Best shows on TV this week

  • By Chuck Barney Contra Costa Times
  • Friday, February 7, 2014 2:24pm
  • LifeGo-See-Do

Tonight

“Spies of Mississippi” is the latest documentary from “Independent Lens.” It tells the story of the Mississippi Sovereignty Commission, a secret intelligence agency created by the state government in the 1950s to repel desegregation, using a network of both black and white informants to infiltrate civil rights groups. 10:30 p.m., KCTS.

Tuesday

For one special episode, “Pretty Little Liars” is plunged into the world of a 1940s black-and-white noir film, complete with period costumes. Why? Because a frazzled, pill-popping Spencer (Troian Bellisario) loses touch with her own reality and wakes up in a new / old one. 8 p.m., ABC Family.

Let’s hear it for the mutts! For the first time ever, the storied “Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show” is allowing mixed-breed canines to compete in a new agility event, which is fine with us because we like rooting for the underdog. 8 p.m., USA.

Wednesday

More contestants are forced to face the music on “American Idol” as the Hollywood rounds continue. On Thursday, we’ll find out who the semifinalists are. 8 p.m., Fox.

Thursday

Forget the hoity-toity wine choices. Tonight, the contestants on “The Taste” are challenged to create dishes that pair well with a nice, frosty glass of beer. 8 p.m., ABC.

Painful memories of dodgeball are dredged up on “King of the Nerds.” But no worries: Tonight’s showdown features teams composed solely of robots. 10 p.m., TBS.

Friday

Are you getting tired yet of staring at the cheery mug of Bob Costas? The Winter Olympics continue as one of the games’ high profile sports — men’s figure skating — looks to crown a champion. 8 p.m., NBC.

Saturday

The new pirate drama, “Black Sails,” continues to shiver our timbers with an episode that brings disaster to members of the Walrus crew.

That’s fine, but when does Jack Sparrow show up? 9 p.m., Starz.

More in Life

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This recipe features a sauce made with olive oil, tomatoes and herbs instead of cheese and cream.

UFO at Paine Field playground was left by an artist — not aliens

The flying saucer at community park in Everett is a cosmic attraction.

Chef James Abbott makes Buck’s peanut butter pie at Buck’s American Cafe in Everett. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
New Edmonds bakery showcases owner’s mastery of pastry

Desserts are the highlight at Ganache Patisserie and Cafe on Main Street near the theater.

Marysville theater stages Noel Coward’s timeless ‘Blithe Spirit’

The cast and crew at the Red Curtain Arts Center do a fine job with the 1940s British play.

Stringed instruments get workout at Cascade Symphony concert

Tchaikovsky’s “Serenade for Strings” is the orchestra’s first concert of the season.

‘Breathe’ ignores all the inspirational movie cliches

It tells the story of a polio patient and his wife who helped change attitudes about the disabled.

Confusing, muddled thriller confounds talented director, cast

“The Snowman,” based on a Scandinavian crime novel, suffers from catastrophic storytelling problems.

Animating Van Gogh paintings proves to be trippy yet flawed

“Loving Vincent” relates the circumstances of the great painter’s death.

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