TV Nov. 27 to Dec. 3!

OK I’m a bit behind on a couple of fronts. I missed a Cousteau doc! For shame! But also, I have decided to switch from twice to once a week, starting… now! Only I’m playing catch-up having not had time to post last week so starting now! I will be posting a week’s worth of new-TV program notes every Sunday (catching up from last Thursday through to Saturday, Dec. 4. It’s a busy time at d2tv industries. I hope you will join me in congratulating the blah blah blah blah (I am too busy scabbling together all my various and sundry part time and freelance work to do the thing i love, which is this. You get the short end of the stick and for that I am sorry. Though I love you unrelentingly, as you know.). Onward!

Catching up

Becoming Cousteau (doc premiere on Disney+, National Geographic) “Capt. Jacques-Yves Cousteau was one of the 20th century’s great explorers, a filmmaker and beloved adventurer who documented the exotic wonders below the ocean with pioneering equipment that yielded a Cannes Film Festival-winning film, two Academy Awards®, and a pair of iconic and long-running television shows, “The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau” and “The Cousteau Odyssey.” His work became synonymous with life in the sea and on his famous boat, the Calypso. He authored over 50 books on his aquatic life and invented the Aqua-Lung, advancing the boundaries of scuba diving. Yet, it was as an environmentalist that Cousteau would have his most lasting impacts, alerting the world about the warming oceans decades before the climate crisis made headlines. Instrumental in protecting Antarctica and taking part in the first Earth Summit, Cousteau’s insight into what needs to be done for the planet continues to inspire generations.”

Thursday Nov. 25

The Beatles: Get Back (doc series premiere Disney+) “From three-time Oscar-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson comes … a three-part documentary series that takes audiences back in time to The Beatles’ intimate recording sessions during a pivotal moment in music history. … Shot in January 1969 and compiled from over 60 hours of unseen footage (filmed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg) more than 150 hours of unheard audio, all of which has been brilliantly restored. … [It follows] John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr as they plan their first live show in over two years and charts the writing and rehearsing of 14 new songs, originally intended for release on an accompanying live album. The series features — for the first time in its entirely — The Beatles’ last live performance as a group, the unforgettable rooftop concert on London’s Savile Row, as well as other songs and classic compositions featured on the band’s final two albums, Abbey Road and Let It Be.”

Super Crooks (animated series premiere Netflix) “Luck’s never been on their side, but this crew of small-time crooks with super powers recruited by none other than Johnny Bolt are rolling the dice on one last heist. Their target: A ruthless super-powered crime boss…. What can go wrong? Super Crooks is based on the graphic novel of the same name by comic book legend Mark Millar and artist Leinil Yu, directed by Motonobu Hori (Carole & Tuesday) and told in 13x 30-minute episodes produced by renowned Japanese anime studio bones.”

F Is for Family (Season 5 premiere Netflix) “From comedian Bill Burr and EmmyⓇ award-winner Michael Price, F is for Family transports viewers back to the 1970s, a time when political correctness, helicopter parenting and indoor smoking bans weren’t part of anyone’s vocabulary, let alone the norm. Featuring the voices of Burr, Laura Dern, Justin Long, Sam Rockwell and more.”

Gossip Girl (midseason premiere Crave) “Season 1 of HBO Max’s GOSSIP GIRL returns with two episodes which are available for streaming now. Developed by showrunner Joshua Safran, a writer and executive producer on the original series, thisextension of the pop culture classic takes us back to the Upper East Side, finding a new generation of New York private school teens being introduced to social surveillance nine years after the original blogger’s website went dark. Part two of GOSSIP GIRL continues to explore just how much social media — and the landscape of New York itself — has changed in the intervening years. GOSSIP GIRL follows a weekly streaming schedule, with new episodes streaming Thursdays.”

