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TV best best for the week of Feb. 16

Sunday, Feb. 16

“American Idol”

ABC, 8 p.m.

Season premiere

Returning to the iconic judges’ desk are music industry legends and all-star “American Idol” judges Luke Bryan, Katy Perry and Lionel Richie. Emmy Award-winning producer Ryan Seacrest returns as host, and multimedia personality Bobby Bones will return as in-house mentor.


History, 8 p.m.

New miniseries

This three-night, six-hour documentary event will weave together dramatic live-action sequences, excerpts from George Washington’s letters, and insights from a roster of notable experts, historians and scholars to tell a very personal story about the evolution of one of history’s most iconic leaders.

“Race for the White House”

CNN, 9 p.m.

Season premiere

Oscar winner Mahershala Ali narrates this six-part docuseries that uses rare archival footage, interviews and stylized dramatizations to tell the story of one iconic presidential campaign in each episode. Elections covered this season include Wilson vs. Roosevelt vs. Taft (1912), Eisenhower vs. Stevenson (1952), Johnson vs. Goldwater (1964), Carter vs. Ford (1976), Reagan vs. Carter (1980) and Obama vs. McCain (2008).

Monday, Feb. 17

“America’s Got Talent: The Champions”

NBC, 8 p.m.

Season finale

The series that brings together the most memorable and talented acts from “Got Talent” competitions around the globe crowns its Season 2 champion Monday.

“The Green River Killer: Mind of a Monster”

Investigation Discovery, 9 p.m.

The latest in ID’s “Mind of a Monster” series of specials focuses on Gary Ridgway, one of America’s most prolific serial killers, who was convicted of murdering 49 women in Washington state from 1982 to 2001, though he confessed to 71 murders and is believed to have committed more than 90. The two-hour special uses chilling tapes and video archives of Ridgway’s police interviews to gain insight into his evil.

“Tails of Joy”

Hallmark Channel, 10 p.m.

Follow Paw Works’ rescue and their group of 60 dogs and cats as they care for their animals, watch them begin to flourish, identify their unique personalities, and ultimately place them in loving homes. This heartwarming journey offers a powerful message of hope and encourages families to adopt, not shop. Hosted by Larissa Wohl.

Tuesday, Feb. 18

“Finding Your Roots”

PBS, 8 p.m.

Henry Louis Gates Jr. explores the roots of talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel and actors Marisa Tomei and John Turturro, introducing them to ancestors who made immense sacrifices to bring their families from Italy to America.

“Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back”

Fox, 9 p.m.

Gordon Ramsay travels to Oak Park, California, where he and his crew must overhaul The Park gastropub. Former NFL player Rob Gronkowski guest-stars in the new episode “The Park Restaurant & Bar.”

“Amazon Empire: The Rise of Jeff Bezos”

PBS, 9 p.m.

“Frontline” investigates the darker side of Amazon’s rapid growth, and the challenge of trying to rein in the power of the richest man in the world.

Wednesday, Feb. 19

“Criminal Minds”

CBS, 9 p.m.

Series finale

“Criminal Minds” ends its run after 15 seasons with a two-part series finale. In “Face Off,” the BAU team sets out on an epic hunt to capture Everett “The Chameleon” Lynch (returning guest star Michael Mosley). Then in “And in the End,” Dr. Reid (Matthew Gray Gubler) is guided by ghosts from his past, while the BAU’s shocking discovery about Lynch takes a personal turn for Rossi (Joe Mantegna).

“Black Patriots: Heroes of the Revolution”

History, 10 p.m.

NBA legend, author and esteemed activist Kareem Abdul-Jabbar executive produces and is featured in this hourlong documentary that paints a comprehensive picture of the African American experience during the Revolutionary War. It shares the story of the war within the revolution through the eyes of some of the most crucial and significant black figures of our country’s foundation, including Crispus Attucks, Peter Salem, Phillis Wheatley and James Armistead Lafayette.

