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Open up, America! With Bob And David is here to save sketch comedy—again

David Cross, Bob Odenkirk (Netflix)

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Friday, November 13 and Saturday, November 14. All times are Eastern.

Top pick

With Bob And David (Netflix, 3:01 a.m., Friday): We can argue all day (and many of us have) whether Mr. Show is the best sketch comedy series of all time. (Python probably has that top spot in perpetuity, but an argument can me made—which is what the comments are for!) But fans of the fine art of the sketch are united in gratitude that Netflix has given Bob Odenkirk and David Cross carte blanche to revive Mr. Show in all but (first half of the) name. They’ve even reunited most of their stellar supporting cast, all of whom have gone on to be hilarious performers in their own right. Paul F. Tompkins, Scott Aukerman, Jay Johnston, John Ennis, Dino Stamatopoulos, Brian Posehn—all back. Sure, Bob and David have said that this new show won’t be as concerned with the often-complicated (and maddeningly time-consuming) linking structure of Mr. Show, but who gives a hoot, especially when Erik Adams, in his pre-air review, says, “comparisons between the two are inevitable—not that With Bob And David suffers from them in any way.” Vikram Murthi’s on reviewing duties, bringing out a new review every other day, starting on Friday. Whatever Vikram says, there’s one thing we call all agree on—they got the goods:

Also noted

John Mulaney: The Comeback Kid (Netflix, 3:01 a.m., Friday): Marah Eakin spoke to standup comic, sitcom star, excessive tuna enthusiast, and former SNL writer (and Stefon co-creator) Mulaney about the tough year that led up to the creation of this standup special. Our own Erik Adams reports on how successfully he turned pain and failure into big laughs. Like you do.


Reign (CW, 8 p.m., Friday): Nostradamus butts his clairvoyant, beardy head into the various queens’ businesses, and Genevieve Valentine can only hope that his flim-flammery can steer the show out of the rut that was last week’s episode. Or at least lead everyone to some bold new wardrobe and lifestyle choices:

Grimm (NBC, 9 p.m., Friday): Rosalee is kidnapped by a bunch of orphans who are looking for a mother to take care of them. Which sounds sort of understandable, except that this is Grimm, and Les Chappell is worried they’re almost certainly monster children who are going to try to eat her face off. And now time for the Grimm monster(less) picture of the week!

No monster pics available, so let’s assume she’s seeing something horrible by lamplight (NBC)

Please Like Me (Pivot, 10 p.m., Friday): Josh and Geoffrey go to the football match, which does not go well. Still, after an outstanding party episode last time, Brandon Nowalk is confident that even a football fiasco will be as entertaining as the rest of this third season.


The Knick (Cinemax, 10 p.m., Friday): A subway explosion sends a flood of patients to the Knick, where medical science is still on the “we’ve almost got it figured out” side of modern competence. Brandon Nowalk stands at the ready to observe, evaluate, and, if necessary, cut-and-paste.

Doctor Who (BBC America, 9 p.m., Saturday): After being knocked for a loop and put through the wringer (the dreaded loop-wringer) by last week’s philosophically wrenching episode, Alasdair Wilkins is shaking up some Jiffy Pop and settling in for a nice, straightforwardly terrifying ol’ Doctor Who, as the Doctor and Clara stumble across something disturbing in the footage of an abandoned space station.


Ash Vs. Evil Dead (Starz, 9 p.m., Saturday): After a rip-roaring, demon-splattering return, Bruce Campbell’s Ash continues to fight the forces of evil that he, sure, accidentally set free while trying to get laid. This week, Ash does some research, while reviewer Michael Roffman asks if a trip to the bookstore is really the best move for a demon-hunter with a chainsaw arm. He’s gonna get shushed.

Guardians Of The Galaxy (Disney XD, 9:30 p.m., Saturday): After a hot streak of solid episodes, Kevin Johnson was practically thrown through the Milano’s windshield (or whatever spaceships have) by the misbegotten bummer of last week’s misfire. He’s hoping for a Guardians-style underdog rally this week, when Rocket has to go to extreme lengths to save Groot after his leafy pal is infected by a vicious case of space Dutch Groot disease.


