TV tonight: 'Super Bowl's Greatest Commercials'

7:41 AM, Jan 31, 2013   |    comments
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Super Bowl's Greatest Commercials 2013 | CBS, 8 ET/PT

Whoever invented the "Super Bowl Commercial" as a separate advertising entity deserves some sort of Madison Avenue Legion of Honor medal. We are, after all, talking about commercials: those TV interruptions people profess to hate and do their fast-forward best to avoid. Yet, once a year, we not only watch them, we've been primed to anticipate and celebrate them - through vehicles like this special, which is not only an ad for CBS' coverage of the game, but an ad for the ads. Pair it with the debut of The Americans (10 ET/PT), FX's midseason best new series about Soviet spies fighting a losing war in the '80s, and you have a perfect book-end celebration of capitalism triumphant.

Law & Order: SVU | NBC, 9 ET/PT

Most shows get their share of good guest stars, but because it's filmed in New York, SVU (like The Good Wife) often gets to pull from a more interesting pool. Tonight, for example, the visiting defense attorney is played by My Big Fat Greek Wedding star Nia Vardalos, whose TV appearances of late have been few and far between. She's up against ADA Barba, played by Raul Esparza - a Broadway actor probably more familiar to New York audiences than to the nation at large. Or many of the TV honchos in Los Angeles.

NOVA | PBS, 9 ET/PT, times may vary

Here's another reason to cherish PBS. TV adores true crime stories, the more grisly, salacious and (most important) current the better. But trust NOVA to spend its time, and an honest use of new investigative techniques, on an old story that was once considered (and still could be) The Crime of The Century: the kidnapping and murder of the Lindbergh Baby. For those who've never heard of the case, it was the inspiration for Murder on the Orient Express - in case that helps.

(Copyright © 2013 USA TODAY)

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