It’s the Fall and for all the changes to our TV landscape TV is heating up with new returns and new shows. The more things change…right?
Sunday, September 20
Sammy Suggestion: The Perks of Being a Wallflower (Anytime / Crave)
The boring description reads: “Charlie, a 15-year-old introvert, enters high school and is nervous about his new life. When he befriends his seniors, he learns to cope with his friend’s suicide and his tumultuous past.” Yeah whatever: this movie will fill the John Hughes hole in your heart. Some excellent teen angst. Everybody in this movie is broken.
Monday, September 21
Sammy Suggestion: Inherent Good (Anytime / InherentGood.com)
Comedian Trae Crowder introduced himself into our lives as the “Liberal Redneck” making a series of videos with his natural Jeff Foxworthy twang. Since those 2016 videos he’s written a book; done a stand up comedy tour and now he’s providing the ah…redneck take on UBI. Certainly, as the pandemic ravages, the economy (and “all y’all”) a Universal Basic Income is one of the most effective antidotes but what does that mean exactly? Teaming up with recent Presidential candidate Andrew Yang (a popular UBI Face) they set out to understand wealth inequality and how impressively beneficial giving out cash with no strings attached can be for so many individuals. The 60 minute documentary can be enjoyed on their website for free (mirroring UBI cash it comes with no strings attached) and is directed by Steve Borst (a name some might recognize…he’s written 20 episodes of Teen Titans Go! Also fun if you’re not up for a Monday doc about free money).
Tuesday, September 22
Sammy Suggestion: The Playbook (Anytime / Netflix)
So this is awkward. Initially, I was all hype to see this sports documentary with Jill Ellis (I dunno who that is) and Doc Rivers. Yet the Clippers coach Doc Rivers has lost 3 NBA Playoff series when leading 3-1 in his coaching career. 2003 Magic to Pistons, 2015 Clippers to Rockets, and just last week a fresh loss: 2020 Clippers to Nuggets. I dunno how to square this. Is Doc Rivers overrated? Is he lucky?! Perhaps this will provide some context but I gotta say blowing 3…not 1 but 3-1 leads is not good. There’s no spin when ya win.
Wednesday, September 23
Sammy Suggestion: Console Wars (Anytime / CBS All Access)
Growing up we survived The Cola Wars: Coke vs Pepsi. (Team Coke!). However, that was not the only corporate war we were collateral damage in: there was also The Console Wars. Sega, this wonderfully rogue arcade company, decided to take on Nintendo. Yup. Misfits vs Management a classic inspiring fable. Adapted from Blake Harris’s most excellent and highly recommended 2014 book Console Wars is about the home video game battle that ended up defining a generation (for real…no hyperbole on that.We got scars from this fight!). Originally set to debut back at SXSW Film Festival in March though that festival became one of the first major dominoes to fall as we began shutting down society in March and April. (I prefer a documentary however Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg have also bought the rights of Blake Harris’ book (for whom they wrote the introduction!) with the intention of making a feature film or perhaps a limited TV series. I’m not sure what the status of that project is since so many are in limbo due to the pandemic and budgets etc. Still for now the documentary should be good fun.)
Thursday, September 24
Sammy Suggestion: The Chef Show: Volume 4 (Anytime / Netflix)
Yesterday I wrote about The Console Wars. Today the celebrity chef cooking show is another form of that modern corporate warfare: having a cooking show has become a rite of celebrity passage lately. Jon Favreau and Roy Choi dish a second season of their culinary series The Chef Show based on Favreau’s Chef movie. (Which is good. Track that down if you get a chance it’s tasty.)
Friday, September 25
Sammy Suggestion: Utopia (Anytime / Amazon Prime)
“young comic-book fans are tasked with saving the world.” What could go wrong? I’m sure this Amazon Prime tv show is ironically entitled Utopia.
Saturday, September 26
Sammy Suggestion: Goodfellas: Behind Closed Doors (8 p.m. / Reelz)
I recently came to the conclusion that I prefer Goodfellas over Godfather. Now obviously they are both cinematic masterpieces but my conclusion is about recognizing my style and knowing my vibe: the darkness and violence of Goodfellas is more my jam. I suppose there is a sort of litmus test in all of this…perhaps we can also include the cartoonish Scarface? That’s somebody’s jam for true. In this TV special “Natalie Morales takes a look behind the scenes of this blockbuster from its transformation from a New York Times best-selling book” to a compelling feature film. “Behind Closed Doors features new interviews with actors Paul Sorvino and Christopher “Kid Henry Hill” Serrone, as well as Goodfellas’ writer, Academy award-winning producer and interviews with the star-studded cast over the last three decades.” And if this does not “amuse you” you can always just watch the movie.