My Favorite Things: Summer Edition

Every show, David and I warm up by talking about something—often genre related—that we find exciting that week. In a recent show, David mentioned the theme of endings within franchises… Game of Thrones, The Avengers, Star Wars etc.

I just sat down and thumbed through the latest EW magazine and thought, well… with endings, there are always new beginnings. And though any of the following could be used for our opening ice-breakers (and may still), some of them are not genre related… so, I decided to compile and share them with you… here.

If you’re our age, you likely remember when summer was a dead end, no-man’s-land, filled with reruns and original programming not fit for even Saturday mornings—remember Battle of the Network StarsShields and YarnellThat’s Incredible? Well… with competition and streaming services continuously upping their game, that’s not the case anymore.

The following are some new and returning shows that I’m hyped about:

  1. Baskets—I’ve been watching this brilliantly dry series for its entire run and the warped humor is perfectly in tune with my psyche. Zach Galifianakis is a middle-aged son who returns home from a failing clown career to the small town inhabited by his mother and twin brother. His mother, portrayed by comic Louie Anderson, is the heart of this show and I encourage you to watch it, if anything, for his multiple Emmy-award winning performances.
  2. Fear the Walking Dead—by season three I was ready to write this show off. Almost everything about it was terrible. But somewhere in that mid-season, the tables turned and my interest piqued. Now, I enjoy it more than The Walking Dead. The characters they’ve added are fully-fleshed, and the STORY WENT SMALL… which, as you’ve heard me preach on the show, is much more interesting than a cast of hundreds—especially when battling zombies.
  3. Pose—This will be the second season of the Ryan Murphy-produced show inspired by New York’s late 1980s Underground ball culture that went on to influence artists a many—including Madonna and RuPaul. The first season was a little clunky, and a little soapy… but, man, the cast—hosting the largest ensemble of transgender actors so far in a single series, AND the incomparable Billy Porter. This was appointment TV for Dennis and I. Rarely do I say that these days.
  4. NOS4A2—This could suck. I have no idea because it is a new miniseries starring Zachary Quinto inspired by the novel from Joe Hill (Stephen King’s son). I liked the book a lot, so I have high hopes. And King has seen it and is raving… but, gentle readers, we all know that Mr. King has pushed his fair share of schlock. And it is his son, so why wouldn’t he? Time will tell… and I’m waiting with my fingers crossed.
  5. Deadwood: The Movie—I was heartbroken when this series ended… but I didn’t love it from the beginning. When I first watched it, I found myself not comprehending, constantly rewinding, as if the actors were speaking in a foreign language. Then it hit me… this is Shakespeare in the west. Not exactly, but the writers managed to create a new type of English vernacular that, once I got familiar with, was every bit as captivating as its visuals. I am very much looking forward to returning to Deadwood (even if it is only one HBO movie).
  6. Armistead Maupin’s Tales of the City—I saved the best for last. Armistead Maupin is an American treasure and I would easily put him in the top 10 of all American writers. His words live on in this continuation of beloved characters from the span of nine novels in the series—and featuring not only the return of spectacular Olympia Dukakis as mother-of-us-all, Anna Madrigal… but also Laura Linney (as Mary Ann) and other beloved cast members from productions (PBS and Showtime) past. It all started in 1970’s San Francisco, and now we’re present day. I cannot wait to immerse myself in their drama once more. THANK YOU, NETFLIX… for this alone, I will be eternally grateful.

And there you have it… some of the shows that I am truly excited about this summer. I hope that some of you join me in watching them. Let me know what you think. I’d love to hear. Also, I’m curious to hear what you’re excited about. What’s headed down tube this summer that you eagerly anticipating?


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