The Returned (Sundance, 10 p.m., Saturday): The dead are risen—and they are French and very spooky. Erik Adams is back on the beat this week, but Alex McCown says of the second season of this eerie, often mesmerizing series, “Answers on this show have always been difficult to come by, because they aren’t ultimately the point. Grief, sadness, the burdens of the past… these are the trials that drive The Returned…” [Shudders.] Kind of makes you wish for a good, old-fashioned shambling zombie you can just whack in the head and forget about.

The Last Kingdom (BBC America, 10 p.m., Saturday): After seeing his attempt to exist in both worlds seem to fall apart last episode, Uhtre leads a raiding party, and meets a beautiful sorceress queen. Kyle Fowle continues to extol this historical drama’s virtues, telling Vikings fans that this is the perfect complement to that show, and telling The Bastard Executioner fans that this is the show they should really be watching instead.


Saturday Night Live (NBC, 11:30 p.m., Saturday): Elizabeth Banks walks into the shattered ruins left behind by last week’s debacle and wanders the halls, beckoning, “Guys? It’s okay—that man’s gone now. Just me, Lizzie. I’m nice, and have comedy training. Guys? Lorne? Musical guest Disclosure is here, too. I know Alec Baldwin. Honest—we will not hurt you.” Dennis Perkins, too, will be crawling out from under his desk to review.

“So, Kenan—how was last w—” “I do NOT want to talk about it.”

Elsewhere in TV Club

In this week’s AVQ&A, your favorite AV Clubbers make their picks for what movies they’d want to be remade, and by what directors. And no, no one picked “the Star Wars prequels, by anyone other than George Lucas.” We’ll leave that to everyone on Twitter. Then, Kenneth Arthur interviews Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’s delightful Rachel Bloom about her improbably successful journey from YouTube sensation to primetime TV star. Then, since we’re all excited about sketch comedy, check out Alex McCown’s Watch This feature on the influential sketch series In Living Color. No spoilers, but, on rewatch, it is suspected that Homey continues not to play that.


What else is on

Undateable (NBC, 8 p.m., Friday): If you haven’t been watching this all-live season of Undateable, last week you missed Ron Funches in a Pooh-bear costume.

You have only yourself to blame (NBC)

MasterChef Junior (Fox, 8 p.m., Friday): The tiny chefs have a cupcake-frosting contest. Then a scallops challenge. You know just one of those kids was a kid for a second and thought, “I want nothing more than to put frosting on these scallops and I don’t care what you say, Ramsay. I am alive!”


The Amazing Race (CBS, 8 p.m., Friday): Everyone has to go busking in Krakow, Poland in this installment of Ugly Americans: The Reality Show.

Last Man Standing (ABC, 8 p.m., Friday): Tim Allen’s manly Mike would prefer that his wife’s friend (not a man) not stay with them, since she might have to stay in his man cave—of manliness.


Regular Show (Cartoon Network, 8:30 p.m., Friday): A week of new episodes closes with Rigby trying to learn Chinese, while returning Benson’s stolen pig. Busy week for Rigby all around, really.

Dr. Ken (ABC, 8:30 p.m., Friday): When Ken’s successful TV doc sister (guest star Margaret Cho) comes to visit, the jealous Ken goes on her show. Knowing Ken’s even-keeled personality, things should go juuuust fine.


Truth Be Told (NBC, 8:30 p.m., Friday): The “tell it like it is” protagonists (or “chatty assholes,” as some might say) pose as a gay couple to try to wheedle a great deal on a new car from a gay salesman. Or, just watch Mr. Show instead:

Hawaii Five-O (CBS, 9 p.m., Friday): The gang helps a charming con man find charming vengeance after his partner is less-charmingly killed by a criminal almost totally lacking in charm.


No No: A Dockumentary (ESPNCLS, 9 p.m., Friday): Documentary (that extra ‘k’ is sort of a goof) about the late Dock Ellis, the former baseball pitcher most famous for throwing a no-hitter while tripping his ass off on acid. He later went on to be an addiction counselor, a noble profession do doubt made more difficult by the fact that every client probably just wanted him to tell about the no-hitter thing.

