What I Watched This Week: 5 Sep 2021

Reservation Dogs – “Hunting” (A)
Another standout episode that focuses on one character, deepening our understanding appreciation of that one, while expanding the world and its complex emotions.

What We Do in the Shadows – “Gail” (A-)
The first half feels a little choppy, but once we get to the big reveal about the secret identity of Gail (guest star Aida Turturro), the show takes flight – literally for some characters – and features one of the best parodies ever.

Ted Lasso – “Man City” (A)
Now that’s more like it. This is an episode all about vulnerability. And while it can lead to deeper relationships and emotional growth, at first it really fucking hurts. Thankfully, this show doesn’t gloss over that.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine
“Game of Boyles” (A)
“Renewal” (A-)
Once again, the show is at its strongest when it’s not trying to make up for seven seasons of saying “Not all cops.” But these are otherwise two hilarious episodes that play to its silly strengths.

Ted Lasso – “Headspace” (B)
Part of the joy of this show is how nice its characters are, even in conflicts. So why is everyone suddenly acting like a prick?

What We Do in the Shadows
“The Prisoner” (B+) / season premiere
“The Cloak of Duplication” (A-)
The premiere has to spend a lot of time reminding everyone of what happened last season, since it feels like it’s been an eternity. That means we get fewer jokes. But the addition of Kristen Schaal is a welcome one, and the second episode is right back to being as demented as ever.

A.P. Bio – Season 4 (A- average)
As a season-long arc – one in which Jack loses a lot – it’s a remarkably touching bit of television, though in the finale itself, his emotional epiphany is a bit rushed. Still, I hope this show gets at least one more season, or keeps running forever. I’ll be happy either way, especially if it keeps pulling off such inspired silliness as “Tornado!” and the utter devastation of “Tons of Rue.”

Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace (A average)
For nearly 15 years, I’ve heard of the great, inspired lunacy of this British comedy, a sci-fi/horror parody of hospital dramas and self-involved creatives. Somehow, it lived up to the hype. This is one of the absolute funniest things I’ve ever seen on television.

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