What To Watch: 01/22/2020

Everything’s coming up Awkwafina these days, and it’s a testament to the power of Peak TV that the rapper-turned-comic-turned-actor comes off a Golden Globe nominated and critically feted film to take over television. And we are here for it, to the tune of getting that coveted three-bar recommendation from our WtW slot machine.

KATHERINE’S PICK:
Awkwafina is Nora From Queens [Comedy, 10:30p]
Golden Globe-winning actress Awkwafina stars in this half-hour comedy series as Nora, a woman “striving for a larger than life existence.” If you assumed that Awkwafina was playing a fictionalized version of herself, you’d be right, and I hope we don’t dawdle too long getting to the comedian’s ascent into pop culture through YouTube. The cast is rounded out with BD Wong as Nora’s father, Bowen Yang as her cousin, and Lori Tan Chinn as her grandmother.

NAVANI’S PICK:
Awkwafina is Nora From Queens [Comedy, 10:30p]
Just when I thought nothing would fill the empty void that Broad City ending left in my life, in walks Awkwafina. Nora from Queens is the scripted comedy based on her real-life beginnings in Queens as she’s raised with her techie successful cousin, her dad and grandma in the outer boroughs. Yes, more NYC-based, coming-of-age shenanigans are in store! She is 27 and still living at home I mean what could go wrong here? Or right? Trying to find your purpose is not for the faint of heart.

JASON’S PICK:
Awkwafina is Nora From Queens [Comedy, 10:30p]
Maybe it’s simply the appeal of watching someone who in reality is on top of the world portray a ne-er-do-well, or maybe it’s that I’m a sucker for NYC shows (I’m still inconsolable for missing her run as voice of the 7 train which ends today), but I’m as excited about this show as any 2020 offering — granted we’re only in week 3. Hopefully, the result is more Seinfeld than Mulaney.

ALSO ON TAP TONIGHT:

200122riverdale

  • There are other intriguing returning and new shows, and here’s Brad with the second half start of the fourth season of a Screen Scholar favorite: “To be perfectly honest I kind of forget what was going on with those crazy kids of Riverdale when we last saw them back in the end of 2019, but I’m sure we’ll all get caught up quickly when it returns tonight. Jughead was wrapped up in a conspiracy at a boarding school with Betty (who is scared she may be a serial killer). Archie has been moonlighting as a costumed vigilante.
  • Netflix’s newest horror offering comes in the form of a documentary chronicling one of the real-life villains lurking in the shadows: that of an impermeable, unconquerable form of virus or bacteria that is bound to attack the globe in the next decade (and may already be happening). Pandemic: How To Avoid An Outbreak based on its title would seek to avoid tragedy porn in favor of fueling the quest to ensure we are not caught unprepared.

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