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Why Is There So Much TV Right Now?

Photo Illustration by Luis G. Rendon/The Daily Beast/FX/Apple TV+/Netflix
Photo Illustration by Luis G. Rendon/The Daily Beast/FX/Apple TV+/Netflix

This week:

  • Top Chef is finally back!

  • So much good TV!

  • Good for Elizabeth Berkley!

  • More Wicked images!

  • Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!

There’s So Much to Watch Right Now

It’s the time of the year when each week there are seemingly two dozen new TV series or seasons dropping. DVRs are short-circuiting. Bank accounts are drained from streaming service subscriptions. And when people ask me what to watch, there are so many options that my brain goes blank and I just say, “I don’t know.” The reason for this is that the deadline for Emmys consideration is the end of May, so studios are rushing to release their contenders in time. That also, theoretically, means the options are good. That’s, uh, not the case for everything. But should your body’s reaction to spring weather be like mine—throat closes, eyes go dry, incessant sneezing and runny nose—there’s plenty out now making the case for you to spend the coming months indoors.

Shōgun is the most ambitious (and most expensive) series FX has ever done. It doesn’t just look like it, but it is also totally worth the investment; it’s clear the goal was for it to be the network’s version of a Game of Thrones, and it’s living up to that so far.

I love when a show seems like it was made specifically for me, so I’d like to thank everyone involved in Apple TV+’s Palm Royale. The cast alone is bonkers: Kristen Wiig, Carol Burnett, Laura Dern, Allison Janney, Leslie Bibb, Josh Lucas, and Ricky Martin. The soap opera ridiculousness of the plot’s various mysteries reminds me of Desperate Housewives, while Wiig’s performance is kooky and heartbreakingly empathetic in only a way she can pull off. Plus, the costumes!

Gif of a scene from Girls5Eva
Netflix

Netflix’s Girls5eva is often compared to 30 Rock because of Tina Fey’s involvement in both shows. But the show’s comedy itself is why it’s a worthy successor, packed with outrageous characters spitting out jokes at a speed that makes you dizzy with laughter.

ABC’s Abbott Elementary and CBS’ Ghosts continue to be my favorite comfort watches, and both network comedies have not skipped a beat in their third seasons. And there’s more that I haven’t even been able to get to that I’ve heard great things about, like Prime Video’s 3 Body Problem and Disney+’s X-Men ’97. So there’s no need to stock up on Claritin; watch all this TV instead.

Justice for Elizabeth Berkley

The Academy Museum screened the notorious 1995 flop-turned-camp-classic Showgirls this week, to a completely sold-out crowd. On hand to introduce the film was star Elizabeth Berkley, who has triumphed over years of being a Hollywood punchline because of the film to being admired for her tenacity as Nomi Malone as she and the movie are embraced.

I love everything about this, but especially her speech. She said that she and her mother thought she might be nominated for an Oscar for the part: “Every girl in Hollywood had fought for this role. So it was not a strange thing to ask. So tonight I’d like to thank the Academy… Museum.”

Gif of Elizabeth Berkley in Showgirls
United Artists

She also got a standing ovation after thanking the people who championed the film over the years, saying, “I’m so grateful that the film has found its way not only in your hearts but especially the LGBTQ community.”

Berkley and Showgirls being in the news again provided the occasion for a clip to go viral from the sorely underrated reboot of Saved By the Bell that y’all slept on. In it, her character, Jessi Spano, references her days in Vegas after college and transforms into Nomi Malone. Watch it here.

The Juice Is Loose

A choir of children creepily singing a slowed-down version of a popular song is my least favorite movie trailer gimmick. An exception, forever and always, is “Creep” in The Social Network trailer and, now, apparently this. The trailer for Beetlejuice 2 is forgiven because a) giving “Day-O,” of all songs, this treatment is inherently hilarious and b) the teaser looks really good.

Image from Beetlejuice
Warner Bros.

Watch it here.

I Couldn’t Be Happier

I swear I’m trying to do everything in my power not to make being excited for the Wicked movie my entire personality, but look at that photo! (Check out more in the Vanity Fair exclusive.)

Vanity Fair's exclusive cover with the cast of Wicked
Vanity Fair

What to see this week:

Road House: And not just to see Jake Gyllenhaal’s body. Definitely not just that. (Now in theaters)

We Were the Lucky Ones: Get ready to sob. (Mar. 28 on Hulu)

3 Body Problem: Could this be the next Game of Thrones? Could anything? (Now on Prime Video)

What to skip this week:

Immaculate: Sydney Sweeney’s hot streak comes to an end. (Now in theaters)

Shirley: Shirley Chisholm deserved a better biopic. (Now on Netflix)

Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire: Who you gonna call to get them to stop making Ghostbusters movies? (Now in theaters)

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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