Drogon, Emilia Clarke (HBO)

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Sunday, April 24. All times are Eastern.

Top picks

Game Of Thrones (HBO, 9 p.m.): We have learned to pay attention when Ian McShane curses at us, educated as we were by years of Deadwood. As such, we heeded his memorable response to inadvertently spoiling his upcoming Game Of Thrones role: “Get a fucking life, it’s only tits and dragons.” This was made easier by the fact that there were some big issues with season five, including its botching of the Dorne subplot and the fact that the show’s tone-deaf approach to sexual assault has gone past being embarrassing. Also, like Maisie Williams, we’re really damn sick of people asking about Jon Snow.

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However, while we agree issues do exist, we still appreciate tits and dragons an awful lot, as well as the things Game Of Thrones does well: gorgeous settings and set design, action sequences unlike anything else on TV, deeply complicated interpersonal dynamics, payoffs to long-awaited meetings. Hence, we retain excitement at the season premiere of HBO’s fantasy juggernaut, otherwise known as of Gene Belcher’s thirteenth favorite holiday. With an end closer in sight than previously expected, the stakes are ever higher for Daenerys, Tyrion, Arya, Sansa, Cersei, Jaime, Brienne, Hodor (Hodor!) and all other residents of Westeros, as well as for showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss to steer the series to a successful conclusion.

Once more, Myles McNutt sits upon the Iron Throne, bowed under his responsibility to lead the people and provide Expert reviews. As for Erik Adams, he has gone north to take the black, and his position as Hand Of The King and Newbie reviewer will be filled by Brandon Nowalk.

Silicon Valley (HBO, 10 p.m.): At the end of season two, the Pied Piper team were handed both victory and defeat, surviving the Hooli intellectual property lawsuit only to see their not-at-all-fearless leader Richard Hendrix stripped of his title as CEO by their investors. Now a new season puts Richard, Erlich, Jared, Dinesh, and Gilfoyle in a tricky position, trying to balance their outsider sense of identity with the increased scrutiny and expectations that come with success, as well as the management style of a new CEO. Erik Adams, serving as a special consultant, reports that despite the new scale it’s still business as usual.

The wonky workplace concern of these early episodes revolves around “scaling” the Pied Piper platform for a larger customer base, but that’s nothing showrunners Mike Judge and Alec Berg need to fret over. By putting Pied Piper in a situation where it must behave like an actual business—like the Yankees to its Bad News Bears, digital behemoth Hooli—season three of Silicon Valley organically adds to all that’s at risk. And that serves to intensify the anxieties and pettiness that fuel the show’s humor.

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While he admits to some bitterness that he wasn’t picked to be Pied Piper’s new CEO himself, Les Chappell has survived the scrutiny of the shareholders and is back to provide regular season three coverage.

Veep (HBO, 10:30 p.m.): In an equally unsteady position is President Selina Meyer, whose election was left in deadlocked status at the end of last year. Season five begins in doubt as to whether or not Meyer’s presidency will continue to exist, as well as the real-world doubts as to where the newly anointed Emmy winner for Best Comedy will go now that creator Armando Ianucchi has left the show. In an early address to the nation, Joshua Alston says that the latter doubts have no place here:

Iannucci’s singular, outsider voice and the crystalline vision for his funhouse-mirror reflection of American politics, he seems like an especially tough act to follow. But the fifth season of Veep doesn’t just win the expectations game, it just wins. The rapid-fire, acid-tongued dialogue hasn’t changed, nor has the almost unfathomable ratio of zingers per minute. With a cast this talented—Julia Louis-Dreyfus remains at the height of her talents—the only thing that could go wrong is the writing, but it’s as assured and hilarious as ever.

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Readers of The A.V. Club will still have coverage they can believe in thanks to Kate Kulzick, who’s in the front row of the White House Briefing Room ready to pick up on every profane rant and profound embarrassment of Selina and the Meyer administration.

Premieres and finales

Rebellion (Sundance, 8 p.m.): Season two of Outlander sucked up the majority of the oxygen for United Kingdom tales of independence, but now Ireland’s looking to take it back. This five-part miniseries takes a look at the 1916 Easter Rising through the eyes of various characters played by Niamh Cusack, Brian Gleeson, Charlie Murphy, and Sarah Greene. Vikram Murthi, in his pre-air review, found it a mixed Irish stew of some ingredients that work and some that don’t:

The main problem lies with the series’ overly broad scope, which stretches just about every moment too thin. [Series writer Colin] Teevan tries to honestly capture the multiple perspectives in the conflict—the socialist rebels, the upper crust, the Irishmen fighting in the British army, the civil servants, the family members on the sidelines—but he doesn’t have the finesse needed to provide all of them with the requisite impact. Editor Ben Mercer does a helluva job coherently cutting between the storylines, some of which are so far on the fringes of the central conflict that it’s a wonder why they’re included at all, and yet they all too frequently become muddled together.

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Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown (CNN, 9 p.m.): Anthony Bourdain’s quest for the finest and most exotic dishes enters its seventh season, and he travels to Manila in the Philippines. Bourdain has previously acknowledged that the Philippines’ island of Cebu has the best roast suckling pig on the planet, so it’s entirely likely that at least one animal will be on the spit tonight. Truthfully though, we just want to know when he’s planning to record the next episodes of Bastard Chef.

I Am Cait (E!, 9 p.m.): It’s the season finale of the future Transparent actress’s reality show, and all the descriptions say is “An unforgettable season leads to an unmissable ending.” So if we forgot that this season was even airing, by transitive properties does that we mean we’re allowed to miss the ending?

Doctor Foster: A Woman Scorned (Lifetime, 9 p.m.): It’s the finale of Doctor Foster, and she’s prepared one final act of revenge against the man who did her wrong. Sigh. Y’know, it’s been a while since it was on the air and even longer since it was fun to watch, but we do miss letting out a loud “REVENGE!!!” on Sunday nights.

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United Shades Of America (CNN, 10 p.m.): W. Kamau Bell returns to television with a new documentary series exploring America’s subcultures (in his words doing for racism what Bourdain’s done for food) and the former Totally Biased host has lost none of his passion for pushing boundaries. Case in point: the premiere sees him sitting down for a chat with a hood-wearing member of the Ku Klux Klan.

Regular coverage

Once Upon A Time (ABC, 8 p.m.)

The Good Wife (CBS, 8 p.m.)

The Simpsons (Fox, 8 p.m.)

The Girlfriend Experience (Starz, 8 p.m.)

Bob’s Burgers (Fox, 8:30 p.m.)

The Family (ABC, 9 p.m.)

Fear The Walking Dead (AMC, 9 p.m.)

The Carmichael Show (NBC, 9 p.m.)

The Last Man On Earth (Fox, 9:30 p.m.)

Elementary (CBS, 10 p.m.)

Streaming pick

Avatar: The Last Airbender, “The Firebending Masters” (Amazon Prime): Since we assume that no one on the internet needs our help locating tits, we decided to go to one of our favorite examples of Game Of Thrones’s other selling point, as Aang and Zuko try to unearth the roots of firebending. Long before George R.R. Martin used the term on the fifth volume, Team Avatar learned how to dance with dragons.

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