Summer Premieres! "Army Wives," "Design Star," "Nashville Star" and More TiVoWorthy TV for the Week of June 8

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Cover image for  article: Summer Premieres! "Army Wives," "Design Star," "Nashville Star" and More TiVoWorthy TV for the Week of June 8

 
SATURDAY, JUNE 7
 
Sybil (CBS, 8 p.m. ET)
Premiere. One of the seminal television events of the Seventies, the original 1976 mini-series Sybil galvanized viewers with its frank subject matter and shocking depiction of child abuse. Her portrayal of the title role – a suicidal young woman struggling to live with 16 strikingly different personalities, the result of a childhood filled with endless physical, sexual and emotional abuse by her mentally disturbed mother – brought Sally Field (Brothers & Sisters) her first Emmy Award and propelled her from working in lightweight television comedies (Gidget, The Flying Nun, The Girl with Something Extra) to serious movie dramas, including two for which Field won Oscars, Norma Rae and Places in the Heart. Tammy Blanchard (Life with Judy Garland: Me and My Shadows) has the challenging task of reinterpreting the title role in this 2008 remake, also based on the best-selling book by Flora Rheta Schreiber. Two-time Academy Award winner Jessica Lange co-stars as the psychiatrist who treats Sybil, and JoBeth Williams plays her mother. With all this tremendous talent on screen, what the heck is this movie doing on a Saturday night – and in June?
 
Groomer Has It (Animal Planet, 9 p.m. ET)
In what will likely be the most emotional episode of the season, the groomers are challenged to bathe and beautify dogs from the Lange Foundation, a no-kill shelter in Los Angeles. Many of them are so moved by the plight of these unwanted animals that they work to recruit people for the shelter’s adoption fair and find them homes. Jai Rodriguez is the host.

Ultimate Keith Urban Fans (GAC, 9 p.m. ET)
Premiere. A 15-year-old girl, a mother of two and a 20-year-old male college sophomore -- each a huge (and, some might say, obsessive) fan of country superstar Keith Urban -- allow cameras into their homes to express their admiration for him and explain why each is Urban’s greatest fan. And then, in a series of surprise moves straight out of The Oprah Winfrey Show, they are each shocked to receive an unexpected visit from their idol.
 
Robin Hood (BBC America, 9 p.m. ET)
Robin faces certain death – again – when he sends his outlaws off on a diversionary mission and attends a feast at the castle disguised as one of the murderous Black Knights, only to be double-crossed by the man with whom he had intended to join forces, the Sheriff of Winchester. Jonas Armstrong stars.
 
 
 
SUNDAY, JUNE 8
 
Million Dollar Password (CBS, 8 p.m. ET)
Rosie O’Donnell and skateboarding superstar Tony Hawk are the celebrity players. Regis Philbin is the host.
 
The Circuit (ABC Family, 8 p.m. ET)
Premiere. Michelle Trachtenberg, who recently electrified Gossip Girl with her portrayal of monster bitch Georgina Sparks, and will forever be remembered as Dawn on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, stars in this drama about an estranged father and daughter who both compete on the stock car race circuit.  Her career is on a meteoric rise, despite the mounting distraction’s of her father’s own career challenges and her growing attraction to her professional rival, the circuit’s hunky top racer. Billy Campbell (The 4400, Once and Again) and Drew Fuller (Army Wives) co-star.
 
Your Place or Mine? (TLC, 8 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. Overexposed daytime hunk Cameron Mathison (All My Children, Dancing with the Stars) hosts TLC’s first game show, a hybrid of trivia and home decoration. Two families engage in trivia challenges for a chance to win brand new furnished rooms for their existing homes -- or the opportunity to steal rooms from their competitors!
 
Design Star (HGTV, 9 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. HGTV’s red-hot reality competition series, in which interior designers compete in a series of creative challenges to win their own series on HGTV, is set in Nashville for its third season. It kicks off with nine finalists – one of them selected online by visitors to hgtv.com. If you enjoy Color Splash, hosted by Design Star Season 1 winner David Bromstad, and Myles of Style, starring Season 2 champ Kim Myles, you won’t want to miss it! Clive Pearse returns as host. Interior designer Vern Yip, designer and author Cynthia Rowley and In Style executive editor Martha McCully are the judges.
 
