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Your Weekly Watch List

Mr. and Mrs. Smith Puts a Comedic Spin on the Spy Thriller

Plus: FX tackles Truman Capote's Feud with the Swans of high society, the Genius anthology continues with MLK/X, and more.
  • Donald Glover and Maya Erskine in Mr. and Mrs. Smith (Photo: David Lee/Prime Video)
    Donald Glover and Maya Erskine in Mr. and Mrs. Smith (Photo: David Lee/Prime Video)

    Looking for your next binge-watch, or just need to fill an hour? Welcome to Your Weekly Watch List, our curated collection of the best shows on television. Here's what to watch from Sunday, January 28 through Saturday, February 3.

    Reboots, tabloid gossip, and biopics await this week as Donald Glover and Maya Erskine bring their comedic sensibilities to Prime Video's Mr. and Mrs. Smith series, Feud: Capote vs. The Swans explores the author's dramatic exile from elite New York, and National Geographic recounts the lives of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X in the latest season of Genius.

    The Greatest Night in Pop

    Monday, Netflix

    Fresh off its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, feature-length documentary The Greatest Night in Pop lands on Netflix to take viewers back to the recording of "We Are the World." In January 1985, co-writers Michael Jackson and Lionel Richie recruited 46 artists from across the musical spectrum, including Bruce Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, and Diana Ross, to participate in a song to benefit famine relief in Africa. The response was immediate: Not only did "We Are the World" win two Grammy Awards, but the group raised millions of dollars for the cause and increased awareness on a global scale.

    Decades later, the artists, producers, and engineers involved relive the experience and reveal the behind-the-scenes chaos of that night. Their candid interviews offer a window into one of the most celebrated moments in music history, not to mention a look at the fascinating dynamics between the industry's biggest icons.

    Feud: Capote vs. The Swans

    Wednesday, 10:00 PM ET on FX and Streaming Next-Day on Hulu

    It's been nearly seven years since Feud last graced the screen, but Ryan Murphy's FX anthology returns as deliciously campy as ever. In Season 2, Tom Hollander transforms into acclaimed author Truman Capote, who befriended the elite women of New York City high society — the "swans," as he referred to them — only to turn on them by divulging their secrets in his loosely fictionalized book Answered Prayers. With their dirty laundry splashed across the pages of Esquire, the women resolved to get revenge on their former confidante, who experienced a public fall from grace from which he never recovered.

    Capote vs. The Swans alternates between various timelines as it tracks Capote's friendship with socialites Barbara "Babe" Paley (Naomi Watts), Slim Keith (Diane Lane), C.Z. Guest (Chloë Sevigny), and Lee Radziwill (Calista Flockhart), his decision to publish details about their scandalous personal lives, and the fallout. Along the way, writer Jon Robin Baiz and a talented directing team (led by Gus Van Sant, who helmed six of eight episodes) raise questions about the line between truth and fiction, art and reality, though they couch those big ideas in a glamorous, star-studded package.

    Genius: MLK/X

    Thursday, 9:00 PM ET on National Geographic and Streaming Next-Day on Disney+ and Hulu

    For the first time, National Geographic's anthology series charts the journeys of not one Genius, but two — in this case, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (Kelvin Harrison Jr.) and Malcolm X (Aaron Pierre). Because King and X met just once, in 1964, their stories play out separately across eight episodes, with showrunners Raphael Jackson Jr. and Damione Macedon highlighting key similarities and differences between their upbringings, careers, and philosophies in hopes of painting a more complete picture of the civil rights leaders.

    Genius: MLK/X also looks outward to other relationships in the lives of King and X, particularly their respective marriages to Coretta Scott King (Weruche Opia) and Betty Shabazz (Jayme Lawson). (X and Shabazz's eldest daughter Ambassador Shabazz serves as a consulting producer on the show.) The season aims to center the contributions of these women, who were highly influential in their own right, setting the anthology apart from other docudramas about the powerful, often misunderstood men. In a show of corporate synergy, episodes will stream next-day on Disney+ and Hulu after airing linearly on National Geographic; the premiere will also be simulcast on ABC at the same time as its Nat Geo premiere.

    Mr. and Mrs. Smith

    Friday, Prime Video (Full Season)
    *Our must-watch pick of the week

    Mr. and Mrs. Smith has always been sexy, but for the most part, Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's 2005 film played it straight with their relationship. That fact alone immediately differentiates the film (and the 1996 TV drama) from Donald Glover and Francesca Sloane's reboot series, which leans heavily into the comedy of two people inexperienced in both espionage and love. When John (Glover) and Jane Smith (Maya Erskine) are paired up by their mysterious spy agency, they reluctantly accept their new cover as a wealthy married couple in New York City. But as they fall deeper into the world of car chases and assassination attempts, John and Jane begin to fall in love, complicating their ability to execute high-risk missions that require the utmost focus and emotional detachment.

    Each mission brings new people into the Smiths' orbit — that explains the massive supporting cast, which includes Parker Posey, John Turturro, Alexander Skarsgård, and Michaela Coel — but the show always comes back around to Glover and Erskine, who toggle between lighthearted, sweetly romantic moments and heart-pounding action with ease. Their chemistry makes this quirky take on the espionage thriller sing, despite its familiar beats. All eight episodes of Season 1 drop Friday on Prime Video.

    If You Have...

    An Hour

    The Irrational Season 1 Winter Premiere: Monday, 10:00 PM ET on NBC
    Quantum Leap Season 2 Winter Premiere: Tuesday, 10:00 PM ET on NBC
    Vanderpump Rules Season 11 Premiere: Tuesday, 8:00 PM ET on Bravo
    Percy Jackson and the Olympians Season 1 Finale: Tuesday, 9:00 PM ET/6:00 PM PT on Disney+

    An Evening

    The Unbreakable Tatiana Suarez: Wednesday, 9:00 PM ET on HBO
    Chasing Flavor: Thursday, Max
    Kings From Queens: The Run DMC Story: Thursday, Peacock
    Kokomo City: Friday, Paramount+ with Showtime

    A Full Day

    NASCAR: Full Speed: Tuesday, Netflix
    Alexander: The Making of a God: Wednesday, Netflix
    Choir: Wednesday, Disney+
    Clone High Season 2: Thursday, Max
    Love & WWE: Bianca & Montez

    Up Next

    Curb Your Enthusiasm Season 12: Sunday, February 4 on HBO
    Abbott Elementary Season 3: Wednesday, February 7 on ABC
    Halo Season 2: Thursday, February 8 on Paramount+
    One Day: Thursday, February 8 on Netflix
    Tokyo Vice Season 2: Thursday, February 8 on Max

    Claire Spellberg Lustig is the Senior Editor at Primetimer and a scholar of The View. Follow her on Twitter at @c_spellberg.

    TOPICS: Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Feud: Capote vs. The Swans, Genius, The Greatest Night in Pop, Donald Glover, Maya Erskine