#Bingewatch: Your #TV #show guide for 21st – 27th January
Rise & shine bingewatcher, we’ve got yet another veritable feast of killer TV lined up for you this week, as well as some not-so-special shows that you can use as filler while you’re waiting for the next episode of True Detective.
Last week was straight up crazy, with a whole bunch of fresh new series dropping almost everyday. We’re certain you’ve had a hectic weekend checking out the Russo Bros’ latest experiment, Deadly Class, trying to make sense of the latest Riverdale revelations, and getting caught up on prestige dramas & sitcoms alike.
This week has even more superheroic goodies for you. If you were disappointed with the low-budget, underwhelming prattling of M. Night Shyamalan’s Glass over the weekend, make sure you tune in to Black Lightning and Arrow for something with a little more impact.
Beyond that there’s a fresh new miniseries from the BBC, a new comedy show that could either be the next big thing or just have delusions of grandeur, as well as the much-anticipated return of faves like Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt & The Magicians. Check out your upcoming schedule for the week ahead right here.
Black Lightning (The CW)
Superhero serial developed by Salim Akil based on Tony Isabella and Trevor Von Eeden’s DC hero of the same name. Stars Cress Williams (Prison Break) as a retired version of the super- charged vigilante who works as a high school principal until his daughters are kidnapped, forcing him back to a life of heroics.
The darker subject matter means Black Lightning hasn’t found the right time to slot into the multiverse shenanigans of the Arrowverse, but we have no doubt that once the series deals with its abduction & gang plots we’ll soon see him crossing over into the superhero brawls happening just around the corner.
Arrow (The CW)
Linchpin for the CW’s superhero multiverse that now includes The Flash, Supergirl and a whole host of superpowered losers over at Legends of Tomorrow. In this series Oliver Queen escapes a desert island as a new man, taking up a green hood and a sharpshooting bow & arrow to fight conspiracies, espionage and corruption in his home of Star City. Stars Stephen Amell as the modern-day Robin Hood who frequently crosses over with CW’s other Super Friends.
The Magicians (Syfy)
Harry Potter gets a shot of adrenaline and a healthy dose of sexiness in this slick & stylish fantasy series. Jason Ralph (A Most Violent Year) stars as Quentin Coldwater, a lifelong book geek who discovers that his favorite series of magical novels is real when he enrols at Brakebills University for Magical Pedagogy. Expect more devilish trickery & sinister sorcery in the upcoming fourth season.
Pure (WGN America)
Based on the true story of a Mennonite crime ring, in which Noah Funk, a pastor in Southern Ontario is forced to work with the mob shipping drugs across Mexico, the United States, and Canada. Stars Ryan Robbins (Warcraft) as Funk in this underappreciated Canadian crime series, with Season 2 adding Alyson Hannigan (How I Met Your Mother) and Zoie Palmer (Dark Matter) to the cast list.
Broad City (Comedy Central)
Loosely based on the real lives of its creators and stars Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson, two Jewish American women become fast friends and try to make it in New York City. Based on the pair’s webseries of the same name, expect awkward encounters, romantic failures and marijuana high jinks.
The small coastal town of Bristol Cove discovers that the local legends of underwater creatures are far from old wives’ tales when a vengeful mermaid starts terrorising the shore. Stars Eline Powell as the slippery siren on the hunt for her captured sister.
Legacies (The CW)
Spin-off of the supernatural sensation The Vampire Diaries, following Danielle Rose Russell continuing the role she originated on The Originals. In this series, Hope Mikaelson, the descendant of powerful vampire, werewolf, and witch bloodlines, learns to control her unpredictable abilities at the Salvatore School for the Young and Gifted.
The Other Two (Comedy Central)
An aspiring actor struggling to make it to the big leagues has to learn to deal with jealousy and displacement following his thirteen-year-old-brother’s rise to internet fame. The internet is very fickle indeed. A YouTube or Twitter presence could begin life as a wasteland of a channel before sky-rocketing to success after hitting upon a viral sensation, or simply fizzle out as quickly as it begun.
Nowadays many of us feel compelled, obsessed even, with finding that spark of talent to ride to success and fortune, and we’ve had a number of cautionary (and not-so cautionary) pieces of media that explore the rise of a star. However, it’s not so often that we get a glimpse at what happens to the other side. How does fame change a family?
