Wednesday, December 1, 2021

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Friday, Feb. 19 (Netflix)TrueTV Love

Series Debut: Gillian Jacobs was always the most underrated player in “Community,” a reliable source of dark snark who functioned as a counterpoint to Joel McHale who was rarely forced to play the “pretty blonde” card. In her first real headlining gig in Judd Apatow’s “Love,” she plays aimless radio-station programmer Mickey, who spends most of her time stoned, partying or obliviously failing out of relationships. When she meets up with recently-dumped Gus (Paul Rust), it’s … something at first sight. Apatow has been making films for so long, it’s easy to forget his early TV shows (“Freaks & Geeks,” “Undeclared”) where male and female teens and 20-somethings coexisted awkwardly while trying to Figure Out Life. “Love” is an older, none-the-wiser closer of an unofficial Apatow trilogy and the most brutally/hilariously accurate portrayal of modern dating since Aziz Ansari’s fantastic “Master of None.”

“Pregnant at 17”
Saturday, Feb. 20 (Lifetime)

Movie: Chelsea (“Orphan Black”’s Zoé De Grand Maison) is 17, pregnant and in love — too bad she’s a high-school dropout, and her 50-something, married boyfriend Jeff (Roark Critchlow of “Pretty Little Liars”) now wants nothing to do with her. Meanwhile, Jeff’s wife Sonia (Josie Bissett of “Melrose Place”) finds out about all of this and, instead of plotting stone-cold revenge as you’d expect in a Lifetime movie, takes pity on the poor knocked-up teen and befriends her. But no sooner than you can spell “polyamory” … go ahead, I’ll give you a minute … a dark, dangerous figure from Chelsea’s past turns up to endanger her new “family.” Keep ’em coming, Lifetime.

Sunday, Feb. 21 (HBO)

Season Premiere: Maybe you’re aware that season five is the next-to-last for “Girls.” Maybe you fell out of love with Hannah, Marnie, Jessa and Shoshanna a while ago and thought the series was already long-over. Maybe you’ve only heard of the show in relation to that Kylo Ren guy from “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” As long as creator/star Lena Dunham is smart enough to avoid “Sex and the City’s” legacy-destroying mistakes (making a terrible follow-up theatrical movie; making an incomprehensibly wretched follow-up to that follow-up)“Girls”’ place in TV history is guaranteed. Oh, and Marnie is (Allison Williams) getting married, so that should be a trainwreck.

“Superstore,” “Telenovela”
Monday, Feb. 22 (NBC)

Season Finales: When both of these new NBC comedies sneak-preview premiered in December 2015, “Telenovela” looked like the survivor, while “Superstore” appeared to be an ill-conceived waste of talent. Eleven episodes later, Eva Longoria’s “Telenovela” is working way too hard for too few laughs, while America Ferrera’s “Superstore” has become an effortless ensemble comedy. The ratings correspond, meaning there’s far more likely to be a second season of “Superstore” than another round of “Telenovela.” Enjoy the big hair and boob tape while you can. CV

Bill Frost writes about television for Salt Lake City Weekly, talks about it on the TV Tan Podcast, and tweets about it at @Bill_Frost.

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