Some comic actors are better identified by their characters they portray, like Ken Marino: You may know him as Auggie’s slacker step-dad; a Jewish summer camp counselor/unlikely virgin; or a Los Angeles caterer and future Soup R’ Crackers franchise owner. But comedy buffs identify Marino as a member of The State — a New York comedy group that produced a ’90s MTV sketch series by the same name, which helped propel the likes of Michael Showalter, Joe Lo Truglio, Thomas Lennon and several other comedians. Many State alumni have gone on to play hilarious supporting roles in cult classics like Wet Hot American Summer and more recent hits like I Love You, Man and Role Models. On the small screen, we often find them in outrageous character-driven roles (which is why Lennon will always be Lt. Dangle to me). We’ll see if “Fireman Mark” gets added to the list of Marino’s aliases, as his mock dating web series Burning Love makes its television debut (Series Premiere, 10 p.m. Monday, E!).
The series, in its second season on Yahoo, spoofs reality dating shows like The Bachelor. Marino plays Mark Orlando, a single, 34-year-old fireman looking for love. Party Down co-star Adam Scott and fellow Stater Michael Ian Black join Kristen Bell, Malin Akerman and plenty of big-name guest stars.
WEDNESDAY FEB. 20
Survivor: Caramoan – Fans vs. Favorites (8 p.m., CBS) – It looks like The Beard will be in the game for a while! Unanticipated challenge: dealing with the “cool kids table.”
Workaholics (10 p.m., Comedy Central) -– Adam and Anders try to strike it rich as inventors; Blake joins a teen artist group.
The Americans (10 p.m., FX) – Stan investigates to find out if the KGB was involved in an assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan.
Kroll Show (10:30 p.m., Comedy Central) – Dr. Armond’s son Roman (Andy Milonakis) gets his own spin-off; Oh, Hello’s Gil and George hoop it up; the art of dine-and-dash.
Parks and Recreation (8:30 p.m., NBC) – Two back-to-back episodes! Leslie walks down the aisle! Ben may not be Joe Biden, but he comes pretty damn close.
Project Runway (9 p.m., Lifetime) – The teams design red carpet looks for Country star Miranda Lambert.
Immortalized (10 p.m., AMC) – It’s kind of surprising that AMC would produce disjointed, cliché reality competition tropes (fake rivalry banter, the unnecessary use of an “arena”), but a weak show on this network is still more interesting than most churned-out game shows.
FRIDAY FEB. 22
Portlandia (10 p.m., IFC) – The Rats move away from their newly gentrified neighborhood; director Gahvin Quin goes on a date to the movies; new moms and dads read up on various parenting techniques.
Out There (Series Premiere, 10:30 p.m., IFC) – IFC’s new animated series follows small-town teenaged outsiders Chad and Chris as they navigate girls, Gulp-N-Go and growing up.
SATURDAY FEB. 23
16th Annual Cincinnati Entertainment Awards (9 p.m., Channel 4) – If you missed January’s CEAs at Madison Theater or the evening’s flow of cocktails left your memory fuzzy, tune into this broadcast of the fun, music-packed show. Check icrctv.com to see if you get the community access channel streaming the show multiple times through March 6, or watch the awards online starting Saturday.
2013 Film Independent Spirit Awards (10 p.m., IFC) – If you find most movie awards like the Oscars to be predictable and mainstream, tune into this 26th annual indie film showcase. Andy Samberg hosts the ceremony, where films like Bernie, Compliance, Keep the Lights On and Moonrise Kingdom get recognition — not a Les Mis nom in sight.
SUNDAY FEB. 24
The Academy Awards (8:30 p.m., ABC) – Seth MacFarlane
’s schizophrenic voices hosts the 85th annual Oscars with musical performances by Barbara Streisand, Adele and Norah Jones.
Girls (9 p.m., HBO) – Hannah and Jessa roadtrip to upstate New York to reconnect with Jessa’s estranged father (Ben Mendelsohn), his girlfriend (Rosanna Arquette) and her teenaged son.
The Walking Dead (9 p.m., AMC) – Sensing his father’s fragile state, Carl asks him to step down as Ricktator; Andrea visits the prison; Tyreese’s group searches for a new safe haven. Now where could that be?
Shameless (9 p.m., Showtime) – Family Services take away the Gallagher kids, forcing Fiona to whip Frank into shape and get him to court.
CONTACT JAC KERN: email@example.com or @jackern