What to Watch This Weekend: Errol Morris and ‘The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’
Leave your TV schedule in our hands.
Welcome to Watch This Weekend, where every Friday, Darian Lusk, comedian and writer living large in Brooklyn—will gently recommend a roundup of things to watch and stream. Follow him on Twitter @eatpraylusk to send suggestions for future installments.
When Maroon 5 penned the American standard Never Going To Leave This Bed, did they know it would so perfectly apply to this weekend?
We’ve entered the time of year when it is socially acceptable (err, even more socially acceptable) to not emerge from a sarcophagus of blankets for three days at a time. So to celebrate, here is an Advent calendar of delectable candied content for the weekend ahead.
From a — shall we say — marvelous series about a rising comedienne in the 1950s to Errol Morris’ new Netflix offering, you will love these trending shows. Also, better to watch now because Net Neutrality is gone soon and the end (of the year) is coming!
Tru TV: At Home With Amy Sedaris (10:30/9:30C)
Being a homemaker and entertaining guests isn’t easy. Luckily, Amy Sedaris — Princess Carolyn on Bojack Horseman, co-creator of cult hit Strangers With Candy and national treasure — has you covered from head to “tater toes” (shoes made out of baked potatoes — you’ll see.)
On her completely unhinged, hilarious Tru TV show, Amy lets us into her home, a version of her apartment in N.Y.C., and bestows unto us the sacred art of crafting, cooking and hosting. But with a put-googly-eyes-on-everything spin.
On each episode, Amy invites over a coterie of neighbors and frenemies, from Nick Kroll to Stephen Colbert to, well, a disguised Amy Sedaris (this happens a lot). And it all culminates in — what else? — some take-home life lessons. Amy’s take on retro hospitality shows is a welcome piece of escapism; she’s the Home Ec teacher we wish we always had. And it’s is a true labor of love, as Amy has actually written two sincere books on the topic.
Amazon Prime: The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel (Added Nov. 28)
From Amy Sherman Palladino, the showrunner behind Gilmore Girls and (personal fave) Bunheads, comes this acclaimed comedy that’ll add a ray of sunshine to your weekend. Miriam “Midge” Maisel has the perfect husband, kids and Upper West Side apartment — but things are thrown into upheaval when she gets tipsy on kosher wine (uh oh) and discovers a knack for stand up comedy.
While making a show about stand-up is notoriously difficult (see I’m Dying Up Here, Crashing, countless others), by choosing to make this an almost surreal period piece and placing a strong woman at the helm, Marvelous Mrs. Maisel kills. Palladino’s mile-a-minute writing fits this show perfectly, Rachel Brosnahan stuns as its star and there are plenty of Gilmore Girls easter eggs for the #truefans. And the coats are fantastic!
The pilot aired back in March and based on its merits, Amazon picked up the show for two seasons; a blessing.
MTV Floribama Shore (Mondays 10/9C)
Missing the early 2010s? Same. While we don’t have a new Gotye album or Avatar sequel YET, our Jersey Shore successor, MTV Floribama Shore (yes, “MTV” is in the title), is here.
Set along the forgotten realm of North Florida’s Panama City Beach, the series which hit cable with a bed-urinating bang last month, is now on its fourth episode. Following a group of eight castmates that range from Gus, a perpetually drunk Goku who left home at 17, to Aimee, a perpetually drunk spiritual sister to Honey Boo Boo, this show attempts to follow in the footsteps of its predecessor’s glory. But of course, we can never really go back.
In an attempt to gel with our current political climate, this “Shore” is disappointingly absent of Southern culture (it effectively takes place only at night) and also devoid of politics, which is probably a good thing given the cast. But, the trashy comfort of the franchise is as alive as ever, with prayers before meals (which is nice), tequila and blue Gatorade flowing graciously and cast members calling their breasts “chi-chis.” I say watch it.
Fans of Making A Murderer and The Jinx largely have Errol Morris to thank, as the legendary filmmaker started a docuseries revolution with his 1988 film The Thin Blue Line. Now, we’re going back to the source with Morris’s new mind-bending Netflix original series, Wormwood. Part 1 premieres Friday.
The six-part show follows the true story of a mysterious death and a potential government cover-up in a groundbreaking way. With a mixture of testimonies and dramatic reenactments that are only sometimes true, we are never sure what to believe. This show could be extremely popular and also sneak in as a last-minute addition to some end-of-year lists. Plus, it stars Peter Sarsgaard. Actually make that a huge plus.
SyFy: Channel Zero: No End House (Added Sep. 20)
SyFy is starting to expand its scripted content, and they’re on the right track with this wonderful horror series from Nick Antosca that uses internet stories from CreepyPasta to spawn its tales.
Channel Zero: No End House, the second chapter in the franchise, follows four friends who check out this new haunted house everyone in town is talking about. But when they go in, will they ever leave? And do they want to?
No End House offers alternate realities, family members re-emerging from the grave and one very alluring orb. Also, it deals expertly in heavier topics like the value of memories and romantic manipulation. With surprisingly complex character arcs and solid acting, I was very impressed by this show that’s putting SyFy and its creator Antosca on the map.
Spotify: N.E.R.D. “No One Ever Really Dies” (Out Dec. 14)
Pharrell is one of our most non-controversial celebrities. He’s basically the Mr. Rogers of the neo-soul genre. And we’re in for a much-needed dose this week in the form of N.E.R.D, his original band, dropping their first album in 16 years.
No One Ever Really Dies offers the musical stylings we love from Pharrell (think “Come Get it Bae”) mixed with the social urgency a record in 2017 always benefits from. The first single, “Lemon” is a blast that features Rihanna rapping, which adds to anything. And on Wednesday the group dropped a Kendrick Lamar collab with Frank Ocean in the producer chair, entitled “Don’t Don’t Do It.” Other guest features include MIA and Future, and I have a feeling you’ll find a few songs to enjoy.
Our Favorite Products Right Now