Summer brings more scientific proof that TV’s oceans are indeed rising with a glut of content. Among other unnatural disasters between now and Labor Day, Syfy has a D.C.-based “Sharknado” movie (July 22) and there’s a Lifetime movie about the behind-the-scenes drama at “Full House.” (It airs in the doggiest of dog days, Aug. 22.)
Want more bad news? We say goodbye to Jon Stewart on Aug. 6. Perhaps something to cheer you up? More zombies, with AMC’s “Fear the Walking Dead” spinoff series still expected in August (no firm date yet).
Quantity once again trumps quality — especially this summer — but in this chronological list of new series, specials, documentaries and reality shows, I’ve noted a few things that might merit a glance. (Who would have ever expected a David Simon/Paul Haggis HBO miniseries about public housing?)
Although it’s my job to watch too much TV, don’t forget that it’s your duty to spend your precious summer evenings in the best way possible — so don’t forget the beautiful freedom that can be found with the “off” button. Enjoy.
(* = Worth a look)
IN PROGRESS …
*”UnREAL”(Mondays at 10 on Lifetime) Delectably cruel fictional drama is a near-perfect send-up of life behind the scenes of a “Bachelor”-type reality show. Premiered June 1.
“The Whispers” (Mondays at 10 on ABC) This mediocre drama starts off with the usual spooky children of the leafy D.C. suburbs talking to “imaginary” friends with malevolent plans. Lily Rabe (“American Horror Story”) plays the federal agent who realizes that an unseen power is trying to get through our national security system through these kids. It never gets above a ho-hum level. Premiered June 1.
“Secrets and Wives” (Tuesdays at 10 on Bravo) Reality show hangs out with perfectly awful Long Island women who’ve known one another since fuh-evuh. Premiered June 2.
“Stitchers” (Tuesdays at 9 on ABC Family) Drama series. A young woman is recruited into a secret government program that “stitches” her into the minds of the recently deceased as a way to solve crime. Premiered June 2.
“Sense8″(Netflix streaming) Tedious but stylish sci-fi series from the Wachowskis (“The Matrix”) about eight strangers who discover that their minds are linked. Premiered June 5.
“100 Things to Do Before High School” (Saturdays at 8 on Nickelodeon) Hipped by her big brother to the many bummers of high school, a 12-year-old girl decides to make the most of life with her BFFs before they have to face freshman year. Premiered June 6.
“Mummies Alive” (Sundays at 9 on Smithsonian Channel) Docuseries travels to many continents to look at ancient mummies and mummification rituals. Hosted by non-yet-mummified actor Jason Priestley. Premiered June 7.
*”Odd Mom Out”(Mondays at 10 on Bravo) Scripted comedy series from writer/star Jill Kargman about wealthy mommies on the Upper East Side. Abby Elliott and Joanna Cassidy co-star. Premiered June 8.
“Becoming Us” (Mondays at 9 on ABC Family) Drama series about a teenager named Ben whose father is becoming a woman. Premiered June 8.
“Dark Matter”(Fridays at 10 on Syfy) Drama series based on the Dark Horse comic book about six people who wake up and have no idea how they all wound up on the same spaceship. Premiered June 12.
“Dare to Wear” (Fridays at 10 on TLC) Fashion disasters from opposite sides of the wardrobe spectrum have to switch closets and wear the other person’s clothes and shoes. Premiered June 12.
*”Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell” (Saturdays at 10 on BBC America) Based on the best-selling novel by Susanna Clarke, seven-part miniseries stars Eddie Marsan and Bertie Carvel as 18th-century magicians who join England’s war against Napoleon. Premiered June 13.
“The Making of the Mob” (Mondays at 10 on AMC) For viewers who never tire of the mafia, Ray Liotta narrates this eight-part documentary series about the history of organized crime in New York in the early 20th century — material you should be somewhat familiar with if you watched “Boardwalk Empire.” Premiered June 15.
“Over My Dead Body”(Mondays at 10 on Investigation Discovery) Actress Linda Hamilton (of the early “Terminator” movies) hosts docuseries that tells true stories of women who fought off attackers. Premiered June 15.
