There’s very little going on in “regular” TV this week, but there are miniseries, the return of the X Games, and other event-type shows, plus a new series about television writing.
Monday, July 29
The Writers’ Room (10-10:30 pm, Sundance)
This new series goes inside the process of writing some of today’s top TV shows. Hosted by Jim Rash (who plays Dean Pelton on Community and won an Oscar for co-writing the 2011 movie The Descendants), tonight’s episode features Bryan Cranston and the Breaking Bad writers. Future episodes will cover Parks And Recreation, Dexter, New Girl, Game of Thrones, and American Horror Story.
Tuesday, July 30
Drunk History (10-10:30 pm, Comedy Central)
DH has been on for just a few weeks; I’m only mentioning it again because tonight is the Boston episode, with drunkenly told stories including Mary Dyer’s defiance of Puritan hypocrisy and the Gardner Museum theft.
Wednesday, July 31
Restless (8 pm-12 am, Sundance)
Repeat of a 2012 miniseries in which a 1970s British college student learns that her mother was a spy during World War II.
Thursday, August 1
X Games Los Angeles (9 pm-12 am, ESPN)
The 19th installment of this alterna-sports competition kicks off today, with events taking place at various locations in the greater LA area.
Friday, August 2
Stroumboulopoulos (11 pm-12 am, CNN)
There’s a talk show on CNN? I didn’t know either, until now. Hosted by George Stroumboulopoulos, a Canadian radio and TV personality, the show’s blurb on the CNN website says it “explores the worlds of art, pop culture, politics, tech news, and sports through the eyes and the words of their most interesting figures.” Recent guests have included Michael C. Hall and Aisha Tyler.
Saturday, August 3
Lawrence of Arabia (8 pm-12 am, TCM)
Not all cable and satellite systems carry TCM, and some make it part of an optional package. That’s unfortunate, because it’s one of the few channels that show quality movies without commercial breaks. Films don’t get much more epic than this story of a British intelligence officer who becomes the unlikely leader of an Arab revolt against the Turks during World War I.
Sunday, August 4
Inside the American Mob (10-11 pm, NatGeo)
Why it’s on this channel is a question I have no answer for, but this six-part series examines organized crime and law-enforcement’s efforts to stop it over roughly the past 40 years. The first two parts aired last Sunday, but I wasn’t aware of it at the time; however, they are conveniently being repeated before tonight’s installment, so tune in at 8 or set your DVR accordingly.
Wet Hot American Summer (2001)
From the minds behind the comedy troupe The State, this gleefully wacky riff on summer-camp movies features a horde of performers who would go on to future glory, including Paul Rudd, Amy Poehler, Bradley Cooper, Elizabeth Banks, Christopher Meloni (even more outrageously twisted here than in his Harold & Kumar cameos), and other familiar faces like Janeane Garofalo, David Hyde Pierce, and Molly Shannon.
(Note: this information is accurate as of publication time, but programming is subject to change at the discretion of channels and networks. All times listed are Eastern time.)