TV tonight: Can The Taste compete with NCIS?

Tonight NCIS and The Taste battle it out for viewers.

Photo: CBS/ABC

WASHINGTON, January 29, 2013 —Last week the premier of the competitive cooking show, The Taste, helped ABC win the night in the key 18-49 demographic, with over 6 million viewers. Normally that would be cause for celebration. But, The Taste’s primary competitor, NCIS, aired a repeat episode and still boasted higher overall numbers.

Scheduling a new show against one of the most successful TV programs in history makes one wonder what the net-heads were smoking when they made the decision to  run The Taste against NCIS. Why not air the show on Friday, or even Saturday night when the competition is less formidable? I’m pretty sure The Taste would win the night over the mediocre competition, AND give people a reason to actually watch prime time TV over the weekend in the process.

I watched the two-hour premier of The Taste last week and found it to be the most realistic “reality show” in years. The first episode was blissfully lacking in contrived drama between judges, or Oliver Twist like back stories carefully produced to bring a tear to the viewer’s eye. For this reason alone I am a fan, so put the pipe down you net-heads, and give The Taste a time slot that isn’t a death sentence from the start.

Elsewhere, for basic cable reality show junkies there are plenty of new episodes of your favorites airing tonight, with the newest addition, “Southie Rules,” premiering at 10 p.m. on A&E. I haven’t seen this show, but I’m imagining a dumbed down Good Will Hunting meets Jersey Shore. Lord help us all if this is even close to accurate.

Tonight’s viewing:

All times are EST:

8 p.m.

ABC: The Taste: (New) Part 2 conclusion: Auditions continue.

CBS: NCIS: (New) The NCIS team investigates a Marine’s car accident and ignites some upsetting past memories for Abby as a young girl on the trail of her first “case.”

FOX: Raising Hope: (New) The “Modern Family” camera crew is hired by Sabrina’s mom to film her marriage to Jimmy, but Maw Maw’s clash with the reverend could ruin the day. In the second half hour, Jimmy and Sabrina get a wedding present from Barney that entails an excursion to Los Angeles for a taping.

NBC: Betty White’s Off Their Rockers: (New) NeNe Leakes and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills join Betty and her pranking posse.

CW: Hart of Dixie:  (New) When Zoe (Rachel Bilson) is alerted by the Health Department about a flu epidemic heading towards BlueBell, she is forced to put the town on lockdown. Because of the quarantine, Wade (Wilson Bethel) is forced to stay at his ex-girlfriends house causing Zoe to become jealous.

PBS: Pioneers of Television: (New) Remembering the superhero TV shows of bygone eras, including “Superman” (1950s); “Batman” (1960s); “Wonder Woman” and “The Incredible Hulk” (1970s); and “The Greatest American Hero” (1980). Included: remarks from Adam West, Burt Ward and Julie Newmar.

8:30 p.m.

NBC: Betty White’s Off Their Rockers: (New) A drienne Maloof, Camille Grammer and Kyle Richards, all of “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills,” who join Betty for a photo shoot.

9 p.m.

ABC: Happy Endings: (New) Max vows revenge when the gang tricks him into thinking he won the lottery; Max’s plotting interferes with a proposal from Pete; Brad gets a new job.

CBS: NCIS: Los Angeles: (New) Callen goes undercover to infiltrate a network of Chechen terrorists who are recruiting foreign fighters to join their cause and planning their next attack in the U.S.

FOX: New Girl: (New) Nick and Schmidt are both attracted to the same beautiful woman during a guys’ night out. Elsewhere, Winston falls for a girl, but she doesn’t return his affections; and Jess’ evening involves a round of the drinking game True American and a new development in her relationship.

NBC: Go On: (New) When Ryan starts dating Simone, Janie’s ghost throws him off his game. Piper Perabo guest stars.

CW: Emily Owens, M.D.: (New) When the hospital is inundated with bus crash victims during a winter storm, Emily is assigned to run triage in the E.R. During the chaos, Emily is forced to do an emergency skull procedure on a heroic Marine who suddenly collapses. Tyra bristles at her father’s lack of respect for her as a doctor, but they later experiences a breakthrough when they perform an emergency c-section together.

PBS: Henry Ford: American Experience: (New) A profile of Henry Ford (1863-1947), the Ford Motor Company founder who’s Model T in 1908 changed the auto industry. He also instituted the assembly line (an idea borrowed from the meatpacking industry).

9:30 p.m.

ABC: Happy Endings: (New) When Penny learns that Pete wants to elope; Jane takes them to a wedding expo in hope of changing his mind; Dave and Alex deal with their unresolved issues.

FOX: The Mindy Project: (New) Mindy is unnerved by her dream guy’s relationship with his female best friend; Jillian breaks up with Danny, who enlists Morgan’s help to win her back.

NBC: The New Normal: (New) A breastfeeding debate turns Bryan into an activist, while Jane busts a move on Brice (guest star John Stamos).

10 p.m. 

ABC: Jimmy Kimmel Live: (Repeat) Mstt Damon hijacks the show and proceeds to oversee what may be one of the most star-studded episodes in talk show history.

CBS: Vegas: (New) Jack is in dire trouble when he’s blindsided by Mia’s father, Rizzo, who wants to grill him about his daughter. Meanwhile, Dixon saves a drowning girl and discovers she was poisoned, and Savino and his Savoy crew find themselves stranded in the desert overnight.

NBC: Dateline NBC: (New) When college student Mickey Shunick vanished last summer, her sister became the tip of the spear in a multinational search effort.

Basic cable:

New episodes of:

The Sisterhood at 8 p.m. on TLC

Dual Survival at 9 p.m. on DSC

Top Gear at 9 p.m. on History Channel

Doomsday Preppers at 9 p.m. on NGC

Face Off at 9 p.m. on Syfy

Sister Wives Confidential at 9 p.m. on TLC

Edge of America at 9 p.m. on Travel Channel

Storage Wars Texas at 9 and 9:30 p.m. on A&E

Wild Deep at 9 and 9:30 p.m. on Animal Planet

Southie Rules at 10 and 10:30 p.m. on A&E

Real Husbands of Hollywood at 10 p.m. on BET

The Millionaire Matchmaker at 10 p.m. on BRAVO

Africa at 10 p.m. on DSC

Chopped at 10 p.m. on Food Channel

Justified at 10 p.m. on FX

Diggers at 10 and 10:30 p.m. on NBG

Snooki and JWoww at 10 p.m. on MTV

Cougar Town at 10 p.m. on TBS

For movie lovers:

8 p.m.

Predator on AMC

The Fifth Element on ENC

All Night Long on FLIX

Date Night on FMC

Wrath of the Titans on HBO

Edward Scissorhands on IFC

Being John Malkovick on Sund

9 p.m.

The Debt on HBO

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo on STARZ

Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son on MOMAX

Later tonight:

Once Around at 9:30 p.m. on FLIX

Tower Heist at 10 p.m. on CINEMAX

Sudden Impact at 10:10 p.m. on ENC

Unknown at 10:30 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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