Yes, I watched a lot this week. Here’s some thoughts:
Allo Allo (Monday Morning, PBS)
Rene attempted to abandon his wife and his café so that he could elope with Yvette but Michelle had one “last” mission for him. It involved smuggling the Enigma machine to the British via the sewer system and, needless to say, it involved a lot of digging. It made me laugh, that’s what is important.
The Amazing Race (Wednesday Night, CBS)
You can read my thoughts on the finale here! I wasn’t particularly happy about who won but that’s the way it goes sometimes.
American Idol (Sunday Night, ABC)
I am as stunned as anyone by the fact that American Idol still exists. I stopped caring about the show a lifetime ago but I still watched the premiere of the latest season on Sunday because I was cleaning around the house and I thought it would make for acceptable background nose. I love Katy Perry but the rest of the judges are pretty dull. No one’s willing to be as mean as Simon Cowell was back in the day. The whole thing is just too damn positive.
The Bachelor (Monday Night, ABC)
I haven’t really been keeping up with this season but I did watch Monday’s episode, just to see if the Claytonbot had developed any sort of individual personality over the past few weeks. He has not but apparently, everyone can still see themselves falling in love with him and spending the rest of their life with him.
Bar Rescue (Friday Morning, Paramount)
It had been a while since I watched Bar Rescue so I watched the Friday morning bloc of reruns. I guess, due to the fact that I don’t drink, I always find it amusing how worked up everyone on the show gets over the mismanaged bars. Whenever Taffer starts to yell about a bartender not knowing how to make a certain cocktail, I’m always like, “Well, can’t you just order something else?”
Couples Court With The Cutlers (Sunday Afternoon, OWN TV)
I had forgotten this show existed but when I stumbled across it on Sunday, I have to admit that I immediately got sucked into the case of Bacon vs. Bacon and the question of whether or not Mrs. Bacon was cheating on Mr. Bacon. They even brought in a cybersecurity expert to go through Mrs. Bacon’s phone and it was discovered that she was using an app to send out secret text messages! Mrs. Bacon claimed she was talking to other men but not actually cheating with them. However, “licensed polygraph examiner Kendall Shull,” (as he’s called in every single episode) determined that she was cheating. Mr. Bacon walked out on her husband while the audience gasped. Poor Mr. Bacon! I later looked this episode up on the imdb and I discovered that it was 5 years old so I can only imagine how the Bacons feel whenever they come across it playing on TV.
Court Cam (Wednesday, A&E)
To be honest, I thought this show had been canceled but, on Wednesday, I discovered that it still exists and it’s going strong. Featuring actual court footage and breathlessly narrated by Dan Abrams, Court Cam is the equivalent of true crime junk food. I watched about four episodes. Judges yelled. Defendants yelled. The bailiffs were ready to spring into action. The lawyers were usually smart enough to stay out of the way.
The Dropout (Hulu)
Full House (Sunday Afternoon, MeTV)
Uncle Jesse was upset that he wasn’t getting to spend as much time with his cool friends as he wanted to because he was always spending all of his time taking care of Danny’s children. So, Jesse went skiing with his old friends but they all turned out to be just as dorky as Joey and Danny so I kind of think Jesse was fooling himself as far as the old gang was concerned. Jesse’s life didn’t get any better in the episode that followed, as he was forced to take a job as an Elvis impersonator to pay the bills. Poor Jesse! At least he had adequate hair.
Inventing Anna (Netflix)
I watched episodes 3, 4, and 5 of Inventing Anna early Monday morning. They didn’t do too much for me, largely because Vivian isn’t a very interesting character and every minute that we have to spend listening to her whine about her career is a minute that we’d rather be spending with Anna and her wealthy friends. This show makes a lot more sense once you know that the journalist upon whom Vivian Kent is based is also one of the producers. She made the mistake of thinking she was the star of the story.
King of the Hill (Hulu and FXX)
On Sunday morning, I watched three episodes of King of the Hill on Hulu. The first featured the possibility of Bobby being a reincarnated holy man. The second found Peggy getting involved with a pyramid scheme. (“No, it’s a triangle.”) And the third featured Hank getting a haircut from Bill and then demanding that the Army charge him for it. It turns out that it costs $900 for the army to give a man a haircut.
I watched two episodes of FXX on Wednesday. One episode featured Hank becoming the substitute shop teacher and teaching the kids how to fix things. Unfortunately, he had the kids bring tools from home and that got him fired. I love this episode, largely because of the wonderful voice over work of the late Dennis Burkley, who played Principal Moss. This was followed by Aisle 8A, in which Connie spent a memorable few days with the Hills and Hank had to find the courage to take a trip down Aisle 8A.
Law & Order (Thursday Night, NBC)
I watched the latest episode of Law & Order to see if McCoy had gotten around to firing his ludicrously idealistic Executive D.A. yet. He had not.
This week’s episode was based on the relationship of Elizabeth Holmes and Sunny Balwani so it was interesting to watch it after having binged the first three episodes of The Dropout. It was an okay episode, even if it still sometimes seemed to be trying a bit too hard. The Law & Order revival needs to calm down a little and give the new characters (and the actors playing them) a chance to define who they are.
I kept hoping the ghost of Adam Schiff would materialize and rasp, “Take the deal….”
Law & Order: SVU (Thursday Night, NBC)
What if Joe Rogan confessed to a decades-old murder!? Well, I guess you’d have to send someone in undercover to catch him. This was not one of SVU‘s better episodes.
