TV Talk

Critics Weigh In on Succession, Barry & More of the Biggest Series Finales of the Year

Ted Lasso’s season 3 finale walked like a series finale and talked like a series finale, but was it one? Plus, the Black Mirror season 6 trailer and more top TV and streaming news.

by | June 2, 2023 | Comments

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We rank the finales of Succession, Barry, and Ted Lasso, according to Tomatometer scores. Plus, Kim Cattrall will reprise her Sex and the City character on And Just Like That … season 2, John le Carré’s The Constant Gardener will get the TV series treatment, the official trailer for season 6 of Black Mirror finally dropped, and free Only Murders in the Building bagels hit Los Angeles.


Succession, Barry, Ted Lasso & More of the Week’s Finales Ranked

Jóhannes Haukur Jóhannesson, Alexander Skarsgård, Nicholas Braun, Matthew Macfadyen in the Succession series finale

Jóhannes Haukur Jóhannesson, Alexander Skarsgård, Nicholas Braun, and Matthew Macfadyen in the Succession series finale (Photo by HBO)

We saw some epic TV and streaming finales this past week. Several high-profile shows came to a definitive end — Succession, Barry, and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel each went out with a satisfying bang — while others closed out their most recent seasons — Yellowjackets ended its sophomore run with a 70% score on its finale, and FX’s Dave enlisted the help of Brad Pitt for its final season 3 episode. And Apple TV+’s soccer-comedy darling Ted Lasso said “So Long, Farewell” with a 67% finale score and lingering questions about its small-screen future.

Here’s a ranking of how the past week’s big series finales fared by their Tomatometer scores:

Matthew Macfadyen and Sarah Snook in the Succession season finale

Matthew Macfadyen and Sarah Snook in the Succession series finale (Photo by HBO)

100% Succession, Season 4, Episode 10: "With Open Eyes"

The series finale achieved a perfect score on the Tomatometer with 34 reviews, which continues the 100%-score run of finales following season 2’s “This Is Not for Tears” and season 3’s “All the Bells Say.”

Each of the series’ four seasons is Certified Fresh. Season 1 has an 89% score, while seasons 2–4 all have 97% scores, which is quite a coincidence, considering that Succession is a series with enough episode-level reviews to generate episodic scores, which impact the season-level score.

Shirly Yi of The Atlantic wrote of the series finale: “An equal parts hilarious, repulsive, and sensational end to one of the most enthralling series of our era.”

(Photo by Philippe Antonello/Prime Video)

100% The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Season 5, Episode 9: "Four Minutes"

Prime Video’s prestige dramedy series wrapped up its five-season run with a perfect 100% score for its finale on five total reviews. The season 4 finale, “How Do You Get to Carnegie Hall,” also received a perfect score on five reviews.

Each of the show’s five seasons is Certified Fresh with season 1 scoring 94%, season 2 at 92%, season 3 at 79%, season 4 at 92%, and season 5 at 97%.

“It was a super-sized finale with plenty of excitement, heartbreaking moments, and, as always, laughs,” wrote Mary Littlejohn of TV Fanatic.

(Photo by HBO)

86% Barry, Season 4, Episode 8: "Wow"

Bill Hader’s Emmy-winning dark comedy met its bloody end on Sunday. With 11 total reviews, the program’s final episode, season 4’s eighth entitled “Wow,” garnered a Certified Fresh 82% score on the Tomatometer. By comparison, the season 3 finale, “Starting Now” received a 100% score with eight reviews submitted.

The show’s seasons have the following Certified Fresh scores: season 1 at 98%, season 2 at 100%, season 3 at 99%, and season 4 at 95%.

“There is so much greatness in the finale, just as there has been in Barry as a whole, but it’s an oddly muted way to go out,” wrote Alan Sepinwall of Rolling Stone.

(Photo by Apple TV+)

73% Ted Lasso, Season 3, Episode 12: "So Long, Farewell"

Is this the end of Ted Lasso or could there be a spin-off (or two) coming? These are the questions still lingering after the season 3 finale (and possible series finale) premiered on Wednesday. As of the publishing date of this article, the episode received a 67% score on the Tomatometer on 12 reviews.

All seasons of the series are Certified Fresh with season 1 garnering a 92% score, season 2 boasting a 98% score, and season 3 landing on 79%.

“It’s a weird ending for Ted, to say the least,” Fletcher Peters of The Daily Beast wrote.

Related: 5 Shows To Watch Next If You Love Ted Lasso

Trailers: Black Mirror Season 6 Gives Netflix the Satire Treatment

In the highly-anticipated official trailer for Black Mirror season 6, Netflix gets a taste of its own medicine.

Joan Is Awful, which is one of the new episodes featured in the dystopian anthology series, featured a seemingly average woman (played by Schitt’s Creek alum Annie Murphy) who happens upon a prestige series based on her life on Streamberry, a fictional streaming service that looks an awful lot like Netflix. Needless to say, in true Black Mirror fashion, this discovery disrupts her interpretation of reality. Salma Hayek Pinault plays her in the episode.

Joining Hayek Pinault and Murphy in the new season is a stacked list of stars, including Aaron Paul, Rory Culkin, Josh Hartnett, Kate Mara, Michael Cera, Anjana Vasan, Auden Thornton, Ben Barnes, Clara Rugaard, Daniel Portman, Danny Ramirez, Himesh Patel, John Hannah, Monica Dolan, Myha’la Herrold, Paapa Essiedu, Rob Delaney, Samuel Blenkin, and Zazie Beetz.

