If the April showers (and the general state of the world) have got you down, don’t forget that there’s always new friends to be made on the small and streaming screen. This month sees the returns of some old favorites after coronavirus-related production delays, along with final outings for two fan-favorites and sophomore efforts from the new shows on the block. Now get to binging!


What it is: Elliot Stabler is back! Law & Order: Organized Crime kicked off its highly anticipated premiere with a two-hour crossover event with Law & Order: SVU. The new series sees Stabler’s (Christopher Meloni) return to the NYPD after a life-altering personal loss. But just as the character has changed in the last 10 years, so, too, has the world he’s reentering, and he must learn to lead this new elite task force anew. Mariska Hargitay helps ring in the new series as SVU’s hero (and Stabler’s ex-partner) Olivia Benson, who’s now captain of New York City’s Special Victims Unit.

Why you should watch it: For this one, it should come as no surprise we’re recommending you binge the original Law & Order: SVU to see the beloved Benson and Stabler in action. Meloni and his Stabler exited the series after 12 seasons in 2011 after the character shot and killed a rape victim’s daughter when she came armed and firing into the precinct; behind the scenes, dissatisfaction with contract negotiations reportedly also played a role in his offscreen departure. But that doesn’t taint the adrenaline and joy his episodes inspire today. To know the Stabler that you see in Organized Crime, you have to learn where he came from. Law & Order: Organized Crime premiered April 1 on NBC (starting with a crossover with SVU in episode “Return of the Prodigal Son” followed by Organized Crime episode “What Happens in Puglia“). New episodes air at 9 p.m. on Thursdays.

Where to watch: Amazon, FandangoNOW, Google Play, HuluMicrosoft, Peacock, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 200 hours (for the first 12 seasons)


What it is: It’s a rags-to-riches tale as old as time. Teresa Mendoza (Alice Braga) is forced to flee Mexico after her drug cartel boyfriend is murdered and the drug ring responsible for his death comes after her. After crossing the border to the United States, she settles down in Dallas, Texas, and slowly builds a drug smuggling empire of her own.

Why you should watch it: Centered by a dedicated and emotionally rigorous performance from Braga, creators M.A. Fortin and Joshua John Miller’s adaptation of the popular telenovela La Reina del Sur has had us hooked for four seasons and counting. Catch up before its fifth and final season premieres April 7 on USA Network.

Where to watch: AmazonFandangoNOWGoogle PlayMicrosoft, NetflixVudu

Commitment: Approx. 35.5 hours (for the first four seasons)


What it is: Following Nicholas (comedian and actor Josh Thomas), a gay 20-something who’s forced to care for his two teen sisters after their single father’s death, Everything’s Gonna Be Okay finds the sweet spot between fish-out-of-water humor and coming-of-age pathos.

Why you should watch it: Those familiar with Australian creator, showrunner, and star Thomas’ Please Like Me will have plenty to love about Everything’s Gonna Be Okay, a second, more mainstream showcase of his bristling-but-humane humor and unexpected heart. That the charming dramedy is also a showcase for diverse narratives and themes bolstered by scene-stealer Kayla Cromer (who herself is on the autism spectrum) just adds to its impact. Season 2 premieres April 8 on Freeform.

Where to watch: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, Hulu, MicrosoftVudu

Commitment: Approx. 5 hours (for the first season)


What it is: Created by Trent O’Donnell and Patrick Brammall, who also stars, this comedy follows pairs of colleagues involved a major drug cartel operation and bust: two cops, two criminals, two dispatch workers, and two Mexican tunnelers.

Why you should watch it: Sometimes the best comedy comes from simple conversation. That’s what’s explored here in the monotonous day-to-day musings of the series’ ensemble of duos. Relying on airtight writing and exemplary performances from the likes of Tim Meadows, Amy Sedaris, Jesse Plemons, Arturo Castro, and Will Ferrell (who also executive produces with Adam McKay), it’s the kind of smart, rat-a-tat humor that keeps you coming back for more. Season 4 premieres April 8 on Paramount+.

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNowGoogle Play, Microsoft, Paramount+Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 12 hours (for the first three seasons)


What it is: Sex and the City helmer Darren Star struck gold again with city-dwelling women of a certain age with Younger, starring theater vet and now small-screen charmer Sutton Foster as a single mother who lies about her age to pursue her dreams in publishing.

Why you should watch it: Foster is absolutely pitch-perfect in this fun, sexy, metropolitan comedy, and she’s matched by a bevy of scene-stealing costars: Miriam Shor, Hilary Duff, Nico Tortorella, and Debi Mazar, who are all stellar and grow in exciting and unexpected ways over the years. Get to know them all before Younger’s seventh and final season premieres April 15 on Paramount+.

Where to watch: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, HuluMicrosoft, Paramount+Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 30 hours (for the first six seasons)


What it is: Many are used to stories about the vampire slayer Van Helsing being rooted in the past of Transylvania, but showrunner Jonathan Walker’s Canadian import Van Helsing forwards the clock to a post-apocalyptic world overrun and controlled by vampires. Kelly Overton stars as Vanessa Helsing, a descendant of Abraham Van Helsing who awakens from a coma with the ability to turn vampires human — and as mankind’s last hope for survival.

Why you should watch it: A clever and engrossing take on the well-worn world of vampires, Van Helsing offers plenty for fans of bloodsucking monsters and action-thriller ensemble pieces to sink their teeth into. Season 5 premieres April 16 on Syfy.

