TV tonight: The premiere of ‘Da Vinci’s Demons’ on STARZ

The young Leonardo Da Vinci tonight at 10 p.m. on STARZ

Photo: STARZ/Da Vinci's Demons

WASHINGTON, April 12, 2013 — The ambitious new series “Da Vinci’s Demons” is the brainchild of David Goyer, best known for co-writing the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy. For those who may have pictured Da Vinci as a sedate creator of masterpieces, the show is a bit of a stretch.

What we get instead is a young Leonardo who is part action hero, part engineer and inventor, and part Sherlock Holmes, with a healthy dose of heterosexual lust thrown in for good measure. The character is portrayed as a person too complex to pin down, which makes the first episode an almost schizophrenic romp in too many directions at once.

Just as the viewer manages to get their head around medieval hang gliding, a mechanical bird invented by Da Vinci soars above with a grace that makes one wonder how Leonardo mastered such a feat, especially without a remote control.

“Da Vinci’s Demons” certainly has its ridiculous moments, but that doesn’t mean it is without merit. The show manages to convey Da Vinci as a likable scamp with a natural charm and wit that keeps him a step ahead of his enemies. The costumes are well done, and the scenery is the visual feast we have come to expect from period pieces on pay cable.

The first episode alone lays down enough story lines to keep the series busy for several seasons. This should bring the audience back for the second episode, but the frenetic pace has to slow enough to develop some cohesiveness if “Da Vinci’s Demons” wants to hold its audience.

Leonardo Da Vinci was one of the greatest minds in history, so the show definitely has possibilities. Whether or not the show’s producers capitalize on this is yet to be revealed.

Tonight’s viewing:

All times are EDT:

8 p.m.

ABC: Happy Endings: (New) The competition gets out of hand when Brad and Jane host a couples game night; Dave and Alex consult a psychic.

CBS: Undercover Boss: (New) Tony Wells, Chief Marketing and Customer Officer for The ADT Corporation, a leading provider of home security, struggles to sell their services to a recently robbed neighborhood bar. Also, he deals with a life-or-death situation when answering an emergency call at the alarm monitoring center.

FOX: Kitchen Nightmares: (Repeat) Chef Ramsay visits La Galleria 33, an Italian restaurant run by two sisters in Boston’s North End, to help the owners improve their bland menu, reverse a dire financial situation and mend their broken relationships with their staff and customers.

NBC: Fashion Star: (New) The buyers work one-on-one with the contestants - escalating their expectations for the runway!

CW: Nikita: (New) Alex confesses her desire to leave Division to Birkhoff, while Amanda begins providing Owen with something he was never able to find - memories of his real past. Despite Nikita’s attempts to help, Owen begins to confront the events of his past.

8:30 p.m.

ABC: Happy Endings: (New) Penny writes a play as a way to deal with her breakup with Pete and wants Derrick and his theater group to stage it; Alex and Max get an offer from a marketing group.

9 p.m.

ABC: Shark Tank: (Repeat) Animator Seth MacFarlane shows his support for a man who designed a new fly trap; multi-functional child cover; food storage container; follow-up on a manicure system.

CBS: Vegas: (New) DA Reynolds sweats the idea of a wiretap on Savino’s phones, but Ralph, Jack and Katherine expect to use it to their advantage. Later, Dixon and Yvonne visit Violet in Hollywood, where Yvonne gets the chance to show off her singing voice at a star-studded gathering. 

NBC: Grimm: (Repeat) A volcano threatens to bury Portland in lava; Adalind gains a new ally; and Juliette needs help dealing with multiple memories of Nick.

CW: The Carrie Diaries: (Repeat) In the first-season finale, Carrie’s plans for the junior prom get altered when secrets come out. Meanwhile, Dorrit wants her romance with Miller to progress to the next level; Mouse dates someone her parents disapprove of; and Carrie and Walt receive a tempting offer from Larissa.

10 p.m.

ABC: 20/20: (New) Internet scam artist; a man who claims an IRS agent offered to fix his tax problems in return for sex; people who fake injuries to collect disability payments; rich kids reveal their lives through Instagram; squatters; creative tax deductions.

CBS: Blue Bloods: (New) When two Wall Street brokers are killed in drug deals, Danny looks to question a wounded accomplice at the hospital but he is stopped by Linda, who won’t let Danny see him until after surgery. But when the accomplice dies during the procedure, Danny and Linda battle over the judgment call.

NBC: Rock Center with Brian Williams: (New) On Assignment: Gabby Reece on tackling motherhood, marriage and fitness.

Basic cable:

New episodes of: 

Swamp’d at 8 and 8:30 p.m. on Animal Planet

Mammoth: Back From the Dead at 8 p.m. on NGC

WWE SmackDown at 8 p.m. on Syfy

Four Weddings: Unveiled at 8 p.m. on TLC

Yukon Men: Revealed at 8 p.m. on DSC

Yukon Men at 9 p.m. on DSC

Flea Market Flip at 9 p.m. on HGTV

Tanked at 9 p.m. on Animal Planet

Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta at 9 and 9:30 p.m. on TLC

House Hunters at 10 p.m. on HGTV

Out There at 10 p.m. on IFC

Something Borrowed, Something New at 10 p.m. on TLC

The Dead Files at 10 p.m. on Travel Channel

Da Vinci’s Demons at 10 p.m. on STARZ

For movie lovers;

8 p.m.

High Crimes on AMC

Finding Nemo on ENC

Wet Hot American Summer on FLIX

Planet of the Apes on FMC

Adaptation on SUND

So Proudly We Hail! On TCM

The Samaritan on TMC

9 p.m.

Little Fockers on USA

Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married Too on TBS

Spartacus: War of the Damned on STARZ

Gulliver’s Travels 3D on FX

Later tonight:

Before I self Destruct at 9:35 p.m. on TMC

Cocktail at 9:40 p.m. on FLIX

Freaky Friday at 9:45 p.m. on ENC

Secretary at 10 p.m. on SUND

American Wedding at 10:15 p.m. on HBO


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Lisa King

I was born and educated in Southwest Virginia, traveled with my job all over America in my twenties and early thirties then came back to the mountains to raise my daughter.

I’ve been employed as everything from a quality control technician in industrial construction, to a mail processing plant manager, to postmaster of a small town. I’ve been to forty nine of the fifty states, as well as many other countries. Traveling will always be a passion I indulge, and something I’ll call upon often in my writing. 

I come from a long line of story tellers, and will shamelessly exploit a family tree resplendent with colorful and unique characters, both past and present.

In short my perspective will reflect the pride and familiarity I have of my Appalachian heritage. My stories will be a reflection of the values I believe we hold dearest here, all embellished with a healthy dose of Southern Appalachian flare.

 

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