Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Death Investigations Season 6, Ep 12
This week's topic is on the subject of the folk who's job it is to examine dead bodies in forensic autopsies, coroners and medical examiners, jobs that are often woefully underfunded and ill-equipped, and in the case of coroners, doesn't even require a medical license or degree to perform, often being an elected position. Cases of abuse and incompetence are rife, and we've known this since 1857. Here it is on Youtube (22m). Also covered is a group entered in the Eurovision contest, Hatari, who are, in their own words, an "Islandic Award-Winning Anti-Capitalist Techno Performance BDSM Band." LWT is off next week.
Chernobyl: Open Wide, O Earth Season 1, Ep 3
The Chernobyl Commission begins the investigation into the causes of the disaster. [more inside]
Gentleman Jack: Let's have another look at your past perfect Season 1, Ep 5
Reverend Ainsworth arrives in Halifax and, with encouragement from Mrs. Priestley, sets his sights on Ann Walker. Meanwhile, Lister presses on with the transformation of her estate, but her ambitious plans threaten to lead her into trouble. [more inside]
Barry: berkman > block Season 2, Ep 8
Barry is out for vengeance; Sally takes an acting detour.
Game of Thrones: Game of Throne Episode 8.6 Show Only Season 8, Ep 6
In the aftermath of the attack on King's Landing, the survivors deal with the future. [more inside]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: The Green New Deal Season 6, Ep 11
This week's main topic is the Green New Deal, a piece of legislation the right endlessly maligns despite the fact it was defeated in the Senate weeks ago. According to Fox News, the bill takes away hamburgers, airplanes and cars, despite the fact that it's a non-binding piece of legislation. What's really in the Green New Deal? The main story is on YouTube (19m).
Gentleman Jack: Most women are dull and stupid Season 1, Ep 4
Dr. Belcombe confirms that Lister is the perfect tonic for Ann Walker's nervous disorder. When news of a friend's death arrives, Ann's desperate reaction makes Lister suspect that she has secrets of her own. [more inside]
Veep: The Final Season Season 7, Ep 0
Selina Meyer runs for President again. [more inside]
Barry: The Audition Season 2, Ep 7
Barry prepares for his first audition under Gene's guidance; Sally takes a stand in a meeting with a major TV producer; Noho Hank bares all.
Game of Thrones: Game of Throne Episode 8.5 Show Only Season 8, Ep 5
The armies of Cersei Lannister and Daenerys Targaryen face each other at Kings Landing.
Chernobyl: Full series Season 1, Ep 0
A five-part miniseries co-production from HBO and Sky, dramatizes the story of the 1986 nuclear accident, one of the worst man-made catastrophes in history — and of the sacrifices made to save Europe from unimaginable disaster. [more inside]
Gentleman Jack: Oh is that what you call it? Season 1, Ep 3
Lister confides her hopes for a future with Ann Walker to her aunt, as Mrs. Priestley's inkling about the two women's relationship presents a threat. Meanwhile, John Booth is surprised at his own romantic success. [more inside]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Lethal Injection Season 6, Ep 10
This week's main story is about capital punishment, how there is absolutely no way to do it humanely, and the suffering perpetrated in its name. It's on YouTube. (19m) LWT added another site to its growing list, at Wikileaksorwhatever.com.
Barry: The Truth Has a Ring to It Season 2, Ep 6
Barry works with Gene to get into character; Sally embraces her truth; Fuches goes on a mission.
Game of Thrones: Game of Throne Episode 8.4 Show Only Season 8, Ep 4
The Battle of Winterfell is over and a new chapter for Westeros begins.
Gentleman Jack: I just went there to study anatomy Season 1, Ep 2
Lister begins a playful but dangerous courtship of Ann Walker; Lister's plan to excavate her coal mines brings her into the path of local magistrate Christopher Rawson and his brother Jeremiah; Lister's servant offers a solution to Eugénie's problem. [more inside]
Barry: ronny/lily Season 2, Ep 5
An encounter that Barry never could have predicted has surprising effects. [more inside]
Game of Thrones: The Long Night Show Only Season 8, Ep 3
The army of the undead arrives at Winterfell and the battle for life begins. [more inside]
Barry: What?! Season 2, Ep 4
Barry's patience is put to the test when a figure from Sally's past arrives in LA. Gene gets a pleasant surprise and encourages Barry to believe that change is possible.
Gentleman Jack: I was just passing Season 1, Ep 1
Rejected by her would-be companion Vere Hobart, Anne Lister returns to her shabby ancestral home. (HBO broadcast premiere) [more inside]
There are two topics covered at roughly equal length this week. The first is the long-awaited release of the Mueller Report, the contents of which reveal things that are entirely insane. On YouTube (15m). The other, almost as insane, is the story of Chiitan (TWITTER), an unofficial mascot for the Japanese city of Susaki. The behavior of Chiitan, a cartoon otter with a turtle on its head, was random, bizarre and violent, and so was asked to stop, by the city Susaki, associating with its official mascot, Shinjo-Kun (INSTAGRAM). But where some ways part, others join, so LWT sent one of their own mascots, Chii-john, a cute otter version of John Oliver, to Susaki to be Shinjo-Kun's new friend.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Opioids Again Season 6, Ep 8
The main subject was a return to the opioid crisis, and the role of big pharmaceutical companies in causing it. Specifically one Richard Sackler, who pushed Purdue Pharma into heavily marketing Oxycontin. LWT created the website Sackler Gallery, which features a number of actors reading transcripts of court appearances by Sackler. On YouTube (21m). Other topics: Brexit gets pushed back to Halloween, and Julian Assange was thrown out of Ecuadorian embassy and brought into police custody for extradition.
