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Picks and Pans Main: TV

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The Good Guys

FOX, May 19, 8 p.m. ET/PT |


West Wing politico Bradley Whitford reinvents himself for this entertaining free-for-all, a loose blend of buddy comedy and police action that’s also an affectionate nod to series like Starsky & Hutch (Guys is even shot with the yellowed ugliness of ’70s cop shows). Lumpy and mustachioed-he seems to be hiding behind Mr. Potato Head-Whitford is Dan Stark, a boozy cop who years ago made a heroic rescue that resulted in a made-for-TV movie. He’s teamed with Colin Hanks, a detective who’s as primly bloodless as a Pilgrim. In the premiere-the show begins a regular run in June-an investigation into a stolen humidifier uncovers a drug ring gone bloodily loco. One crook, eager to escape with the loot, orders a plastic surgeon to remake him like Erik Estrada. This is a show with a CHiPs on its shoulder.

Secret Life of Elephants

Animal Planet, May 16, 8 p.m. ET/PT |


The title sounds scandalous, as if we were going to meet a pachyderm Jesse James. But elephants are a wonderful species, and this two-hour special allows us to be their companions in Kenya’s Samburu National Reserve. The largest mammals on land, they’re extremely sensitive-one of the few animals that seem to share with people an acknowledgement of death. In another oddly human moment, a baby is sedated so its injured leg can be examined. When it comes to, it mistakes a car for Mama. All I could think of was the viral video of that loopy kid who’d been under anesthesia at the dentist.