Is "The Philanthropost" (NBC, 10 p.m.) worth your while in a mostly reality-filled summer?
I wouldn't know: NBC didn't send me a copy of this summer filler series. And the reviews have been mixed.
On the plus side, the series was created by Tom Fontana, who has given us the likes of "Homicide" and "Oz" over the years. It also stars James Purefoy ("Rome") in the title role, so it's probably worth it to at least watch the first one.
Purefoy plays a billionaire who wants to help save the world, and do so in a more substantial way than just writing checks. His team includes Neve Campbell and Jesse L. Martin, among others.
The critics who like the series say the acting is good and the storytelling is earnest, while the detractors feel the setup is pretty silly.
The series is set for an eight-episode run this summer.
AMC ADDS ANOTHER SERIES: Arguably TV's best network right now in terms of creativity, AMC will debut "Rubicon" in 2010. It's a 12-episode political thriller in which a think tank analyst (James Badge Dale, "24") uncovers a conspiracy. It also stars Miranda Richardson, Lily Taylor and Peter Gerety. The deal was announced Wednesday.
WEDNESDAY'S BEST BETS: ABC has drawn some criticism over how it is handling tonight's "Primetime" at 10 p.m. Conservatives say the network is too worried about presenting President Obama's health care plan from Obama's perspective.
In fact, the show is taking it on as a Q-and-A format, and as long as the network does a thorough investigation that looks at the plan's benefits and problems, I don't have an issue with it. After all, this is a plan being presented by the White House; I'm not sure how else the network could present it.
Fox offers two hours of "So You Think You Can Dance" at 8 p.m., while NBC foists new episodes of "I'm A Celebrity..." and "America's Got Talent" before "The Philanthropist" debuts. I hope the Obama plan includes two aspirin for that lineup.
On cable, "Top Chef Masters" (Bravo, 10 p.m.) is new.
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