TV

Watch this, DVR that: The finale night dilemma

May 16, 2013 at 9:13 AM ET

Thursday is a big night for TV thanks to the series finale of "The Office," the season finale of "The Big Bang Theory" and more.
NBC, CBS
Thursday is a big night for TV thanks to the series finale of "The Office," the season finale of "The Big Bang Theory" and more.

Thursday is a big night for boob tube fans. Some of TV's top shows are bowing out for the season, and one long-running hit is saying so long for good.

But with a jam-packed prime-time lineup, choices have to be made. What's worth watching in real time? What can wait for later?

Let's take a closer look!

(Note: The times listed below reflect Eastern and Pacific zones. For Central and Mountain times, it's all an hour earlier.)

For the 8 o'clock hour, if you're a fan of "American Idol," the choice is easy. Failure to watch the finalists face off is almost like asking for spoilers. You're sure to see the winner's name the second you check Facebook or hear all about it when you bump into to a fellow fan.

Prefer dramas? Well, then it's "Vampire Diaries" for you.

But if you’re a laugh lover, it's truly a tough choice. You've got the "The Office," kicking off its series finale night with a one-hour retrospective, versus "The Big Bang Theory," with a season finale that could see a major shakeup for the core cast.

In that battle, "The Big Bang Theory" wins -- watch that, and DVR the look back at the gang from Dunder Mifflin.

At 9, there's no competition where comedies are concerned. It's all about "The Office" sendoff, which is sure to be the stuff of water-cooler chatter the next morning.

Reality fans will just be hunkering down for yet another hour of "American Idol."

Here, the question is all about drama -- do you watch the latest tragedy to strike "Grey's Anatomy" as it happens? Or do you tune in to the freshman wrap up of "Elementary"? Then again, there's "Beauty & the Beast."

This one goes to "Grey's," where show creator Shonda Rhimes always delivers a finale full of jaw-droppers. Check out "Elementary" when time allows (or logic dictates). As for "B&B," well … if there's still room on the DVR, see what you can do.

At 10, drama addicts can just kick back and enjoy the season ender of "Scandal" (while your DVR does all the work where the second hour of "Elementary" is concerned).

Those who are in it for laughs can enjoy the last 15 minutes (ever!) of "The Office."

We've given you our picks, and you've told us which shows just can't wait inthe surveys above. Now hit our comments section to share what programs you think are really worth the space on your DVR.

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