TV best bets with ‘The Blacklist,’ ‘The Plot Against America,’ Reese Witherspoon & Kerry Washington in new Hulu series

Originally posted Monday, March 16, 2020 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

In the first full week of TV where the coronavirus is enveloping the cable news, there are plenty of alternatives, though not always comforting. 

HBO is launching a big David Simon alt-universe series presuming anti-semitic fascist Charles Lindbergh became president in 1940 called “The Plot Against America” Monday night. 

The network on Thursday then explores fake news and disinformation in a documentary on HBO. 

On Wednesday, Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon star in a new Hulu family drama series “Little Fires Everywhere.”

NBC brings back “The Blacklist” Friday. 

Two major reality shows shot in Atlanta are returning including “Love and Hip Hop Atlanta” on VH1 Monday night at 8 p.m. for its ninth season and TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress Atlanta’ comes back for its 11th season Saturday. 

Two scripted shows in Atlanta are debuting Thursday: the finale season of IFC’s ‘Brockmire” and the first Tyler Perry BET+ TV series “Ruthless.” 

And HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” finishes season 10 Sunday. 

This covers Monday, March 16 through Sunday, March 22, 2020. 

MONDAY

“9-1-1” 8 p.m. Fox — The 118 responds to a skydiving trip gone wrong, a bank rep injured in a home repossession and a lovestruck assistant whose lunch run ends in disaster.

“American Idol” 8 p.m. ABC — Hollywood week.

“Love and Hip Hop Atlanta” 8 p.m. VH1 (ninth season debut) — The primary cast remains the same. 

“Prodigal Son” 9 p.m. Fox — When a motorcycle gang robbery turns into a murder, Malcolm and team are called to the scene to investigate.

“The Plot Against America” 9 p.m. HBO (new series) —O n the eve of the 1940 election cycle, Herman Levin anticipates a promotion at work and taking his family to look at a house in an upwardly mobile neighborhood, though his wife, Bess, is wary of leaving the safety of their tight-knit community. 

“Bull” 10 p.m. CBS — Bull joins the defense team of a doctor who is an expert on anthrax after she was accused of terrorizing the city.

“Manifest” 10:01 p.m. NBC  When Grace's pregnancy complicates the pursuit of a calling, Ben finds himself working alongside an uneasy new ally.

“My Brilliant Friend” 10 p.m. HBO (second season)  Newly married Lila grows profoundly resentful of her husband, and finds new ways to carry on seeing Elena.

“Dispatches From Elsewhere” 10:05 p.m. AMC  Fred Wynn takes matters into his own hands but he needs his teammates to move on.

TUESDAY

“The Resident” 8 p.m. Fox — Conrad finds himself caught between his duties as a doctor and his loyalty to Kit, when he discovers that her son-in-law may be suffering from a serious disease.

“The Conners” 8 p.m. ABC— Harris is the boss of Darlene after her mom, desperate for money, gets a job at Price Warehouse.

“Empire” 9 p.m. Fox —Cookie continues to keep her secret from her sisters, but Lucious feels she needs to come clean in order to move forward.

“This is Us” 9 p.m. NBC — Randall reflects on what could have been.

“Cherish the Day” 10 p.m. OWN — Evan and Gently spend the day "shopping" for a counselor to help them address their issues, but it soon becomes apparent that their problems are deeper than either of them imagined.

“For Life” 10 p.m. ABC — While litigating on behalf of an inmate locked up on a robbery charge, Aaron is torn between doing what's right and what's best for his case.

WEDNESDAY

“Little Fires Everywhere” 8 p.m. Hulu (new series) Based on Celeste Ng's 2017 bestseller, Little Fires Everywhere follows the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and an enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. The story explores the weight of secrets, the nature of art and identity, the ferocious pull of motherhood - and the danger in believing that following the rules can avert disaster.

“Survivor” 8 p.m. CBS  The immunity challenge weighs heavily on castaways when two tribes are sent to tribal council. 

“SEAL Team” 9 p.m. CBS — The Bravo Team is tasked to protect a group of engineers from America who are building a dam.

“Chicago Fire” 9 p.m. NBC — Things get personal for Casey and Gallo in the aftermath of a suburban house fire involving a mother and her young son.

“Lego Masters” 9:01 p.m. Fox — The remaining contestants are given the opportunity to showcase their creativity when they are tasked with interpreting a story that is read aloud from a book selected just for this competition.

“S.W.A.T.” 10 p.m. CBS — The SWAT team's search for an abducted teen leads them to a member of the Witness Protection Program and a decades-old political extremist group.

“Brockmire” 10 p.m. IFC (fourth season debut) — It's 2030 and the world is in chaos but at least Jim is broadcasting baseball and has his daughter.

