From homegrown Canadian queens to comedy classics, we round up the top 10 shows to watch this week
1. 9 to 5 – Sunday, June 28, 4:15 p.m., Starz2
IMDBDolly Parton, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda form one of cinema’s most iconic comic trios, in the endlessly rewatchable story of three secretaries who kidnap their misogynist, sexually-harassing, idea-stealing boss (Dabney Coleman) and start running his company themselves.
2. House Hunters: Comedians on Couches – Sunday, June 28, 5 p.m. & 5: 30 p.m. (repeating at 8 p.m. & 8:30 p.m.), HGTV
HGTVSince the House Hunters crew can’t go to people’s houses at the moment, they’ve enlisted famous, homebound comedians to riff on classic episodes. Said comics include: Whitney Cummings, J.B. Smoove, Dan Levy and John Mulaney.
3. Penny Dreadful: City of Angles – Sunday, June 28, 9 p.m., Crave1 | Season Finale
CraveWhen this bloodcurdling spinoff debuted, viewers were thrilled to see the Grand Guignol franchise up and shrieking again—albeit with new characters and a 50-year time jump. While some critics have bemoaned the show’s uneven plotting and character development, it’s clear there’s still a rabid fanbase for creator John Logan’s brand of socially incisive terror. What’s more, the series has offered the incomparable Natalie Dormer (Game of Thrones) another showcase for her devilish charisma. In tonight’s end game, Fly Rico has a tough time managing a volatile crowd following some sad news, while Peter Craft, Elsa and the boys find themselves trapped in a car in the middle of the riot. And as Lewis and Tiago rush to protect Brian from the Nazis, the Vega family experiences a profoundly moving Day of the Dead ceremony.
4. Canada Day Together – Wednesday, July 1, 8 p.m., CBC
CBCCanada Day is normally celebrated with a huge concert held at Parliament Hill in Ottawa. However, as you may have noticed, 2020 is hardly a typical year; as a result, get ready for the country’s first-ever virtual Canada Day celebration, featuring artists performing from their homes. Scheduled performers include Corneille, The Jerry Cans, Avril Lavigne, Sarah McLachlan, Haviah Mighty, Alexandra Stréliski, The Sheepdogs and more.
5. Unsolved Mysteries – Wednesday, July 1, Netflix | Series Premiere
NetflixOne of reality television’s most enduring hits is back with a new reboot. While the late Robert Stack hosted the original series, this version won’t have a host. Each of the 12 episodes will focus on one unsolved mystery, ranging from a truly bizarre disappearance to a paranormal encounter.
6. Canada's Drag Race – Thursday, July 2, 8 p.m., Crave 1 | Series Premiere
CraveFly those flags and rev up your engines because RuPaul’s popular drag queen series is getting the maple syrup treatment with the debut of this Canadian spinoff.
While RuPaul isn’t hosting, there are many crossovers with the OG iteration. They include many of the same challenges and competition themes, like Snatch Game, RuMail and of course, the Untucked Sessions. Another, even more fabulous crossover is found on the judging panel. Season-11 competitor Brooke Lynn Hytes joins model/actor Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman and model/runway coach Stacey McKenzie as the inaugural season’s expert judges. Meanwhile, etalk’s Traci Melchor has been named Canada’s very first Squirrel Friend.
7. Council of Dads – Thursday, July 2, 8 p.m., City & NBC | Season Finale
CityIf NBC learned anything from the explosive success of This Is Us, it’s that today’s audiences are craving feel-good family stories with just a touch of trauma. (And maybe a dash of Milo Ventimiglia.) Word’s still out as to whether this particular familial saga (which, let’s be honest, was pretty blatantly gunning to be the next This Is Us) will continue past tonight’s finale. Ratings have been steady, but it’s far from a breakout hit (despite having This Is Us as its lead-in). If you haven’t yet had occasion to check it out, Council of Dads follows the family of Scott Penny (Tom Everett Scott), a man diagnosed with cancer, at serious risk of leaving his pregnant wife (Sarah Wayne Callies) and four kids without a dad. And so he’s called upon his friends (Clive Standen, J. August Richards, Michael O’Neill) to serve as his kids’ mentors and his wife’s supporters. Tears have been shed, hearts have been warmed, and this season-ender will no doubt continue that trend—the only question left is whether the episode will wrap things up definitively or leave the door open, just a smidge, for another year of heartfelt surrogate fatherhood.
8. Hamilton – Friday, July 3, Disney+
Disney+On the eve of America’s Independence Day, those who have thus far not been able to score an elusive ticket to the perpetually sold-out cultural phenomenon Hamilton are about to be gifted a front-row seat. The hit Broadway musical about American Founding Father Alexander Hamilton was initially headed for movie theatres in October 2021, but made the move from big screen to digital in light of the global health crisis, to provide more exclusive content to the subscribers of Disney’s new streaming service.
What no one could have anticipated was that the decision to make this show of racial inclusivity available a year early would coincide with a civil rights movement that is shaking the world, and make the musical more timely than ever.
At the time of its inception in 2015, the show that has garnered 11 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, Best Original Score and Best Book of a Musical, as well as a Pulitzer Prize for Drama, made a point of casting the story about a white immigrant making his mark on the United States with black, Latino and Asian actors. “Our cast looks like America looks now, and that’s certainly intentional,” Miranda told the New York Times back then. “It’s a way of pulling you into the story and allowing you to leave whatever cultural baggage you have about the Founding Fathers at the door.”
9. Hanna – Friday, July 3, Amazon Prime Video | Season Premiere
Amazon Prime VideoShe’s a trained assassin with elite skills instilled in her by the shadowy Utrax program. And as we come to learn in season two of Hanna, the title teen character played by Esme Creed-Miles has another arrow in her quiver.
“She’s part wolf, guys,” new cast member Dermot Mulroney says with a laugh. “Somebody has DNA-dosed her and... she seems like she can hear better. She’s definitely got an aggressive pack mentality that you have to respect. Yeah, she’s formidable, and that plays out so beautifully in the performance Esme turns in.”
In season two of the Amazon thriller, which begins streaming Friday, Hanna (Creed-Miles) now knows she is one of many young women who were trained by the Utrax program, and their development is about to reach the lethal second phase. Relocated to The Meadows, the trainees find their restrictions lifted as they get a glimpse of their new identity and life in the outside world.
Hanna risks her newfound freedom to rescue her friend Clara (Yasmin Monet Prince) from the clutches of Utrax and gets unlikely assistance from her former nemesis, ex-CIA agent Marissa Wiegler (Mireille Enos). As she delves deeper into the secretive world of The Meadows and meets others like her, she begins to question the program and where she truly belongs. Mulroney (Homecoming) joins the cast as John Carmichael, the Utrax CEO, who is none too pleased that one of his star pupils has jumped the fence and will do anything in his power, with the help of second-in-command Leo Garner (Anthony Welsh, Pure), to bring this feral killer back to the pack.
10. Regular Heroes – Friday, July 3, Amazon Prime Video | Season Finale
Amazon Prime VideoReflect on the essential frontline workers in your own life as you tune in for the season-one finale of this series, which celebrates the “regular heroes” of the world, from grocery clerks and first responders to nurses and teachers.