Ice Road Truckers (History, 9 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. One of television’s most mesmerizing observational reality series returns for a second season of intense thrills and deep chills. Familiar truckers Hugh Rowland, Alex Debogorski, Rick Yemm and Drew Sherwood are joined by newcomers Eric Dufresne and Jerry Dusdal as they haul essential goods and supplies during the coldest part of winter over the ice road that forms on the frozen Arctic Ocean and winds along the Mackenzie River in the farthest reaches of the Northwest Territories. When we say coldest we’re not kidding: Temperatures in the region dip as low as minus-60 degrees! Incidentally, Season 1 of History’s other gritty observational reality show, Ax Men, concludes immediately after this program.
 
Law & Order: Criminal Intent (USA Network, 9 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. Determined to prove he is worthy of being reinstated on the force, Det. Robert Goren (Vincent D’Onofrio) goes undercover to catch a major drug dealer as Season 7 begins. Kathryn Erbe co-stars.
 
When We Left Earth: The NASA Missions (Discovery Channel, 9 p.m. ET)
Mini-Series Premiere. Gary Sinise (CSI: Miami) is the narrator of this six-part history of NASA, which begins tonight with two episodes. In the first, Mercury: Ordinary Supermen, questions abound as seven test pilots are chosen to become the country’s first astronauts. Will their rockets explode on the launching pad? Will they survive the stress of traveling more than 17,000 miles per hour? Will their blood boil? Will their eyes be ripped from their sockets? (Seriously, these were real questions at the time.) Ultimately, six of the seven traveled into space, including Alan Shepard, who made the program’s first manned flight (onboard a Mercury Redstone Rocket), and John Glenn, the first man to orbit the Earth. In the second episode, Gemini: Friends and Rivals, nine new astronauts arrive at NASA and are tasked with taking the first steps toward landing a man on the moon. They include Ed White, the first man to float freely in space, and Buzz Aldrin, who completed one of the most successful space walks ever. When We Left Earth will continue on June 15 and 22.
 
Master of Space (TLC, 9 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. Two Episodes. Joey Lawrence hosts this six-episode dancing competition series that tests its competitors’ moves by changing the songs they are dancing to in mid-performance. Five dancers will compete in each of the first five episodes, and the winner from each will move on to the Tournament of Champions Grand Finale.

Army Wives (Lifetime, 10 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. Somewhat lost last summer amid all the acclaim directed toward TNT’s Saving Grace, FX’s Damages, AMC’s Mad Men and USA Network’s Burn Notice, Lifetime’s serial drama about a group of women (and one man) living with their spouses and families on an active army post and the challenges they face when their loved ones are sent into combat debuted as the highest rated series in the network’s 24-year history and the No. 1 new original drama series on basic cable among women 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54. Maybe this season it will get more respect. If you’re already a fan, you’ve been breathlessly waiting to see what happens after the bombing at the Hump Bar in last summer’s shocking season finale. If you’re new to the show this is as good a time as ever to get hooked. Kim Delaney, Sally Pressman, Wendy Davis, Drew Fuller and Catherine Bell star.

 
 
 
MONDAY, JUNE 9
 
Rosie O’Donnell on Howard Stern’s Sirius Satellite Radio Show (YouTube)
There isn’t much to look at – this is just an audio recording with static images as visuals – but how can you resist an uncensored exchange between trash-talking tantrum-tossers Rosie O’Donnell and Howard Stern?
 
Nashville Star (NBC, 9 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. Two Hours. After five years on USA Network, television’s other great singing competition series moves to NBC as a centerpiece of its All American Summer programming. This two-hour season premiere includes highlights from the auditions, the first round of competition between the Top 12 finalists and a performance by Taylor Swift. Two finalists will be eliminated by the end of the telecast, which was taped at the Acuff Theater in Nashville. (Star will be live and viewers will begin voting for their favorites as of next week.) There are a few changes in store for fans of this franchise, which counts Miranda Lambert and Chris Young among its alumni. Billy Ray Cyrus is the host and prior host Jewel is now a judge. Anastasia Brown, the Simon Cowell of the show since its debut, has departed. Country superstar John Rich (of Big & Rich and most recently seen on television as the host of CMT’s Gone Country), and producer Jeffrey Steele will join Jewel at the judges’ stand.
 
Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired (HBO, 9 p.m. ET)
Premiere. Acclaimed director Roman Polanski (Rosemary’s Baby, Chinatown) fled to Europe in 1977 after his conviction for unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor in 1977. (He had sex with a 13 year old girl at the home of Jack Nicholson.) He continued to work, and was honored with an Academy Award as Best Director for The Pianist in 2002. This documentary examines the scandal, its immediate aftermath and long-term impact and other tragic events in Polanski’s life, including the murders of his mother by Nazis during the Holocaust and his wife, actress Sharon Tate, by followers of Charles Manson during their infamous 1969 killing spree. (Tate was eight months pregnant when they tortured and killed her.) Included is an interview with Samantha (Gailey) Geimer, Polanski’s victim that fateful night at Nicholson’s house. Geimer is now 45 years old and publicly forgave Polanski in 1997.
 
Alter Eco (Planet Green, 9 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. Entourage star Adrian Grenier is the executive producer and host of this new series that seeks to educate viewers and make clear how easy it is to reduce their carbon footprint.
 
GAC Nights (GAC, 10 p.m. ET)
Each episode of GAC’s nightly music, video and interview series GAC Nights this week was taped last week at the Riverfront Concert stages during the CMA Music Fest in Nashville. Suzanne Alexander is the host.
 
Commuter Confidential (TBS, 11 p.m. ET)
TBS’ new micro-series presented by Match.com and Revlon continues this week during nightly telecasts of Sex and the City. Each mini-sode premieres during a branded commercial pod and is then available on a micro-site within tbs.com . Confidential focuses on four women who travel to and from work together each day and discuss the intimate details of their lives while doing so, including their experiences with men they meet on Match.com and their love of Revlon products. It will run every weeknight during Sex through June 27.
 
 
 
TUESDAY, JUNE 10
 
The Alaska Experiment: Back from the Wild (Discovery Channel, 10 p.m. ET)
Premiere. Les Stroud (Survivorman!) is the host of this look back at the experiences of people featured in the recent Discovery Channel series The Alaska Experiment . They volunteered to live for three months with minimal supplies in the Alaskan wilderness and be constantly monitored physically and psychologically to see how well they were handling the demands of day to day survival.
 
30 Days (FX, 10 p.m. ET)
Former NFL player and Super Bowl champion Ray Crockett lives in a wheelchair for one month, during which he joins a wheelchair rugby team and attends a weekly support group for paraplegics.
 
Explorer: Science of Cats (National Geographic Channel, 10 p.m. ET)
How did humans and felines come to be so compatible? This edition of Explorer looks all the way back to the mummification of cats in ancient Egypt in search of answers.
 
 
 
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 11
 
So You Think You Can Dance (Fox, 8 p.m. ET)
Two Hours. The Top 20 dancers do their thing.
 
Celebrity Circus (NBC, 9:30 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. Ninety Minutes. Celebrities compete in circus-act challenges in this new reality series, which might remind viewers of Circus of the Stars, a long-running series of specials that started on CBS way back in 1977. Look for reality show regulars Antonio Sabato Jr., Christopher Knight, Jason “Wee Man” Acuna (from Jackass) and supermodel Rachel Hunter among the participants. Home viewers determine who gets kicked out of the tent each week. Joey Fatone is the host.
 
 
 
THURSDAY, JUNE 12
 
Million Dollar Password (CBS, 8 p.m. ET)
Nostalgia alert! Betty White, who made multiple appearances on the original Password in the Sixties and Seventies and married original host Allen Ludden, is one of the celebrity contestants on tonight’s special episode. She’ll be competing against Susie Essman (Curb Your Enthusiasm).
 
The A-List Awards Pre-Show (Bravo, 8:30 p.m. ET)
Premiere. Tim Gunn (Project Runway) hosts red-carpet arrival coverage for The A-List Awards, taped last week at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City and telecast later tonight on Bravo (see below).
 
The Road Hammers (GAC, 8:30 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. Jason Priestly (90210) is the director of this eight-episode observational reality series that focuses on the challenges faced by members of the award-winning Canadian country music band The Road Hammers as they relocate with their families to Nashville to take on the American market.
 
The Bill Engvall Show (TBS, 9 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. Comedian Bill Engvall and Nancy Travis (Becker) return for a second season of this very traditional sitcom about a Denver couple with three children striving to cope with the exasperating demands of modern parenthood. Tim Meadows (Saturday Night Live) co-stars.
 
Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List (Bravo, 9 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. Kathy Griffin, her assistants, her dogs and her gays return for a fourth season of her Emmy Award-winning observational reality series. Tonight’s episode shows her preparing to host CNN’s live coverage of the New Year’s Eve countdown with Anderson Cooper in Times Square and attending the 2008 Producer’s Guild Awards, at which My Life on the D-List loses to Discovery Channel’s Planet Earth. (Kathy’s upset. What did she think was going to happen?) In future episodes Griffin will perform at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., host Air New Zealand’s Pink Flight from San Francisco to Sydney and officiate at a wedding in Queens.

