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Welcome to Episode 126 of TV’s Top 5, The Hollywood Reporter‘s TV podcast.
Every week, hosts Lesley Goldberg (West Coast TV editor) and Daniel Fienberg (chief TV critic) break down the latest TV news with context from the business and critical sides, welcome showrunners, executive and other guests, and provide a critical guide of what to watch (or skip, as the case may be).
This week’s five topics are:
1. Best TV of 2021 (so far).
With the calendar inching closer to July, Dan shares his picks for the best shows of the year — so far. Yes, there are those you’d expect (Hacks) but there are plenty of surprises as his 10 best include an unexpected Apple drama, a basketball docuseries and a little-known comedy on an upstart streaming platform. If you need something to watch over the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, this segment is a good start for suggestions.
2. What’s still to come.
Remember how the first few months of the year were slow when it came to high-profile new TV offerings? Yeah, that’s not the case for the back half of 2021, as this segment explores the many new dramas and comedies that will make Dan rewrite his top 10. From delayed returning shows (Succession, Ted Lasso, Sex Education, Pen15!) to revivals (Dexter) and Marvel and Star Wars and everything in between (Impeachment, MacGruber), this segment runs down the can’t-miss shows that have already commanded our attention. Plus, will a lack of Golden Globes mean more shows will be held over from the fourth quarter to 2022? Tune in.
3. ViacomCBS reorg.
Take another spin on the executive carousel as ViacomCBS finally reshuffles its ranks to prioritize Paramount+. Plus, what it says about the industry that all four of the legacy media companies have totally different ways of putting their focus on streaming.
4. Showrunner Spotlight.
This week’s guest is Josh Safran, the showrunner of HBO Max’s Gossip Girl update. Safran, who spent multiple seasons running the original series on The CW, opens up about his approach, how the new incarnation compares with its predecessor, the ways in which social media influence the show and the creative advantages that come with having a series known for being scandalous on a streaming platform.
5. Critic’s Corner.
As usual, every episode ends with Dan’s guide to what to watch (or skip) in the week ahead. This week, he offers reviews of The Mysterious Benedict Society, The Choe Show and Central Park.
Programming note: TV’s Top 5 will be off July 2. Our next episode is July 9, when we’ll be joined by the showrunner behind Netflix’s Peabody-winning Atypical.
Hear it all now on TV’s Top 5. Be sure to subscribe to the podcast to never miss an episode. (Reviews welcome!) You can also email us with any topics or Mailbag questions you’d like to be addressed in future episodes at TVsTop5@THR.com.
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