EW Community TV Show Episode Guides and Recaps from EW's Community

Time Suck: We recommend 'Orphan Black,' 'Countdown,' and more

Time Suck is a weekly EW Community feature in which I and other contributors scour the deep recesses of our pop-culture knowledge to bring you the very best in current entertainment. These recommendations can be consumed in either one minute, one hour, one day, or one week; no matter how much or how little free time you have, we’ve got you covered.

So dig in, fellow fans. Whether you’ve got all the time in the world or no time at all, there’s something here for you. This week, we recommend the first two seasons of Orphan Black, a Beyoncé fan video, a geeked-out web comic, and a hilariously crass stop-motion web series.

*Warning: Time is a social construct, so not all of these offerings will fit exactly into their allotted categories. Just go with it.

One Minute: “Countdown (Snuggie Version)”

I’m not afraid of a little controversy, so here goes: “Countdown” is Beyoncé’s best music video. Full stop. It’s fun, inventive, and brilliantly simple. It also gives us not one, not two, but 10 Beyoncés at once, which is a deal if I ever heard one.

So what could top this creative beast? Turns out, just a bored (and highly creative) teenager with a plethora of Snuggies at his disposal. In 2012, YouTuber kkpalmer1000 (real name: Ton Do-Nguyen) recreated the entire “Countdown” video shot for shot, down to Bey’s every wink and sneer (not to mention her dance moves). And whereas Beyoncé had the best costume and makeup artists in the biz helping her out, Do-Nguyen had only his wits (and his impressive collection of Snuggies) to guide him. What he created is nothing short of a masterpiece.

And indeed, Queen Bey agrees. On her blog, The Hive, she posted the comparison video, then added, “I think he did this video better than I did!” Bow down.

Suggested viewing order: the original “Countdown” video, followed by the comparison (above), followed by Do-Nguyen solo, just so you can truly experience this sublime work of art to its full potential. (Then, if you really dig this genre, I suggest you take a look at SNL‘s Taran Killam recreating Robyn’s “Call Your Girlfriend” video. It’s equally magical.) Ariel Kay

One Hour: Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal web comic

Academia, marital strife, complex thought experiments involving time travel—none of these topics seems particularly suited to humor, least of all to the precise genre of humor that is the web comic. But every day since 2002, Zach Weiner, the creator of Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal comics, has been treating his fans to his funny and thought-provoking drawings. That’s right: Every day. For over 12 years now.

Along with other artists, like the guys behind xkcd and the Oatmeal, SMBC has helped to usher in a wave of web comics—that’s comics like Peanuts (but for adults), not comics like Superman (though the Internet has allowed for many of those types of comics to flourish as well). Weiner’s drawings don’t follow any set plot or group of characters, and their length varies from a single panel to a long diatribe over 10 or more frames. He also always includes a small, simple panel (called a “votey”) that illustrates his or his wife’s reaction to that day’s joke. If the comic is particularly long, these extra panels (which can be accessed by clicking the red button at the bottom of the comic) are occasionally just pictures of bleeding stumps where Weiner’s hands once were.

If you’re into smart humor (SMBC includes graphs and equations, as well as feminist takedowns of the Nice Guy), you can easily spend an hour or more poring over Weiner’s work. —Ariel Kay

One Day: The Most Popular Girls in School web series

Imagine a show like Mean Girls, except you’re always rooting for the mean girls. That’s the basis of The Most Popular Girls in School, a web series that’s been airing continually on YouTube since 2012. Along with being incredibly crude, hilarious, and brilliantly satirical, the show, which is shot in stop-motion, uses various Barbie Dolls and action figures to create its entire universe.

Talented voice actors give life and depth to the stories, and the characters all act as horribly as you’d expect them to. The typical high school archetypes are all there: the sociopathic cheerleader, the pregnant foreign exchange student, the openly gay quarterback, the new girl who has a bionic arm, and the nerds who host their own wacky morning-zoo show.

All 70 episodes are worth watching (they run about eight minutes each, though some are far shorter), but pick a handful to watch in one sitting and you’ll be drawn right into the bizarre world of Overland Park High. Robin Hardwick

One Week: Orphan Black, seasons one and two

You might have to work a little bit to make this happen, but I’d definitely recommend devoting a week to getting caught up on Orphan Black, seasons one and two. If you want to be hardcore, we’re talking three eps a day for a week. Or, you could take two weeks and do 10 episodes a week for each season.

Either way, if you’re not watching or haven’t caught up on Orphan Black, now is a perfect time. The first two seasons have skillfully built upon each other—and season three is pulling no punches, in the best way. Plus, lead actress Tatiana Maslany is a revelation. The longer I watch, the more I think Maslany may be the best actress of her generation, and one of the best ever.

So even if you just watch for the craft alone, you’ll be happy. When you add in the other cast (also amazing), the story (intricately fantastic), and the sheer WTF bonkersness of the premise, it’s incredible TV. Trust me on this; it’s totally worth a week of your life. Geek Girl Diva

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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