CBS’ hit comedy Ghosts introduces a new spirit when Hetty’s philandering husband emerges from a secret vault. Freeform’s Single Drunk Female follows a 20something on the rocky road to recovery. ABC’s Women of the Movement historical docudrama reaches its inspiring conclusion. Sitcom veterans Ed Helms and Randall Park interpret true stories with whimsical recreations.
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“I love it when the mythology gets expanded,” gushes nerd supreme Jay (Utkarsh Ambudkar) when yet another spirit enters the picture in the hilarious new hit comedy (based on an equally delightful British series, currently streaming on HBO Max). This ghost is the obnoxious robber baron and philanderer Elias Woodstone (Veep’s mustache-twirling Matt Walsh), emerging from a long-hidden vault to the chagrin of his wife, Hetty (the fabulously haughty Rebecca Wisocky). Her high dudgeon includes the phrase “syphilitic reprobate,” which Elias takes as a compliment as he shares his lustful appetite with any “living” he mischievously encounters. The final twist generates some of the biggest laughs yet among this first-rate ensemble.
“I miss being a drunk. There was a lot less accountability,” moans barely recovering alcoholic Samantha Fink (a droll Sofia Black-D’Elia) in this raw yet wry character study of a 28-year-old who learns the hard way how to be defined by something other than her booze intake. The inaugural season follows Sam over her first year of a rocky, often humiliating but occasionally affirming probationary period after she moves from New York back to Boston to live with her neurotic, not-always-supportive mom, Carol (a snappish, tart and very funny Ally Sheedy).
In the final night of the historical docudrama about civil-rights pioneer Mamie Till-Mobley (Adrienne Warren), the grieving mother testifies in court during the murder trial of her slain son Emmett in front of a stacked white jury. While the verdict feels pre-ordained (and the dramatization is none too subtle), the impact of injustice will resonate far beyond the steamy Mississippi courtroom as 14-year-old Emmett Till’s murder becomes a watchcry for a national movement.
Sitcom veterans Ed Helms (The Office, Rutherford Falls) and Randall Park (Fresh off the Boat) host this endearing reality/comedy hybrid that finds a new way to tell unfamiliar true stories. Welcoming ordinary folks to spin their remarkable tales—one recalls sneaking into the 1979 Super Bowl—the hosts cheer them on while a who’s-who of comic talent bring these yarns to life in scripted re-enactments. (The guest list includes Terry Bradshaw, Adam Pally, Rob Riggle, the aforementioned Matt Walsh, Terry Crews, Tichina Arnold, Superstore’s Lauren Ash and more.)
More streaming premieres on a typically busy Thursday:
- La Fortuna (streaming on AMC+): Stanley Tucci headlines a six-part international thriller about modern-day piracy. He’s Captain Frank Wild, an adventurer who plunders a treasure from inside a sunken frigate, triggering a global incident as a young Spanish diplomat (Alvaro Mel) and an American lawyer (The Wire’s Clarke Peters) fight to reveal to whom this fortune truly belongs.
- Supernatural Academy (streaming on Peacock): A young-adult animated fantasy based on Jaymin Eve’s best-selling series reunites twin teenage sisters—one raised in the supernatural world, the other raised among humans and unaware of her true nature—at the title Academy, where they’ll join forces despite their differences to save the world.
- Total Control (streaming on Sundance Now): A second season of the Australian political drama finds Indigenous senator Alex Irving (Deborah Mallman) fighting for her future as she runs for office as an Independent, battling the former Prime Minister (Rachel Griffiths) who betrayed her.
- The Royal Treatment (streaming on Netflix): The streaming giant takes a leap into Lifetime/Hallmark territory with a romcom about a New York hairdresser (Laura Marano) who lands a gig styling a royal wedding whose prince charming (Mena Massoud) is marrying for duty rather than love. Before you can say “a little off the sides,” Prince Thomas has made an uncommonly good love connection.
- The Marfa Tapes (streaming on Paramount+): Go on location to Marfa, Texas (also the site of the movie classic Giant) with Miranda Lambert, Jack Ingram and Jon Randall for the making of their Grammy-nominated 2021 album, much of it recorded outdoors.
- Moses Storm: Trash White (streaming on HBO Max): Conan O’Brien executive produces the first solo stand-up special from Moses Storm, reflecting with raw humor and honesty on his impoverished childhood.
Inside Thursday TV:
- Warped! (7:30/6:30c, Nickelodeon): A live-action buddy comedy pairs Milo (Anton Starkman), No. 1 geek employee at a strip-mall comic-book shop, with quirky new hire Ruby (Kate Godfrey) as they brainstorm what they hope will be the world’s greatest graphic novel.
- Young Sheldon (8/7c, CBS): On a similar theme, the child genius and lifelong Star Trek fan (Iain Armitage) gets his Mr. Spock on when he attends his first comic-book convention.
- The Blacklist (8/7c, NBC): This week’s flashback focuses on Dembe (Hisham Tawfiq), looking back at what brought him into the FBI fold two years earlier.
- Walker (8/7c, The CW): Texas Ranger Walker (Jared Padalecki) assumes the position of interim Captain after Capt. James (Coby Bell) is shot and left in critical condition.
- Full Frontal with Samantha Bee (10/9c, TBS): The outrageously outspoken comedian is back for a seventh season of pungent commentary.
- Bull (10/9c, CBS): Having just announced this will be its final season, the legal drama pits Bull (Michael Weatherly) against former colleague Marissa (Geneva Carr) in court, their first such encounter since she left his firm.