Can We Talk?

We need to talk about pop culture, especially the parts that are awful.

Shut It Down

Farewell, Liz Lemon.

Farewell, Liz Lemon.

I realize that today is only January 30th, but it is the final post in our January marathon of TV recommendations, since it’s about a show that’s on tomorrow, the last day of the month. And for this last recommendation of the month, I think it’s only appropriate to finish off with a finale rather than a premiere, especially since it’s my beloved 30 Rock that’s taking its final bow.

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Felicity Turns Secret Agent

Keri Russell & Matthew Rhys star in the new Cold War show The Americans.

Keri Russell & Matthew Rhys star in the new Cold War show The Americans.

I’ll admit I don’t have a great deal to contribute to a discussion about The Americans, FX’s new Cold War-era series, having not seen any of the show apart from the trailers & promos. But I think it looks pretty cool, and if features Keri Russell as a seemingly bad-ass Russian spy, much more of a Buffy type than a Felicity, so that’s good news (in fairness, I never watched Felicity, but she always came across like a bit of a drip).

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Just the Facts

David Attenborough harasses a hedgehog.

David Attenborough harasses a hedgehog.

Tomorrow’s another night with no premieres on TV, so I’m going back to the Netflix vault for my official recommendation of what to watch. There are a lot of really cool documentaries available there, so I have four suggestions for you in different categories.

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Meet the Belchers

bobs burgersSo if you watched Archer last week like I told you to (and shame on you if you didn’t; that’s the whole point of this blog, that I’m right about everything and you should follow my advice), you might have been puzzled by the opening scene, and the plot of the rest of the episode. If so, then you should also be ashamed, because it means you haven’t been watching Bob’s Burgers and didn’t realize that it was a crossover between two of the funniest animated shows on television. And while the third season of Bob’s Burgers has been on since the fall, there is a new episode tomorrow, and you should watch it if you want to avoid having me reprimand you in the future.

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Slow Saturday

It’s going to be a short post today, my friends. There are no premieres tomorrow night, but we’re gearing up to a really awesome one next Monday, I promise. That’s going to be one of the best nights of television you experience all year (assuming you heed my advice about what to watch), so fasten your seatbelts; it’s going to be a bumpy night.

In the meantime, Saturday is, not surprisingly, something of a dead zone for TV. But Game of Thrones will be back before too long, so if you’ve missed the boat on the show, now’s a good a time as any to catch up. Use tomorrow to track down the first two seasons on DVD or whatever means you can, trying your absolute hardest to act within the law. Then fill up a flagon of ale, and settle in for a marathon viewing so that you’ll be caught up once new episodes start airing on HBO on March 31. It simply won’t do to appear baffled when your friends are chatting and saying things like, “I can’t believe what the Imp did last night!” or debating whether Diana Rigg (playing the Queen of Thorns in the new season) is more of a badass than Maggie Smith over on Downton Abbey.

You could also read the books in George R.R. Martin’s series, though that will take a LOT longer and involves slogging through a lot of descriptions of medieval-style feasts and detailed accounts of how long it takes to travel a long distance on a horse (spoiler: a while).

The Bitch Isn’t Back

The cast of Don't Trust the B in Apartment 23

The cast of Don’t Trust the B in Apartment 23

ABC has jettisoned another funny show with a silly name, and this one didn’t have the good fortune to land safely on the shores of TBS. That’s right, the network that apparently has no problem airing The goddamn Middle announced earlier this week that they were pulling the plug on Don’t Trust the B—- in Apartment 23, which is a bummer. Since there aren’t any fun premieres to watch tomorrow (unless you feel like watching Spartacus: War the Damned on Starz), I’m devoting today’s post to mourning the loss of Don’t Trust the B.

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Reality TV and the Boundless Potential of a Clean Slate

The one, the only Tim Gunn

The one, the only Tim Gunn

I was a bit hesitant to officially recommend a new season of Project Runway. Like many reality shows, it’s starting to show its age, and it can be hard to get excited about the latest go-round, especially when they’ve made it to an eleventh season, and we haven’t had a chance to miss it since Lifetime started airing all-star seasons of the show in between the regular ones. Still, the ineffable Tim Gunn tells Time that this is his favorite season yet, so let’s give it a shot and see if the aging series can—say it with me—make it work.

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A Callow, Greedy, Retarded Person

My hero

My hero

My initial thought for today’s post was to write about American Horror Story, since the second season finale is on tomorrow, and that seems worth a recommendation. It was a silly idea, because I haven’t even seen a full episode of the show, but it did get me thinking about Ryan Murphy, which got me thinking about Popular, his first TV show, which didn’t come remotely close to the kind of recognition that some of his subsequent series—Nip/TuckGleeAmerican Horror Story—have received.

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Quivering with Anticipation

Anthony Bourdain and Nigella Lawson are sure to be entertaining judges on The Taste.

Anthony Bourdain and Nigella Lawson are sure to be entertaining judges on The Taste.

Do we really need another cooking competition show, strictly speaking? No, I don’t think we do. Still, I’m going to recommend that you watch The Taste tomorrow night, because it seems like it could be the fresh, invigorating The Voice to Top Chef’s flagging American Idol. Did I explain that right? I fear I got turned around mid-analogy, but what I mean is that, like American Idol, Top Chef has grown stale and uninspired, and The Taste could be a refreshing alternative to the old standby.

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