The Rundown is a weekly column that highlights some of the biggest, weirdest, and most notable events of the week in entertainment. The number of items could vary, as could the subject matter. It will not always make a ton of sense. Some items might not even be about entertainment, to be honest, or from this week. The important thing is that it’s Friday, and we are here to have some fun.
ITEM NUMBER ONE — The pizza discourse is raging
My general position on food is that you should eat things you like to eat, within reason. I do not think you should eat, like, poison, or another human being, but as long as you are not actively harming yourself or others, God bless.
I felt this way a few years ago when there was a discourse raging about whether you should put ketchup on a hot dog (it’s your hot dog, do what you want, more spicy mustard for me, etc.), and I feel this way now on the subject of pineapple as a pizza topping. Is it my favorite thing in the world? Hmm. No. I’m good with a plain cheese slice, or maybe some sausage and green peppers if I’m feeling fancy. A barbecue chicken pizza is about as far as I’ll take it. But again, as long as you’re not showing up at my house for dinner with a single pineapple-covered pizza you expect us to share… I don’t know. Enjoy, buddy. Don’t let me rain on your pizza parade.
You know who does not share my “live and let live” policy when it comes to pineapple on pizza, though? All of television this week. Or at least two parts of television. Which is, I suppose, substantially less than “all” but still higher than zero, which is much closer to the average, I assume.
The first example happened on The Walking Dead. Context will help but is not entirely necessary, so we can hit some bullet points quick:
- Ezekiel was going in for surgery and about to slip under the anesthesia
- Carol said they could have any food he wanted when he came out
- She listed options like pizza and ice cream
Ezekiel said… this.
Which seems like a pretty passionate food take for a person who is about to have surgery in a world populated by murderous zombies, but hey, who am I to judge? I once woke up from surgery and — still deeply woozy from the sleepy drugs — told my father that I wanted him to murder one of the nurses. It’s fine. I’m fine now. He didn’t do it. I just mention this to point out that things can get weird when you have a lot of strange chemicals bouncing around your bloodstream. Ezekiel might even like pineapple on pizza. The show should update us on this at some point. It’s only fair.
But this brings us to the second example, which is devoid of any medication-related ambiguity. Denzel Washington swung by Desus & Mero for their season premiere. They had a terrific little chat, one that opened with about four solid minutes on public transportation in New York City. If you haven’t already, please take half an hour at some point this week and watch the extended version. It’s a really good time.
And, when you do watch it, when you start approaching the five-minute mark, you will see the discussion move toward pizza, and cost of various slices through time, and then you will see Denzel Washington — Hollywood legend and very intense dude — say “pineapple on pizza” two times in a row with enough disdain in his voice and on his face to blow the top off of a mountain.
A visual will help. This is the face Denzel makes the second time he says the phrase “pineapple on pizza.”
Two things are true here. The first is that if Denzel Washington ever made this face while discussing something I loved, I would probably dissolve on the spot and blow off into the breeze. The second is that I saved this image on my computer as “denzel pineapple,” which is maybe the greatest fake name I’ve ever encountered. I consider these things to be equally important. Denzel Pineapple. Let’s all file this one away for the next time we need to make a dinner reservation or start a new life on a tropical island to escape a sticky situation on the mainland. I mean, dibs, obviously, but you can use it too as long as you don’t abuse it.
Anyway, here’s why I bring all of this up. If any of you have a friend whose three favorite things in the entire world are The Walking Dead, Denzel Washington, and pizza with pineapple on it, and you’ve noticed they’ve been kind of in the dumps this week… well, here’s your answer. Maybe give them a call at some point. They’re going through a lot.
ITEM NUMBER TWO — Holey Moley is America’s finest television program
The fact of the matter is that Holey Moley is America’s finest television program. I say this a lot. People think I’m joking. I must once again stress that I am not. It is a perfect little summer series, just one solid hour every week of well-meaning bozos getting clobbered by impossible obstacles under the guise of a miniature golf competition. I love it very much. We should put episodes of it into a capsule and shoot the capsule into the cosmos on the off chance that an alien civilization will discover it. It will tell them more about the human race than an entire set of leather-bound encyclopedias.
But I digress. I mention this all now because Holey Moley is preparing to return in May for a fourth season. And when it does return in May for that fourth season, something incredible is going to happen.
