Author Archives: Roger Catlin

Thursday TV: Following the Money

On the latest original online series “One Dollar” (CBS All Access, streaming), a number of characters in a small rustbelt town are connected by a single dollar bill in a mystery meant to show class and cultural division in present day America. The ensemble cast includes Leslie Odom Jr., Philip Ettinger, Chris Denham and Gracie [...]

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Wednesday TV: Ancient Invisible Cities

Anybody can go visit the remains of ancient visible cities. A new public television series explores “Ancient Invisible Cities” (PBS, 9 p.m., check local listings) examining places like Istanbul, Cairo, and in tonight’s premiere, Athens, to find their hidden secrets. Professor Darius Arya uses 3D scanning to reveal ancient treasures. On the first of tonight’s [...]

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Tuesday TV: Chatting at the Barbershop

Jon Stewart pontificating at 11 p.m. may be the fondest dream of late night fans. It happens tonight as part of the premiere of “The Shop” (HBO, 11 p.m.), a new show from LeBron James that hopes to extend the kind of conversations that happen in neighborhood barber shops into a talk series. Also stopping [...]

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Monday TV: Deteriorating Iraq

In the documentary “ Nowhere to Hide,” young medic Nori Sharif tracks dramatic changes in central Iraq over five years, following the withdrawal of the U.S. in 2011. Where once he documented the injuries of the war wounded that he treated, he began documenting his own flight from the perilous region. The film by Zaradasht [...]

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Sunday: Peek Into Oak Park High School

Even at the best intentioned integrated high school, attitudes on race persist institutionally. That may be why the administration and researchers at suburban Chicago’s Oak Park and River Forest High School didn’t want to participate in “America to Me” (Starz, 10 p.m.) a 10-part documentary series from Steve James of “Hoop Dreams” fame. The students [...]

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Saturday: Carroll Baker, ‘Giant’ to ‘Star 80′

The wide-ranging career of Carroll Baker, still kicking at 87, is featured on Turner Classic Movies all day, with “Easy to Love” (6 a.m.), “The Miracle” (8 a.m.), “Giant” (10:30 a.m.), “Cheyenne Autumn” (2:15 p.m.), “The Carpetbaggers” (5:15 p.m.), “Baby Doll” (8 p.m.) pictured above, “Bridge to the Sun” (10 p.m.), “Sylvia” (midnight), “Something Wild” (2:15 a.m.) and “Star 80” (4:15 a.m.). Summer is winding down and so perhaps are the summer romances on [...]

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Friday TV: ‘Crime + Punishment’ and Cops

Despite its title from Dostoevsky, “Crime + Punishment” (Hulu, streaming) is actually a documentary about a dozen active New York City Police Officers who took a stand against a quota system that was supposed to have been abandoned, but was clearly not. More than that, Stephen Maing’s work, which includes a lot of officers proving [...]

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Joe Ely, Alejandro Escovedo Swap Songs

Song swapping may be the best way for a couple of esteemed singer/songwriters to tour. Rather than one opening for the other, sitting on stage together and taking turns playing songs allows the evening to unfold in unexpected ways. One performer is inspired by a line in the other’s song and brings out one with [...]

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Thursday TV: Jet Ski Comedy, Streaming

In “Rob Riggle’s Ski Master Academy” (Sony Crackle, streaming), the familiar comic actor heads a school for jet skiing. The cast includes Eliza Coupe, Tim Meadows, Pal Scheer, Cheech Marin, Rizwan Manji, Samm Levine and cameos from people like Dermot Mulroney, David Arquette and Jamie-Lynn Sigler — all playing versions of themselves. Sony Crackle is [...]

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Wednesday TV: ‘Mr. Mercedes’ Returns

It’s not a bad time on TV for stocky UK actors of a certain age. In addition to Scottish actor Brian Cox, the patriarch on HBO’s “Succession,” there is Ireland’s Brendan Gleeson, the detective who won’t quit on season two of “Mr. Mercedes” (AT&T Audience, streaming) even with his main suspect seemingly comatose in the [...]

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