Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

It’s the launch of Disney+, so here comes The Mandalorian

Photo: François Duhamel (Disney+)

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Tuesday, November 12. All times are Eastern.


Top picks

The second new streaming service of the month arrives today, and it’s a big one. While the big selling point of Apple TV+ was several high-profile, glossy original series, Disney’s is its gargantuan library. That doesn’t mean it’s not also trotting out a few big shows—one giant one in particular. In addition to the three shows and two films mentioned below and that enormous catalog of movies, a Disney+ membership will also get you access to the premieres of the Kristen Bell-hosted drama club reunion series Encore!, Disney docuseries The Imagineering Story, the feel-good reality show Marvel’s Hero Project, and the existential (and legitimately wonderful) Toy Story spin-off Forky Asks A Question, which clocks in at a whopping three minutes per episode. It’s really great.

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Some quick info on the service, if this is all news to you: Disney+ is launching at $6.99/month or $69.99/year, with a seven-day free trial. There’s not a ton of info available yet on exact ways to watch; a pre-launch help center mentions that it will be “accessible on a wide variety of devices, including PC, mobile phones and tablets, and a wide range of connected TV devices.” You can also sign up for the service as part of a bundle with ESPN+ and Hulu, and that combo will set you back $12.99 a month.


The Mandalorian (Disney+, 3:01 a.m.): The first live-action series from the Star Wars universe, this show from Jon Favreau looks like a million bucks (or, more accurately, like $12.5 million bucks per episode). There were no advanced screeners provided to critics, so we only know what you know: It’s set between the fall of the Empire and the rise of the First Order (so, between Return Of The Jedi and The Force Awakens); Pedro Pascal plays a lone cowboy type, and leads a cast that includes Gina Carano, Carl Weathers, Giancarlo Esposito, Emily Swallow, Omid Abtahi, Nick Nolte, and Werner freakin’ Herzog. Katie Rife will recap; the second episode arrives Friday.

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (Disney+, 3:01 a.m.): “Tim Federle’s High School Musical: The Musical: The Series is a metafictional reimagining that recognizes the incontestable effect of its source material while pivoting in a way that improves upon it for today’s audience. While the more prominent arc isn’t exactly revolutionary, this newest installment shows early signs of its ability to root itself in something a little deeper. And though the clunky title can feel like an act of aggression, damn, these kids are talented.” Read the rest of Shannon Miller’s review.

The World According To Jeff Goldblum (Disney+, 3:01 a.m.): “Watching The World According To Jeff Goldblum is a lot like watching Shia LaBeouf livestream his reactions to marathoning his own oeuvre, from Man Down to The Even Stevens Movie. Whatever else is happening on screen is besides the point—the real focus is the response, however outsize or charming it may be. There are certainly some interesting factoids and behind-the-scenes looks sprinkled throughout this new docuseries from Jeff Goldblum and fellow executive producer Jane Root, including a trip to the laboratory of “Shoe Surgeon” Dominic Ciambrone. But as the title (and series announcement) suggests, this show is less about putting the world on a platter for viewers, and more about filtering it through Goldblum’s Goldblum-ness, i.e., unadulterated zeal for just about everything.” Read the rest of Danette Chavez’s review.

Lady And The Tramp (Disney+, 3:01 a.m.): “The first live-action Disney remake to debut exclusively on the new Disney+ streaming platform, Lady And The Tramp often has the feel of an expensive made-for-TV movie. Taken on its own, it’s a perfectly fine if somewhat generic kid’s film that aims to satisfy young viewers but won’t grate the nerves of any adults who might also be in the room. The problem is that it’s remaking one of the most gorgeous, mature films in the Disney animated canon, and doesn’t begin to rise to that high water mark.” Read the rest of Caroline Siede’s film review.

Noelle (Disney+, 3:01 a.m.): Look for Gwen Ihnat’s review of this Christmas movie, starring Anna Kendrick and Bill Hader, later today.

Regular coverage

This Is Us (NBC, 9 p.m.)

Wild card

Dolly Parton: Here She Comes Again! (ABC, 10 p.m.): This one-hour special, hosted by Robin Roberts, will include “never-before-seen archival interviews and performance footage,” but the main event is Dolly herself, who Roberts interviewed at the Dollywood theme park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. There’s no trailer for this one that we could find, so hey, let’s just take a minute to watch the video for the song from which the special takes its title.

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About the author

Allison Shoemaker

Contributor, The A.V. Club and The Takeout. Allison loves television, bourbon, and dramatically overanalyzing social interactions.