Worth Watching: ‘Alien’s New Doctor, ‘Moxie’ and Mormon Murders on Netflix, Jason’s Return on ‘SEAL Team’
A selective critical checklist of notable Wednesday TV:
Resident Alien (10/9c, Syfy): Bit by bit, the crash-landed alien in human disguise is becoming more human in this inspired sci-fi/comedy hybrid. Alan Tudyk is playing all the beats to perfection, whether exulting as a “sexy beast” after the return of his alias Dr. Harry’s wife or feeling petulantly jealous when the town welcomes a handsome new town physician, matinee idol-worthy Dr. Ethan Stone. Kudos to the casting of Harry’s rival, who’s played by Michael Cassidy, recently seen on TV as another alien hiding in plain sight as human on TBS’s much-missed People on Earth. Dr. Stone is nothing but nice to Harry, who resents his “stupid hair” and a smile that “makes we want to love him and strangle him.” But when Harry learns that Ethan isn’t a fan of his beloved Law & Order? That crosses the line.
Moxie (streaming on Netflix): Last seen trying to keep the awkward Golden Globes ceremony afloat with plucky humor, Amy Poehler goes behind the camera to direct and co-star in this dramedy about 16-year-old Vivian (Hadley Robinson), who’s inspired by her mom’s (Poehler) rebellious past to start an underground zine called Moxie. Her goal: to expose hypocritical bias and bad behaviors in her high school, sparking a social movement.
Also new to Netflix: Murder Among the Mormons, a three-part true-crime account of 1985 pipe bombings in Salt Lake City that shook the local LDS Church community to its core. Two were killed and one severely injured in the attacks, and the intrigue grew when early Mormon letters and diaries were found in the surviving victim’s vehicle, including a document that could challenge Mormon beliefs.
SEAL Team (9/8c, CBS): It has been a tumultuous season for these military heroes, who you’d think would be celebrating now that they’ve rescued Ray (Neil Brown Jr.) and he’s back on the Bravo team. But once Jason (David Boreanaz) returns to Bravo, there’s tension in the squad now that Ray outranks him. Still, they’ll need to pull together on a timely mission to Syria to recover some military drones.
Inside Wednesday TV: Is anyone surprised that Beverly’s (Wendi McLendon-Covey) reputation as a difficult parent precedes her on ABC’s The Goldbergs (8/7c)? Which makes it harder than she imagined to win over her new co-workers as William Penn’s new Quaker Warden… Jonathan Knight has matured from boy-band stardom as one of the New Kids on the Block to a new persona as HGTV’s Farmhouse Fixer (9/8c). In a six-episode series, he shows his skill at renovating ancient New England farmhouses, starting with a project dating back to 1700s New Hampshire… Patton Oswalt guests on ABC’s The Conners (9/8c) when Jackie (Laurie Metcalf) makes an unpleasant discovery while visiting Roseanne’s grave, and back at home, a stressed-out Mark (Ames McNamara) has convinced himself that he has COVID-19… CBS’s S.W.A.T. (10/9c) welcomes a new team member into the field: guest star Norma Kuhling (Chicago Med) as tactical medic Nora Fowler… The ABC News series The Con (10/9c) is back with five new episodes, starting with “The Fyre Festival Con,” which features the first TV interview with Billy McFarland since he began currently serving time for defrauding those who bought into his ill-fated 2017 festival that went bust in the Bahamas.