So I’ve gobbled up Hacks all over (awesome), watched the season four finale of The Handmaid’s Tale (wow) and Loki episode two (fun!) And I still feel like there are a lot of shows that I miss ? But I have to sleep sometime. I encourage you to read Emily VanDer Werff’s excellent analysis of the very fine fourth season of Handmaid in Vox, this excellent New Yorker piece of what it’s like to be Jean Smart, and Vulture’s insightful recap of the Loki episode. 2. I am now counting the days until the premiere of the second season of Ted Lasso.
We have lots of strong women in this week’s trailer recap, along with a music documentary produced and directed by Questlove, a new Titans trailer, and a film starring Nicolas Cage and his truffle pig (another phrase I never expected I would write him one day).
This is the story of the US women’s national soccer team and their struggle for equal pay, and when I saw the trailer I got angry again on their behalf (the title stands for “Let’s fucking go”). Despite winning four Olympic gold medals and four world titles, they still earned less than their male counterparts – player Jessica McDonald mentions at one point that her paychecks don’t even cover her childcare. Size LFG premiered on HBO Max June 24th.
Summer of the soul
The Harlem Cultural Festival took place in 1969, the same summer as Woodstock, and featured performances by Gladys Knight and the Pips, Sly and the Family Stone, Mahalia Jackson, BB King, The 5th Dimension and Stevie Wonder. But the festival was largely forgotten, although everything was captured on film. Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson went through 45 hours of unseen footage (which appeared to have been left in a basement for 50 years) to tell the story of that musical event in Summer of Soul (… Revolution could not be televised) which premieres on July 2nd on Hulu.
Lena Headey, Karen Gillan, Angela Bassett, Michelle Yeoh, and Carla Gugino are in this film about female murderers, and to be perfectly honest, I don’t need much more plot description, I’m fully involved. Paul Giamatti also stars in Gunpowder with Milkshake, which hits Netflix on July 14th.
The morning show
After last season ended when Alex (Jennifer Aniston) and Bradley (Reese Witherspoon) were abruptly cut off after revealing all the behind-the-scenes secrets of their dysfunctional workplace on live television, I wasn’t sure which season two? would look like. Well the wait is almost over and it looks like there are many more twists and turns that made me like this show. Julianna Margulies joins the cast and Mark Duplass, Billy Crudup and Steve Carell return with Aniston and Witherspoon. The Morning Show returns to Apple TV Plus on September 17th.
The hit series based on the Teen Titans comics returns for season three, which (fittingly) takes place in Gotham. Dick Grayson (Brenton Thwaites) states in the voice-over that the city “produces a special class of criminals” and that Vincent Kartheiser as Dr. Jonathan Crane, aka Scarecrow, joins the cast, he may be looking for something. The third season of Titans comes to HBO Max on August 12th.
I honestly don’t know what to make of this movie – Nicolas Cage is a former chef who’s now a hermit and someone is stealing their truffle pig, so he goes completely into her. Or, as Entertainment Weekly puts it succinctly, “John Wick but with a pig.” Our friends at Eater find that truffle-related crimes are one thing, and a scary thing, I didn’t know. Cage’s delivery of the line “Who’s Got My Pig?” Isn’t exactly terrifying, but a little creepy, so I’m pretty confident this isn’t a comedy, even though the trailer has strong “Saturday Night Live Digital Short” vibes. Pig hits theaters on July 16.