Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, our TV critic Margaret Lyons offers hyper-specific viewing recommendations in our Watching newsletter. Read her latest picks below, and sign up for the Watching newsletter here.
This weekend I have … an hour, and I like spoofs
When to watch: Friday at 10 p.m. on AMC, or at 11 p.m. on IFC.
This special installment of “Sherman’s Showcase,” the fast and very funny mockumentary series, is the show’s “Black History Month Spectacular,” so it’s an extra good episode. Bashir Salahuddin, one of the show’s creators, stars as Sherman McDaniels, host of a (fictional) music and variety show, and every episode includes sketches, songs, spoofs and some of the best one-liners you will hear on television. The “Peanuts” parody on this special is particularly great, and it makes me even more excited for the series to return in earnest for its recently announced second season.
… a few hours, and I’m hungry (for knowledge)
‘Taste the Nation With Padma Lakshmi’
When to watch: Now, on Hulu.
The “Top Chef” host Padma Lakshmi takes things in a more serious and thoughtful direction on this new cooking and identity series, which includes episodes about Native American food sovereignty and about border-town cooking as a lens for examining attitudes about immigration. For Juneteenth, Hulu is making the fourth episode free for nonsubscribers. It’s about the Gullah Geechee community in South Carolina, people whose ancestors were enslaved West Africans and whose food, language and customs are under attack. “The culture happens between the healing and the hurt,” the food writer and historian Michael W. Twitty says to Lakshmi. “That’s where our culture has been made.”
… nine hours, and I crave intensity
When to watch: Now, free on the HBO website or On Demand.
Also free to watch this weekend: Damon Lindelof’s sensational reimagining of the “Watchmen” mythology, which aired last fall. Regina King stars as a Tulsa police officer and the superhero Sister Night, and the show uses its alternate American history — Robert Redford has been president since 1993, for example — to re-examine the actual American history of anti-Black racism. There’s a lot happening on every episode of “Watchmen,” and a lot of discourse to go alongside it, but the episodes are free only through Sunday night. Binge hard.