“Proof”(Tuesdays at 10 on TNT) Drama series about a tech guru with cancer (Matthew Modine) who persuades a grieving surgeon (Jennifer Beals) to investigate cases of near-death and afterlife experiences. Premiered June 16.
“Clipped” (Tuesdays at 10 on TBS) Sitcom from “Will & Grace” creators about a hipster barbershop in Massachusetts staffed by people who all went to high school together. Premiered June 16.
*”Deutschland 83″ (Wednesdays at 11 on Sundance TV) This German-subtitled drama makes a nice companion piece to FX’s “The Americans,” as a 24-year-old East German man (Jonas Nay) is chosen to spy for the Stasi as a West German soldier during the 1980s. Premiered June 17.
THURSDAY, JUNE 18
“Complications” (Thursdays at 9 on USA) Drama/thriller series from “Burn Notice” creator Matt Nix stars Jason O’Mara (“Terra Nova”) as a suburban doctor who saves the victim of a drive-by shooting that turns out to be a much more significant incident than it first seemed. Thursday, June 18.
*”The Astronaut Wives Club” (Thursdays at 8 on ABC) Drama series based on Lily Koppel’s book about the women behind NASA’s pioneering astronauts. Sort of a fizzier twist on “The Right Stuff.” Thursday, June 18.
“Alone” (Thursdays at 10 on History) Ten survivalists (all guys) are dropped off in the Vancouver Island wilderness, separated from one another and left on their own, without even a camera crew or producers. Thursday, June 18.
FRIDAY, JUNE 19
“Killjoys” (Fridays at 9 on Syfy) Ten-episode series about bounty hunters in space, but not in the Boba Fett mold. Friday, June 19.
SUNDAY, JUNE 21
“Celebrity Family Feud” (ABC at 8) Perhaps the only thing left for idle celebs to do — game shows. This one features the families of Dr. Phil, Mario Lopez, “Glee’s” Kevin McHale and more. Sunday, June 21
“Battle Bots”(ABC at 9) Six-episode revival of the robot-combat competition series from the early 2000s. Sunday, June 21
“Big Crazy Family Adventure”(Travel at 9) Follow Bruce Kirby and Christine Pitkanen and their young sons (ages 7 and 3) as they go on an extremely challenging family trip to a Himalayan monastery, covering 13,000 miles and taking no airplanes to get there. (Probably no iPads, either.) Sunday, June 21
“Anne Frank’s Holocaust” (National Geographic at 9) Two-hour special traces what probably happened to Anne Frank (and so many others) in a Nazi concentration camp after her famous diary comes to an abrupt end on Aug. 4, 1944. Sunday, June 21
MONDAY, JUNE 22
*”Requiem for the Dead: American Spring 2014″ (HBO at 9) Documentary artfully assembled from social network postings and police files tells the stories of some of the 8,000 or so Americans who died from gunfire in the spring of last year, including accidents, domestic violence, suicides, murders and other incidents. Monday, June 22
“POV: Out in the Night”(PBS; check local listings) Follows the roles that sexual identity and gender played in the case of a group of African-American lesbians who were charged with the attempted murder of a man who threatened them on a New York street. Monday, June 22
“Forged in Fire” (History at 10) Master bladesmiths compete against one another to craft the perfect weapon, using raw steel. Monday, June 22
TUESDAY, JUNE 23
“Love Can’t Weight”(ABC at 9) Three-episode companion series to “Extreme Weight Loss.” Tuesday, June 23
*”Another Period” (Comedy Central at 10:30) Creators Natasha Leggero and Riki Lindhome’s clever mash-up of a Kardashian-style reality show and a “Downton Abbey”-esque drama, about the travails of the Bellacourt family (and their servants) in uppercrust Newport, Rhode Island, at the turn of the 20th century. Tuesday, June 23
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 24
*”First Peoples” (PBS, check local listings) Five-part docuseries depicts human evolution on each continent, focusing in on the daily struggles and triumphs of our long-ago ancestors. Wednesday, June 24
THURSDAY, JUNE 25
