The Best Of This Week’s TV

Happy Thanksgiving weekend to all of the people out there who celebrate the holiday. If you’re in a country like mine where we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving, this holiday just meant that there was very little television and lots of online sales. Anyway, back to the topic at hand: let’s talk about what showed this week. Before we get to the best, we have to talk honourable mentions.

Honourable Mentions

  • No Tomorrow.pngJane the Virgin – for Bruno Mars karaoke.
  • Gotham – for confirming that it gets a hundred times better when watched as a comedy rather than a drama.
  • Supergirl – for Alex: she’s quickly becoming the best part of the show.
  • No Tomorrow – for fuchsia houses and party crashers.
  • Scorpion – for farting superheroes that save California.

Show of the Week: The Flash

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I didn’t like Caitlin last season: she was boring and superfluous and I didn’t really understand what she added to the show. The only time that that changed was when we saw her Earth-2 doppelganger, Killer Frost. The people over at The Flash have clearly taken that to heart and this season we’re seeing Caitlin wrestle against her inner Killer Frost.

The Flash is good at heroes but their villains are often just a little bit too campy to be taken seriously or seen as genuinely threatening. With Killer Frost, Alchemy, and Savitar, the villains in this series have reached a new level of awesome.

Also in this episode, we were able to see Wally finally get his powers and all the Kid Flash fans rejoiced. They have been teasing this story-line for the longest time and we finally get to see it play out – in my opinion, just in the nick of time, because Wally was beginning to come across more like a whiny kid than a young hero.

Finally, dues must be paid to Grant Gustin and Carlos Valdes who are two fantastic actors that are able to bring real emotion to what can sometimes be a light show.

This Week’s Worst: Westworld

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I have been praising Westworld since its first episode because it’s new and different and a very brave concept to invest so much money in, but as the plot unravels I am losing interest.

This is a show about robotics, artificial intelligence, morality, humanity, and so many other huge ideas. It does well exploring them but in the end I worry that it is more of a philosophical discussion than a compelling, narrative-driven show. Clearly there is a story, I’m just not sure that it’s as interesting as the concepts that it is trying to explore.

People were calling it HBO’s new Game of Thrones before it ever aired but by now I think that the world can agree that that simply isn’t true. Forgetting the completely different genres, Game of Thrones was always the sort of show that left you shocked and wanting more. Westworld is interesting and intelligent but it’s not addictive. I could stop watching it at any point and not care about what happens next.

Are you looking forward to next week’s four-way CW superhero crossover? Which of the shows is your favourite? What did you watch this week? Let me know in the comments.

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The Best Of This Week’s TV

It’s Sunday evening which means that you’re likely trying to avoid thinking about the work week that begins tomorrow. Sorry for reminding you about that. If you want to think about something different then why don’t you join me in looking over the best of this week’s television. Before we get to the crème de la crème, let’s take a look at this week’s honourable mentions:

Honourable Mentions

  • raf.pngGotham – for a sublime anti-relationship PSA.
  • Once Upon A Time – for making ‘Darth Vader’ a verb.
  • Supergirl – for extra-terrestrial debt-collectors.
  • Empire – for taking the drama level from soap opera to telenovela real fast.
  • Jane The Virgin – for all the gratuitous male shirtlessness.
  • Pitch – for continually being so well-written that it makes me angry.
  • Black-ish – for trying to pass Laurence Fishburne off as somebody in their twenties.
  • Legends of Tomorrow – for not even slightly challenging my hatred of Westerns: that’s not a compliment by the way.

Show of the Week: Modern Family

Image result for modern family season 8 episode 7

There aren’t many sitcoms that can continue to make you laugh after eight seasons but that’s exactly what Modern Family is achieving episode after episode. I mean, a dead goat and Nathan Fillion? There’s no way that that isn’t comedy gold.

Seriously, Modern Family follows a simple formula with every episode but it hasn’t gone stale. The show remains hilarious but heart-warming; interesting but comfortably familiar. This week was just an example of how there is still so much to be learned about the wealth of characters that the show has.

One of the wonderful things about a show about family is that they’re always growing and developing. New members come in and some people leave but the core unit is always there.

