What’s on TV Thursday: ‘Snowfall’ and ‘Straight Outta Compton’

What’s on TV Thursday: ‘Snowfall’ and ‘Straight Outta Compton’


The second season of “Snowfall” wraps up on FX. And “Straight Outta Compton” tells a gangster rap rags-to-riches tale.

SNOWFALL 10 p.m. on FX. In a review for The New York Times of the first season of this crack cocaine origin story, James Poniewozik wrote that “there’s a lightness to the beginning of ‘Snowfall,’ a sense that this is the calm before the blizzard.” If weather is gauged by violence and explosions, then the series has indeed become a tempest. Damson Idris stars as Franklin Saint, a sharply intelligent drug dealer in Los Angeles in the mid-1980s, at the dawn of the crack cocaine epidemic. In the second season, which ends on Thursday, Franklin and the rest of the leading characters (including a kingpin played by Alon Aboutboul and a C.I.A. officer played by Carter Hudson) are deepened considerably. That may have something to do with the addition of a member to its writing staff: the novelist Walter Mosley, who joined for the second season. In an interview with the website Vulture, Mr. Mosley spoke to the series’ political resonance. “The incarceration of people in the drug war in this country is a tragedy,” he said. “A lot of that is because of the drug war that’s been going on for decades, a war ‘Snowfall’ is telling people about.”

STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON (2015) 7 p.m. on FX. Another ’80s Los Angeles drug dealer opens this gangster rap fable, with Eazy-E (Jason Mitchell), the future N.W.A. rapper, keeping a cool head during a meetup gone extremely awry. It’s a stirring reminder of the origins of the group, which is perhaps best known for starting the careers of Dr. Dre and Ice Cube. Those two men are played by Corey Hawkins and O’Shea Jackson Jr. (Ice Cube’s eldest son) in this biopic about the group’s formation and breakthrough, and the tumultuous period that followed. In her review for The Times, Manohla Dargis called the movie “an exultant rap-to-riches story.”

ACE VENTURA: PET DETECTIVE (1994) 7 p.m. on Freeform. After a couple years spent mostly on hiatus, Jim Carrey returned this month in Showtime’s “Kidding.” Those wanting to revisit this funnyman’s genesis can watch him here in one of his most beloved roles, as a private investigator with a love of creatures and sarcasm. The film, combined with “The Mask” and “Dumb and Dumber,” made 1994 a year when comedies starring Mr. Carrey grossed over $700 million. The sequel, ACE VENTURA: WHEN NATURE CALLS (1995), is on Freeform directly after, at 9 p.m., and BRUCE ALMIGHTY (2003), starring a literally divine Mr. Carrey, is directly before, at 5 p.m.

DEAD LUCKY on Sundance Now. Rachel Griffiths (“Six Feet Under”) and Yoson An star in this four-episode Australian crime thriller about a detective (Griffiths) and her trainee (An) after a colleague is killed.

A GREATER SOCIETY (2018) on Vimeo. A timely reminder that grass-roots political activism can be initiated at any age, this documentary follows a group of retirees in Florida (a notorious battleground state) canvassing during the 2014 midterm elections.



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