“Boom!” (Fox at 8) Based on a popular Israeli game show, contestants have to answer trivia questions to help them defuse a “bomb” before it goes off. Thursday, June 25
FRIDAY, JUNE 26
*”What Happened, Miss Simone?” (Netflix streaming) Liz Garbus’s documentary about the singer and activist Nina Simone. Friday, June 26
“Teen Beach 2” (Disney Channel at 8) A sequel to the goofy/retro beach-themed musical. Friday, June 26
“Dennis Rodman’s Big Bang in Pyongyang” (Showtime at 9) Documentary follows the former NBA star, who has an unlikely friendship with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, as he tries to stage a friendly basketball game in the country to promote peace between to the two nations. Friday, June 26
SUNDAY, JUNE 28
“Glen Campbell … I’ll Be Me” (CNN at 9) TV premiere of the acclaimed documentary about the country singer’s struggle with Alzheimer’s. In her review last November, Washington Post film critic Ann Hornaday said it “may make for a tough movie, but it’s an important and triumphant one, as well.” Sunday, June 28
MONDAY, JUNE 29
*”Larry Kramer in Love & Anger”(HBO at 9) Intimate documentary portrait of the gay rights and AIDS activist, a playwright and author who found his loudest voice as a political firebrand. Monday, June 29
*”POV: The Overnighters”(PBS; check local listings) Documentary about a church pastor in a booming North Dakota town who decides to open his church to house oil workers with few options and some sketchy backgrounds. Monday, June 29
TUESDAY, JUNE 30
*”Scream” (MTV at 10) Drama/horror series updates the giddy, tongue-in-cheek murder spree of the 1996 movie and its many sequels, adding modern touches (viral videos instead of creepy landline calls) and a new take on the Ghostface mask worn by the killer. Tuesday, June 30
“1913: Seeds of Conflict” (PBS, check listings) Documentary film explores the origins of the Middle East conflict in pre-World War I Ottoman Palestine. Tuesday, June 30
“Watt’s World” (Travel at 10) Award-winning journalist and producer Nick Watt takes a “full immersion” approach on his worldwide trek to uncover strange, wild and wondrous destinations. Tuesday, June 30
WEDNESDAY, JULY 1
“Monster in My Family”(LMN at 9) Docuseries introduces the relatives of serial killers to members of the victims’ families. (Trigger alert? Or just an uncomfortable shudder?) Wednesday, July 1
“Food Paradise International” (Travel at 9) Another show about incredibly good food (or food that at least looks good) discovered (or re-discovered) in faraway places. Wednesday, July 1
“Epic Attractions” (Travel at 10) Learn some of the secrets to building and maintaining some of the world’s most thrilling theme-park rides. Perhaps download this show to help pass the hours spent waiting in epically long lines at theme parks. Wednesday, July 1
SATURDAY, JULY 4
“A Capitol Fourth”(PBS at 8) The 35th anniversary of the holiday broadcast from the National Mall. Saturday, July 4
“39th Annual Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular” (NBC at 8) For people who are absolutely certain that everything is better in New York, a live fireworks display from two spots on the East River. Saturday, July 4
MONDAY, JULY 6
“POV: Tough Love” (PBS, check listings) Documentary film follows parents who are seeking a second chance to parent their children, who’ve been entrusted to the care of the foster system. Monday, July 6
TUESDAY, JULY 7
“Running of the Bulls 2015” (Esquire beginning at 2 a.m., one-hour highlights show at 11 p.m.) Live coverage of the annual event in Pamplona, Spain, hosted by the “Men in Blazers” comedy duo Michael Davies and Roger Bennett. Tuesday, July 7
“The Seven Year Switch”(FYI at 9) Four couples who’ve hit a wall in their relationships get a chance to spend two weeks in an “experimental” marriage with a different mate, to see if a different perspective addresses some of their issues. Tuesday, July 7
“Hollywood Cycle” (E! at 10) Reality series about the cycle workout culture in L.A., as everyone pedals furiously toward hell. Tuesday, July 7
