Martin Sheen reprises his role as President Bartlet | HBOMax
I know I am very late to the party (by like five years) but just started watching Grace and Frankie on Netflix and can I just say how wonderful it is to see amazing actresses like Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin at the height of their powers? Goals, I tell you.
Lots of new trailers this week, including one I am extremely excited for: The new series based on Stephen King’s 1978 book The Stand, about a deadly pandemic that forces survivors to choose between good and evil factions. Hey, how’s that for newly relevant?! One of the characters in the trailer even remarks about someone who will “keep us safe in these uncertain times,” so.
The Stand remains one of King’s best novels, a massive tome with more than a hundred characters and intertwining plots. It was the subject of a 1994 miniseries (which King also wrote) on ABC that got a bunch of Emmy nods. I did like Gary Sinise as Stu Redman in the 1994 version but really looking forward to seeing what James Marsden does with the lead role. King will reportedly write the ninth and final episode of the series, with a new coda. The cast also boasts Whoopi Goldberg as saintly Mother Abagail and Alexander Skarsgård as villainous Randall Flagg. The Stand comes to CBS All Access (or whatever they’re calling it) on December 17th.
Fans of the late Terry Pratchett have been waiting for this one for almost a decade, and it looks like The Watch is finally going to debut early next year. Based on the Ankh-Morpork City Watch police force from Pratchett’s Discworld series, The Watch stars Richard Dormer as Vimes and Lara Rossi as Lady Sybil Ramkin. It hits BBC America in January 2021.
Kate Mara stars as a teacher who begins an illegal relationship with her student. A sign that the filmmakers are handling the topic using an appropriate 2020 lens (and not just making a titillating fantasy): there’s an accompanying PSA produced in partnership with the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN). A Teacher hits FX on Hulu (can we get less confusing names for your streaming output please, entertainment industry) on November 10th.
The West Wing Special
Members of the original cast of the long-running NBC series reunited on stage to recreate the 2002 episode “Hartsfield’s Landing.” I have to say, I loved this show during its first run and it was so comforting to hear the soaring theme song and see Toby, Sam, Josh, and CJ again. The performance is meant to raise awareness for nonpartisan voter participation organization When We All Vote, and includes Martin Sheen as President Bartlet, Richard Schiff as Toby Zeigler, Bradley Whitford as Josh Lyman, Allison Janney as CJ Cregg, and Rob Lowe as Sam Seaborn, along with most of the rest of the original cast. President Obama, Michelle Obama, President Clinton, and Lin-Manuel Miranda are among the “special guests” listed to appear. A West Wing Special to Benefit When We All Vote debuts on HBO Max October 15th.
Robert Kirkman’s comic book series about a teenager who discovers his superpowers has an all-star cast that includes Steven Yeun as Mark Grayson, J.K. Simmons as his dad, Omni-Man, as well as Mark Hamill, Sandra Oh, and Seth Rogen. Be advised that Kirkman promises the series will include the gory violence of the comics, plus “a little bit of spice.” Invincible will debut on Amazon Prime Video in 2021.
Here’s a bonus trailer (with no apparent release date for the movie) that half my Twitter feed was puzzling over last week. Is it a dark comedy? Is it satire? Is it some kind of allegory? Or is it just a really bad idea for a movie? Wait for that moment when you realize who Fatman is supposed to be. I won’t spoil, just watch.