Where to watch: Amazon, FandangoNowGoogle PlayMicrosoft, NetflixVudu

Commitment: Approx. 52 hours (for the first four seasons)


What it is: Forest Whitaker stars as the real-life mobster Bumpy Johnson, who after a decade behind bars, returns to his home turf to find 1960s Harlem is different from the one he once ruled.

Why you should watch it: A TV prequel to 2007’s American Gangster with Denzel Washington, this Emmy-winning series from creators Chris Brancato and Paul Eckstein features Oscar-winner Whitaker in peak, fearsome form and has supporting turns from the likes of Lucy Fry, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Giancarlo Esposito, Vincent D’Onofrio, and others to match. Season 2 premieres April 18 on Epix.

Where to watch: Amazon, EpixFandangoNowGoogle PlayMicrosoftVudu

Commitment: Approx. 9 hours (for the first season)


What it is: Set in a not-too-distant future and adapted from Margaret Atwood’s acclaimed novel of the same name, The Handmaid’s Tale is the harrowing imagining of a society in which few people are able to have children and fertile women are forced into sexual slavery to help procreate for the rich and powerful. A gripping and prescient look at toxic patriarchy’s darkest corners, it truly is must-watch TV.

Why you should watch it: The Handmaid’s Tale stands as the first and only streaming series to take home the Television Academy’s top honor: the Emmy for best drama. We’d follow its formidable cast — Elisabeth Moss, Ann Dowd, Joseph Fiennes, Alexis Bledel, Samira Wiley, and O-T Fagbenle among them — and behind-the-camera creatives anywhere, maybe even to Gilead. Season 4 finally premieres April 28 on Hulu.

Where to watch: AmazonFandangoNowGoogle Play, HuluMicrosoftVudu

Commitment: Approx. 32 hours (for the first three seasons)


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Listen, we get it: This is the time of year that you want to be soaking up some sunshine and staying away from the various screens in your life. But with a crop of 13 certified fresh returning series like this, how can you resist!?


Fear the Walking Dead 75% (AMC)

What it is: An extension of the zombie apocalypse world of AMC mega-hit The Walking Dead that takes place in Los Angeles before the events of its mothership series and shows how city dwellers deal with the virus outbreak.

Why you should watch it: It comes as little surprise that if you love The Walking Dead, you’ll love Fear. Its engrossing backdrop and cast of memorable characters is enough to tune in week to week, even through some of its more languid, slow-boiled pacing. Season 5 premieres June 2 on AMC.

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, HuluMicrosoft, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 40 hours (for the first four seasons)


Luther 88% (BBC America)

What it is: This BBC drama follows a brilliant Detective Chief Inspector (Idris Elba) who finds it difficult to strike a work-life balance as he struggles to toe the line between genius and madness.

Why you should watch it: Elba is a four-time Emmy nominee and Golden Globe winner for his spellbinding performance as DCI Luther, a magnetic cross between Sherlock Holmes and Columbo, in this gritty character study that adds a new dimension to the cop show genre. Season 5 premieres June 2 on BBC America.

Where to watch it: Amazon, Google Play, MicrosoftVudu

Commitment: Approx. 17 hours (for the first four seasons)


Black Mirror 84% (Netflix)

What it is: Basing its title on the black, reflective screen of a powered-off phone, tablet, or computer, this hit anthological Channel 4-turned-Netflix series from creator Charlie Brooker examines mankind’s dark, twisted (and thankfully, for now, hypothetical) future when beholden to modern technology.

Why you should watch it: Few other sci-fi series today have proven as prescient on technology, sociology, and politics as Black Mirror, and it just keeps getting better. Plus, the Emmy-winning series has helped launch the careers of U.K. talent like Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Alex Lawther, Hayley Atwell, Domhnall Gleeson, and many others.

Where to watch it: Netflix

Commitment: Approx. 20 hours (for the first four seasons)


The Handmaid's Tale 83% (Hulu)

What it is: Set in a not-too-distant future and adapted from Margaret Atwood’s acclaimed novel of the same name, The Handmaid’s Tale is the harrowing imagining of a society where fertile women are forced into slavery to help procreate for the rich and powerful. A gripping and prescient look at modern patriarchy’s darkest corners (and possible futures), it truly is must-watch TV.

Why you should watch it: Last year, The Handmaid’s Tale became the first-ever streaming series to take home the Television Academy’s top honor: the Emmy for best drama. We’d follow its formidable cast — Elisabeth Moss, Ann Dowd, Joseph Fiennes, Alexis Bledel, and Samira Wiley among them — and behind-the-camera creatives anywhere, maybe even to Gilead. Season 3 premieres on Hulu June 5. 

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, Hulu, Microsoft, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 19 hours (for the first two seasons)


Designated Survivor 71% (Netflix)

What it is: David Guggenheim’s political thriller imagines what would happen if an entire presidential administration was killed in one fell swoop and the low-ranking cabinet member tapped as designated survivor (a true-life position here played by Kiefer Sutherland) was sworn in as leader of the free world.

Why you should watch it: This network drama-turned-Netflix reboot marks a welcomed return to TV for Sutherland, who, as the titular survivor Tom Kirkman, holds no prisoners as a man between a rock and hard place. Paired with crackling scripts and an excellent ensemble, Designated Survivor is a mile-a-minute thrill-ride and a worthy follow-up to 24. Season 3 premieres on Netflix June 7.

