new and noteworthy tv: 4/24-4/31

Well I got a little behind, mostly because I took a break from my regularly scheduled programming to binge season 1 of 13 Reasons Why, the Netflix show about the high school girl who leaves tapes behind after her suicide, and although the structure caused some flaws overall I found it compelling. And there’s always more to watch…

  • Bates Motel (A&E) Series Finale, Monday, 10pm – This was one of those shows that I liked a lot of the elements and though I decided to cut the cord I hear it got better with time.
  • Great News (NBC) Series Premiere, Tuesday, 9pm – Newsroom workplace comedy introducing the producer’s mom to the office, starring that cute blonde girl who has done a bunch of stuff that you’re not sure what she’s from (Briga Heelan) with Nicole Richie, hmm.
  • Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu) Series Premiere, Wednesday – Much anticipated adaptation of the book with Elisabeth Moss, Joseph Fiennes, and Yvonne Strahovski among others, too bad Hulu is one of the lines I still have drawn.
  • Catastrophe (Am) Season Premiere, Friday – This is one of my fave gym shows and it’s back now that I’ve fallen off the gym bandwagon.
  • Dear White People (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – Based on the film a biracial student at a predominantly white college stirs up some controversy, it’s gotten some good buzz.
  • Las Chicas del Cable (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – This unheard of (to me) show looks to be an import from Spain which between that and the title makes me think this tale of four women in 1920s Madrid is in Spanish.
  • Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (TBS) Saturday, 10pm – A special Not the White House Correspondents Dinner.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

when weird works

I mentioned when hearing about the cancelation of Man Seeking Woman that it wasn’t one of the weird shows that worked for me. But I do appreciate that in the age of peak tv while there isn’t room or an appetite for everything, there’s more room for things that might not resonate with everyone but are strong for a few. Some of the shows that I know I watch that are a little off:

  • Atlanta (Fx) – Weird factor minor. Not the weirdest of the crop but Donald Glover’s narrative style used unusual formats from episode to episode and takes some specific weird turns with random magical realism like having Justin Beiber cast as a black actor when he shows up for a celebrity basketball game, but mostly it’s about a guy trying to make it in Atlanta.
  • Baskets (Fx) – Weird factor medium. I remember reading a review of this right as it was coming out that said something like this isn’t for everyone but if you like it this is great, and it turns out I would stop shy of saying that the show is great but I haven’t been able to stop watching, I’d also almost characterize this as only a minor weird factor, as the format is more traditional, but the people and situations are so off as it follows French trained clown Chip Baskets, with a developed focus on more of the Baskets clan (including Louie Anderson in a sincere performance as his mom) and friends.
  • Bojack Horseman (Net) – Weird factor medium. Following a washed up actor through various despondent relationships and situations sounds minorly weird but once you make it animated, him a horse man, and make half of the rest of the world other animal people, it opens up a whole world of weird in a way that plays very tongue and cheek with how it sets up this parallel reality and brings up amazing options e.g. the underwater episode.
  • Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency (BBCA) – Weird factor major. Genre pushed to the extreme this one is adapted from Douglas Adams novels, this sort of absurdist paranormal detective show is one that you just need to go with, I’m very curious how the series progresses in another season (starring Elijah Wood getting another weird nod after Wilfred).
  • Legion (Fx) – Weird factor major. More on the genre lines, I generally enjoy the Marvels but was getting a little down on most of the latest entries in the Netflix world, and was thrilled to see this totally different take, almost more about the layers of mental illness real and power driven with a storytelling style that almost worked best for me the less clear it was on what was going on, beautifully weird acting and production.
  • People of Earth (TBS) – Weird factor medium. This sitcom of a lighter nature with kind of sincere characters introduces sort of a workplace comedy around alien abductions, complete with various aliens’s POV and it ends up being fun and often sweet.

What else in the world of weird is on your radar?

Continue Reading

new and noteworthy tv: 4/17-4/23

]The backlog continues to pile up but I’m still looking forward to Fargo and Bosch.