The most extreme mini-golf competition series is coming back for another season and this time the Muppets are bringing the un-fore-gettable hijinks! Mark your for(e) May 3rd pic.twitter.com/Sg5EsAtES8
— Holey Moley (@holeymoleyabc) March 15, 2022
ON HOLEY MOLEY
I MUST KNOW EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS AT ONCE
Season 4 of “Holey Moley,” the mini-golf competition show executive produced by Steph Curry, will air at 8 p.m. ET. The series, which is produced by Unanimous Media and Eureka Productions, will feature characters from “The Muppets” as guest commentators this season, alongside established commentator duo Rob Riggle and Joe Tessitore.
I… I do not think you understand how exciting this is for me. Like, take how exciting you think it is for me, then triple that. I love the damn Muppets. I once wrote over 2000 words about The Great Muppet Caper over 30 years after its release. This is… perfect. It’s perfect. It’s two puzzle pieces clicking together. The sensibilities are almost exactly the same. They’re both charming, they both embrace chaos, and they both bring me more than a reasonable amount of joy. It’s good. That’s my point.
As far as what I’d like to see here, well, let’s hit the bullet points again:
- Statler and Waldorf up in a balcony mocking contestants as they flail through the air
- Miss Piggy flirting with Joe Tessitore in an attempt to make Rob Riggle jealous
- An entire episode hosted by Gonzo and Rizzo
I am serious about all of these but especially the last one. Picture Gonzo and Rizzo doing this.
I’m so happy I could cry. It’s always nice when television networks make programming decisions based on my own very specific and deranged set of interests. I hope they give the Wu-Tang Clan microphones next season.
ITEM NUMBER THREE — My shows… my beautiful shows
It brings me great pleasure to report that The Flight Attendant is returning for a second season. The Flight Attendant was so good in its first go-round. It had everything you could possibly want: Kaley Cuoco as a boozy stewardess who finds herself wrapped up in international intrigue, someone kicking a shoe at someone, Rosie Perez sometimes, etc. A winning formula. That’s the teaser for the new season up there. We are pretty excited about it, both because it’s nice when good shows come back and because, I mean, look at the description of the new season.
Cassie Bowden (Kaley Cuoco) is living her best sober life in Los Angeles while moonlighting as a CIA asset in her spare time. But when an overseas assignment leads her to inadvertently witness a murder, she becomes entangled in another international intrigue.
More descriptions of more shows should feature sentences like “she becomes entangled in another international intrigue.” All shows, really, now that I think about it. Cobra Kai could use a little spicing up.
Hey, speaking of good shows that are coming back soon…
Barry! Barry is coming back soon!
This is great news. Barry is such a good show. You probably have time to get a rewatch in before this starts, too, which is good, because you should take every chance you can get to appreciate NoHo Hank, easily a top ten character on television for me. I’ve missed him so much. I kind of cheered a little, out loud, when he showed up in this teaser. Look at my king thriving.
The good shows are coming back. So many of them. We’re going to need a spreadsheet or something to keep track of them. One of you is going to have to do it, though. I am not a nerd.
ITEM NUMBER FOUR — Why would anyone want to go to space?
You’ve seen this, I’m sure, but I’m going to go ahead and blockquote it anyway just to give myself a place to launch from.
Pete Davidson, the ”Saturday Night Live” comedian, is joining the crew of Jeff Bezos’ next Blue Origin flight, set for March 23. This marks the fourth human flight launched by the private spaceflight company and its 20th overall.
Announced on Monday, Davidson’s fellow crew members will be Party America CEO Marty Allen; philanthropist and real estate mogul Marc Hagle and his wife, Sharon Hagle; University of North Carolina professor Jim Kitchen; and Dr. George Nield, president of Commercial Space Technologies.
Here’s what I want to know: Why? Why does anyone want to go to space? Astronauts, I get, kind of, for the exploration and science of it all. I can wrap my head around that. But why are these regular goofs going to space? It seems weird and bad to me. But maybe I’ve seen too many movies and shows where things go screwy in space. I suppose that’s a possibility. But still.
It’s kind of like my stance on cruises. I cannot understand why anyone would ever want to go on a cruise. I’ve made this point a million times but I’ll keep making it until people listen: A beachfront all-inclusive resort has everything a cruise has and has something approaching a zero percent chance of sinking. And you can drive away from it if you don’t like it. If you are on a boat, man, you are extremely on that boat, you know?
Going to space is even worse. It’s like a cruise where everything is cramped and there are no umbrella drinks. I don’t get it. I’ll never get it. I’ll just stay here on dry land. But good for them, I guess.
