The gang on "Lost" had to endure only a plane crash to land on a beautiful island filled with secrets. The folks on "Last Resort" (8 p.m., ABC, TV-14) have to start World War III -- or refuse to, as the case may be.
Andre Braugher stars as Capt. Marcus Chaplin of the USS Colorado, a nuclear submarine. In buddy cop movie fashion, he tells his next in command, Sam Kendal (Scott Speedman), that he's recommending him for a desk job near Washington, D.C., so he can start a family with his young sweetheart. We know that's not going to happen.
Reports of a messy impeachment battle arrive in snippets, telling us that generals and admirals are abandoning an embattled commander in chief. Without warning, and only
moments after picking up Navy SEALs in a training exercise, the Colorado is ordered to launch nuclear weapons at
Pakistan. When Chaplin questions the authenticity of the orders, all heck breaks loose.
Not to give too much away, but the Colorado becomes a rogue ship, bristling with
nuclear weapons and defying a government it no longer deems legitimate. The pilot leaves one wondering if Washington has gone crazy, or Chaplin. Or maybe both.
The scenes in the sub are suspenseful. Unfortunately, "Last Resort" moves toward "Scandal" territory whenever the action is in our nation's capital. Scenes of weapons developer-lobbyist types lurching from the boudoir to the Pentagon don't pass the laugh test.
additional episodes to flesh out.
It's clever, if a bit much, to combine elements of "Lost" with such Cold War thrillers as "On the Beach" and "Seven Days in May," but I definitely want to see where this deeply paranoid thriller is headed.
---So many detective series are based on Sherlock Holmes, that whenever somebody adapts Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's character for television, it's like they're borrowing from "Columbo," "Monk," "Psych" or "The Mentalist."
"Elementary" (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14) sets Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) in modern-day Manhattan, where he's come after escaping from a drug rehab facility in the U.K. His unseen father has hired Dr. Joan Watson (Lucy Liu) to look after him. Fortunately for us, he resumes his sleuthing while she tries to humanize him.
He's impetuous, rude
and insightful. She's slightly wounded but able to reach the people whom Holmes offends. And he offends everybody.
"Elementary" really pushes Holmes into anti-social terri-
tory. Viewers looking for the next Gregory House may have found him.
Fascinating, cruel and creepy, this new variation on the famous detective pushes the Holmes-Watson relationship to uncomfortable and fascinating extremes. Sometimes it resembles that of Hannibal Lecter and Clarice Starling.
---Raj feels left out on "The Big Bang Theory" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG).
---Walden plans a surprise party on "Two and a Half Men" (8:30 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---Reese needs help finding Finch on "Person of Interest" (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---The aftermath of the crash affects everyone's future on "Grey's Anatomy" (9 p.m., ABC, TV-14).
---The truth about Quinn may be too much to handle on "Scandal" (10 p.m., ABC, TV-14).
---"Saturday Night Live Weekend Update Thursday" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
---Hilary Duff helps judge baby clothes on "Project Runway" (9 p.m., Lifetime, TV-PG).
---Leslie steps on toes while trying to tackle obesity on "Parks and Recreation" (9:30 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
---The holidays prove particularly difficult on the season finale of "Louie" (10 p.m., FX, TV-MA).
Sean Connery and F. Murray Abraham star in the 1986 mystery "The Name of the Rose" (8 p.m., Sundance), set in a medieval abbey.
---Auditions continue on "The X Factor" (8 p.m., Fox, TV-14).
---Jeremy's fateful decision on "The Vampire Diaries" (8 p.m., CW, r, TV-14).
---Reagan becomes a stay-at-home mom on "Up All Night" (8:30 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
---Pam and Jim take stock on "The Office" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
---Kurt gets a break on "Glee" (9 p.m., Fox, TV-14).
---Semifinals on "The Next" (9 p.m., CW).
---Amar'e Stoudemire is
scheduled on "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" (11 p.m., Comedy Central).
---Jake Gyllenhaal, Karen Gillan and the Chevin appear on "Conan" (11 p.m., TBS).
---Kristin Chenoweth, Brody
Stevens, Sarah Colonna and Brad Wollack are booked on "Chelsea Lately" (11 p.m., E!).
---Vince Gilligan sits down on "The Colbert Report" (11:30 p.m., Comedy Central).
---Regis Philbin and Lupe Fiasco appear on "Late Show With David Letterman" (11:35 p.m., CBS).
---Jay Leno welcomes Liam Neeson, Lisa Lampanelli and the Gaslight Anthem on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC).
---Selena Gomez, Lenny Venito and Tony Bennett appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (midnight, ABC).
---Sofia Vergara, Damian Lewis and Jeff Mauro visit "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (12:35 a.m., NBC).
Kevin McDonough can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.