It's About Time
Now that Real Time with Bill Maher has a longer season and less crosstalk (fewer guests), it's possible that Friday night viewers might start watching it more often, especially considering that his Palin jokes are much worse (and funnier) than anything on network TV. Just a reminder, if you get HBO, there's no reason to worry tonight about the digital conversion. However, you should be worried that you are home watching TV on a Friday night.
Real Time with Bill Maher [10 PM, HBO]
People love, hate or don't really remember who Bill Maher is, but his commitment to putting his views into his comedy is brave (or pompous, but that's his stage character). This week, Larry King, P.J. O'Rourke, Chris Matthews and others join Bill to discuss the burning questions of the week. Maher has a really great rapport with King, and it wouldn't surprise us if he takes over that show in 2050 when Larry King finally kicks it.
The Goode Family [8:30 PM, ABC]
If you haven't caught this Mike Judge show yet, now might be a good time. With the green movement just becoming mainstream, a show satirizing its liberal frontrunners is (unfortunately) too early. This week, Helen (Nancy Carell) hurts her back and might not be able to get her garden together in time for the organic garden tour. I had to look this up, but King of the Hill was on for 13 seasons, and after watching the more specific and less funny Goode Family, I miss the simplicity of that program. Yeah, suburban Texans were an easy target, sure, but propane sales were never and will never be funnier.
40 Hottest Hotties of the 90's [7:30 PM, VH1]
For two hours, VH1 takes you back through the Clinton years when breasts got bigger, lips plumper and eyebrows piercier. But it's not just Pamela Anderson and Jennifer Aniston rocking the list. Men are also covered in the two-hour special, though we don't think the VH1 producers felt the same way we did about George Stephanopoulos. There's something about short Greek men with a security clearance and something to prove. OK, there's only one of those, but he was prime Grade-A Stifatho back then.
Hannah and Her Sisters [8:15 PM, TCM]
Three actresses (Mia Farrow, Dianne Wiest, Barbara Hershey) complain and cry and make life decisions in various ways and deal with all kinds of annoying men (most annoying: a very needy, effective Michael Caine) in a tale of family angst. This also might have been the last time that Woody Allen acting in one of his films was the right casting choice for the general audience and the critics. Personally, I'd like to see him front and center in every film because it's too sad to watch anyone else sweat his technique.