What’s Worth Watching: ‘Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’, ‘The Crown’, ‘The Exorcist’, ‘Westworld’, ‘Saturday Night Live’ and more for Friday, Nov. 4 thru Sunday, Nov. 6
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (Friday, 9/8c, The CW): Thursday night before a packed house at New York’s 54 Below cabaret nightclub, Rachel Bloom delighted the audience with a sneak-peek clip of this week’s incredible production number: a daffy ode to “The Math of Love Triangles,” performed in the style of Marilyn Monroe’s “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend” (or Madonna’s “Material Girl,” depending on your generation). Surrounded by a chorus line of buff math professors, Rebecca (Bloom) delusionally chirps about her Josh-vs-Greg dilemma: “Whichever Tom or Dick I might pick, the center of the triangle is little old me.” But is it? No matter. Just watch.
The Crown (premieres Friday, Netflix): Claire Foy is sensational as the young Queen Elizabeth II in this deluxe 10-hour wallow in high-end royal soap opera from Peter Morgan (The Queen, The Audience). Inheriting the monarchy at 25, she must balance her duty to her country with the needs of her family, including a disgruntled spouse (Doctor Who‘s Matt Smith as Philip) who’s none too eager to live in her shadow. John Lithgow nearly steals the entire enterprise as a raging, aging Winston Churchill.
The Exorcist (Friday, 9/8c, Fox): I’m still reeling from the reveal that Angela Rance (Geena Davis), mother of the possessed and currently MIA Casey (Hannah Kasulka), is in reality the grown-up version of Regan MacNeil, the victimized teen from the legendary 1973 Exorcist movie, originally played by Linda Blair. The fallout is intense as the Rance family confronts the skeletons she has kept buried for so long, while her mother Chris (Sharon Gless assuming the Ellen Burstyn role) tries to reconcile with her estranged daughter. This thrilling episode also sheds new light on the demonic conspiracy and follows Father Marcus (Ben Daniels) on a perilous quest through Chicago’s underground to seek out the possessed Casey.
Westworld (Sunday, 9/8c, HBO): Thandie Newton dominates this engrossing episode of the fascinating sci-fi drama as the fiercely sexy animatronic madam Maeve, who takes bold steps to control her own destiny in the world beyond Westworld. Teddy (James Marsden) also shows his killer instincts in a caper with the Man in Black (Ed Harris), while behind the scenes, Elsie (Shannon Woodward) tries to figure out who’s been committing industrial espionage, using the “hosts” to transmit intel.
Inside Weekend TV: Showtime’s sports documentary One & Done (Friday, 9/8c) profiles No. 1 NBA Draft Pick Ben Simmons, focusing on the year he spent as a Louisiana State undergrad biding time for his NBA eligibility. … Continuing his farewell vote-for-Hillary tour through provocative talk shows, President Obama pays his first visit to HBO’s Real Time With Bill Maher (Friday, 10/9c) as the top-of-show interview guest. Comedian Martin Short joins the roundtable panel. … Alex Gibney’s timely and terrifying Showtime documentary Zero Days (Saturday, 9/8c) goes deep inside the world of cyber warfare. … The last original Saturday Night Live (11:30/10:30c, NBC) before the election features Benedict Cumberbatch in his first appearance as guest host, which should be fun, though most will be tuning in to see Alec Baldwin and Kate McKinnon go at it one more time in inspired impersonations of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Who’ll be laughing after Tuesday?