Fresh Off the Boat – A
In a stellar episode which provided genuine laughs, Jessica chaperones a field trip to Colonial Floridatown and is, for the first time in Eddie’s life, the Fun Mom. (Jessica LOVES Colonial America.) In Jessica’s defense, trying to keep Eddie on track doesn’t allow any time to be fun anyway. Louis inadvertently gives bad advice to Emery, and both learn to be themselves, popularity be damned. Louis, who has been pretending to enjoy high-brown cinema, apparently hadn’t mistakenly rented “The Conformist.”
– Katherine M. Hill
The Grinder – A
The Grinder plays the meta as the long con, so we should have noticed that the role of defeated lawyer in episode one was a bit of a waste of Kumail Nanjiani — the king of the sort of sarcastic side commentary on which this show thrives. Of COURSE Vallence is the mysterious force behind bumbling Cory Manler’s malpractice case against Dean, Sr., and even more of course, there’s a reason we’ve only seen one half of one of TV’s most familiar twin actors. This magnificent series keeps up its unlikely combo of sitcom skewering voice and surprisingly genuine warmth, and even amps it up through a first season finale that hits all the trope notes, and over the closing credits, deftly comments on its own growing pains (I mean, those of Sanderson & Yao of course) and how its set itself up, despite its struggles, for more seasons…I mean clients, yes, clients. More reasons why you should watch this clever show’s first season, and then inevitably lobby for its unlikely renewal, here.
– Jason Thurston