ITEM NUMBER FIVE — Kenan is so good at this
If you are reading this, there’s a pretty good chance Kenan Thompson has been a funny person on television for all or most of your life. That’s nuts to think about. The guy rolled from Nickelodeon straight into SNL and has been killing it the whole time. Look at him in this sketch. It would be a solid sketch without him, just based on the premise. But watch Kenan. Watch the faces he makes. Watch him sell the premise completely with one side-eye or smirk. He’s basically a genius at sketch comedy. He has all the moves. It’s wild to just watch him be this good at something so casually.
It sent me down a little rabbit hole earlier this week, one that resulted in me stumbling into this Vanity Fair appreciation from a few years ago. I really like this paragraph.
Even Thompson’s impressions tend more toward goofy homage than precise mimicry. From Al Sharpton to Steve Harvey to Jimmy McMillan—a.k.a. the “rent is too damn high!” guy—Thompson has proven himself able to pinpoint the wacky sensibility inside just about anyone. Or to invent that sensibility wholesale, if it’s not inherently there. As Thompson points out, “David Ortiz doesn’t necessarily talk about food like that all the time; it’s just a fun thing for that character to do, as opposed to always talking about baseball.” Thanks to him, though, it’s become difficult to think of “Big Papi” without immediately picturing Thompson’s glimmering smile as he rhapsodizes about “mofongo” or having a “biiiiig lunch.” Ortiz seems to get a kick out of the impression as well; how could he not?
I do not think we appreciate Kenan Thompson enough. Like, as a society. This is me attempting to remedy that. Kenan is the greatest.
If you have questions about television, movies, food, local news, weather, or whatever you want, shoot them to me on Twitter or at firstname.lastname@example.org (put “RUNDOWN” in the subject line). I am the first writer to ever answer reader mail in a column. Do not look up this last part.
The Roys vs. The Gemstones.
These two uber rich families are so similar it’s uncanny; the rich patriarch father who built the empire, gave birth two two shitty sons and a shitty daughter so completely spoiled and completely oblivious to normal life. All the children vying for the dad’s empire by virtue of birthright. The oldest son has kids that he’s bad at raising.
I want a crossover where these two families get into some kind of blood feud. It would be perfect because they both operate in that same evangelical sphere of influence, so the media narrative would be epic. The X-factor is Connor Roy – he would switch sides and betray the Roy family, because the Gemstones are a church and are tax-exempt which would satisfy all of Connor’s political motives. They all exist in the same HBO metaverse so this is definitely a possibility.
This is a good email. I think it nails the Connor issue. Thank you, Chad.
Two additional notes:
- I would like to see Shiv, Tom, Judy, and BJ — two spoiled, overlooked daughters desperately seeking validation, and their two whole-milk-drinking-ass Midwestern husbands — all go on a cross-country road trip in a Winnebago together, and I would like BJ to drive it
- I would like to see Cousin Greg and Keef have a long conversation about literally anything
Baby Billy should show up on Succession next season with no explanation. Just, blammo, there he is in the Waystar offices. He could be Kendall’s new spiritual advisor. Or maybe he’s getting a show. Or maybe he’s just selling elixirs in the lobby. Whatever. We’ve all been through a lot these past few years. This would be a nice little treat.
AND NOW, THE NEWS
To San Jose!
Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office is searching for a woman who stole a $4000 bottle of liquor after having dinner at Mount Hamilton Grandview Restaurant in San Jose.
FANCY BOTTLE HEIST
ALEXA PLAY “SINNERMAN”
ALEXA VOLUME UP
In a security camera footage, the woman was seen walking towards an empty bar, grabbing a bottle of Louis XIII cognac, and walking away with a man on Tuesday night around 10:37 p.m.
Hmm. Upon review, this is not so much a fancy and elaborate heist as much as it is a crime of opportunity. That is… less fun.
Let’s just keep pretending. Go ahead and imagine lasers if you want. I would never take that away from you.
The couple was part of a party of 10 who had dinner prior to the theft, the restaurant manager told KTVU. The group paid $1,600 in cash for dinner.
I know that, technically, stealing is bad and you should not do it. I get that. Laws are in place for a reason and without them we’d just have anarchy in the streets, with people bopping each other with clubs outside the Wegmans and running off with each other’s groceries. Again, I get that.
These people seem kind of fun, right?
I don’t know. I need to think about it some more. A lot to consider here.
“This was very well-choreographed. This was like a hit,” said the manager.
ALEXA PLAY “SINNERMAN”
ALEXA VOLUME UP