WEDNESDAY, JULY 8
“Million Dollar Listing San Francisco”(Bravo at 10) More real-estate sadomasochism, in what is arguably the nation’s most competitive market. Wednesday, July 8
*”Why? With Hannibal Buress” (Comedy Central at 10:30) Topical comedy series (it’s taped within a week of airdate, to keep it newsy) features comedian Buress’ stand-up, taped segments (that may well be the next “smart comedian take” videos filling up your Twitter feed) and interviews. Premieres after the season return of “Key and Peele.” Wednesday, July 8
“The Spoils Before Dying”(IFC at 9) Prolonging a very windy joke that started with “The Spoils of Babylon,” this miniseries adapts the first epic novel of faux-best-selling author Eric Jonrosh (Will Ferrell). Wednesday, July 8
THURSDAY, JULY 9
“Dates” (CW at 9) A British dramedy series in which each episode tells the story of a first date between two people who met online. Cast changes from week to week. Thursday, July 9
“One Bad Choice” (MTV at 11) Ten-episode docuseries talks to teens who each made a single terrible decision that wound up affecting their lives and the lives of others. Thursday, July 9
FRIDAY, JULY 10
“Chris Tucker Live”(Netflix streaming) Stand-up comedy special from someone we haven’t seen onstage in a while. Friday, July 10
“Sex With Brody”(E! at 10:30) Talk show derived from gossip-mag hottie and “sex enthusiast” Brody Jenner’s podcast about all things relationships, hookups, etc. It’s only four episodes. (Seems a little quick, Brody.) Friday, July 10
SATURDAY, JULY 11
*”7 Days in Hell” (HBO at 10) Mockumentary looks back at a legendary, record-breaking tennis match between two rivals, played by “Game of Thrones'” Kit Harington and “Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s” Andy Samberg. Saturday, July 11
“Livin’ Lozada” (OWN at 9) Reality series follows “Basketball Wives” star Evelyn Lozada as her life takes some new directions. Saturday, July 11
“Morgan Spurlock Presents Freedom! The Movie” (CMT at 9) Documentary film from the “Super Size Me” producer explores the idea of independence and whether we’re all still truly liberated in today’s America. Saturday, July 11
SUNDAY, JULY 12
“Fan Fest featuring MTV2 Fandom Awards” (MTV2 at 9) Don’t let the convoluted title confuse you — it’s a Comic-Con thing. Sunday, July 12
“2015 Miss USA Pageant” (NBC at 8) Love your hair, hope you win! Sunday, July 12
MONDAY, JULY 13
“My Depression: The Up and Down of It” (HBO at 9) Short, animated documentary follows theater director/composer Elizabeth Swados’s decades-long struggle with depression. Monday, July 13
*”POV: Web Junkie” (PBS, check local listings) Documentary about how China treats teenagers diagnosed with Internet addiction, which the government has declared a national health crisis. Monday, July 13
TUESDAY, JULY 14
*”American Experience: Blackout”(PBS, check local listings) Revisits New York’s big power outage in the summer 1977 , which caused mayhem but also inspired acts of surprising generosity. Tuesday, July 14
WEDNESDAY, JULY 15
*”Impastor” (TV Land at 10:30) Dramedy stars Michael Rosenbaum as a man running from gambling debt who takes an opportunity to assume the identity of a gay pastor at a church in a small town. Wednesday, July 15
*”I Am Jazz”(TLC at 10) Docuseries about a 14-year-old transgender girl who’s getting ready to start high school. Wednesday, July 15
“The Jim Gaffigan Show” (TV Land at 10) Lighter than “Louie” (but sort of like it), this comedy is based on the career and home life of Jim Gaffigan, a married comedian with many children. Wednesday, July 15
“2015 ESPYS”(ABC at 8) Awards show for the best in sports programming, otherwise known as the night that sports-obsessed viewers are more likely to recognize the stars on the red carpet. All eyes this year on Caitlyn Jenner, who is scheduled to receive the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. Wednesday, July 15
