Welcome to PeekTV, your daily look at the best that television has to offer. In each installment, we make three picks for the best shows to watch and…toss in a little extra.
Wednesday, May 17
What Happened Last Night?!
(To see what this intrepid TV news crew might be staring at, check out last night’s TV picks.)
“I Am Heath Ledger”
Spike, 10:00 p.m.
Synopsis: Heath Ledger was one of his generation’s brightest young actors. An immense and generous talent who burst upon the Hollywood scene, he quickly rose to the heights of fame before his tragic death.
Why You Should Watch: It’s hard to believe that it’s already been ten years since Ledger’s passing. Judging by David Ehrlich’s review of the film out of Tribeca last month, this doc’s greatest value is in paying tribute to the artist as a young man. It’s sad to dwell on potential, but the movie’s a reminder of what he had to offer as a performer.
“C-A–CAMP” – ABC, 8:30 p.m.
Synopsis: In the Season 1 finale, as the DiMeos get ready for a flight to JJ’s summer camp, Maya gets a surprise at the airport, while Ray sees his vacation as a chance to reinvent himself, and Jimmy and Dylan turn the trip into a father-daughter bonding moment.
Why You Should Watch: One of the best-reviewed freshmen comedies, “Speechless” has been a breath of fresh air for TV. As Ben Travers put in his review when the show premiered last fall, it “exemplifies simple human decency without emphasizing it. Its world exists as ours should: unembellished. And in that, its powerful message could become extraordinary.”
“Chinese Chariot Revealed” – PBS, 9:00 p.m.
Synopsis: Experts reconstruct and test China’s first super-weapon, the chariot, which dominated the battlefields for more than 1000 years.
Why You Should Watch: With so many newer docuseries popping up on streaming services and basic channels, it’s getting easier to overlook one of the lasting godfathers of public TV. Think of what you were planning on watching tonight and I guarantee you it’s not as cool as recreating an ancient Chinese chariot.
In case you missed it yesterday, Michael Schneider called for a merciful end to Pilot Season. (He makes a pretty convincing case.)
#BestTVLines2017 Contender of the Day
“Fargo” – Episode 2, “The Principle of Restricted Choice”
Sy Feltz: “A truck fulla…well, could be anything. Booze, guns, kinda demeanor this fella has.”
Emmit Stussy: “You think maybe it’s…I don’t even wanna say it out loud.”
Sy Feltz: “….slave girls?”
(For more of the weekly wonderfulness of Michael Stuhlbarg, check out our ongoing coverage of “Fargo” Year 3.)
Late Night Blind Recommendation – BNQT on Late Night with Seth Meyers
One of the more unconventional indie rock supergroups to ever materialize, this collection of band members from Franz Ferdinand, Travis, Band of Horses, and more is just a few weeks removed from their debut album. “Late Night” is the perfect landing spot for BNQT to make a TV stop — it’ll be interesting to see how all these styles mesh in a live performance.
Movie of the Night: “Don’t Breathe” – Starz, 7:30 p.m.
There’s claustrophobia and then there’s what Fede Alvarez and company cooked up in last year’s twist on the home invasion thriller. Amateur teenagers break into the house of a blind war vet and things… take some turns. A horror movie with real weight of consequences, it’s also the best-directed studio film in a long while. (You’ll never look at Stephen Lang the same way again.)
Back tomorrow with more PeekTV. In the meantime, life: it’s literally all we have.