Keep Reading. Subscribe Today.

Stay connected with our community and support nationally-acclaimed local news coverage. Sign up for a subscription today. Cancel anytime.

  • Already a subscriber?

Discovery, Science both offer 'Space Launch Live'

Posted 5/27/20

By Kevin McDonough

Nothing says TV event quite like a countdown and blastoff.

"Space Launch Live: America Returns to Space" (2 p.m., Discovery, Science, TV-PG) will capture the launch of the mission to send veteran astronauts Bob Behnken and …

This item is available in full to subscribers

Discovery, Science both offer 'Space Launch Live'

Posted

By Kevin McDonough

Nothing says TV event quite like a countdown and blastoff.

"Space Launch Live: America Returns to Space" (2 p.m., Discovery, Science, TV-PG) will capture the launch of the mission to send veteran astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the International Space Station on a SpaceX Crew Dragon spacecraft. The launch will feature the Falcon 9 rocket and is the first manned space mission launched from the United States in nine years.

To commemorate the event, Discovery and Science will interview Elon Musk, the mercurial founder and chief engineer of SpaceX. Look for insight from "Mythbusters" star Adam Savage, former NASA engineer and YouTube sensation Mark Rober and others, as well as entertainment from Katy Perry.

This launch, mingling private companies and NASA, and blending journalistic coverage with music, razzle-dazzle and cheesecake, represents a brave new world of space exploration and its coverage.

Films as early as Stanley Kubrick's 1968 gem "2001: A Space Odyssey" envisioned a place for company brands in outer space. And now that has come true. But not even HAL could have computed Katy Perry's place in the cosmos.

• Later on, in prime time, Discovery turns from space to its old habit of blending science and mythic malarkey as "Mysteries of the Deep" (10 p.m., TV-PG) host Jeremy Wade explores stories about the Bermuda Triangle.

• F. Scott Fitzgerald once wrote that "There are no second acts in American lives." But Ulysses S. Grant, the subject of the three-part "Grant" (9 p.m., History, TV-14) concluding tonight, certainly had several.

All but washed out of the Army, he would return to lead the Union forces to victory over the Confederacy. Tonight's segment covers his life from Appomattox to his ascension to the White House. While many historians dismissed him as corrupt, or at best naive around grafters and grifters, recent histories have emphasized his leadership during the difficult Reconstruction era, when many used violence to reduce recently freed slaves to unpaid serfdom and resist efforts to enfranchise and educate black citizens in the South.

Grant's final act was to write his masterful "Personal Memoirs" in his final months as he lay dying of cancer. The book has emerged as the greatest presidential autobiography and arguably the most admired military memoir since Julius Caesar's "Conquests." Not bad for a second, third or even fourth act.

• Coulson and the gang find themselves transported to New York in the year 1931 on the seventh and final season premiere of "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." (10 p.m., ABC, TV-14).

• Jazz musicians struggle in a stylized vision of Los Angeles in the 2016 musical fantasy "La La Land" (9 p.m., HBO Signature), directed by Damien Chazelle, whose series "The Eddy," set in a Parisian jazz club, now streams on Netflix.

• Phyllis (Cate Blanchett) becomes a force at the 1980 Republican Convention on the latest episode of "Mrs. America," streaming on Hulu.

TONIGHT'S OTHER HIGHLIGHTS

• A school bus crash fills the wards on "Chicago Med" (8 p.m., NBC, r, TV-14).

• Chris Hemsworth stars in the 2013 comic book adaptation "Thor: The Dark World" (8 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).

• Two accidents seem frighteningly familiar on "Chicago Fire" (9 p.m., NBC, r, TV-14).

"NOVA" (9 p.m., PBS, r, TV-PG, check local listings) documents efforts to salvage a B-24 bomber from its watery grave.

• Murdered boys rattle Halstead on "Chicago P.D." (10 p.m., NBC, r, TV-14).

• Nandor's former familiar visits Staten Island on "What We Do in the Shadows" (10 p.m., FX, TV-MA).

CULT CHOICE

A dead police officer (Peter Weller) is reanimated as a cyborg crime-fighter in director Paul Verhoeven's 1987 cautionary tale "Robocop" (9 p.m., Starz Encore).

SERIES NOTES

Celebrities compete on "Game On!" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG) * New contestants on "MasterChef" (8 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14) * Hope's past looms on "The 100" (8 p.m., CW, TV-14) * ISIS fingerprints on "SEAL Team" (9 p.m., CBS, r, TV-14) * "Ultimate Tag" (9 p.m., Fox, TV-PG) * Protection for Pike on "Bulletproof" (9 p.m., CW, r, TV-14) * Hondo's dad suffers on "S.W.A.T." (10 p.m., CBS, r, TV-14).

LATE NIGHT

Julia Louis-Dreyfus appears on "Conan" (11 p.m., TBS, r) * Anderson Cooper and Mark Foster are booked on "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert" (11:35 p.m., CBS, r) * Jimmy Fallon glances back at clips of Bruce Springsteen, Jamie Foxx and Will Ferrell on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC, r) * Ice T, Paul Schrader, Day Drinking with Ina Garten and Tucker Rule visit "Late Night With Seth Meyers" (12:35 a.m., NBC, r) * Helen Hunt, Ron Funches and Dave East appear on "The Late Late Show With James Corden" (12:35 a.m., CBS, r).

© 2020, United Feature Syndicate