What to watch on Friday, February 1...
SERIES PREMIERE, Whenever you feel like it, Netflix
House of Cards
The entire 13-episode series, from executive producers David Fincher and Kevin Spacey, begins streaming on Netflix at midnight Pacific/3am Eastern, so you can chip away at your idealistic faith in the American political system one installment at at time or bludgeon it to a pulp in a marathon viewing session. Spacey stars as a conniving congressman with grand ambitions—and a vendetta against the new U.S. president.
The NAACP Image Awards
The iconic civil rights organization holds its 44th annual celebration of achievement in the arts, with nominees from the realm of TV including Aziz Ansari, Donald Glover, and Kerry Washington. Steve Harvey hosts live from Los Angeles.
A Boston Market exec puts the “officer” in Chief Brand Officer when she must personally enforce company policy. In a series first, her stint on the front lines of fast-casual chain dining leads to a rambunctious employee getting canned.
8pm, The CW
Ryan sends a team to rescue his abducted girlfriend from the clutches of a rogue agent, but you just know that the first seven places the team checks they’re gonna be told that she’s in another castle. Elsewhere in “Survival Instincts,” Nikita is thrown for a loop when Owen, rather than Michael, joins her in the field.
Spartacus: War of the Damned
Spartacus and Co. plan to capture a Roman city to house their burgeoning community in “Wolves at the Gate.” Meanwhile, Crassus’s growing force gains a major, if unpredictable, asset with the arrival of a brash young military commander: Julius Caesar.
When a man riddled with rat bites is thrown from a moving car in “Inside Jobs,” Danny tries to find out who was sending a message and why. Come to think of it, has anyone seen the kid from Ben around lately?
– Wanda Sykes, Tyler Hamilton, and Brandford Marsalis on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, 11:35pm, NBC
– Kevin Spacey, Nick Griffin, and Emeli Sandé on Late Show with David Letterman, 11:35pm, CBS
– Highlights from earlier in the week on Jimmy Kimmel Live, 11:35pm, ABC
– Jason Bateman, Zosia Mamet, and Andrea Bocelli on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, 12:37am, NBC
– Joe Theismann and Ariel Tweto on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, 12:37am, CBS
WHAT ARE YOU WATCHING ON FRIDAY?
What to watch on Saturday, February 2...
10:30am, Cartoon Network
This week’s outing is called “Runaways.” Could the title indicate that, with the cancellation writing on the wall, our heroes are throwing DC-Marvel rivalry and licensing concerns to the wind and launching a rogue crossover with another band of juvenile superfolk? Probably not!
SERIES FINALE, 8pm, Nickelodeon
Mr. Sikowitz dares the kids to respond in the affirmative for a full day in “Victori-Yes,” the series finale. Such blatant inversion of Nancy Reagan’s famous advice to America’s youths can only lead down a road of debaucherous ruin. Or possibly to a send-off full of family-friendly hijinks.
9pm, BBC America
Cholera fears grip London, but some of the bodies turning up in Jackson’s morgue show evidence of deliberate ergot poisoning (which was nicknamed “St. Anthony’s Fire” back then, because the Victorians were streets ahead of us at hanging monikers on maladies). Naturally the team races to uncover a pattern behind the mounting death toll.
SPECIAL NIGHT AND TIME, 10:05pm & 10:35pm, HBO
Girls & Enlightened
Rather than pit its two Sunday-night comedies against an event likely to draw literally fifty times their combined average viewership, HBO is just gonna leave a couple of new episodes right here for you on Saturday (they're also already available on HBOGO). Hannah throws a dinner party that spirals into immaturity in “It’s A Shame About Ray,” while Amy discovers the brave new world of social media and Tyler fends off Dougie’s investigation in “Follow Me.”
WHAT ARE YOU WATCHING ON SATURDAY?
What to watch on Sunday, February 3...
3pm, Animal Planet
Puppy Bowl IX
Puppies caper. Hedgehogs cheerlead. Kitties perform at halftime. Hamsters survey the proceedings from tiny blimps. Meep the Bird live-tweets the entire spectacale. Humans bask in a much-needed oasis from the unrelenting deluge of stupid that marks their own, severely less adorable species.
LIVE, 6:30pm Eastern, CBS
Super Bowl XLVII
America’s annual flash card reminding us how roman numerals work returns for its 47th season. The Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers square off in a footballing match at New Orleans’s palatial I’m Not Bothering To Google Its Corporate Sponsor Superdome. Beyoncé and her reunited Destiny’s Child squadmates are scheduled to perform at halftime, which should occur about four and half hours after kickoff.
All the other networks flee into repeats tonight, but the Granthams are not so timid (though it's worth noting that, as of Tuesday, the rest of the season is already legally available on iTunes/DVD). They greet your so-called American football with a curt “pish-tosh!” and soldier on with a new episode, which finds Robert at odds with both Cora and Matthew. The esteemed residents of Downton didn’t let the Jerries slow them down and they’ll be damned if they let the 49ers do so! Stiff upper lip and all that rot.
SPECIAL POST-SUPER BOWL EPISODE, 10pm or whenever the game actually ends, CBS
Sherlock and Joan earn the coveted post-Super Bowl slot, but even that honor may not help Joan stave off the threat of eviction from her apartment. The case of the week in “The Deductionist” pairs Holmes with an FBI profiler on the trail of an unpredictable criminal played by guest-star Terry Kinney. He’s so unpredictable, even the episode summary doesn’t know what he’ll do next!
SPECIAL POST-SUPER BOWL EPISODE, 11:35pm, CBS
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
Cool down from ~17 hours of gridiron glory and artery annihilation with a star-studded special installment of The Late Late Show. Guests include Steve Carell, Channing Tatum, Julie Chen, Neil Patrick Harris, Nikki Reed, and Drew Brees.
WHAT ARE YOU WATCHING ON SUNDAY?