Friday Nov. 26

Beyka (premiere CBC Gem) “The daughter of a multiracial couple is kidnapped in South Africa in 1994. She escapes and as an adult becomes a detective. Continuing to deal with her past trauma, Reyka Gama (Kim Engelbrecht, Dominion) uses her skills to raise her child and solve mysteries that have challenged others.”

This Time with Alan Partridge (Season 2 premiere CBC Gem) “In a spoof of current affairs programmes, actor Steve Coogan (The Trip) reprises the character first introduced to BBC audiences 25 years ago.  Due to the sudden illness of its regular host, “The Show” welcomes Alan Partridge as its guest presenter. Spreading his usual mix of banality and wincingly tasteless comments, Alan tries to keep proceedings ticking along while everything around him crumbles.”

‘Twas the Fight Before Christmas (doc premiere  Apple TV+) “follows the story of a North Idaho neighborhood turned upside down by one man’s obsession with bringing Christmas cheer to all, through the biggest community Christmas event America has ever seen. Christmas-loving lawyer Jeremy Morris’ plan hits a snag when the home owners’ association informs him that the event violates the rules of the neighborhood. A contentious fight over the festivities erupts and things snowball out of control. As the situation escalates, the film asks the question, who wins when different rights and interests collide? Director Becky Read pieces together the polarized perspectives in this quirky Christmas tale about freedoms, with a message about differences and tolerance at its heart.

The Curse of Von Dutch (doc series premiere Amazon Prime Video) “While the brand is known for its trucker hats worn by the likes of Britney Spears, Paris Hilton and Justin Timberlake, this docuseries tells the unbelievable true story behind the rise and fall of the 2000’s most iconic fashion trend. In this epic character-driven saga, Venice Beach surfers, gangsters, European garmentos and Hollywood movers and shakers all vie for control of the infamous brand — pushing it from obscurity to one of the most recognizable labels on Earth. After a decade of backstabbing, greed, and bloodshed, their lives — and pop culture — will never be the same.

On the Spectrum (premiere CBC Gem) “Three mid-late twenty-year-old roommates, all on the autism spectrum, share a sheltered apartment, learning to cope with the world around them. ON THE SPECTRUM allows glimpses into the intricate lives of young autistic adults and offers their unique view and interpretation of day-to-day life.”

A Castle for Christmas (movie premiere Netflix) “Famed author, Sophie Brown (Brooke Shields), travels to Scotland hoping to buy a small castle of her own, but the prickly owner, Duke Myles (Cary Elwes), is reluctant to sell to a foreigner. Working to find a compromise, the pair constantly butt heads, but they just may find something more than they were expecting.”

Die in a Gunfight (movie premiere Crave app) “starring Alexandra Daddario (THE WHITE LOTUS) and Diego Boneta (UNDEREMPLOYED) … Mary (Daddario) and Ben (Boneta) are the star-crossed black sheep of two powerful families engaged in a centuries-long feud – and they’re about to reignite an affair after many years apart. Their forbidden love will trigger the dominoes that will draw in Mukul (Wade Allain-Marcus, INSECURE), Ben’s best friend, who owes him a life debt; Terrence (Justin Chatwin, SHAMELESS), Mary’s would-be protector-turned-stalker; Wayne (Travis Fimmel, VIKINGS), an Aussie hitman with an open mind and a code of ethics; and his free-spirited girlfriend, Barbie (Emmanuelle Chriqui, SUPERMAN & LOIS). As fists and bullets fly, it becomes clear that violent delights will have violent ends.”

Saturday Nov. 27

Robin Robin (animated premiere Netflix) “In this stop-motion short film, a bird raised by mice begins to question where she belongs and sets off on a daring journey of self-discovery.”

