Saturday Night Live – “Dave Chappelle/Foo Fighters” (B+)
The cold open wasn’t a complete atrocity, like Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton singing “Hallelujah,” but it wasn’t anything special either. Chappelle’s blistering monologue was excellent, as was the Aunt Jemima/Uncle Ben sketch. But aside from an incredible digital short, the show seemed to just peter out, though it was nice to see Michael Che take off his clip-on tie and have a drink now that Trump’s going to be a one-term president.
The Mandalorian – “The Heiress” (B+)
Another thrilling episode, though almost of the significant plot seems to be only relevant to those obsessed with the wider mythology/canon of Star Wars, which is definitely not me.
The Queen’s Gambit (A- average)
Its first episode is kind of a drag, but it’s brimming with life once Anya Taylor-Joy takes over the lead role: an orphan, an addict and a genius. Even if you’re not into chess, this is an often thrilling, well-acted, perfectly controlled show. One of the year’s best surprises.