John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight returns this week, which will delight many of the fans that discovered the show during its first season. It’s phenomenal just how much of a cultural juggernaut it became in just a matter of weeks. Proof positive that audiences do (can?) pay attention when a show comes out as strong as that show did.
Also, The Walking Dead does return for the second half of its fifth season this week.
The ‘What To Watch’ list is a primer for shows that are debuting or have an episode of note. If you want more complete TV listing site, be sure to check out the Pogdesign Calendar. Please note that all dates cited below are in accordance with their local broadcast times.
Special thanks goes to Jen Knight for assisting in compiling the list.
New shows debuting this week:
The House of Hancock
Airs: 8 February (Nine Network – Australia)
This TV movie (though it appears to be two one our episodes aired back-to-back) examines the real life Lang Hancock/Gina Rinehart/Rose Porteous relationships and the marriage between Lang & Rose that amused the Australian public. Whether this TV movie rises above mere amusement value is yet to be seen.
Better Call Saul
Airs: 8 February 2015 (AMC – US)
The ‘Breaking Bad’ prequel series spin-off starring shady lawyer Saul Goodman launches this weekend. Advance word is that this is not an overt comedy, despite how the series had been billed when first announced. Fans of Breaking Bad will no doubt be highly enthused to see the return of the show, but the big question is whether they’ll be just as interested in watching a show with a different pace and tone to the original series.
Note: Better Call Saul will air in Australia fast-tracked from the US on Monday night from 6pm. The second episode follows the next night, as it does in the US.
Airs: 9 February 2015 (Nine Network – Australia)
This is the first episode of an 8-part series that depicts the ten-month campaign in Turkey during World War 1 that led to the death of so many Australian soldiers and played such a large part of forming the nations cultural identity.
Airs: 9 February 2015 (BBC4 – UK)
Inspired by the Julian Assange stint in the Equadorian Embassy, this UK comedy stars Ben Miller as an egotistical whistleblower seeking refuge in a South American embassy.
Airs: 12 February 2015 (NBC – US)
When an annoying child is slapped by an adult at a barbecue, so sets off a series of dramatic repercussions that are felt by all the adults in attendance. This is the US remake of the Australian TV series and stars Uma Thurman, Thandie Newton, Peter Saarsgard, Zachary Quinto, Brian Cox, and Melissa George (reprising her role from the Australian series).