Stargazing

Monday Memo: ‘Walking Dead’ is adorable, and Big Slick hits the Chiefs game

Chiefs' Susie and Warpaint meet Rob Riggle and David Koechner

While Kansas City Chiefs horse Warpaint and Susie were warming up before Sunday's football game, actors Rob Riggle and David Koechner stopped by Arrowhead Stadium.
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While Kansas City Chiefs horse Warpaint and Susie were warming up before Sunday's football game, actors Rob Riggle and David Koechner stopped by Arrowhead Stadium.

Our nation’s top theater and television critic, President-elect Donald J. Trump, didn’t have much good to say about this weekend’s entertainment, but he did manage to make social media entertaining again. Even if it was in the vein of, “Oh, good grief, what now?”

Nonetheless, here are updates on our local celebs, some brief recaps of our favorite weekend shows and a look ahead at the week’s entertainment to help you ease into your Monday.

KC’s stars

▪ David Koechner and Rob Riggle tailgated at the Chiefs game on Sunday to promote the annual Big Slick fundraiser for Children’s Mercy Hospital. They were on the field sporting some sweet David S. Pumpkins’-style Chiefs gear recording segments for various TV shows before 8 a.m. Then they partied with some VIPs in the parking lot. The event raised about $50,000 for Children’s Mercy (in addition to the $1.3 million Big Slick raised in June), and the two were probably the highlight of what was an otherwise dreadful sportsball game. Watch the video above.

▪ When we saw KC’s Jason Sudeikis reprise his Mitt Romney impersonation on “Saturday Night Live,” we had hopes he might jump back in to his devil suit on “Weekend Update.” Unfortunately, that was not to be. Meanwhile, the reviews are in for his performance as teacher John Keating in “Dead Poets Society” at the Classic Stage Company in New York. The Hollywood Reporter says he “is impressive throughout, drawing on his sketch comedy and improv skills to inject spontaneity and looseness into Keating’s interactions with his students. Even if he can’t hide the shortsighted, romantic naiveté written into the character, he never undersells the dedicated educator’s sincerity.” The New York Times says, “ He has a natural stage presence and a mellow baritone voice, and he’s charming when Mr. Keating delivers jokey, improv-style asides to his students.”

TV show recaps

It probably goes without saying, but spoilers ahead.

▪ Whenever Jesus shows up, you know you’re in for an extra adorable episode of “The Walking Dead,” and Sunday’s was no exception. Sasha and an ailing Maggie have taken refuge at the Hilltop. Fearing reprisals from the Saviors (whom he conspired with Rick to murder in their sleep), Hilltop leader Gregory wants them out. Jesus comes to their defense, but Gregory doesn’t care that the local doc has ordered Maggie to stay in bed. Maggie doesn’t seem to care about that tiny little matter, either, because she’s soon climbing on the roof of her trailer to bark out orders to the Hilltoppers during a nighttime invasion of walkers. Jackholes from the Saviors have breached the gate with a locked-up AMC Gremlin blaring classical music. So, naturally, Maggie, who grew up on Herschel’s farm, jumps in the Hilltoppers’ John Deere and goes all monster truck over it. If “The Walking Dead” has taught us anything, it’s that country women and farm girls will be essential to our surviving the apocalypse. Meanwhile, Enid makes a break for the Hilltop to help Maggie but Carl jumps in a car and tracks her down. For some reason, they ditch the car in favor of walking, which leads to the roadside discovery of a couple of pairs of roller skates, which leads to the cutest zombie couples skate of all time. Star Sonequa Martin-Green talks with the Hollywood Reporter about her character Sasha and how maybe she’s cursed here. A preview of next week’s episode is below.

▪ If you dumped “Westworld” after the first couple of episodes because it was so slow, the Thanksgiving holiday might be a good time to re-evaluate. Man, it’s good. And there are only two episodes left. Last week we said Emmy awaits for Anthony Hopkins, and this week the same can be said of Jeffrey Wright, who plays Bernard, and Thandie Newton, who plays Maeve. And Evan Rachel Wood, who plays Delores, can’t be far behind. Sunday’s installment dealt with the aftermath of Theresa’s murder. Ford says he’ll relieve Bernard of the memories of the tragedy if he’ll destroy all the evidence that the two of them colluded to kill her. Maeve continues her awakening, becoming something like Agent Smith in “The Matrix,” as she’s able to walk through the park, stare down other hosts and rewrite their code by giving them a good stare. Delores continues to be haunted by Arnold’s voice and visions of lives past and future. And we finally get some answers from the Man in Black and how he may have been instrumental in the host gaining some semblance of real consciousness (but he’s not saying he’s Arnold; not yet, anyway). Entertainment Weekly says the Man in Black’s scenes help along a fan theory that Delores and William’s storyline happens years earlier and William is a younger version of the Man in Black. Read more here. A preview of next week’s episode is below.

Weekend reviews

▪ The Star’s music writer, Timothy Finn, took in the Kip Moore show Saturday at the Uptown. In his review, Tim wrote, “The country singer-songwriter spent two hours whipping a sold-out crowd of about 2,300 into a sustained frenzy, serenading them with songs about drinking and weekend debauchery, getting reckless, having sex, pursuing sex and, occasionally, surviving heartache.” The full review can be found here.

▪ Karrin Allyson’s performance Friday at the Folly Theater took on a somber tone, as the Kansas-born jazz singer remembered pianist Mose Allison and Ron Ubel, a man who played a role in Allyson’s ascent. Music correspondent Bill Brownlee said she and the musicians sounded graceful and beautiful. The full review can be found here.

▪ In case you missed the profiles of up-and-coming Kansas City rappers by Star features reporter Aaron Randle, you can read them here.

This week’s music

▪ Kenny Rogers performs Friday at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence. Tix are $19-$100 in advance through silversteineyecentersarena.com.

▪ Yellow Claw performs Saturday at the Uptown. Tickets are $25 in advance through uptowntheater.com.

▪ Singer/songwriter David Ramirez performs Sunday at the Riot Room. Tickets are $12 in advance at theriotroom.com.

New this week

▪ Movies: “Moana”; “Bad Santa 2”; “Allied”; “Loving.”

▪ Books: Michael Chabon, “Moonglow”; Wally Lamb, “I’ll Take You There”; James Patterson, “Cross the Line”; Paulo Coelho, “The Spy.”

▪ Music: Garth Brooks, “Gunslinger”; The Weeknd, “Starboy.”

▪ Video games: “Darksiders”

▪ Video: “Hell or High Water”; “War Dogs”; “Kubo and the Two Strings”; “Mechanic: Resurrection”

David Frese: 816-234-4463, @DavidFrese

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