We have new shows and old sarcasm! Aren’t you glad you came? We are. Welcome to #SetTheVCR.
Sunday, May 17
The Simpsons (8 p.m. / Fox)
Hightown: Season 1 (8 p.m. / Starz)
Snowpiercer: Season 1 (9 p.m. / TNT in the US (Netflix for global viewers))
Scandalous: The Untold Story of the National Enquirer (10 p.m. / CNN)
Sammy Suggestion: The Last Dance (9 p.m. & 10 p.m. / ESPN)
It’s…all over. I need a minute. I promised myself I wasn’t gonna cry. Episode 9 and 10 conclude The Last Dance. I’m sorry. I…yeah. All that bellyaching nostalgia following the Beastie Boys Story and The Last Dance is…for now: over. What a strange time we’ve lived through. What a strange time we’re living through.
Monday, May 18
Penn & Teller: Try This at Home (8 p.m. / CW)
Created Equal: Clarence Thomas in His Own Words (9 p.m. / PBS)
Sammy Suggestion: Blackballed: Season 1 (Anytime / Quibi)
On April 25, 2014 recordings of Donald Sterling conversations were released and ignited reams of moral condemnation clickbait. (We need a word for people who just found out something has always been happening. ESPN Magazine named the Clippers the worst franchise in professional sports in 2009. Clipper fans (there aren’t many) were wealthy with stories and frustrations since Sterling took ownership in 1981. This wasn’t news this was status quo.) However, timing is crucial and those tapes surfaced during the NBA Playoffs the Association’s high profile ratings event. (Why did we focus on the racism on the tapes but not how the tapes were recorded? I’m highly uncomfortable with the precedent this case set and what it means for us moving forward.) This documentary focuses on the impact of the Clipper players as they struggled with a response while preparing to face the Warriors.
Tuesday, May 19
Stargirl: Season 1 (8 p.m. / CW) (Following its DC Universe debut on May 18)
After the Dance with Stephen A. Smith: A SportsCenter Special (8 p.m. / ABC)
Sammy Suggestion: Patton Oswalt: I Love Everything (Anytime / Netflix)
It’s a Patton Oswalt comedy special! This is a follow up to Annihilation, his sad and sharp special about his life following his wife’s passing. (I know that doesn’t sound funny but what’s that line about comedy is tragedy and time?) Anyways he is older―he is going to tell us what turning 50 is like and I’m sure there will be a Star Wars reference or two. It’s not like you don’t most evenings either with nerds or doing something nerdy. Right?
Wednesday, May 20
Sammy Suggestion: The Stranger: Episode 1 (Anytime / See Below)
So Quibi was pitched as tv shows and movies in 10 minutes or less. Yet when you watch it you quickly realize it’s just revolving around theoretical commercial breaks. Like when a network tv show ends up on Netflix. They still fade out every 10 minutes or because those commercial breaks were written into the writing. Quibi is struggling its co-creator Jeffrey Katzenberg rightly blamed the pandemic. People are barely commuting so short form is not going to do well right now. Still to show us what we’ve been missing Quibi has released full episodes of some of their shows. Here is the first full episode of The Stranger. What are your thoughts? Hooked? Eh? Hard Pass? On YouTube, you can view the first episodes of Dummy and Most Dangerous Game (awful title!).
Thursday, May 21
Sammy Suggestion: BookTube — Read With Me (Anytime / YouTube)
YouTube has stepped up its coronavirus programming for May and June with a variety of original programming, docs, and specials. Their monthly book club series lazily branded as BookTube is offering a mental health-focused episode. The Read With Me episode features Melinda Gates, John Grisham, James Patterson, Elizabeth Gilbert, Nicholas Sparks, Elaine Welteroth, and many more sharing their current book recommendations. Expect another BookTube special in June (date has yet to be confirmed). (As an added #SetTheVCR bonus check out Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s “Create Together #WithMe is a new series about making art and community out of uncertain times— and we’re inviting you to take part.” which debuted on May 18. So even though this post is about BookTube I’m a go ahead and share the Gordon-Levitt trailer just because dude was so good in Inception. (They never left the dreamworld!!)
Friday, May 22
Control Z (Anytime / Netflix)
Homecoming: Season 2 (Anytime / Amazon Prime)
Sammy Suggestion: Joker (Anytime / Crave)
I wrote about this last week. Then Joker debuted on HBO and today it debuts on Crave so Canadians can put on a happy face. Suddenly Canadians everywhere will get those 2019 NYC staircase memes. Oooooh!
Saturday, May 23
Sammy Suggestion: Ready or Not (Anytime / HBO or Crave)
I really wanted to see Ready or Not back in the cinema (Samara Weaving is coming along she was darkly funny in Mayhem). It’s Die Hard mashed with The Purge. Great way to spend a Saturday night.