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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Bravo’s ‘Comedy’ just plain boring

Kevin McDonough United Feature Syndicate

Imagine you went to a party and met someone who could talk only about himself and his occupation. You might call that person boring.

The same could be said of “Situation: Comedy” (8 p.m., Bravo).

Like “Project Greenlight,” “Situation” invites unknown writers to offer story ideas and scripts to producers and television professionals, including show creator Sean Hayes (“Will & Grace”). The hopefuls discuss their shows and gush about how lucky they are to appear on a show as cool as “Situation: Comedy.”

And along the way, we see how producers and show runners whip a comedy from concept to script to finished pilot.

This is supposed to be fascinating, but it is not. After all, what other business is so obsessed with itself that it bores its potential customers with the nitty-gritty of its production process?

When you go to a Chevy showroom, the salesman doesn’t send you to a Dearborn factory and force you to watch an assembly line.

I want to use my computer, but frankly I don’t care how it’s manufactured. And the folks at Apple, or Dell or wherever, are just fine with that.

The most irksome aspect to shows like “Situation” and “Greenlight” is their air of self-congratulation. “Greenlight” promised to open the filmmaking process to independents, but all it did was show us the meta-creation of three forgettable films.

On “Situation,” Hayes says he wants to “save” TV comedy. Both shows reflect the creative bankruptcy of people who are so enamored of their own lives and business that they can’t conceive of anybody being interested in anything else.

The new series “Dirty Jobs” (9 p.m., Discovery) will make viewers grateful that scientists never invented smell-o-vision. During the course of the show, host Mike Rowe travels with a San Francisco sanitation crew, works the conveyor belts of a recycling center, watches tons of rotting produce turned into the “black gold” of industrial compost and scrambles over the grimy acreage of a vast automobile graveyard.

A television veteran, Rowe has hosted “Egypt Week Live” for Discovery and “Worst-Case Scenario” for TBS and has appeared on various shows for PBS and The History Channel. He claims to have sold over a $100 million in fake diamonds on QVC.

It’s easy to see why Rowe gets so much work. He brings a sly wit and intelligence to his reporting, and his slightly sardonic baritone delivery may remind viewers of Harry Shearer of “Spinal Tap” and “Simpsons” fame.

Best of all, Rowe is not shy about slipping in a literary reference or two, quoting Robert Frost while spreading compost or holding up an alternator from a forlorn Lincoln Town Car and lapsing into Hamlet: “Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him….” You can’t ask much more of a show about stinky jobs.

Other highlights

Parallel wives on “Trading Spouses” (8 p.m., Fox).

On two episodes of “Gilmore Girls” (WB), matchmaking (8 p.m.), and a campus tour (9 p.m.).

A poisoned teen may be part of a trend on “House” (9 p.m., Fox).

“Wide Angle” (9 p.m., KSPS) examines the often-desperate Zimbabweans who try to jump the border into neighboring Botswana.

A cult leader’s minor indiscretion on “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit” (10 p.m., NBC).

Antony and Octavius meet on the field of battle in the concluding episode of “Empire” (10 p.m., ABC).

A daughter examines the darker side of her father’s rugged individualism in the documentary “The Self-Made Man” on “P.O.V.” (10 p.m., KSPS).

“Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel” (10 p.m., HBO) celebrates Vin Scully, longtime announcer for the Dodgers.

Cult choice

James Bond (Sean Connery) comes back from the beyond to bash bad guys in Tokyo in the stylish 1967 adventure “You Only Live Twice” (9 p.m., Spike), featuring a theme song by Nancy Sinatra.

Series notes

A crop circle mystery on “Navy NCIS” (8 p.m., CBS) … Is anybody still watching “Average Joe: The Joes Strike Back” (8 p.m., NBC)? … Graduation day on “My Wife and Kids” (8 p.m., ABC) … Jealousy on “One on One” (8 p.m., UPN).

The search for Carmen on “George Lopez” (8:30 p.m., ABC) … Stranded for the holidays on “All of Us” (8:30 p.m., UPN).

Julie Chen hosts “Big Brother 6” (9 p.m., CBS) … Western civilization declines on “I Want to Be a Hilton” (9 p.m., NBC) … Something borrowed on “According to Jim” (9 p.m., ABC) … Maya’s dirty work on “Girlfriends” (9 p.m., UPN) … Bills to pay on “Rodney” (9:30 p.m., ABC) … A holiday nightmare on “Half & Half” (9:30 p.m., UPN) … Auditions on “Rock Star: INXS” (10 p.m., CBS).

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