It’s been roughly four years since season 5 of creator Charlie Brooker’s series premiered. And according to the co-showrunner, these new Black Mirror episodes will surprise viewers and disrupt expectations.

“Partly as a challenge, and partly to keep things fresh for both me and the viewer, I began this season by deliberately upending some of my own core assumptions about what to expect,” Brooker told Tudum. “Consequently, this time, alongside some of the more familiar Black Mirror tropes we’ve also got a few new elements, including some I’ve previously sworn blind the show would never do, to stretch the parameters of what ‘a Black Mirror episode’ even is. The stories are all still tonally Black Mirror through-and-through — but with some crazy swings and more variety than ever before.”

Black Mirror season 6 premieres on June 15 on Netflix.

More trailers this week: Timothy Olyphant returns as U.S. Marshal Raylan Givens in Justified: City Primeval, HBO serves up a new look at The Idol, plus trailers for Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan season 4, The Righteous Gemstones season 3, and Prime Video series premiere I’m A Virgo. For more of the latest TV and streaming trailers, visit the Rotten Tomatoes TV YouTube channel.

Read also: The Wrath of Cannes: Critics Batter The Idol, Starring Lily-Rose Depp and Abel ‘The Weeknd’ Tesfaye

Kim Cattrall To Reprise Sex and the City Role in And Just Like That … Season 2

Kim Cattrall will appear in And Just Like That … as her Sex and the City character Samantha Jones. For fans unfamiliar with the behind-the-scenes drama that has played out between Cattrall and her former castmates over the past decade, but for those in the know, it’s a shocker.

As originally reported by Variety, and confirmed on Instagram by Cattrall herself, the actress will appear in a brief one-off cameo that will feature Samantha speaking with Carrie (Parker) over the phone in the new season’s finale episode (which is set to air in August). In the spin-off’s first season, her absence was explained by saying Samantha moved to London and grew distant from her friends after drama developed between her and Carrie.

If not for the involvement of Casey Bloys, HBO’s President of Programming, who personally requested Cattrall’s involvement in the new season, Samantha’s story may have continued to exist completely off-screen.

And Just Like That … returns Thursday, June 22 on Max.

John le Carré’s The Constant Gardener To Be Adapted for TV

THE CONSTANT GARDENER, Rachel Weisz, Ralph Fiennes

Rachel Weisz and Ralph Fiennes in The Constant Gardener (Photo by Focus Features/Courtesy of the Everett Collection)

It’s been nearly two decades since the Oscar-winning movie starring Rachel Weisz and Ralph Fiennes hit the big screen, and now John le Carré’s celebrated novel The Constant Gardener is getting a limited TV series. According to an exclusive report from Deadline, the adaptation will be written by Lydia Adetunji (His Dark Materials) and is said to be a contemporary re-telling set in a “post-pandemic context.”

The story of The Constant Gardener centers on Justin Quayle (played by Fiennes in the 2005 movie), a British diplomat and dedicated gardener who develops a romantic relationship with Tessa (Weisz received a Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her performance), an Amnesty International activist. Their relationship sparks an expansive international drama-filled journey featuring murder and government espionage amid the backdrop of Kenya and Europe.

The studio behind the adaptation is The Ink Factory, which is also adapting le Carré’s A Most Wanted Man for the big screen and working on a second season of The Night Manager, which stars Tom Hiddleston and is also based on the author’s work.

Co-CEOs Simon Cornwell and Stephen Cornwell said in a statement: “It’s thrilling to be reinterpreting The Constant Gardener in a contemporary, post-pandemic context, and to be rooting the story in an authentic, modern Kenya with all of its richness, politics and energy. Lydia’s bold, exciting but also lyrical approach to the adaptation tells a story that keeps the audience on the edge of its seat – intensely relevant in the modern world, and simply beautiful.”

No cast or network has been announced yet for the project.

Only Murders in the Building + Yeastie Boys = Free Bagels

Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez in Only Murders In The Building season 2

(Photo by Hulu)

As part of Only Murders in the Building‘s awards campaign, Los Angeles bagel shop The Yeastie Boys will be offering fans free bagels to fans this weekend. Three menu items have been renamed (temporarily) after the show’s lead characters Charles (Steve Martin), Oliver (Martin Short), and Mabel (Selena Gomez).

“Bagel & Schmear” will be known as “The Classic Charles” (any hand-rolled bagel and house-made schmear), “Game Over” has changed to “Oliver’s Critically Acclaimed, SMASH HIT, Broadway Masterpiece” (scrambled egg, bacon, tomato, house-made cheddar jalapeno schmear on a hand rolled cheddar bagel); and “PB&J” becomes “Caught Red-Handed Mabel” (peanut butter and jam on a blueberry bagel). Free drip coffee will also be offered.

The Yeastie Boys food truck will be “fully skinned with Only Murders in the Building art,” with coffee sleeves and bagel wrapping also branded for the show. Select customers will be get a bonus promo vinyl single for “Angel in Flip-Flops,” the song written and performed by Martin’s character Charles in the show.

The short-lived promotion will take place on Saturday, June 3  and Saturday, June 10 at Alfred Coffee, located at 8428 Melrose Place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. On Sunday, June 4 and Sunday, June 11, these killer bagel-and-coffee offerings can also be found from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Studio City Farmers Market at 2052 Ventura Place.

Sounds like great breakfast fuel to power the striking writers.

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