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Fall Arts 2015: Television 

Wednesday, Sep 2 2015

Welcome to what is probably the least-exciting fall season in television's history — though not much could compete with the unveiling of The Love Boat and Fantasy Island on the same night, now could it? Brace yourself for a lot of hype over what are essentially Game of Thrones knock-offs and "Who Am I, What Am I Doing Here, And Why Am I Tattooed With The Name of an FBI Agent On My Back?"-type thriller-mysteries. And someone had to give Neil Patrick Harris his own goddamn variety show. The more cultured among us will be watching the following:

Longmire (Netflix)
Sept. 10
A&E's brilliant slow-burn of a series about the county sheriff of a remote Wyoming county fizzled out after three seasons, but an increasingly enterprising Netflix picked it up. This is a good old-fashioned TV show, full of well-developed characters and a whisper of menace.

The Muppets (ABC)
Sept. 22
The Muppets were meta before it was trendy, with their "constant self-referential breaking down of the fourth wall" — to borrow a line from that most erudite theater critic, Fozzie Bear. It makes sense that the reboot of The Muppet Show would include single-camera work à la The Office, and reality TV-style, behind-the-scenes footage of the Muppets' lives. (This is even more meta when you consider that they are actually felt props with hands up their butts, and those hands are connected to people who presumably have lives behind the scenes.) Throw in the clever humor that's always been aimed at adults, and I really hope this show works.

American Dream/American Nightmare (Showtime)
Sept. 26
This documentary about Suge Knight has the same title as his autobiography, which means it has to be full of bullshit — he's been pretty good about avoiding a life sentence up 'til now, so why push the issue — but it's going to be interesting nonetheless. This film includes footage from him, so I'm guessing that unlike, say, a Lifetime biopic, this one is "authorized." But considering what the movie Straight Outta Compton got away with in its Knight portrayal, there could be some meat here.

San Francisco 2.0 (HBO)
Sept. 28
Gather around the tee-vee in the tiny studio you share with seven roommates to watch HBO's apocalyptic documentary tale about how Silicon Valley douchebags improved your coffee selections but ruined your chance of ever affording to live in San Francisco. I, for one, am eagerly anticipating all the righteous indignation it will stir in me. Hurrah!

E.O. Wilson of Ants and Men (PBS)
Sept. 30
You may think you're a geek, but you ain't a real geek until you study myrmercology (ants!). I learned from biologist E.O. Wilson that I only love my mother because of biological altruism, the idea that if we put others before ourselves we will continue the species, something he witnessed in ants. Aww. It's still OK to hate the little bastards when they colonize your slow cooker, though. Or your mother when she turns tricks in front of you, thereby feeding your twisted desire to become a serial killer. It's all part of nature's awe-inspiring web.

The Unauthorized Beverly Hills 90210/Melrose Place (Lifetime)
Oct. 3 and 10
Admit it, you watch all of these Lifetime rehashes even though each one is worse than the one that came before it. I can't figure out what would be juicy about the Melrose one, but we all know that 90210's Shannon Doherty was an über-bitch in real life. Now that she's revealed that she has breast cancer, the crass timing of her public shaming seems a bit, well, Lifetime Movie.

SuperMansion (Crackle)
Oct. 8
What is this "Crackle," you say? Well, not only is it similar to Krackle, Hershey's lame Nestlé Crunch knockoff, it's also Sony's foray into the online world of television à la Hulu and Vevo. This could be the first of its shows you may want to check out, because it stars (and is produced by) Breaking Bad's Bryan Cranston. (It's also from the people who brought us Robot Chicken, if that's any further inducement). The premise? Stop-motion claymation about washed-up superheroes. It's been done before, but this foray includes a character named Jewbot, so I'm all in.

The Man in the High Castle (Amazon)
Nov. 20
This take on a brilliant Philip K. Dick story is the single most anticipated show for me. 'Nuff said.

Fall Arts 2015

Fall Arts 2015: Art

Fall Arts 2015: Comedy

Fall Arts 2015: Film

Fall Arts 2015: Film Festivals

Fall Arts 2015: Lea DeLaria

Fall Arts 2015: Dance

Fall Arts 2015: Theater

Fall Arts 2015: Sex

Fall Arts 2015: Weird


About The Author

Katy St. Clair


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