As Canada celebrates in the capital and Kim & Co. sign off for the season, we round up the top 10 shows to watch this week
1. Keeping Up with the Kardashians – Sunday, June 30, 6 p.m., 7 p.m. & 1 a.m., E! I Season Finale
Facebook/KUWTKThe 16th season comes to a close, capping off all those family squabbles and romantic psychodramas; this year, that’s included Kim more or less telling Kris that her friends are too old and it’s time to revamp the family Christmas party; Kourtney and Scott trying to be divorced but still take vacations together (along with Scott’s new woman) for the sake of the kids; and the most tabloid-baiting moment of all: Tristan (allegedly) cheating on Khloé with Kardashian bestie Jordyn Woods. Oh, and don’t even get us started on the Kanye of it all—even when his physical self wasn’t on-camera (when he was busy confabbing with Donald in the Oval Office, or what have you), his presence was always felt. That’s the power of his “strong” personality, we suppose, and indeed, the man they call Yeezy really couldn’t have picked a better family to marry into.
2. Celebrity Family Feud – Sunday, June 30, 8 p.m., City & ABC
CityThe Goldbergs and black-ish may have wrapped up their seasons, but if you’re missing those quirky TV families, this edition of the celebrity game show should fill the void. Yes, Jeff Garlin’s sitcom clan takes on Anthony Anderson’s tonight, with all winnings, naturally, going to a good cause.
3. Instinct – Sunday, June 30, 9 p.m., Global & CBS I Season Premiere
GlobalIf you’ve been wondering why Alan Cumming still has yet to reprise his fan-fave role as Eli Gold on Good Wife spinoff The Good Fight... well, the reason is returning to a TV screen near you!
The spritely Scottish actor’s crime thriller debuts season two this week, with 11 new episodes to carry us through the dregs of summer. NYPD consultant/all-around genius Dr. Dylan Reinhart returns newly reinstated to the force after being put on leave last season — just in time to rejoin partner Det. Lizzie Needham (Bojana Novakovic) for an inquiry into the death of a businesswoman who was devoting her resources to extending the human lifespan. In the midst of this case, Nebraska cop Ryan Stock (The Last Ship’s Travis Van Winkle) arrives in the Big Apple to fill our heroes in on the show’s presumable next Big Bad: the Sleeping Beauty Killer. As if that weren’t enough drama to juggle, Dylan and Andy also resume their adoption hunt.
Interestingly enough, this first episode of season two is titled “Stay Gold.” Now, we don’t think that’s meant as an epic troll on Good Fight fans, but if it is, we have to say: nicely played, Instinct writers!
4. The Loudest Voice – Sunday, June 30, 9 p.m., Crave1 I Series Premiere
Crave 1Not everyone associates the name Roger Ailes with greatness. The notorious American TV executive, whose career ended after he was accused by multiple female employees (chief among them Gretchen Carlson) of sexual harassment, is best known for creating Fox News and, by proxy, a culture largely responsible for the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States.
But whether or not you agreed with Ailes or his outlook on pretty much anything, take a step back and it is hard to deny that the man being examined in eight-episode miniseries The Loudest Voice was endlessly fascinating. “He’s a classic American success story,” says showrunner Alex Metcalf. “He comes from small-town Ohio. He talks his way into being an underling at a TV show, The Mike Douglas Show. Rises to the top by the time he’s 27 and uses that to step into political consulting and from there into broadcast journalism—all with this underlying sense of what people want.”
Personal drive and understanding of the medium aside, the convictions that drove Ailes, who died in 2017, are as timely today as they were two decades ago when he helped launch Fox News. “The personal story of Roger is really, to me, universal among certain men in a certain generation,” says Metcalf. “They grew up with the inherent power of being a white man in a white man’s world. Then, as demographics change and the world changes around them, they dream of this idealized vision of a lost America that they’re trying to put back together.”
