There are scores of TV shows out there, with dozens of new episodes each week, not to mention everything you can find on Hulu Plus, Netflix streaming, and HBO Go. How’s a viewer to keep up? To help you sort through all that television has to offer, we’re compiling the five best moments on TV each week. This time around, we have a TV antihero’s unplanned amputation and a stirring response to the Boston Marathon tragedy.
Jaime Lannister Gets Cut Down to Size (Literally)
You know Game of Thrones is back for real when a scene makes you and everyone you’re watching with scream, “Oh my God, WHAT?!?!” at the laptop screen. This season’s first such moment came when Jaime Lannister’s captor lets him believe he’s about to go free, pins him down, and delivers a populist lecture on the evils of nepotism…then chops off his right hand. The last thing the audience sees before the credit rolls is the typically suave Jaime screaming and waving around a grisly stump. It’s sort of a fitting punishment for a guy who crippled a ten-year-old boy for life, but viewers felt for Jaime nonetheless. The big question now is how this affects his reputation, not to mention self-perception, as the greatest warrior alive. Identity crisis alert!
Community Checks in on the Darkest Timeline
We may have our own Darkest Timeline Update, but this week Community gave us the real thing. In one of the few genuinely good episodes this season, our heroes took their boorish history professor hostage and sorted out some grade-related tension. As usual, however, the best moments came at the end, when the show served up not just one, but two plot twists: Chang is predictably faking amnesia and out to get the study group, but more interestingly, we got a peek into the Darkest Timeline, which we haven’t seen since last season’s brilliant “Remedial Chaos Theory.” Apparently Jeff is a one-armed, pervy lawyer and Annie is a murdering psychopath, and the whole bizarro gang is still out to destroy our heroes. Sounds exciting!
Stephen Colbert’s Awesome Ode to Boston
Proving that anything can be comedy so long as it’s handled with taste and wit, Stephen Colbert opened his show on Wednesday night by addressing the Boston Marathon bombings, turning his monologue into a paean to the toughness and endurance of the city and its marathon runners. With gentle digs at the Pilgrims, the Big Dig, and whalebone corsets, Colbert managed to simultaneously remind his viewers of the importance of standing in solidarity with Boston and take their minds off the very worst of the tragedy, showing him to be every bit the master comedian we know and love.
Patricia Finally Lives Up to Her Potential on Project Runway
Native designer Patricia has been something of a wild card on this season of Project Runway: the concept (inventive clothes inspired by her background) is great, but she’s never quite delivered. Yet in the first half of the season finale, which had the four finalists showing three preview looks each for their final collections, Patricia’s looks stood out from the pack, especially a show-stopping turquoise dress. Fingers crossed that Patricia can carry through to a strong finish, making her this season’s Cinderella story.
Jon Stewart Tears CNN a New One
Ever the media watchdog, Daily Show host Jon Stewart dedicated the entire first segment of the show on Wednesday to satirizing CNN’s inept coverage of the Boston investigation. Starting out sarcastic, Stewart then veered into the scathing (“It’s exclusive because it’s completely fucking wrong”) and finally into straight-up parody, featuring John Oliver and Jessica Williams (“I heard if you have sex in the butt it doesn’t count!”). It’s both hilarious and a vicious takedown of the irresponsibility bred by the 24-hour news, cycle from one of the shrewdest voices of reason in media.