TV picks for June 18: - "The Middle,” "Crazy Heart,” "Hawking”

  • Article by: NEAL JUSTIN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 17, 2014 - 12:21 PM
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ABC’s “The Middle” stars Neil Flynn, Patricia Heaton, Eden Sher, Atticus Shaffer and Charlie McDermott.

Photo: Bob D’Amico • ABC,

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Bubbling Brooke

Summer is a terrific time to catch up on sitcoms that you have been slow to embrace. Put “The Middle” at the top of the list. This week’s repeat not only features great performances from the regular cast (Eden Sher, playing the overly sunny daughter, deserves an Emmy nomination), but a very funny turn from Brooke Shields as a volatile neighbor, a role that finally showcases the actress’ comic chops. 7 p.m. KSTP, Ch. 5

Country strong

Jeff Bridges, who will perform at the Pantages in Minneapolis on Aug. 24, first displayed his musical talent in 2009’s “Crazy Heart,” a wonderful, small film that earned the actor a long deserved Oscar for his portrayal of an alcoholic country singer who takes one last stab at romance. 9 p.m. CMT

Scientific thinking

Stephen Hawking, maybe the most famous scientist since Albert Einstein, tells his extraordinary story in “Hawking,” a documentary that first aired in 2013. The only thing missing: a detailed breakdown of his participation in “The Big Bang Theory,” a sitcom Einstein himself would have probably done as well. 9 p.m. TPT, Ch. 2

Neal Justin

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