We Like to Watch: Nov. 1st-7th, 2010

Steve Martin and his banjo descend upon Texas, the ladies of SNL get the spotlight, and the Simpsons run late for Halloween (we forgive them).

There are many TV options to choose from. Too much for any one person to completely monitor, but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to do our best to sift through all the listings and figure out what you should be watching every week…with all the highlights, lowlights and guilty pleasures you can stand.

Monday, Nov. 1st

10:30 p.m. The Soup Presents Housemates, Hot Tubs and Health Code Violations (E!)

We’ll take all the Soup-y goodness we can stomach, even if the “Presents” episodes tend to rehash clips we’ve seen a time or 10 already. Doesn’t matter. Joel McHale and his crew always do an amazing job skewering the vapidity of Hollywood and television in general. Plus, you never know what special guests will pop up.

Saturday, Nov. 6th (a.k.a. Friday night)

12:35 a.m. Late Night with Jimmy Fallon (NBC)

Both Elvis Costello and Lewis Black are on other late-night shows this week, but we’ll wait until they get stop by Fallon for a couple reasons. First off, Jimmy’s not a stuffy geezer trying desperately to be hip. Second, his excitement is infectious. Most importantly, why watch another show with only one guest you care about when you can spend an hour of your time watching great comedy and great music without having to channel surf?

Also on Saturday

9:00 p.m. Austin City Limits (PBS)

Oh Steve Martin, you always have an ace (if not a giant arrow) up your sleeve. First you wow us with your comedy, then you switch gears and go full-on bluegrass. We weren’t sure what to think at first, but we dig it. Catch banjo wizard Martin and his band the Steep Canyon Rangers on this week’s live set from Austin, Texas. The episode also features a performance by singer Sarah Jarosz.

Sunday, Nov. 7th

8:00 p.m. The Simpsons (Fox)

No matter what you might think of Springfield’s first family these days, there’s probably a solid chance you still enjoy the annual Halloween-themed “Treehouse of Horror” episodes. Though obviously premiering after Halloween thanks to the World Series (actually, when was the last time they aired one of these before Oct. 31st?), the segments titled “War and Pieces,” “Tweenlight” and “Master and Cadaver” all sound promising, especially the middle one with Lisa falling for a vampire voiced by Daniel Radcliffe.

Also on Sunday

10:00 p.m. The Walking Dead (AMC)

Most comic geeks were surprised when they heard that Robert Kirkman’s zombie comic was getting the TV treatment. How could the undead work on TV? Well, producer, director and showrunner Frank Darabont kicked the naysayers in the ass with an excellent pilot episode which premiered on Halloween. We can’t wait to see what he does this week, which finds protagonist Rick stuck in a tank and making new friends. And hopefully blowing up zombies.


Monday, Nov. 1st

9:00 p.m. The Women of SNL (NBC)

Honestly, we’d recommend The Women of SNL flat-out and not just as a Silver Lining. What’s hotter than a woman who can also make you laugh? (One who’s also a swimwear model, we suppose.) Past and present Not-Ready-for-Primetime Players like Tina Fey, Kristen Wiig, Cheri Oteri, Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Molly Shannon will all be showing up and, at least in Oteri’s case, showing off their new looks. When did she get so tan?


Tuesday, Nov. 2nd

9:00 p.m. Running Russell Simmons (Oxygen)

Here’s a bit of advice for celebrities. If you’re a hip-hop icon and media mogul, please, for the love of God, don’t get a reality show on the Oxygen Network. That almost completely negates everything cool you’ve ever done, which is saying a lot in Russell Simmons’ case (dude co-founded Def Jam records, after all). For some reason Simmons thought it would be a good idea to showcase his assistants in this new show. Hey, maybe it’s better not to accept a check and keep a little of that good, old-fashioned self respect, right? Or better yet, discover some new artists.