A 'Get Shorty' Showdown, A Fresh Start for Issa on 'Insecure,' 'Fear' Infects Al
A critical checklist of notable weekend TV:
Get Shorty (Sunday, 9/8c, Epix): High on the list of best shows you’re probably not watching is this terrific Hollywood satire/crime dramedy inspired by Elmore Leonard. (It’s especially highly recommended to those who may be wishing Better Call Saul would just get on with it already.) Shorty’s second season reaches its midpoint with one of its best episodes, a showcase for Ray Romano as hack producer-turned-informant Rick, whose double-dealing has been discovered by Miles (Chris O’Dowd) and Louis (Sean Bridgers) — and they’re none too pleased. The ensuing interrogation would be hair-raising if Rick’s hair weren’t already standing on end. The dilemma: what to do with this traitor and how to contain the fallout with their scary mob boss Amara (Lidio Porto) — who happens to be Rick’s lover. Additional incentive to watch: Felicity Huffman having a ball as a quirkily chipper FBI Agent who’s pulling many of the strings here. It’s great to see her enjoying herself after so much suffering on several seasons of American Crime.
Insecure (Sunday, 10:30/9:30c, HBO): In a pivotal episode of this Emmy-nominated comedy, Issa (Issa Rae) sees a chance for a fresh start as she sets up in her new apartment, where she’s taken a gig as property manager — apparently she doesn’t watch Mom — and reevaluates her future at the We Got Y’all workplace. A chance encounter with a recent acquaintance, and a visit to the hood where she grew up, also has her rethinking her options. Molly (Yvonne Orji) seeks respite from her own job dissatisfaction by venting to her therapist. (Maybe she should try Issa’s mirror routine. It would be cheaper.)
Fear the Walking Dead (Sunday, 9/8c, AMC): New blood, not all of it yet spilled, has done wonders for the zombie-apocalypse spinoff this season. Among the stronger cast additions: Lost’s Maggie Grace as Al (short for Althea), the loner videographer, and Jenna Elfman as June (previously known as “Naomi” or “Laura”). In an episode directed by Colman Domingo (Strand), these survivors are stranded on their own and trying to reconnect in the wake of the hurricane. Naturally, there are obstacles, including Al’s van being stolen and her succumbing to a dangerous fever. In a separate subplot, Morgan (Lennie James) tries to make contact with his lost friends, who may or may not be pleased to meet his new and not especially trustworthy traveling companions, introduced last week (Mo Collins, Daryl Mitchell and 12 Monkeys’ Aaron Stanford). And what’s up with Tonya Pinkins’ apparent madwoman? Looks like we’ll be seeing more of her as well.
Inside Weekend TV: CBS’s Pink Collar Crimes (Saturday, 8/7c) looks at the dark side of extreme couponing, revisiting the cast of Phoenix housewife Robin Ramirez, who orchestrated the largest fake-coupon scam in U.S. history… A streaming treat, courtesy of HBO Asia, Miss Sherlock is a gender-switched twist on the Arthur Conan Doyle classic. The eight-part series, co-produced with Hulu in Japan, introduces a female Sherlock (Yuko Takeuchi), born in Britain, who moves to Japan, where she meets Dr. Wato Tachibana (Shihori Kanjiya), a surgeon newly returned from a mission in Syria. One thing remains constant in this Sherlock-Watson dynamic: They’re a whiz at solving bizarre crimes. The series will be available on the HBO GO and HBO NOW platforms as well as On Demand… TV One’s original film, Dinner For Two (Sunday, 7/6c), stars Tristan “Mack” Wilds (The Wire) as Chris, a man struggling to accept the end of his romantic relationship with Rose (Nashville’s Chaley Rose), for whom he prepares one last favorite meal.