Congratulations: you survived Christmas and Boxing Day. All that’s left is New Year’s Eve. And to keep you entertained here’s some excellent #SetTheVCR recommendations.
Monday, December 27
Last Man Standing: Suge Knight and the Murders of Biggie & Tupac (Anytime / Starz)
The story of Suge Knight, the former CEO of legendary rap music label Death Row Records, recently sentenced to 28 years imprisonment for manslaughter.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: VIGIL: LIMITED SERIES (ANYTIME / PEACOCK)
The mysterious disappearance of a Scottish fishing trawler and a death on-board a Trident nuclear submarine bring the police into conflict with the Navy and British security services.
Vigil and Line of Duty are BBC’s highest-rated crime dramas this year. Vigil no doubt for offering a unique premise: the 6-part series is a police procedural of a homicide on a British nuclear submarine. Oh. Fresh. That’s not your everyday mystery. The death on the HMS Vigil was “classified” as an accidental overdose but of course…nothing is what it seems. The investigation runs on parallel tracks…one cop is embedded in the nuclear submarine still on active duty and the other is on land following up leads. Because this investigation involves Britain’s national security, I can only hope the conspiracy goes “right to the top!” If you’ve enjoyed shows like Bodyguard these are the terrific tension types of shows BBC excels at. All 6 episodes were released at once.
Tuesday, December 28
Tha God’s Honest Truth With Charlamagne tha God: Season 1 (Anytime / Crave)
Charlamagne’s Tha God’s Honest Truth debuted September 17 on Comedy Central. Today the entire first season has been added to Crave. Rooted in truth, coated in comedy and unapologetically Black, Charlamagne Tha God takes on social issues and topics permeating politics and culture.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: DAY OF THE DEAD: SEASON 1 (ANYTIME / CRAVE)
Six strangers try to survive the first 24 hours of an undead invasion.
Did you enjoy PG: Psycho Goreman on Shudder? It’s a fantastic I dunno what that is…sci-fi horror comedy thriller? Something…excellent. Steven Kostanski directed that bizarre movie and here he’s directing the first 4 of the season’s 10 episodes. Day of the Dead is a 1985 zombie movie; the third in George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead series. In the movie the zombie apocalypse has ravaged the entire world, with zombies outnumbering humans 400,000 to 1. That sucks. The TV show takes a more local approach where the dead begin to rise in Manihawken, Pennsylvania. Now six strangers must try to survive the first 24 hours of an undead invasion. The entire 10-episodes covers only that first 24 hours so that’s an intriguing premise. Steven Kostanski is more than just a director; he’s also got a makeup/special effects background so enjoy some GQ good looking zombies. Snyder’s zombies ran; Michael Jackson’s zombies danced; while Day Of The Dead is a joyful reminder that Romero’s zombies shuffle. If you failed to watch Day Of The Dead as it aired Crave has the brainsssss…to share the entire first season.
Wednesday, December 29
2021 and Done With Snoop Dogg & Kevin Hart (Anytime / Peacock)
Snoop Dogg and Kevin Hart take an unfiltered, irreverent look back at the biggest moments from 2021 in pop culture, social media, politics and sports by hilariously dissecting trending videos and interviewing a wide range of celebrity guests.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE BOOK OF BOBA FETT: SEASON 1 (ANYTIME / DISNEY+)
No longer just a hired gun, Boba Fett reinvents himself on Tatooine alongside Fennec Shand.
The enigmatic bounty hunter gets an opportunity to shine! Like W-T-Fett is going on… “Boba Fett and Fennec Shand attempt to make a name for themselves in the galaxy’s underworld by taking over the territory once controlled by Jabba the Hutt.” Basically the sci-fi Dog the Bounty Hunter provides “unFETTered access: a day in the life of a guy named Boba. While the Star Wars movies have struggled to connect with audiences The Mandalorian has been a hit; an authentic Stars Wars story that is part sci-fi and part Wild Wild Western. Disney+ has done a great job wit their MCU TV offerings; now they turn their attention to crafting a stable of Star Wars TV shows.
