What's On This Week

MONDAY, OCT. 20

GOSSIP GIRL
8 P.M. | CW
Now that she's done being the emotional doormat for the Upper East Side, defiant Serena (Blake Lively) misbehaves at a posh event.

TUESDAY, OCT. 21

LIVING WITH THE WOLFMAN
10 P.M. | ANIMAL PLANET
Wolf expert Shaun Ellis introduces fiancée Helen Jeffs to the pack.

THURSDAY, OCT. 23

CELEBRITY REHAB WITH DR. DREW
10 P.M. | VH1
A new season as Dr. Drew treats ex-American Idol star Nikki McKibbin, who checks in with a drug problem.

JOHNNY CASH'S AMERICA
9 P.M. | BIO
Two-hour documentary about country music's legendary Man in Black, who passed away in '03.

ELEVENTH HOUR
10 P.M. | CBS
Dr. Jacob Hood (Rufus Sewell) investigates a string of cases in which paralysis is related to possible food contamination.

SATURDAY, OCT. 25

SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE
11:30 P.M. | NBC
Jon Hamm, Mad Men's Don Draper, is host. If only he'd been on sooner, he could have gone gray and played Mitt Romney.

CW, Oct. 22, 9 p.m. ET

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NEW SERIES!

REALITY
The latest cultural trickle-down from The Devil Wears Prada, this reality challenge takes us into the glamour-dripping honeycomb of Elle magazine. There we anticipate making the terrifying acquaintance of the show's power figure, fashion news editor Anne Slowey. She makes an obnoxious, haughty entrance, judging breakfast trays prepared by 11 contestants vying for an editorial position. She compliments the winner for decorating the tray with a "minimalist, Brancusi-esque candleholder, which I happen to love."

The surprise of the first few episodes, however, is that neither Slowey nor her sidekick, creative director Joe Zee, are demons. For the most part, they're professionally reserved, as if aware that Human Resources might step in at any moment with a warning about employee lawsuits. It's the contestants: Even by reality standards, they're an enjoyably awful crowd—ruthless, pitiless. In the second episode, one of them suffers a scary meltdown brought on by fears of being backstabbed. It's Repugnant Betty.

Lifetime, Oct. 20, 8:30 p.m. ET

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NEW SERIES!

COMEDY
No question: Nicole Sullivan, a comic actress with a long string of credits (MADtv, The King of Queens), deserves her own show. As Rita Clemens, a worn-down suburban mom who gets an unexpected lift when she picks up her old guitar and starts noodling around with a music career, Sullivan is pert with a light dusting of cynicism. Her performance, in other words, is precisely right. The problem is that Rita is already such a familiar character. Falling somewhere between Shirley Partridge and Roseanne Barr, she doesn't give Sullivan an opportunity to really rock.

In Sex & Lies in Sin City—The Ted Binion Scandal (Lifetime, Oct. 25), the 49-year-old actor steps into the shoes of a wealthy, drug-addled casino heir.

ON WHY THE RICH MESS UP
There are so many examples of people who fall victim to privilege: too much money, too much access to drugs. Just look at the celebrities who've lost their lives to that kind of access.

ON HIS OWN STEADINESS
I'm thankful to my mother and father—I'm the youngest of seven. And I think being married [to wife Cari since 1980] helped keep me grounded and focused on the good things in life.

ON HIS GREEN ACRES PHASE
We used to have a farm in upstate New York. I got Lyme disease, and my wife fell from a 40-ft. tree swing. We said, "Goodbye, country life!"

• The actress, 37, who just had a fling with Chace Crawford on Gossip Girl, is Christian Slater's wife on NBC's My Own Worst Enemy and will soon be turning up on Californication.

THREE SHOWS IN ONE SEASON! HOW DO YOU MANAGE?
It was a lot of flying. Plus, my teenage son and daughter are junior Olympians in track and field. So this summer I was also flying in for the weekend to their meets. We were in North Carolina and Florida. I knew I was getting on a plane, I just didn't know what direction it was pointing.

HOW'S CHRISTIAN AS A COSTAR?
He's not just the lead of the show, he's the double lead of the show. He's working nonstop! I keep checking on him. He's always, "I'm fine!" He's surprised me in that he has this presence—this movie star presence.

WAS YOUR DAUGHTER JEALOUS OF YOU AND CHACE? The premiere aired the night of her birthday and she had all of her friends over. [When they left] one girl goes, "Good to see you! Awkward!"