An iconic character inevitably returns to forge a new chapter of the franchise (its fifth overall) that has been going strong since Michael Jackson was a smooth criminal and not, well, you know (also, much more alive). Christopher Meloni returns to stew and simmer as the mercurial Detective Eliot Stabler, and instead of taking out sex offenders, he’s going after the mob. We’ve also got an animated treasure we overlooked on its debut day last week, and an intriguing (and probably very depressing) black comedy about a sociopath who takes stalking to the level of invading his ex-wife’s brain.
Law & Order: Organized Crime [NBC, 10p]
Stabler is baaack! In this two-hour SVU universe crossover event we get to see our fave OG partners cross paths again. This episode will also serve as a premiere for the newest franchise spin off, Organized Crime, where Meloni stars as an officer at NYPD dealing with a devastating loss. In this ep, Benson’s team will help Stabler track down someone threatening his family. This is the reunion I never expected after a decade since Stabler’s abrupt departure –but as someone that spends every weekend binging old SVU eps, one I’m thrilled about.
Made For Love [HBO Max]
A dark comedy with a heavy dose of Black Mirror-esque dystopia, this series has some deft casting and a chilling premise. A tech billionaire implants a chip in his wife’s brain that ties him to her and allows him to watch her and control her reality, even after they’ve broken up.
DOTA: Dragon’s Blood [Netflix]
Dragon’s Blood isn’t just a scent of incense. It’s an anime inspired show based on the astronomically popular video game Dawn of the Ancients. Before you tune out remember, this show was brought to you by the animation studio behind the universally loved The Legend of Korra. This is definitely worth checking out.
BUT, WAIT, THERE’S MORE:
- Like its Australian counterpart, the first season of the American version of The Moodys took place around the Christmas season. As season 2 starts on Fox, the elder Moodys (Elizabeth Perkins & Denis Leary) are now hosting all three of their adult children and no one is happy about it, leading to many well-timed wisecracks. Seriously, it is as if these things were written down for them. But it’s got a great cast including the aforementioned Leary and Perkins along with that man who once sought women, Jay Baruchel.
- Lost without the island returns for a third season as the passengers of the five-year air trip on NBC’s Manifest try to figure out if they are ghosts or part of some nefarious plot.
- From the Seeing America Through The Lens Of One Quirky Attribute genre, we have the docu-series Worn Stories about the tales behind how our most beloved garments became that way, and what it means about our personality and about our society as a whole. It’s on Netflix.
- The latest from Chuck Lorre’s He Probably Means Well But Ugh! collection, CBS’ United States of Al tracks the relationship between a military veteran and his Afghan interpreter who is new to America. Somehow they’ve dragged Breaking Bad‘s Dean Norris into this mess.
- If you peacock Peacock and enjoy stories of sporting triumphs, the NBC streaming offshoot offers the documentary Life, Legacy & Jordan Burroughs about the life of the champion wrestler who coincidentally has that name.
- The Walking Dead’s goremaster Greg Nicotero brings us a second season of the latest version of the classic fright anthology Creepshow–fittingly on Shudder.
- The only gameshow named after a Surfaris hit, the obstacle course challenge that is Wipeout has an added benefit this go-around given that the hosts are charisma embodied in wrestler John Cena and comedian Nicole Byer. If you want to see gangly athletes knocked into water and slipping on balls, while hearing the maximum daily allowance of double-entendres, the action is on TBS.
- So, let us see if we got this straight. First MTV put a bunch of strangers in one loft, then they created drama so that they would stop being polite, get real, etc., then they sent another bunch of people out on the road… later, they would bring these two groups together to engage in weird feats of strength, and now we’re gathering the best of those for the umpteenth time. We mean, yay, The Challenge: All-Stars returns on its new home of Paramount+.
- For a reality competition that makes you nostalgic (and a bit aroused) for the heyday of Ghost, HBO Max has The Great Pottery Throwdown where the OG’s of clay battle with their pitcher, jar, and sculptured animal creations. It’s already in its fourth season.
- Well, there’s Kaufman, Richter, Roddick, Sirkes, Warh… oh, Netflix means the South American mountain range. The new Spanish-language nature documentary Magical Andes captures the beauty and breadth of the region.
- With Bad Trip the number one piece of content on the service, Netflix doubles down on the prankiness of it all as the cruel premise of playing tricks on people who are in search of employment with Prank Encounters which unfortunately has us questioning the judgment of Stranger Things‘ Dustin, Gaten Matarazzo, as the teenaged actor both hosts and produces it.
- All Black Network’s Notorious Queens reads like many in the Group of Flamboyent Women Get Real and Throw Wine genre, but the connective tissue seems to be women who have been at the center of scandal or internet notoriety.