Last week, NBC pulled an episode of "Hannibal" (10 p.m., NBC, TV-14) and replaced it with another. The network said it was reacting to the Boston Marathon bombings and subsequent events. In published reports, the show's executive producer, Bryan Fuller, explained the pre-empted episode had nothing to do with the attack, but the scheduling change was meant to be "sensitive to where we are as a nation."
Was that decision wise or merely absurd? Don't get me wrong; I'm not picking on "Hannibal," a well-made series I consider superior to the grim, graphic depravity of the 1999 novel and its 2001 movie adaptation. But when, exactly, is the right time to air a show about a sadistic, cannibalistic serial killer?
If we all really wanted to be "sensitive" to the nation's feelings, would CBS air half its morbid forensics dramas, including "Criminal Minds" and "CSI"? Would Fox promote the literary sadism of "The Following"?
And those are just a handful of network shows. Is there ever a "right" or a "wrong" time to enjoy "Dexter"?
I find it troubling when entertainment executives offer spasmodic genuflections to national vulner-
abilities one day a year and then go on broadcasting hyperviolent fare for the following 364.
---Fox has renewed "Glee" (9 p.m., Fox, TV-14), the high school musical melodrama, for two more seasons. Whether "Glee" will continue to divide its narrative between the hijinks at McKinley High and the travails of its big city graduates or narrow itself down to one storyline
remains to be seen.
As the numbers-crunching folks at the TV by the Numbers website have explained, "Glee" was always a cinch for
renewal. Its ratings have faded since the show's first season but remain higher than average for the network.
Many "Glee" detractors hoped it would be canceled, either because they thought the show had run out of creative gas or because they never liked it in the first place. "Glee" and musical thea-
ter-based entertainment in general attract a lot of "love to hate it" fans, folks who exult in a guilty pleasure and watch just to cringe and groan. Speaking of "love it or hate it," look for "Sex and the City" star Sarah Jessica Parker on tonight's epi-
---A science-fiction re-enactment on "Community" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
---A poisoned target faces a ticking clock on "Person of Interest" (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---Andy pursues show business on "The Office" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
---Bailey faces scrutiny on "Grey's Anatomy" (9 p.m., ABC, TV-14).
---A winner emerges on the season finale of "Project Runway" (9 p.m., Lifetime, TV-PG), featuring guest judge Michael Kors.
---Charlie's patients become romantically involved on "Anger Management" (9:30 p.m., FX, TV-14).
---Ron's budget-cutting irks Leslie on "Parks and Recreation" (9:30 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
---A murdered blackmailer's helper may hold vital clues on "Elementary" (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---Huck's past is revealed on "Scandal" (10 p.m., ABC, TV-14).
---Gwyneth Paltrow, Lee Mack, Mo Farah and Hurts appear on "The Graham Norton Show" (10 p.m., BBC America, TV-14).
A true story of a grueling cross-country horse race inspired the 1975 Western "Bite the Bullet" (10:30 p.m., TCM), starring Gene Hackman, Candice Bergen, James Coburn, Ben Johnson, Jan-Michael Vincent and Dabney Coleman.
---Sheldon overreacts on "The Big Bang Theory" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG).
---Klaus flashes back to old New Orleans on "The Vampire Diaries" (8 p.m., CW, TV-14).
---Lyndsey gives Alan the heave-ho on "Two and a Half Men" (8:30 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
---Gabe comes clean on "Beauty and the Beast" (9 p.m., CW, TV-14).
---Joe Manchin is scheduled on "The Daily Show With Jon Stewart" (11 p.m., Comedy Central).
---Nicole Polizzi and Jenni Farley appear on "Conan" (11 p.m., TBS, r).
---Topher Grace and Loni Love are booked on "Chel sea Lately" (11 p.m., E!).
---Gene Robinson is on "The Colbert Report" (11:30 p.m., Comedy Central).
---Dwayne Johnson and Snoop Lion appear on "Late Show With David Letter man" (11:35 p.m., CBS).
---Jay Leno welcomes Gwyneth Paltrow and Billy Ray Cyrus on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC).
---Kaley Cuoco, Goran Visnjic and Olly Murs appear on "Jimmy Kimmel Live" (11:35 p.m., ABC).
---Susan Sarandon, Anthony Mackie and the National visit "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" (12:35 a.m., NBC).
---Craig Ferguson hosts Zac Efron and Anna Quindlen on "The Late Late Show" (12:35 a.m., CBS).
Kevin McDonough can be reached at kevin.tvguy@g mail.com.