This Week’s Worst: Arrow

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I adore Arrow and I think that this season in particular has been fantastic for the show which just makes this week’s episode even worse. It’s almost bad in a funny way.

The realistic, hand-to-hand combat fighting style is what really sets this show apart from the other superhero shows on The CW but this week missed the mark – literally. So many of the hits clearly did not land, a standout was Mr. Terrific flying backwards when he was just barely touched by Vigilante.

Other odd moments include the use of a teenager as paedophile bait; Oliver’s obtuseness as to the identity of the man behind the Vigilate mask; and we can’t forget the cringe-worthy voice modulation of Oliver’s new team.

The next time we see Arrow will be in the four-way DC crossover event and it will hopefully be back to true form.

What did you watch this week? Are you excited for the DC crossover event? Let me know in the comments.

The Best Of This Week’s TV

The Cubs won the World Series and apparently that’s a really big thing, so yay? Mainly I’m just excited that we get Empire, Modern Family, and Black-ish back next week. Regardless, even with those shows missing from the usual roster it was a good week for TV. Before we get to the best and the worst, let’s talk honourable mentions.

Honourable Mentions

  • Image result for arrow season 5 episode 7Jane The Virgin – for that shameless The CW promo.
  • Once Upon A Time – for bringing to life a Disney hero that I thought they never would in Nemo (I don’t care if it’s the wrong one, Nemo is Nemo).
  • No Tomorrow – for finally finding its niche and showing what it’s really about.
  • Crazy Ex-Girlfriend – for an entire musical number based on trigonometry.
  • How To Get Away With Murder – for the most brutal verbal smackdown that I’ve seen in recent television.
  • Pitch – for maintaining its streak of bringing me to tears every episode.
  • Supergirl – for underground, alien fight clubs.
  • Arrow – for recovering the flashbacks, it was hard-going last season but they may have just saved it.

Show Of The Week: Atlanta

Image result for atlanta finale

Season 1 of FX’s Atlanta ended this week with a brilliant finale that solidified it as one of the best freshman series of this season. From its first episode, Atlanta showed that it was different to anything else on the scene: a dramedy about the Atlanta hip-hop scene could have taken a lot of different directions but I would never have imagined that one of those would be the show that I relished watching over the last three months.

This show never shied away from the darker elements of the lifestyle that it was portraying. Violence, drugs and murder were never off-limits and it was that honesty that made it so believable and really elevated the comedy.

In the season finale we watch our protagonist, Earn, search for a jacket he lost the night before but the reason that he is so frantically looking for it is not revealed until the end in what people are pegging as a “fairytale ending”. We see Earn reject two separate offers to crash at other peoples’ homes and then go to sleep in a storage space full of his own possessions.

Clearly this isn’t everybody’s idea of a happy ending but in watching how Earn’s situation has developed from the first episode in which he didn’t have a steady income or a home of his own, you can’t help but feel warm and happy for him.

For most people watching this show, they won’t be able to personally relate to Earn’s reality. However at the root of this show is a very human theme of just wanting to achieve something and to live a comfortable, safe life. The show has been renewed for a second series and I personally, cannot wait to see how it develops in the future.

This Week’s Worst: Legends of Tomorrow

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Legends of Tomorrow has never shied away from the issues within the time periods that they visit. As a diverse group that travels through space and time, sexism and racism are themes that crop up again and again but they are never the focus of the episode.

This week Legends had an episode set in Mississippi during the civil war and the two black Legends find themselves trying to infiltrate the home of a slave-owner. Also, there are zombies (I don’t why). This was the show’s first foray into a really heavy topic. A slave woman was whipped; slaves were tied up in an outhouse and whilst they didn’t bust out the ‘n’ word, they really went for it.

Normally I would commend this from a network show but it just didn’t sit right with me. Unfortunately the weight of this episode was on the shoulders of Franz Drameh, a young and fairly green actor that I don’t think sold it. I could see what they were trying to achieve but I didn’t feel the emotions that they were clearly trying to evoke.

What did you watch this week? What’s your take on this week’s Legends episode? Did you watch Atlanta this season? Let me know in the comments.