TV Daily

Salon's guide to what to watch on Monday: Tune in to see geeky guys at their game on "The Pick-Up Artist."

Published August 20, 2007 10:20AM (EDT)

Prime Pick

Photo: VH1

You may have seen him before, slinging advice in men's magazines or on his Web site. Now Erik von Markovik, aka Mystery, "the world's foremost expert in the art and science of social dynamics," has his own show -- on VH1, of course. While watching a seriously odd-looking guy in goggles and a furry pimp-daddy hat instructing a bunch of major geeks on how to make chicks swoon might not sound like a good time to you, you really have to tune in for at least one episode of "The Pick-Up Artist" (9 p.m. EDT on VH1). In the first episode, producers filled a bar with hidden cameras, threw some kind of a ladies night, then led the geeky lambs to the slaughter. The PUA watched from a van outside, then sent the guys back to the van to watch him get the girls. Amazingly enough, Mystery (and his sidekicks, known as "Master Pick-Up Artists," I kid you not) has got some serious game. I don't even know what that means -- or I didn't, until I saw this guy in action. And how will the geeky contestants learn to emulate the master? Well, they probably won't, but if the first two episodes are any indication, it'll sure be fun to see them try.


BBC America brings to the U.S. the popular British auto show "Top Gear," which promises stunts and challenges that take cars "to the limit and beyond." (This season's guests will include Ewan McGregor, Sir Michael Gambon and chef Gordon Ramsay.) The show debuts at 8 p.m. EDT, and is followed by a second episode at 9 p.m. And if you missed last week's debut episode of "Californication," starring David Duchovny as a hard-drinking, womanizing, washed-up writer, you might want to catch episode 2, airing at 10:30 p.m. EDT on Showtime.

On the talk shows

Regis and Kelly

ABC, 9 a.m. EDT

Patrick Dempsey, Sheryl Crow, Kirsten Dunst, Jordin Sparks (repeat)

The View

ABC, 11 a.m. EDT

Ashley Judd, guest co-host Sherri Shepherd (repeat)

Ellen DeGeneres

Syndicated, check local listings

Steve Harvey, Denver avalanche survivors (repeat)

Oprah Winfrey

Syndicated, check local listings

Dina McGreevey (repeat)

Charlie Rose

PBS, check local listings

Sen. John McCain

Larry King

CNN, 9 p.m. EDT

Christiane Amanpour

Jon Stewart

Comedy Central, 11 p.m. EDT

Gov. Tommy Thompson

Stephen Colbert

Comedy Central, 11:30 p.m. EDT

Nathan Sawaya

David Letterman

CBS, 11:30 p.m. EDT

Jeff Goldblum, Hayden Panettiere, New Pornographers

Jay Leno

NBC, 11:35 p.m. EDT

John Travolta, Tony Dungy, Neville Brothers (repeat)

Tavis Smiley

PBS, check local listings

Pras, the Fugees

Jimmy Kimmel

ABC, 12:05 a.m. EDT

Adam Brody, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Sean Kingston (repeat)

Conan O'Brien

NBC, 12:35 a.m. EDT

Lindsay Lohan, Larry the Cable Guy (repeat)

Craig Ferguson

CBS, 12:35 a.m. EDT

Tony Danza, Rose Byrne, Jeremy Fisher

Contributors: Matthew Fishbane, Heather Havrilesky, Amy Reiter

By Salon Staff

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