FREE TO AIR
Mythbusters, SBS One, 7.30pm
Tonight, Adam and Jamie leave behind the busting of myths to revisit the life-saving, functional value of their two favourite materials: duct tape and bubble wrap. The shtick is this: on their way to see a bloke walk across the Grand Canyon on a tightrope, the boys are led astray by their GPS and find themselves stranded in the desert, with no petrol and only a boot full of tape and wrap. To return to civilisation, they need to survive freezing conditions, drag their gear many kilometres, abseil 50 metres down a canyon and brave the rapids of a wide brown river. In past episodes, we have seen the mythbusters use duct tape to lift a car, build a bridge and make a cannon. Here, they use the miracle substances to make rope, sleeping bags, a travois and a couple of watercraft. Come the apocalypse, I want these blokes in my corner.
Blue Bloods, Channel Ten, 9.30pm
Police Commissioner Frank Reagan (Tom Selleck) exudes maturity and wisdom from every pore. He is ethical virtue personified - or was, until this episode. As son Jamie's police partner faces dismissal for an honest error caused by a mind-snap during the heat of the moment, Frank admits to his own early-career misdemeanour. The admission changes his family's view of his upstanding perfection and feeds the view of this series that sometimes police are right to cut corners when they know they have a guilty party in their sights but don't quite have a legally kosher case tied up.
Parks and Recreation, Seven, 12.30am (Tues)
Nurse Ann (Rashida Jones) has a habit of getting too wrapped up in the personality of her boyfriend, so she decides to start dating herself. Friend and local government bureaucrat Leslie (Amy Poehler) is shocked when Ann announces they - Ann and herself - want a baby and is (are?) heading down to the Sperm Bank of America at lunchtime to make a withdrawal. They've only been dating for six weeks, for goodness' sake. Meanwhile, the boys have to choose a caterer for Leslie and Ben's wedding (Ron's reaction to being served salad: ''Excuse me, you've accidentally given me food that my food eats'') with stomach-churning consequences. Adopting the same fly-on-the-wall style as The Office, Parks and Recreation is a cute, occasionally scything commentary on the processes and characters of local government.
Cesar to the Rescue, Nat Geo Wild, 7.30pm
Editing can work wonders - just ask the TV ''psychics'' who get all their misses chopped out so it looks as though they make only hits. Even so, the effect Cesar Millan has on dogs is amazing. Millan, it seems, can turn the most savage, snarling hellhound into a meekly compliant pup merely by picking up its leash. In this series, he is helping people who have been dobbed in by friends, family or neighbours for having problem dogs. Tonight's first case is a mid-sized monster called Misty that has bitten its owners and their kids multiple times.
Bill's Kitchen: Notting Hill, LifeStyle Food, 8.30pm
Australian chef Bill Granger now spends much of his time in London, where he has a restaurant in Notting Hill and is about to open another in Clerkenwell. As we see here, he enjoys leisurely weekend strolls along Portobello Road, and he is quite relaxed about putting his young daughters in front of the camera. Tonight's menu is a scrummy one, starting with buttermilk pancakes topped with caramelised rhubarb. Then there is a chorizo and chickpea soup; a pear and blueberry almond shortcake; and a chicken, olive and preserved-lemon pie baked in paper-thin pastry. Granger does a good job of explaining what he is doing and why, and it all looks simple enough to try yourself.
Disclosure (1994) Gem, 9.30pm
In the 1990s, Michael Crichton's high-tech paperback thrillers were the equivalent of today's comic-book adaptations: everyone wanted to make one. There was Jurassic Park, Congo, Sphere, Timeline and The 13th Warrior, but aside from Spielberg's dinosaurs the most successful was Barry Levinson's Disclosure, which benefited from the moviegoer's habit of embracing Michael Douglas and the flawed characters he played. Here he is Tom Sanders, a Seattle hardware company boss caught up in merger politics and an attempt at seduction by a former girlfriend and now colleague, Meredith Johnson (Demi Moore), which results in a sexual discrimination claim. A horror movie for white-collar men, with Moore as the nightmarish figure promising illicit pleasure and delivering corporate exile, the movie is unassumingly constructed, but there is genuine chemistry, turned malignant, between Douglas and Moore.
Aliens (1986) Action Movies (pay TV), 10pm
Few films get the sequel they deserve. The best example remains the pairing of 1979's Alien, where Ridley Scott made a terrifying sci-fi horror story about the crew of a space freighter being picked off by a nightmarish creature, followed by 1986's Aliens, an extraterrestrial war movie that becomes a battle of survival as James Cameron conjures up a destructive wave of the original rapacious beast. The twinned protagonists remain the same: Sigourney Weaver's Ellen Ripley and the Alien Queen, a pair of powerful women in relentlessly masculine fields of film. Cameron again shows how technology can be humanity's downfall, a theme from The Terminator, as a group of high-tech space marines are dispatched to a distant planet where settlers may have uncovered more of the creature Ripley previously slew. Their tactics and training are no match for the primal foe and it proves to be the women on the team - Ripley, a little girl who survived the initial attack and a female marine - who navigate the response.