The Righteous Gemstones – “Interlude” (A-)
A crazy ’80s fever dream of an episode, one that doesn’t have many laughs. But it contextualizes every character and relationship effectively. I’m no Sugarland fan, but Jennifer Nettles is extraordinary as Aimee-Leigh. And I’ll have “Misbehavin'” stuck in my head the rest of the year.
The Righteous Gemstones – “Wicked Lips” (B+)
The show’s going to have to clarify the relationship between Kelvin and the Nancies’ wayward daughter, or else it’s going to get icky, but for now it’s a sweet subplot in a crass show. Keefe is rapidly becoming my favorite character, one of the few people on the show actively trying to become a better person.
The Boys – Season 1 (A- average)
A deeply cynical superhero satire that found its black heart along the way. Antony Starr’s performance as Homelander is one of the best of the year. The show hit on everything: terrorism, corporate greed, hypocritical churches, government corruption, drug addictions, racism, sexual assault and environmentalism, and more, and still managed to be hilarious and thrilling. And by gradually revealing its cheeky co-protagonist (a terrific Karl Urban) as a bottomless well of rage and nothing else, constantly flipped our expectations.
Schitt’s Creek – Season 2 (B+ average)
Even sweeter as it adjusts to a more typical sitcom from the fish-out-of-water first season. Just a total delight.