s opener, they roll into Windsor, Vt., to check into the Juniper Hill Inn. The Juniper has undeniable rustic New England charm, but the staff is wildly disorganized and the place smells like sewage.
REALITY. Stars Earn Stripes,
NBC, 8 p.m.; Global, 9 p.m. ET/PT.
Get ready for some real flag-waving. Debuting tonight, this new series pays shamelessly patriotic tribute to the American armed forces with a series of competitions designed to put celebrities through the rugged military experience. Former U.S. army General Wesley Clark plays host, with assistance from Entertainment Tonight’s Samantha Harris. Their roster of star recruits includes boxer Laila Ali, actors Dean Cain and Terry Crews, TV host Nick Lachey, fitness trainer Dolvett Quince, Olympic skier Picabo Street, WWE wrestler Eve Torres and former snowmobile-racing champion Todd Palin, husband of you-know-who. Tonight’s opener pairs each star with a military handler and unveils the group’s first challenge – jumping out of a helicopter.
REALITY. United Bates of America,
TLC, 9 p.m. ET/PT.
Meet America’s latest super-sized family. This new series puts the spotlight on Gil and Kelly Jo Bates, weary parents of an astounding 19 children ranging in age from six months to 23 years old. Filmed in the hills of rural Tennessee and holding closely to the template of TLC’s unscripted series 19 Kids and Counting (which focuses on Jim and Michelle Duggar, also with 19 children), the program makes much ado about the conflicts that inevitably arise in a household with 10 girls and nine boys under the same roof. In tonight’s first show, Gil and Kelly try to get their entire brood involved in the annual Valentine’s Day celebration. In the second episode, the family packs up for a visit to Gil’s parents’ house, but what type of minivan can hold 21 passengers?
NBC, CTV, 10 p.m. ET/PT.
The fall season starts now. NBC is getting a jump on the competition with the early return of this offbeat crime drama, which was a modest ratings success for the network last season. If you’re late to the party, the show’s fantasy premise casts reliable David Giuntoli as Nick, a Portland homicide detective dealing with the fact that he’s descended from a centuries-old line of guardians known as “Grimms,” mankind’s only protectors against mythical monsters that would otherwise overrun Earth. Nick has already told his girlfriend Juliette (Bitsie Tulloch) about his supernatural duties, but his cop partner Hank (Russell Hornsby) remains clueless. Tonight’s opener picks up the story from last season’s cliffhanger ending with Nick reunited with the mother (Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio) he believed died 20 years ago.
MOVIE. Oh, God! Vision, midnight ET; 9 p.m. PT.
One of the biggest box-office earners of 1977, this low-key comedy marked the first and only pairing of folk singer John Denver and comedian George Burns. Even with no acting experience, the owlish Denver is perfectly charming as Jerry, a humble supermarket manager selected by God (Burns) to be his messenger in the modern world. The chosen one spreads the word and is naturally branded a crackpot by the media, religious leaders and his own wife, Bobbie (Teri Garr). Jerry finally decides to prove God’s existence in a courtroom after he’s sued for slander by a grandstanding preacher (Paul Sorvino). The late Dinah Shore makes a memorable cameo as herself.
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