Game of Thrones: A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms Show Only Season 8, Ep 2
The battle at Winterfell approaches and a number of characters come to terms with what's coming. [more inside]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Mobile Homes Season 6, Ep 7
Main subject: Mobile homes, and the scarfing up of trailer park property by investment groups like the Carlyle Group, who can then raise rents with impunity and force owners with newly-immobile homes to pay it or else abandon their property. On YouTube. (16m) Other topics: Trump's nominations of Herman Cain and Steven Moore to the Federal Reserve Board (with clips from Oliver's hilarious series of Daily Show interviews with Cain) and the corruption of Baltimore mayor Catherine Pugh.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: The WWE Season 6, Ep 6
Main subject: The unwillingness of the WWE to support its wrestlers even as a lifetime of performances leaves them broken and often to an early death. On YouTube. (23m) Other topics included the submission of the Mueller Report and Barr's summary of it.
Game of Thrones: Winter is Here (full season) Books Included Season 8, Ep 0
Winter is here, and the show has outpaced GRRM's writing, but in case we want to talk about the books, here's a thread for speculating on this season.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Public Shaming Season 6, Ep 5
Main subject: Public shaming culture and how it can be taken too far. On YouTube. (27m) Also covered: the Christchurch shooting in New Zealand, and the (awesome) boy who eggs (literally) Austrialia's (awful) right-wing senator Fraser Anning, and Brexit.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Robocalls Season 6, Ep 4
Episode subject: Robocalls, their ubiquity, and how they're actually getting worse. Main story on YouTube (18m). Also covers Brasil far-right president Bolsonaro attacking Carnival for debauchery, by promoting a video obstensibly showing a man peeing on another. LWT simulated the video by showing a clip from the YouTube channel Squirting Mustard. That channel posted a thank-you response.
Barry: Past Equals Present x Future Over Yesterday Season 2, Ep 3
This week on HBO's flagship Sunday night show: As part of a class project, Gene tasks Barry with revisiting his past, and Sally reflects on her own history; Barry offers to provide training to Noho Hank's men; Fuches finds Barry in an unexpected location. [more inside]
Game of Thrones: Winterfell Show Only Season 8, Ep 1
People gather in the North to prepare for the coming battle. [more inside]
Barry: The Power of No Season 2, Ep 2
Facing pressure from Noho Hank, Barry struggles to pull off an important hit. After asking the class to mine their personal traumas for an original piece, Gene decides to confront his own past. A visit to her agents leaves Sally disappointed. Fuches tries to evade questions in Cleveland. [more inside]
Barry: Know Your Truth Season 1, Ep 8
In the season finale, Barry vows to give up his life of crime. Elsewhere, Pazar enlists a replacement to take care of Fuches. Detective Moss closes in on an arrest that they hope will crack the Madison homicide case. [more inside]
The story of Theranos, a multi-billion dollar tech company, its founder Elizabeth Holmes, the youngest self-made female billionaire, and the massive fraud that collapsed the company. Directed and written by Alex Gibney (Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room).
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Automation Season 6, Ep 3
The main story is on Automation, a fundamental aspect of industry that has been with us since the dawn of the industrial age, but which doesn't often get talked about in a nuanced manner. Are our jobs vulnerable to it or will it result in new jobs, and how should we react? The main story is available to watch on YouTube.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Psychics Season 6, Ep 2
You might not think much about psychics these days, but they're still all over the place, on daytime talk and "reality" shows especially. LWT takes a look at how they continue to bilk people. The main story is on YouTube.
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Brexit III Season 6, Ep 1
The episode of Last Week Tonight that aired three weeks ago was about the continuing situation of Brexit, a cliff the UK is bound and determined to drive off of because of leadership. The main story is on YouTube. [more inside]
At the height of his stardom Michael Jackson began long-running relationships with two boys, aged 7 and 10, and their families. Now in their 30s, they tell their story and how they came to terms with it years later.
