What to Watch This Week | May 15–21
CableTV.com’s marvelous recommendations for shows, movies, sports, and more on TV this week.
Sorry to break it to you, but your favorite TV show has been canceled—probably. So far in 2023, over 80 series have ended or are set to end soon. Like CBS’ True Lies? This week’s two-hour finale is the last you’ll see of it. For the whole story, check out CableTV.com’s Canceled: TV Shows Ending in 2023 guide.
This week’s What to Watch picks include new comedy-mystery High Desert, Barack Obama docuseries Working, To All the Boys spinoff XO, Kitty, rock doc Love to Love You, Donna Summer, and the tip-off of the 2023 WNBA basketball season. If you can dream it, you can stream it!
Jump to your preferred streaming service
What’s premiering this week
High Desert | Apple TV+ | Comedy, drama
Series premiere, Wednesday, May 17: After the death of her mother, recovering addict Peggy (Patricia Arquette) begins a new “hustle” as a private investigator. How many crimes can there possibly be in the small desert town of Yucca Valley, California? At least enough to keep hot-mess Peggy busy for eight episodes (three of which drop on May 17). The Ben Stiller-produced High Desert is kind of like Apple TV+’s version of Peacock’s Poker Face, with a solid comic support cast that includes Christine Taylor, Brad Garrett, and Bernadette Peters.
Season tip-off, coverage begins Friday, May 19, 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT: The 2023 WNBA begins May 19 with New York Liberty vs. Washington Mystics, Connecticut Sun vs. Indiana Fever, Chicago Sky vs. Minnesota Lynx, and Phoenix Mercury vs. Los Angeles Aces. This season, the WNBA will host a record 40 games for each of its 12 teams, culminating with the WNBA Finals in October. In addition to ABC and ESPN, 2023 WNBA games will also be carried live by ESPN2, ESPN3, CBS, CBS Sports Network, Paramount+, ION, NBA TV, Prime Video, Twitter, and Meta Quest.
What to watch on Netflix this week
Working | Netflix | Documentary
Series premiere, Wednesday, May 17: Barack Obama, traveling documentarian? That’s his new gig in Working: What We Do All Day, a four-part look into the careers of people working in hospitality service, home care, tech, and other industries, with one question in mind: “What makes a good job good?” Working was inspired by Studs Terkel’s 1974 book of the same name but updated for the modern world of rising living costs, remote work, and the search for meaning in our everyday jobs. All four episodes stream on May 17.
XO, Kitty | Netflix | Comedy, drama
Series premiere, Thursday, May 18: XO, Kitty is the first series spinoff from a Netflix movie franchise—in this case, the To All the Boys trilogy. Fans will recognize titular character Kitty Song Covey (Anna Cathcart), a self-convinced love expert who’s now traveling to Korea to reconnect with her long-distance boyfriend. In a surprise twist we all saw coming, Kitty soon realizes that it’s easier to give relationship advice than apply it in her own life, hence the perfect confluence of K-drama and YA comedy. All 10 episodes of XO, Kitty drop on May 18.
What to watch on Hulu this week
Series premiere, Friday, May 19: “Scandal-ridden megachurch” is becoming a documentary genre all its own, the latest being The Secrets of Hillsong, a four-part series based on reporting by Vanity Fair’s Alex French and Dan Adler. Unlike previous Hillsong docs, The Secrets of Hillsong will feature new interviews with former pastors Carl and Laura Lentz, who were the “celebrity” faces of the church. “The truth doesn’t go anywhere just because you cover it up,” Carl Lentz says in the trailer. “You do not want to be in this chair. I cannot stress it enough.”
White Men Can’t Jump | Hulu | Comedy, drama
Movie premiere, Friday, May 19: The only thing more ubiquitous than reboots and remakes of old movies is rapper Jack Harlow—and here he is in White Men Can’t Jump, a “modern retelling” of the hit 1992 flick of the same name. Harlow takes on the Woody Harrelson role and Sinqua Walls does the same for Wesley Snipes in the tale of a pair of rival Los Angeles streetballers who team up to double their money. This White Men Can’t Jump is notable for featuring the final screen appearance of the late Lance Reddick (John Wick).
What to watch on HBO Max this week
Series premiere, Monday, May 15: New docuseries Angel City chronicles the debut 2022 season of Los Angeles’ Angel City Football Club, a women’s soccer team founded by actor Natalie Portman, venture capitalist Kara Nortman, and gaming entrepreneur Julie Uhrman. Unlike FX’s Welcome to Wrexham, which followed an established men’s soccer unit rebuilding, Angel City is about the launch of an all-new National Women’s Soccer team, created from scratch entirely by women. “There’s no playbook,” Portman says in the trailer. “We have to write our own.”
Movie premiere, Saturday, May 20: It’s hard to believe there hasn’t been a documentary about the late R&B icon before now, but here’s Love to Love You, Donna Summer, directed by Oscar-winner Roger Ross Williams and Summer’s daughter Brooklyn Sudano. Summer broke through in the ’70s disco era with singles like “I Feel Love,” “Last Dance,” and the sexed-up megahit “Love to Love You, Baby,” and continued charting through the ’90s before succumbing to cancer in 2012. Love to Love You looks beyond the disco ball at the real Donna Summer.
W2W wildcards of the week
Love in Zion National | Hallmark Channel | Comedy, drama
Movie premiere, Saturday, May 20: Apparently, there’s an emerging national parks genre of romantic comedies quietly blowing up at Hallmark Channel, starting with Marry Me in Yosemite, Love in Glacier National, and the new Love in Zion National (subtitled A National Park Romance). The story: Lauren (Cindy Busby), a curator working in the Pueblo Nation, teams up with—and falls hard for—local park ranger Adam (David Gridley). Hey, there are worse ideas for a film series than one that combines rom-com heart-tugging and spectacular scenery.
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards | Shudder | Awards
Special premiere, Sunday, May 21: Finally, an awards show that actually matters (and splatters). The Fangoria Chainsaw Awards have been celebrating all things horror since 1992, and 2023’s lascivious lineup is its most terrifying yet. This year’s movie and TV nominees include Nope (left), X, Yellowjackets, What We Do in the Shadows, Prey, Terrifier 2, Chucky, and Stranger Things, as well as obscurities for even the most hardcore horror-head (check out Best First Feature nominee We’re All Going to the World’s Fair on HBO Max). The actual award? A bloody chainsaw, duh.
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