Here’s what happened last week, and what to watch for next week:
- On the last full week of September, Macy Gray broke her cherry, Janice Dickinson got a new job, and Tom DeLay redefined masculinity, Richard Hatch stayed locked up,Julie Chen’s baby got out, and someone left their leg at Tribal Council. In addition, reality show Emmys went to familiar winners, prompting one winner to say the other winner should drop out (I agree).
- Friday, Sept. 25
This week began with a show I was excited about, Brick City, which ends tonight [Sundance Channel, 10 p.m.], and the another show I’m also excited about debuts tonight: Rescue Ink Unleashed [National Geographic Channel, 10 p.m.]. Its premise is simple: eight big guys with lots of tattoos rescue animals that are being abused by people. The Rescue Ink guys don’t quite beat those assholes up, but, um, scare them. Also debuting tonight: King of Clubs [Playboy TV, 9 p.m.], which follows a strip club owner in Las Vegas.
- Sunday, Sept. 27
First, Ken Burns’ latest documentary, The National Parks: America’s Best Idea, debuts [PBS] and airs its 12 hours over six nights. Sometime after Andy Rooney shuts up, The Amazing Race 15 [CBS, 8 p.m. or post-60 Minutes] will air its two-hour debut, and eliminate a team immediately. That makes sense on a show like Survivor, but on a race? What are they going to do, have a 50-yard dash? (It’s actually a mini-challenge.) Also, Sears appliances come to the rescue and make us cry when Extreme Makeover: Home Edition [ABC, 8 p.m.] returns with a celebrity guest each week. Also tonight: Action sports athletes’ daily lives are shown as they’re profiled on the new series Firsthand [Fuel TV, 8 p.m.]. Skater Lance Mountain is up first.
- Monday, Sept. 28
A&E’s Intervention [9 p.m.] and Hoarders [10 p.m.] end their seasons; I’ll review Hoarders Monday, but it’s incredible television, and I say that as someone who just can’t watch Intervention.
- Tuesday, Sept. 29
Shark Tank [ABC, 8 p.m.] moves to its new night and time, as do MTV’s highly manipulated reality shows The Hills [MTV, 10 p.m.] and The City [10:30 p.m.], as they return for the second halves of their latest seasons. Chopped [Food Network, 10 p.m.] ends its championship round, which was the most oddly structured championship round ever. And they still haven’t given Ted Allen anything to do.
- Wednesday, Sept. 30
A new series Bank of Mom and Dad [SOAPnet, 10 p.m.] follows a different 20-something woman each week whose parents move in with her to try “to rethink her spending habits and transform her relationship with money,” the network says. Also new: a show that explores the world of pageants. King of the Crown [TLC, 9 p.m.] follows pageant expert Cy Frakes and the staff of his pageant training business, Gowns and Crowns. I can’t believe we live in a world where there are pageant training businesses. Speaking of disbelief, The Real World/Road Rules Challenge‘s 18th season, The Ruins, debuts [MTV, 10 p.m.]; a team of famewhores who have won previous seasons compete against loser famewhores who haven’t.
- Thursday, Oct. 1
Survivor Samoa [CBS, 8 p.m.] better lose Ben or Russell H., or I’ll be in danger of losing everything I eat that day. And Project Runway 6 [Lifetime, 10 p.m.] brings back Michael Kors, and Nina Garcia better return soon. I don’t care if they have other jobs.