TV Best Bets

Friday, June 19: ‘Sherman’s Showcase’ Star-Studded Black History Month Spectacular

Michael Moriatis/IFC

All Times Eastern.

Friday, June 19

Sherman’s Showcase: “Black History Month Spectacular”
AMC, 10pm & IFC, 11pm
Fictional legendary variety show host Sherman McDaniels (co-creator Bashir Salahuddin) presents the Sherman’s Showcase one-hour “Black History Month Spectacular.” The witty, irreverent and wholly original special honors historic African-American icons both past and present, alongside superheroes, period dramas, vampires and a very special re-imagining of the cult film The Last Dragon. Special guest stars in the spectacular include rapper Phonte Coleman, Michael Ealy, Jemele Hill, Lil Rel Howery, Terrence J, John Legend, Vic Mensa, Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Bresha Webb, Tom Sandoval, Tom Schwartz, Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter, Tyrin Turner, Mario Van Peebles and more.

Father Soldier Son

This intimate documentary from The New York Times follows one military family over the course of 10 years in an intergenerational exploration of the meaning of sacrifice, purpose and American manhood in the aftermath of war.

Ovation, 12pm

In today’s double blast from British TV past, sexy, stressed-out forensic pathologist Iain McCallum (John Hannah) begins Season 2, from 1997-98, clearing a colleague and investigating organ harvesting.

Juneteenth: A Celebration of Overcoming
ABC & National Geographic, 8pm

This ABC News primetime special commemorates Juneteenth, the holiday celebrating the end of slavery in America, and examines its symbolism among the black community and around the nation. Led by a team of ABC News anchors and correspondents, including ABC News Live Prime anchor Linsey Davis, Nightline coanchor Byron Pitts, correspondents Deborah Roberts, TJ Holmes, Steve Osunsami and Janai Norman, and The View moderator Whoopi Goldberg, the one-hour special presents intimate stories examining the legacy of the holiday through the current lens of political and social unrest that has captured global attention. The special will feature stories of black-owned businesses and the #BuyBlack movement to support them, the fight for voting rights and protecting them in 2020, the struggle to pass congressional anti-lynching legislation, the power of black spirituality and the church and other houses of faith, and how a legacy of suffering has often been transformed into joy through the lens of artists.

Directed by Nicholas Ray
TCM, beginning at 8pm
Catch a Classic!

Influential film director Nicholas Ray is celebrated tonight with three of his most memorable films. First up is his most famous work, Rebel Without a Cause (1955), the classic drama about troubled suburban teens starring James Dean, Natalie Wood and Sal Mineo. Ray also developed the story for this film, which earned him his only Oscar nomination. The night continues with Ray’s first feature, the film noir They Live by Night (1949), and with another noir, In a Lonely Place (1950), which stars Humphrey Bogart and Gloria Grahame.

Winner Cake All: “A Candy-Coated Wedding”
Cooking Channel, 9pm

Giada De Laurentiis welcomes four teams of cake-makers and challenges them to make an over-the-top, candy-themed cake decoration. One team is sent home, and the remaining three meet their VIP clients, the founders of gourmet candy company Sugarfina. With impressive feats of design and engineering, the teams wow their clients, but only one can win $10,000 and the honor of presenting their cake on the couple’s big day.

Dino Hunters
Discovery Channel, 9pm
New Series!
Ranchers in Wyoming, Montana and the Dakotas have found a new way to bolster their profits — hunting for dinosaur fossils. The more complete the skeleton, the bigger the payday, all the way up to millions of dollars.

Great Performances: “Ann”
PBS, 9pm

Enjoy a powerful and revealing look at legendary, larger-than-life Texas governor Ann Richards, who enriched the lives of her followers, friends and family, in this critically acclaimed play written by and starring Emmy Award winner Holland Taylor.

Saturday, June 20

Dad Food Weekend
Food Network, 8am
Prep for your Father’s Day feast. Today’s six-hour marathon includes new episodes of The Kitchen — chef Jeff Mauro cooks with his dad — and Barefoot Contessa: Cook Like a Pro. Sunday’s batch has a new patty-melts-and-disco-fries installment of Valerie’s Home Cooking.

FXM, 11:20am
Catch a Classic!

Raquel Welch plays the title role — Fathom Harvill, a skydiver turned secret agent — in this cult-classic 1967 British spy comedy that cashed in on a newly popular film genre ushered in by the James Bond movies of the era. Lorenzo Semple Jr., who wrote for the Batman TV show in the ’60s, brings similar camp to these proceedings. The film looks gorgeous, colorfully shot by acclaimed cinematographer Douglas Slocombe, although, if we’re being fair, Welch would look fantastic even if she were shot by a high school AV student using an old Betamax camera.

