Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Friday, October 10, and Saturday, October 11. All times are Eastern.
Cristela (ABC, 8:30 p.m., Friday): Cristela Alonzo is hoping to become the latest in a long line of comedians to make the jump from popular stand-up to sitcom star. And while the multi-camera form has lost a little of its luster over the past few years, Alonzo just might be the one to revitalize the genre. In his pre-air review, Erik Adams found the show optimistic but never cloying thanks in no small part to Alonzo’s performance. As a sixth-year law student crashing with her sister and brother-in-law while competing for an internship at a high-profile law firm, Alonzo brings both comedic chops and charm to the titular roll. The premiere is worth watching if only to see a particular Alonzo reaction Erik could only describe as “part Lucy Ricardo after a big swig of Vitameatavegamin, part Bill Cosby at the end of The Cosby Show credits.”
Chelsea Handler: Uganda Be Kidding Me (Netflix, 12 a.m., Friday): Chelsea Handler kicks off her Netflix partnership with a brand new stand-up special called Uganda Be Kidding Me. The comedian last made headlines when she tweeted a poorly timed plug for her book of the same title during Lupita Nyong’o’s Oscar speech. Now she’ll have even more opportunities to court controversy as her Netflix deal also includes a docu-series and a talk show.
Please Like Me (Pivot, 10:30 p.m., Friday): In his TV Review, Brandon Nowalk praises Please Like Me’s “vibrant, credible world centered on gayness” as well as the way the show has grown over its sophomore season. So go ahead and binge-watch the whole thing ahead of Friday’s finale.
Genesis—Sum of the Parts (Showtime, 8 p.m., Friday): This BBC special about progressive rock band Genesis gets a U.S. premiere courtesy of Showtime. Former members Tony Banks, Phil Collins, Peter Gabriel, Steve Hackett, and Mike Rutherford reunite for the first time since 1975 to talk about the group’s success and their solo careers. But first: Relive Genesis’ awkward ’80s glory and comically large coats.
The Knick (Cinemax, 10 p.m., Friday)
Doctor Who (BBC America, 9 p.m., Saturday)
Saturday Night Live (NBC, 11:30 p.m., Saturday)
Transparent (2 p.m., Friday): Eric Thurm continues to work his way through this Amazon series—and discuss gender as a construct—as he takes a look at episodes five and six.
In her pre-air review, Genevieve Valentine finds a whole lot to love in Showtime’s new original drama, The Affair.
The two narratives present in the premiere episode beautifully take note of every detail—so much that to describe the plot would be to spoil things. (Treem’s writing rewards careful scrutiny, since the distance between accounts does as much for characterization as anything explicitly shown.) But from the different ways the same family orders lunch to the shots of the ocean as equally a picturesque escape and the engulfing void, The Affair offers the parallel unfurling of two stories about one thing that are often so different as to be unrecognizable. The painstaking attention to detail makes powerful character beats out of even the most passing, unspoken discrepancies. This is a series that constantly reminds you stories can’t be trusted.
Elsewhere, the AVC staff share the shows we loved as kids in a brand new AVQ&A. (All together now: awww!)
Say Yes To The Dress (TLC, 9 p.m., Friday): Thank god Say Yes To The Dress is back for a 12th season so we can stop settling for reruns of its far inferior spin-off, Say Yes To The Dress: Atlanta.
Human Resources (Pivot, 9 p.m., Friday): In addition to Please Like Me, this other Pivot original series also reaches a season finale on Friday. Enjoy one last round of reality TV antics from a group of young environmental entrepreneurs.
My Cat From Hell (Animal Planet, 8 p.m., Saturday): We like to imagine this Animal Planet series—which returns for a fifth season—is a horror sequel to The Cat In The Hat.
Warden’s Ransom (Lifetime, 8 p.m., Saturday): Reversing the usual gendered undertones of exploitative prison films, a female warden tries to maintain control over a wealthy inmate at men’s maximum-security prison. Meanwhile, he offers a multi-million dollar reward to anyone who can help him escape.
Intruders (BBC America, 10 p.m., Saturday): Expect mysteries, mysteries, and more mysteries on the Intruders first season finale.
51 Amazing American Facts (H2, 9 p.m., Saturday): Considering this is a H2 production, at least 49 of these facts will involve aliens.
The Hunger Games (ABC Family, 8p.m., Friday): The third film in the four-part Hunger Games franchise hits theaters in a little over a month. Brush up on Panem history by revisiting the first entry in the franchise.
Something Of Value (TCM, 10:15 p.m., Friday): This 1957 Richard Brooks film dramatizes the Mau Mau uprising in which British colonialists massacred as many as 20,000 Mau Mau militants in Kenya. Rock Hudson and Sidney Poitier star as former childhood friends on opposite sides of the conflict.
War Of The Worlds (TNT, 8 p.m., Saturday): The perfect film for those who prefer their alien invasions quiet and contemplative rather than big and flashy.
MLB Playoff: Game 1: Royals at Orioles (TBS, 8 p.m., Friday): The American League Championship Series kicks off with the Kansas City Royals battling the Baltimore Orioles. TBS: Very Baseball.
College Football: Mississippi at Texas A&M (ESPN, 9 p.m., Saturday): The Ole Miss Rebels face off against the Texas A&M Aggies. Looks like these Rebels have a cause after all….
A To Z: “B Is For Big Glory” and also for Brandon Nowalk who reviewed the second episode of this new NBC romantic sitcom.