This week: Soldier sex changes, Whoopi Goldberg, and the final days of election coverage (barring Supreme Court intervention).
What to title a documentary following the transformation of Captain Ian Hamilton, “a 16-stone paratrooper with 14-inch biceps, into Jan Hamilton, an 11-stone, size-12 woman”? BBC America knows: Sex Change Soldier, of course. (3, 8, and 11 p.m.)
On Showtime, it's the Season 3 premiere of the sexiest show ever set in Rhode Island, Brotherhood. (8 p.m.)
On Monday, Saturday Night Live throws a two-hour SNL Presidential Bash, cramming in as many parting shots at Sarah Palin as possible, plus some retrospectives of presidential impersonations from the show’s 33-year history. (9 p.m.)
Or forget politics and watch folks who are completely unaffected by economic turmoil make impossible demands of travel agent Sara Duffy on the series premiere of Bravo’s First Class All the Way. (9 p.m.)
Tuesday brings back that long-lost tradition of channel flipping. Starting at around 8 p.m., frantically toggle between networks to see which anchor is bold enough to call Pennsylvania first. Or just stick with Indecision 2008: America’s Choice on Comedy Central, where Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert will co-anchor the live patri-ironic extravaganza for the first time ever. (10 p.m.)
Wednesday, NBC airs the 19th (!!) season premiere of Law & Order, still helmed by the unstoppable Sam Waterston, who turns 68 this month. Ripped from the zeitgeist this week? The fatal beating of a stockbroker. Dun-dun! (10 p.m.)
For the five fans who care, Good Charlotte’s Joel Madden guest-stars as himself on Dirty Sexy Money. (10 p.m.)
Thursday night continues its comeback. On ABC, Grey’s Anatomy sticks to its winning formula of soft-core sex all the time (9 p.m.), followed by the underrated Life on Mars, which struggles to compete with a Whoopi Goldberg cameo as a DJ named Brother Lovebutter. She’ll cavort with series regulars Harvey Keitel (clothed!), The Sopranos’ Michael Imperioli (best mustache currently on television), and The Cosby Show’s Lisa Bonet.
And because you can only drink so much Grape Vitamin Water, get your 50 Cent-fill via the premiere of his new Apprentice-like MTV reality show, 50 Cent: The Money and the Power, and see how he compares to The Donald and Le Diddy. (10 p.m.)
Friday, kindly allow CMT to blow your mind with CMT Crossroads: Def Leppard and Taylor Swift. Def Leppard formed in 1977; country star Swift was born in 1989. Bask in the intergenerational warmth as they rock ‘n’ twang together. (9 p.m.)
Friday is also the third season premiere of the Discovery Channel’s Survivorman: One man, alone in the wilderness for seven days, will make you feel better about staying in on a Friday night. (9 p.m.)
Saturday, pass judgment on the third episode of CNN’s crossover into comedy (snarky comment redacted) on D.L. Hughley Breaks the News, a show generating headlines ranging from “D.L. Hughley’s CNN Show Off to Promising Start” to “ People Upset by D.L. Hughley Breaks the News.” (10 p.m.)