Entertainment To-Do List: Week of 9/17/21

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The Wonder Years (CREDIT: Matt Sayles/ABC)

Every week, I list all the upcoming (or recently released) movies, TV shows, albums, podcasts, etc. that I believe are worth checking out.

Movies
Blue Bayou (Theaters)
Cry Macho (Theaters and HBO Max) – MACHOOOOOOOOOO!
The Eyes of Tammy Faye (Theaters)
The Nowhere Inn (Theaters and On Demand) – Carrie Brownstein and Annie Clark (St. Vincent) team up on screen.

TV
Sex Education Season 3 (September 17 on Netflix)
-Creative Arts Emmy Awards (September 18 on FXX)
-73rd Primetime Emmy Awards (September 19 on CBS)
Teenage Euthanasia Series Premiere (September 19 on Adult Swim) – Animated at a funeral home.
Alter Ego Series Premiere (September 22 on FOX) – The “world’s first avatar singing competition.”
The Conners Season 4 Premiere (September 22 on ABC) – Another live episode.
Dear White People Season 4 (September 22 on Netflix)
The Goldbergs Season 9 Premiere (September 22 on ABC)
Home Economics Season 2 Premiere (September 22 on ABC)
The Masked Singer Season 6 Premier (September 22 on FOX)
Star Wars: Visions (September 22 on Disney+) – Anime-style.
The Wonder Years Reboot Series Premiere (September 22 on ABC) – Don Cheadle takes over narrating duties from Daniel Stern.

Music
-Lil Nas X, Montero
-Lindsey Buckingham, Lindsey Buckingham

The 67 Best TV Shows of 2020

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Clockwise from Top Left: What We Do in the Shadows, Never Have I Ever, Better Call Saul, How To with John Wilson (CREDIT: YouTube Screenshots)

Last year, I decided to rank as many TV shows as I felt like recognizing in my year-end list, and that worked out so well that I decided to do it again for 2020. So welcome to my ranking of the 67 Best TV Shows of 2020! Not every show is accompanied by a blurb, just the ones that I felt like I really needed to say something about.

I worked with a self-imposed rule that I had to have watched at least 50% of a show’s 2020 output for it to be eligible, but there were some shows that I’ve only just begun to watch that I wanted to recognize as well, so they’ve got their own Honorable Mention section. And there were also some shows that aired relatively few episodes in 2020 to the point that I didn’t think they should be eligible either, so they’ve also got an Honorable Mention section. And then there’s one more show that’s managed to establish its very own Honorable Mention section, and that’s where we start.

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Entertainment To-Do List: Week of 10/16/20

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The Trial of the Chicago 7 (CREDIT: Netflix)

Every week, I list all the upcoming (or recently released) movies, TV shows, albums, podcasts, etc. that I believe are worth checking out.

Movies
The Trial of the Chicago 7 (October 16 on Netflix)
The Witches (October 22 on HBO Max) – Bobby Zemeckis takes on Roald Dahl.

TV
Card Sharks Season Premiere (October 18 on ABC)
Supermarket Sweep Reboot Premiere (October 18 on ABC) – Host Leslie Jones sends the contestants on their grocery hunts.
Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? Season Premiere (October 18 on ABC)
black-ish Season 7 Premiere (October 21 on ABC)
The Conners Season 3 Premiere (October 21 on ABC)
The Goldbergs Season 8 Premiere (October 21 on ABC)

Music on TV
-Miley Cyrus Backyard Sessions (October 16 on MTV)

Music on Stage as a Movie on TV
David Byrne’s American Utopia (October 17 on HBO)

Podcasts
Dead Eyes Season 2 (Premieres October 22) – Connor Ratliff is still wondering why Tom Hanks fired him from Band of Brothers.

Jmunney’s 2020 Emmy Wish List, Part 2: Comedy

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CREDIT: YouTube Screenshots

The 2020 Emmy nominations will be announced on July 28. As per annual tradition, I have assembled a Wish List for as many categories as I have something to say about. There is no minimum or maximum number per category, nor is there any strict adherence to official Emmy rules. And of course, there is the necessary caveat that I have not seen everything. Even with much of the country shut down for the past few months, that’s impossible.

Yesterday I kicked off my Emmy Wish List coverage with plenty of Drama. Today it’s time to laugh along with the Comedies, and boy, what a year for laughter it was! At the top of my list are those wacky vampires (Vacky vampires? Wacky wampires? Vacky wampires?) of What We Do in the Shadows, which in its second season staked itself permanently in my heart. It’s my winner for Comedy Series and all but one of the acting categories. Too bad it doesn’t have a Supporting Actress, otherwise it would’ve been a clean sweep.

Matt Berry is at the top of the Lead Actor heap thanks almost entirely to the Jackie Dayton episode (which ought to also earn Mark Hamill a Guest Actor trophy). Meanwhile, Mark Proksch slays the Supporting Actor Field thanks to Colin Robinson taking full advantage of his promotion. And Natasia Demetriou is the #1 Lead Actress because Nadja is awesome in every episode.

As for the Supporting ladies, I’ve got a little bit of everything, and ultimately it just felt right to go with the representative of the oldest show on my ballot as the winner.

Some other notables: Never Have I Ever and mixed-ish make the strongest showings of freshman series, Sex Education switches its category placement from Drama to Comedy (and remains worthy of praise), and I’m currently only on Season 2 of Schitt’s Creek, but I’m sure it’s just as good in its final season.

KEY:
Bold=My winner
!( )!=I haven’t caught up to the current season of this show, but I still wanted to recognize it.

