Five years and ten seasons in, ABC’s “Dancing With the Stars” Monday night hopes to regain some mojo this spring after a less-than-enthralling fall.
This meant reducing the cast to 11 and mixing celebs who will draw guys (Pamela Anderson, Nicole Scherzinger from the Pussycat Dolls) and gals (Jake Pavelka from the “Bachelor,” Aiden Turner from “All My Children”). And it never hurts to throw in some divisive figures, too, such as Kate Gosselin and Shannen Doherty.
And Edie Falco continues to make her problematic nurse character likable despite her cheating, pill-popping ways on Showtime’s “Nurse Jackie,” back Monday night for a second season:
“Dancing With the Stars” 8 p.m. ABC (10th-season debut) — The cast of 11 ranges from classy (astronaut Buzz Aldrin) to trashy (Kate Gosselin of “Jon & Kate” fame).
“The Secret Life of the American Teenager” 8 p.m. ABC Family (second-season finale) — John celebrates his first birthday.
“24” 9 p.m. Fox — With CTU down, Jack chases after those pesky plutonium rods his way.
“Damages” 10 p.m. FX — Ellen’s family life goes haywire and Frobisher starts his movie.
“Nurse Jackie” 10 p.m. Showtime (second-season debut) — The pill-popping nurse tries to stop cheating on her sweet husband but that won’t be easy.
“The United States of Tara” 10:30 p.m. Showtime (second-season debut) — Meds have kept the alter egos at bay – but not forever.
“American Idol” 8 p.m. Fox — The theme is Billboard No. 1’s, which is so broad as to be almost meaningless, though it’s certain nobody will do “Chariots of Fire.”
“Lost” 9 p.m. ABC — Back story is on Richard, the ageless acolyte of the now-dead Jacob.
“16 and Pregnant” 10 p.m. MTV — For better or worse, teens are fascinated seeing other teens pregnant.
“Justified” 10 p.m. FX — Last week was the biggest FX debut since “The Shield.” Raylan chases down an escaped felon who has just three months left on his sentence.
“Parenthood” 10 p.m. NBC — Hoping the writers can give Lauren Graham a bit more of that “Gilmore Girl” mojo.
“Southland” 10 p.m. TNT — Cooper and Sherman visit Dewey at a halfway house.
“America’s Next Top Model” 8 p.m. the CW — The two local gals are outspoken. Last week, Alasia from Marietta clashed with Ren. This week, Anslee of Dacula goes toe to toe with Brenda.
“Survivor” 8 p.m. CBS — The NCAA tournament forces this reality classic back a day early and it’s a double elimination. Can Russell, immunity idol in hand, fend off powerful Boston Rob?
“American Idol” 9 p.m. Fox — Whoever leaves tonight will likely miss the “Idols Live” tour, which in the past has taken only the top 10.
“Fly Girls” 9 p.m. the CW (new series) — Following the lives of five Virgin America flight attendants. Don’t dare call them “stewardesses.” That’s so 1975.
“Mythbusters” 9 p.m. Discovery (eighth-season debut) — A lethal littering myth is tested.
“Cougar Town” 9:30 p.m. ABC — Sheryl Crow guest stars as a wine rep pursuing Grayson.
“FlashForward” 8 p.m. ABC — Zoey attempts to change Demetri’s dark future. Timbaland guests.
“The Vampire Diaries” 8 p.m. the CW — Elena learns secrets about her birth mother and a connection with nasty Damon.
“Grey’s Anatomy” 9 p.m. ABC — Owen’s wartime past bubbles up after Teddy asks him to help with a patient who wants to die.
“The Office” 9 p.m. NBC — Michael gets booted from a bar.
“Project Runway” 10 p.m. Lifetime — Atlanta designer Anthony Williams keeps the quips coming.
“America’s Best Dance Crew” 10 p.m. MTV — Stone Mountain’s Jungle Boogie makes it to the top 5. This week, groups incorporate magical illusions into their dances.
“Private Practice” 10 p.m. ABC — Sam and Addison’s relationship leaves Naomi feeling betrayed.
“Who Do You Think You Are?” 8 p.m. NBC — Actor Matthew Broderick has a Civil War hero in his past.
“Caprica” 9 p.m. SyFy (first-season finale) — Daniel sets a deadline to reset the Cylon Zoe’s avatar is stuck in.
“Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution” 9 p.m. ABC (time-slot debut) — This chef attempts to improve the eating habits of Huntington, W.V., where pork rinds are more popular than salad.
“Kitchen Nightmares” 9 p.m. Fox — Chef Ramsay deals with yet another stubborn chef.
“The Best Thing I Ever Ate” 10 p.m. Food (second-season finale) — Giada De Laurentiis gabs about her favorite chilled treat.
“Top Yam: The Louisiana Queen Pageant” 10 p.m. TLC —The winner of this pageant gets a whopping $500.
“Kids’ Choice Awards 2010” 8 p.m. Saturday Nickelodeon — Kevin James hosts. Will the likes of Justin Bieber get slimed? Probably!
“Dark Relic” 9 p.m. Saturday SyFy — Set in 1099, Sir Gregory (James Frain) fights a demon unleashed by a Holy Land relic.
“The Simpsons” 8 p.m. Sunday Fox — Sacha Baron Cohen is voice of an Israeli tour guide. Surely, it will be tasteful.
“The Family Crews” 9:30 p.m. Sunday BET (first-season finale) — Crews comes across as a nice guy.
“Breaking Bad” 10 p.m. Sunday AMC — Despite Skyler’s attempt to divorce Walt, he still makes attempts to reconcile.
“Rich Bride, Poor Bride” 10 p.m. Sunday WE (fourth-season finale) — A feisty bride-to-be keeps a tight leash on her free-spending fiancé.