By John Saeger
The ongoing series from The Philadelphia Globe peaks ahead at the next week of television, new movies, and topical classics.
The Crown (Netflix)
Season Four of The Crown begins with a whirlwind of affairs that include the rise of Margaret Thatcher and the introduction of Diana Spencer. As always, the costume drama is filled with phenomenal acting and a provocative look at the royal family. Olivia Colman, Tobias Menzies, and Helena Bonham Carter return in their final run as the Windsors this month. Joining the group before the series transitions to a different ensemble are Gillian Anderson and Emma Corrin. Look for Anderson to get an Emmy nomination, one of several for the show, for her sensational performance as the Iron Lady.
The Last Vermeer
The World War II period piece explores the story of a Dutch art broker who is on trial for collaborating with Nazis. Starring Guy Pearce as Han van Meegren, the film is based on the true story of a man who used his talents in unexpected ways. The Last Vermeer offers lasting questions on the value of art for both the artist and the audience.
The whacky cartoon from the 90’s is returning just in time for Thanksgiving. Yacko, Wakko, and Dot are coming to Hulu for the first season of the show’s revival. Joining the trio are Pinky and The Brain, the two lab mice whose nightly goal is no less than world domination. Narf!
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Reunion Special (HBO MAX)
Another treasured 90’s property is returning to HBOMAX in the form of a reunion special. Philly’s Will Smith and the gang team up to talk about the beloved sitcom. While it is not a surprise that surviving cast members would get together for something like this, it is shocking that both Aunt Vivs appear in the special. The long-unexplained swap of the lead actress teases a must-see moment, as will discussions about the late legend James Avery.
The Fresh Prince reunion aired on November 19 and is available on HBOMAX.
Villanova vs. Boston College, November 25, 7:00 PM (ESPN)
NCAA hoops returns on November 25. Villanova is among Philly’s Big 5 teams kicking off their season over the Thanksgiving holiday. Jay Wright and the Wildcats look to justify their #3 preseason ranking in a matchup with Boston College on ESPN.
Oldie, But Goodie
If you finished bingeing Netflix’s regal drama, but still want to get a feel for royalty, The Favourite is everything you could possibly want. Olivia Colman plays a predecessor of her character from The Crown, Queen Anne. Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz are two women who vie for the physical and emotional attention of the monarch. Their game of social chess has serious consequences on the 18th Century court and makes for a magnetic viewing experience.
The 2018 film was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar. Colman won for Best Actress for her leading performance as the queen in the black comedy powered by phenomenal acting. The Favourite is not safe for family viewing, but showcases an amazing battle of wits that Anglophiles will love. The Favourite is currently available for rental on Amazon Prime and YouTube.
About the Author: John Saeger is a music and film writer from Philadelphia. Since 2017 he has been writing his pop-culture blog Long After Dark, a site dedicated to the arts in the City of Brotherly Love and beyond. Email/ Twitter