Where to watch it: Netflix

Commitment: Approx. 30 hours (for the first two seasons)


Big Little Lies 89% (HBO)

What it is: From creator David E. Kelley and based on the novel of the same name by Liane Moriarty, Big Little Lies is an murder mystery of intertwined upper-class mothers living in Monterey, California.

Why you should watch it: Big Little Lies is one of the buzziest ensemble dramas on TV today, and that’s thanks in large part to its stacked cast of A-list stars and producers: Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern, Zoë Kravitz — and, in an twist that just about broke the internet, Meryl Streep is co-starring in the new episodes as a woman whose arrival in the rich seaside town of Monterrey causes trouble for the main women. Season 2 returns by popular demand on HBO June 9.

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, HBO Now, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 7 hours (for the first season)


Claws (TNT)

What it is: Niecy Nash stars as Desna Simms, the takes-no-prisoners owner of  a nail salon in the swampy town of Manatee County, Florida. She’s flanked by a scene-stealing assortment of coworkers and patrons. The drama flares, however, when she and her employees turn to organized crime and start laundering money.

Why you should watch it: Full of camp, high-stakes crime drama, and firecracker scripts with performances to match, Claws is some of the most fun you’ll have with a TV series this summer. Plus we’ll take any excuse to see two-time Emmy nominee Nash execute her perfect blend of humor, brawn, and heart as the leading lady. Season 3 premieres June 9.

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNOW, Google Play, Hulu, Microsoft, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 15 hours (for the first two seasons)


Pose 98% (FX)

What it is: From creators Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, and Steven Canals, Pose depicts New York City’s ballroom and voguing scene of the 1980s with sickening pageantry, tea-spilling drama, and high fashions for the gods.

Why you should watch it: Pose made waves upon its premiere by being the largest ever ensemble cast of transgender actors playing trans characters on TV. But aside from its progressive stamp of approval for onscreen representation, it’s also just damn good TV, expertly acted, written, and directed, and unafraid to tackle LGBTQ+ issues that we’ve never seen explored in such a way before. Season 2 premieres on FX June 11.

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNOWGoogle Play, Microsoft, NetflixVudu

Commitment: Approx. 6 hours (for the first season)


Queen Sugar 98% (OWN)

What it is: After the unexpected death of their father, estranged siblings Ralph-Angel (a conman fresh out of prison), Nova Bordelon (a New Orleans–based journalist and activist), and Charley Bordelon (an upper-class Los Angeles mother to a teenage son) move to rural Louisiana to claim their inheritance: hundreds of acres of sugarcane farmland.

Why you should watch it: Queen Sugar is the result of women both behind and in front of the camera joining their powers: executive producer Oprah Winfrey; executive producer, director, and writer Ava DuVernay; stars Rutina Wesley and Dawn-Lyen Gardner; and other female directors for each episode of its three seasons. And their work isn’t the only stunning aspect of the series — sprawling locations under the Louisiana sun and timely discussions of racial prejudice, mass incarceration, and more make it a thought-provoking family drama. Season 4 premieres on OWN June 12.

Where to watch: Amazon, FandangoNOW, Google Play, Hulu, Microsoft, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 32.5 hours (for the first three seasons)


Younger 98% (TV Land)

What it is: Sex and the City helmer Darren Star strikes gold again for city-dwelling women of a certain age with Younger, starring theater vet and now small-screen charmer Sutton Foster as a single mother who lies about her age to pursue her dreams in publishing.

Why you should watch it: Foster is absolutely pitch-perfect in this fun, sexy, metropolitan comedy, and she’s matched by a bevy of scene-stealing co-stars: Miriam Shor, Hilary Duff, Nico Tortorella, and Debi Mazar, who are all stellar. Season 6 premieres on TV Land June 12.

Where to watch: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, Hulu, Microsoft, Vudu

Commitment: About 25 hours (for the first five seasons)


Marvel - Jessica Jones 83% (Netflix)

What it is: Private detective/hard-drinking superhero Jessica Jones overcomes abuse and reluctantly helps save the residents of New York City in the final season of Netflix’s Marvel propjects.

Why you should watch it: Krysten Ritter is sublime as the jeans-and-leather jacket-wearing titular superhero, and her nuanced performance is vital to the portrayal of abuse on screen. Plus, the supporting cast — led by Rachael Taylor and Carrie-Ann Moss, plus David Tennant as the insidious first-season villain Kilgrave — is second to none.  Season 3 premieres on Netflix June 14.

Where to watch: Netflix

Commitment: About 17.5 hours (for the first two seasons)


The Detour 90% (TBS)

What it is: The Detour follows the Parker family as they embark on a roadtrip from their Syracuse, New York home to Florida for a family vacation.

Why you should watch it: As its title would indicate, not everything goes to plan in this well-meaning family road trip, and missteps and mishaps abound. Created by husband-wife duo Samantha Bee and Jason Jones (who stars as the central father with Natalie Zea, Ashley Gerasimovich, and Liam Carroll), the scripts are funny and heartfelt while still leaving room for some unexpected run-ins with the law and other twists. Season 4 premieres on TBS June 18.

