From a new Commander in Chief to a pretty woman's TV debut, we round up our top 10 shows to watch this week
1. Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj — Sunday, October 28, Netflix | Series Premiere
Netflix is taking another shot at politically charged comedy with a new offering from comedian Hasan Minhaj. No stranger to viewers of The Daily Show, Minhaj served as a correspondent from 2014 to this past August—and was, in fact, the last hire made by former host Jon Stewart before he turned the reins over to Trevor Noah.
2. Ray Donovan — Sunday, October 28, 8 p.m., TMN1 | Season Premiere
Susan Sarandon concedes she could have had more to do on her debut season of Ray Donovan. Now, she’s getting her chance. The Dead Man Walking Oscar winner resumes her role as movie-studio chief Samantha “Sam” Winslow, upped from a recurring guest star to series regular in season six. Sam continues to involve titular “fixer” Ray (Liev Schreiber) in her intentions as the action relocates from Los Angeles to New York, where Ray is a fish out of water (literally, based on last season’s finale). Fellow Academy Award-recipient Jon Voight also returns as Ray’s ever-problematic father Mickey.
3. The Resident — Monday, October 29, 8 p.m., CTV & Fox
Even at the best of times, horrors abound in the emergency room, but Halloween takes things to a whole new level. Tonight, Conrad diagnoses a woman with extreme night terrors, Bell finds “creative” uses for his new assistant and Dev faces his first All Hallow’s Eve at Chastain Park Memorial.
4. A Very Wicked Halloween — Monday, October 29, 10:01 p.m., ABC
Every once in a while, a Broadway production manages to break out of its theatrical niche and become the obsession of a much larger pop-cultural audience. The show of the moment, of course, is Hamilton. But 15 years ago, it was a quirky, heartfelt Wizard of Oz reimagining known as Wicked, the original run of which was headlined by the great Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth.
5. The Purge — Tuesday, October 30, Amazon Prime Video
Imagine a world with virtually no crime, where unemployment is at an all-time low. Sounds pretty great, no? What’s the catch, you ask? Well, one night every year, all crime—including murder—is not only perfectly legal but actively encouraged. By now, we all know the premise of the wildly popular Purge films—modern cinema’s answer to the trashy delights of 1970s grindhouse flicks. But since early September, franchise mastermind James DeMonaco and his team have been delving deeper than ever before into their themes of race, class and human nature with a 10-part series following an array of men and women from all stations of society during one blood-soaked Purge Night. Airing on USA Network in the States, the show has also been unrolling weekly on streaming service Amazon Prime Video in Canada.
6. The Conners — Tuesday, October 30, 8 p.m., CTV & ABC
Mark’s Halloween costume gets banned from school, inciting an argument between grandpa Dan and mom Darlene. Meanwhile, Jackie brings a new friend (guest star Steve Zahn) to the Conner clan’s annual Halloween party.
7. In the Long Run — Tuesday, October 30, 9:30 p.m., CBC | Series Premiere
Idris Elba (Luther) is star and creator of this sitcom based on his childhood growing up in inner-city London during the Thatcher-era ’80s. Elba plays Walter (a character patterned on his father), who immigrated to England from Sierra Leone more than a decade earlier. Their quiet life is turned upside down, however, when Walter’s brother, Valentine (Jimmy Akingbola) moves in with them, his unbridled exuberance and lust for life seeping into their own humdrum lives.
8. Tell Me a Story — Wednesday, October 31, CBS All Access
Kevin Williamson has shown a knack for subverting the tropes of a well-worn genre—this is the guy who penned Scream, after all. With his latest TV effort, the writer-producer is taking full advantage of the freedoms offered by a streaming service to again craft something that defies expectation. Based on a popular Mexican series, Tell Me a Story sets out to retell classic fairytales with a twist. The 10-episode first season intertwines the stories of Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Little Pigs and Hansel and Gretel, but moves the characters to the modern-day woods of New York City, where “love, loss, greed, revenge and murder” abound.
These revamped Hansels, Gretels, pigs and wolves are played by the likes of Kim Cattrall (Sex and the City), Billy Magnussen (Into the Woods), Dania Ramirez (Devious Maids), Sam Jaeger (Parenthood), James Wolk (Mad Men), Dorian Missick (Southland) and Paul Wesley (The Vampire Diaries).
9. Homecoming — Friday, November 2, Amazon Prime Video | Series Premiere
Julia Roberts may be making her debut as a TV-series regular in the psychological thriller Homecoming, but ask the actress how she feels about her transition to the small screen and she’ll quickly challenge your way of thinking. “I don’t know,” she quips. “My television is very big.”
The lines may have been continuously blurring between film and TV for the past few years, but screen size aside, Roberts does cop to Homecoming, a 10-episode series based on the popular 2016 podcast, being new territory for her—just not from a “film vs. TV” perspective. “It’s called the 11-page oner,” she reveals.
10. House of Cards — Friday, November 2, Netflix | Series Premiere
At the end of last season’s finale of House of Cards, newly minted president Claire Underwood refused a call from her husband, turned to the camera and proclaimed “My turn.” Now, as the sixth and final season of the Netflix drama gets underway, we find out exactly what that means.
Opening Friday, with the award-winning drama’s final eight episodes, the new instalment picks up a year after the events of last season, with Claire (Robin Wright) firmly entrenched in the Oval Office and her husband, former president Frank Underwood, dead and buried next to his father in South Carolina.