TV.com's pick of the best TV shows on Aussie screens this week.
American Music Awards
Live. There's a who's who of music acts performing live at the Nokia Theatre, including The Black Eyed Peas, Train, Enrique Iglesias, Taylor Swift, Kid Rock, Miley Cyrus, Carlos Santana, Backstreet Boys, New Kids on the Block, Rihanna, Diddy Dirty Money, Ne-Yo, Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Ke$ha, Christina Aguilera, Bon Jovi, Pink and Usher. If that doesn't grab your attention, nothing will! Repeated at 8:35pm.
Airs: 12pm Monday on FOX8
New series. Scott Tweedie is back with ABC3's most popular show, and a stunt that involves fast cars, explosions, ninjas and post-it notes. You'll see how all the gags are set up before one teen leaves his best friend looking awe-struck. Good fun, but do not attempt this at home.
Airs: 6:30pm Monday on ABC3
The X Factor
Live final. Tonight Altiyan, Sally or Andrew will be crowned winner of Seven's 2010 singing contest and after Sunday's final sing-off Sally Chatifield may well have levelled the battle with Altiyan Childs. Returning to perform are Jamiroquai, INXS and James Blunt.
Airs: 7:30pm Monday on Seven
Gwyneth Paltrow guest stars as substitute teacher Holly Holliday, singing a mash-up of "Singin' in the Rain" and "Umbrella" with Will (Matthew Morrison) plus Cee-Lo's "Forget You." Watch for the fantasy sequence with kids playing junior versions of the teenagers.
Airs: 7:30pm Monday on TEN
Talkin' 'Bout Your Generation
Final. It's beginning to look a lot like a Christmas special in November, but even Shaun Micallef admits it's a shameless ploy -- and that's just why we love him. This week it's time for Jennifer Byrne, Chas Licciardello and Hamish Blake (seriously, he's everywhere) to tackle festive questions. Funniest moment is the disembodied reindeer terrorising Blake and Josh Thomas.
Airs: 7:30pm Tuesday on TEN
Final. After being disqualified from a renovation challenge, Erin and Jake seem to be on the outer with their neighbours whilst Brenton and Chez are basking in the glory of an engagement (a little trick The Amazing Race also borrowed last week). But here we are at the final auction, to see who can net the biggest profit margin and take home $100,000 cash. Previously a record-breaking event, how high can it reach this year? To be followed by the premiere of the much-hyped new chat show Warnie at 9:10pm.
Airs: 7:30pm Wednesday on Nine
Final. Seven has a double episode to end the year, beginning with the murder of a prostitute who was luring a lonely widower. This case doesn't offer much, so turn your attention to the rebuttal from Jennifer (Nadine Garner) to Nick (John Adams) or wait for the second episode. The next question for the show is whether Seven will renew this series for 2011. The signs don't look too promising, which would be a shame given the excellent cast and its track-record of solid episodes.
Airs: 8:30pm Wednesday on Seven
Premiere. Move over Jersey Shore and The Hills, Australia now has its own "reality drama" as nine girls and three guys allow cameras to follow their lives on the north shores of Sydney. Who hooks up with whom, who goes on a bender, who spits the dummy ... it's all up for grabs. While nothing is scripted this genre is still known for having producers help the story move along with situations designed to deliver an outcome. If it looks too pretty then the job is halfway done.
Airs: 4:30pm Thursday on MTV
Beauty and the Geek Australia
Final. Speaking of "reality drama" here's another, and it's a show that has netted Seven better figures than The X Factor at a fraction of the price. There are four couples in the running for $100,000 prize but first they will have to try their luck at a pentathlon and a Beauty & Geek wedding. It's a 90 minutes episode as host Bernard Curry does his darnedest to make it look like something just a tad more important than opposites attract.
Airs: 8:30pm Thursday on Seven
New series. If you saw last season's finale (which is yet to screen on free-to-air TV) you'll know we start this new season from a mind-numbing position. Dexter (Michael C. Hall) faces an uncertain future, forced to question himself and the path set for him by his father. While his colleagues show due concern, so far he isn't forced to explain himself in much detail. But Detective Joey Quinn (Desmond Harrington) is already following leads that could begin to unravel Dexter 's secret.
Airs: 8:30pm Thursday on Showcase
Premiere. This four-part UK drama series is written by Australian screenwriter Fiona Seres (Tangle, Love My Way). A deaf teenage girl who views the world from a unique perspective is witness to the murder of a policewoman. But as she tries to break free from over-protective parents and join wild, partying boys, she could also find herself becoming a potential victim. Intriguing concept from the inside looking out with some solid performances.
Airs: 8:30pm Friday on ABC1
Lights Camera Party: Television City Celebrates
Live special. Truly the end of an era as GTV9 bids farewell to its Richmond studios, where so many iconic shows have been staged: In Melbourne Tonight, The Don Lane Show, Hey Hey! It's Saturday, The Paul Hogan Show, Sale of the Century, The Sullivans, The Footy Show and more. A star-studded roll-call will gather for this two hour nostalgic ride hosted by Bert Newton and Eddie McGuire. Thanks for the memories.
Airs: 9:40pm Saturday on Nine
Who Do You Think You Are?
New series. One of Australia's favourite performers searches her family tree in this outstanding series. Magda Szubanski's father escaped the Nazis in Poland and her mother has Scottish heritage, but what she learns about her unknown Irish roots will leave her in tears. Tellingly, her family used humour as a coping measure, a trait that lives with her today. Highly recommended.
Airs: 7:30pm Sunday on SBS ONE