What I Watched This Week: 29 Sep 2019

Saturday Night Live – “Woody Harrelson/Billie Eilish” (C+) / season premiere
All my hopes of new cast members and Alec Baldwin’s public threats to quit the show were dashed in the cold open, which was just a bunch of pathetic impersonations, plus references to Ray Donovan and the “Wasssssupppppppp” ads from 20 years ago. At least the Democratic debate was better, and a couple goofy sketches worked for me. But it seems like we’re in for a long season. At least Phoebe Waller-Bridge is up next week.

The Righteous Gemstones – “And Yet One of You Is a Devil” (B+)
The emotions are more pronounced this week, and the show wimps out on the heist, instead giving us an intense armed robbery. Yet I can’t help but wondering how much better the show would be if there were 20 percent more jokes.

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia – “Thunder Gun 4: Maximum Cool” (B-)
Goes back to the Thunder Gun well one too many times, as they try to “fix” the reboot of the film. A few funny lines, but it can’t help but feel like “been there, done that.”

The Good Place – “A Girl from Arizona, Part 2” (B+)
Eleanor has a crisis of confidence, as her attempts to snap Brent out of his extreme entitlement fail. But even after telling off her pals (“Stick your fat grumps up your snorkbox!”), she’s persuaded to continue by Michael. He doesn’t understand humans; she does. They’ll all have to learn to persevere this season.

Breaking Bad – Season 5
“Ozymandias” (A+)
“Granite State” (A)
“Felina” (A)
Rewatched the final three episodes of the series in preparation for El Camino. Even though I hadn’t seen them since their original broadcast, I still remembered a ton of details about each episode. “Ozymandias” is probably the greatest single hour of television this decade, and the finale was still extremely satisfying. But I was completely turned around on “Granite State,” which I found a bit boring at the time. But it’s absolutely brilliant in its depiction of a broken man, who has more money than he could ever spend, and absolutely no way to spend it on something he actually wants. In the end, so thin his wedding ring has fallen off his finger, he’s paying his fixer $10,000 just to spend one hour with him and play cards. “I guess I got what I deserved” indeed.

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