Sunday Nov. 28

Elves (series premiere Netflix) “Hoping to reconnect over Christmas, a family of four travels to a remote island in the Danish archipelago, only to find it controlled by members of a strongly religious community living in balance with fierce creatures in the woods revealed to be… elves. Real, monstrous beings that inspired the folklore and myths we all know. When the girl in the family finds and brings home a baby elf, she inadvertently disrupts the balance and throws everyone on the island into a life-or-death battle for faith, family and pure survival. The cast includes Sonja Steen, Milo Toke Bendix Campanale, Ann Eleonora Jørgensen, Vivelill Søgaard Holm, Rasmus Hammerich, Peder Thomas Pedersen, Lila Nobel and Lukas Løkken. The 6 episode series is created and written by Stefan Jaworski, directed by Roni Ezra and produced by Elise H. Lund for Miso Film. Elves is based on an original idea from Jannik Tai Mosholt and Christian Potalivo, who also serve as executive producers together with Peter Bose and Jonas Allen from Miso Film.”

The Waltons’ Homecoming (special premiere 7pmCT CW) “The Walton family is excited to learn that John Sr. will be coming home for Christmas during the winter of 1933. However, when a storm threatens his arrival and he’s nowhere to be found, John Boy embarks on a life-changing journey to find him.”

Monday Nov. 29

14 Peaks: Nothing Is Impossible (doc premiere Netflix) explores Nepal’s deep connection to high-altitude mountaineering through the eyes of Nirmal “Nimsdai” Purja, a fearless, fun-loving Nepali climber on a quest he dubs “Project Possible”—to summit all 14 of the world’s 8,000-meter mountains in just seven months, breaking the previous record of seven years. With a team of skilled Sherpas, he traverses Mount Everest, K2, and other iconic peaks through extreme weather, life-or-death decisions, and the emotional weight of his mother’s illness back home. 14 Peaks is a thrilling, action-packed story about courage, perseverance, and pushing the limits of human endurance. Written, directed, and produced by Torquil Jones. Executive produced by Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi. Produced by Noah Media Group and Little Monster Films.

Tuesday Nov. 30

Lead Me Home (doc premiere Netflix) “In Lead Me Home, tents become bedrooms; trucks become washrooms; parks become kitchens. Love occurs, as does strife and violence. People make homes for themselves wherever they end up. When directors Pedro Kos and Jon Shenk set out to tackle the subject of homelessness, they had one goal: to humanize the experience, in whatever form that might take. The pair set out to depict the stories of people living on the street who, were it not for a vast set of unfortunate circumstances—addiction, mental illness, sexual abuse, homophobia, healthcare costs, disability—would be living no differently from those sleeping comfortably mere blocks or even just floors away. In the shadow of boundless real estate development proliferating in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle, Kos and Shenk filmed the daily lives of more than two dozen subjects over three years to provide a slice-of-life portrayal of what it’s like to experience homelessness in America today. Conceived as a two-part visual symphony shot in distinct production periods, the film opens a window into a parallel world hiding in plain sight and challenges the audience to feel the scale, scope and diversity of unsheltered America. Lead Me Home marks the first time Emmy winners Kos and Shenk have co-directed together and is a co-production of Netflix and Actual Films, produced by Bonni Cohen, Serin Marshall and Richard Berge.”

Mo Amer: Mohammed in Texas (comedy premiere Netflix)

The Summit of the Stars (animated movie premiere Netflix) “A breathtaking adaptation of the manga series by renowned manga artist Jirô Taniguchi and writer Baku Yumemakura, THE SUMMIT OF THE GODS follows a young Japanese photojournalist, Fukamachi, who finds a camera that could change the history of mountaineering. It leads him to the mysterious Habu, an outcast climber believed missing for years. Fukamachi enters a world of obsessive mountaineers hungry for impossible conquests on a journey that leads him, step by step, towards the summit of the gods.”

Wednesday Dec. 1

Adrienne (hbo doc premiere HBO Crave app) “So many stories left to tell. Adrienne, an HBO original documentary about the life and legacy of actress, director, and screenwriter Adrienne Shelly, premieres December 1 at 8pm on HBOMax.”