“Twinning” (VH1 at 10) Reality/competition. Sets of twins test their intuition theory to compete against one another for a cash prize of $222,222.22. Wednesday, July 15
*”Nova: Chasing Pluto” (PBS, check local listings) This special will feature what we all hope are some really nifty close-up shots from the New Horizon probe of the faraway planet-that’s-not-a-planet. (All eyes on Caitlyn Jenner, still.) Wednesday, July 15
THURSDAY, JULY 16
“Geeks Who Drink” (Syfy at 11:30) Game show based on pop-culture trivia contests in pubs. Thursday, July 16
“Reactor” (Syfy at 11:30) Comedy/talk show hosted by David Huntsberger with a focus on pop culture and science-fiction. Thursday, July 16
SUNDAY, JULY 19
*”Tut” (Spike at 9) Limited original series (three nights; six hours) about the young Egyptian king Tutankhamun (Avan Jogia) and the palace politics occurring around him. Ben Kingsley co-stars as Tut’s closest adviser. Sunday, July 19
MONDAY, JULY 20
“Packed in a Trunk” (HBO at 9) Documentary traces the story of Provincetown, Massachusetts, painter Edith Lake Wilkinson, who was committed to an asylum by her family in the early 20th century. A great-niece discovers Wilkinson’s belongings in an attic and wants to know more. Monday, July 20
“POV: Return to Homs” (PBS, check local listings) Documentary about a 19-year-old man trying to survive in the besieged Syrian city of Homs. Monday, July 20
TUESDAY, JULY 21
“Humanity From Space” (PBS, check listings) A survey, from an orbiting perspective, of the many ways humans have left their mark on the planet and transformed it. Tuesday, July 21
“Knock Knock Live”(Fox at 9) Reality show hosted by Ryan Seacrest, who sends teams, which include some celebs and pro athletes, out across the country to knock on people’s doors and give them the opportunity to win cash in a series of inventive games and quizzes, “taking an ordinary day and making it unforgettable.” Tuesday, July 21
“The Agent” (Esquire at 10) Docuseries about the high-stakes world of being an NFL agent. Tuesday, July 21
WEDNESDAY, JULY 22
*”Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!” (Syfy at 9) The destructive annual weather event strikes Washington this time. Wednesday, July 22
“Home Free” (Fox at 9) Competition series from the producers of “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” features nine couples who have to renovate run-down homes. Wednesday, July 22
“Life on the Reef” (PBS, check listings) Three-week series explores the wonders and complexity of the Great Barrier Reef. Wednesday, July 22
“The Next Great Burger” (Esquire at 10) Same as the last great burger, don’t you think? Wednesday, July 22
SATURDAY, JULY 25
“Runaway Island” (TV One at 8) Movie about a group of vacationing strangers who share a common bond while visiting an island teeming with African-American history and culture. Stars Lorraine Toussaint, Thomas Q. Jones and Aisha Hinds. Saturday, July 25
SUNDAY, JULY 26
*”I Am Cait”(E! at 9) Phase 2 (or maybe Phase 3?) of the massive publicity campaign related to the transition of Caitlyn Jenner, formerly known as Bruce. Sunday, July 26
“Stewarts & Hamiltons”(E! at 10) Reality series nests in the branches of a complicated family tree that involves Alana Stewart, Rod Stewart and George Hamilton. Sunday, July 26
MONDAY, JULY 27
“POV: Tea Time”(PBS, check local listings) Documentary about the monthly tea parties of five well-heeled women in Chile who’ve witnessed quite a bit over the years. Monday, July 27
TUESDAY, JULY 28
*”The Bomb” (PBS, check listings) On the 70th anniversary of the dawn of the nuclear age, this documentary explores the most powerful and destructive weapon in human history. Includes new, declassified footage of test detonations and their aftermath. Tuesday, July 28
“Uranium: Twisting the Dragon’s Tail”(PBS, check listings) Hosted by Derek Muller, this documentary examines the secrets of one of the Earth’s most controversial elements. Tuesday, July 28
WEDNESDAY, JULY 29
