Worth Watching: ‘Prodigal Son’ and ‘Deadwater Fell’ Finales, Mindy Kaling’s ‘Never Have I Ever’ on Netflix
A selective critical checklist of notable Monday TV:
Prodigal Son (9/8c, Fox): Good to the last drop — of blood, that is. The season’s most merrily deranged freshman series wraps its first season with the tantalizing mix of macabre humor and startling twists we’ve come to expect. Doth NYPD profiler Malcolm (Tom Payne) protest too much when he keeps insisting “I’m not my father”? Said father being notorious serial killer Martin “the Surgeon” Whitly (the gloriously hammy Michael Sheen), who finds himself in dangerous new prison surroundings when he gets on the bad side of corrupt billionaire Nicholas Endicott (Dermot Mulroney), a fiend who’s still getting away with malice in the outside world. But not if Malcolm, currently under suspicion for murder, and the rest of his family have anything to do with it.
Deadwater Fell (streaming on Acorn TV): The troubling truth comes out in the fourth and final chapter of the haunting British mystery series, which has been favorably compared to modern classics like Broadchurch. As Jess (Cush Jumbo) and husband Steve (Matthew McNulty) stew in guilt and anger for having missed the signs of trouble that might have saved their friend Kate (Anna Madeley) and her children, the question lingers whether surviving husband Tom (David Tennant) is victim or villain. The answer, as we’ve come to dread in this genre, is unsettling.
Never Have I Ever (streaming on Netflix): Having explored the parameters of adult rom-com in her long-running series The Mindy Project, Mindy Kaling presents a heartfelt coming-of-age comedy about a contemporary Indian-American teenager, Devi (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan), who’s looking for popularity and romance — even if it alienates her quirky friends and traditional family. Providing the narration from another world entirely: none other than tennis legend John McEnroe.
Inside Monday TV: Other shows wrapping their first seasons include AMC’s bizarre Dispatches from Elsewhere (10/9) and FX’s edgy parenting comedy, Breeders (10/9c), where mom (Daisy Haggard) and dad (Martin Freeman) deal with any family’s worst nightmare: a sick child, when Luke (George Wakeman) is admitted to a special pediatric unit and the stress of the vigil takes everyone to their breaking point… PBS’s Independent Lens offers a story of medical hopefulness in Jim Allison: Breakthrough (10/9c, check local listings at pbs.org), an inspiring profile of the immunologist from Texas whose studies of the immune system in fighting cancer earned him a 2018 Nobel Prize… HBO’s documentary news series Axios (11/10c) returns on a biweekly schedule, featuring interviews with New York’s high-profile Governor Andrew Cuomo and Walmart president Doug McMillon.