What I Watched This Week: 30 Nov 2014

Brooklyn Nine-Nine – “The Road Trip” (A)
The best episode of the season, complete with a break-up, a cooking class and thousands of creepy dolls. As much as I love Eva Longoria (something I never thought I’d say), I’m excited by the new wrinkle in Jake and Amy’s will they-won’t they.

The Newsroom – “Contempt” (B-)
Last week I talked about how grand speechifying, like the kind Sorkin loves, doesn’t work if the actors aren’t fully committed. Sometimes, that’s not the case. John Gallagher, Jr. gives it his all in that rooftop scene, but the words he’s delivering sound like they were poorly translated from another language. (“I’m not talking about the apparatus!”) All season, Sorkin has been railing against non-professionals screwing things up and taking a hatchet to social networking (how ironic), but that agenda doesn’t fit in here. At least there’s a wedding. Oh, wait, that was kind of anti-climactic. And the big trial I was hoping for? We’re stuck with a few weak grand jury scenes. But yes, there are some great moments, the kind that only Sorkin is capable of. Maybe he can right this ship in the last two episodes?

The Mindy Project – “What About Peter?” (C+)
A sad regression from what I’ve loved about Mindy this season. There are some funny gags (Danny’s obsession with backsplash tile), but this episode was pretty shapeless, featuring a truly awful subplot about Jeremy having to take care of his girlfriend’s baby doing the old “he laughs when you hurt yourself” routine. Kind of an unceremonious beginning of the end for Adam Pally on this show.

The Wire (Season 2) – “Duck and Cover” (A-)
We get back to the basic investigative thrills of Season One, with a plot-heavy episode that’s also an acting showcase for Dominic West. He’s a true son of a bitch up until the last 10 minutes, when he finally thinks with his actual brain.

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