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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Showtime finales continue TV’s death march towards holiday reruns

Illustration for article titled Showtime finales continue TV’s death march towards holiday reruns

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Sunday, December 21st. All times are Eastern.


Top Pick

Homeland/The Affair (Showtime, 9/10 p.m.): We seem to remember a time when the season finale of Homeland would have lit our Twitter feeds ablaze, but now we just find ourselves nodding at the computer going, “four seasons, huh?” Still, various A.V. Club critics have generally liked this fourth season, and so we leave it to Joshua Alston to parse through whatever explosive curveballs (literally or otherwise) the Homeland team sees fit to throw at us in tonight’s conclusion. Meanwhile, Carrie Raisler has been following the adulterous adventures of Ruth Wilson and Dominic West’s Affair, which closes out its first season tonight. Since she found last week’s penultimate episode to be “overstuffed, over-soaped, and overdone” while still maintaining moments of “brilliance and insight,” we’re curious to see on which side of the fence tonight’s finale will land.


Also noted

Marco Polo (Netflix): Kyle Fowle’s daily reviews of Netflix’s expensive experiment come to an end today, with the series’ tenth and possibly final episode. Polo and friends leave us with an episode entitled, “The Heavenly And The Primal,” and judging by the gratuitous nudity and…well, just about everything, we’re going to go ahead and assume that the finale leans more heavily on the “primal” than the “heavenly.”

Mulaney (Fox, 7 p.m.): Talented comedian John Mulaney has hit more than a few roadblocks in his quest to create a modern Seinfeld, not least of which is his show’s ever-changing timeslot. So if you’re still invested in Mulaney’s multi-cam alter-ego, note this time change in your DVR’s, day planners, or lunar calendars (we don’t judge). If not, peruse @SeinfeldToday and don’t be surprised when you emerge an hour later.

The Comeback (HBO, 10 p.m.): Valerie Cherish finally makes it to HBO! We don’t mean in The Comeback, which has already been back for weeks, but in the premiere of her show-within-a-show, Seeing Red. Tonight, she faces both the critics and her husband. We’re not sure which should cause her more concern, so we’ll let our Cherish correspondent Oliver Sava parse it out.


Tomorrow in T.V. Club

The year-end coverage will continue apace! Several A.V. Club critics will look back at what we said we were most anticipating from 2014 to see how well they hold up. Also, Erik Adams will weigh in on Amazon’s new series Mozart In The Jungle, Marah Eakin will highlight Stephen Colbert’s duet with Willie Nelson, and various writers will combine their nerdy powers to bring you an Inventory on—this is true—killer Santas. Merry holidays!


What else is on?

Tales From The Royal Bedchamber (PBS, 8 p.m.): Much to our devastation, this is not a salacious look into the unspeakably weird sex lives of royals, but a study of the actual bedroom—how it functioned, what kinds of beds lay within, who was granted access to said room, etcetera and so on. But there’s got to be at least a minute devoted to some William and Mary of Orange kink, right? (Don’t look at us like that. Look at them! And now you can’t stop imagining 50 Shades Of Orange, you are so welcome.)


Khloe And Kourtney Take The Hamptons: There’s No Smoke Without Fire Island (E!, 9 p.m.): What’s On Tonight doesn’t have formal opinions on Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian, but our college friend sure does (“Scott’s parents just got really old and they died, and he felt bad, and Scott had always asked Kourtney to go to the Hamptons and she wouldn’t, and then she told him she was pregnant and he was like, ‘but we never have sex’ so then I heard they were going to the Hamptons to fix their relationship…he was dealing with the heaviness of fatherhood.’”)! We don’t know what any of this means, but ugh, can we live?

The Librarians (TNT, 8 p.m.): We don’t know how we missed the boat on this TNT show, but we’ve had a thing for crime-solving librarians since Rachel Weisz in The Mummy, so we wholeheartedly support this show despite not having seen a minute. We will take your opinions in the comments, as always.


The House Bunny (Comedy Central, 7:55 p.m.): There was a time when we tried to see Burn After Reading, but when we were turned away from a sold out theater we made do with The House Bunny instead—and we were thrilled. Sure, the premise sounds like a nightmare—a rejected Playboy bunny takes over a failing sorority house—but hilarious performances from Anna Faris and Emma Stone save it. Also, the dude from All-American Rejects. Remember All-American Rejects? They were pretty okay. But more to the point, The House Bunny is great, and one of the rare non-holiday options available for weeks to come, so there is that.

Sunday Night Football: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals (NBC, 8:20 p.m.): The stakes are high for this game, say several articles on the subject. So if none of the above catches your fancy, settle in to watch giant dudes pummel each other into the ground. It’s the American way.


In case you missed it

The Late Late Show / The Legend of Korra: Two series finales of great importance aired this weekend. One featured Bob Newhart, Drew Carey, and a talking skeleton, while the other featured battles and queer twists. But which was which? Click through to read Caroline Siede and Oliver Sava’s takes and find out. The answer may surprise you (no, it won’t).


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