Where to watch: Amazon, Google Play, HuluMicrosoft, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 11 hours (for the first three seasons)


Dark 95% (Netflix)

What it is: This foreign-language streaming series from creators Baran bo Odar and Jantje Friesehildren combines elements of time travel sci-fi, horror, and family drama to tell the story of the fictional German town of Winden; its children are inexplicably disappearing, leaving residents in varied states of emotional disarray.

Why you should watch it: Netflix’s first German-language original series is a doozy: spine-tinglingly eerie, fantastical, and at times downright terrifying, it’s a must-watch for any fans of the genre. Season 2 premieres on Netflix June 21.

Where to watch it: Netflix

Commitment: Approx. 8.5 hours (for the first season)


Legion 91% (FX)

What it is: While Legion is among the most original—and undefinable—series on TV today, in the simplest of terms, it’s the story of psych-ward patient David Haller (Dan Stevens) and his sidekick-turned-nemesis Lenny (Aubrey Plaza) as David more fully becomes what he’s always known himself to be: a mutant.

Why you should watch it: To anyone who says they’re tiring of the superhero genre overtaking film and TV, we say, “Have you seen Legion?” Noah Hawley’s absolutely singular X-Men–based vision is a mind-bending and engrossing head-scratcher that’s well worth committing to. And committing is exactly what Stevens and Plaza do with their no-holds-barred, fearless performances. Season 3, its final season, premieres on FX June 24.

Where to watch it: Amazon, FandangoNow, Google Play, Hulu, Microsoft, Vudu

Commitment: Approx. 15 hours (for the first two seasons)


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Thumbnail image photo credit: David Giesbrecht/Netflix; Sarah Shatz/FX; Pari Dukovic/FX

The people have spoken, and the results are in. Check out the list below for the winners of the People’s Choice Awards 2017, celebrated last night at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. Ellen DeGeneres made history at the show by becoming the most decorated People’s Choice Awards winner of all time.


Movies | Television | Music & Digital


Favorite Movie


Favorite Movie Actor


Favorite Movie Actress


Favorite Action Movie


Favorite Action Movie Actor


Favorite Action Movie Actress


Favorite Animated Movie Voice


Bill Murray

The Jungle Book


Ellen DeGeneres

Finding Dory


Kevin Hart

The Secret Life of Pets


Favorite Comedic Movie


Favorite Comedic Movie Actor


Favorite Comedic Movie Actress


Favorite Dramatic Movie


Favorite Dramatic Movie Actor


Favorite Dramatic Movie Actress


Favorite Family Movie


Favorite Thriller Movie


Favorite Movie Icon


Favorite Year End Blockbuster

The polls are officially open at the People’s Choice Awards website, where you can vote for your 2016 favorites in film, TV, music and digital starting now. The nominees, revealed this morning, were chosen entirely by fans, who voted from Oct 25 through Nov 3 to pick the finalists. You can see the full list of nominees below, and go to PeoplesChoice.com to cast your vote. The 2017 edition of the People’s Choice Awards will be broadcast live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on CBS on Jan 18.


Movie Nominations | TV Nominations | Music & Digital


Favorite Movie


Favorite Movie Actor


Favorite Movie Actress


Favorite Action Movie


Favorite Action Movie Actor


Favorite Action Movie Actress


Favorite Animated Movie Voice


Bill Murray

The Jungle Book


Ellen DeGeneres

Finding Dory


Kevin Hart

The Secret Life of Pets


Favorite Comedic Movie


Favorite Comedic Movie Actor


Favorite Comedic Movie Actress


Favorite Dramatic Movie


Favorite Dramatic Movie Actor


Favorite Dramatic Movie Actress


Favorite Family Movie


Favorite Thriller Movie


Favorite Movie Icon

Happy New Year from Rotten Tomatoes! Hopefully, your resolutions don’t involve watching less TV because 2016 promises to be rich with more scripted shows than ever. Many are coming back this month, some are hitting streaming, and a few are just darn cool. So grab your remote and whatever terrible low-carb, low-calorie, low-fat snack you’re eating for the next two weeks and start bingeing!


Making a Murderer: Season 1 (2015) 98%

What it is: After spending 18 years in prison for a crime that he didn’t commit, Steven Avery is exonerated by DNA evidence. Two years later he is arrested again for a murder he may not have committed.

Why you should watch it: Filmed over a ten-year period, this highly bingeable series provides a detailed account of the unfathomable events in Avery’s life. The story takes so many unexpected twists and turns that it’s not immediately clear where the truth lies. A guilty man may be facing his comeuppance, or an innocent man might be suffering one of the most egregious miscarriages of justice imaginable.

Where to watch: Netflix

Commitment: 10 hours.


The X-Files: Season 1 (1993) 83%

 

What it is: FBI agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) investigate unexplained paranormal phenomena. Mulder wants to believe, but Scully is a skeptic.

Why you should watch it: With the reboot premiering on Fox later this month, now is the perfect time to get caught up on this era-defining sci-fi show. Most of the episodes follow a case-of-the week (or monster-of-the-week) format, with Mulder and Scully in pursuit of strange leads in remote locations. They don’t always solve each mystery, but they often discover that truth is stranger than fiction. There are also the myth-arc episodes, which revolve around a government conspiracy to cover up the existence of an alien threat to humanity. Basically, think Criminal Minds meets The Twilight Zone and you’ll be on the right track.

