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15 TV Shows and Movies to Watch this Week: Russian Doll S2, The Flight Attendant S2, and More

Kaley Cuoco in the second season of The Flight Attendant. Photo: HBO Max

Kaley Cuoco and The Flight Attendant Season 2 return this week, and it’s a good thing that HBO Max is rolling out only the first two episodes on Thursday because your stress levels won’t be able to take that much more. “As big as season one is, season two is an even bigger swing,” Cuoco says. “I would say it’s 10 times the size in scope.”

She’s not kidding. While Season 1 (here’s a refresher if you need it) was based on the New York Times bestselling book of the same name by Chris Bohjalian, Season 2 uses totally new source material since Cassie Bowden’s story basically ended with the book. This time, she’s living her best life near Venice, California and still a flight attendant for Imperial Airlines, but also pulling double duty as a CIA asset. When an overseas assignment leads her to inadvertently witness a murder (of course), Cassie becomes entangled in another predicament that’s going to take at least eight episodes to get out of. The good news is that no matter how heightened the circumstances, Cuoco once again will blow you away with her performance, and the chemistry between her and on-and-offscreen BFF Zosia Mamet is the true love story of the series.

There’s also Showtime’s high-profile series, The First Lady. Thanks to an A-list cast that includes Viola Davis, Michelle Pfeiffer, Gillian Anderson, the series doesn’t disappoint. Think of it as the American version of The Crown (where ironically, Anderson most recently played Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher).

Later in the week, Young Sheldon enters new territory when Georgie—all of 17 years old–comes clean to his parents that he’s going to become a father. (It doesn’t help that the mother of his unborn child is 29.) If you haven’t paid much attention to The Big Bang Theory prequel spin-off, now’s a long overdue time to start. As the kids on the show get older (including twins Sheldon and Missy), the show is delving into more mature themes that have really risen the stakes on a weekly basis. This episode in particular is a master class in comedy from Zoe Perry, Lance Barber, and Annie Potts.

Finally, there’s plenty of Earth Day content worthy of your attention (Disney+ and Netflix have some truly wonderful documentaries), and ABC airs the series finale of black-ish with guest star Simone Biles. What else? Read on for the full list of what-to-watch, and I’ll see you all back here next week after we’ve calmed down from The Flight Attendant.

Sunday, April 17

The First Lady (Showtime): The 10 episode series focuses on the lives of Michelle Obama (Viola Davis), Betty Ford (Michelle Pfeiffer), and Eleanor Roosevelt (Gillian Anderson) as they acclimate to their new lives in the public eye and the private anguish they must navigate. The series also stars Kiefer Sutherland as President Franklin D. Roosevelt, Aaron Eckhart as President Gerald Ford, Dakota Fanning as Susan Elizabeth Ford, Lexi Underwood as Malia Obama, and Saniyya Sidney as Sasha Obama. It’s a fascinating look at the women who helped changed the lives of Americans forever. For more about how the series came to be, check out interview with executive producer Cathy Schulman and director Susanne Bier here. 9 p.m. ET/PT

Monday, April 18

Bob Hearts Abishola (CBS): Per CBS, “When Bob, Abishola, and Kemi learn that Morenike’s family disowned her because she’s gay, they do what they can to help her pay for school and stay in America.” 8:30 p.m. ET/PT, 7:30 p.m. CT, and available to stream live and on demand on Paramount+

Celebrity IOU (HGTV): The new season premieres with Tiffany Haddish, who teams up with Drew and Jonathan Scott to help renovate the home of her best friend. Other celebs getting their hands dirty this season include Lisa Kudrow, Halle Berry, Snoop Dogg, Ali Wong, and John C. Reilly, among others. 9 p.m. ET/PT, 8 p.m. CT

Tuesday, April 19

black-ish (ABC): It’s the series finale for one of television’s most important comedies. Per ABC, “As Pops and Ruby prepare to move away, Dre and Bow consider if they should make a big life change as well. Grappling with this idea at work, Dre receives some unexpected advice from Simone Biles, who tells him to follow his heart. The Johnsons prepare for their goodbyes in the series finale of the beloved comedy series.” 9:30 p.m. ET/PT, 8:30 p.m. CT

The final episode of black-ish. Photo: Richard Cartwright/ABC

This Is Us (NBC): Titled, “The Day of the Wedding,” the Pearson family gathers for Kate and Philip’s nuptials, which also offers our first major look at how Rebecca’s Alzheimers is advancing and how the entire family is handling the circumstances. If you just watched last week’s major “Katoby” episode, check out what executive producer Elizabeth Berger said about all those shocking moments. 9 p.m. ET/PT, 8 p.m. CT, and streaming the next day on Hulu

Wednesday, April 20

Freddie Mercury: The Final Act (the CW): The two-hour documentary from BBC Studios is coming to the CW and tells the story of how Freddie Mercury’s legacy lives on thanks to the iconic Queen frontman’s friends who helped stage a tribute concert in his honor to raise awareness and fight the stigma around HIV/AIDS. Featuring new interviews with Brian May and Roger Taylor of Queen, the documentary includes performances by Elton John, George Michael, David Bowie, Annie Lennox, and more. It also features the first major interview with Mercury’s sister. 8 p.m. ET/PT, 7 p.m. CT. An extended cut of the special featuring additional footage will be available to stream on The CW App and the next day.

