#SetTheVCR: July 12-18, 2020

Sammy Younan

Girth Radio Presents…

We still have TV! COVID may have shut down productions worldwide but be thankful my couch companions we still have good tv to watch. Well I mean good is a strong word: so…we still have tv to watch! You’ll be dozing like a cat in a warm Sunbeam in no time.

Sunday, July 12

Sammy Suggestion: Zodiac (Anytime / Netflix)
Decades before Michelle McNamara went all I’ll Be Gone in the Dark Jake Gyllenhaal as Robert Graysmith was an intrepid true crime reporter tracking down the Zodiac killer. In real life, Graysmith’s bestseller is Zodiac: The Shocking True Story of the Hunt for the Nation’s Most Elusive Serial Killer. Though over the past few years large swaths of the book and Fincher’s fantastic film have been discredited or corrected. Still, it’s all rather timely and a boon for true crime nerds: Fincher’s deeply creepy Zodiac movie is on Netflix. (PSA: Fincher’s Mank is set to premiere on Netflix in October.)

Monday, July 13

Sammy Suggestion: X-Files: Season 1-11 (Anytime / Amazon Prime)
When was the last time you hung out with The Flukeman? Or Tooms? Or the Cigarette Smoking Man? Amazon Prime has added all 11 seasons of X-Files and this show is one of the best for giving viewers options. If you want to cherry pick and watch the self-contained Monster of the Week episodes you’ll have a good time. Or if you want to follow the show’s Chris Claremont convoluted mythology by investigating only the conspiracy episodes you’ll never trust the government again. You can also consume the B.C. episodes (Season 1-5) which offer an unsettling darkness the LA episodes cannot match. Or perhaps break it down by FBI agents: the Mulder-Scully run vs Doggett or Reyes runs. Or start from the beginning: Season 1 episode 1. (Bonus Fun: you can kick it old school by watching Robert Stack Unsolved Mysteries in tandem as it’s also on Prime; originally they both aired around the same time. How I grew up without night terrors I’ll never know.) X-Files always offers value if and when you go back.

Tuesday, July 14

The Business of Drugs (Anytime / Netflix)

Sammy Suggestion: Showbiz Kids (9 p.m./ HBO)
Showbiz Kids is the latest documentary from director Alex Winter aka Bill S. Preston in Bill and Ted. (Check out his previous docs: Downloaded and The Panama Papers. Still gotta check out his 2018 documentary Trust Machine: The Story Of Blockchain. Pop culture is endless homework.) As you can infer from the title Showbiz Kids explores the dark side of being on the cover of Tiger Beat. Evan Rachel Wood, Milla Jovovich, Wil Wheaton, Jada Pinkett Smith among others appear to discuss the career transitions from being a child actor to navigating Hollywood’s harshness. Think Shirley Temple but set in the social media era.

Wednesday, July 15

Sammy Suggestion: Brave New World (Anytime / Peacock)
A new day; a new streaming service. Peacock launches with the standard mix (the shows you know and love: 30 Rock, SNL etc.) and original programming. Such as Intelligence: a comedy series starring David Schwimmer; The Capture: a British crime-drama series sorta like Prison Break and the winner winner chicken dinner: Brave New World. Based on the book by Aldous Huxley?an author known for psychedelic experiments and attempting to open The Doors of Perception?Brave New World is a modern adaptation of a utopian society where money and monogamy are prohibited. Of course, while New London seems idyllic this a sci-fi series and so cracks begin to appear: turns out not everybody is smiling with their eyes. As Leonard Choen says: “There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” If this show is executed well viewers will quickly realize why Brave New World is often read in tandem with Orwell’s 1984. And here we go!

Thursday, July 16

Sammy Suggestion: True Lies (Anytime / Crave)
True Lies is on Crave! Aw yeah. Kids, it’s hard to believe but there was a golden time when James Cameron was one of us. This is way before those cheezy Avatar movies. He represented goodness and was a reliable source of ruckus and a wicked fun conduit of mayhem. He didn’t care about the environment; he’d destroyed it. Look at what he and Arnold did to bathroom…that environment is all gone!

Friday, July 17

Into the Dark Episode 10: The Current Occupant (Anytime / Hulu)

Sammy Suggestion: Cursed (Anytime / Netflix)
Did you watch Warrior Nun in early July? A comic book series adapted for Netflix it’s all “an ancient order” “teenage girl” “forces of darkness.” Rite on! Well, Netflix has followed up that with Cursed a new fantasy drama inspired by Arthurian legend and based on the Frank Miller comic book.

Saturday, July 18

Sammy Suggestion: #Blessed (8pm / CBC Documentary Channel)
#Blessed is a feature documentary directed by Ali Weinstein that takes you inside C3, an evangelical church that opened in Toronto in 2013.” It premiered a couple of months ago at Hot Docs (online film festival.). As always with mega churches there is a wariness like stepping into an Indiana Jones temple..one wrong step and…so is this an authentic community or a duplicitous corporation? Both?

Sammy Baltic WebSammy Younan @ W • T • F

Also published on Medium.

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