  • Famous in Love (Free) Series Premiere, Tuesday, 9pm – A new drama where we follow a college student who gets a role in a Hollywood blockbuster and deals with her new worlds, and of course some romance, and I have to say the preview alone made me want to hate it.
  • Problematic with Moshe Kasher (Com) Series Premiere, Tuesday, 10pm – A comedic talk show that deals with new topics each week ripped from the interwebs.
  • Fargo (Fx) Season Premiere, Wednesday, 10pm – This season brings Ewan McGregor to two key roles to the new drama which promises crime and murder.
  • Bill Nye Saves the World (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – Bill does science to tell it like it is.
  • Bosch (Am) Season Premiere, Friday – Bosch is back but now that I’m into The Wire I may need to take a pause on this because watching them at the same time seems to confuse me.
  • Girlboss (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – Based on the story of the founder of Nasty Gal brand of online clothing sales they’re going for a comedic re-imagining and might have some moments.
  • Mary Kills People (Life) Series Premiere, Sunday, 10pm – As much as I expect camp from Lifetime this series is actually about a doctor who helps people in need end their lives.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

new and noteworthy tv: 4/10-4/16

Still trying to get an episode of The Wire in each week to make some progress but life is getting in the way of my queue, backlogging shows like Underground, Human, and Feud for when I’ve got a bit more time.

  • Return of the Mac (POP) Series Premiere, Wednesday 8:30pm – Not sure what POP network is (I checked and I don’t get the channel) but it’s bringing a new sitcom starring Joey McIntyre as a version of himself trying to make it as an actor.
  • Chelsea (Net) Season Premiere, Friday – She’s back for another season.
  • Fortitude (Am) Season Premiere, Friday – This northernmost town murder series returns.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000 (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – A reboot of this cult classic where three characters comment throughout bad flicks with Felicia Day, Patton Oswalt, and Jonah Ray.
  • Class (BBCA) Series Premiere, Saturday, 10pm – Dr Who spinoff where the doctor entrusts some students to protect the earth.
  • Stayin’ Alive (CBS) Sunday, 8pm – Honoring the Bee Gees.
  • The White Princess (Starz) Series Premiere, Sunday, 8pm – This series looks at intrigue around Elizabeth’s marriage to Henry VII.
  • Guerrilla (Show) Series Premiere, Sunday, 9pm – A limited series about a couple set against the backdrop of ’70s London underground politics, oh and it’s got Idris Elba.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

new and noteworthy tv: 4/3-4/9

Well life commitments are already getting in the way of my tv watching habits. Aside from immediately wanting to watch the finale of Legion (can’t wait to see what S2 is going to be like) I’ve tried to knock out some of the non-streaming new shows to see if they need to be added to the queue. Rebel actually looks like it could be fun with a pass on Shots Fired, Imaginary Mary, and Nobodies, I have been for some reason holding onto iffy Trial & Error, with comedies it’s sometimes worth seeing whether they can grow it into anything.

  • Chewing Gum (Net) Season Premiere, Tuesday – I caught the first season of this oddball comedy and though intrigued I don’t know that I found it amusing enough to tune back in for another.
  • Dimension 404 (Hulu) Series Premiere, Tuesday – A sci-fi anthology with stories digging into the digital age.
  • iZombie (CW) Season Premiere, Tuesday, 9pm – Excited to see where our favorite zombie and her group of of companions with their crime solving and getting into trouble end up.
  • Prison Break (Fox) Season Premiere, Tuesday, 9pm – I loved the first season of this show though the following seasons finally drove me to extreme enough frustration to abandon, while I always thought it would work best as a limited series the one review I read of the reboot said this might be closer to the later than the former seasons.
  • Brockmire (IFC) Series Premiere, Wednesday, 10pm – Hank Azaria and Amanda Peet star in this comedy bringing a disgraced baseball announcer down to the minor league which sounds like it could have some good elements.
  • The Toy Box (ABC) Series Premiere, Friday, 8pm – It’s like Shark Tank for toys with a panel of kids.
  • First Dates (NBC) Series Premiere, Friday, 8pm – A voyeuristic look at first dates.
  • You the Jury (Fox) Series Premiere, Friday 9pm – Viewers decide verdicts.
  • The Son (AMC) Series Premiere, Saturday, 9pm – Pierce Brosnan as a 1900’s frontier time empire holder may or may not bring western enjoyment.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

