by Tyler Glover
The third season of Hulu’s “Only Murders in the Building” just concluded this past Tuesday and showed us all why it has become as successful as it has and why it really was a no-brainer decision to pick it up for a fourth season.
The magical trio of Charles Haden-Savage (Steve Martin), Oliver Putnam (Martin Short) and Mabel Mora (Selena Gomez) are still just as funny as ever while trying to solve the latest murder in the building for their podcast. At this point, I would move but that’s beside the point. In this latest season, Oliver is directing a Broadway show with his leading man being a famous Hollywood actor named Ben Glenroy (Paul Rudd). Unfortunately, on opening night, Ben becomes the latest victim.
After a very disappointing killer reveal in the second season, this season offers so many suspects and many that would be a satisfying choice as the killer. It could be new breakout star, Loretta Durkin (Meryl Streep). Loretta went years without being able to chase her dreams and now that she is here, was Ben standing in the way? It could be Charles’ new girlfriend, Joy (Andrea Martin). It wouldn’t be the first time Charles dated a murderer, after all. It could be Ben’s girlfriend Kimber Min (Ashley Park). Did Ben break it off and then, she decides that she needs to off him? Could it be his adopted brother, Dickie (Jeremy Shamos)? Was Dickie tired of all of the years of being in the shadows while his brother reaped all the praise? Then there is the mother-son producing duo of Donna and Cliff DeMeo (Linda Emond and Wesley Taylor). Could Ben be destroying their production? The list could go on and on. That is what makes this season so exciting.
The writing this season is absolutely top-notch. The twists and turns continue in this season just as much as any season so far. The writing team knows what they are doing to keep us engaged and barely being able to wait to see what happens next. Their ability to mix the drama with the comedy is absolute perfection. They also throw in a very clever reference to a Steve Martin-Martin Short previous film, “Father of the Bride” in an episode that left me laughing for several minutes. This writing team deserves an Emmy for season three.
The only thing that could be disappointing for some viewers is that in the beginning of the season, Charles, Oliver and Mabel are in a bit of a squabble that leaves them to not spend every episode trying to solve the murder together. At times, they are going it alone and in those moments, we do miss the magic of the trio. I feel it was necessary to deliver some drama but some may be disappointed in the decision to break them up for a bit.
One addition for me that elevated this season to another level was the inclusion of three-time Academy Award-winning actress, Meryl Streep. Streep plays her part so brilliantly and deserves an Emmy in my opinion. When Streep is on screen, she really does steal the show which is really hard to do from the three stars that have made this show what it is. It does not change how brilliant they are though. Martin, Short and Gomez are pure gold in this show and I cannot wait to see them solve the next murder in the building next season. Seriously, people: you might need to move.
'Frasier' Returns, 'Moonlighting' Finally Comes to Streaming and Halloween Options Lead October Streaming Recs
by Julian Spivey
Our Flag Means Death (Season 2) – Max – Thursday, Oct. 5
“Our Flag Means Death” was a bit of an underseen gem in 2022 when it premiered on Max (then still HBO Max) that turned the swashbuckling life of pirates into a romantic comedy with a wealthy gentleman turned pirate striking up a friendship with the feared Blackbeard himself. Stede Bonnett, the gentleman pirate played brilliantly by Rhys Darby who is taking full advantage of finally having a lead role, and Blackbeard, hilariously played by Taiki Waititi, wind up falling in love but things go array at the end of the first season. This is where I assume season two, premiering on Max on Thursday, October 5, will pick back up. I know “Our Flag Means Death” has developed a small and loyal fan base, particularly among LGBTQ+ viewers, but as previously mentioned it doesn’t seem to have a large viewership – that probably needs to tick up a bit for the show to receive a third season, which series creator David Jenkins plans on being the show’s swan song.
Moonlighting (Complete Series) – Hulu – Tuesday, Oct. 10
If you’ve ever seen questions as to which older television series people most want to see added to streaming one of the top answers has always been “Moonlighting,” the ABC comedy-drama starring Cybill Shepherd and Bruce Willis that aired from 1985-1989. The series about private detectives is finally making its way to streaming this month with the addition of the entire series to Hulu on Tuesday, Oct. 10. I’ll be a little surprised if “Moonlighting” catches on with younger generations having a chance to see it for the first time (although it’s on my to-watch list), but it’ll definitely be a treat for old fans longing to re-watch it over the years.
Frasier (Reboot) – Paramount+ - Thursday, Oct. 12
I’m going to call the resumption of “Frasier,” nearly 20 years after the Emmy-winning NBC series ended, on Paramount+ a reboot of the series, but seeing how the only returning character is going to be Kelsey Grammer’s titular character it feels like it’s mostly going to be a new series that shares a name and character. I have my doubts about bringing back Frasier Crane, mostly because the character, Grammer’s performance and the shows the character appeared on “Cheers” and “Frasier” are all television classics and I’d hate to see any of it besmirched if this doesn’t turn out well, but I’ll certainly be giving “Frasier” the chance to assuage my fears.
The Fall of the House of Usher – Netflix – Thursday, Oct. 12
Mike Flanagan has had much success with horror limited series on Netflix before with 2018’s “The Haunting of Hill House” and 2021’s “Midnight Mass.” His latest for the streamer sees him taking on the works of poet/author Edgar Allan Poe with “The Fall of the House of Usher,” with a nice cast including Carla Gugino, Bruce Greenwood and Mary McDonnell. I’ll be the first to admit that I probably won’t be watching this as Flanagan’s works are a bit too gory for my personal taste, but I know this is going to be right up the alley for many in the weeks leading up to Halloween.
Lessons in Chemistry – AppleTV+ - Friday, Oct. 13
There has been a handful of interesting new AppleTV+ drama series this year and once they have premiered you kind of never heard of them again – maybe it’s because so few people still have or use AppleTV+? But then again shows like “Ted Lasso” and “Severance” blew up without this being an issue. Hopefully “Lessons in Chemistry,” based on the bestselling novel by Bonnie Gramus, won’t be the latest in that line. It probably helps that its lead is Oscar-winner Brie Larson (though she’s a name we haven’t heard a whole lot from lately). Larson stars as Elizabeth Zott, whose dream of being a chemist is put on hold in the early ‘60s when she finds herself pregnant, alone and out of a job before getting her own TV cooking show where she’s able to educate housewives on scientific topics. The first two episodes drop on Friday, Oct. 13 with additional episodes coming every Friday following.
Slotherhouse – Hulu – Sunday, Oct. 15
“Slotherhouse” looks ridiculous. But it feels like the kind of movie that knows it’s ridiculous and plays that up for fun and camp in the best of ways. I guess to truly find out if that’s the case I’ll have to tune in when it drops on Hulu on Sunday, October 15. “Slotherhouse” is the story of a sorority girl who plucks a sloth out of the jungle to help her gain popularity in college and well, the sloth, one of the world’s most notoriously slow creatures, goes on a vengeful killing spree. Let’s hope it’s campy fun.
Pete Holmes: I Am Not for Everyone – Netflix – Tuesday, Oct. 24
Pete Holmes is one of the funniest stand-up comedians in the game today and he has been for quite some time. He even had a critically acclaimed HBO comedy series “Crashing” for a few seasons. But he’s also surprisingly, to me at least, not someone who’s become a household name – but I guess as the title of his new stand-up special claims ‘I Am Not for Everyone.’ Surprisingly, Holmes hasn’t had a new stand-up special since 2018’s “Dirty Clean,” so seeing him perform some new material for the first time in half a decade will be a real treat. The new special premieres on Netflix on Tuesday, October 24.