Monday, July 2

Imprisoned … Joshua Bowman as Daniel Grayson in Revenge.Free to air
Nanjing Night Net

Revenge, Seven, 8.30pm

Yes, there’s a surfeit of close-ups of people glaring and open-eyed, Brutus-style hugs that scream of betrayal. But if there’s one thing this glossy soap has judged cleverly through its first season, it’s the snappy speed of its plotting. As the story of the relentless quest by Emily Thorne (Emily VanCamp) to avenge her father’s disgrace and death has played out, the producers have packed episodes with a never-ending procession of suspicious characters and enough red herrings to fill a cannery.

Tonight, events take a new turn for imprisoned Grayson heir Daniel (Joshua Bowman) and Grayson Global comes under threat following the latest moves by Victoria (Madeleine Stowe). Meanwhile, Emily chases a lead she discovers in a previously missing diary and a sinister man starts to emerge from the shadows – a killer with white hair and ice-blue eyes.

Last Man Standing, Ten, 8pm

In this strained sitcom, Tim Allen attempts unsuccessfully to recapture the magic of his hit comedy Home Improvement (1991-99). Instead of being DIY expert Tim ”The Tool Man” Taylor, he’s Mike Baxter, marketing director for a sporting goods store. Mike’s a man’s man with a supportive spouse and three daughters who bewilder him. So the show is basically a string of situations in which the bloke who loves beer, guns and cars is confounded by the opposite sex.

But instead of those misunderstandings having some sweetness and spark, as they can in New Girl, here they are dull and predictable. Mike stomps around growling like a disgruntled bear and the comedy is old-fashioned – not in a quaint and appealing way so much as a creaky and cliched one.

In this episode, Mike tries to enforce a curfew on his eldest daughter, 22-year-old single mother Kristin (Alexandra Krosney), while also insisting that there be no ”shenanigans” under his roof. The poor guy, awash in a veritable sea of oestrogen, just can’t get a decent break. Oh, diddums.

Fashion Star, Eleven, 8.30pm

This is the clothing-design contest that doesn’t have Heidi and Tim. Instead, it has Elle, Nicole, Jessica and John, as well as a trio of buyers from major chain stores in the US.

In a clever twist on the traditional fashion-design contest, the buyers arrive with their chequebooks and bid for the clothes they want to see in their stores. Combining the sometimes inconsequential assessments of mentor-judges Nicole Richie, Jessica Simpson and John Varvatos and the cold, hard cash that can be offered by the buyers, Fashion Star is a slick package but unfortunately it’s no Project Runway. Elle Macpherson anchors the action, a beautiful yet bland robo-host who looks great in the gowns but is otherwise stiff and constrained.

With 10 contestants remaining, the challenge here is to work in teams to design a living department store window. As Orly has problems with lace, Ross attempts a vest and Edmond makes an ill-advised move to menswear, all of the contestants are anxious not to hear those fateful words: ”I’m sorry, you’re not our fashion star.”

Body of Proof, Seven, 9.30pm

Dana Delany has been a doctor (Presidio Med), a desperate housewife, a federal agent (Castle) and, most memorably, a stoic nurse serving during the Vietnam War (China Beach). In this by-the-numbers crime series, she plays Megan Hunt, a brilliant neurosurgeon who works in the medical examiner’s office.

Megan is always the smartest person in the room, knows it and has no problem reminding everyone else. In terms of smugness, she would give The Mentalist’s Patrick Jane a run for his money, although she also has a killer collection of shoes and handbags.

This episode involves the investigation following the discovery of a body in the freezer of a popular Philadelphia restaurant. It reunites Delany with her China Beach co-star Robert Picardo- who plays the brother of the victim and a possible witness to the crime – who also appears to be suffering from dementia.

Debi EnkerMovies

The Three Stooges Go Around the World in a Daze (1963) 7Two, 2pm

How splendid of 7Two to take up the slack in quality movies while SBS goes hell for leather with the Tour de France. It’s a case of roll over Jules Verne and consult the doping committee when Phileas Fogg III, great-grandson of the original adventurer, accepts a wager from a descendant of Randolph Stuart to duplicate his ancestor’s amazing journey. Fogg (Jay Sheffield), for reasons far too arcane to detail here, is obliged to take three travelling companions – Moe, Larry and Curly Joe – in an effort to outwit Stuart, whose apparent sense of injustice over his relative’s defeat by great-grandpa Fogg still rankles. That’s the plot in a nutshell – a vessel far larger than necessary. But wait! There’s an ingenious twist to proceedings. Stuart is, in fact, a notorious conman, Vickers Cavendish, who has initiated the challenge as a smokescreen for robbing the Bank of England and framing Fogg III. Ohhh! Lordy wah! Stand by for a torrent of Oscars! Love interest is provided by the fragrant Amelia Carter (Joan Freeman), an heiress the quartet rescue from thugs on the way back to London. Genius! An intriguing footnote: Freeman was born in the town of Council Bluffs, Iowa, home of Gilbert Sheldon’s porcine superhero Wonder Wart-Hog, aka Philbert Desanex. She also appeared in Roustabout (with Elvis Presley) and The Reluctant Astronaut. Subeditor Phil Space advises the infamous ”eye-poke” routine is used here for the last time in a Stooges movie, given Joe DeRita’s concern children would emulate it and damage their eyes, initiating vigorous reactions from swarms of Hollywood lawyers.

Victoria in Dover (1954) SBS Two, 10.30pm

Romy and Magda Schneider star in this odd German confection, which concerns itself with the first years of Queen Victoria’s reign. The young princess, newly crowned, is pushed towards an arranged marriage by Lord Melbourne. Her family and Melbourne concur that Prince Albert is the ideal chap but Victoria disagrees and takes herself off on a short holiday to ponder her future. On the way to Paris, she pops into a hotel in Dover, incognito, for a couple of schooners and there meets a man who enchants her utterly. Amazing powers! It is later revealed that this dashing chap is none other than Albert – Bertie, the love of her life. Barbara Cartland couldn’t have written it better! On second thoughts …

Doug Anderson

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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