What have you been watching? Including The Magicians

Magicians - The Bad News Bear

It’s “What have you been watching?”, your chance to recommend to fellow TMINE readers anything you’ve been watching this week

Russian Doll

This week’s reviews

While US TV has only been serving up mini-series such as I Am The Night, streaming services have been taking up the slack this week. Elsewhere, I’ve reviewed two new Internet shows:

And this week’s Orange Wednesday gave us two film reviews: Split (2016) and Das Boot (1981), as well as a glimpse at Polar (2019)

Das Boot

New shows

Sky Deutschland’s Das Boot sequel started on Sky last night and I’m aiming to have that as next week’s Boxset Monday. I might also be able to preview Time Traveling Bong if I get a chance. Plus I’m sure there’ll be something new on Netflix.

Magicians - The Bad News Bear

The regulars

Magnum P.I. took another break this week, so after the jump, I’ll be looking at: Cavendish, Corporate, Counterpart, The Magicians, The Orville, The Passage, and Star Trek: Discovery. See you in a mo!

TV shows

TMINE recommends has all the TV shows TMINE has ever recommended and TV Reviews A-Z lists every TV show ever reviewed

Shows I’m watching but not necessarily recommending

Cavendish (Canada: CBC)

1×5 – Charlottetown Nights

The action moves very slightly from Cavendish to Charlottetown. There’s a hypnotist, but the most fun is to be had with a very Canadian motorcycle gang. Not hugely funny, some bad fight scenes and very slightly racist, but some decent laughs to be had.

Episode reviews: Initial review

The Orville (US: Fox; UK: Fox UK)

2×6 – A Happy Refrain

There was a point in ST:TNG where you realised that the producers had definitely lost it and had started to disappear up their own backsides. That was roughly when everyone started heading off to watch classical music recitals.

Want to relive that moment again? Well, now you can with The Orville, which decided to invite an entire orchestra this time, while simultaneously resurrecting the old ST:TNG episode In Theory. Erk.

Still, it was also a good opportunity to see the voiceover cast in the flesh for a change and there was a least both some comedy and some character work, so not all was lost for sure. But sometimes a tribute can be too loving, don’t you think?

Episode reviews: Initial review, Verdict

The Passage (US: Fox; UK: Fox UK)

1×4 – Whose Blood is That?

After shaking the formula up in the previous episode, we’re now in the new normal and it’s not all that fun to have it again. Yes, the vampires are psychically plotting. Yes, the stupid vampire-derived medicine doesn’t work. Yes, everyone running the facility is an idiot. Got that. Can we move things along a bit now?

Episode reviews: 1

Recommended shows

Corporate (US: Comedy Central; UK: Comedy Central)

2×4 – Thanks!

While the ‘main plot’ of trying to get a co-worker fired for various reasons wasn’t hugely funny and was more the usual nihilism we’ve come to expect, the b-plot about email etiquette truly was a well observed piece of comedy genius that also plays back to the early season 1 episodes. You’ll never compose an email the same way again after watching this.

Episode reviews: Initial review, Verdict

Counterpart (US: Starz; UK: StarzPlay)

2×8 – In From The Cold

A lot of sitting around chatting, which worked as well as always, but we finally seem to be letting JK Simmons do things again, which is nice. Blimey, for an old bloke, he’s a bit ripped, isn’t it?

Episode reviews: Initial review, Verdict

The Magicians (US: Syfy; UK: Syfy)

4×3 – The Bad News Bear

Much better than the previous two episodes, thanks mainly to having the regular characters back, as well as some pleasingly funny and imaginative situations involving magic confidence tricks. I’m not sure ‘the Monster’ plotline is that great and having Alice stuck in the Library the whole time isn’t a winning plan, either, but a properly enjoyable piece, at least.

Episode reviews: Initial review, Verdict

Star Trek: Discovery (US: CBS All Access; UK: Netflix)

2×3 – Point of Light

Oh God, that was terrible. Everything that was terrible in the first season but with very little to counterbalance a raw blancmange of tedious Klingon, fan fic-level character-plotting, unspeakable dialogue, terrible acting and forced spin-off plotting.

It’s a shame because I was really excited at the start of the season by the prospect of Captain Pike, The Enterprise Spock et al, but they’re utterly squandering it with fan-pleasing idiocy. Even a fungal infection was better than that.

Plus it’s noticeable that Top Trekkie, Lovely Wife, almost had to be forced to watch it last night. When she takes persuading to watch Trek, you know something is going badly wrong.

Episode reviews: Initial review


  • Rob Buckley

    I’m Rob Buckley, a journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of although you might have heard me on the podcast Lockdown Land or Radio 5 Live’s Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I’ve edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for TV producers magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it “web site for urban hedonists” The Tribe. Since going freelance, I've contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network, TV Scoop and The Custard TV.

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