Worth Watching: Back Home on ‘grown-ish,’ ‘Handmaid’s Tale,’ ‘Queen Sugar’
A selective critical checklist of notable Wednesday TV:
grown-ish (8/7c, Freeform): There’s no place like home, especially if you’re living in a spinoff. So who can blame Zoey (Yara Shahidi) for bringing her college BFFs home to the Johnson digs in Sherman Oaks for a weekend of R&R in the form of self-care and detoxing. However — there’s always a however — Zoey’s idea of relaxation may not track with what her friends really need. Marcus Scribner (Junior) makes a guest appearance.
The Handmaid’s Tale (streaming on Hulu): While the Waterfords continue to make connections in Washington, D.C., where they impress the high and mighty with an impressive tango, June (Elisabeth Moss) is back home working her own network of contacts, desperate to get another glimpse of daughter Hannah and arrange her rescue. She even gets her emotionally fragile new mistress, Eleanor Lawrence (the excellent Julie Dretzin), in on the action. In an equally tense subplot on the other side of the border in Canada, Emily (Alexis Bledel) answers for the crimes she committed while in Gilead, and ends up embroiled in the diplomatic crisis involving baby Nichole when she participates in a protest with Moira (Samira Wiley). No one has it easy in this grim drama.
Queen Sugar (10/9c, OWN): Nova (Rutina Wesley) is still estranged from her family, and it’s no wonder, as she reveals a dark family secret at her book launch. In possibly more uplifting news, Charley (Dawn-Lyen Gardner) and Romero (Walter Perez) start their makeshift clinic.
Inside Wednesday TV: The night before July 4 is mostly quiet on TV, but there’s always Netflix, which offers The Last Czars, a six-episode account of Czar Nicholas II and his ill-fated family, mixing dramatic scenes with documentary commentary. It doesn’t look very promising, but can it be any worse than Amazon Prime Video’s pretentious The Romanoffs?… CBS presents back-to-back true-crime stories in a double edition of NCIS: The Cases They Can’t Forget (9/8c), including the story of Samira Watkins, a single mother whose body washed up in a duffel bag near the entrance of the Pensacola (Fla.) Naval Air Station… One of the summer’s few scripted network originals, NBC’s The Inbetween (10/9c), finds psychic Cassie (Harriet Dyer) helping a woman solve her own death, while Tom (Paul Blackthorne) and Damien (Justin Cornwell) pursue a killer targeting high-schoolers