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'That Psychopath Called Bon Jovi Pedestrian?' The 10 Best TV Episodes of the Week

By Dustin Rowles | Seriously Random Lists | October 21, 2013 | Comments ()


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1. The Walking Dead — Maybe the best episode of the entire series’ run, this week’s The Walking Dead introduced a new kind of fear, and now that the series’ most annoying characters have been killed off, the fear is even more heightened because it has the potential to take one or more of the characters with whom we’ve become truly emotionally invested. Just don’t let it be Lil Ass Kicker. I don’t think I could stomach it. (See TK’s review).


2. The Good Wife: Me, the last 15 seconds:

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(See Joanna’s recap on Vulture)

3. Homeland — After what appeared for 45 minutes to be another annoying, irksome, boring continuation of a slumping season three, the last few minutes of “Game On” changed everything with a twist that I never saw coming. It doesn’t improve the Dana plotline, but the Carrie plotline was good enough that I can forgive the last two episodes. (See Cindy’s recap)

4. The Mindy Project — This is as perfect an episode of Mindy as we could ever expect: Kevin Smith being his hilariously self-deprecating self (in a cameo the Internet somehow didn’t spoil for me), Dr. C’s brilliant naked art show, and Ginsberg performing Katy Perry on a ukelele, the way it should be performed. (See Joanna’s GIFcap)

5. Sons of Anarchy — A brilliant return to early season form, this week’s episode of Sons of Anarchy did something the show has’t done in a very long while: It had fun. Jax was grinning. Bobby was hugging. Gemma was sassing. The D.A. went full hood, and Venus Van Dam brought the cleavage. It was one hell of a crowd-pleasing episode. (See my Uproxx recap)

6. Masters of Sex — The theme of this week’s episode was “Men are terrible,” and by the end of the episode, I felt that intimately. Bill Masters is a dick. Ethan Haas is a belligerent drunk, Bill Master’s Dad was an abusive a**hole, and and the patient in this episode felt compelled to have her tubes tied to that she couldn’t have any more kids for her husband to beat. I’d like to think that men in general are better people than they were in the ’50s, and for the most part, I think they are, but local news stories often suggest otherwise. (See my recap)

7. Boardwalk Empire — Jeffrey Wright’s Dr. Narcisse is proving himself to be even more evil, cunning, and manipulative than we could’ve imagine, but right now, it’s the Johnny Torio, O’Banion. and Al Capone business in Chicago that I am finding most compelling. I also don’t dislike the Willie plotline as much as most people. Willie may be a little Dana Brody, but he brings out the good in Nucky. I’m also very interested in seeing where this Margaret/Arnold Rothstein subplot is headed. (See Josh’s Uproxx recap)

8. The New Girl — Amanda Dobbins over on Vulture argues that the Nick and Jess relationship isn’t working, but I completely disagree: I think Jess is bringing all of Nick’s neuroses to the surface, and his neuroses are a lot of fun to play around with, and I especially appreciate that Nick and Jess always adorably overcome these personal obstacles in the end. (See Joanna’s GIFcap)

9. American Horror Story — Not quite as good as the bonkers pilot, but Jessica Lange, Kathy Bates, and Angela Bassett (and her minotaur lover) continue to steal this season away from the teenagers, although the Franken-boy is hysterically fun. (See Joanna’s recap)

10. Scandal — I’m glad they took a small break from the President and Olivia’s ongoing relationship problems to focus on a case again (because Darby Stanchfield, Columbus Short, Katie Lowes, and Guillermo Diaz are still play my favorite characters in this series, and they’ve been pushed to the background of late), but the real star so far this season is Olivia’s Dad, Eli, who can yell with perfect anunciation better than any character on television. When Huck says he’s been brainwashed by Eli, I believe that sh*t. (See Sarah’s recap)



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Comments Are Welcome, Jerks Will Be Banned


  • ellie

    When are we going to address the fact that it's just New Girl, with no The?

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    Do I not watch enough television?

  • Foop

    I thought the last episode of S.H.I.E.L.D. was better than most of these, but to be fair that's the first time I've said that about the show.

  • Jifaner

    It was the first episode of SOA that I actually enjoyed this season. It's been a long, violent slog so far.

  • Also, Homeland gets a high spot for 5 minutes but Parks and Rec doesn't even get a mention? You disgust me, Rowles!

  • I love everything about Scandal except Huck. I HATE HUCK. OK, actually I just think the actor is *awful*. I hate the way he says things, all breathy and painful and terribly acted. I hate how over-the-top he is with everything. He just buuuuugs.

