What to Watch This Weekend: The Season 2 Premieres of Comedy Bang! Bang! and The Newsroom and a Marathon of Rectify Season 1

What to watch on Friday, July 12...

7:30pm, Hub
Transformers Prime
Optimus Prime and Predaking square off while Megatron and Ratchet talk turkey in “Persuasion,” which, as the title indicates, is based on Jane Austen’s classic novel about 19th century social structures and giant punch-happy robots.

SERIES FINALE, 8pm & 9pm, The CW
Look, show, you can do whatever you like with Nate deciphering Kellian’s manuscript and True Believers hunting Jeff and Skye, but when you call an episode “1987,” it had better feature Matt Davis rocking full-on Bon Jovi hair. Once that's done, “Executive Producer Steven Rae” wraps the series as Jeff parlays with Nate and the Cult production team readies to shoot a hush-hush post-finale scene.

9pm, Disney
Gravity Falls
In “Dreamscaperers,” Lil’ Gideon has summoned a diabolical dream demon to plague Stan’s subconscious. Only Dipper, Mabel, and Soos can traverse his mind and expunge the evildoer.

9:25pm, Disney
Mickey Mouse
The Mickster hops a bullet train in “Tokyo Go,” only to be flummoxed by its throngs of mass transit enthusiasts. It’s a far cry from the freedom and solitude of captaining one’s own steamboat, that’s for sure.

9pm, Starz
Magic City
Ike and mob bigwig Sy Berman discuss a perilous proposition in “Crossroads,” while Ben throws a wrench in an arms deal with the Cubans. Meanwhile, Danny hitches his wagon to Jack Klein and discovers the truth about Ben Diamond in the process.

Comedy Bang! Bang!
Andy Samberg is the guest in the season opener. Presumably he’ll promote his upcoming Fox comedy Brooklyn Nine-Nine and feverishly deny that he’s the guy ruining Under the Dome.

10pm, Syfy
With a serial killer loose in Vancouver in “Second Truths,” Kiera taps into her future knowledge of the man’s past... er, present... er, whatever—point is, she knows what the dude is up to and plans to use that advantage to stop him. But is this the case where Carlos realizes something’s fishy about Kiera’s uncanny hunches?

– Bill Hader, Eliot Spitzer, and Passenger on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, 11:35pm, NBC
– Kristin Scott Thomas, Sam Rockwell, and Ciara featuring Future on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, 12:37am, NBC
– Jeff Daniels and Sarah Tiana on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, 12:37am, CBS


What to watch on Saturday, July 13...

8pm, ABC
Zero Hour
Congratulations, Hank, Beck, and Laila—your hunt for the True Cross has netted you an all-expenses-paid trip to the Faroe Islands! But Team White Vincent has also arrived in the North Atlantic in “Balance,” guided by a Passion Flower and determined to outpace Team Goose & Friends.

SERIES PREMIERE, 8:30pm, Nickelodeon
The Haunted Hathaways
Here’s the story of a lovely lady who was bringing up two very lovely girls... I don’t know what their hair looks like. Anyway, it’s also the story of a man named Preston, who was busy with two boys of his own. They were three men living altogether, but they were all alone, because they’re ghosts. 'Til the one day when the lady met this fellow, and they knew it was much more than a haunt. This group would somehow share a New Orleans domicile. That’s the way they all became the Haunted Hathaways.

666 Park Avenue
Granted, it’s a mite hubristic to title your season finale “Lazarus: Part 1.” But when the network that canceled you continues to bill the episode that way, well, that can’t help but feel like salt in the wound. Among the storylines that will certainly be resolved tidily with no loose ends whatsoever: Jane learns the stunning truth about her mother’s tenure at the Drake, Henry’s campaign excitement is tempered by a grim warning, and Gavin prepares to nix Jane’s father’s would-be heroics.

9pm, Syfy
When Sinbad falls hard for a captivating mystery woman in “The Siren,” he runs afoul of the cherished sailor’s code, “mateys before ladies.”

10pm, Syfy
Primeval: The New World
A posse of super-smart dinosaurs turns a local store into their home base in “Clean Up on Aisle Three.” It’s up to Evan, Dylan, and Mac to flush them out, but honestly, who’s rooting for the humans in this match-up? Go-getting dino entrepreneurs are the lifeblood of the Canadian economy. They probably ought to become the show’s new protagonists going forward.

