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Broadcasting_events
Tune in Tonight for Feb. 14
 
 02.13.20

Viewers in search of the preposterous and adventurous should not miss “Utopia Falls,” now streaming its entire 10-episode season on Hulu. It’s set in a far-off future where humanity has rebuilt itself under a force-field bubble, centuries after the “Great Flash” destroyed recorded history.

Because humankind’s downfall was brought about by rapacious competition, the accent here is on a nurturing, cooperative society. This is all explained and extolled in a heavy-handed, propagandistic manner that portrays the city-state of New Babyl as the most passive-aggressive hippie commune ever. Be good for goodness’s sake!

Every year, the leading council of New Babyl chooses a group of 16-year-olds to appear in the Exemplar Games, which seem a lot more like “American Idol” than “The Hunger Games.” Viewers can feel assured that even in this brave new world, TV teenagers still look like they’re pushing 30!

As the Exemplar’s chosen few gather, the strident Aliyah (Robyn Alomar) makes a fateful discovery, stumbling upon a hidden library containing historic technology and all of the stored wisdom of the past. There, she is exposed to the ancient secrets of something called “hip-hop.”

Spoiler alert: The disembodied voice of the library docent is provided by Snoop Dogg. How do you return to the cheerful Up With People vibe of New Babyl once you’ve heard Notorious B.I.G.?

  • A 1995 Nick Hornby novel named for a 1979 song by Elvis Costello, “High Fidelity” was already well into nostalgia territory when it was adapted for the big screen in a 2000 movie starring John Cusack.

A tale of a man approaching middle age surveying the wreckage of his years and love life through a series of top 10 lists and classic rock song references, it spoke to a certain male boomer sensibility. Trapped in a world where men aren’t supposed to express their passions, its main character clung to the music that inspired and excited him, even as it announced his alienation from so much else to do with growing up.

Fast forward to 2020, and we have a TV series adaptation (streaming on Hulu) with a 30-something woman Rob (Zoe Kravitz) as the main character, a record-store owner unlucky in love, who frequently turns to the camera to share her lists and lamentations, accompanied by a soundtrack still very informed by the original book and movie.

It seems almost absurdly obvious to call this “talky,” since it consists mainly of Rob’s observations and the passionate opinions of her record store employees.

After so many years of tentative uptalk, it’s nice to hear people discuss their opinions in an emphatic manner. But listening to Lenny Kravitz’ daughter extol the genius of “Rumours” by Fleetwood Mac may be too much of a time warp for many.

  • Apple TV+ begins streaming the miniseries “Visible: Out on Television,” a look at gay characters and conversations on the small screen.
  • Given it’s the last logical day to repeat “A Valentine’s Match” (7 p.m., Hallmark, TV-G), you have to wonder what holiday Hallmark will celebrate next. Do they have any St. Patrick’s Day arrows in their quiver? How about an “Ash Wednesday Romance” leading to “My Lenten Lover”? Unfortunately, they’ve gone straight to “Christmas Under Wraps” (9 p.m.).

Other highlights

  • A violent three-peat on “Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector” (7 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
  • “WWE Friday Night SmackDown” (7 p.m., Fox, TV-PG).
  • The gang attends a school party in the 1975 special “Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown” (7 p.m., ABC, TV-G).
  • “20/20” (8 p.m., ABC) revisits the Jodi Arias murder case.
  • An undercover assignment unravels on “Blue Bloods” (9 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
  • The thriller series “Strike Back” (9 p.m., Cinemax, TV-MA) enters its eighth season.

Cult choice

Arguably all of Hollywood history could be divided into the periods before and after the 1967 gangster movie “Bonnie and Clyde” (5 p.m., TCM, TV-14).

Series notes

It takes a thief to test the mettle of the military on “MacGyver” (7 p.m., CBS, TV-14) .

A convenience store shooting on “Hawaii Five-0” (8 p.m., CBS, TV-14) ... “Dateline” (8 p.m., NBC) ... “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” (CW, r, TV-14) features Adam Rippon (8 p.m.) and Tinashe (8:30 p.m.).

Late night

Jimmy Fallon welcomes Steve Buscemi, Zoey Deutch and Justin Bieber featuring Quavo on “The Tonight Show” (10:35 p.m., NBC) ... Andy Samberg and Ilan Rubin visit “Late Night With Seth Meyers” (11:35 p.m., NBC, r) ... Bradley Whitford, Brett Gelman and Camila Cabello appear on “The Late Late Show With James Corden” (11:35 p.m., CBS, r).


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briefly
Waco-area news briefs: Feb. 14, 2020
 02.13.20

The Allbritton Art Institute, a nonprofit affiliate of Baylor University, will present a free conversation with Njideka Akunyili Crosby and art critic Jason Kaufman from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at McClinton Auditorium, Room 240 in the Paul L. Foster business building, 1621 3rd St.

People’s Law School

Baylor University’s People’s Law School will be held from 8:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Sheila and Walter Umphrey Law Center, 1114 S. University Parks Drive.

The People’s Law School is an opportunity for the general public to learn basic fundamentals of the law in a fun and informative way. Attendance is free.

Twenty classes will be offered on a variety of legal issues and are intended to make the law “user friendly.” All classes are taught by law professors, local attorneys and experts.

For a complete list of the classes being offered, visit baylor.edu/law/PLS.

For more information, call 710-6681.

CRRC dinner

The Community Race Relations Coalition will host Dinner and a Movie, showing the film “The Hate U Give,” from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at First Presbyterian Church, 110 Austin Ave.

Dinner is provided by the coalition board, with donations accepted. This event is free and open to all. RSVP to 717-7903 or Jo@welterfamily.org.

Baylor Theatre

Baylor Theatre will perform “Yerma” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Feb. 22, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday in the Hooper-Schafer Fine Arts Center at Baylor University.

Tickets are $15. For more information, call 710-1865.