“Nova: Nuclear Meltdown Disaster” (PBS) Special report on the brave workers who stayed behind as an earthquake and tsunami damaged the Fukushima power plant in Japan and caused one of the world’s worst nuclear incidents. Wednesday, July 29
FRIDAY, JULY 31
“Cold Justice: Sex Crimes”(TNT at 9) Spinoff of reality series in which two Texas prosecutors go to small towns and help local law enforcement solve long-dormant cases. (Premieres after the season return of the original “Cold Justice” at 8.) Friday, July 31
*”Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp”(Netflix streaming) Eight-episode comedy series based on the 2001 cult hit film features original cast members (Amy Poehler, Bradley Cooper, Paul Rudd, Janeane Garofolo, Ken Marino, Michael Ian Black) and adds some new cast, including Kristen Wiig, Chris Pine, Jason Schwartzman — and how about a side of Jon Hamm? Friday, July 31
SUNDAY, AUG. 2
“Close Up With the Hollywood Reporter”(Sundance TV at 11 a.m.) A new panel show that interviews actors and producers of the critically acclaimed TV shows and movies. Sunday, Aug. 2
“America’s Secret Swimming Holes” (Travel at 7) This sounds like a good way to agitate people who would prefer not to tell the world the location of their favorite swimming holes. Sunday, Aug. 2
MONDAY AUG. 3
“Significant Mother” (CW at 9:30) Sitcom about a Portland restaurateur (Josh Zuckerman) who discovers that his roommate is dating his mother (Krista Allen). Monday, Aug. 3
“Toe Tag Parole: To Live and Die On Yard” (HBO) Documentary about “life without possibility of parole” and some California inmates who are serving such sentences. In exchange for their commitment to contrition, an experimental program helps them find small freedoms within their confines of their permanent incarcerations. Monday, Aug. 3
“POV: Beats of the Antonov”(PBS, check local listings) Documentary about how music binds a community in the war-torn Sudan region. Monday, Aug. 3
TUESDAY, AUG. 4
“JFK & LBJ: A Time for Greatness” (PBS, check listings) Documentary provides a fresh take on the two presidents, vis a vis the Civil Rights Act and Voting Rights Act. Tuesday, Aug. 4
WEDNESDAY, AUG. 5
*”Difficult People”(Hulu streaming) Original comedy, executive produced by Amy Poehler, stars Billy Eichner and Julie Klausner as best friends living together in New York. Wednesday, Aug. 5
*”Mr. Robinson”(NBC at 9) Comedy stars Craig Robinson (“The Office”) as an underemployed musician who takes a job as a high school music teacher. Wednesday, Aug. 5
*”The Carmichael Show” (NBC at 9:30) Six-episode sitcom stars Jerrod Carmichael as a man who introduces his girlfriend (Amber West) to his zany parents (David Alan Grier and Loretta Devine). Wednesday, Aug. 5
“A Wicked Offer” (CW at 9) Reality show dangles cash prizes to people who are willing to play cruel pranks on friends, families and co-workers. Wednesday, Aug. 5
“Job or No Job” (ABC Family at 9) Reality series from the producers of “Undercover Boss” follows a young adult who is trying to land his or her first job. Wednesday, Aug. 5
THURSDAY, AUG. 6
*”The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” (Comedy Central at 11). The day his devoted fans have dreaded is here — Stewart’s final show. Thursday, Aug. 6
FRIDAY, AUG. 7
“The Comment Section” (E! at 10:30) Michael Kosta hosts this new comedy/pop-culture show (executive produced by “The Soup’s” Joel McHale), which rounds up the most outrageous social media comments on the week’s trending celebrity/entertainment news. Friday, Aug. 7
MONDAY, AUG. 10
“I Am Chris Farley” (Spike at 10) Documentary about the late comedian and SNL alum. Monday, Aug. 10
TUESDAY, AUG. 11
“Next Step Realty: NYC”(ABC Family at 9) Docuseries about a real-estate firm that specializes in helping recent college grads find their first apartments in the big city. Tuesday, Aug. 11
WEDNESDAY, AUG. 12
“Kevin From Work” (ABC Family at 8:30) Comedy about a young man who pours his heart into a mash note to a female colleague as he’s leaving for a new job overseas. When that job falls through and he returns to his old job, what will happen with his unrequited love? Wednesday, Aug. 12
