Alibi V.25 No.18 • May 5-11, 2016 

Idiot Box

Summertime Views

10 shows to watch out for this summer

BrainDead

Traditionally, summer TV was a season dominated by endless reruns and the occasional “Battle of the Network Stars” special. But today, with 24/7 cable, Netflix, the internet and a whole world of media streaming right at our fingertips, television networks can’t afford to rest on their laurels for three months out of the year. Hence, we have a whole slew of potentially interesting shows premiering this summer. Let’s see what awaits us in 2016.

“Preacher,” AMC—The popular Vertigo comic book about a small town Texas preacher possessed by the unnatural offspring of an angel and a demon comes to AMC with Dominic Cooper (Howard Stark in Marvel’s various movie and TV franchises) in the title role. (May 22 )

“Roots,”A&E—Alex Haley’s best-selling novel about slavery in America (adapted into a justifiably famous miniseries in 1977) gets a slightly more contemporary perspective with Forest Whitaker, Anna Paquin, Jonathan Rhys Meyers, Anika Noni Rose, Mekhi Phifer, James Purefoy and Laurence Fishburne. (May 30 )

“Maya & Marty,” NBC—Maya Rudolph and Martin Short host this umpteenth attempt to revive the old variety show format. (May 31)

“Outcast,” Cinemax—This horror drama about demonic possession is based on the comic book by Robert Kirkman, who penned another little funnybook called The Walking Dead. (June 3 )

“Animal Kingdom,” TNT—TNT turns the 2010 Australian crime drama starring Jacki Weaver, Joel Edgerton and Guy Pearce into a weekly series. Ellen Barkin takes over for Jackie Weaver as the mad mama behind a rural crime family. (June 7 )

“BrainDead,” CBS—Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) stars in this goofy political comedy about Washington, D.C. politicians who have been taken over by brain-eating aliens. Sounds far too realistic to succeed. (June 13)

“Uncle Buck,” ABC—ABC finally takes the wrapper off this long-on-the shelf adaptation of the 1989 movie of the same name. Mike Epps takes over for John Candy as the wacky relative—probably because he was so great taking over for Art Carney in that smash-hit 2005 remake The Honeymooners. (June 14)

“American Gothic,” CBS—Scandal-wracked author James Frey (A Million Little Pieces) is one of the creative forces behind this murder mystery drama that spans several generations of a Boston family. (June 22)

“Stranger Things,” Netflix—Winona Ryder and Matthew Modine headline this ’80s-set drama about a young boy in rural Indiana who disappears into thin air. (July 15 )

“Vice Principals,” HBO—Danny McBride (“Eastbound & Down”) is the creator and star of this raunchy comedy about high school administrators. (July 17)