This week stated with my watching the Super Bowl, which I imagine will be the last football game that I ever pay attention to in my life. (Seriously, football’s depressing. I hate it when the losing team starts crying.) It’s ending with my thoroughly disgusted by the Olympic Games. This has not been a great week for sporting events. Except, of course, for karate. I finally watched the fourth season of Cobra Kai. Miyagi Fang is definitely the philosophy to follow.
Anyway, here’s what I watched this week:
Allo Allo (Sunday Night, PBS)
An odd episode. Having stolen several bars of Gold from the Germans, Rene hid the gold in his cuckoo clock, which led to the clock making a weird noise every few minute but, for some reason, no one but Rene ever seemed to notice. Somehow, this led to Rene and his staff disguising themselves as a musical group so that they could infiltrate the general’s chateau and search for the stolen painting, as well as the famous Enigma machine which, if smuggled out of France, would give the British the ability to translate Germany’s secret code. Eventually, Crabtree sang a song in his mangled version of French. This was silly humor that I could appreciate.
The Amazing Race (Wednesday Night, CBS)
I wrote about the latest episode of The Amazing Race here! We’re down to the top four now. Somehow, Arun and Natalia have survived. This has been a weird season because of the COVID lockdowns and a few really strong teams were forced to drop out of the race. As a result, Kim & Penn have pretty much dominated things, despite neither one having much of a personality. I have a feeling this will continue through the finale.
Celebrity Big Brother (CBS and Paramount Plus)
I wrote about Celebrity Big Brother over at the Big Brother Blog. Celebrity Big Brother is almost over and, to be honest, I won’t miss it.
Cobra Kai (Netflix)
On Tuesday night, Jeff and I finally got a chance to start in on season 4 of Cobra Kai. We watched the first three episodes of the season and we were both immediately sucked back into the hyperemotional and somewhat silly, yet always affecting world of Cobra Kai. My heart broke for Kenny, the new kid who found himself being bullied by Daniel’s son and I was worried when I saw that Kenny was being drawn towards the Cobra Kai dojo. I enjoyed Thomas Ian Griffith’s surprisingly contemplative performance as Terry Silver and his explanation that his over-the-top behavior in Karate Kid III was due to a cocaine addiction. (Really, it’s the only explanation that makes sense.) I enjoyed the complex portrayals of characters like Robby and Torry. And, of course, I loved the uneasy friendship of Johnny Lawrence and Daniel LaRusso.
We watched the next three episodes on Wednesday. Terry confronted Daniel! Daniel and Johnny fought to a draw! The Karate tournament changed their rules! Johnny returned to his old high school and creeped out the entire track team! It was all good. I liked the fact that Cobra Kai embraces both the silliness of the later Karate Kid films while also managing to sneak in some truly touching moments. The show manages to maintain an almost perfect balance between satire and drama.
We watched episode 7 and 8 on Thursday. Daniel learned that his son was a bully and Kenny learned how to take advantage of his opponent’s overconfidence. This was followed by the return of Paul Walter Hauser’s Stingray, who attempted to rejoin Cobra Kai and eventually ended up getting beaten up by Terry Silver for his trouble. The school held their prom, Johnny and Carmen revealed their relationship to Miguel, and Robby and Torry got to show off their dance moves!
Early Saturday morning, we watched the final two episodes of the 4th season of Cobra Kai. The All-Valley Tournament dominated both episodes, with Johnny and Daniel making peace, Robby realizing that the Cobra Kai way was not his way, Miguel leaving to find his father, and Torry winning a fixed match against Sam. In the end, Terry framed Kreese for beating up Stingray. Kreese was taken to prison while Daniel realized that he would have to go against his promise to abandon Miyagi Do (or Miyagi Fang as it was renamed during the tournament) if he was going to stop Cobra Kai. It was an exciting conclusion, full of drama, tears, and some enjoyable self-parody. Bring on season 5!
King of the Hill (Weekday Afternoon, FXX)
I watched a few episodes on Tuesday afternoon. Joseph was recruited by a private school and Dale nearly had to fake his death to get out of a financial debt. (This happened quite frequently with Dale). Peggy had a memorable birthday party on train. This was followed by one of my favorite episodes, the one in which Hank accidentally stole a man’s wallet and the man interpreted Hank’s efforts to return it as being Hank threatening him. (At the same time this was going on, Dale found himself working at the show’s version of Hooter’s. Dale had applied for a job, expecting to be turned down because he was a skinny, bald guy. Dale figured he could then sue the restaurant. The restaurant’s manager decided to call his bluff.) This was followed by Hank getting scared by a bat hanging out in his garage, Louanne’s father returning from the oil rig (which, it turned out, was actually federal prison), and Bill finding himself temporarily confined to a wheelchair.
King of the Hill was a good show, though I’m biased because the show is based on my hometown and it’s all about Texas. A part of me does worry about the proposed revival, just because I don’t know if I’m prepared to hear what Hank thinks of twitter. If there is a revival, they better give Boomhauer a podcast.
Inventing Anna (Netflix)
Starring Anna Chlumsky and Julia Garner, Inventing Anna is a limited series about Anna Delvey, a Russian con artist who managed to fool some of the leading members of New York high society. Julia Garner plays Anna while Anna Chlumsky plays a fictionalized version of the reporter who interviewed Anna during her trial.
I watched the first two episodes on Thursday. From the minute I saw the Shondaland logo, I knew what I was getting into. The first two episodes were occasionally intriguing but largely superficial, with no consistent tone and too many superfluous scenes. Julia Garner gave a good performance as Anna, though, smirking her way through the interview and intentionally changing up her accent in order to keep everyone off-balance.
