A Capitol Fourth
PBS, Friday, 8 ET/PT (times may vary)
Granted, Independence Day tends to be an outside holiday, but for those of you spending the evening inside with your TV, PBS offers this entertaining annual special from the West Lawn of the Capitol, hosted by Tom Bergeron and featuring performances by Frankie Valli and Patti LaBelle, among others. Yes, NBC has its own special from New York —but NBC doesn't have Valli or LaBelle, so PBS wins.
CRITIC'S CORNER CHAT RETURNS JULY 28: Read the latest transcript; tweet early questions to @BiancoRobert
Last Tango in Halifax
PBS, Sunday, 8 ET/PT
Alan and Celia (Derek Jacobi and Anne Reid) celebrate their first day as husband and wife, or at least try to in this not-as-gentle-as-you-might-think examination of mature love. The stories can veer a bit heavily into soap opera, but it's well-done, well-acted soap opera, and Jacobi and Reid hold the center like the talented pros they are. If you're a Jacobi fan (and how can you not be?), just make sure you bail before PBS gets to Vicious: What that show does to him, you don't want to see.
The '90s: The Last Great Decade?
National Geographic, Sunday, 9 ET/PT
National Geographic reflects on the '90s in a three-part special, narrated by Rob Lowe, that starts with a look at the first Gulf War. As for whether it actually was "the last great decade" — my goodness, let's hope not.