With two buzzed-about awards shows coming
up this week — Sunday’s VMAs and the Emmys on Monday — this space would
typically be dedicated to one of those. In a selfish but necessary
decision, I must instead turn to True Blood, which ends its seventh and final season this week.
Chris Lilley is a master of disguise. The
Aussie multi-hyphenate creates, writes, directs and stars in
mockumentary-style comedies in which he plays a collection of diverse
characters — sometimes all at once.
While The Knick is a drama, written by Jack Amiel and
Michael Begler, its basis is in true medical history with the earliest
surgeons at the start of the 20th century. Director Steven Soderbergh paints a
beautifully grotesque picture of New York’s Knickerbocker Hospital, with
imagery that leaves viewers covering their eyes … only to peek through
For the past four years, comedians Jonah
Ray and Kumail Nanjiani have hosted a weekly show from NerdMelt, a small
space in the back of Los Angeles comic book shop Meltdown. Launched by
Chris Hardwick (creator of blog/podcast-turned-digital entertainment
network The Nerdist; Talking Dead host) — NerdMelt may not be
your typical L.A. comedy club.
Last week’s fourth season premiere of The Walking Dead was the first offering from new showrunner Scott
Gimple. He and others involved in the series have expressed a desire to
incorporate more character development, leaving some fans worried that
dull human storylines could get in the way of epic zombie scenes (who
could forget the painfully slow second season?). Judging by the first
episode, however, this is not the case.
American Horror Story: Coven (Series Premiere, 10 p.m. Wednesday, FX), as the subtitle suggests, is all about witches. Of course, this is no Hocus Pocus
— the series will jump across time and the country to feature
modern-day witchcraft, 19th-century Voodoo and the Salem witch trials.
In present day, witches are rare and in danger.
The Primetime Emmy Awards (8 p.m. Sunday,
CBS) celebrate the stars of the small screen and while the spotlight is
on the television shows, it’s always telling to see who’s been chosen
to host these grand ceremonies. Neil Patrick Harris will “suit up” (as
his TV character Barney Stinson would say) this year to host Sunday’s
program, a task he’s certainly prepared for.
The motorcycle gang thriller that’s subtly influenced by the story of Hamlet — Sons of Anarchy (10
p.m. Tuesdays, FX) — returned Sept. 10 for its sixth and penultimate
season. President of biker club SAMCRO Jax Teller must remain true to
himself as he balances smart moves for the club against what is safe for
his family’s future.
As HBO’s gripping period piece Boardwalk Empire
(Season Premiere, 9 p.m. Sunday) returns for a fourth season, months
have passed since last year’s explosive finale. It’s February 1924.
Nucky Thompson has been lying low, eventually making peace with mob boss
Starting Monday, FX spawns a new young adult network, dubbed FXX. FX’s hit comedies It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and The League will make the jump to the new network along with the nightly talk show Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell.