What To Watch: 09/08/2022

Rose Salazar, who has been giving tour de force performances in both the underrated semi-animated Undone and her own Brand New Cherry Flavor (both critical darlings, bee tee dubs), takes the lead in one of the most intriguing rom-coms of 2022. And it’s a busy day all over, including a supremely well-cast new version of the classic tale of a puppet come to life, Matthew Fox’s return to television for the first time since he got LOST on an island for six years, the return of an underappreciated law spinoff, and that’s not even mentioning America’s most popular sport starting its 103rd season, and at least one Scholar is about as excited as he’s ever been. Oh, and it’s Disney Plus Day, so you know there’s some cool Marvel, Simpsons, and Star Wars extras going on.

KATHERINE’S PICK:
Wedding Season [Hulu]
This “genre-busting” series (OK, Hulu) starts as a rom-com and ends as a thriller when a couple falls in love at a wedding, begins an affair, and goes on the run when one of their families is murdered. The police think he did it, and he thinks she did it! Could be fun, or could be the derivative “women are evil, too,” drivel we’ve been fed for a while.

JASON’S PICK:
Pinocchio [Disney+]
While if I had a wish upon a star, a new version of this classic tale would not be in my top thousand options, but that does not mean this latest animated reimagination featuring the voices of Joseph Gordon-Leavitt, Cynthia Errivo, Keegan-Michael Key, and Tom Hanks is not welcome. Ok, there’s a schadenfraudey part of me that wants to see if the venerable and beloved Hanks can make it two-for-two in 2022 for over-the-top, heavily-accented performances.

JASON’S REAL PICK:
NFL Thursday Night Football: Buffalo Bills @ Los Angeles Rams [NBC, 7p]
While, yes, I do find the Disney+ retelling of a classic story with a great cast appealing and I will eventually watch it and sincerely recommend it, there’s no chance I’m watching anything else tonight but the kickoff of NFL Football–especially given that my long-suffering favorite team is visiting the Super Bowl champions… with the Bills favored both in the game and to win the Super Bowl. As a lifelong Buffalo Bills fan, I gotta tell you, it’s a weird-ass feeling (less shame?). Beyond that, you know what it is, it’s one of the two footballs that have kept non-streaming TV a thing, and America’s primary tradition and religion. The NFL, flawed beyond belief as it is, is back. Go Bills!

BRAD’S PICK:
Marvel Studios Assembled: The Making of Thor: Love & Thunder/Obi-Wan Kenobi: A Jedi Returns [Disney+]
Disney+ day is here so for this into your schedule.Marvel continues its series of behind-the-scenes specials. This new one focuses on the most recent blockbuster Thor: Love and Thunder. The interviews are informative and fun, and that is just what i expected from a movie directed by nerd king Taika Waititi.  The new Star Wars featurette has been hyped by Disney for a bit now–a step beyond what the streaming service usually does to promote their making-of documentaries. Most fans felt that there was really something special about the Obi -Wan series and now we can see how it all came together. Even if you don’t like where Star Wars has gone this is worth a watch.

BUT, WAIT, THERE’S MORE:

  • After six years of constantly having to go back to “the island,” it’s understandable that Matthew Fox would desire a break, but eight years… It’s good to have him back in series-star form with Peacock’s Last Light. This one’s plays off one of the less discussed of the many end-of-civilization scene as Fox’s oil scientist discovers that there is something wrong with the world’s supply…. just before its consequences start to be felt and everything falls apart, leaving Fox and his friends to try to put it back together (you can count on that!).
  • Owen Wilson and Larry the Cable Guy reprise their Cars roles as Speed McQueen and Mater in the spinoff series Cars on the Road. Hopefully, McQueen will not be going down the same dirtbag path as in this darkly hilarious SNL sketch.
  • If you see one Shudder flick this year, check out the West Africa-based thriller Saloum in which mercenaries attempting to abduct a drug kingpin wind up in the Senegal desert and amidst the intrigue and double-crossing, they discover they are not alone. Its a unique premise and after 19 critics, it’s at 100% on Rotten Tomatoes.
  • Diane Lockhart deserves her slot along with Saul Goodman, Gus Fring, Mike Ehrmentraut, Detective Munch, George Jefferson and Frasier Crane in the all-time top five characters who span multiple series. Somehow, the legal spinoff starring Christine Baranski’s iconic character, The Good Fight, keeps on fighting the… well. In the sixth season, in addition to the usual crew, Alan Cumming’s Eli Gold returns and the incomparable Andre Braugher joins the cast as Ri’Chard Lane, who Braugher describes as “an energetic, intelligent, compassionate lawyer.” Jason wants to point out that Baranski is a rabid Buffalo Bills fans and he adds “Go Bills!”
  • We’re quietly approaching the anniversary of that day–it will be 21 years come Sunday–and the first major commemoration we’ve come across is the Netflix examination of a different attack a few weeks later which tends to get overlooked. The Anthrax Attacks: In the Shadow of 9/11 starts streaming today.
  • In Hulu’s Korean reality import The Zone: Survival Mission the goal is just that, to not die. It had to happen eventually. OK, it’s actually in virtual reality, but still, that day will come.
  • While they don’t always get great reviews and we know they are essentially just Disney+ adds to celebrate their own special day, if you can turn off your judgy nerd mind for one second, there’s usually something fun about new Simpsons shorts. The latest offering from the longest running scripted show on television is The Simpsons: Welcome to the Club. And that is the way we choose to end this story.

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