SEASON 5 PREMIERE, 10pm, BBC America
Being Human U.K.
Hal, Tom, and Alex encounter grizzled old Captain Hatch, a man whose resume certainly includes haunting every abandoned amusement park in the United Kingdom. Elsewhere in “The Trinity,” new flatmate Alex adapts to ghostliness while a confined Hal is going stir-crazy.

10pm, NBC
Do No Harm
Good news, everyone! Ian is smitten with a fellow D.I.D. therapy-seeker in “A Stand-In,” and love is blossoming! Ehh whaaa? Her affection might be driven by a terminal medical condition? And Jason’s efforts to cure her might quash the courtship? Bad news, everyone!


What to watch on Sunday, July 14...

If you missed this highly lauded drama during its six-episode run on Sundance earlier this year, sister network AMC replays the full first season today. The series traces the social and psychological travails of Daniel Holden, a recently exonerated death row inmate who returns to a hometown that considers him anything but a prodigal son.

9pm, Lifetime
Drop Dead Diva
In “Cheaters,” Jane and Owen represent a teen accused of finagling his way through the SATs while Kim and Grayson defend a dog owner in a puppy paternity dispute. Out of court, Jane tasks Paul with monitoring Stacy’s increasingly odd behavior.

9pm, AMC
The Killing
Sarah vanishes, sending the investigation into overdrive in “Try.” Everybody just relax—she probably just took the week off to go host Saturday Night Live, like that time Buffy spent most of an episode as a rat. Elsewhere, Bullet comes to Lyric’s rescue and discovers a bone-chilling secret.

9pm, HBO
True Blood
“**** the Pain Away,” invites an episode so confident of its audience’s taste for vulgarity that some iterations of its title don’t even bother providing the first letter of that blanked-out word. In that spirit: This week, Lafayette summons Sookie’s dead parents for a ****, Eric and Tara go ***** to the wall to rescue Pam, Sarah and Jason *******, and Jessica ***** atonement.

9pm, Showtime
Dr. Vogel is all up in our boy’s gourd in “What’s Eating Dexter Morgan?” Will her mental machinations help or hinder his hunt for the Brain Surgeon? Meanwhile, Deb grapples with a bout of PTSD.

The Newsroom
Will talks himself out of participating in 9/11 anniversary coverage, Jim spells a reporter embedded with the Romney campaign, and Neal scopes out the nascent Occupy Wall Street movement. Yessir, it looks like “The First Thing We Do, Let’s Kill All the Lawyers” will waste no time cranking Season 2’s insufferability levels straight to SMUGCON-1.

10pm, Showtime
Ray Donovan
“Twerk” finds Mickey slinking back into Butch and Terry’s circle, Ezra staging a fundraiser, and Ray taking the business end of a 3-wood to whoever titled an episode of his series “Twerk.”

10pm, BBC America
Annie Reilly stirs the pot at Chez Corcoran in “I Defy Thee to Forget,” hampering the precinct’s quest to bring a cop-killer to justice. Meanwhile, Eva receives surprising support from Gen. Donovan, Maguire bumps into some erstwhile associates, and Elizabeth lends the Freemans a hand in an effort to assuage her conscience.

10pm, TNT
Falling Skies
The construction of a devastating alien weapon triggers internal conflicts and nagging doubts. Somewhere, Rod Serling is champing at the bit to explain how those social divides are the true weapon threatening us all. Elsewhere in “The Pickett Line,” a merry band of outlaws spells trouble for the Masons’ rescue mission, and the manhunt for a murderer hits a snag.

12am, Cartoon Network
The Venture Bros.
OSI recon of the Council of 13 hones in on a supervillain hotspot in “Bot Seeks Bot”—and lands Doc and Billy squarely in the soup.


And now, let’s all vote to crown the What to Watch Tonight Episode Title of the Week!

Comments (268)
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good night tonight.
some of these I need to catch up on. If anyone hasn't seen Rectify then try it out
That's a good selection of shows. I haven't seen Copper or Crossing Lines yet though. Thanks for recommending Vikings by the way. It was certainly good enough. I watched the whole season in three days.

I chose to not start watching Rectify until recently. I have seen three episodes now. I have to say that I'm not that impressed so far. I feel like nothing has happened yet. He got out, got home, found his old video game. That's three episodes, i.e. the first half of the season. Some of it has been enjoyable, like seeing him get out and get home, and explore the house. But a lot of it has been really dull. This includes almost the entire episode 2.
What, you mean there's not gonna be a "Lazarus, Part 2"?
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