What’s new on the tube tonight:
Dig (USA) Series Debut: At least the USA Network is trying new ideas. But, for every creative win (like comedies Sirens and Playing House, or dramas Graceland and Satisfaction), there’s a pandering pantload (like reality steamers Chrisley Knows Best and Summer Camp), and a handful of lingering legacies that refuse to die (Royal Pains, still a thing!). Ten-episode conspiracy-thriller series Dig is presented as a Major Television Event, but it really could have been wrapped under two hours in a Nicolas Cage flick: An FBI agent (Jason Isaacs—you know, Malfoy) investigating the death of an American in Jerusalem uncovers a nefarious 2,000-year-old plot of Da Vinci Code proportions. It all looks great and seems important, but Dig fades in the stretch, as you’d expect from the creatives behind Heroes and Homeland, two series that couldn’t sustain their mythologies. Upside: Anne Heche as an FBI boss who transforms from Serious to Sexy by simply removing her glasses—now that’s writing!
American Crime (ABC) Series Debut: Joining The Slap on Eat Your Vegetables Thursdays is another well-cast-but-terribly-titled-and-muddled drama, American Crime, which follows the toll taken on those affected by a racially-motivated crime and trial. Because if TV audiences are clamoring for anything, it's to be lectured on race and class politics every week.