There's some damn fine television this week, including new Christmas specials from Warehouse 13, Eureka and Robot Chicken. President Obama guest stars on Mythbusters. Jack Bristow fights a rogue icecap. Vin Diesel saves the baby Jesus. Plus Fringe and Smallville.
There's literally nothing on tonight — sorry! No Chuck, no The Event, and no Cartoon Network shows. It's a wasteland. Spend time with your families.
Syfy is having a marathon of Warehouse 13 and Eureka during the day until 3 PM, in preparation for the big holiday specials in the evening.
At 8 PM, there's the cable TV premiere of Babylon A.D., the much-maligned movie starring Vin Diesel and Michelle Yeoh, on FX. Is there some hidden greatness lurking beneath the tarnished surface of this post-apocalyptic "birth of Jesus" metaphor? Find out for yourself!
There's a new episode of No Ordinary Family, on ABC at 9 PM. When George gets credit for one of Jim's secret crimefighting activities, animosity breaks out between the two friends. Meanwhile, Daphne suspects something is wrong with Katie's new boyfriend, JJ discovers a problem with his powers, and Stephanie and Katie disagree over a personal matter.
Also at 9 PM, a new Tower Prep, "Field Trip":
Ian and a group of students are selected by Headmaster for a survival training drill in the forest surrounding the school, which is typically off limits. Initially excited about the prospects of finding out more about the area, Ian's joy is quickly crushed when he finds out his training partner is his rival Cal. Things go from bad to worse when they become lost in the woods that takes them off course and alerts The Gnomes to their presence bringing the boys face-to-face with a very worthy adversary.
And here are some sneak peeks:
At 9 PM, Syfy has the Eureka holiday special, "O Little Town," followed by the Warehouse 13 holiday special, "Secret Santa." Here are some synopses:
Eureka, "O Little Town": Carter's (Colin Ferguson) plans to visit family for the holidays are thwarted when he, Zoe (Jordan Hinson) and the rest of the town are trapped in Eureka by a glitchy electromagnetic shield – during a very un-Christmassy heat wave. Undaunted, Allison (Salli Richardson-Whitfield) mega-decorates and Vincent (Christopher Gauthier) serves up fruitcake while a mysterious Secret Santa distributes stunningly perfect gifts. Fargo (Neil Grayston) obsesses over plans for the Global Dynamics company party, getting only a "Bah humbug" from Jo (Erica Cerra). She has her hands full with the partying GD staff, including Dr. Noah Drummer (Chris Parnell) who nearly absconds with a volatile experiment.
Even a runaway sleigh careening down Main Street fails to ignite Carter's holiday spirit, especially since the low flying Santa turns out to be the eccentric Taggart (Matt Frewer), immersed in the study of "Santalogy" - science that he insists will prove the existence of the elusive Claus.
The halls get seriously decked when Dr. Drummer's experiment, an unstable hydrogen crystal, starts to grow at a frightening rate. Carter and Henry (Joe Morton) attempt to deal with the potentially explosive crystal, but before long the true scope of the problem is revealed, and it will take more than tinsel and carolers to save Christmas — and Eureka.
Warehouse 13, "Secret Santa": Pete and Myka hunt down a malevolent artifact-wielding Santa Claus and come to the aid of a businessman. Meanwhile, Artie reunited with his estranged father Isadore after 30 years.
And some sneak previews:
President Obama may not be able to bust the federal budget deficit, but at least he can take some time out to bust some myths. He makes a special appearance in this week's MythBusters at 9 PM on Discovery:
In this extra-special episode of MYTHBUSTERS, Adam and Jamie tackle a request from the highest ranking viewer of all: the President of the United States, Barack Obama. President Obama tells Adam and Jamie that he'd like them to re-test the myth of the Archimedes Solar Ray – this time with more manpower. The myth, which says that Greek scientist Archimedes set fire to an invading fleet using only mirrors and the sun, has been tested by MYTHBUSTERS twice before (and busted). After developing a unique mirror aiming system, Adam and Jamie use the President's STEM connections and enlist 500 student volunteers ready to light a fire for science! Meanwhile, Kari, Tory and Grant recreate a scene from a superhero movie: Is it really possible to punch the hood of a moving car with so much force that it then flips up into the air and somersaults? Using giant steel fists, huge cranes, intricate towing systems, laser timers and more SUVs than ever before, they test this full scale myth in a full on way.
At 10 PM, there's a new Psych on USA, "We'd Like To Thank The Academy."