The Love Boat (Sunday Evening, MeTV)
On Sunday’s cruise, Kim Richards played a 13 year-old who, after putting on a good deal of makeup and taking off her glasses, could pass for a 22 year-old. Fortunately, Gopher found out the truth about her age before committing a crime. Meanwhile, Eve Plumb learned to forgive the man who she thought was her father for walking out on the family 20 years earlier. Yay! Quite a cruise.
Open All Hours (Monday Morning, PBS)
A woman wished Granville a happy birthday so Arkwright pushed Granville off of a step ladder. This is something that appeared to happen fairly frequently with Granville. He was always getting shoved off something. Poor guy.
Pam and Tommy (Hulu)
I reviewed the latest episode of Pam & Tommy here. Unfortunately, the character of Rand Gauthier has returned. I’m glad this show is almost over.
The SAG Awards (Sunday Night, TNT)
I caught the second airing of the awards. It was nice to see CODA win the award for Best Ensemble. I loved Marlee Matlin’s speech.
Secrets of Playboy (Monday Night, A&E)
This A&E docuseries is all about exposing Hugh Hefner as being kind of a creep. The episodes that I saw on Monday certainly accomplished that goal. It’s kind of amazing that, for years, Hefner was able to get away with presenting himself as being some sort of benevolent father figure when basically, he was just a jerk with a mansion and smoking jacket.
Silk Stalkings (IMDB TV)
On Wednesday, I returned to binging Silk Stalkings. I started with the 35th episode of the series, which was called Dead Weight and featured Chris and Rita investigating the murder of a businessman who was played by John O’Hurley. I was pretty sure that I had seen this episode before but no matter. It was fun and trashy and O’Hurley played his brief role like a soap opera villain come to life. The 36th episode was called Kid Stuff and it told the story of a 17 year-old prostitute who shot her older lover’s wife. The older man was a doctor who was played by the great Andrew Stevens. Even by the standards of Silk Stalkings, this was a sordid episode but that’s one of the fun things about Silk Stalkings. It may have been shameless but it also clearly wasn’t meant to be taken seriously. Later, that night, I watched the 37th episode, in which Chris and Rita investigated a shooting that was connected to a couple’s kinky sex game. That said, Chris was more concerned that Rita might accept a job offer and move to San Diego. Awwwww! No need to worry, Chris! Rita would never leave you!
Thursday, I watched Episode #38. After a murder turned out to be connected to a shady modeling company (which was actually a front for a trafficking scheme), Chris and Rita went undercover! Chris pretended to be a mobster! Rita pretended to be a model! Any episode in which Chris and Rita go undercover is guaranteed to be a gem, especially if it requires Chris to wear a red suit and talk tough. This was followed by an episode in which Chris and Rita investigated a death at a birthday party and Rita dealt with some issues from her traumatic childhood. It was actually a pretty effective episode. As silly as the mysteries on the show were, both Mitzi Kapture and Rob Estes were good actors who managed to find a sort of emotional reality amongst all the neon and lingerie.
Finally, on Friday, I watched Episode #40, “Soul Kiss.” Chris and Rita investigated what appeared to be a suicide but what was actually a murder that was connected to a tantric sex seminar. Rita was intrigued but Chris thought it was silly to suggest that he needed a seminar to learn anything new. Rob Estes and Mitzi Kapture both kind of laughed their way through this episode.
Snowpiercer (Sunday Night, TNT)
I watched Snowpiercer while waiting for the second showing of the SAG Awards to begin. Visually, it’s an impressive show and there’s a lot of actors in the cast who I like. And I also liked the movie upon which the show is based. That said, I don’t have the slightest idea what was going on in the majority of the episode.
South Park (Wednesday Night, Comedy Central)
This week, South Park not only took on Russian aggression but it also took a look at the way adults specialize in scaring and emotionally traumatizing children “for their own good.” As usually happens in a time of crisis, South Park was the only show to come across as being the least bit sensible. The new episode was followed by the “Zipline” episode from 2012. That episode was only ten years old but seemed to come from a totally different universe.
The State of the Union (Hulu)
I skipped the State of the Union address on Tuesday and I wasn’t planning on watching it at all but then I heard from several people about how weird it was so I decided to give it a watch. And yes, it was very, very weird. All of our leaders are very, very weird and there’s no point in pretending otherwise. What’s the deal with Biden’s creepy whispering thing? Can no one tell him not to do that? For that matter, most of the members of Congress appear to be deeply weird as well. As much as we Americans love watching British and Canadian lawmakers heckle their prime ministers, we’re still not used to the idea of people in Congress doing it to the president. At times, I felt like I was watching a sci-fi film in which society had moved underground.
My main impression is that this country is led by a group of very old people. Maybe we should try electing some younger people the next time we have the opportunity. Just a thought.
Talking Dead (Sunday Night, AMC)
Just like last week, Talking Dead did not feature a studio audience and, as a result, it fell somewhat flat.
The Walking Dead (Sunday Night, AMC)
I like the Commonwealth. Their Halloween looked fun and I don’t really care about the income inequality. The world’s ending. Let people enjoy themselves, Carol. I reviewed the latest episode of The Walking Dead here.
Worst Roommate Ever (Netflix)
Netflx’s latest true crime series tells the story of four terrible roommates. Three of them turned out to be murderers. The other one attempted to kill two people that we know about and the fact that both of them survived is something of a miracle. I binged this frequently fascinating but often disturbing series on Tuesday morning, before Erin and I left to the vote in the Texas primaries. The fact that this series is only five episodes long and doesn’t resort to dragging out any of the stories that it tells should really serve as a lesson for some other showrunners out there. That said, I also have to say that the final two episodes, which dealt with the nightmarish crimes of Jamison Branch, left me feeling deeply unsettled and there’s a part of me that wishes that I hadn’t watched them.