Let’s talk about the long and winding career of Patricia Arquette. Her film debut was in the third installment of A Nightmare on Elm Street, and her breakthrough roles came in the Quentin Tarantino-scripted True Romance and the Tim Burton-directed Ed Wood. While she wasn’t yet blowing critics away on the screen, her willingness to take on artistically daring projects — Flirting with Disaster with David O. Russell, Lost Highway with David Lynch; Bringing Out the Dead with Martin Scorsese — made her very interesting.
The part of Patricia Arquette’s career when she started winning awards came very suddenly. While starring on the NBC series Medium, about a crime-solving psychic (based on the life of Allison DuBois, aka the e-cig medium who was so mean to Kyle Richards on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills), Arquette got a surprise Emmy nomination that turned into a surprise Emmy win. Her Oscar win similarly came out of nowhere, after years without any notable performances. Boyhood may well have been the renaissance she needed, because five years later, she’s sitting on TWO performances certain to earn her her Emmy consideration. In Showtime’s Escape at Dannemora, Arquette’s prison employee who makes terrible, terrible choices was a good enough role to get awards voters to leapfrog Arquette over Amy Adams in Sharp Objects for the honor of being this season’s TV Actress Who Wins Everything. Only the Emmys await. Except the Emmys will now also have to consider Arquette in Hulu’s The Act.
SEASON FINALE: The dark and winding story of Dee Dee and Gypsy Rose Blanchard comes to a head on the finale episode of The Act. Based on a true story, the deeply messed-up mother/daughter tale is your current Reason to Subscribe to Hulu. Expect it to go out on a high note. Streaming on Hulu
SERIES PREMIERE: Bravo continues to expand its brand into TLC-style lifestyle improvement territory with Best Room Wins, a Genevieve Gorder-hosted design/home makeover competition where top interior designers compete to create luxury looks for less for couples in need. 10:00 PM ET on Bravo
SPECIAL PRESENTATION: Celebrating the year in music that outsold, the 2019 Billboard Music Awards are on NBC. Promised to perform are Madonna and Maluma, who just recently premiered their video for “Medellin”; BTS, fresh off blowing the doors off Studio 8H at Saturday Night Live (they’ll be joined by Halsey); and a Taylor Swift opening number that’s already being hyped to the heavens. Kelly Clarkson, currently in-house NBC talent on The Voice, hosts. 8:00 PM ET on NBC
SEASON PREMIERE: As ABC’s venerable Modern Family barrels towards the finale of its penultimate season, we get an episode titled “Commencement,” and we’re all just going to pretend we don’t know that the West Wing episode where Zoey Bartlet was kidnapped was also called “Commencement.” In this case, Jay is giving the commencement address at the high-school graduation, while Claire mixes it up with an old rival. 9:00 PM ET on ABC
Joe Reid is the Managing Editor at Primetimer and co-host of the This Had Oscar Buzz podcast. His work has appeared in Decider, NPR, HuffPost, The Atlantic, Slate, Polygon, Vanity Fair, The Herald Sun, Vulture, The A.V. Club and more.