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Here are the nerdy cinephile in-jokes for Documentary Now! season two

Documentary Now!

Fans worried that Bill Hader, Seth Meyers, and Fred Armisen might have burned through their entire stockpile of precisely observed filmmaking references for the first season of Documentary Now! can consider themselves officially put at ease. Meyers got up on stage at an IFC press event today to share the details of three of the show’s second-season episodes, as well as the source documentaries that they intend to give the same affectionate, detail-heavy mimicking they treated films like Grey Gardens, The Thin Blue Line, and History Of The Eagles to in the first.

First up: “The Bunker,” a political drama aping the 1993 political documentary The War Room, which focused on George Stephanopoulos, James Carville, and their combined efforts to transform a charismatic, philandering Arkansas governor into the 42nd President of the United States. The Documentary Now! version will step down The War Room’s stakes—focusing on the Ohio governor’s race instead of a presidential campaign—but presumably not the conniving, lying, or manipulation.


Meanwhile, food voyeurs will be treated to “Juan Likes Rice And Chicken,” an homage to the beloved foodie porno Jiro Dreams Of Sushi. Shot on location in Colombia, the episode will tell the story of a chef, his family, and their shared quest to master cooking chicken and buttered rice. Finally, the show will return to the work of Grey Gardens’ Albert and David Maysles, who captured the sad desperation of a quartet of door-to-door salesmen in 1969’s Salesman. Substitute big, awkward globes—and a population that would prefer the far more convenient atlas—for high-end bibles, and you’ve got Documentary Now!’s “Globesmen,” the third episode Meyers revealed.

The full second season of Documentary Now! will run for seven episodes, so there are still four potential parodies that we haven’t heard anything about. That’ll probably come as a relief to some, since stumbling blind into the show’s meticulous, bizarre recreations of past documentary worlds was one of the pleasures of the show’s first run.

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