It’s another big week in the world of TV and film, and as always, we’re here live to break it all down for you. We’ve got Aliens and their corresponding Covenants, we’ve got Amber Heard in a scaly 0ne-piece for Aquaman, and even a hippo-pig-dog thingy being hunted down by none other than Tilda Swinton via Netflix. It’s another weird walk through the world of entertainment, so come along with us, won’t you?
First and foremost, we’ve got the first of two highly anticipated Ridley Scott revivals. We’re speaking, of course, about the world premiere of Alien: Covenant, the prequel-series follow-up to Prometheus that fills in the gaps between the 2012 3D blockbuster and the 1979 film that started it all, the original Alien. While we haven’t seen the film yet, it seems that surprises (major ones, at least) aren’t going to be on the menu for Ridley’s latest addition to the series that made him. DT’s own Rick Marshall said the film has trouble finding its course, with too much focus on android consciousness, and not enough scares. However, the film is doing relatively well in aggregate on Rotten Tomatoes, pegged as a fun, if predictable, addition to the franchise. And frankly, that’s good enough for us.
And speaking of Ridley Scott (aka, the busiest 70-plus auteur in Hollywood), this week we’ll be discussing his new project for TNT that will see him deliver a block of programming via his company, Scott Free. Scott will be collaborating on an hourlong series for the network, as well as working on other programming. That’s on top of the other big revival he’s premiering in October with director Denis Villeneuve, Blade Runner 2049.
But it’s not all Ridley Scott this week. Also premiering this weekend is the new Bryan Cranston vehicle Wakefield. Based on the book of the same name, Wakefield details the mental breakdown of a regular family man who abandons his family to become a recluse in his own backyard. It’s odd, and we’re not sure how this kind of thing could ever happen, but we also imagine it’s a well-performed character study by the incomparable comedian-turned-dramatic master.
And now, for something completely different. What do Tilda Swinton, Paul Dano, Jake Gyllenhaal, and a massive CGI hippo-pig-dog have in common? They’re all in a weird new film from Netflix called Okja, which put out its bonkers trailer this week. The film appears to be about said CGI creature being used as a food source in the near future, with corporate arbiter Swinton playing her signature lunatic hard-ass with a plan for domination. Meanwhile, the hippo-pig seems to be the most cuddly 2-ton creature on the planet. It’s unique, its bizarre, and it would have premiered at Cannes this week if the projection system hadn’t malfunctioned. Still, we’ve got the trailer to go on, and it’s a weird one.
We’ll also get into some TV news, as Netflix also promised this week that the long-awaited season 5 of Arrested Development is actually going to happen. In fact, Jason Bateman himself said via Twitter that he’d signed the dotted line, and Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos also hinted that the cast will all be together at the same time for production, which addresses the biggest critique of the show’s fourth season.
While we’re on the subject of revivals, ABC announced this week that Roseanne is coming back, because everything is the same now and no one has any original ideas left. Besides Roseanne Barr reprising her leading role, John Goodman, Big Bang Theory‘s Michael Fishman, Sarah Gilbert, and Laurie Metcalf are all set to return. It’s even been rumored that the show will bring back Becky No. 2 in some sort of role. We’re not even sure what to say about that — a show so sitcom-y and old-fashioned that it replaced a lead character with an entirely different actress in the later seasons, and just hoped no one would say anything, is coming back to air. We’ve officially reached the peak of stupid revival ideas. And how the hell is the fantastic John Goodman into this idea?
Once we’ve calmed down from our frustration there, we’ll talk about yet another X-Men spinoff series, The Gifted. We got a first look at the series this week, and so did about 3o million other people as the trailer for this teen-/tween-looking series about a group of young mutants just discovering their powers went gangbusters online. Frankly, we’ve already backed our horse in the bizarre and brilliantly executed X-Men spinoff Legion, from Fargo’s Noah Hawley, and this series looks like it takes a lot from that show’s premise and adds a Friday Night Lights vibe. Maybe it will be great, but again, we’d rather just watch more Legion. Hawley is the ace in the hole on this premise.
And we finally got a real trailer for Star Trek: Discovery and the new series from CBS looks … decent? There’s a lot of lens flaring happening, à la JJ Abrams, and there’s also a shiny, CGI vibe along the lines of the last failed Star Trek series, Enterprise. That being said, there’s a cool enough premise revealed in the quick look, and we’re intrigued, if nothing else.
Also this week, we’ll talk about the new Seth McFarlane Star Trek spoof (and seemingly Galaxy Quest ripoff) Orville, The Witcher TV series, a teaser for the Dark Crystal prequel series, and more, so tune in at 2 p.m. PT, or take our podcast on the road via the links above!