'RuPaul's Drag Race'
Minnesotans have always fared well on this Emmy-winning series, starting with BeBe Zahara Benet, who was the very first champ. The 13th season has a local favorite again — Utica Queen, whose stage name is a nod to her hometown, Utica, Minn., pop. 291. The performer's group wasn't featured last week, which means Utica should get plenty of screen time in this weekend's episode. 7 p.m. Fridays, VH1
'The Magic of Callas'
Even if your interest in opera is limited to Elmer Fudd singing "Kill the Wabbit," check out this majestic documentary about Maria Callas, the diva-iest diva of them all. The one-hour special centers around an excerpt from the 1964 production of "Tosca" with color commentary from modern-day artists, including Rufus Wainwright and Anna Prohaska. The archived footage is limited, but each minute speaks volumes. 9 p.m. Friday, TPT, Ch. 2
Gaelynn Lea & the Tweedys
Duluth's magic-spinning singer, songwriter, violinist, educator, disabled-persons advocate and "NPR Tiny Desk Contest" champ earned a rave reception from both audience and headliners when she opened for (and joined) Wilco in St. Paul in November 2019. Now she's reuniting with that band's frontman, Jeff Tweedy, and his son Spencer for a special virtual pairing as part of her ongoing Quarantine Concerts series. 2 p.m. Sunday, YouTube.com/gaelynnlea
'Real Time With Bill Maher'
Maher predicted that Donald Trump would win in 2016 — and that he wouldn't concede four years later. What does grumpy Nostradamus see for the future? Find out when his late-night series returns for its 19th season with guest Kellyanne Conway. Maher's closing monologues are as well written and thought-provoking as anything you'll find on editorial pages. Sometimes they're even hilarious. 9 p.m. Friday, HBO
The best movie of 2020 isn't opening until Feb. 19 — thanks, COVID — but while we wait for Frances McDormand's trip through "Nomadland," get ready with filmmaker Chloé Zhao's previous feature, about a modern-day Native cowboy in the South Dakota Badlands. Zhao works magic with John Ford-worthy scenery and a cast of nonactors led by Brady Jandreau, whose hard-won identity as a rodeo champion is jeopardized by a traumatic injury. His quiet star quality will grip you from heartbreaking start to wistful finish. Available to stream or buy via Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, Vudu, Redbox and more
A festival of 'cursed films'
The pandemic sucked the life out of in-person film festivals, but it has made it possible to attend festivals in other cities without booking a flight. Microwave some popcorn and settle in for Los Angeles-based Film Maudit 2.0, featuring unusual or shocking films from 25 countries. Thematically inspired by French avant-garde filmmaker and writer Jean Cocteau's "Festival du Film Maudit" ("Festival of Cursed Films"), it includes many films that would be considered too risqué for other film festivals. Curated programs explore themes such as queer Latinx identity and sex-positive content that would be banned by mainstream outlets. Minneapolis represents with filmmaker Charlie Griak's "Nina of the Woods," described as a "Bigfoot version of 'The Blair Witch Project' mixed with [Russian filmmaker Andrei] Tarkovsky." One of 18 feature films in the festival, it's about a cynical documentary crew that follows a mysterious wilderness guide. Jan. 12-24. Free. watch.filmmaudit.org
Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute Concert
The University of Minnesota's 40th annual MLK tribute concert is going virtual this year. Curated and hosted by G. Phillip Shoultz III of VocalEssence, the program will feature performances by Christopher Rochester, Chadwick "Niles" Phillips, University of Minnesota choirs, VocalEssence Singers of This Age and the Minnesota Chorale with singers from South Africa. 3 p.m. Sunday, free, z.umn.edu/mlk21
'Game Night With a Ranger'
It may be too chilly to take a walk through the park, but you can get in touch with nature through this modestly priced virtual show sponsored by the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area and Fearless Comedy Productions. Audience members have a chance to win books and tote bags, but the real reward is watching comedians and special guests giggle through environment-related games that would be right at home if Jimmy Fallon moved to the Discovery Channel. Next week's topic: Minneapolis locks and dams. 7 p.m. Thursdays, eventbrite.com