Well, this should be a very memorable week to be in Florida, the battleground state. I will be hosting a get-together here for our Canadian neighbours on Election Night. We have learned to be very circumspect in our comments on the political scene, as many of our neighbours are decidedly conservative in their views. Last year at this time, I couldn’t believe that there was still a year to go of election campaigning. Just today, the Comey revelations appear to be much ado about nothing, to Clinton’s despair, I’m sure. Fingers crossed that the best woman wins. In the meantime here are some recommendations for your viewing pleasure:
On the Big Screen
Both George and I really enjoyed reading the novel A Man Called Ove. We were delighted to be able to attend the film yesterday and I thought it was a great adaptation.It is a wonderful tale about Ove, an ill-tempered, isolated Swedish retiree who spends his days enforcing block association rules and visiting his wife’s grave. He has finally given up on life just as an unlikely friendship develops with his boisterous new neighbours. Bring out your handkerchiefs.
The Crown (10 episodes in season 1) focuses on Queen Elizabeth II as a 25-year-old newlywed faced with the daunting prospect of leading the world’s most famous monarchy while forging a relationship with legendary Prime Minister, Sir Winston Churchill. The British Empire is in decline, the political world is in disarray, and a young woman takes the throne…a new era is dawning. Peter Morgan’s masterfully researched scripts reveal the Queen’s private journey behind the public facade with daring frankness. Prepare to be welcomed into the coveted world of power and privilege and behind locked doors in Westminster and Buckingham Palace…the leaders of an empire await. We’ve watched the first 5 episodes of this wonderful series and I am going to savour the rest. It will be a long time before something this beautifully produced will appear again.
Hulu and Streaming
Chance continues to air episodes of this thriller starring Hugh Laurie and Gretchen Mol. Very noir.
Goliath continues to air episodes of this series starring Billy Bob Thornton, William Hurt and Maria Bello. A disgraced lawyer, now an ambulance chaser, gets a case that could bring him redemption or at least revenge on the firm which expelled him.
Sunday night is ruled by PBS with The Durrells in Corfu, Poldark, and Indian Summers. All three are wonderful series. People who say there is nothing of quality on TV are sadly missing out on these gems.
The Walking Dead (Sundays) is trying to vary its tone from the terribly sad and violent opening episode of this season. Harrowing and gruelling to watch, this post apocalyptic tale of zombies threatening what’s left of mankind is not for everyone. Having started this journey, and stuck with it for 6 seasons, I can’t look away until this terrible tale comes to an end.
Westworld and Masters of Sex both air on Sunday nights. Again, quality television that is worth watching. Divorce with Sara Jessica Parker is a comedy that is written by the same author as Catastrophe. While not nearly as funny, it is worth a look. Also on Sunday night is Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. This show has been praised for its terrific analysis of public affairs issues and Oliver has great fun poking fun at the US political scene. Friday night’s political comedy comes from Real Time with Bill Maher. He actually had an interview with President Obama this past week. It was also a great pleasure to see former Canadians Martin Short and David Frum opine on the presidential campaign.
Younger (Thursdays) is a great show about a 40 something woman masquerading as a 26 year old millennial in order to get a job in publishing. Great fun as it pokes fun at technology and the world of millennials. Sutton Foster is the lead and she is endearing.
Better Things (Thursdays) is a great series about a working actress in Hollywood who is also a single mom raising three daughters. Funny and touching. The great Celia Imrie plays the grandmother.
You’re the Worst (Wednesdays) is about mismatched hipsters in LA. It was wonderful and fresh when it started, but I have tired of it and don’t know how much longer I will hang in with it.
The Good Place (Thursdays) is delightful as it tells the story of a young woman who has mistakenly ended up in Heaven, when she really deserves to be in Hell.
Chicago Fire (Tuesdays) is my unabashedly guilty pleasure show. Hunky firemen and ridiculous subplots abound.
The Blacklist (Thursdays) has run around in circles re the lead character’s parentage. I don’t care anymore. Just give Tom his own show!!!
Saturday Night Live (Saturdays at 11:30) has used Alec Baldwin to portray Donald Trump this season and he has done a great job. Benedict Cumberbatch tried his best this week to prove he is funny, but the writing defeated him in most of the sketches he was in.
Full Frontal with Samantha Bee will be showing its last pre-election episode on Monday night. Bee is wonderful at making devastating comments about the electoral process.
People of Earth (Tuesdays) debuted last week and is a hilarious sitcom about a support group for people who believe they are alien abductee survivors. Very cute.
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (nightly at 11:35) has been fabulous in the run-up to the election. There will be a live show on SHOWTIME this Tuesday night.
The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Mon-Thurs at 11:00) has also done a great job leading up to the election.
Arrow (Wednesdays) has me hooked and I only have one explanation. Stephen Amell is the lead and he is deliciously Canadian.
Designated Survivor (Wednesdays) stars Kiefer Sutherland as a man who didn’t want to be President who has the job thrust upon him. Still intriguing.
It’s shaping up to be a busy week. Between Mahjong, 3 golf games, a variety of exercise classes, and dinners with friends (not to mention the election night party), we’ll be very busy. The weather has been perfect, although this weekend’s time change means sunset is shockingly early despite the balmy weather. What’s up with that? For those in the North, stay warm and we will see you in December. For our southern neighbours, enjoy this beautiful weather and let’s all hope that we don’t live to regret Tuesday’s election.