Hey not sure what to watch this week on the small screen? No worries #SetTheVCR is here to help you make some of those decisions easier. Each week Sammy Younan and I will give you our picks for each day of the coming week. Please note – All times are Eastern Standard Time so please adjust for your time zone.

Man, I’m tired. 2020 has really taken a toll on most of us and after last weeks drama around the election and that not really slowing down for another few weeks. We all need to refocus on some entertainment to take our minds off the political hijinks in America and have some fun for a change. Plus, we are still dealing with a pandemic that just won’t go away. We need nice things again.

The sad thing about surviving horror Halloween is that even if you make it to Sun up…you only have holiday/Christmas movies to look forward to. With this #SetTheVCR we’ve done our best to delay movies with some variation of jingle in the title; instead, hopefully, these recommendations fill you with warm cheer.

Sammy Younan

Monday, November 9

Speed (3am / Starz on Crave) – On July 15, 1988 action movies as a genre was utterly transformed by the Holiday Hit Die Hard. It became a template and so throughout the 90s we got Die Hard on a Boat (Under Siege, 1992), Die Hard on a Plane (Passenger 57, 1992), Die Hard on a Mountain (Cliffhanger, 1993), Die Hard at a Hockey Stadium (Sudden Death, 1995) and of course Die Hard on a Bus (Speed, 1994). The premise of Speed is incredibly simple yet wildly tension inducing: “There’s a bomb on a bus. Once the bus goes 50 miles an hour, the bomb is armed. If it drops below 50, it blows up. What do you do? What do you do?” Speed the 1994 hit and one of Quentin Tarantino’s 20 Favorite Films Since 1992 is now on Crave. Ok, hotshot…what do you do? (Sammy)

Industry (10pm / HBO)SERIES PREMIERE! A new show taking a look at the cut throat world of finance. I know not a lot of sympathetic characters in this world. Still HBO knows how to do darkly complicated stories around morally compromised individuals. This show looks to carry on that tradition much to the chagrin of many 99%’ers. Which is also a good thing as controversary is usually good in most entertainment still today. (Mr. Green)

Tuesday, November 10

A Teacher: Miniseries (3am / Hulu) – So Kate Mara is a teacher and she’s engaged with ah…extracurricular activities with a student. Guess she doesn’t give an F. They get an E for Effort for wanting to explore male victimhood especially through the lens of power dynamics. We really don’t know how to talk about that when we C it. Though if we’re being honest that’s a hard sell I mean Kate Mara is a lovely woman I dunno if I’d qualify that D as abuse. (By now you know how I B…do I get any credit for not using the phrase “head” of the class?) (Sammy)

Swamp Thing (8pm / CW) – Sammy and I both recommended this show when it first hit the airwaves on DC Universe. Now the rest of the world gets to check it out on CW. Like many, I hope the ratings are good enough that it sparks the desire to bring it back for more seasons in the near future. If not you still get a chance to see some of ol’swampy doing his thing each week. (Mr. Green)

Wednesday, November 11

The Liberator (3 am / Netflix) – Today is Remembrance Day, a day we set aside to commemorate those who have perished in armed conflicts. Do you remember that weird movie from 2006 A Scanner Darkly? It was kinda animated but not really? The Liberator’s animation is like that: a Saving Private Ryan World War II drama based on a nonfiction book by Alex Kershaw. It follows a diverse infantry unit through the fight to liberate Europe, ending with the liberation of the Dachau concentration camp. So clearly it fits November 11’s themes. Oh, and the animation effect was supplied by Trioscope (hybrid animation technology that merges live-action performance with computer graphics. Basically an updated form of the rotoscoping we saw in Scanner Darkly). So a moment of silence for those men and women we lost in older conflicts then hit play on this unique visual tale. (Sammy)

The Liberator (3am / Netflix) – See above from Sammy. It looks really good. (Mr. Green)

