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What to Watch Tonight: The Return of Luther, President Obama on Running Wild With Bear Grylls, and The Big Bang Theory

What to watch on Thursday, December 17...

8pm, CBS
The Big Bang Theory
The Force is finally with Sheldon and Amy (ehh? get it? ehhhhh?) in “The Opening Night Excitation,” which also finds Sheldon in a conundrum: spend time with her on her birthday, or go see a humble little space adventure that’s just hit movie theaters. Can the Jedi-esque dream advice of Prof. Proton help him decide?

8pm, The CW
iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2015
The Weeknd, Calvin Harris, Selena Gomez, Demi Lovato, and many more perform from Madison Square Garden.

8pm, Fox
American Country Countdown’s Top 10 Stories of 2015
Darius Rucker hosts this recap of the year in country music, featuring interviews and performances from Jason Aldean, Carrie Underwood, Little Big Town, and more.

8:30pm, CBS
Life in Pieces
Colleen accompanies John and his Air Force buddies in their tradition of dirty caroling, and you don’t even want to know what their renditions do with “wassail.” Elsewhere in “College Stealing Lice Caroling,” Joan commandeers Lark’s first Christmas from Jen and Greg, Tyler decides where he’ll matriculate, and Samantha’s sneaking out is ruined by a mall Santa in more ways than one.

9pm, BBC America
A three-hour special returns to the dark and sordid world of Detective Chief Inspector John Luther, whose attempts to lead a normal life (read: one not surrounded by violent psychopaths) are stymied by a new string of grisly crimes.

9pm, CBS
Christy and Bonnie try to be supportive when Regina tells them she doesn’t consider herself an alcoholic. Elsewhere in “Horny-Goggles and a Catered Intervention,” Wendy invites the ladies to a sober holiday soiree.

9pm, Lifetime
Project Runway: Junior
“Race to the Red Carpet” gives the designers just five hours to craft a look suitable for a grand entrance. But might they get an assist from a few surprise guests?

9:30pm, ABC
Barbara Walters Presents: The 10 Most Fascinating People of 2015
Bradley Cooper, Amy Schumer, Tracy Morgan, Misty Copeland, and Ronda Rousey are among this year’s dectet. The mystery of who will be named No. 1, though, hinges on whether Pizza Rat is technically considered “people.”

9:30pm, CBS
2 Broke Girls
Han mandates a team-building night out for the diner staff in “And the Escape Room.” But once they’re all trapped together in an Alice-in-Wonderland-themed chamber, they discover that Han has an ulterior motive that somehow makes this scenario even stranger.

10pm, NBC
Running Wild With Bear Grylls
President Barack Obama joins Bear on a journey through the Alaskan wilderness, including a visit to Exit Glacier that highlights the impact of climate change. Also there are s’mores!

10pm, Syfy
As the gang struggles to rebuild the Barn, hope of putting an end to the troubles runs short in “Now.” Meanwhile, Dwight is enticed by a gift and Nathan considers a brutal sacrifice.

10pm, CBS
In “The Cost of Doing Business,” Morland offers to play the role of an Irregular so he can help Sherlock and Joan crack a case. His special skills include enormous wealth, extensive influence, and more LinkedIn connections than the entire state of Connecticut.

10pm, Bravo
Top Chef
Palm Springs is the chefs’ next stop in “It’s a Dry Heat,” but before they can soak up that city they must fire up solar-powered stoves for a Quickfire in the desert. The main challenge involves cooking on a golf course, and anyone who can hit a croquette into the clown’s mouth on the first try wins a free game.

– The cast of Star Wars: The Force Awakens on Conan, 11pm, TBS
– Will Ferrell on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, 11pm, Comedy Central
– Pusha T on The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore, 11:30pm, Comedy Central
– Bruce Springsteen, Jeffrey Tambor, and Christ Stapleton on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, 11:35pm, NBC
– Michael Moore, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, Michael C. Hall, and a performance by the Broadway cast of Lazarus on Late Show with Stephen Colbert, 11:35pm, CBS
– Ryan Seacrest, Giada De Laurentiis, and R. Kelly on Jimmy Kimmel Live, 11:35pm, ABC
– Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Ike Barinholtz, Maya Rudolph, Rachel Dratch, Paula Pell, and Ilan Rubin on Late Night with Seth Meyers, 12:35am, NBC
– Seth MacFarlane and Lily Tomlin on The Late Late Show with James Corden, 12:37am, CBS

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