True Detective: Now Am Found Season 3, Ep 8
Wayne struggles to hold on to his memories, and his grip on reality, as the truth behind the Purcell case is finally revealed. [Season finale] [more inside]
Barry: Chapter Seven: Loud, Fast And Keep Going Season 1, Ep 7
After a shootout at the airstrip, Barry must make a tough decision to avoid capture. Sally worries her performance in MacBeth will be compromised and ruin her chance at impressing a top talent agent. [more inside]
This stylish noir set in a world where everyone uses magic, Detective Lovecraft searches for the Necronomicon. [more inside]
True Detective: The Final Country Season 3, Ep 7
Following up on new leads, Wayne and Roland track down a man who left the police force in the midst of the Purcell investigation. Meanwhile, Amelia visits Lucy Purcell's best friend in hopes of gaining insights into the whereabouts of the mysterious one-eyed man. [more inside]
True Detective: Hunters in the Dark Season 3, Ep 6
Wayne and Roland revisit discrepancies in the Purcell case that were hidden or forgotten, and take another look at Tom Purcell and Lucy's cousin, Dan O' Brien; the glitter of Amelia's book release is tarnished by a voice from the past. [more inside]
True Detective: If You Have Ghosts Season 3, Ep 5
Wayne finds himself in a no-win situation as new clues emerge in the Purcell case. Roland wrestles with how to keep evidence secure as lawyers demand a new investigation. Amelia finds her relationship with Wayne imperiled by her writing aspirations and his jealousy. [Official synopsis] [more inside]
True Detective: The Hour and the Day Season 3, Ep 4
Hays and West see a possible connection between the local church and the Purcell crimes. As the detectives search for one suspect and round up another for interrogation, Woodard is targeted by a vigilante group.
True Detective: The Big Never Season 3, Ep 3
Hays recalls his early romance with Amelia, as well as cracks in their relationship that surfaced after they married; ten years after the Purcell crimes, new evidence emerges, giving Hays a second chance to vindicate himself and the investigation.
True Detective: Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye Season 3, Ep 2
Hays looks back at the aftermath of the 1980 Purcell case, including possible evidence left behind at an outdoor hangout for local kids; as attention focuses on two conspicuous suspects, the parents of the missing children receive a cryptic note.
True Detective: The Great War and Modern Memory Season 3, Ep 1
Retired detective Wayne Hays (Mahershala Ali), has a memory problem, and memories of a memory problem, all relating to the case of the missing Purcell children in West Finger, Arkansas, thirty-five year ago. [more inside]
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Draining the Swamp Season 5, Ep 29
This week (yes, a timely LWT post!):
- The Republicans lose the US House of Representatives, an act which Trump actually said was "close to a complete victory" for him. Also, businessman Danny Darkanian loses his sixth straight election in Nevada, annoying his wife greatly. And three states voted to expand Medicaid, Flordia voted to restore voting rights to felons, and Utah voted to legalize medical marihuana.
- Update in Stupid Watergate: Trump fires Jeff Sessions and replaces him, as acting head of the Justice Department, with Matthew Whitaker, a man known for many stupid things, foremost among them serving as an advisor to a company that had to pay out a $25M judgement for scamming inventors.
- And Now: Steve Bannon's Election Night Coverage Went Just Great
- Main Story: Donald Trump (again), and his campaign promise to "drain the swamp." A noble sentiment, but, predictably, absolutely the opposite of what he's doing. Here's the piece on YouTube.
- And Now: Monday Night Football's Graphics Are Officially Out Of Hand
- Finally, an epidemic of unnotified promotion of products by influencers on social media has been going on, including DJ Khaled hawking alcohol to millions of followers. To help illustrate, LWT reveals something they've been doing (not been getting paid for it, but doing it anyway) concerning Scientology....
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Family Separation Season 5, Ep 28
- 2018 Midterms, which has been exceptional in negativity. California Congressman Duncan Hunter accused opponent Ammar Campa-Najjar of being a terrorist trying to infiltrate Congress; Iowa Congressman Steve King, who has been notorious for associating with white nationalists and got pissy when confronted about it before cameras, and lost the support of a number of corporate PACs; and in Nebraska's 1st district a sign promoting Jeff Fortenberry was defaced with googly eyes and changed to read Jeff Fartenberry, causing his Chief-of-Staff to accuse a local professor, who was unlucky enough to have "liked" a Facebook photo of the sign within his random notice, of supporting vandalism.
- And Now: Out Annual Check-In With The Consequences Of Combining Local News Shows And Halloween
- Main story: Immigration, "The system that brought you me, but it's still good, and I promise that won't happen again." Specifically, the Trump administration's family separation policy. It's faded from the news, but its consequences have not ended yet. Content warning: horrifying consequences of the enforced separation of children from their parents. YouTube
- And Now: Halloween Part II: Just The Traffic And Weather
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: State Attorneys General Season 5, Ep 27
- Violence marred the prior week, and Fox News went out of their way to position the attacks as "false flag" operations, supposedly stages by Democrats to make Republicans look bad. Geraldo Riviera "outsmarts himself" in making such allegations.
- Saudi Arabia continues to try to explain the disappearance, likely murder, of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, while President Trump and right-wing figures try to downplay the killing of an American resident.
- Main story: the role of state Attorneys General on our nation, their role in investigating wrongdoing, and the increasing degree to which the offices have become politicized. YouTube
- Special productions: A WWE commercial that properly notes the fact that it takes place in Saudi Arabia, and the problems that causes; a concert for bagpipes, accordion, theremin and recorder (multiple, played by young children) to annoy people to stepping away from their TV sets and actually researching their states' candidates for Attorney General. A good place to do that, they note, is at Vote411.org.