Tune in Tonight: ‘Super’ debuts for ‘Tracker’ and ‘Stupid Pet Tricks’

An adventure procedural with romance novel overtones, the new series “Tracker” (10 p.m., CBS, TV-14) gets TV’s most coveted treatment. It will debut following the Super Bowl, enjoying the massive ratings headwinds that the annual event provides.

Justin Hartley (“This Is Us,” “Smallville”) stars as Colter Shaw, a professional tracker who finds missing persons for a living and collects large awards offered by worried loved ones. Just don’t call him a bounty hunter. And he certainly doesn’t look like Dog the bounty hunter. He has the kind of hunky, just-entering-middle-age looks that could propel a dozen Hallmark movies.

In the opening scenes, he is seen rescuing a fetching hiker who had wandered off the trail and fallen into a ravine. In nearly every shot, he’s barely inches away from his rescue. He may be fixing her broken leg and trying to fend off hypothermia, but the camera angle suggests every Harlequin cover ever published or every screen kiss dating back to Rhett and Scarlett.

In the space of the thrill-packed pilot, he sets about collecting a reward from a freaked-out mother whose semi-sketchy ex has snatched her son. Over the course of 40-some adventurous minutes, he ferrets out the truth from his deceptive client, calls his tech-savvy, wounded-warrior pal, Bob (Eric Graise); breaks a few dozen laws; ends up in the slammer; gets bailed out by a powerful lawyer, Reenie (Fiona Rene), who just happens to be an angry ex-lover); enrages and enlists the local authorities; bewitches an earnest young officer (Paniz Zade); and, after a few twists, pursues his prey to a 20,000-acre wilderness and (spoiler alert) ends up in a situation that can literally be described as a cliff-hanger. All before an escape inspired by (or stolen from) “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.”

The quirkiest wrinkle is the fact that his agents and “wranglers” (Abby McEnany and Mary McDonnell) happen to be a same-sex couple, gay Charlies to his lone-wolf Angel. This may seem daring or “woke,” but it actually serves an old-fashioned purpose. They can feign disinterest in shirtless, studly Colter, leaving female viewers to have him for themselves.

“Tracker” will assume its place in CBS’s Sunday-night schedule next week. The first two episodes are directed by Ken Olin (“thirtysomething”).

— Just as “Puppy Bowl XX” (2 p.m., Sunday, Animal Planet, Discovery, TV-PG) enters its third decade, comedian Sarah Silverman hosts “Stupid Pet Tricks” (5 p.m., Sunday, TBS, Animal Planet, Discovery, TV-14), a revival of the classic segment from David Letterman’s late-night talk show. A bearded Letterman shows up at the outset to pass the torch of silliness to Silverman, but not before a little humiliation. He also revives his old “Top Ten List” segment to inform her of the other “talent” they considered before settling on her.

For all of Letterman’s patented passive-aggressive bluster, Silverman is a good choice to host this reboot, blending pet-friendly enthusiasm with eye-rolling incredulity in the face of some of the human handlers. In the first half-hour segment, she will interact with a retired rodeo clown, a goat who teaches yoga and other curiosities.

After this pre-Super Bowl preview, “Stupid Pet Tricks” will air on TBS every Monday night at 9 p.m.

Proof that comedians often get to demonstrate a range of performances denied to dramatic actors, Silverman has the distinction of debuting this weekend in “Stupid Pet Tricks” at the same time she appears in the Oscar-nominated Netflix movie “Maestro,” as Leonard Bernstein’s sister, Shirley.

While we’re on the subject of Letterman, or Letterman-adjacent material, “Late Night With Stephen Colbert” (approximately 11 p.m., CBS) will make a special Sunday night appearance. Scheduled guests include John Krasinski, Ryan Gosling and Jon Stewart.


— Cedric the Entertainer and Tichina Arnold host “The Super Bowl Soulful Celebration 25th Anniversary” (8 p.m., CBS, TV-PG) featuring performances by Kirk Franklin, Mary Mary, Robin Thicke, Players Choir and Earth, Wind & Fire.

— Purdue hosts Indiana in college basketball (8 p.m., Fox).

— A predator snatches a young woman walking home from a family gathering the 2024 shocker “Abducted Off the Street: The Carlesha Gaither Story” (8 p.m., Lifetime, TV-14).

— A bookish woman imagines that her favorite author has entered her life in the 2024 romance “Love & Jane” (8 p.m., Hallmark, TV-G).

— “Love & Marriage D.C.” (8 p.m., OWN, TV-14) follows couples introduced on an earlier reality series, “Ready to Love.”

— The Golden State Warriors host the Phoenix Suns in NBA action (8:30 p.m., ABC).


— The San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs meet in Super Bowl LVIII (6:30 p.m., CBS). Live from Las Vegas.

— In the season finale of “Miss Scarlett and the Duke” on “Masterpiece” (8 p.m., PBS, TV-PG, check local listings), Eliza searches for a fugitive.

— Helen returns on “All Creatures Great and Small” on “Masterpiece” (9 p.m., PBS, TV-PG, check local listings).

— The quirky neighbors have mixed motives on “Monsieur Spade” (9 p.m., AMC, TV-MA).

— The mining company has much to hide on “True Detective: Night Country” (9 p.m., HBO, TV-MA).

— More dark secrets emerge from the convent’s past on “The Woman in the Wall” (9 p.m., Showtime, TV-MA).

— A cast reunion brings some surprises on the season finale of “Funny Woman” (10 p.m., PBS, TV-14, check local listings).


A lurid Technicolor melodrama directed by Douglas Sirk, the 1956 potboiler “Written on the Wind” (8 p.m., Saturday, TCM, TV-PG) goes over the top and then some. Predating “Dallas” by two decades, it stars Robert Stack and Dorothy Malone as the hard-drinking children of fabulously wealthy oil barons. Stack plays a jealous husband consumed with theories that his wife (Lauren Bacall) has betrayed him with his friend (Rock Hudson). Malone won an Oscar for her permance and was later cast in ABC’s prime-time soap “Peyton Place” (1964-69), along with Mia Farrow and the late Ryan O’Neal.


“The Wall” (8 p.m., NBC, r, TV-PG) … “NBA Countdown” (8 p.m., ABC) … “48 Hours” (9 p.m. and 10 p.m., CBS) … “Weakest Link” (9 p.m., NBC, r, TV-PG) … Vintage helpings of “Saturday Night Live” (10 p.m., and 11:30 p.m., NBC, r, TV-14).


Bart and Lisa console a broken-hearted Marge on “The Simpsons” (8 p.m., Fox, r, TV-PG) … “America’s Got Talent: Fantasy League” (8 p.m., NBC, r, TV-PG) … The invention of the jury trial on “Krapopolis” (8:30 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14).

“Dateline” (9 p.m., NBC, r) … A private chef gig on “Bob’s Burgers” (9 p.m., Fox, r, TV-PG) … “Celebrity Jeopardy!” (9 p.m. and 10 p.m., ABC, r, TV-PG) … Meg becomes a surrogate mother on “Family Guy” (9:30 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14).