Where to watch: All nine seasons of The X-Files are available on DVD and Blu-ray and streaming on Amazon Prime, iTunesMicrosoftNetflix, Hulu, and Vudu.

Commitment: 154 hours.


Deutschland 83: Deutschland 83 (2015) 95%

What it is: In the midst of the Cold War, a young East German soldier with an ailing mother is tasked with going undercover in the West to steal NATO military secrets.

Why you should watch it: Deutschland 83 is a bit like The Americans’ European cousin, capturing the tension and paranoia of the Cold War from the perspective of a conflicted spy on the front lines. Jonas Nay plays Martin Rauch as both a resourceful operative and a wide-eyed innocent, at once committed to his mission and enticed by the freedoms he finds in the West. It’s tense, exciting stuff, full of evocative period details and fascinating personal conflicts.

Where to watch: AmazonGoogle Play, Hulu, and iTunes.

Commitment: 6 hours.


Younger: Season 1 (2015) 97%

What it is: Liza Miller, a newly single mom, is 40 and without a job. After a chance encounter, she decides to go for broke and enlists the help of her best friend to get a makeover and re-enter the workforce as a 26-year-old.

Why you should watch it: Two factors that should seal the deal on your binge quest: Younger is from famed Sex in the City creator Darren Star, and the show stars Sutton Foster, who out-charms every scene, person and thing she appears with. The show also boasts a cast of delightful characters; sweet, fun exploits; and a whimsical perspective that’s worth your precious time before season two airs on Jan. 13.

Where to watch: Amazon, MicrosoftTVLand.com, and Vudu.

Commitment: 4 hours.


The Venture Bros.: Season 6 (2015) 100%

What it is: Living in the long shadow of his world-famous adventuring playboy father (who vanished under unknown circumstances), Dr. Venture is a disgraced scientist who drags his twin sons, Hank and Dean, around the world on violent misadventures with their Led Zeppelin-lovin’ bodyguard Brock Samson.

Why you should watch it: Initially a spoof on Jonny Quest, Venture Bros. has morphed over its five seasons into a hybrid screwball action/comedy, where the jokes whiz by as fast as the bullets and lasers. Popular characters are slaughtered to jar viewers, the pop culture references range from lowbrow to highly esoteric, and the series’ world-building and callbacks to earlier episodes are unparalleled. It’s a ruthless, specific humor which stems from the fact that the show is still driven by its creators, Jackson Publick and Doc Hammer, who write, direct, and voice most of the vast variety of characters (which explains why it takes forever to get new seasons).

Where to watch: Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Hulu, Microsoft, and PlayStation Video. Season six drops Jan. 31 on Adult Swim.

Commitment: 24 hours.


Marvel's Agent Carter: Season 1 (2015) 96%

What it is: Set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Agent Carter takes place shortly after the events of Captain America: The First Avenger, following the exploits of Peggy Carter as she joins the Strategic Scientific Reserve in post-WWII New York City.

Why you should watch it: Essential viewing for fans of the MCU, Agent Carter expands on the background that led to the creation of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Stark Industries, while also infusing the universe with a spunky feminist twist. Peggy Carter is one tough cookie who relies on her wits as much as she does her physical strength, battling villains as well as the internalized (and sometimes externalized) sexism of mid-century America.

Where to watch: Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, MicrosoftPlayStation Video, and Vudu, as well as on DVD and Blu-ray.

Commitment: 5.5 hours.


Parks and Recreation: Season 7 (2015) 89%

ParksAndRec2

What it is: An idealistic small-town government supervisor with an obsessive work ethic and a penchant for waffles helps keep her local Parks and Recreation department running smoothly, despite an eccentric team of easily distracted employees and a boss who deliberately attempts to undermine the bureaucratic process.

Why you should watch it: Here’s why you should watch Parks and Rec: Amy Poehler, Nick Offerman, Chris Pratt, Aziz Ansari, Rashida Jones, Aubrey Plaza, Adam Scott, and Rob Lowe. There’s a reason why this unabashedly sweet and silly workplace sitcom became the calling card for some of today’s biggest and most promising stars. Part of it has to do with the writing, to be sure — equal parts clever and absurd, incisively satirical at times and lovably earnest at others. Morever, though, each role was so perfectly cast that every star was allowed to shine. Amy Poehler is Leslie Knope, Nick Offerman is Ron Swanson, Chris Pratt is Andy Dwyer, Rob Lowe is Chris Traeger (“lit’rally”), and it is very, very hard to dislike any of them. You will laugh, and you will find yourself wishing you could be a part of the gang. This is comfort TV at its finest.

Where to watch: Amazon, HuluiTunes, NetflixVudu, and on DVD.

Commitment: 48.5 hours.


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What it is: After his girlfriend dumps him, struggling writer Jonathan Ames (Jason Schwartzman) puts an ad on Craigslist, advertising himself as an unlicensed private detective. As his moonlight investigation job takes off, his best friend Ray (Zach Galifianakis) and his boss George (Ted Danson) join him on his adventures.

Why you should watch it: It’s a neo-noir comedy with a great ensemble. Ted Danson is awesome, and the stable of recurring and guest stars is formidable. Many feel the series was cancelled too soon, and talk of a follow-up movie (Ames reported in 2015 that he’s working on another draft of the script) continues to keep the detective dream alive. Also, it should get you in the laughing mood for Galifianakis’ upcoming new comedy series, Baskets, premiering Jan. 21 on FX.