breaking up is hard to do

With the wrapping up of Grimm and Bones, two shows that I quite enjoyed but abandoned along the way, made me start doing another think on shows that had once be enjoyed (some making my favorite tv of the year lists) and had to be given up along the way. Real estate for tv shows these days is limited so though I like to give some a long leash eventually the cost (time)/benefit (enjoyment) needs to hit a reality check.

  • The 100 (CW) – This pretty teens style CW show really developed into an interesting post-apocalyptic take but after a mixed season last year (as well as some unfortunately cast cuts) this year’s latest impending doom just couldn’t keep my interest.
  • The Blacklist (NBC) – I was never a fan of Elizabeth and as all the drama revolves around her it was always a matter as to whether Red and the others could balance that out, and when things turned to Elizabeth and her baby I couldn’t take it anymore, I wish they had killed her off.
  • Empire (Fox) – I love a fun soapy show and the musical angle on this just made it that much more fun, but these all seem to have a shelf life, no matter how much I enjoy the characters there’s a limit to how many circles of drama can keep me engaged.
  • The Outsiders (WGN) – This captured a little of the spirit of the total chaos of Sons of Anarchy with the wild folks in the woods but turned out to be too much of a mixed bag to keep it in the lineup.
  • Sleepy Hollow (Fox) – The first season of this was what’s been described as ‘bonkers awesome’ and then while they continued to struggle with how to manage the stories and supporting cast the key was always the chemistry between the two leads, and when they decided to nix one of the two in a reboot that was it for me.
  • The Walking Dead (AMC) – Ok, so the drama here was usually a good balance of zombie chaos outshone by drama and violence of the more human kind but somehow eventually managed to undermine the characters and my patience in sticking through some of the downs for more sparing ups.

And some previous drops Awkward, Grey’s Anatomy, Last Man on Earth, Major Crimes, Modern Family, Nashville, Suits and my most controversial Breaking Bad following season 2 (I am tempted to go back and see if I would have turned back around on this).

Continue Reading

new and noteworthy tv: 3/27-4/2

Have been investigating the Amazon Prime offerings for both half hour shows that are good for watching at the gym (Transparent, Catastrophe, One Mississippi, Fleabag, and now Bored to Death) as well as hour longs to keep in the queue after I take care of The Wire (which will take a bit).

  • Bones/Grimm (Fox/NBC) Series Finales, Tuesday/Friday, 9/8pm – Two series that I abandoned are wrapping their runs but I’ll remember the early years fondly.
  • Rebel (BET) Series Premiere, Tuesday, 10pm – John Singleton directs this look at a PI dealing with dirty cops and personal drama.
  • Harlots (Hulu) Series Premiere, Wednesday – 18th century London brothel owner and mother has some tough and courtly battles ahead, some initial positive buzz.
  • Imaginary Mary (ABC) Series Premiere, Wednesday, 8:30 – Jenna Elfman returns to comedy in a role that has her in a new relationship that somehow triggers the return of an imaginary friend, not all that promising but perhaps a look.
  • Nobodies (TVL) Series Premiere, Wednesday, 10pm – Melissa McCarthy and Ben Falcone bring a Groundlings created series of a three trying to get a script made in Hollywood, a preview of the first had some potential but I was a little bit over the awkward misfits making things worse for selves.
  • 13 Reasons Why (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – This look back at a girl who commits suicide through audio tapes she’s left has some initial positive talk though sounds like there might be some inconsistency in the full run.
  • Academy of Country Music Awards (CBS) Sunday, 8pm – Luke Bryan and Dierks Bentley host.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

new and noteworthy tv: 3/20-3/26

Not a lot new happening here so I can pay attention the Americans, Humans, and Legion.

