From fierce queens to the trials of fatherhood, we round up the top 10 shows to watch this week
1. Why Women Kill – Sunday, June 13, 9 p.m., W Network | Season Premiere
W NetworkWhen Allison Tolman appeared alongside Colin Hanks and Martin Freeman in the inaugural season of Fargo, critics and viewers alike fell in love with her quirky charisma and ability to nail dark scenes with a comedic undertone. Those skills were perhaps lost in her follow-up TV drama, ABC’s Emergence. However when that sci-fi series was cancelled, Tolman was free to join the second outing of this equally quirky anthology from Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry. Season one jumped between three different timelines and three different leading ladies (Lucy Liu, Ginnifer Goodwin and Kirby Howell-Baptiste). Season two sticks to the L.A. of 1949, where Tolman stars as Alma, a wannabe high-society woman who doesn’t quite fit in—much to her dismay. “I see these garden club ladies every week at this bistro downtown,” the housewife laments in the trailer. “They’re so chic. And they seem to have so much fun together. I’d be happy every day of my life if I had a group of elegant friends like that.”
As they say, be careful what you wish for. Because when Alma’s life takes a turn for the murderous, she finds herself with everything she’s ever wanted... and slowly losing her soul because of it. Per the official logline, this season will “explore what it means to be beautiful, the hidden truth behind the façades people present to the world, the effects of being ignored and overlooked by society and finally, the lengths one woman will go in order to finally belong.”
Also in the mix for this dark suburban satire are Once Upon a Time’s Lana Parrilla, Shaun of the Dead’s Nick Frost and Queen of the South’s Veronica Falcón.
2. Headspace: Unwind Your Mind – Tuesday, June 15, Netflix | Series Premiere
NetflixThe third instalment in Netflix’s Headspace series (following guides to meditation and sleep) is described as “a fully interactive mindfulness experience.” Viewers are led down one of three customizable paths: Meditation (a simple guided session), Relax (for a daily wind-down) or Sleep (to calm the mind and body before bed). As the official synopsis says: “With its welcoming animation, and featuring the thoughtful communication style that’s made the Headspace app beloved by millions, Unwind Your Mind is an indispensable tool for anyone seeking to kick off or deepen their relationship with a meditation practice, or maybe just finally get a good night’s rest.”
3. Revolution Rent – Tuesday, June 15, 8 p.m. & Midnight, HBO Canada
HBO CanadaThis documentary follows Andy Señor, Jr. as he travels to Cuba, where he’s tasked with directing a stage production of Rent, the country’s first Broadway musical produced by an American company in more than 50 years. Returning to his exiled parents’ homeland, Señor Jr. embarks on a deeply personal journey as he reimagines the show with a Cuban context, exploring his family’s heritage and the complex relationship they have with the country they love. Señor Jr. (who played the role of Angel in the original Broadway production) develops the groundbreaking musical, highlighting the many setbacks and accomplishments that he and his cast and crew encounter along the way.
4. Paris Is Burning – Wednesday, June 16, 4:45 p.m., Starz2
Starz2Anyone who’s seen critically acclaimed FX drama Pose may want to check out this award-winning 1990 doc that certainly inspired the series, taking a deep dive into NYC ball culture of the late 1980s, providing a thoughtful exploration of race, class, gender and sexuality in America during that era.
5. The Handmaid’s Tale – Wednesday, June 16, 6 p.m., CTV Drama | Season Finale
CTV DramaBlessed be those Fruit Loops! It’s hard to believe that after such a long wait for new episodes, the fourth season comes to a close this week with a much-anticipated (and let’s be honest: probably harrowing) finale.
This latest instalment of the Emmy winner has continued its all-too-timely depiction of how women can (and historically have been) treated, but it’s also opened up new avenues of storytelling that the first few seasons couldn’t, given the tight quarters of the main stage, a.k.a. the Waterford residence. Between bombings in Chicago, pulse-pounding boat rides and further exploration of life in Canada, the scope of the show has grown immensely.
Expect horizons to broaden and stakes to rise even further in season five, which has already been greenlit by U.S. streamer Hulu.
6. The Hustler – Thursday, June 17, 10 p.m., ABC | Season Premiere
ABCCraig Ferguson is back to helm a second season of the game show where five quiz whizzes work together to build up a prize pot. The catch? One of the contestants is secretly a “hustler” who already knows the answers, but must keep their identity hidden if they hope to swipe all the cash.
7. Fatherhood – Friday, June 18, Netflix
NetflixViewers are used to having comedian Kevin Hart crack them up in such flicks as Ride Along and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, but his latest promises to pull on the heartstrings as well as tickle the funnybone. Originally scheduled for theatrical release last spring, tells the true story of Matt, a Boston man who’s woefully unprepared to be a single father when his beloved wife unexpectedly dies shortly after giving birth to their daughter, Maddy. Devoting himself to giving Maddy (Melody Hurd) the best life he can, Matt tackles the daily challenges of fatherhood with as much energy as he can muster, always putting his daughter first. However, Matt’s life becomes further complicated when he meets a woman (DeWanda Wise) and falls in love, forcing him to navigate a complex array of emotions along the way. Produced by Barack and Michelle Obama’s Higher Ground Productions, the film also stars Alfre Woodard, Lil Rel Howery, Anthony Carrigan and Paul Reiser.
8. Luca – Friday, June 18, Disney+
Disney+Pixar’s reputation for crafting children’s movies that are more sophisticated, insightful and heartfelt than most of the flicks aimed at adults is well-established at this point. Expect that rep to grow with this latest addition to their catalogue—which, like Soul before it, is heading straight to Disney+ instead of the big screen.
The story follows a teen named Luca (B.C.’s own Jacob Tremblay, Room) who—along with his new best friend Alberto (Jack Dylan Grazer, It)—is spending his summer in a seaside village on the Italian Riviera. It isn’t long, however, before the fun turns into a freakout, thanks to the townsfolk discovering there are alien sea monsters living in local waters! Didn’t see that plot development coming, did you? Actually, there’s still one slightly more surprising development yet to come: Luca and Alberto are, in fact, the sea monsters in question.
Fortunately, when they’re in humanoid form, it’s relatively easy for this duo to disguise themselves, which leads to no end of adventures as the boys discover what life above the surface is like. Somewhat less fortunately, these disguises aren’t infallible, so when their identities are revealed, they must test the depths of their new, human friendships... and yes, that is an intentional ocean pun.
9. The United States vs. Billie Holiday – Friday, June 18, 8 p.m., Crave1
Crave1Precious director and Empire co-creator Lee Daniels helms a loosely fact-based account of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics’ efforts to take down songstress Billie Holiday (Andra Day) in the 1940s, via an exceptionally messy sting operation.
10. Juneteenth: An Evening of Celebration & Resilience – Soul of a Nation – Friday, June 18, 9:01 p.m., ABC
ABCThis two-hour celebration of Juneteenth—celebrating the emancipation of those that were enslaved in the United States—offers intimate storytelling, powerful tributes and musical performances.