“Twenties” 10 p.m. BET — Time is against Hattie as she dashes through Hollywood on various assignments from Ida B. Meanwhile, Nia struggles in an audition.

THURSDAY

“Feel Good” 3:01 a.m. Netflix (new series)  Comedian Mae Martin co-created and stars in this witty, touching series that draws on her own life experiences.

“Ruthless” 3:01 a.m. BET+ (new series) — A spin-off of the hit television series “Tyler Perry’s The Oval,” tells the riveting story of a woman named Ruth who kidnaps her young daughter to join her in the dark underworld of a fanatical religious cult. 

“Station 19” 8 p.m. ABC  When an Army veteran threatens to blow up a pawn shop, Sullivan reflects on his time as a Marine to deescalate the situation.

“Last Man Standing” 8 p.m. Fox  Mike and Chuck compete in Outdoorman's Annual Chili Cook-Off.

“Superstore” 8 p.m. NBC  When Amy has to bring her baby to the store, she grows frustrated with people's criticisms of her parenting and Glenn enlists Jerusha to help.

“After Truth: Disinformation and the Cost of Fake News” 9 p.m. HBO — A look at the ongoing threat caused by the phenomenon of "fake news" in the U.S., focusing on the real-life consequences that disinformation, conspiracy theories and false news stories have on the average citizen.

“Deputy” 9 p.m. Fox — Charlie, Joseph and Carter investigate a case that becomes more complicated at every turn, while Bishop and Cade make a connection to a homicide they never expected.

“Grey’s Anatomy” 9 p.m. ABC — Meredith heads up a pro bono surgery day, but the patient's response causes her to struggle to keep things in order.

“Will & Grace” 9 p.m. NBC  When Will's surrogate, Jenny, tells Will their relationship needs boundaries, Will ropes newly-out Dr. DiLorenzo into going on a fake date so he can spy on Jenny.

“Top Chef” 10 p.m. Bravo (17th season debut) — Sixteen former "Top Chef" players vie for a record $250,000 including Atlanta's Kevin Gillespie, who came in third season six. 

“Coronavirus Pandemic” 10 p.m. NBC — Update on the crisis. 

“A Million Little Things” 10:01 p.m. ABC — Eddie becomes obsessed with trying to resolve mistakes from his past, and Shelly and Delilah both take on planning a baby shower for Regina as Eve gives her and Rome shocking news.

FRIDAY

The Banker” 3:01 a.m. Apple TV+ — A film about black entrepreneurs in the 1950s and 1960s who found ways to buy banks and apartments. Anthony Mackie and Samuel L. Jackson stars. The movie was shot in metro Atlanta. 

“The English Game" 3:01 a.m. Netflix (new series)  The invention of football (soccer) and how it rose to become the world's game by crossing class divides.

“The Blacklist” 8 p.m. NBC (seventh season debut) — With the help of the Task Force, Red tracks a gifted art forger who has thwarted his plans to sell stolen pieces.

“Shark Tank” 8 p.m. ABC — Friends from Tempe and Phoenix, Arizona, introduce the Sharks to the future with their stylish and affordable mobile real estate concept.

WEEKEND

“Say Yes to the Dress Atlanta” 8 p.m. Saturday TLC (11th season debut) — Bride Jessica wants a revealing dress, but her conservative entourage has a different vision in mind.

“American Idol” 8 p.m. Sunday ABC — Hollywod week duets. 

“The Real Housewives of Atlanta” 8 p.m. Sunday Bravo — Kenya and NeNe are at each other's throats yet again. 

“Outlander” 8 p.m. Sunday Starz — Jamie and Claire's life in America is under threat as they are pinned between the unrest and the Crown

“Homeland” 9 p.m. Sunday Showtime — Saul finds an ally.

“Westworld” 9 p.m. Sunday HBO — People put up a lot of walls, so it's a good idea to carry a sledgehammer.

“The Walking Dead” 9 p.m. Sunday AMC — Michonne takes Virgil back to his mysterious island to reunite with his family. 

“Zoe’s Extraordinary Playlist” 9 p.m. Sunday NBC — Zoey is forced to admit some hard truths to Max.

“Good Girls” 10 p.m. Sunday NBC — A guilty Beth convinces the women to go to grisly lengths to keep Max out of harm's way.

“The Rookie” 10 p.m. Sunday ABC — Officer Nolan is having a particularly bad day after learning his identity has been stolen and could jeopardize his position as an officer.

“Black Monday” 10 p.m. Sunday Showtime — Mo attempts to extricate Keith from a problematic situation

“Curb Your Enthusiasm” 10 p.m. Sunday HBO (10th season finale) — Title is called "Spite Store."

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
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