Crashing – “Jaboukie” (A) / season premiere
Pete returns from the high of his campus tour, jazzed about a great young comedian (Jaboukie Young-White, playing a version of himself). But the title of the show becomes literal again, as Jaboukie immediately leap-frogs Pete, booking a semi-regular gig at the Comedy Cellar, while Pete kills but without any discernible POV.
True Detective – “The Big Never” (B+)
Stephen Dorff gets his big moment to shine, proving he’s very much the Woody to Season 1’s McConaughey. But the episode carried horrifying resonance, as a group of white fathers harass and beat a Native American man. What that was in his bag we have yet to find out, but it’s (mostly) clear their hate and fear is misguided.
Alias Grace (B+)
This Canadian adaptation of Margaret Atwood’s novel probably could have been four episodes instead of six, but I was transfixed by Sarah Gadon’s performance as the possible murderer. It was certainly nice to see Zachary Levi and David Cronenberg(!) pop up in supporting roles, but Gadon gave it her all, and it’s pretty appalling she wasn’t nominated for an Emmy this year. Mostly, I just wanted Mary Harron and Sarah Polley, who directed and wrote all six episodes respectively, to get more opportunities to make haunting, deeply felt projects. It shouldn’t just be up to Canadian TV.