Ford v Ferrari
HBO, 8pm
Based on a true story, this Best Picture nominee released last year stars Matt Damon as American racecar designer Carroll Shelby and Christian Bale as British driver Ken Miles. In the 1960s, Shelby is hired by the Ford Motor Company to design a car that will beat the indomitable Ferrari at the Le Mans race in France. Is Shelby’s GT40 up to the task? Can Shelby convince Ford that Miles is the right driver? And will this high-octane challenge change auto racing history? (Affirmative on that last one at least.)

Love Under the Olive Tree
Hallmark Channel, 9pm
Original Film!

Nicole (Tori Anderson) has plans to expand her family’s Northern California olive oil business until childhood crush Jake Brandini (Benjamin Hollingsworth), heir apparent to the neighboring ranch and her biggest competitor, discovers the land Nicole wants to build on may belong to his family. When a local judge decides to resolve the dispute by awarding the land to the winner of the upcoming olive oil competition, the flames are further fanned, but Nicole and Jake begin to find common ground as the big competition looms.

Sunday, June 21

NASCAR Cup Series: Geico 500
FOX, 3pm Live

Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Martin Truex Jr., Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin, Chase Elliott and other top NASCAR Cup Series stars are in Alabama for the Geico 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.

Hollywood Game Night: “Bill Nye the Game Night Guy”
NBC, 7pm

Bill Nye, Bobby Moynihan, Amber Riley, Fortune Feimster, Miranda Cosgrove and Adam Pally compete in hilarious party games. Host Jane Lynch introduces a new game, Move N’ Groove, as two contestants vie for a $25,000 grand prize.

John Legend and Family: A Bigger Love Father’s Day
ABC, 8pm

John Legend, father of two and EGOT winner, invites us to a celebration of dads with a one-hour variety special that will be a tribute to fathers everywhere and blend live musical performances with some much-needed levity and touching moments, and plenty of surprises. John will perform material from his highly anticipated new album, and some of John’s celebrity friends — and fellow dads — will join him for a hilarious “Fatherly Feud” game.

The Top Ten Revealed: “MORE Hits That Were Covers”
AXS TV, 8pm

It’s the return of a countdown that looks back at the most notable cover songs that became hits.

United We Sing: A Grammy Tribute to the Unsung Heroes
CBS, 8pm

Singer and actor Harry Connick Jr. hosts this two-hour special event celebrating essential workers across America. Connick and his filmmaker daughter, Georgia Connick, take a road trip in an RV to thank and celebrate essential workers who risk their own lives on a daily basis to keep us safe. Sandra Bullock, Drew Brees, Queen Latifah, Brad Pitt, Oprah Winfrey and Renée Zellweger will deliver surprise messages to America’s unsung heroes. Musical performances include Connick, Jon Batiste, Andra Day, John Fogerty, Jamie Foxx, Herbie Hancock, Cyndi Lauper, Little Big Town, Branford Marsalis, Wynton Marsalis, Dave Matthews, Tim McGraw, Rockin’ Dopsie, Irma Thomas and Trombone Shorty.

Lucy Worsley’s Royal Myths & Secrets
PBS, 8pm
New Miniseries!

The first episode of this three-part miniseries looks at Elizabeth I and her role in the defeat of the Spanish Armada by the English navy in a pivotal battle that kickstarted the formation of Great Britain.

Cleopatra: Sex, Lies and Secrets
Science Channel, 8pm

Cleopatra was the last queen of Egypt, an icon of popular culture and one of the most elusive yet significant female figures in history. But who was the woman behind the image? In this two-hour special, experts seek out the latest groundbreaking archaeological research to unravel the mystery of Cleopatra.

Showtime, 8pm
Season Finale!

Season 7 of the documentary series comes to a close.

Happy Father’s Day
TCM, beginning at 8pm
Catch a Classic!

Grab Dad and sit down to enjoy a couple of film classics about fathers today. The evening begins with 1947’s Life With Father, the Oscar-nominated comedy starring Best Actor nominee William Powell in the true story of a stockbroker who changes his life for his family. Irene Dunne and Elizabeth Taylor costar. Up next is Vincente Minnelli’s 1950 Oscar-nominated comedy classic Father of the Bride, in which Best Actor nominee Spencer Tracy plays a harried dad getting ready for his daughter’s (Elizabeth Taylor) wedding day.

From Daryl’s House: “Fitz and the Tantrums”
AXS TV, 9pm

Indie pop stars Fitz and the Tantrums are Daryl Hall’s guests in this episode.