Russian Doll (Netflix): The second season is finally here, set four years after Nadia (Natasha Lyonne) and Alan (Charlie Barnett) escaped mortality’s time loop together. Per Netflix, “Discovering a fate even worse than endless death, this season finds Nadia and Alan delving deeper into their pasts through an unexpected time portal located in one of Manhattan’s most notorious locations. At first they experience this as an ever-expanding, era-spanning, intergenerational adventure, but they soon discover this extraordinary event might be more than they bargained for and, together, must search for a way out.” Streaming.

Thursday, April 21

Young Sheldon (CBS): George and Mary find out about son Georgie’s secret, and let’s just say that shit hits the fan. Co-creator and executive producer Steve Molaro says, “I love this episode so much because it’s a shining example of a cast and storyline that’s firing on all cylinders. Big laughs, big drama and every character shines across the board. If you haven’t been watching Young Sheldon because you think you know what it is, or you think it’s a show for kids—this episode is one worth checking out. It might change your mind.” He’s right. 8 p.m. ET/PT; 7 p.m. CT; also available to stream live and on demand on Paramount+.

(L-R): Folake Olowafoyeku as Abishola and Tori Dancer as Morenike. Photo: Michael Yarish/CBS

The Flight Attendant (HBO Max): Season two of the Emmy-nominated series starring Kaley Cuoco is back and more high-stakes than ever. The first two episodes premiere Thursday, April 21, followed by another two episodes on Thursday, April 28, and then one episode a week until the season finale on May 26. For more with Cuoco, read our cover story with her here, where she opens up about her tumultuous year and learning to “embrace the gray.” Streaming on HBO Max

Ghosts (CBS): The season finale of the surprise hit comedy airs tonight. Titled “Farnsby & B,” Sam and Jay await their first official guests but must face the obstacles set by a competing B&B. Meanwhile, Isaac takes a major step forward in his personal life.

Rebecca Wisocky, who plays Hetty on the series, shares with Glamour a little bit about her “dream come true” experience on the show, telling us that she’s “thrilled that Ghosts has found such a devoted audience so quickly and I’m excited to see what Hetty’s up to in season two! We’ve all shown we’ve got a lot of living to make up for in the afterlife, [and] Hetty’s learned quite a bit in season one. She might just become a feminist yet!” Check out the clip of the episode below! 9 p.m. ET/PT, 8 p.m. CT and available to stream live and on demand on Paramount+.

Friday, April 22

A Very British Scandal (Prime Video): The limited series A Very British Scandal premieres today starring Claire Foy (The Crown) and Paul Bettany (WandaVision). The three-part historical drama set in the ‘60s is about the Duke and Duchess of Agryll’s highly publicized divorce and the media frenzy surrounding it.

Polar Bear (Disney+): Catherine Keeneer narrates the film about a new mother whose memories of her own youth prepare her to navigate motherhood in the increasingly challenging world that polar bears face today. The directing team behind Disneynature’s Penguins also direct this one, in honor of Earth Day. Streaming

Explorer: The Last Tepui (Disney+): Another Earth Day special, Explorer follows elite climber Alex Honnold (Free Solo) and a world-class climbing team led by National Geographic Explorer and climber Mark Synnott on a strenuous mission deep in the Amazon jungle as they attempt a first-ascent climb up a 1000 foot sheer cliff. Per Disney+, “Their goal is to deliver legendary biologist and National Geographic Explorer Bruce Means to the top of a massive ‘island in the sky’ known as a tepui.” Streaming

The Biggest Little Farm: The Return (Disney+): The follow-up to the 2018 award-winning feature documentary, this time viewers will follow John and Molly Chester’s 10-year journey to transform their land into a working farm. According to Disney+, “Apricot Lane Farms is a beautiful, complex world that reflects our planet’s biodiversity, and this special introduces audiences to animals that will quickly burrow into their hearts. See how the farmers utilize the interconnectedness of nature to help build soil health, maximize biodiversity, and regeneratively grow the most nutrient-dense food possible.” Streaming

Saturday, April 23

A Tail of Love (Hallmark Channel): Animals and a feel-good love story? Count me in! In this aptly named movie of the week, Bella (Brittany Bristow) learns her dog rescue’s future is in question when it loses funding from the main sponsor. Per Hallmark Channel, “The late owner’s son, JR (Chris McNally), is a soldier who is home on leave to handle the sale. During a visit to the rescue JR quickly bonds with Indie, a retired military dog they just took in, and begins spending more time there. When Bella learns the rescue’s property is also being sold, she turns to JR for help with finding the missing document proving her grandparents purchased the land many years before.” 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT

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