Machine Age



Mondays at 8:30 (Manhattan) or 10:30 (outer boroughs) on Time Warner Cable channel 35

I spent much of my teendom glued to Manhattan public access television—not just for channel J but also for shows like Videowave that were my only source for underground music spurned by MTV. Fearless Music picks up the tradition with this New York–based series, now launching its second season, that features local bands like the Rogers Sisters, Ambulance, and French Kicks.


Fridays at 10:30 on IFC

This is survival of the nerdiest, a quiz show in which cinemaniacs debate film trivia head-to-head, all in hopes of gaining the title “Ultimate Film Fanatic.” The questions tend toward the pedestrian and contestants are straight out of central casting, but if you spend most of your life in the front row at Film Forum, you’ll probably end up playing along.


Mondays at 9 on TNT

Although it’s nice to see Julianna Margulies back in action, she has entangled herself in a silly miniseries that exploits our current anxiety about terrorism. The Grid‘s American counterterrorism experts (which include Margulies and Dylan McDermott) are clueless and pious, while their shrewd British counterparts appear to have wandered in from some more highbrow Masterpiece Theater program.