Welcome back to #SetTheVCR…where we have a She-Hulk.
Monday, August 15
Father Stu (Prime Video Canada)
Follows the life of Father Stuart Long, a boxer-turned-priest who inspired countless people during his journey from self-destruction to redemption.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: LEGACY: THE TRUE STORY OF THE LA LAKERS: LIMITED SERIES (ANYTIME / HULU & DISNEY+ CANADA)
Legacy captures the remarkable rise and unprecedented success of one of the most dominant and iconic franchises in professional sports.
The timing is terrible as this docuseries follows Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty a much maligned fictional account of the Showtime Lakers. I often prefer documentaries over biopics; a documentary is forced to be honest. This 10-part documentary series (released weekly!) chronicles the shaky ground of the earlier Lakers; pre-Magic it wasn’t a certainty the NBA would last…or like even be around tomorrow. From there right to Kobe and all the famous fans…and famous feuds, trades, overcoming on-court obstacles, the Buss family and yes…winning so many championships it’s all covered. Every sports league has royalty; for MLB it’s the Yankees…for the NBA it’s the Lakers (don’t tell the Celtics I said that!) and this is their epic saga. The Lakers got a Last Dance; this is a slam dunk recommendation.
Tuesday, August 16
Tenet (Anytime / Netflix Canada)
Armed with only one word, Tenet, and fighting for the survival of the entire world, a Protagonist journeys through a twilight world of international espionage on a mission that will unfold in something beyond real time.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: UNTOLD: VOLUME 2 (ANYTIME / NETFLIX)
Untold: Volume 2 is a four-week docuseries event that once again brings fresh eyes to epic tales from the wide world of sports.
Season 2 of Netflix’s Untold kicks off today; this is Netflix’s 30 for 30; their sports documentaries section. Today’s Untold episode is The Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist: in 2 parts (both released today). Manti Te’o was playing football for Notre Dame; he was on track for the NFL. Only problem was his girlfriend, Stanford University student Lennay Kekua, had been injured in a car accident, and was discovered during her treatment to have leukemia. Actually…Lennay Kekua doesn’t exist. Was Manti Te’o being catfished or was he in on the hoax? Untold: The Girlfriend Who Didn’t Exist will attempt to sort the facts and the fictions. Programming Note: Next week’s Untold is The Rise and Fall of AND1. Oh, yo…I cannot wait.
Wednesday, August 17
The Old Man: Season 1 (Anytime / Disney+ Star)
Based on the bestselling novel of the same name by Thomas Perry, The Old Man centers on Dan Chase (Jeff Bridges), who absconded from the CIA decades ago and has been living off the grid since.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: Viagra: The Little Blue Pill That Changed the World (Discovery+ Original)
The drug that wrote the playbook of Big Pharma and changed sex forever…
For a Viagra documentary you’d expect me to make the obvious puns but I’d be a dick if I did that. Heh. Least you understand why I posted this on Hump Day. I’ll skip the “hard” sell and leave you with the trailer. “U Up?” for a 3 part Viagra docuseries?
Thursday, August 18
Look Both Ways (Anytime / Netflix)
On the night of her college graduation, Natalie’s life splits into parallel realities after she takes a pregnancy test. What will life and love bring?
SAMMY SUGGESTION: SHE-HULK: ATTORNEY AT LAW: SEASON 1 (ANYTIME / DISNEY+)
The new comedy series stars Tatiana Maslany as She-Hulk/Jennifer Walters, a lawyer who specializes in superhuman-oriented legal cases in the MUC.
The next Marvel TV show following Moon Knight and Ms. Marvel. She-Hulk is Jennifer Walters, a lawyer who specializes in superhuman-oriented legal cases in the MCU. “Hi my name is She-Hulk…I’m looking for viewers who like law shows mixed with superhero drama. My hobbies include wearing spandex and breaking the 4th wall…and even though I have a totally famous cousin; I want to be liked for me…for who I am and the woman I am becoming.” Captain Kirk is a fan of hot green girls; I’ve no doubt he’ll eagerly recommend this MCU TV show.
Friday, August 19
Mometu (Anytime / Mometu)
A new streamer! Currently its nerd offerings include Adventures of Captain Marvel (1941) and Batman (1943).
SAMMY SUGGESTION: ECHOES: LIMITED SERIES (ANYTIME / NETFLIX)
Identical twins Leni and Gina have secretly swapped lives since they were children. But their world is thrown into disarray when one sister goes missing.
Echoes is basically Parent Trap meets Basic Instinct. The 7 episode limited series focuses on all the dark secrets that are unearthed when one of the twins goes missing; thus creating a double-edged sword. The twins share two homes, two husbands, and a child but that manipulative double vision choreography is unmasked and brought to light when one of the twins goes missing…causing double trouble. True crime without the true part yet with enough intrigue I’m sure Netflix viewers will say make mine a double as they untangle this double whammy.
Saturday, August 20
Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (Anytime / Crave)
Sean Anderson partners with his mom’s husband on a mission to find his grandfather, who is thought to be missing on a mythical island.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE UNDECLARED WAR (ANYTIME / PEACOCK)
Set in 2024, The Undeclared War tracks a leading team of analysts buried in the heart of GCHQ, secretly working to ward off a series of cyber-attacks on the UK in the run up to a general election.
Simon Pegg stars in this cyber thriller: You Got Mail meets…Sneakers I guess? In 2016 the Russian government interfered in the American presidential election with the goals of harming Hillary Clinton’s campaign, boosting Donald Trump’s candidacy, and increasing political and social discord in the misnamed United States. They clearly succeeded. This ain’t your grandfather’s war; the vets are not fortified seniors with shaky hands and a blanket draped across their laps. It’s nerds armed with a keyboard. And this “cold war” is happening in the UK as they declare cyber war on Putin. It’s all reminiscent of Sean Connery’s Untouchables classic quote: “You wanna know how to get Capone? They pull a knife, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue. That’s the Chicago way! And that’s how you get Capone. Now do you want to do that? Are you ready to do that? I’m offering you a deal. Do you want this deal?” Replace Capone with Putin, replace knife with a keyboard and you got The Undeclared War.
Sunday, August 21
House of the Dragon: Season 1 (9 p.m. / HBO)
Based on George R.R. Martin’s Fire & Blood, the series, set 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones, tells the story of House Targaryen.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: CNN ORIGINALS HUB (ANYTIME / DISCOVERY+)
Subscribers will be able to enjoy over 800 episodes of current and legacy programming from the CNN Original Series and HLN Original Series library.
When CNN+ was abruptly shut down on April 28, 2022 I was yo…what about the CNN Originals?! Like Disney+ organizes hubs by popular IP: Star Wars, Marvel etc. Discovery+ has now added a CNN Originals Hub. “Subscribers can access a curated selection of library CNN content through a new hub featuring premium programming from the network’s prestige brands: CNN Original Series, CNN Films, and HLN Original Series.” Here’s some recommendations you’ve seen in this space before: The History of Comedy, The History of the Sitcom and whatever CNN Films they’re offering. I’ve seen many CNN Films; like ESPN’s 30 for 30s there is some quality programming. After all aren’t you on this streamer to “Discovery?”
Sammy Younan is the affable host of My Summer Lair: think NPR’s Fresh Air meets Kevin Smith: interviews & impressions on Pop Culture.