TV Tune-In: ‘black-ish,’ ‘AHS: Freak Show’ Worth Checking Out

Angela Bassett as Desiree Dupree in "American Horror Story: Freak Show." (Photo: Frank Ockenfels/FX)

ABC's "Scandal" and "Murder" along with Starz's "Survivor's Remorse" are all good TV bets and Viola Davis touches many with her emotional acceptance speech. Plus, see what's hot (Harper's Bazaar's "2014 Women Who Dare" nominees) and not (Ebola ignorance).

I don’t get a chance to catch everything that’s on TV. But the shows that I do watch weekly–“The Good Wife,” “Boardwalk Empire” and since its return, “The Walking Dead,”to name a few–have a pretty dedicated viewer in me. I watch them for different reasons but I can say that some of the things that they have in common are that they’re pretty solid , well-written (I just had a discussion with a pal about how good “The Walking Dead” and “Survivor’s Remorse” are) and engaging.  Though this doesn’t include every show I watch, here are five that I think you should make time for this week.

1. “black-ish.” We’ve learned more about the Johnsons since “black-ish” premiered three weeks ago. Andre “Dre” Johnson Sr. (Anthony Anderson), a successful ad exec who lives in an affluent, predominantly white community, really wants his four children to rep their black American heritage more. He wishes this so badly that’ll he’ll do just about anything to make this possible including setting up play dates for his 13-year-old son Andre Jr. (Dre, he’s 13, not 3!).  The show, which is TV’s No. 1 new comedy,  has its funny moments and has relatable subject matter though I wish some of the jokes were executed a bit better. It airs Wednesdays at 9:30 p.m. ET. 

ABC's "black-ish" stars Marcus Scribner as Andre Jr., Tracee Ellis Ross as Rainbow, Marsai Martin as Diane, Anthony Anderson as Dre, Miles Brown as Jack, Laurence Fishburne as Pops and Yara Shahidi as Zoey. (Photo: ABC/Craig Sjodin)

2.  “American Horror Story: Freak Show.” Last year I was all about “American Horror Story: Coven” and this season “American Horror Story: Freak Show” has me tuned in, too. “Freak Show” is set in 1952 in Jupiter, Fla. and follows the members of one of the last remaining freak shows from that time. Though we haven’t seen her yet, Angela Bassett stars as Desiree Dupree, a carnival member who I think has three boobs! Gabourey Sidibe and music icon Patti LaBelle will join also. Very, very curious how these sistas’ stories unfold. It airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET on FX. 

3. “Scandal.”I’m really feeling this show again. Last season kind of left me a bit underwhelmed since it focused heavily on Olivia Pope’s (Kerry Washington) screwed up personal life (her love triangle) and less on the cases she fixes. This all changed last week when Olivia Pope & Associates got back to doing what we love–fixing other people’s screwy lives. Season 4 airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.

4. “How to Get Away with Murder.” This show … “How to Get Away with Murder” is definitely one of my faves this season. It’s engaging, suspenseful and has strong characters, specifically its star Viola Davis, who plays Annalise Keating. Annalise is a defense attorney who also doubles as a no-nonsense law professor at Middleton University. In the first five minutes of the premiere, we see her law students covering up a murder and each episode since (three have aired so far) shows the events that led to their involvement. I like it and as the season's top new TV series it's clear I'm not alone. It airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.

5. “Survivor’s Remorse.” I’ve enjoyed the first two episodes and will tune in to watch the remainder of the season. This new series centers around NBA star Cam Calloway (Jessie T. Usher) who moves his family to Atlanta. Cam feels a bit guilty that he’s successful but his homeboys aren’t.  I think it’s well-written and the ensemble cast, which also includes Tichina Arnold, RonReaco Lee, Erica Ash, Teyonah Parris and Mike Epps, is very talented. It airs Saturdays at 9 p.m. ET on Starz. 

Watch the premiere of “Survivor’s Remorse”
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Viola Davis’ Humbling Testimony:
Here’s another reason to love Viola Davis. The “Murder” star recently shared a heart-wrenching acceptance speech at Variety’s 2014 Power of Women luncheon about growing up in “abject poverty” and “doing everything to get food.” "I jumped in huge garbage bends with maggots for food," she shared. "And I sacrificed a childhood for food and grew up in immense shame." Viola, who is involved with the Safeway Foundation, said 1 in 5 children in this country are raised in households that are food poor. We are a rich country and I think that when our bellies are full we assume that others are full, too. I appreciate Viola's humility and willingness to share her tough upbringing, especially in a time when so many celebs are busy flossing. Just don't take my word for it. Check out her speech below.

Watch Viola Davis’ Emotional Speech at Variety’s Power of Women
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The Hot List: Who/What’s Hot, Not
HOT: Harper’s Bazaar naming Uzo Aduba and Mo’Ne Davis to its “2014 Women Who Dare” list (I see you ladies!)
NOT: Waka Flocka arrested for carrying a loaded gun at Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta International Airport (You didn’t know that you couldn’t…oh, never mind!).

HOT: Blue Ivy Carter hanging out in the Louvre (Those photos are adorable!).
NOT: Amara Bangura, a Sierra Leonean student, being denied housing in a UK city over Ebola fears (…).

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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