  • Pasnip

    Homeland is an endurance test, I'm hanging in there but not even this episode lifted my spirits. I wasn't surprised by the ending, I was surprised it was revealed this early in the season. I feel stuck in the Carry/Dana vortex with wonderful and interesting supporting characters underused. The pacing and plotting seems uneven and unsure. I'll stick with it, but if this season is a letdown I'll not be back for more. And, because I've just watched Walking Dead (SPOILER) did the piggies really deserve it? I think not.

  • Cree83

    I'm not feeling Nick and Jess. New Girl was about 4 goofballs hanging out, and we the audience felt their chemistry and wanted to hang out with the four of them. This season it's about Nick and Jess being a weird couple, Schmidt on his own, Winston on his own. Not nearly as much fun to watch.

  • Parsnip

    I agree that Jess and Nick have taken centre stage and Schmidt and Winston are peripheral. But I'm particularly irritated by the constant Schmidt and Cece roundabout and Winston's lack of any story. What's the point of having Winston if they're not going to give the lad anything to do? Having said that, I'll keep watching, but they may well lose me this season I'm already starting to wobble.

  • Cree83

    Also, Brooklyn Nine Nine should definitely be on the board, maybe even in the #3 or 4 spot.

  • Milly

    Enjoyable episodes of Sleepy Hollow and Elementary, too.

    Yes, they are both procedural, but the dressing and garnish is lovely and they are very good. Think of them like burgers. Yeah, everyone can make a burger, but a lot of them are drab and lifeless and you really regret wasting the calories on them. But some are superb as they are made by people who understand how important good ingredients are and are huge fans of ground beef products.

    Stretched analogy, and now I'm hungry.

  • pisswizard

    Yes, I'm also enjoying Elementary. Not enough to actually recommend it to anyone - sometimes not even enough to admit to friends that I watch it* - but it's solid and wonderfully consistent and I very much enjoy it

    *my friends are mostly screenwriting students so there's a fair amount of TV snobbery at play that I feel is kind of understandable. If your friends were gourmet chefs you wouldn't keep trying to get them to eat big macs.

  • alannaofdoom

    I will defend Elementary! And recommend it! Even to screenwriting students! I think that show is a perfect example of how to marry a procedural structure with longer stories examining the main characters. The amount of backstory we get on Holmes or Watson in each episode is right on the money. Take note, students.

  • Quatermain

    Now I want a cheeseburger, dammit. And fries. And a beer.

  • Ben

    I'm really enjoying both of these shows far more then I expected.

  • John W

    This is looking like Walking Dead's best season. Ditto American Horror Story.

    I feel sorry for Libby Masters.

    I don't know why I still watch New Girl I can't get into that show.

    I'm still trying to figure out why everyone hates Dana on Homeland. Imagine what it must be like to find out your father is a terrorist.

    I too like Brooklyn Nine Nine so go ahead and down vote me.

  • fluff_fluff

    That Vulture piece was total trolling, but all the comments were delightfully melodramatic with a lot of very serious quotation marks.

  • AudioSuede

    I know everyone's hating on Dana because she's a teenager or whatever, but honestly, her storyline is the one with the most emotional weight for me so far this season. Homeland was already so committed to implausible intrigue and love stories that don't make sense that seeing them take a few minutes to breathe every episode while wrapping their arms around someone as broken as Dana is (and rightfully should be after what she's been through) refreshes my belief that the show can make me feel something other than confusion and frustration.

  • Three_nineteen

    Emotional weight is great, but does it really have to come within the context of yet another whiny teenage relationship? Can't Dana find a therapist she likes, or yell her feelings at her mom like last week?

  • dizzylucy

    I feel like the idea of exploring what a family, and specifically a teenager, would go through in that situation is interesting. But something about the way they're actually doing it just isn't working for me. It always seems to drag the pacing down, and it didn't help that there was too much focus on her before this season too. Plus the new boyfriend just seems like a retread of the VP's son from before.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    Maybe, but I don't see how it is relevant.

    EDIT: The storyline, I mean.

  • Blake

    No Brooklyn Nine - Nine?

  • Foop

    This show has been my favorite of the fall, although I actually did not enjoy the last episode very much.

  • Michelle

    Why is this downvoted? That show is pretty charming for one that hasn't even aired 6 episodes yet.

  • Blake

    Totes.

    The show has pretty much gotten the cold shoulder from Pajiba so far so it's not surprising.

  • Green Lantern

    Agreed. If you don't like Samberg you're going to hate "Nine-Nine".

  • Michelle

    I think it's probably due to Samberg. I was never much of an SNL fan, so I have pretty limited experience with his work.

  • Blake

    Same here but Samberg was been great (or at least fairly likable) so far and last week's episode was easily the best of Fox's Tuesday night comedies.

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