Fox programmers could use a reality check

Only you can save "Wonderfalls" (8 p.m., Fox). This quirky, talky series about a 20-something beset by spiritual advice from knick-knacks and other inanimate objects may not be perfect, but it's still a smart and ambitious series. And it's getting killed in the ratings. And that's sad, because it's worlds better than the horrible "reality" programming on Fox.

Did it ever occur to the geniuses at Fox that one of the reasons that "American Idol" rules the ratings is that it's a G-rated, generally upbeat talent contest that families can watch together? Other Fox reality shows, like "Forever Eden," "The Littlest Groom" and "Playing it Straight," are sleazy, stupid and depressing showcases aimed specifically at drunken 22-year-olds. And their ratings are deservedly horrible.

Memo to Fox programmers: Maybe nobody's watching "Wonderfalls" because they're so turned off by its idiotic lead-in series, "Playing It Straight." Air "Wonderfalls" after one of your many "American Idol" helpings and see if people stick around.

  • When did Mo Rocca take over the world? The snarky "Daily Show" veteran is joined by a band of professionally smug commentators for "Best Week Ever" (10 p.m., VH1) a half-hour roundup of the past seven days, done in the style of "I Love the '80s." It's content-free irony, predigested for those too lazy to think, or even laugh, for themselves.

Tonight's other highlights

  • The NCAA Basketball Tournament (6 p.m., CBS) continues. A second game follows at 8 p.m., time approximate.
  • More choices and deceptions on "Playing It Straight" (7 p.m., Fox).
  • Michelle Branch performs on the "Michelle Branch Custom Concert" (8 p.m., Oxygen).
  • A winner is chosen on "America's Next Top Model" (8 p.m., r, UPN).
  • Goren pursues a modern-day Bonnie and Clyde team on "Law & Order Criminal Intent" (9 p.m., NBC).
  • A celebrity murder investigation becomes a political minefield on "The D.A." (9 p.m., ABC).

Late night

Jay Leno welcomes Ashton Kutcher on "The Tonight Show" (10:35 p.m., NBC) ... Julia Stiles and Jessica Simpson appear on "Late Show with David Letterman" (11:35 p.m., CBS).

Donald Trump chats on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien" (11:35 p.m., NBC) Harry Connick Jr. and director John Waters appear on "The Late, Late Show with Craig Kilborn" (12:37 p.m., CBS).


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