Zoey’s Extraordinary Christmas (special premiere via … Got Roku https://www.roku.com/en-ca/about/company) “Hi streamers! We’ve got some extraordinary news to share. You don’t need to wait much longer to welcome Zoey and the rest of the gang from Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist back to your screens.  Mark your calendars because Zoey’s Extraordinary Christmas will premiere on The Roku Channel on Wednesday, December 1! We’ve had a blast working with the cast and crew to make this film and can’t wait to share it with you soon. Here’s a first-look at Zoey’s Extraordinary Christmas:”

The Power of the Dog (movie premiere after theatre release on Nov. 17) “Severe, pale-eyed, handsome, Phil Burbank is brutally beguiling. All of Phil’s romance, power and fragility is trapped in the past and in the land: He can castrate a bull calf with two swift slashes of his knife; he swims naked in the river, smearing his body with mud. He is a cowboy as raw as his hides.” Written and directed by Jane Campion and including stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Thomasin McKenzie, Frances Conroy, Keith Carradine, Peter Carroll, Adam Beach Producers: Emile Sherman, Iain Canning, Roger Frappier, Jane Campion, Tanya Seghatchian”

Lost in Space (Season 3 premiere Netflix) “In the third and final season of Lost in Space, the stakes are higher than ever and the Robinson family’s survival instincts will be put to the ultimate test. After a year of being trapped on a mysterious planet, Judy, Penny, Will and the Robot must lead the 97 young Colonists in a harrowing evacuation — but not before secrets are unearthed that will change their lives forever. Meanwhile John and Maureen — with Don at their side — must battle overwhelming odds as they try to reunite with their kids. The Robinsons will have to grapple with the emotional challenge of not just being lost — but being separated from the ones they love… as they face the greatest alien threat yet.”

Thursday Dec. 2

Single all the Way (Netflix) “Desperate to avoid his family’s judgment about his perpetual single status, Peter (Michael Urie) convinces his best friend Nick (Philemon Chambers) to join him for the holidays and pretend that they’re now in a relationship. But when Peter’s mother (Kathy Najimy) sets him up on a blind date with her handsome trainer James (Luke Macfarlane)— the plan goes awry. SINGLE ALL THE WAY also stars Jennifer Coolidge, Barry Bostwick, and Jennifer Robertson.  Director: Michael Mayer._

Friday Dec. 3

Mixtape (Netflix) “On the eve of Y2k, orphaned, awkward 12-year-old Beverly Moody (Gemma Brooke Allen) discovers a broken mixtape crafted by her teen parents who died in a car accident when she was a baby. Raised by her grandmother Gail (Julie Bowen), a former teen mom herself who finds it painful to speak about her late daughter, Beverly sees this mixtape as a chance to finally learn more about her parents. So she sets out on a journey to find all the songs on the tape. Along the way, she makes friends with her quirky neighbor, Ellen (Audrey Hsieh); intimidatingly tough, Nicky (Olga Petsa); and Anti (Nick Thune), an anti-everything record store owner who’s the key to finding these tracks, and a renewed bond between Gail and Beverly.”

Wolf (movie premiere in cinemas and later on Netflix) “Believing he is a wolf trapped in a human body, Jacob (George MacKay) eats, sleeps, and lives like a wolf – much to the shock of his family. When he’s sent to a clinic, Jacob and his animal-bound peers are forced to undergo increasingly extreme forms of ‘curative’ therapies. However once he meets the mysterious Wildcat (Lily-Rose Depp), and as their friendship blossoms into an undeniable infatuation, Jacob is faced with a challenge: will he renounce his true self for love. Director: Nathalie Biancheri Writer: Nathalie Biancheri Producers: Jessie Fisk, Jane Doolan Cast: George MacKay, Lily-Rose Depp, Paddy Considine, Eileen Walsh.”

The Coyotes (? Netflix) “A close group of summer campers finds diamonds in the woods, setting off a wild ordeal that tests their friendship — and puts their lives in danger. Starring:Louka Minnella, Kassim Meesters, Sarah Ber. Creators:Vincent Lavachery, Axel du Bus, Anne-Lise Morin. 

