Tipping Point: Our picks and pans
Sometimes When We Touch
I became a teen in the '70s, graduated high school and college. So the soft rock of the Carpenters, Air Supply and Kool & the Gang is the soundtrack, for good and bad, of an important segment of my life. This three-part documentary delves into the rise and fall of the genre and our love-hate relationship with it. Much of it is schmaltzy, but how many of us have sang along in the car to the Pina Colada song, "Escape" by Rupert Holmes? The last segment, the resurrection of soft rock, is a bit overstated. But, just the same, I went through my stacks of vinyl and pulled out Christopher Cross, Bread and Seals & Croft. And for days I've been humming "You make me feel like dancing."
— Tim Cotter
80 for Brady
The NFL season might be over, but big-screen gridiron enthusiasm lives on with this gentle, mild comedy about a quartet of older women who are diehard Patriots fans. The year is 2017, and they decide they should go to Houston when their team, led by their favorite G.O.A.T., Tom Brady, is competing in the Super Bowl. The screenwriting is meh, so the reason to see “80” is the cast. The four leading ladies are Jane Fonda, Rita Moreno, Lily Tomlin and Sally Field, and some of the actors that pop in for supporting turns are pretty great, too, particularly Billy Porter as the halftime choreographer and Harry Hamlin as an ex-gridiron star who is quite taken with Fonda’s character. As for Brady as an actor: He’s stiff in a few of his cameo turns, but he’s actually good in his near-finale scene with Lily Tomlin; they create a believable bond.
— Kristina Dorsey
9 p.m. Thursdays, Fox
Points to this sitcom for finding a novel site for a workplace comedy to take place: an animal control department. Points off, though, for using some real animals (per PETA) when they aren’t necessary (CGI, people!). But most points off for its being a snark fest. And if it’s a snark fest, you know it HAS to star Joel McHale. He plays a former cop named Frank, who was fired for trying to blow the whistle on police corruption. He’s a sardonic animal control officer who is stuck with an optimistic new partner — Shred (Michael Rowland), who used to be a snowboarder, bro. You know the drill: oil and water. Frank puts beef jerky in Shred’s back pocket so the ostriches they are investigating chase him up a tree. Frank convinces Shred to strip down to his skivvies to ward off the ostriches. It’s that kind of show. Well, at least now you know what you’re in for.
— Kristina Dorsey