Where to watch: Amazon PrimeGoogle Play, HBO GoVudu, and also on DVD and Blu-Ray.

Commitment: 12 hours.


The Missing: Season 1 (2014) 91%

What it is: The order of a second season has led The Missing into the anthology series pool. Season one is the horrifyingly realistic tragedy of one couple’s search for their young son, who goes missing during a holiday in France.

Why you should watch it: Subject matter like this can be difficult; it makes one wonder why watching a story about a missing child could be considered “entertainment.” But the familial dramatic arc and the unfolding mystery are presented with exceptional insight, as the characters’ daunting lives are carried out with specificity by a stellar cast that meets the challenge set before them.

Where to watch: AmazonGoogle Play, iTunes, PlaystationStarz Play (with cable subscription), Vudu, and XFinity (with cable subscription), and on DVD and Blu-ray.

Commitment: 13 hours.


Suits: Season 4 (2014) 100%

What it is: In USA Network’s legal drama about a brilliant but unlicensed lawyer (Patrick J. Adams) and his polished mentor (Gabriel Macht), “suits” can refer to the millions of dollars in play for each case — or the well-dressed, fast-talking, claptrap-thinking litigators who wear them.

Why you should watch it: There’s usually an interesting lawsuit at the center of every episode, but the dynamic at the office of Pearson Hardman is Suits‘ bread and butter. From Louis Litt’s bullying of the associates to Harvey Specter’s obsession with winning, every character develops into someone you either love or love to hate. With a big cliffhanger heading into the Jan. 27 midseason premiere, now is the perfect time to study up on this quick, smart, well-tailored drama.

Where to watch: Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Microsoft, Playstation, USA Network (with cable subscription) and Vudu.

Commitment: 50 hours.

This week at the movies, we’ve got just one wide release: Furious 7, the latest installment of the venerable action series starring starring Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, and Michelle Rodriguez. What do the critics have to say?


Furious 7

82%

The Fast and Furious movies have always delivered white-knuckle thrills. However, critics say what separates Furious 7 from the pack is its heart — without skimping on its patented gravity- and logic-defying action sequences, this new installment doubles as a poignant farewell to the late Paul Walker. If you care about the plot, here it is: rogue ex-secret agent Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) seeks revenge on our heroes after they injured his brother in the previous film, and in turn, the gang teams up with the government to bring him down. Vehicular devastation ensues. The pundits say Furious 7‘s story is as silly as ever, but its energetic, over-the-top action will satisfy fans in the series — and might even win some converts. (Check out this week’s Total Recall, in which we count down the best and worst films of the Furious 7 stars.)

What’s On TV:


Critics say that Darren Star’s witty writing and Sutton Foster’s charisma help to elevate Younger (92 percent) above some of TV Land’s previous sitcoms.

Pundits say that Bloodline (75 percent) remains an addictive, tightly drawn brainteaser framed on a believable canvas, even though its tricky timeline detracts from the potency of the story and its characters.

Also opening this week in limited release:

O.M.G. Can the winter finale of How to Get Away With Murder be topped? Is Marvel’s Agent Carter going to give the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents a run for their money? Will Better Call Saul cook up something satisfying for Jonesing Breaking Bad fans? We don’t know yet, but it won’t be long before some of our favorite TV shows shake things up again. And with a sizable collection of new shows joining the winter roster, who would want to leave the cozy confines of home to pursue more chilly activity outdoors?

Here’s the list of the new and returning shows this winter — plus a look ahead to spring. Keep checking back for updated Tomatometer coverage of your favorite shows — but don’t forget those shows you love to hate!

JanuaryFebruaryMarchSpring

 


January

 

Thursday, Jan. 1

Lucas Bros. Moving Co. season two premiere, FXX

Stone Quackers series premiere, FXX

Sunday, Jan. 4

Galavant mini-series premiere, 8 p.m., ABC

Madam Secretary season one return, 8 p.m., NBC

The Celebrity Apprentice season 14 premiere, 9 p.m., NBC

Downton Abbey season five U.S. premiere, 9 p.m., PBS

The Good Wife season six return, 9 p.m., CBS

Resurrection season two return, 9 p.m., ABC

Monday, Jan. 5

The Bachelor season 19 premiere, 8 p.m., ABC

Gotham season one return, 8 p.m., FOX
Sleepy Hollow season two return, 9 p.m., FOX

Tuesday, Jan. 6
Marvel’s Agent Carter series premiere, 8 p.m., ABC

Pretty Little Liars season five-B premiere, 8 p.m., ABC Family

Switched at Birth season four premiere, 9 p.m., ABC Family

Cougar Town season six premiere, 10:30 p.m., TBS

Wednesday, Jan. 7

American Idol season 14 premiere, 8 p.m., FOX

Empire series premiere, 9 p.m., FOX
Modern Family season six return, 9 p.m., ABC
black-ish season one return, 9:30 p.m., ABC
Hindsight series premiere, 10 p.m., VH1

Thursday, Jan. 8

Archer season six premiere, 10 p.m., FX

Babylon series premiere, 10 p.m., Sundance TV
Parenthood season six return, 10 p.m., NBC
Portlandia season five premiere, 10 p.m., IFC

Friday, Jan. 9

Cold Justice season three premiere, 8 p.m., TNT
Glee season six premiere, 8 p.m., FOX