  • Shots Fired (Fox) Series Premiere, Wednesday, 8pm – I haven’t heard much but looks like mildly positive possibilities for this Dept of Justice investigation drama into small town shooting murders and police involved shootings with the lens of white and African American.
  • Grace & Frankie (Net) Season Premiere, Friday – This isn’t a great show but there’s enough going on with the great cast that it’s entertaining.
  • Ingobernable (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – No word yet on this Mexican political drama about president and first lady.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

new and noteworthy tv: 3/13-3/19

And just like that I’m behind on television again… Still need to check out Feud and the new seasons of The Americans and Underground plus keeping up on shows I’m digging like Humans and Legion though somehow it’s easier to watch junky tv like giving Catch another shot.

  • Adam Carolla and Friends Build Stuff Live (Spike) Series Premiere, Tuesday, 10pm – Sounds like it’s a talk show where he talks and then helps famous friends build stuff.
  • Trial & Error (NBC) Series Premiere, Tuesday, 10/10:30pm – This seems to spoof the true crime documentaries with John Lithgow as defendant, rumor has it this isn’t amazing but the top notch cast might make it worth watching.
  • Snatch (Crackle) Series Premiere, Thursday – Apparently it’s loosely based on the flick, a group of small time con artists end up in the sights of big time criminals after they find a truck o’ gold, not that promising.
  • Marvel’s Iron Fist (Net) Series Premiere, Friday – The latest in the Netflix Marvel universe is unfortunately getting no good buzz.
  • You Are Wanted (Am) Series Premiere, Friday – A German release this drama tells the story of a hotel manager whose identity is stolen things start to get dicey.
  • Truth and Lies: The Family Manson (ABC) Friday, 9pm – More about the family.

The procrastinator lists items that may not be on your regular season pass, though notation does not imply recommendation. Times noted are typically PST.

Continue Reading

prime television

I finally broke down and signed up for Amazon Prime, not for the shipping but for the tv. Being old enough to remember the idea that most tv is free unless you want to throw down for ‘premium’ cable I’m now viscerally opposed to the nickel and dime feeling that I’m supposed to subscribe to everything to watch good tv. I still can’t bring myself to pay for beyond basic+ cable so I miss out on the quality from HBO, Showtime, and apparently even channels like Spike (darn that Ink Master). Then people keep talking about great shows on Amazon, Hulu, and now even CBS All Access with the introduction of The Good Wife spin-off The Good Fight. Don’t even get me started on other random subscription services.

I’ve been a long subscriber of Netflix, getting on board when this took over from my video rental service and staying when I relinquished the availability of all videos in the dvd delivery service and moved just to streaming. My rationale at the time was that there was enough available on streaming to keep me occupied and that I wasn’t watching enough movies to keep the rentals going. This was before the introduction of things like Orange is the New Black and House of Cards made their original content buzzworthy,  but when that came out followed by others it just sealed the fate of my keeping the service.

To supplement I’ve been renting the occasional movie on Amazon but with the a la carte pricing the cost of seasons of tv just seemed daunting. I recently finished watching Mad Men (streaming on Netflix) and I decided I had waited long enough to watch the show that was so highly regarded, The Wire.

So I could throw down for an HBO or HBO Now subscription but as long as I’m not too put out by missing the current seasons Amazon seemed to offer more bang for the buck. For $99/yr (bringing monthly down to $8.25/mo) you get the old catalog of HBO shows (not the currents), you get a handful of free movies, and you get some additional services including of course free shipping. So now that I’m in I’ve also added their original series. Have Bosch, Catastrophe, Fleabag, One Mississippi, and Transparent along with those yet to come sealed my forever fate? And what else should I be watching?

Continue Reading
1 2 3 81