Big Vivvy, Little Vivvy
Bill Hader and Fred Armisen’s Documentary Now! kicked off with “Sandy Passage,” tackling perhaps the most iconic documentary of them all: Grey Gardens. Interpreting Big and Little Edie as characters Big and Little Vivvy, Hader and Armisen (and Seth Meyers!) craft a parody that fans of Grey Gardens will instantly recognize — and everyone else probably won’t understand. But hey, narrowly targeted comedies are basically why IFC exists! Stay tuned for send-ups of VICE, among others.
David Simon Shows Us an (Anti)Hero
For the next three weeks, HBO will spend its Sunday nights airing David Simon, William F. Zorzi, and Paul Haggis’ six-part miniseries on the political fight over housing segregation in Yonkers, two parts at a time. This Sunday, we were introduced to Nick Wasiscko (Oscar Isaac), opponents like Councilman Spallone (Alfred Molina) and Mary Dorman (Catherine Keener), and the public housing residents whose lives they’re fighting over. Also, lots and lots of late-’80s period detail.
The Bad Kind of Garry
Yup, two R’s. That’s just the kind of buzzkill Fred Armisen’s character in Difficult People is. He’s also Billy Eichner/Epstein’s brother, and the host of the most depressing Yom Kippur break-fast in the tristate area. Other highlights: a Jewish housewife named “Ruchl,” a bratty teen going through her “c**t phase,” and a girl whose bat mitzvah theme is “It Gets Better” — but she’s not gay, “just chubby.” A great use of a guest star, and a great example of Difficult People doubling down on its unabashedly New York-specific humor.
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Why’d OutKast Break Up?
Because Andre 3000, in Jordan Peele-as-Big Boi’s words, “lost his fuckin’ mind.” This week’s Key & Peele highlight sees the duo accidentally reunite in an Atlanta coffee shop where Andre 3000 rolls through, orders a green latte with “foam on the bottom,” and encourages Big Boi to look into a handheld windmill with his third eye. Props to the costuming department for outfitting Keegan-Michael Key with a Robin Hood hat and chartreuse pantaloons for the ages.
The Most Terrifying Clip Show Ever Made
Well into its second season, Rick and Morty has cemented its reputation as one of the darkest, most inventive series on TV, and “Total Rickall” is a perfect example: a parody of the classic sitcom “clip show” episode that uses the show’s cartoon format to create not just new clips, but dozens of new characters (Mrs. Refrigerator, Mr. Poopybutthole) and a framing device that involves alien mind parasites trying to take over the world. Throw in some truly disturbing subplots about the Smith family’s baggage and you’ve got one of the densest, funniest half-hours Dan Harmon and Justin Roiland have produced yet.