Masters of Illusion season two premiere, 8 p.m., CW

Banshee season three premiere, 10 p.m., Cinemax

Comedy Bang! Bang! season four premiere, 11 p.m., IFC

Saturday, Jan. 10
The Missing season one finale, 9 p.m., Starz

Sunday, Jan. 11

Shameless season five premiere, 9 p.m., Showtime

Girls season four premiere, 9 p.m., HBO

Togetherness series premiere, 9:30 p.m., HBO

House of Lies season four premiere, 10 p.m., Showtime

Looking season two premiere, 10 p.m., HBO

Revenge season four return, 10 p.m., ABC

Episodes season four premiere, 10:30 p.m., Showtime

Monday, Jan. 12

Eye Candy series premiere, 10 p.m., MTV

Tuesday, Jan. 13
Kroll Show season three premiere, Comedy Central
Parks and Recreation season seven premiere, 8 p.m., NBC

Wednesday, Jan. 14

Melissa & Joey season four premiere, 8 p.m., ABC Family

Baby Daddy season four premiere, 8:30 p.m., ABC Family

It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia season ten premiere, 10:00 p.m., FXX
Stalker season one return, 10 p.m., CBS
Workaholics season five premiere, 10 p.m., Comedy Central

Broad City season two premiere, 10:30 p.m., Comedy Central
Man Seeking Woman series premiere, 10:30 p.m., FXX
Web Therapy season four return, 11 p.m., Showtime

Friday, Jan. 16
The Fall season two premiere, 12:01 a.m., Netflix

Constantine season one return, 8:00 p.m., NBC
World’s Funniest Fails series premiere, 8 p.m., FOX
12 Monkeys series premiere, 9 p.m., SyFy
Grimm season four return, 9 p.m., NBC
Helix season two premiere, 10 p.m., SyFy

Saturday, Jan. 17

The Musketeers season two, 9 p.m., BBC America

Sunday, Jan. 18

Grantchester series premiere, 10 p.m., PBS

Monday, Jan. 19
The Fosters season 2B premiere, 8 p.m., ABC Family
The Originals season two return, 8 p.m., CW
Chasing Life season 1B premiere, 9 p.m., ABC Family

Jane the Virgin season one return, 9 p.m., CW
The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore series premiere, 11:30 p.m., Comedy Central

Tuesday, Jan. 20

The Flash season one return, 8 p.m., CW
Supernatural season 10 return, 9 p.m., CW
Justified season six premiere, 10 p.m., FX

Wednesday, Jan. 21
Arrow season three return, 8 p.m., CW
The 100 season two return, 9 p.m. CW
American Horror Story: Freak Show season finale, 10 p.m. FX

Thursday, Jan. 22
The Vampire Diaries season six return, 8 p.m., CW
Backstrom series premiere, 9 p.m., FOX
Reign season two return, 9 p.m., CW

Saturday, Jan. 24
Black Sails season two premiere, 9 p.m., Starz

Sunday, Jan. 25
Sons of Liberty mini-series premiere, 9 p.m., History Channel

Tuesday, Jan. 27
Sirens season two premiere, 10 p.m., USA

Wednesday, Jan. 28
The Americans season three premiere, 10 p.m., FX
Suits season four premiere, 10 p.m., USA

Thursday, Jan. 29

Grey’s Anatomy season eleven return, 8 p.m., ABC

Scandal season four return, 9 p.m., ABC
Fortitude series premiere, 10 p.m., Pivot
How to Get Away with Murder season one return, 10 p.m., ABC

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February

 

Sunday, Feb. 1
The Blacklist season two return, Post-Superbowl (regularly airs Thursdays at 9 p.m.), NBC

Monday, Feb. 2
Being Mary Jane season two premiere, 10 p.m., BET
Foyle’s War season eight premiere, AcornTV

Wednesday, Feb. 4
Fresh Off the Boat series premiere, 8:30 p.m. (regularly airs on Tuesdays at 8 p.m.), ABC
Nashville season three return, 10 p.m., ABC

Thursday, Feb. 5
Allegiance series premiere, 10 p.m., NBC

Sunday, Feb. 8
The Jinx: The Lives and Deaths of Robert Durst docu-mini-series premiere, 8 p.m., HBO
The Walking Dead season five return, 9 p.m., AMC
Better Call Saul series premiere, 10 p.m. (regularly airs Mondays at 10 p.m.), AMC

Wednesday, Feb. 11
Schitt’s Creek series premiere, 10 p.m., TVGN

Thursday, Feb. 12
The Slap mini-series premiere, 8 p.m., NBC

Friday, Feb. 13
Bosch series premiere, Amazon Prime

Tuesday, Feb. 17
Rizzoli & Isles season five return premiere, 9 p.m., TNT

Thursday, Feb. 19
The Odd Couple series premiere, 8:30 p.m., CBS

Two and a Half Men one-hour series finale, 9 p.m., CBS
Vikings season three premiere, 10 p.m., History Channel

Monday, Feb. 23
The Voice season eight premiere, 8 p.m., NBC
The Night Shift season two premiere, 10 p.m., NBC

Friday, Feb. 27
House of Cards season three premiere, 12 a.m., Netflix

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March

 