“Year of the Rabbit”

IFC, 10:30 p.m.

New series

Matt Berry (“What We Do in the Shadows”) stars as Detective Inspector Rabbit, a hardened booze hound and loose-cannon cop in Victorian London. He’s aided and abetted by his new partner Wilbur Strauss (Freddie Fox) and the country’s first female police officer, Mabel Wisbech (Susan Wokoma), as they bring justice to the streets of the East End. The premiere finds the trio investigating the murder of a cabaret girl.

Thursday, Feb. 20

“Last Man Standing”

Fox, 8 p.m.

Mike’s (Tim Allen) offer to help Jen (Krista Marie Yu) with her school’s bake sale goes up in smoke when he suggests she set up camp outside of Bud’s Buds. Jay Leno guest-stars in the new episode “Baked Sale.”

“A Year in Music: 1971”

AXS TV, 8:30 p.m.

Former MTV VJ Matt Pinfield hosts this episode that looks back at the music of 1971, covering everything from the end of the Beatles to the rise of activism in music.

“Will & Grace”

NBC, 9 p.m.

Despite her history of transgressions, Grace (Debra Messing) and her neighbor James (guest star Matt Letscher) decide to give their relationship one more shot. But when James invites Grace to his job at the aquarium, she endangers his job and a species. To help Will (Eric McCormack) deal with his anxiety about becoming a father, Jack (Sean Hayes) takes him to an unexpected place to blow off steam — church. Karen (Megan Mullally) finds herself in a confessional booth, and a visit from Smitty (guest star Charles C. Stevenson Jr.) makes her reconsider their entire relationship.

Friday, Feb. 21

“The Last Thing He Wanted”


Anne Hathaway, Ben Affleck, Rosie Perez, Willem Dafoe and Mel Rodriguez lead the cast of this political thriller set against the nebulous backdrop of the 1980s Iran-Contra scandal and based on the Joan Didion novel of the same name.

“Fresh Off the Boat”

ABC, 8 p.m.

Series finale

In “Family Van,” the first episode of the two-part finale, Jaleel White guest-stars, and when the trusty Huang van takes a turn for the worst, Jessica (Constance Wu) and Louis (Randall Park) each process the loss in their own way. In the second episode, “Commencement,” Jessica grapples with her vision of the future as the boys are each realizing what their own goals are. Andy Richter guest-stars.

“The Hours”

TCM, 7:30 p.m.

Continuing its “31 Days of Oscar” celebration, Turner Classic Movies presents the network premiere of this acclaimed, Oscar-winning 2002 psychological drama based on the novel by Michael Cunningham. Nicole Kidman won a best actress Oscar for her performance, and she is joined by a stellar cast including Miranda Richardson, Julianne Moore, John C. Reilly, Meryl Streep, Ed Harris and many more.

Saturday, Feb. 22

NAACP Image Awards

BET, 8 p.m.

The annual ceremony honors the accomplishments of people of color in the fields of television, music, literature and film and recognizes individuals or groups who promote social justice through creative endeavors. Netflix leads this year’s television nominees with 30 nods and has 12 more movie nominations, for titles including “Dear White People,” “When They See Us” and “American Son.” This marks the first year that the Image Awards, previously televised by TV One, are being broadcast by BET.

“Love in Store”

Hallmark Channel, 9 p.m.

Shopping network hosts Terrie (Alexandra Breckenridge) and David (Robert Buckley) have different styles and personalities that clash. Each wants a promotion, but first they’ll have to get along as co-hosts.

“Whitmer Thomas: The Golden One”

HBO, 10 p.m.

Comedian and actor Whitmer Thomas features his deeply personal, provocative and unconventional stand-up and original songs in his first hourlong special from the legendary Flora-Bama Lounge, located along the state line between Florida and Alabama.

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TV best bets for the week of Feb. 23

This week’s top choices include the return of the “Breaking Bad” prequel “Better Call Saul.”