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DAVID BIANCULLI

Founder / Editor

ERIC GOULD

Associate Editor

LINDA DONOVAN

Assistant Editor

Contributors

ALEX STRACHAN

MIKE HUGHES

GARY EDGERTON

ROGER CATLIN

KIM AKASS

GERALD JORDAN

MONIQUE NAZARETH

TOM BRINKMOELLER

NOEL HOLSTON

 
 
THURSDAY
DECEMBER 5
2019

BIANCULLI’S BEST BETS

 

CBS All Access, 3:00 a.m. ET

SEASON PREMIERE: The concept of this series – taking fairy tales and adapting them as very modern allegorical dramas – was much better than its execution last year. But now, for Season 2, it has a new chance to reboot and readjust. The primary plot threads, this season, borrow from three very familiar stories: Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Beauty and the Beast. That last one puts a gender-reversal spin on it – a spin that looks a lot like a female Phantom of the Opera.
 
  
 
 

ABC, 8:00 p.m. ET

This was yesterday’s Best TV Tomorrow video on TVWW, and today it’s not only the best of all Bianculli’s Best Bets, but the best Christmas special of the season, period. It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve seen this animated special, first telecast by CBS in 1965. Charles Schulz’s timeless Peanuts characters are worth watching, and embracing, again and again and again. And before I die, I hope to learn how to play “Linus and Lucy” on the piano. In two weeks, I’ll be halfway there: I’ll have the piano…
 
  
 
 

NBC, 8:00 p.m. ET

It seems like only last week that NBC presented an SNL Thanksgiving special – hey, it was only last week! – and tonight, it presents its Christmas counterpart. But it’s a welcome holiday treat, because it’s bound to include not only Alec Baldwin talking about his particular brand of holiday goodies (“Schweddy balls”), but Justin Timberlake and Andy Samberg singing about their particular brand of holiday gift-giving: “One, cut a hole in a box…”
 
  
 
 

CBS, 10:00 p.m. ET

This is part two of the episode about the exorcism that has thrown the entire team into disarray – and maybe even danger, and not only of disbanding.
 
  
 
 
 
 
Read and add comments HERE for today's Best Bets!
 
 

TV WE'RE WATCHING

  
   Visit our TV We're Watching page for these and other shows on our DVRs right now...



The Circus
Showtime
Sundays
8 PM ET  

The Crown
Netflix
Streaming 

Evil
CBS
Thursdays
10 PM ET   

The Good Place
NBC
Thursdays
9 PM ET  

His Dark Materials
HBO
Mondays
9 PM ET

Mr. Robot
USA
Sundays
10 PM ET
 
 

Mrs. Fletcher
HBO
Sundays
10:30 PM ET 

Ray Donovan
Showtime
Sundays
8 PM ET 

Servant
Apple TV+
Streaming 

Watchmen
HBO
Sundays
9 PM ET
 
 

VIDEO WORTH WATCHING

And Our Friends Are All Aboard– On the week and month that Abbey Roadis re-released on its golden anniversary, it doesn't seem that improper to go from golden to yellow — and to Ringo Starr's recent visit to NBC's The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, where the host, the guest, and the Roots all grabbed classroom instruments and dove into a very animated version of "Yellow Submarine." My grandkids can sing along. You should, too. – David Bianculli

 
 

BUT WAIT... THERE'S MORE!


FRESH AIR FAVES

Audio of Bianculli's favorite 'Fresh Air' reports, and the stories behind them...


FAVES FROM
"THE MORGUE"

Bianculli's favorite newspaper articles, and the stories behind them...


EXTRAS & FEEDBACK

Share your favorite TV in-jokes and first TV loves...
 
 
 

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Television today is better than ever, and David’s book, The Platinum Age of Television: From I Love Lucy to The Walking Dead, How TV Became Terrific explores it all and how we got here. (Now on sale for $12). David maps the evolution of the classic TV genres – the sitcom, the crime show, doctor dramas, the Western – and many others. "The Platinum Age is an effusive guidebook that plots the path from the 1950s’ Golden Age to today’s era... interviews with Carl Reiner, Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Matt Groening, Larry David, and Amy Schumer are high points. Bianculli has written a highly readable history." –The Washington Post
 
 
 

This Day in TV History

 
 
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