Watch it

“Rubicon” (8 and 9 p.m., AMC). Series premiere. The start of a terrific new thriller series starring James Badge Dale (“The Pacific”) as an analyst for a think tank who uncovers a massive shadow-government conspiracy. The 8 p.m. pilot episode first ran after the “Breaking Bad” finale in June; the 9 p.m. episode is fresh. If you like quality TV, check ’em out. It’s slow-paced, but smart and compelling. Check out my previous review here.

“Mad Men” (10 p.m., AMC). A late-arriving surprise and an unwelcome guest threaten the agency’s Christmas party.

Record it

“Ultimate Air Jaws” (9 p.m., Discovery). Shark Weeks kicks off with a new look at the jumping great whites of South Africa, shot in HD with super slo-mo. Looks way cool.

“The Next Food Network Star” (9 p.m., Food Network). The cooks make a dish based on an emotion and serve it to Eve Longoria Parker. Whatever, just end the charade and declare Aarti the winner.

“True Blood” (9 p.m., HBO). Sookie makes a desperate effort to rescue Bill.

“My Boys” (10 p.m., TBS). The gang goes barhopping for Mike’s birthday, and Steph learns her book might be made into a movie.

“Hung” (10 p.m., HBO). Damon’s emergency threatens Ray’s “date” with an important client. I’m falling waaaay behind on this. I need to pull a catch-up marathon.

“Entourage” (10:30 p.m., HBO). I missed it last week, but didn’t really miss it. That doesn’t bode well. Tonight is guest-star-a-palooza, with Jessica Simpson, Aaron Sorkin, Mike Tyson, Sasha Grey, Bob Saget and Stan Lee. Now that would be an interesting crowd to have dinner with.

“Childrens Hospital” (10:30, Cartoon Network). The title is “This Kid’s Getting a Vasectomy.” Enough said.

Skip it

“HGTV Design Star” (10 p.m., HGTV). There are some really crappy designers this season. You get the feeling Vern wants to spit on half of them.

PS: Follow me now on Twitter ( for alerts and bonus . . . oh, let’s call it “content.”