Thursday, November 12

Colin Quinn & Friends: A Parking Lot Comedy Show (3 am / HBO Max) – Sigh: the first social distancing comedy special. I’m not sure if this’ll work or how it’ll affect the comedy or the comedy experience so let’s get this a shot. “The special is part documentary and part stand-up with comedians who will tape at a repurposed drive-in movie theater in Brooklyn.” Kinda makes you Marge Murmur right? We got Colin Quinn of course…Rachel Feinstein, Keith Robinson a few others. Is this the future or a one-off? (Sammy)

Star Trek: Discovery (9pm / CTV Sci-Fi) – As much as I enjoyed the second season of Disco, this third season has really been firing on all cylinders. Sure, there were plenty comparing the premise to Andromeda but that is not really the case. It’s a trope in sci-fi to rebuild an old social structure after the fall of civilization so nothing really was stolen there. What I have been enjoying immensely has been the total lack of restraint on the writers and the stories they are telling. Now they are showing what they can do without canon holding them down and having fun in that story-telling. It has really been a joy to watch each week. This week we get to meet the Federation and what remains of it. Although it doesn’t look to be all pleasant for the crew. (Mr. Green)

Friday, November 13

Fireball: Visitors from Darker Worlds (3 am / Apple TV) – Happy Friday the 13th! If you’re interested in camping at Crystal Lake this weekend do take a moment to look up at the stars before you’re beheaded with a machete. Fireball is Werner Herzog’s warm uniquely German-accented fascination with meteorites. And not just in the sky but how they literally impact us and our culture here on earth. While this might be triggering for dinosaurs for the rest of us who do not spend enough time looking up this all about wonder. As in I wonder what’s out there…hmmm? (Sammy)

The Mandalorian (3am / Disney+) – We are just two episodes in and things are continuing to spiral out of control for Mando and the Child. We got more space western in the first episode and a good round sci-fi creepy crawlies in the second. This week I have a feeling that based on nothing but a hunch that this will be the sea-port/ocean adventure hinted at in the trailer. I could be wrong but I don’t think that will play out any other way. Damn I love this show. (Mr. Green)

Saturday, November 14

Dark Waters (3am / Crave) – Lotta people haven’t seen Dark Waters. “A corporate defense attorney takes on an environmental lawsuit against a chemical company that exposes a lengthy history of pollution.” This time your Erin Brockovich is Mark Ruffalo who makes an ideal lawyer: you wouldn’t like him when he’s angry. (Sammy)

Mr. Green’s Pick of the Week

Jingle Jangle (Anytime / Netflix) – Now we have moved past Halloween and Remembrance Day it’s time to start the long slog towards Christmas. Which means endless holiday movies celebrating the jolliest time of year. Not a huge fan of musicals I’m still actually interested in this film. Plus, with an all-star cast such as this, it will be hard to pass it up. A great Saturday night film for the family or if you are just trying to do as much as possible to brighten up 2020 because we all know that feeling. (Mr. Green)

Sunday, November 15

Sammy’s Pick of the Week

The Reagans (8pm / Showtime) – The beginning of the end for America: once it elected Ronald Regan. Really and tragically since Ronald, every president since has been evil and oppressive; 2020 doesn’t seem to be a reverse. So this is a fantastic opportunity to understand how we got here; to put a deeply conservative presidency into a digestible context. This 4 part series is directed by Where’s My Roy Cohn? director Matt Tyrnauer. Cue the Land of Confusion: There are too many men/too many people/Making too many problems/And not much love to go round: Can’t you see this is a land of confusion? (Sammy)

Supermarket Sweep (8pm / ABC) – Growing up in the ’80s I used to watch this show in its original incarnation. Like most people I thought I would be great at it… and I still think that. However, this has the feel of the latest Family Feud and might be really great even with all the hijinks. That’s because of Leslie Jones who is great and super funny, especially if you have seen her Game of Jones sketches with Jimmy Fallon. it was solid and I feel this is more of the same. (Mr. Green)

Well, there you go plenty of options for the week ahead. Enjoy yourself and watch responsibly.

If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!