Thursday, December 30
The Center Seat: 55 Years of Star Trek (10 p.m. / Crave)
Episode 7 of the Star Trek docuseries is added to Crave to today for Canadians. (Americans can check out the series on History Vault.)
SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE SILENT SEA (ANYTIME / NETFLIX)
During a perilous 24-hour mission on the moon, space explorers try to retrieve samples from an abandoned research facility steeped in classified secrets.
Netflix’s Korean offerings have been a mixed bag (remember Space Sweepers?) but I’ll dip my toes into The Silent Sea. An adaptation from the 2014 short film The Sea of Tranquility the TV series follows a soldier for the space agency. (What a great line! A space agency soldier…). “During a perilous 24-hour mission on the moon, space explorers try to retrieve samples from an abandoned research facility steeped in classified secrets.” The trailer is reminiscent of old school late 80s/early 90s “in space no one can hear you scream…” kinda movies. And those are fun.
Friday, December 31
Death to 2021 (Anytime / Netflix)
This darkly comedic retrospective mixes real news footage and scripted talking-head interviews as it sends up the year that tried to one-up 2020.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: COBRA KAI: SEASON 4 (ANYTIME / NETFLIX)
Decades after the tournament that changed their lives, the rivalry between Johnny and Daniel reignites in this sequel to the “Karate Kid” films.
I’ve been repeatedly Crane Kicked in the nuts for failing to watch Cobra Kai. I know; I know. There’s no pressure to watch; Netflix has renewed the show for a fifth season. Still for now? Cobra Kai “takes place over 30 years after the events of the 1984 All Valley Karate Tournament with the continuation of the inescapable conflict between Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka). Season 4 finds the Miyagi-Do and Eagle Fang dojos joining forces to take down Cobra Kai at the All Valley Under 18 Karate Tournament… and whoever loses must hang up their gi.” I better hurry up and watch this before fans continue to wax on and wax off philosophically about the show’s qualities.
Saturday, January 1
Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (Anytime / HBO Max)
In this retrospective special, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson join filmmaker Chris Columbus and other legendary cast members as they journey back to Hogwarts to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first Harry Potter film.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: DOCTOR WHO: EVE OF THE DALEKS (8 P.M. / CTV SCI-FI CHANNEL & CRAVE)
The Doctor and Jamie, shortly after losing the TARDIS, are transported to 1866, where the Daleks force the Doctor to help them implement the human factor into Dalek brains in order to turn themselves into even deadlier living weapons.
A classic Doctor Who tradition! The 2022 Doctor Who specials will be the final three “episodes” that will conclude the thirteenth series and usher in a new Doctor. The first special is set to air on today with the additional specials airing later this year. These will be the final episodes to feature Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor and Chris Chibnall as showrunner. Russell T Davies returns following Chibnall and that is a #SetTheVCR special. I cannot wait for Davies to return.
Sunday, January 2
Around the World in 80 Days: Season 1 (8 p.m. / PBS)
A thrilling, new adaptation of Jules Verne’s classic adventure novel starring David Tennant.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: THE SIMPSONS: SEASON 33 (9 P.M. / FOX)
A musical comes to life in Springfield as Marge stages a revival of her beloved high school show.
Season 33 resumes in 2022! The NFL season should be concluding soon with the Super Bowl on February 13th. To get you in the mood for the upcoming playoffs The Simpsons have a football focused episode tonight. “Marge and Mr. Burns fight for the soul of a brash young football prodigy in the all-new “The Longest Marge.” The guest voices are: Beck Bennett as Grayson, Adam Schefter as himself, John Mulaney as Warburton Parker.
Sammy Younan is the affable host of My Summer Lair: think NPR’s Fresh Air meets Kevin Smith: interviews & impressions on Pop Culture.