5. What Just Happened??? With Fred Savage – Sunday, June 30, 9:30 p.m., Fox I Series Premiere
FoxIf you’ve never heard of the sci-fi series The Flare, you aren’t alone... but it’s discussed at length by Fred Savage, its “stars” and special guests on What Just Happened??! With Fred Savage. Think of what Talking Dead does in relation to The Walking Dead, and you’ll recognize the intention of this scripted parody.
“The Flare always ends in a moment of suspense or drama or excitement,” Savage explains, “and our show is called What Just Happened??! because The Flare leaves us just pulling our hair out because it’s so incredible. We’re not poking fun at anything or satirizing anything; we’re really embracing the idea of fandom and that thing that each one of us is incredibly passionate about.
“And we’re doing it positively,” continues the Wonder Years alum, who’s also the creator of this show and a prolific director of sitcoms like Modern Family and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. “I feel like now, in particular, is an interesting time to be a fan of something. There always seems to be some negative angle where you start to hate that thing you’re a fan of, and this is really a celebration of that side of fandom that is just joy and enthusiasm and support.”
6. Canada Day in the Capital – Monday, July 1, 8 p.m., CBC
CBCCBC is celebrating Canada’s 152nd birthday with coverage of the massive party taking place on Parliament Hill in Ottawa. This year’s performers include The Strumbellas, Quebec’s Coeur de pirate, Somali-Canadian rapper K’Naan, Alberta country singer Brett Kissel, William Prince of Peguis First Nation and more. As always, the celebrations will be wrapped up with a spectacular 15-minute firework show to light up the night sky.
7. The Code – Monday, July 1, 9 p.m., Global & CBS
Just as Abe and Harper believe they’re about to bring a Marine recruiter to justice for misconduct, the key witness refuses to testify, threatening to sink the entire case. But as we know, these two lawyers aren’t the type to raise the white flag.
8. Divorce – Monday, July 1, 9 p.m., HBO Canada I Season Premiere
HBOWhen Divorce debuted on HBO in October 2016, the premise of the series revolved around Frances (Sarah Jessica Parker) having an affair and being caught by her husband, Robert (Thomas Haden Church), who then files for divorce. Given that Frances was the one who first stepped outside of the marriage to find happiness, you might’ve expected her to be pleased with this development, but that’s not exactly how things played out. As Parker explained in an interview on the HBO website last year, “The first season is about the battle of divorce; we always wanted [season two] to be the season of hope.” Funnily enough, after that season of hope wrapped up, viewers had to spend six whole months hoping for the series to be picked up for a third season. Thankfully, it was, if only for six episodes. Still, at least it’s back, even if Frances asks of her friends in the season-three trailer, “Things really haven’t turned out the way they were supposed to, have they?”
9. The Amazing Race Canada – Tuesday, July 2, 9 p.m., CTV I Season Premiere
CTVIf we’re lucky, as we reflect back on our lives, we find we’re more or less satisfied with the choices we’ve made and where they led us. Still, everyone has a few things they’d like a mulligan on—a chance to go back and do it right this time. Such opportunities rarely arise in real life, but reality TV is another story. Months ago, CTV offered fans the chance to vote on one of three teams from seasons past to earn a second birth in the Amazing Race. The contenders were Jet and Dave, best pals from season one; Brent and Sean, brothers from season three; and Frankie and Amy, mother and daughter from season four. And the winners were... Jet and Dave! (Break for raucous applause.)
10. Stranger Things – Thursday, July 4, Netflix I Season Premiere
NetflixHalf a year after closing the gates to the hells-cape beneath their town and shaking off the terrors at the Middle School Snow Ball, we return to our favourite Hawkins, Indiana teens living their best lives. The sun is shining, summer fun is in full force and a Fourth of July celebration is imminent. What could possibly go wrong?
“Something happens... like in every season of Stranger Things,” teases Vancouver-born actor Finn Wolfhard.
And although watching Mike (Wolfhard), Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), Will (Noah Schnapp), Max (Sadie Sink) and their super-powered psychic pal Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) live it up at the local mall for eight episodes would have been enjoyment of a different kind, that is not what’s in the cards for the series that reads like a love letter to 1980s horror flicks.