The Office (All week, Comedy Central)
On Saturday afternoon, I rewatched The Michael Scott Paper Company arc. I loved Pam trying to establish an identity outside of answering the phones at Dunder Mifflin, Jim trying to play soccer and Michael unsuccessfully trying to convince his grandmother to invest in his company. It’s kind of unfortunate that Pam turned out to be terrible at sales but I could relate. I doubt I could sell paper either. I’m stunned that anyone on The Office was able to make a career out of it.
Open All Hours (Sunday Night, PBS)
Granville shot a man just to watch him die. Arkwright was too busy pining for Nurse Gladys Emmnauel to notice.
Pam and Tommy (Hulu)
Pam and Tommy is one Nathan Lane cameo away from turning into a Ryan Murphy production. I wrote about the latest episode here.
Silk Stalkings (Tubi)
On Monday morning, I got back to binging Silk Stalkings on Tubi. Though I hadn’t really been keeping track up until this week, a quick check with Wikipedia confirmed that I am currently watching episodes from the second season of the show. There’s 8 seasons in total so I’ve still got quite a bit to watch as far as this stylish and enjoyably silly series is concerned.
Anyway, the first episode that I watched on Monday was called Scorpio Killer. I’m a Scorpio so I appreciated the title! The show dealt with a man who murdered his mistress’s husband. It was a fun episode. The thing I like about Chris and Rita is, as played by Rob Estes and Mitzi Kapture, they seemed to be aware that they were characters in a somewhat sordid television series and, as such, they never had any problem winking at their audience and basically saying, “Can you believe this plot?” This was followed by an episode in which Chris and Rita investigated the death of a tennis pro’s stepfather. It featured a lot of slow motion tennis action and overheated locker room talk.
On Tuesday, I got things started with an episode in which Chris and Rita investigated a murder that occurred at a rather tacky beauty pageant. They solved the case but the highlight of the show was Rita’s attempts to buy fish for her aquarium. Needless to say, Chis was convinced that all of Rita’s fish were going to die and Chris was probably right since the aquarium was nowhere to be seen during the next episode. That episode found Chris and Rita investigating a murder that was connected to a high-profile divorce. It was a typical Chris-and-Rita-Smirk-At-Dumb-Rich-People episode. Seriously, don’t commit a murder in Palm Springs because Chris and Rita will definitely judge you.
On Thursday, I started off with a pretty good episode called Jasmine. Directed by Rob Estes, Jasmine featured Rita investigating a decades-old cold case and having plenty of surreal dreams in the process. Of course, the main reason Rita was investigating the case was to help her deal with the guilt that she felt after the murder of one of her friends. It was a well-directed episode and also well-acted by Mitzi Kapture. The next episode was an enjoyably trashy one, in which Chris and Rita tracked down a cocky teenager who was seducing both his classmates and their stepmothers.
Silk Stalking is a lot of fun. I like forward to continuing the binge next week.
Super Bowl (Sunday Night, NBC)
The Super Bowl? Does anyone remember the Super Bowl? It was played last Sunday and …. well, someone won. I don’t remember who won. I watched it for the commercials, which kind of disappointed me this year.
Super Bowl Pre-Show (Sunday Afternoon, NBC)
Yes, I even watched the big show before the game, just in case they showed any interesting commercials. They didn’t but it was still kind of nice to see how excited everyone was before the game started. I don’t know if it was really necessary to include an interview with President Biden, though. That gave the whole thing kind of a weird feel. Like why do we need the President’s permission to enjoy the game? At least he didn’t do that creepy whispering thing.
The Winter Games (All Week, Every Channel)
On Sunday morning, as I got ready for a day of watching Super Bowl commercials, I watched a bit of NBC’s coverage of the games. It was a little bit of skiing with some speed skating and some figure skating tossed in as well. I didn’t really pay that much attention.
On Wednesday night, I watched the USA take on Canada in hockey. Usually, when it comes to hockey, I support Canada because I know hockey is an important part of Canadian culture. This year, I was Team USA because Justin Trudeau annoys me. Canada still won, though, so I guess my cheering powers were not as powerful as I thought they were.
On Thursday night, I watched some skiing and then I watched the figure skating, which has been quite controversial this year. What I saw pretty much turned me off of watching any more of the Beijing Games. Though I didn’t agree with the decision to let her skate, I still felt bad for Kamila Valieva, the Russian skater who has essentially been villainized due to doping allegations. No one should be put under that type of pressure and scrutiny when they’re only 15 years old, especially when it’s quite probable that any drugs that she took were forced on her by the adults who are supposed to be looking out for her best interests. Not surprisingly, given all the stress she was under, Kamila did not do as well as she had done in the past. She ended up finishing in fourth place and started crying. This, of course, overshadowed the accomplishments of the talented women who did win medals but what really struck me was that none of the members of Kamila’s coaching entourage — the people who should have been acting as her “support team” — appears to offer any words of comfort or encouragement. (Later, I learned that her coach had demanded to know, “Why did you give up!?”) And we wonder why so many young athletes burn themselves out or grow up to have personal troubles once they can no longer compete. Meanwhile, the skater who came in second screamed in anger over having to settle for a silver medal while the gold medal winner sat alone, holding a teddy bear. It was not one of the better moments of the Winter Games. In fact, it was so disturbing to watch that it pretty much turned me off of the idea of watching what little was left of the Olympics.