A ‘Wicked’ Concert, 9/11 Remembered in ‘One Day,’ ‘Evil’ Returns, Little League World Series
How better to mark the reopening of Broadway and other stages than with a concert version of one of its biggest hits. National Geographic’s One Day in America revisits the trauma of the 9/11 attacks over four nights. The cleverly creepy Evil returns from hiatus with a mostly silent episode set in a monastery. ABC and ESPN cover the Little League Baseball World Series during its Championship Weekend. A selective critical checklist of notable weekend TV:
WICKED in Concert
One of this century’s most “Popular” musicals, a reverse-angle Wizard of Oz origin story, stages a concert version of its most enduring songs to herald the reopening of Broadway and stages across the country this fall. Original stars Idina Menzel (who won a Tony as Elphaba) and Kristin Chenoweth (Glinda) are the hosts, with performances by Tony winners Gavin Creel, Cynthia Erivo, Ali Stroker and everyone’s favorite EGOT, Rita Moreno, plus Glee veterans Amber Riley and Alex Newell, rising stars Isaac Powell and Ariana DeBose and more. That’s enough talent to send you over the rainbow—but that’s a different musical. (SUNDAY)
9/11: One Day in America
As TV prepares to commemorate 20 years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks of 2001, this seven-hour (over four consecutive nights through Wednesday) docuseries may be the most comprehensive and personal. Produced in collaboration with the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, One Day (from Oscar-winning producers Dan Lindsay and T.J. Martin) relives the events of September 11 through chronological first-person accounts, from first responders, survivors and other witnesses to the events in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania. (SUNDAY)
Such a frighteningly clever show you never know whether to laugh or to scream, Evil returns from a monthlong hiatus with one of its best episodes of the second season, as Kristen (Katja Herbers), David (Mike Colter) and Ben (Aasif Mandvi) head to a Hudson Valley monastery where silence is enforced to investigate several possible miracles. In the almost entirely wordless hour, Kristen bonds with a young nun (Broadway’s Alexandra Socha) and gets tipsy on the monks’ locally produced wine, while priest-in-training David has more trouble than usual silencing his mind. Turn your phone off for this one. It’s best enjoyed with no distractions. (SUNDAY)
Little League Baseball World Series
The final teams face off on Championship Weekend, with South Dakota (and pitching phenom Gavin Weir) taking on Ohio, followed by Hawaii vs. Michigan at 3:30 pm/ET. The winners move on to the championship game Sunday at 3 pm/ET. (The second-place teams in each bracket play for third place in the consolation game Sunday at 10 am/ET on ESPN.) (SATURDAY)
Inside Weekend TV:
- Eden: Untamed Planet (Saturday, 8/7c, BBC America and AMC): The nature series’ season finale explores the “Last American Frontier” of Alaska, with its dense population of grizzly bears awaiting the yearly migration known as the salmon run. (A making-of special airs next Saturday.)
- Killer Cheer Mom (Saturday, 8/7c, Lifetime): The channel’s third annual “Fear the Cheer” cheesefest of cheerleader movie thrillers kicks off with Denise Richards in the title role of a stepmom who’ll go to any lengths to get her new stepdaughter (Courtney Falk) on the squad. Followed by Pom Poms and Payback (10/9c), about a devious cheerleading coach (Emily Killian) who sabotages her squad’s love lives. Two more cheerleader movies follow on Sunday: The Wrong Cheer Captain (8/7c) and Cheer for Your Life (10/9c).
- Design Star: Next Gen (Saturday, 9/8c, HGTV): Previously shown on discovery+, the competition series returns with designers decorating an individual house-like space each week to impress head judge Jonathan Adler, designer Lauren Makk and host Allison Holker. The winner gets $50,000 and their own HGTV show.
- Wellington Paranormal (Sunday, 9/8c, The CW): The hapless officers in this comedic horror-procedural spoof mistakenly unleash the ghost of a 1930s cop who wants to turn everything back to the “good ol’ days.” I know how he feels.
- The Walking Dead (Sunday, 9/8c, AMC): For those serious about their horror, the zombie thriller picks back up in the spooky subway, where Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) appears to have left Maggie (Lauren Cohan) for dead. Or he’d better hope he did. For the sake of the survivors at the Commonwealth compound, Eugene (Josh McDermitt) tries not to fall apart during interrogation.
- The Price of Freedom (Sunday 9/8c, CNN): Following its premiere at the Tribeca Festival and in theaters, CNN Films presents a documentary charting the controversial history of the National Rifle Association, and how the NRA evolved from a sports enthusiasts’ organization into an outsized political force shaping the debate over American gun policy.
- Uncensored (Sunday, 10/9c, TV One): The autobiographical series where celebrities get to speak their mind returns with someone who’s always worth a listen: Grey’s Anatomy and sitcom veteran Loretta Devine, who I’ll always remember as one of the original Dreamgirls.