Thursday, May 12 (NBC)
Season Finales: If Part 2 of Community’s paintball-Western finale is even half as brilliant as May 5’s Part 1, it should prove to NBC and the show’s several thousand viewers that the network made the right—creatively, if not financially or logically—decision to renew it. Outsourced, on the other hand, is as good as dead and should soon join $#*! My Dad Says and The Paul Reiser Show on the Must Forget Thursday trash fire.
The Vampire Diaries, Nikita
Thursday, May 12 (The CW)
Season Finales: The second-season Vampire Diaries at least deserves props for being less stoopid than Twilight and more coherent than True Blood … and, done. Nikita wraps a pretty solid Season 1 as the most adult show on The CW and, as a result, a 50-50 shot for renewal. C’mon, TV needs a good spy series—Chuck ain’t holding up his end anymore.
Thursday, May 12 (CBS)
Season Finale: Meh. Don’t be surprised if CSI, CSI: Miami and CSI: NY all end up as Friday filler next season. If they end up anywhere, that is.
CSI: NY, Blue Bloods
Friday, May 13 (CBS)
Season Finales: See above; subtract Blue Bloods.
Friday, May 13 (The CW)
Series Finale: After 10 years and two networks (remember The WB?), Clark Kent (Tom Welling) turns, like, 38 and finally dons the Superman cape. After Neil Patrick Harris, it’s TV’s second-longest coming-out saga.
Survivor: Redemption Island
Sunday, May 15 (CBS)
Season Finale: Just give it to Boston Rob, already. And cast “special agent” Phillip on Two & a Half Men.
Sunday, May 15 (ABC)
Season Finale: Not only is Desperate Housewives still on, it’ll be back for an eighth(!) season this fall—with Susan Lucci (All My Canceled Children) joining the cast! Thus begins the show’s transition from MILFs to GILFs to GGILFs.
The Cleveland Show
Sunday, May 15 (Fox)
Season Finale: Not my favorite of the Seth MacFarlane oeuvre, but the Comic-Con-centered Season 2 finale of The Cleveland Show does have an impressive guest-voice cast: Emily Deschanel (Bones), Eliza Dushku (Dollhouse), Danny Trejo (Machete) and Katee Sackhoff (Battlestar Galactica) … but it’s still The Cleveland Show.
Monday, May 16 (ABC)
Season Finale: Anyone else noticed Detective Beckett’s (Stana Katic) gradual aesthetic evolution from all-business polyester cop to stripper with a badge? Just me? Anyway, in the Season 4 finale, Beckett and Castle (Nathan Fillion) finally track down her mother’s killer. Or work a bachelor party—either way, I’m there.
How I Met Your Mother, Hawaii Five-0
Monday, May 16 (CBS)
Season Finales: Getting an ID on HIMYM’s “Mother” is about as likely as getting a Hawaii Five-O episode on Maui. Ain’t gonna happen … but, dare to dream.
Mad Love, Mike & Molly
Monday, May 16 (CBS)
Season Finales: It’s unlikely CBS will cancel both of these crapfests … but, dare to dream.
Monday, May 16 (NBC)
Season Finale: So May 9’s action-packed penultimate episode pulled Chuck out of an unfocused, months-long nosedive—is that any reason to believe the season (and potential series) finale is going to put it all back on track? Wouldn’t bet a Subway punch card on it.
90210, Gossip Girl
Monday, May 16 (The CW)
Season Finales: Really, really going to try to feign interest here. OK, that went really, really well.
NCIS, NCIS: Los Angeles
Tuesday, May 17 (CBS)
Season Finales: Too bad two of the most-watched shows on TV aren’t driving up the numbers of …
The Good Wife
Tuesday, May 17 (CBS)
Season Finale: One of the best dramas on network television, with some of the strongest, most realistic female characters in the entire medium. Naturally, The Good Wife is teetering on the brink of cancellation—maybe CBS should re-title it NCIS: Julianna Margulies.
Raising Hope, Traffic Light
Tuesday, May 17 (Fox)
Season Finales: Fox has already renewed Raising Hope—aka My Name Isn’t Earl—for a second season; midseason newcomer Traffic Light probably won’t be so lucky. Damn. [Update: Fox has canceled Traffic Light]
One Tree Hill, Hellcats
Tuesday, May 17 (The CW)
Season Finales: So, One Tree Hill is still on. In other news: While cheerleader dramedy Hellcats has gone off the rails in the latter half of Season 1, it’s still worth saving—if only to stick it to those Glee twits. Do the right(ish) thing, CW.
Wednesday, May 18 (CBS)
Season Finale: J.J. Jareau (un-fired co-star A.J. Cook) returns permanently to the Behavior Analysis Unit, which may or may not render her new blond ringer (recently hired replacement Rachel Nichols) redundant. Hotch (Thomas Gibson) is sure to ponder this grimly.
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Wednesday, May 18 (NBC)
Season Finale: Benson (Mariska Hargitay) and Stabler (Christopher Meloni) are caught in the middle of a shootout in the precinct! And they just moved into the new place, too.
Wednesday, May 18 (Fox)
Season Finale: Christian Slater belongs in comedy. Don’t make him go back to drama. [Update: Fox has canceled Breaking In]
America’s Next Top Model
Wednesday, May 18 (The CW)
Season Finale: I haven’t called an ANTM winner early for years (my Cycle 16 pick, Monique, was booted weeks ago); between Hannah, Brittani and Molly, I’d say Brittani, but it’ll probably be Hannah … I mean, I don’t follow this. [Update: Hannah has been eliminated. I mean, whatever ...]