Weekly TV Hot Takes: 5/16/17

I forgot yesterday until it was too late. There goes my regular schedule, couldn’t even make it three weeks. I will try harder for the 8 of you who read these!

The “Weeklys”

Jimmy interrogating Chuck goes surprisingly well

Better Call Saul — S3E5 “Chicanery”

This was the best episode of this entire show thus far. It’s basically what I imagined when they announced a Saul Goodman spinoff, but better. It also feels like what the entire show has been building to: an epic clash between brothers disguised as an intimate courtroom drama. Gus and Mike also sat out the week, which is A-OK with me.

Rating: 5/5

Claudia is certainly a monster, remember season 1?

The Americans — S5E10 “Darkroom”

Are the Jennings’ monsters for what they have done to Paige? Probably, yes. But man, they love each other, and this episode had me very emotional. And maybe they’re monsters, but Paige becoming such a good little spy is worth it, right?

Rating: 5/5

I don’t remember this scene

Fargo — S3E4 ”The Narrow Escape Problem”

I literally don’t remember anything about this episode of Fargo except that Billy Bob Thornton narrated it. I did not enjoy it.

Rating: 2/5

Stop, you need the password for the sex lion boat

The Leftovers — S3E5 ”It’s a Matt, Matt, Matt, Matt World”

This will be remembered as the “Sex Lion Boat” episode of The Leftovers. And that isn’t even giving anything away! It’s what happens on the sex lion boat that is important. Namely, Matt has a crisis of faith, but doesn’t he always? Its opening and closing moments are possibly my favorite things I’ve seen on TV this year, and the acting on this show really is good enough to sell this insane material. Did I mention there was a sex lion boat?

Rating: 5/5

Reality Corner

Those are some choice stock photographs

Then and Now: with Andy Cohen

Why wasn’t I aware of this show before this week? It’s basically a Bravo version of I Love The 2000s. Why wouldn’t I want to hear my favorite Vanderpump Rules celebrities discuss the events of the year 2003? THIS SHOW WAS MADE FOR ME. Also I think 2003 might have been the beginning of the end of the world, as it is the year The Apprentice debuted and the year Jessica Simpson did not know if the tuna was chicken or tuna.

Rating: 5/5

I’ve never seen people taste wine so intently


I also discovered this gem of a show this week, which documents the efforts of a few individuals per year in their quest to become “Master Sommeliers”. This is, as they say in the show, “the hardest exam in the world.” Only 50 people per year are even allowed to take this test, it’s that difficult. Yes, this is a show about people studying to pass an exam about wine. I never knew such a thing could be so fascinating, but it is! And I love that I’m learning about wine in the meantime.

Rating: 4/5

Bonus Binge!

Aziz takes his dates to all the cool New York places I’ve been to

Master of None: Season 2

Alloooooora! This show is so pleasant to watch. It has a very naturalist tone, so I feel like I can relate to it even when it’s portraying a bougie fantasy. It’s also a champion of standalone episodes, which is something I ride or die for. “Religion” hits very close to home for me, “New York, I Love You” is stunningly beautiful, and “Thanksgiving” uses familiar holiday episode tropes to tell a unique story I’ve never seen on television before. I have some problems with the end of the season, but even then I felt like I was being smothered in its blanket of warmness. I will gladly watch more of this show when it is out again in another two years.

Rating: 4/5