What I Watched This Week: 24 May 2020

“New France” (B+) / series premiere
“The Turtle King” (B)
Not exactly my cup of tea, but this New World-set historical drama is well-acted and well-directed by David Slade (Hannibal). Its treatment of native characters is not what I expected based on its opening minutes, but it’s clear early on that the white characters are the savage ones. The accents are all over the place, though.

Mrs. America – “Reagan” (B) / limited series finale
Ties a nice bow on everything, but should have ended last week, with a newly radicalized Alice (Sarah Paulson) watching in horror as busloads of religious nuts arrive for a counter-rally.

Homecoming – Season 2 (B+ average)
While it’s certainly not as good or as bold as its Julia Roberts-led first season, this is another compelling mystery, with great acting across the board. Janelle Monáe, in her first starring role, is particularly impressive, playing one of the most fascinating, duplicitous characters in recent TV history.

Everybody Loves Raymond (Season 5) – “Marie’s Sculpture” (A-)
Had a chance to browse Universal’s new streaming service Peacock, and while its library and interface aren’t anything to write home about, it does have every episode of the last great multi-cam sitcom. I chose to revisit this classic episode, in which Marie takes a sculpture class and turns out a very “ladylike” piece. Like Seinfeld‘s The Contest, it’s uproariously funny and I still can’t believe a broadcast network let them do it. 20 years on, some of the jokes are a little creaky, but mostly gut-busting.

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