SUNDAY, AUG. 16
*”Show Me a Hero” (HBO at 9) Six-episode miniseries from creator David Simon and director Paul Haggis, about a young mayor (Oscar Isaac) of Yonkers, New York, struggling to meet a federal court order mandating low-income housing in white neighborhoods. Sunday, Aug. 16
“Food to Get You Laid” (Logo at 8:30) Expert chef Ronnie Woo guides couples who want to take things to the next level in the kitchen. Sunday, Aug. 16
MONDAY, AUG. 17
“Monica the Medium” (ABC Family at 9) Reality series about a Penn State junior who says she communes with the dead. Monday, Aug. 17
“POV: Neuland”(PBS, check local listings) Documentary about a Swiss immersion class for recent immigrants. Monday, Aug. 17
TUESDAY, AUG. 18
“Startup U” (ABC Family at 8) Docuseries follows a group of millennials as they take a seven-week course from billionaire venture capitalist Tim Draper’s school in Silicon Valley. Where they no doubt learn how to become perfectly lovely and generous people. Tuesday, Aug. 18
“WAGS” (E! at 10) Reality series about the “Women and Girlfriends of Sports,” who do whatever it takes to support their professional athletes. Tuesday, Aug. 18
THURSDAY, AUG. 20
*”Documentary Now!” (IFC at 10) Fred Armisen and Bill Hader (with production help from Seth Meyers) star in this six-episode spoof of documentary films, including a send-up of “Grey Gardens.” Thursday, Aug. 20
FRIDAY, AUG. 21
“National Gallery” (PBS, check local listings) Two-night documentary takes viewers behind the scenes of the London institution. Friday, Aug. 21
SATURDAY, AUG. 22
*”The Unauthorized Full House Story” (Lifetime at 8) Recommended only for late-’80s/early-’90s nostalgia masochists, this movie is about what it was (maybe) like behind the scenes of the beloved sitcom. Supply your own “Have mercy!” joke. Saturday, Aug. 22
*”Blunt Talk” (Starz at 9) From Seth McFarlane (“Ted”), a half-hour comedy about exuberantly inept British newsman Walter Blunt (Patrick Stewart), who is hired by an American cable news channel for a new show (Piers Morgan, anyone?) and runs into immediate problems. Jacki Weaver (“Silver Linings Playbook”) co-stars. Saturday, Aug. 22
“Tig Notaro: Boyish Girl Interrupted” (HBO at 10) Stand-up special taped in Boston in May. Yes, it’s true, she did just have a special on Showtime. Why, yes indeed, she does have a special on Netflix, too. Somebody really likes her. Saturday, Aug. 22
TUESDAY, AUG. 25
*”Public Morals” (TNT at 10) This crime drama goes back in time to the 1960s to offer viewers a peek at what working in a dramatized NYPD Vice Division would have been like. Stars Edward Burns, Michael Rapaport and Elizabeth Masucci. Tuesday, Aug. 25
SUNDAY, AUG. 30
“MTV Video Music Awards”(MTV at 9) Always the potential for fresh horrors. Sunday, Aug. 30
MONDAY, AUG. 31
“Todrick” (MTV at 10) Reality series about Todrick Hall and his collaborators, who write, choreograph and produce full-scale productions, with or without Hollywood’s help. Monday, Aug. 31
“Big Blue Live” (PBS, check local listings) Live TV and multimedia event from Monterey Bay, Calif., examines and celebrates the return of blue whales. Monday, Aug. 31
“POV: Point and Shoot” (PBS, check local listings) Documentary follows a shy 26-year-old from Baltimore who left on a worldwide trip and wound up joining the Libyan revolution. Monday, Aug. 31
FRIDAY, SEPT. 4
*”American Masters: Althea” (PBS, check listings) Biography of Althea Gibson, who rose from poverty to prominence in the highly segregated world of pro tennis in the 1950s. Friday, Sept. 4
TUESDAY, SEPT. 8
*”Late Show With Stephen Colbert”(CBS at 11:35) From New York, Colbert’s debut in David Letterman’s vacated slot, with new bandleader Jonathan Batiste. Tuesday, Sept. 8
SUNDAY, SEPT. 13
“The 2016 Miss America Competition” (ABC at 9) Therrrre she is … From Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall, the 95th anniversary of the annual scholarship competition. Sunday, Sept. 13