The 2020 ESPYS
ESPN, 9pm

Inspired by the extraordinary acts of heroism and humanitarian aid happening around the world, The 2020 ESPYS will shift its customary focus from outstanding athletic achievement in order to further highlight narratives of service, perseverance and courage from within the world of sports. The Arthur Ashe Award for Courage, the Pat Tillman Award for Service and the Jimmy V Award for Perseverance will be presented, and the show will also present the Sports Humanitarian Awards.

Worst Cooks in America
Food Network, 9pm
Season Premiere!

Iron Chef Alex Guarnaschelli joins Anne Burrell to lead a culinary boot camp designed to whip a cast of disastrous cooks into shape. Alex and Anne each lead a team of kitchen-challenged competitors through an intense competition designed to improve their food skills. In the end, the one contestant who demonstrates the most impressive culinary transformation is awarded $25,000 and bragging rights for their mentor.

Good Witch: “The Chocolates”
Hallmark Channel, 9pm

A chocolate festival takes over Cassie’s (Catherine Bell) cozy bed-and-breakfast. Mysterious newcomer Joy (Katherine Barrell) whips up some truth-inspiring treats to get the best of her former business partner.

Perry Mason
HBO, 9pm
New Series!

Matthew Rhys (The Americans) stars as the title character in this origin story behind how the famous fictional attorney came to be the courtroom crusader for justice readers and viewers know through Erle Stanley Gardner’s novels and Raymond Burr’s classic TV portrayal. The series is set in early 1930s L.A., when Mason is a somewhat sketchy private investigator until a shocking case starts him on a path toward redemption. This case also offers backstories for memorable Mason characters Della Street (Juliet Rylance) and Paul Drake (Chris Chalk). John Lithgow and Tatiana Maslany costar.

World War II: Race to Victory: “Victory at Any Cost”
History, 9pm

This episode explores the tensions at the heart of the Allied war effort, as the dominant powers weigh up the moral ambiguity and actions of their alliance. In November 1943, the Big Three are meeting for the first time, in Tehran. The three leaders seem to be in full support of one another, but they also have their own interests at heart. So how will they work together at this historic conference?

Paramount Network, 9pm
Season Premiere!

Kevin Costner returns as rancher John Dutton in Season 3 of Paramount Network’s drama. Dutton’s ranch is in constant conflict with an expanding town, an Indian reservation and vicious business rivalries. A new foe is introduced in Season 3: Josh Holloway (Lost) plays Roarke Morris, a hedge fund manager with ambitious plans in Montana concerning the Dutton family. Returning stars include Luke Grimes, Kelly Reilly, Wes Bentley and Cole Hauser.

PBS, 9pm

A deadly hit-and-run in Grantchester leads Will and Geordie to a dysfunctional pair of brothers and a hidden garden, while their own home lives are tested by tricky family members.

The Chi
Showtime, 9pm
Season Premiere!

Season 3 gets an early start, due to scheduling adjustments in light of the coronavirus pandemic. Fans should expect plenty of plot twists and new cast members this season.

Snowpiercer: “Trouble Comes Sideways”
TNT, 9pm

Hiding out with help from his allies, Layton (Daveed Diggs) lays track for revolution. Meanwhile, an engineering emergency threatens every soul on Snowpiercer, and Melanie (Jennifer Connelly) is the only one who can save them.

Collector’s Call: “Meet Brian Smolik — Pac-Man”
MeTV, 9:30pm

Brian Smolik is all about Pac-Man. As a fan of the game since the ’80s, Brian began collecting anything and everything with the Pac-Man design, and these days his basement is packed to the gills with Pac-Man paraphernalia, including a Pac-Man bike and Pac-Man sleds. Tim Lapetino, a video game historian, will appraise Brian’s collection — and then try his best to get Brian to trade one of his prized items for Pac-Man collectible that he probably won’t see again.

AMC & BBC America, 10pm
Season Premiere!

The supernatural thriller from author Joe Hill (son of Stephen King) continues with Season 2, picking up eight years after the explosive events of the Season 1 finale. Charlie Manx (Zachary Quinto), having faced his own mortality and the potential destruction of Christmasland, is once again hungry for children’s souls and revenge against Vic McQueen (Ashleigh Cummings). This time, he sets his sights on the person who means most to Vic — her 8-year-old son, Wayne (Jason David).

Live Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted: “Louisiana”
Nat Geo, 10pm

Chef Ramsay journeys to Louisiana to learn the secrets of Cajun cooking. He meets Eric Cook — a former Marine turned celebrated chef — who sends him off to get lost in the marsh and see what he brings back. Ramsay faces down dangerous and delicious creatures from deep in the swamps to the middle of the Gulf of Mexico.

Beecham House
PBS, 10pm

John Beecham’s family, including his mother and an old army pal, are reunited at Beecham House. When the mysterious Chandrika arrives, the household is thrown into chaos. Will the family be able to stay together?