What I Watched This Week: 22 Jan 2017

Saturday Night Live – “Aziz Ansari/Big Sean” (A-)
While no sketches will be considered all-timers, this is one of the most remarkably consistent episodes of SNL that I can remember. Absolutely no dud sketches, a terrific monologue and at least two solid pre-filmed segments that always help. I hope Aziz comes back as often as some of the other frequent hosts of late.

This Is Us – “Three Sentences” (B)
While I’m not sure the temptation of another interested heavy-set guy is what I wanted from Kate’s storyline, the rest is working like gangbusters, particularly with Kevin finally showing some emotional depth.

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia – “Wolf Cola: A Public Relations Nightmare” (B+)
Frank’s confusion of Boko Haram with Boca Raton joins the pantheon of great sitcom misunderstandings. The whole show is solid, as Frank, Dee & Dennis satirize the 24-hour news cycle and Charlie & Mac sell their horrific protein shake to actual UFC fighters.

Bright Lights: Starring Debbie Reynolds & Carrie Fisher (A-)
A beautiful, messy documentary on the (unaware) last days of two Hollywood icons, presenting their unvarnished relationship in all its highs and lows. It’s not a complete picture, but it’s beautiful snapshot of a mother and daughter who clung to each other after decades of driving each other apart.

This Is Us – “The Big Day” (B)
A somewhat redundant but lovable episode that doesn’t time-shift at all, focusing solely on the intense emotions of the tangentially related family members of 1980.

Happy Endings – “Four Weddings and a Funeral (Minus Three Weddings and a Funeral)” (A)
This Season Two finale is easily in the top 10 wedding episodes of all time, and would have served as a solid series finale had it not been renewed for one final, glorious season. This might be a new tradition, to watch this before every wedding I go to. “I may have hung up my cone bra and headset a long time ago, but that mole still fits.”

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