Welcome back to Tune In: our weekly newsletter, offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV.
Each week, Variety’s TV team combs through the week’s TV schedule, selecting our picks of what to watch and when/how to watch it. This week, Jimmy Kimmel hosts the Academy Awards.
“Bates Motel,” A&E, Monday, 10 p.m.
“Bates Motel”: How much longer can Norman keep Mother’s death a secret? It’s the final season of A&E’s hit drama, and the stakes couldn’t be higher — especially with Rihanna set to guest star as Marion Crane, the ill-fated visitor to “Bates Motel.” It’s not going to end well — her visit, we mean. We have far higher hopes for the series finale.
“Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise,” PBS, Tuesday, 8 p.m. (CRITICS PICK)
What this lively, two-hour American Masters documentary does best is give a sense of the wide sweep of Angelou’s immensely varied and fascinating life. Even those who know her biography and literary works well are likely to gain new insights from watching collaborators, colleagues, friends and family members speak about the flowering of her gifts in many different social and artistic arenas. Towering over the documentary’s lively array of contributors is Angelou herself. She died in 2014, but directors Bob Hercules and Rita Coburn Whack use well-chosen excerpts from a number of archival interviews. Given that Angelou is a terrific storyteller, with great timing and an uncanny ability to describe a resonant detail, those segments are often the best parts of the film.
“Nashville,” CMT, Thursday, 9 p.m.
After last week’s emotional episode left Rayna’s (Connie Britton) life on the line, this Thursday’s hour will reveal whether or not she’ll make it out alive. Rumors have been swirling about Britton’s exit since CMT rescued the country music series from ABC, though the actress has denied buzz of her departure in various interviews.
“Ultimate Beastmaster,” Netflix, Friday
Leave it to Netflix to go global. The streaming giant will introduce what’s being credited as the “first international competition show of its kind” with 10 episodes of “Ultimate Beastmaster,” which will feature six different country-specific versions with local languages, competitors and hosts from each country, including the U.S., Brazil, South Korea, Mexico, Germany and Japan. Plus, Sylvester Stallone is an executive producer.
The Oscars, ABC, Sunday, 7 p.m. ET, 4 p.m. PT
Jimmy Kimmel takes on the most daunting gig of his career: the Academy Awards. The late-night host — who’s a favorite among the celebrity audience, which will be studded with nominees like Emma Stone, Ryan Gosling, Denzel Washington, Meryl Streep, Casey Affleck, Natalie Portman and more — earned positive reviews at the Emmys, but will he do the same on Hollywood’s biggest night?