My Boys (TBS, 9:30 p.m. ET)
Season Premiere. Okay, so who is the guy on the plane who stepped up and sent that message to PJ (Jordana Spiro) at the end of Season 1? All we know is that it’s someone she wants to date. Is it globe-trotting reporter Thorn Packer (Jeremy Sisto), botanist Evan (Michael Landes) or Chicago Cubs player Mitt Dougan (Travis Schuldt)? Or is it one of her close guy friends – maybe one she had a brief fling with in the past? You’ll find out in tonight’s episode -- and then PJ and her date and Stephanie (Kellee Stewart) and her boyfriend Lance (Schuyler Yancey) will jet to Rome for a romantic adventure. Meantime, PJ’s brother Andy (Jim Gaffigan) and his now-pregnant wife move back to the city, meaning Andy will be around for those weekly poker games in PJ’s apartment.

 
Fear Itself (NBC, 10 p.m. ET)
While on a stake out in a haunted house, a private investigator is made to confront demons from his past. Eric Roberts, Cynthia Watros and Jack Noseworthy star.
 
Bravo’s A-List Awards (Bravo, 10 p.m. ET)
Premiere. Kathy Griffin hosts Bravo’s first awards show, The A-List Awards, honoring outstanding achievements in food, fashion, design, beauty and pop culture. Tila Tequila, Jack McBrayer (30 Rock), Dina and Ali Lohan, Tyson Beckford, Caroline Rhea, Candace Bushnell, Niki Taylor, Rachel Dratch, Christian Siriano, Tim Gunn, Padma Lakshmi, Jonathan Adler and the Housewives of both Orange County and New York City will appear. Legendary supermodel Lauren Hutton will receive the John Frieda Beauty Icon Award, and celebrities will model dresses designed by former Project Runway competitors during the show.
 
 
 
FRIDAY, JUNE 13
 
iCarly Saves TV (Nickelodeon, 8 p.m. ET)
Premiere. In a storyline that will resonate throughout the television industry, talented tweens Carly, Sam and Freddie are asked by a big broadcast network to adapt their popular Internet show for TV. Overjoyed at first, the kids quickly find themselves clashing with network executives at every turn and struggling to save the iCarly they know and love. Rachel Fox, unforgettable this season as bad seed Kayla on Desperate Housewives, plays Amber Tate, the diva poised to unseat Sam as Carly’s sidekick. Before this one-hour special, iCarly stars Miranda Cosgrove, Jennette McCurdy, Nathan Kress and Jerry Trainor will each host an hour of programming featuring their favorite iCarly episodes and carefully selected home-made videos of young viewers singing the iCarly theme song. (Your children have been uploading them to iCarly.com since May 24.)
 
F’N MTV Premieres (MTV, 8:30 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy is the host of this new weekly summer series featuring live performances, special celebrity guest appearances and the debut of new music videos. Panic at the Disco, Snoop Dogg, The Pussycat Dolls, Boys Like Us and Vampire Weekend are among the artists scheduled to appear on F’N MTV Premieres in the weeks ahead.
 
Can You Duet (CMT, 8 p.m. ET)
Season Finale. Two Hours. In the first part of tonight’s two-hour season finale, the final four duos perform on stage at the Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville, and one twosome is eliminated by hour’s end. In the second, the finalists will perform for the last time and host Rossi Morreale will reveal the winning duo. Country superstar Naomi Judd, vocal coach Brett Manning and songwriter Aimee Mayo are the judges.
 
Extraordinary Animals (Animal Planet, 9:30 p.m. ET)
Series Premiere. William Shatner is the narrator of this 17-episode series that looks at animals with special abilities, such as a piano-playing cat, a dolphin that can order her own lunch by communicating through sonar, a schnauzer that has accurately predicted the deaths of nearly 60 residents of a nursing home (by staying at their sides until they have passed away) and, in tonight’s premiere episode, an elephant named Hong with a talent for painting.
 
Battlestar Galactica (Sci Fi Channel, 10 p.m. ET)
Mid-Season Finale. Don’t even ask for details. Just expect the usual shocks this series always delivers when it reaches the end of a season (or, in this case, a half season). The real cliffhanger here is when Sci Fi Channel will schedule the remaining ten episodes of this landmark series.
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