Live From Lincoln Center—Act One (PBS, 9 p.m., Friday): Biographical play follows the struggles of famed playwright Moss Hart (of the Kaufman and Hart team— The Man Who Came To Dinner, You Can’t Take It With You) to overcome his impoverished childhood and make it all the way to Broadway.


Shark Tank (ABC, 9 p.m., Friday): It’s “millennial entrepreneurs” night, so get ready for lots of condescending head-shakes from the disdainful millionaire hosts!

America’s Next Top Model (CW, 9 p.m., Friday): We’re down to the final four, people—this is not a drill. This week, supermodel Chrissy Teigen stops by to offer the contestants her boundless insight into being very, very pretty.


Z Nation (Syfy, 10 p.m., Friday): “The heroes are forced to split up when threatened by a massive horde of zombies.” Wait, no alien zombies? No plant zombies? No zombie marijuana? You disappoint us, Z Nation.

The Wives Did It (ID, 10 p.m., Friday): Well, no reason to watch this now.

Blue Bloods (CBS, 10 p.m., Friday): Danny’s chasing a serial killer, Jamie’s dealing with a hostage situation, but no one—no one—is cleaning out that break room fridge back at the station. Lo mein’s been in there for months, guys.


Satisfaction (USA, 10 p.m., Friday): Everyone’s sleeping with everyone else in this swingers/escorts drama that is supposed to be pretty good, actually.

Black Jesus (Adult Swim, 11 p.m., Friday): When Trayvon steals cable, Black Jesus says, “Not on my watch, miste—wait, is that Fresh Off The Boat? Move over.”


Pete Correale: Let Me Tell Ya (Showtime, 11 p.m., Friday): The Showtime press release pretty much says it all: “Comedian Pete Correale delivers a stand-up routine.”

Da Vinci’s Demons (Starz, 8 p.m., Saturday): When the Labyrinth tries to program Leonardo’s mind, it essentially sends him into a 15th-century version of the Matrix, where, presumably, he can react in “arbalest time.”


The Preacher’s Sin (Lifetime, 8 p.m., Saturday): When a married preacher in a Lifetime movie has a TV show called “Family In The Forefront,” you just know there’s an illegitimate kid out there somewhere.

I’m Not Ready For Christmas (Hallmark, 8 p.m., Saturday): The title of this Hallmark movie inadvertently echoes everyone’s feelings about made-for-TV Christmas movies in the middle of November.


College Football: Oklahoma At Baylor (ABC, 8 p.m., Saturday): Seems to be the only nationally televised game between two ranked teams—that’s a ticket to What’s on Tonight glory!

U2: iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE Live in Paris (HBO, 9 p.m., Saturday): U2 plays songs from their new album—and older songs that people like.


Listen To Me Marlon (Showtime, 9 p.m., Saturday): A patchwork portrait of Marlon Brando’s life, pieced together with snatches of home movies and audio recordings of the legendary actor-turned-recluse.

Democratic Presidential Debate (CBS, 9 p.m., Saturday): There is still a full, no-kidding year of this election season. Luckily, Mr. Show is there:

Survivorman (Discovery Science, 10 p.m., Saturday): In the first part of this two-parter, Les Stroud treks into the Translyvanian Alps. In part two, Les Stroud is suddenly only interested in night-based survival challenges.


Spotless (Esquire, 10 p.m., Saturday): Esquire Network gets into the original drama business with this crime series about a pair of British brothers whose crime-scene cleaning business runs afoul of criminals who, it appears, like their crime scenes all filthy.

Anarchy Parlor (TMC, 10:30 p.m., Saturday): Six young tourists run afoul of a creepy guy when they stumble upon his unusual business. And, hey kids, it’s an anarchy parlor—use coasters. He’s an anarchist, not an animal.


In case you missed it

Master Of None: Aziz Ansari’s victory lap continues, as Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya says, of this seventh episode (which deals with the everyday, bullshit sexism women have to face), “Instead of it just being an episode about the horrors women face in their everyday lives as told by men, these women craft the story, lending to Master Of None’s overall authenticity.” By any standard, Ansari’s show is exceeding expectations.


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