Can you smell that in the air? No, it's not Leela Thai's dumpster, it's the backlash to the backlash to the end of Pushing Daisies. In the coming month, we'll start seeing articles arguing that Pushing Daisies wasn't all that good to begin with and that if high-minded critics were in charge of TV programming, no one would ever make money. We understand that it's a commercial art form, but the realization of Bryan Fuller's vision and a combination of intriguing actors and intelligent writing are unique and deserve consideration. Enjoy it while it lasts.
Pushing Daisies [8 PM, ABC] - Ned (Lee Pace) and Olive (Kristin Chenoweth) go head-to-head in a comfort food competition, but Pie-ron Chef becomes Pie & Order when a chef is found dead. For Bryan Fuller completists out there, Beth Grant reprises her role as Marianne Marie Beetle, muffin maker and trailer park resident from Wonderfalls. For those of you in denial that the Pie Maker has met his maker, this petition might help you move on.
Spectacle: Elvis Costello With... [9 PM, Sundance] - Elvis Costello's new chat show kick starts its 13-week run tonight with guest (and co-producer) Sir Elton John. Each show will begin with a song by Costello and proceed into a free-form discussion with the guest and the audience, broken up by occasional musical interludes. Look forward to future episodes with Lou Reed, Bill Clinton, Rosanne Cash, She & Him and Jenny Lewis. We've long ago made peace with Elvis Costello's progressive selling out, and we're glad that the wish he expressed while guest-hosting the Late Show in 2003 has finally come true.
Christmas in Rockefeller Center 2008 [8 PM, NBC] - Holiday/blue humor junkie Al Roker and 30 Rock's Jane Krakowski host the lighting of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. Harry Connick Jr., Jonas Brothers, Stephen Colbert and Rosie O'Donnell are scheduled to appear. We're glad they wait six days after the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade to trot out more stilted writing and Christmas schmaltz.
Stylista [9 PM, CW] - We've stuck with this vision of loveliness all season and we want to see this to the end. Tonight, the contestants prep a hotel room for supermodel Maggie Rizer and, as usual, design a fashion layout. As a result of watching this show, the phrases "on trend" and "Satan’s little hand foot maiden" are permanent additions to our lexicon. Take that, meh!
Secret Millionaire [8 PM, Fox] - In this series debut, rich people go undercover as poor people, ingratiate themselves to the financially-deficient, and then reveal that they are actually rich and give at least $100,000 to the needy. As we have noted before, any show, movie or book that could be over immediately by just giving someone a check smacks of a systemic lack of creativity. In the show's press materials, Fox mentions that Secret Millionaire "will engage viewers in important social issues, extol the virtues of volunteerism and change the lives of disadvantaged people..." We laugh at the first suggestion, doubt the second and hope for the third.
Victoria's Secret Fashion Show [10 PM, CBS] - Triple threat Usher serenades Heidi Klum, Miranda Kerr, Karolina Kurkova and other impossibly thin yet busty Victoria's Secret models as they walk the runway wearing breast- and angel-related contraptions. As we mentioned earlier, December is a month for networks to dump one-off specials that are immediately forgotten.