At 8 PM, there's a new episode of The Vampire Diaries, on The CW, "By The Light of the Moon":
TYLER FACES HIS FIRST TRANSFORMATION - As the full moon approaches, Caroline (Candice Accola) helps Tyler (Michael Trevino) prepare for the transformation he is powerless to stop. While Stefan (Paul Wesley) and Katherine (Nina Dobrev) play mind games on one another, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) and Alaric (Matt Davis) are suspicious when a stranger named Jules (guest star Michaela McManus) shows up in Mystic Falls, searching for her missing friend, Mason. Elena (Dobrev) is frustrated at the lengths Jeremy (Steven R. McQueen) and her friends have gone to in order to keep her safe. Bonnie (Katerina Graham) and Luca (guest star Bryton James) work together on a spell, while still keeping secrets from one another. Finally, Elijah (guest star Daniel Gillies) makes an unexpected appearance with an offer that could change everything.
Also at 8, there's a new The Big Bang Theory on CBS.
And at 9 PM on The CW, Nikita gets captured by Division, after Alex is almost uncovered as her mole within the organization.
And at 9 PM on Fox, there's another new episode of Fringe, "Marionette." Can't wait to see the fallout from last week's insane episode? Us neither. Here's the description:
When the Fringe Team investigates a case where a victim had his heart extracted, it's just the beginning of a series of mysterious and reanimating events tied together. Meanwhile, Peter comes to terms with the reality of his relationship with Olivia.
Here are some looks ahead:
Also at 9 PM: a new Ancient Aliens on the History Channel.
A new Burn Notice is on USA at 10 PM.
Also at 10 PM, the History Channel has another Brad Meltzer's Decoded
There's no new Batman: The Brave and the Bold at 7:00 pm. But at 7:30 PM, Ben 10: Ultimate Alien has its one-hour season finale, consisting of two half-hour episodes smushed together.
There's a new Smallville, on The CW at 8 PM, "Icarus":
The VRA is in full effect and things take an unfortunate turn of events after the Green Arrow (Justin Hartley) tries to stop a mugging but is attacked by citizens for being a super hero. Clark (Tom Welling) discovers that the civilians who attacked Oliver were all marked with a darkness tattoo. Carter Hall (guest star Michael Shanks) and Star Girl (guest star Britt Irvin) return to help Clark deal with Slade's (guest star Michael Hogan) re-emergence after he kidnaps Lois (Erica Durance).
There's also a new Medium on CBS at 8 PM.
There's no new Sym-Bionic Titan due to the extra half hour of Ben 10, but there is a new Generator Rex at 8:30 PM. There's also no new Star Wars: The Clone Wars, sadly.
At 9 PM, there's a new Supernatural on The CW, "Appointment In Samarra":
Dean (Jensen Ackles) seeks out Death (guest star Julian Richings) to help get Sam's (Jared Padalecki) soul back. Death tells Dean he will help Sam if Dean will agree to act as Death for 24 hours. Meanwhile, Sam decides he doesn't want his soul back and asks Balthazar (guest star Sebastian Roché) for a protective spell to keep his soul out of his body. Balthazar tells Sam he needs the blood of his father for the spell to work and since John Winchester is dead, Sam decides Bobby (Jim Beaver) is the next best thing.
At 10 PM, there's a new Sanctuary on Syfy, "Vigilante."
Who's got your back on Saturday night? As usual, the answer is Syfy, with another totally adequate Syfy original movie. This one is called Ice Quake, and I don't think it's a reimagining of Ang Lee's classic movie The Ice Storm, based on the novel of the same name by Rick Moody. Maybe the plot synopsis will help clear up the confusion:
The melting Alaskan permafrost is about to drastically alter the tranquil Christmas scenery. As the permafrost thaws, underground rivers of volatile liquid methane are created, causing a succession of violent and destructive earthquakes. One family, separated by the disastrous events on Christmas Eve, must find each other (and their dog!) and then work together in the unforgiving Alaskan wilderness to stop the deadly methane rivers before they lead to a catastrophic explosion that threatens the entire planet.
And it stars Sydney Bristow's dad! Here's a sneak peek.
Apparently, there's another new Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes premiering on Disney XD at 10 AM. Either they really think this show is just for kids, or they're understimating the size of all our hangovers.
As usual, there's the Fox animation bloc from 8 to 10 PM, including The Simpsons and a full hour of Family Guy.
At 9 PM, there's the third season winter premiere of the gadget-happy, hacker-filled Leverage, "The Ho, Ho, Ho Job."
Can't wait for the Robot Chicken Star Wars Special next week? Well, luckily, this Sunday sees the Robot Chicken DP Christmas Special, at 11:30 PM on Adult Swim, just to keep you from molesting your own action figures. It's only 15 minutes long, but then there are reruns of some earlier Christmas specials afterwards.