This new sitcom from ex-SNL writers Chris Kelly and Sarah Schneider will ask just that. Cary is a struggling bit part actor played by Drew Tarver (Love), and his sister Brooke (The Good Fight’s Heléne York) is an ex-dancer struggling to find her way in life. The brother and sister duo struggle harder every day to find a place in the world, while their younger brother’s success is catapulted to stardom following a string of viral videos and hit singles.
Also stars Ken Marino (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) and Molly Shannon (Saturday Night Live), this fresh new sitcom will finally give validation to everyone who despised Justin Bieber back during his tween popstar days.
Kingdom (Audience Network)
Frank Grillo (Captain America: Civil War) tries to keep his MMA gym afloat while his sons struggle with addiction and closeted sexuality. One for sports enthusiasts that proves the fights are tough but life hits harder.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Netflix)
Tina Fey’s second sitcom after 30 Rock to take a heightened look at popular culture and New York City follows Ellie Kemper as Kimmy, a vessel of sunshine and optimism who has just spent the last 15 years in a hole in the ground. After escaping from an evil yet strangely charming cultist (Jon Hamm), she begins life anew, determined not to let her inexperience and naivety stand in the way of her dreams.
This last chunk of episodes leading up to the series finale continues on from last summer, which saw Kimmy reunited with her lost backpack, Titus (Tituss Burgess) pitching a new TV show, and Lilian (Jane Krakowski) in mourning.
Black Earth Rising (Netflix)
Co-production between BBC Two and Netflix that unravels a case for the prosecution of an African militia leader. Michaela Coel (Black Mirror) stars as Kate Ashby, a young legal advisor who assists Michael Ennis, an American lawyer played by John Goodman (10 Cloverfield Lane) during the political upheaval that will shatter their lives for good.
Like with many thrilling British dramas we’re getting nowadays, international audiences have the benefit (if you can call it that) of a delayed release. Having already aired in the UK from September to October 2018, Black Earth Rising has received an encouraging reception, with many Best of the Year lists including the miniseries near the top of its rankings.
When US and other audiences get their hands on it now Netflix is dropping the series in the new year, it’s a guarantee of the prestige quality we’re used to seeing in British miniseries.
This eight episode ride through political intrigue and turmulous warfare is slightly longer than the three-six part jobs we’re used to seeing from the UK, but it’s certain to be far more compelling than your average 23-episode series starring a Kiefer Sutherland type. John Goodman in a serious television role is something we’ve wanted to see since he creeped the hell out of us in the surprise Cloverfield spin-off, and Michaela Coel is one step away from becoming the next British icon.
Also features an indelible supporting cast of amazing women, including Tamara Tunie (Law and Order: Special Victims Unit) and Noma Dumezweni (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’s Hermione Granger).
Medici: The Magnificent (Netflix)
Luscious and action-packed period series chronicling the rise of the Medici dynasty, an incomprehensibly wealthy and influential political power based in Florence, Italy. Season 2 departs from the first, which followed Richard Madden as Cosimo the Elder, whose inheritance of the vast Bank of Medici is tainted by the mysterious poisoning of his father during the early 15th Century.
This season jumps forward some 40 years to the 1470s, a time of inequality, oppression, and hidden conspiracies for Italy. Sean Bean (Game of Thrones) makes his series debut as Jacopo de’Pazzi, the head of a rival family who plan to disintegrate the rule of the Medicis through the assassination of brothers Lorenzo (Fear the Walking Dead‘s Daniel Sharman) and Giuliano (Merlin‘s Bradley James).
Part anthology series, part historical epic, each season promises a different, yet equally gripping tale of violence & betrayal set within the ranks of one of the most unexplored areas of European history. Expect incredible production, compelling intrigue, and first class performances.
Strike Back: Revolution (Cinemax)
Ongoing military series based on the writing of author and ex-soldier Chris Ryan. This will be the second reworking of the series that follows the covert operations of Section 20, a secret task force for the British Defence Intelligence Service. Somehow still trundling along despite the loss of series draw Richard Armitage (The Hobbit) way back in 2011.