This Is Us – “Ave Maria” (B+) / season premiere
It’s not a good sign that I’m already a little frustrated with Kate, but this excellent season premiere reminds me why I love this show so much. And instead of giving Justin Hartley material he’s not capable of handling, he gets a forbidden love affair, which is much more that actor’s speed.
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia – “Time’s Up for the Gang” (A-)
Possibly the absolute worst week for this particular show to do an episode on sexual harassment and assault. There were a million ways it could have gone wrong, but like last season’s episode about race, it’s a lot sharper than you’d normally give this show credit for. It also focuses on what makes this show such a profane treasure: everyone in the gang, even when they think they’re not, is a truly terrible person.
The Good Place – “Everything Is Bonzer!” (A-) / season premiere
Even back on Earth, the show is still committed to puns, humanity and finding out why it’s so hard to be a good person. It’s another reset episode, but one that adds a new wrinkle: the deliciously awful presence of Adam Scott as Trevor.
Forever (B+ average)
When it knows what it’s doing, it’s up there with the best shows of the year. Unfortunately, even for a show with an eight-episode run, there was a lot of filler. Two of its episodes (the opener and “Andre and Sarah”) are magnificent half-hours for wildly different reasons. But unfortunately, a show about getting out of aimlessness and routine finds itself trapped in there for a mid-season lull. I don’t know if there will be more, but if there will be, it needs more focus.