Tonight in HD: May 15

Series Premiere: GCB (TV2, 8.30, 5.1) When the reformed mean girl in high school returns home after a divorce scandal, she finds it’s not easy to escape the demons of her past — even if it is 20 years later. The irony of tonight’s premiere is the show’s just been axed in the US, where the ABC network had been grooming it to become the next-generation Desperate Housewives. Critics were split down the middle about GCB’s merits: “Even as a work of harmless vapidity, GCB has a difficult time enlivening its oversimplified premise” (The Washington Post); “the problem for GCB is that it hasn’t yet figured out a way to be a soap that spoofs superficiality without being superficial itself” (Time); “clever with its gaudiness, the new soap opera proceeds as if that invitation is gilt-edged, tackily engraved, and sealed inside an oversized envelope with a kiss of frosted-pink lipstick” (Slate). Among the familiar faces in new guises are JAG’s David James Elliott and Pushing Daisies’ Kristin Chenowith. ✮✮✮

SoHo Highlight: Five Days (Sky 10, 8.30) Season finale: Baby Michael’s future parents are decided; Nusrat and Danny struggle to come to terms with recent events; Laurie resolves the case on day 102 of the investigation. As The Times said: “In the end, there were just too many characters to care about, but better that than too few, and, as the [series] went on, you could appreciate the cleverness of the writer Gwyneth Hughes’s structuring of a story that began and ended at a modest railway bridge.” The DVD (but not Blu-ray) of the series goes on sale on June 6. ✮✮✮

Home & Away (TV3, 5.30) Brax confronts Hayley about Charlie’s death; April tries to get Heath to drop the invasive DNA test; Leah attempts to start over with Brax. ✮✮

Friends (TV2, 6.30, R) The gang has Thanksgiving flashbacks. ✮✮✮✮

Shortland Street (TV2, 7.00) Lana is used and abused; Nicole loses out on love; the past returns to haunt Callum. ✮✮✮

The Middle (TV2, 7.30, 5.1) Double episode: The Hecks take advantage of the Donohues’ car; and Valentine’s Day has the family swearing off love. ✮✮✮✮

Funny Roots (TV3, 8.00) 7 Days’ Paul Ego returns to where he was born and where his stand-up comedy career began, England, to see what part his heritage plays in his sense of humour. ✮✮✮

Yellowstone (TV One, 8.30, R, F) Series finale: With winter looming, elk move down the mountains to find food and beavers repair dams before ice freezes their ponds. ✮✮✮✮✮

NCIS (TV3, 8.30, 5.1) The 200th episode finds Gibbs questioning the choices he has made when he stares down the barrel of a gun at a local diner. ✮✮

NCIS: Los Angeles (TV3, 9.30, 5.1) This crossover episode sees joint NCIS: LA and Hawaii Five-0 task force travel from Hawaii to LA, when the lead suspect in the case moves to the mainland with a deadly virus in tow. (No word on when Hawaii Five-0 will return to the schedule.) ✮✮

The Closer (TV One, 11.05, 5.1) A man is murdered who, 10 years ago, was the lead suspect in the murder of two girls. Brothers & Sisters’ Tom Skerritt guest stars. ✮✮✮✮

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