Sunday, Mar. 1

Once Upon a Time season four return, 8 p.m., ABC
The Last Man on Earth series premiere, 9 p.m., FOX
Secrets and Lies series premiere, 9 p.m., ABC
Battle Creek series premiere, 10 p.m., CBS

Monday, Mar. 2
The Following season three premiere, 8 p.m., FOX

Tuesday, Mar. 3
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season two return, 9 p.m., ABC

Wednesday, Mar. 4
Broadchurch season two premiere, 10 p.m., BBC America
CSI: Cyber series premiere, 10 p.m., CBS

Thursday, Mar. 5
American Crime series premiere, 10 p.m., ABC
Dig series premiere, USA

Friday, Mar. 6
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt series premiere, Netflix

Monday, Mar. 9
Bates Motel season three premiere, 9 p.m., A&E
The Returned series premiere, 10 p.m., A&E

Tuesday, Mar. 10
Powers series premiere, Playstation Plus

Tuesday, Mar. 17
Community season six premiere, Yahoo Screen
iZombie series premiere, 9 p.m., CW
Undateable season two premiere, 9 p.m., NBC
One Big Happy series premiere, 9:30 p.m., NBC

Friday, Mar. 20
Bloodline series premiere, Netflix

Thursday, Mar. 26
Bones season 10 return, 8 p.m., FOX

Sunday, Mar. 29
Call the Midwife season four premiere, 8 p.m., PBS
Mr. Selfridge season three premiere, 9 p.m., PBS

Tuesday, Mar. 31
Weird Loners series premiere, 9:30 p.m., FOX
Younger series premiere, 10 p.m., TVLand

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Spring 2015

 

Thursday, Apr. 2

The Red Road season two premiere, 10 p.m., SundanceTV

Saturday, Apr. 4

Outlander season one return, 9 p.m., Starz

Sunday, Apr. 5

A.D. series premiere, 9 p.m., NBC
Mad Men season seven return, 10 p.m., AMC

Thursday, Apr. 9
The Comedians series premiere, 10 p.m., FX
Louie season five premiere, 10:30 p.m., FX

Friday, Apr. 10

Marvel’s Daredevil series premiere, Netflix
Cedric’s Barber Battle series premiere, 8 p.m. CW
The Messengers series premiere, 9 p.m., CW

Sunday, Apr. 12

Game of Thrones season five premiere, HBO
Silicon Valley season two premiere, HBO
Veep season four premiere, HBO

Saturday, Apr. 18

Orphan Black season three premiere, 9 p.m., BBC America

Sunday, Apr 26

Happyish series premiere, 9:30 p.m., Showtime

Wednesday, Apr 29

Casual Vacancy mini-series, 8 p.m., HBO

Sunday, May 3

Penny Dreadful season two premiere, 10 p.m., Showtime

Friday, May 8

Grace and Frankie series premiere, Netflix

Thursday, May 14

Wayward Pines series premiere, 9 p.m., FOX

Thursday, May 21

Beauty and the Beast season three premiere, CW

Monday, June 8

Odd Mom Out series premiere, Bravo

TBD Winter/Spring

Hannibal season three premiere, NBC
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell series premiere 2015, BBC America

Salem season two premiere, April 2015, WGN America

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In this week’s wrap-up of news that ended up on the editing room floor, Adam Sandler and Kevin James wish they knew how to quit each other, a new movie crossbreeds a 1980s classic with Pauly Shore, and there has been a Leonardo DiCaprio sighting.

Adam Sandler and Kevin James will join the attack on the institution of marriage, in "I now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry." The film will be directed by Dennis Dugan ("Happy Gilmore") and written by Alexander Payne and James Taylor (the authors of "Sideways"). James and Sandler star as two firefighters who pretend to be a gay couple in order to receive their fire department’s domestic partner benefits. Hilarity ensues.

D.J. Qualls
, Keith David, and Danny Trejo will star in "Delta Farce" as three amigos that are in the army now. The trio is mistakenly dropped in Mexico instead of Iraq, and they wind up defending a village from bandits. C.B. Harding ("The Blue Collar Comedy Tour") is slated to direct.

In breaking news, Leonardo DiCaprio was photographed! That’s right, dashing Leo has been (gasp!) filming "The Blood Diamond," and (double gasp!) some sneaky and well-compensated photographer shot some photos of him in the act (of, uh, acting)!

In other news:


Jessica Alba joins comedian Dane Cook in Lionsgate’s comedy "Good Luck Chuck" about a serial dater (Cook) who finally meets his true love (Alba). (Variety)

Several more actors join the ensemble cast of the Anthony Hopkins-directed indie "Slipstream" – John Turturro, Camryn Manheim, Jeffrey Tambor, S. Epatha Merkerson, Fionnula Flanagan, Christopher Lawford and Michael Clarke Duncan. The cast already includes Hopkins, Christian Slater, Stella Arroyave, Lisa Pepper, Kevin McCarthy, Gavin Grazer, Aaron Tucker and Lana Antonova.
(Hollywood Reporter)

The Weinstein Company wants Catherine Zeta-Jones to topline and Rob Marshall ("Chicago") to direct a movie version of an acclaimed 1959 show about famous stripper Gypsy Rose Lee.
(New York Post)

Production Weekly reports that David Krumholtz ("Numb3rs") will join Eva Mendes in the indie feature "Live!," to be directed by Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Bill Guttenta.
(ComingSoon.net)

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