What To Watch: 12/04/2020

There is an absolute deluge in new content tonight, whether you’re talking about streaming, network TV, or cable. And from the wholesome goofarounds of Disney to the hormonal raunch of Nick Kroll’s torn-asunder teens, from David Fincher’s latest thriller to the life story of one of the 20th Century’s greatest music legends, there’s no shortage of choices for all kinds of taste levels. So without further ado, let’s get into it.

NAVANI’S PICK:
Selena: The Series [Netflix]
25 years after her death, Selena’s star still shines bright. Now adoring fans get to spend a little more time with her. In the new 9-episode series we’ll get a chance to relive her rise to stardom. For those who think “well we’ve seen this story before,” the difference is this series will focus more on her rise to fame and the world she came up in, as opposed to dwelling on her tragic ending. There is a lot more time here to paint a fuller picture of who Selena really was. It will touch on things like why she had to sing in Spanish and the moment her father knew she had a special musical ability. Spoiler alert: there will be baby Selena! Swoon! But even bigger that that, Selena’s story comes down to creating a space for yourself where there wasn’t one before and that theme is still very timely for many of us today.

KATHERINE’S PICK:
Big Mouth [Netflix]
Netflix’s delightfully vulgar comedy about puberty returns for its fourth season. Maya Rudolph’s hormone monster is sure to deliver holiday cheer. And now there’s Anxiety Mosquitos.

BRAD’S PICK:
Mank [Netflix]
David Fincher’s latest film centers around Herman J. Mankiewicz as he races to finish Citizen Kane. Mankiewicz may not be a household name, but this movie should up his profile considerably. Shot in glorious black and white this is an examination of 1930s Hollywood that should resonate with modern audiences.

JASON’S PICK:
Godmothered [Disney+]
An Enchanted for fairy godmothers, this lush Disney flick stars Jillian Bell as an apprentice fairy godmother who has all the spirit in the world for her chosen path, but, well, she’s a Jillian Bell character, so none of her plans (or spells) go quite as planned. She finds her person, played by the always appealing Isla Fisher, and sets to fixing her life only to… well, you can guess how it goes. The reviews aren’t great, but it looks charming and it has Bell and Fisher and Jane Curtin as the head of godmother school, so it’s worth a shot.  

BUT, WAIT, THERE’S MORE:

  • John Boyega stars as Leroy Logan, founder of the UK’s Black Police Association, in the third of Steve McQueen’s five-movie series about life in the Jamaican section of London. Small Axe: Red, White, and Blue lands on Amazon Prime tonight.
  • Also new on Prime, Riz Ahmed plays a punk/metal drummer who is having trouble coping with losing his hearing and what that might mean for his music, lifestyle, and even his sanity in Sound of Metal which won the Platform Prize at TIFF.
  • HBO reigns supreme at both documentaries and the sport of boxing, so why would we not want to watch Macho: The Hector Camacho Story detailing the life and too-early death of a champion whose professional career was a rollercoaster ride, but who could always be counted on to bring a delightfully clownish spirit and flamboyant fashion eye to the ring, until his life ended suddenly in 2012 in his native Puerto Rico when he was shot and killed in his car in a still unsolved crime.
  • The latest teen classic to get the gritty reboot is the story of those plucky motherless sibling detectives named Frank and Joe. The Hardy Boys debuts on Hulu and finds the pair dealing with even more gruesome deaths than usual.
  • Also getting the gritty reboot treatment are Paul, Pru, Noel, and Matt as they troll the underground baking mafia, taking on the most vicious of pastry rings, determined to kill all of London through poorly proofed butter tarts. Or maybe I’m reading that wrong and they gently critique the baked goods of kindly amateur bakers, but this time in festive sweaters, on The Great British Baking Show: Holiday Edition which joins the Netflix line-up tonight.
  • If you’ve been bemoaning the fact that nature documentaries do not offer images of the nocturnal habits of our animal buddies as if it were light as day, well, you’ve got very specific tastes. And you’re in luck as Apple TV has released the straightforwardly titled Earth at Night in Color.
  • The woman with the second most number one hits in the history of the Billboard Hot 100 (just one behind The Beatles) gets her first holiday special on Apple TV, Mariah Carey’s Magical Christmas Special. Now if only she had some sort of #1 hit song about the season that she might want to sing on it. We were going to say something more catty, but ultimately it’s Mariah, and we just can’t hate on her. That much, anyway.
  • Appealing to not much different of a fanbase, we also have The Hollywood Christmas Parade: Greatest Moments on The CW. We could not find the current promo, but we figure you will probably enjoy a 1988 promo for the long-running event. There’s a starwipe featuring the Hollywood star for Santa Claus!
  • We’re pretty sure that the latest Lifetime Holiday flick Too Close For Christmas isn’t about a busy businesswoman who returns to her hometown to meet-cute her high school boyfriend Alex Clare who is re-tooling that one hit song for Christmas in a rugged, authentically heartland manner, but watch and find out. Well, actually we just watched the trailer, and other than the Alex Clare part, we were pretty on the nose.

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