Televisualist: We Refuse to Grant You Dignity, the Olympics




Televisualist: We Refuse to Grant You Dignity, the Olympics

Each week, Torontoist examines the upcoming TV listings and makes note of programs that are entertaining, informative, and of quality. Or, alternately, none of those. The result: Televisualist.

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Still the least gay Olympics ever, according to Russian authorities, who had Tatu, the famous fake lesbian Russian band, arrive to sing at the opening festivities, presumably because all the real lesbians were in jail that day.


Global is re-airing Vikings, the surprisingly good historical drama with lots of axes that aired last year. Was good before, is still good now, so catch it if you missed it the first time around. (10 p.m.)

Today in Olympics: Canada takes on China in women’s curling, so you can be patriotic about curling (not even going to pretend that we get curling), men’s single luge finals, women’s slopestyle, men’s downhill medal final, women’s super combined slalom, short-track speed skating—and Canada takes on Finland in women’s hockey. (CBC/TSN/SportsNetNBC, all day)


The Simpsons rerun of the week: “Homer Goes to Prep School,” a recent episode in which Homer joins a survivalist group. Better than average by far for late-period Simpsons. “Marge, this is it, TEOTWAWKI!” “…’The end of the world as we know it’?” “Uh-huh.” (Fox, 11 p.m.)

Today in Olympics: Both Canada’s men AND women take on Sweden in curling, so Sweden is the enemy today! No shopping at IKEA—you might jinx something and then we’d lose at curling, we guess! Also: gold medal finals in women’s slopestyle (can we all stop pretending that “slopestyle” is a for-real word?) and the qualifying rounds of cross-country skiing, which sounds like the dullest possible thing imaginable, but HEY, OLYMPICS. (CBC/TSN/SportsNetNBC, all day)


Swamp People returns for a fifth season because TV audiences love them some rednecks, basically. (History Television, 9 p.m.)

Buy This Restaurant is a new reality show about people who decide to open restaurants and use the TV show to help pick a space for their restaurant. Not televised: the fact that restaurants fail more often than just about any other business there is. (Food Network, 10 p.m.)

Today in Olympics: Men’s halfpipe gold medal final, pairs figure skating, doubles luge, and the Canada/U.S.A. women’s hockey game, which is gonna get all the press, so why did we even bother mentioning the other stuff, really? (CBC/TSN/SportsNetNBC, all day)


Today in Olympics: The women’s 10-km cross-country skiing “classic,” which does not seem like the best descriptor, all things being equal. Also, Canada takes on Denmark in men’s curling, so don’t eat a danish today, because if you do, you are probably a traitor somehow. Also, figure skating pairs gold medal final, and men’s hockey kicks off with Russia/Slovenia, U.S.A./Slovakia, Finland/Austria—and finally Canada takes on Norway, so this is when the Olympics will get truly unbearable from a media perspective. (CBC/TSN/SportsNetNBC, all day)


Be My Valentine, Charlie Brown and A Charlie Brown Valentine air back to back, and if your Valentine’s Day is going to be filled with hope and regret and probable failure and then going home to live with your cats forever, Charlie Brown is right there with you, dude. (ABC, 8 p.m.)

Today in Olympics: Men’s super combined downhill (ever notice that they give skiing events like six thousand different adjectives?), men’s 15-km “classic” cross-country (like that one: Is this supposed to be like Classic Coke, or are we talking like the Winter Classic? Is it congratulatory, or is there some ultra-modern version of cross-country where there is loud dubstep playing at all times?), women’s aerials (and how many “go in the air and do tricks” events do we really need for skiing anyway?), Sweden vs. Switzerland in men’s hockey, men’s and women’s skeleton, and the women’s 15-km individual biathlon (no jokes about biathlon, they have guns). (CBC/TSN/SportsNetNBC, all day)

The Weekend

The Mask of Zorro is a genuinely great movie—a throwback to old-school swashbuckler films and a worthy successor to them, but innovative at the same time. Antonio Banderas, Anthony Hopkins, and Catherine Zeta-Jones are all top-notch in this, and there are great sword fights and stunts and bits with horses and everything you could possibly want out of a Zorro movie. (CHCH, 8 p.m. Sunday)

This weekend in Olympics: on Saturday, you can watch Canada versus Great Britain in men’s curling, women’s cross-country skiing relay (because one-person cross-country skiing was not dull enough), U.S.A./Russia in men’s hockey (so you can pretend it’s 1980 all over again), more skeleton, men’s ski jumping, large hill ski jumping (there are specific sub-events for ski jumping because there are a lot of complexities involved in jumping with skis), and lots and lots of short-track speed skating. On Sunday, there is Canada taking on the U.S.A. in men’s curling AND women’s hockey—so suck it, Yankees—along with more short track speed skating, probably the seventeenth variation on ski jumping, and men’s cross-country skiing relay, in case all that beating up the U.S.A. got you too excited and you need a breather. (CBC/TSN/SportsNetNBC, all weekend)