Silent Night (movie premiere AMC+)From producers Matthew Vaughn (Kingsman franchise), Trudie Styler (Moon) and Celine Rattray (The Kids Are Alright), Silent Night follows parents Nell (Knightley) and Simon (Goode), who have invited their closest friends to join their family for Christmas dinner at their idyllic home in the English countryside. As the group comes together, it feels like old times – but behind all of the laughter and merriment, something is not quite right. The world outside is facing impending doom, and no amount of gifts, games or Prosecco can make mankind’s imminent destruction go away. Surviving the holidays just got a lot more complicated.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EG43l1SrLK8

Harlem (series premiere Amazon Prime Video) From Girl’s Trip creator Tracy Oliver “Harlem is a new single-camera comedy following four stylish and ambitious best girlfriends in Harlem, New York City: a rising star professor struggling to make space for her love life; a savvy tech entrepreneur always dating someone new; a no-filter singer; and a hopeless romantic fashion designer. Together, they level up into the next phase of their careers, relationships, and big city dreams. The series stars Meagan Good as “Camille,” Grace Byers as “Quinn,” Shoniqua Shandai as “Angie,” Jerrie Johnson as “Tye,” and Tyler LePley as “Ian.” Additional recurring guest stars include Jasmine Guy as “Patricia,” Whoopi Goldberg as “Dr. Elise Pruitt,” Andrea Martin as “Robin,” Robert Ri’chard as “Shawn,” Juani Feliz as “Isabela,” Kate Rockwell as “Ana,” and Sullivan Jones as “Jameson.” ”

Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Premiere Disney+) “The first book in Jeff Kinney’s worldwide bestselling series comes to Disney+ in the all-new animated adventure “Diary of a Wimpy Kid.” Greg Heffley is a scrawny but ambitious kid with an active imagination and big plans to be rich and famous – he just has to survive middle school first. To make matters worse, Greg’s lovable best friend Rowley seems to coast through life and succeed at everything without even trying! As details of his hilarious – and often disastrous – attempts to fit in fill the pages of his journal, Greg learns to appreciate true friends and the satisfaction that comes from standing up for what is right. Directed by Swinton Scott (“Futurama”) and written and produced by Jeff Kinney, “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” features the voices of Brady Noon (“The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers”) as Greg Heffley, Ethan William Childress (“mixed-ish”) as Rowley Jefferson, and Chris Diamantopoulos (“Silicon Valley”) as Frank Heffley.”

The Rescue (premiere Disney+) “chronicles the against-all-odds story that transfixed the world in 2018: the daring rescue of twelve boys and their coach from deep inside a flooded cave in Northern Thailand. “The Rescue” shines a light on the high-risk world of cave diving, the astounding courage and compassion of the rescuers, and the shared humanity of the international community that united to save the boys.”

d2tvblog@gmail.com

Thank you so much for reading this far. So, what is d2tv? Glad you asked. There is so much great TV right now, but too much to easily keep track of. So this blog is me sharing my lifelong habit of tracking TV in general, but premieres in particular — series and seasons and one-offs on Canadian broadcast, cable and streaming. And since I’m doing it for myself, I share it here with you, every Sunday and Thursday. So thanks, fellow traveller, for stopping by. If you want this sent to your email inbox instead, shoot me an email or join the 50! others who subscribe (free, no strings) by typing your email into the box at the bottom of d2tv.wordpress.com, where it reads: “Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.” Who am I, Denise Duguay? Been writing about TV since 1986 or so at the Winnipeg Sun, then at the Montreal Gazette, currently at the Winnipeg Free Press and of course here, for myself and YOU! You might want to know – no judgement – I hate and mostly ignore “non-scripted” reality programming. (BECAUSE IT’S SO MEAN, THAT’S WHY.)

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