After 12 seasons and counting, "Deadliest Catch" gets its own spin-off.

"Deadliest Catch: Dungeon Cove" (9 p.m., Discovery, TV-14) follows four families striving to make a living and stay alive while hunting down Dungeness crab in a dangerous stretch of Oregon coastline.

- The five-part series "Taking Fire" (10 p.m., Discovery) follows American soldiers patrolling dangerous areas of Afghanistan, featuring real combat footage captured by helmet cameras and other handheld devices.

- With students back in school, "Frontline" (10 p.m., PBS, check local listings) devotes two segments to education.

"A Subprime Education" examines growing concern about the multi-billion-dollar private college industry.

While institutions sell themselves as incubators of innovative education and escalators to success, in too many cases, for-profit schools have merely collected tuition and left students saddled with crippling debt without providing a useful degree.

And much of the funding for these so-called universities comes from government-backed loans.

Some have compared their fraudulent and predatory practices to that of shady banks during the subprime lending bubble that contributed to the crash of 2008.

"Schools" have resorted to aggressive recruiting, enrolling homeless people and drug addicts, just to keep the "tuition" flowing.

A second segment, "The Education of Omarina" follows up on a 2012 report on efforts to reduce the high school dropout rate and tells the story of a single student, Omarina Cabrera, and her path from a troubled Bronx middle school to college.

- Debuting tonight, the eight-part series "The Contenders: 16 for 16" (8 p.m., PBS, check local listings) reviews 50 years of presidential politics and recalls distinctive campaigns, some well known and others all but forgotten.

Tonight's "contenders" include Brooklyn Rep. Shirley Chisholm, who ran in 1972, when the thought of a black person or woman becoming a major party's nominee seemed beyond fantasy.

Another segment explores Arizona Sen. John McCain's first failed effort, his 2000 "Straight Talk" express campaign that appeared to charm the press corps before running into the buzz saw of power politics.

Next week, "Contenders" examines the against-the-grain races of Howard Dean (2004) and Pat Buchanan (1992 and '96).

TV-themed DVDs available today include "Suspects, Series 3 and 4."

Tonight's other highlights

- The top 10 compete on "America's Got Talent" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).

- Mo Collins and Nicole Sullivan guest-star on "MADtv" (9 p.m., CW, TV-14).

- A trip to Thailand concludes "Better Late Than Never" (10 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

- Donna and Gordon enjoy a staycation on "Halt and Catch Fire" (10 p.m., AMC, TV-14).

- Boulder police keep the focus on the family on part two of "JonBenet: An American Murder Mystery" (10 p.m., ID, TV-14).

- Earn goes out on a date without much in his wallet on "Atlanta" (10 p.m., FX, TV-MA).

Cult choice

- Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy star in the 1933 comedy "Sons of the Desert" (9 p.m., TCM).

Series notes

Julie Chen hosts "Big Brother" (8 p.m., CBS, TV-14) ... Holt needs help on "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" (8 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14) ... On two episodes of "The Middle" (ABC, r, TV-PG), a sneaky party (8 p.m.), maternal meddling (8:30 p.m.) ... Facing Zoom on "The Flash" (8 p.m., CW, r, TV-PG) ... Schmidt goes above and beyond on "New Girl" (8:30 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14).

Interagency cooperation on "NCIS" (9 p.m., CBS, r, TV-14) ... Framed for murder on "Lucifer" (9 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14) ... Family news on "Fresh Off the Boat" (9 p.m., ABC, r, TV-PG) ... Breaking rules on "The Real O'Neals" (9:30 p.m., ABC, r, TV-PG) ... Missing explosives on "NCIS: New Orleans" (10 p.m., CBS, r, TV-14) ... A battle with Hive on "Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." (10 p.m., ABC, r, TV-14)

Late night

Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Millie Bobby Brown and the Head and the Heart are booked on "The Late Show With Stephen Colbert" (11:35 p.m., CBS) ... Jimmy Fallon welcomes Shailene Woodley, Carol Burnett, Jason Aldean and Wayne Newton on "The Tonight Show" (11:35 p.m., NBC) ... Bill Hader, Sarah Jones, Test Pattern and Matt Garstka visit "Late Night With Seth Meyers" (12:35 a.m., NBC) ... Donald Glover, Jimmy Johnson and Grouplove appear on "The Late Late Show With James Corden" (12:35 a.m., CBS).

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