Secret identities and a whole lot of scandal – that about sums up television’s big premieres and finales this week. From whatever (ahem, or whomever) Don Draper/Dick Whitman is doing on Mad Men, to the deepening mystery behind the origin of the clones on Orphan Black, and however the heck Olivia is getting out of her latest jam on Scandal, there’s plenty of must-watch-live TV this week. But there are lots of reasons to get off the couch, too. Here are our picks over the next seven days:
Mad Men premiere, 10 p.m. ET, AMC
It’s 19somethingorother and Don Draper and Co. have entered a new era of polyester fashion. That’s about all we’ve been able to gather from the promos and super-secretive cast and crew of Mad Men as the series enters its seventh and final season. But the wait is finally over, and come Monday, we won’t be able to stop talking about Don doing that thing with that person.
Binge-watch Orphan Black season 1 before Saturday’s season 2 premiere
The addictive first season of this cult hit is just 10 episodes. So if you watch two episodes over the next five days, you’ll be all caught up and ready for the season 2 premiere on Saturday (9 p.m. ET, BBC America). Bonus: You didn’t have to suffer through that excruciating 9-month hiatus like the rest of us to find out the fates of clones Sarah, Alison, Cosima, and Rachel.
Fargo premiere, 10 p.m. ET, FX
It finally feels like spring here in NYC, but we’re fully embracing the harsh Minnesota winter featured in this exquisite dark comedy inspired by the Coen brothers’ 1996 film of the same name. Billy Bob Thornton, Martin Freeman, and a superb supporting cast make this a “true crime” tale you’ll be obsessing over.
Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today’s Best Women Writers in stores
Thirty acclaimed writers share their tales of Motherhood: Day 1 in this collection of stories is edited by Eleanor Henderson and Anna Solomon. P.S. Mother’s Day is May 11.
Scandal finale, 10 p.m. ET, ABC
Just how are you gonna fix this one, Ms. Fixer?
Transcendence in theaters
What is the appropriate amount of time to feel bad for Johnny Depp’s nearly-assassinated artificial intelligence expert? Up until his brain/android doppelganger starts trying to take over the world?
Record Store Day
Vinyl geeks, rejoice! This is the day your favorite artists and record stores unite to offer exclusive releases – everyone from Katy Perry to The Pogues is getting in on the act this year – and otherwise celebrate the joy in putting down the needle and listening to the subtle crackle underneath a great album.
Bears documentary in theaters
Because OMG the baby ones.