Comedy Series
Atypical
Baskets
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Mixed-ish
Never Have I Ever
Sex Education
!(Schitt’s Creek)!
What We Do in the Shadows

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The 53 Best TV Shows of 2019

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CREDIT (Clockwise from Top Left): Amazon; Disney; Pamela Littky/FOX; Rhys Thomas/IFC

Under the known laws of physics, it is currently impossible to watch every TV show (or even just every good show) airing new episodes in a given year. But for those of us who treat televisual consumption as a transcendent pursuit, we do our best to fit in as many programs as possible, which means that there are more than ten or even twenty shows worth recognizing in an annual best-of list. So this year, I decided to rank as many shows as I thought were worthy of recognition and provide blurbs for the ones where I really needed to say something.

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Entertainment To-Do List: Week of 9/20/19

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CREDIT: Netflix

Every week, I list all the upcoming (or recently released) movies, TV shows, albums, podcasts, etc. that I believe are worth checking out.

Movies
Ad Astra (Theatrically Nationwide) – Dad Astra.
Between Two Ferns: The Movie (Streaming on Netflix)
Loro (Limited Theatrically) – Bunga bunga!

TV
It’s that time of year again!
Disenchantment Season 1, Part 2 (September 20 on Netflix)
-Creative Arts Emmy Awards (September 21 on FXX)
-71st Primetime Emmy Awards (September 22 on FOX)
The Conners Season 2 Premiere (September 24 on ABC)
black-ish Season 6 Premiere (September 24 on ABC)
mixed-ish Series Premiere (September 24 on ABC)
The Masked Singer Season 2 Premiere (September 25 on ABC)
The Goldbergs Season 7 Premiere (September 25 on ABC)
Schooled Season 2 Premiere (September 25 on ABC)
Single Parents Season 2 Premiere (September 25 on ABC)
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia Season 14 Premiere (September 25 on FXX)
South Park Season 22 Premiere (September 25 on Comedy Central)
Crank Yankers Season 5 Premiere (September 25 on Comedy Central)
Superstore Season 5 Premiere (September 26 on NBC)
Young Sheldon Season 3 Premiere (September 26 on CBS)
The Good Place Season 4 Premiere (September 26 on NBC)
The Unicorn Series Premiere (September 26 on CBS)
Evil Series Premiere (September 26 on CBS)

Music
-Brittany Howard, Jaime

Jmunney’s 2019 Emmy Wish List, Part 1: Comedy

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CREDIT: Scott Patrick Green/Netflix

The 2019 Emmy nominations will be announced on July 16, and as that annual occasion approaches, I typically put together my own list of which shows and performers I would like to see recognized. But I’ve had some mixed feelings about that this year, as I’ve grappled with the fact that in the era of Peak TV, it becomes more and more impossible to capture all my favorites in one place. Ultimately I decided I wouldn’t be too formal or too precious about it. If there are ten shows I really want to see nominated, then I’ll list ten on my wish list. But if there are just two I really like in another category, then I’ll just list two.

I’m kicking things off today with Comedy. Before I get to my selections, I’ve got some thoughts to share, mainly about the new entrants. Among freshman shows, The Other Two mixed affecting family dynamics with the silliness of fame, while What We Do in the Shadows was just so wonderfully goofy. But it’s a couple of sadly cancelled high school-set sophomore shows that have my most love: Netflix’s poopy mockumentary American Vandal and NBC’s sharp and lovable A.P. Bio.

Among the actors, Young Sheldon‘s ensemble has really been a welcome part of my weekly life, and with that in mind, it’s been a while since either the Academy or I have recognized Jim Parsons for The Big Bang Theory, and you know what? I’m going to recognize him for his final year. Among names that you may not recognize (yet), let’s all keep in mind What We Do in the Shadows‘ Kayvan Novak for our future comedy endeavors.

Nominees are listed in alphabetical order. My top choices are in bold.

Outstanding Comedy
American Vandal
A.P. Bio
Barry
GLOW
The Goldbergs
The Good Place
Jane the Virgin
The Last O.G.
The Other Two
Speechless
What We Do in the Shadows

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What Won TV? – February 19-February 25, 2017

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

agents-of-shield-self-control

Sunday – Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Monday – Jane the Virgin
Tuesday – Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. going on hiatus in maddening style
Wednesday – The Goldbergs
Thursday – Baskets
Friday – Another Jeopardy! College Tournament satisfactorily completed
Saturday – Film Independent Spirit Awards

What Won TV? – October 9-October 15, 2016

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

call-ahmad-white

Sunday – Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Monday – Full Frontal with Samantha Bee
Tuesday – Most people don’t realize Atlanta‘s quality is another universe. Don’t be dumb.
Wednesday – The Goldbergs
Thursday – Better Things
Friday – Time to a deliver an Eric Andre Show finale! (Time to a deliver an Eric Andre Show finale!)
Saturday – That part in the Ann Arbor Short Film Festival (SNL) when everyone in the crowd stood up to get on the stage

What Won TV? – October 2-October 8, 2016

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In this feature, I look back at each day of the past week and determine what shows “won TV” for the night. That is, I consider every episode of television I watched that aired on a particular day and declare which was the best.

david-alan-thicke

Sunday – Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
Monday – Milo Murphy’s Law
Tuesday – The Flash
Wednesday – The Goldbergs
Thursday – Better Things, and its gooey heartwarming ending (Honorable Mention: the classiest exit on Drag Race All Stars)
Friday – The Eric Andre Show, featuring David Alan Thicke
Saturday – Saturday Night Live, especially the power duo of Vanessa Bayer and Kyle Mooney

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