Summer TV Roundup, Week 2

We're just into Summer, but there are plenty of new shows to enjoy. In these weekly posts I look at the pilot and second episode of new shows this summer.

Downward Dog, Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. on ABC (Premiered May 17)
About: When a new show appears on a network in mid-May after being announced at the previous year's upfront presentation, it's never a good sign. "Downward Dog" probably is a show that ABC executives had second thoughts about, so now it's getting a summer burn off. It got a start with the season finale of regular ABC comedies last week, and tonight it will get to go with the finale of "Dancing With The Stars," so it's getting every chance to succeed. I like star Alison Tollman, who was great in season one of "Fargo," so I was curious to see what the series would be like. It's about a woman trying to navigate life, and her dog, who is also trying to navigate life. Yes, that's right, the dog has one-on-one, "Office"-style interviews as part of the show's set up. That's weird, to be sure. But it was also kind of amusing. Do I think this is a great show? No, I don't. But did I think the pilot was interesting? Yes, I liked the pilot presentation. I'm curious to see if this develops into a surprisingly engaging experience this summer.
Pilot Grade: B-

Twin Peaks, Sundays at 9 p.m. on Showtime (Premiered May 21)
About: In 1990, David Lynch and Mark Frost, stunned the world with "Twin Peaks," a murder mystery in a small town that was mysterious for more than its plot. Now, more than 25 years after it went off the air, "Twin Peaks" is back. Lynch, Frost, and most of the original cast have returned. And the story is picking up somewhat where it left off. The first two episodes premiered on Sunday night, and they were beautiful and sufficiently strange. If you were a fan of the original series, you'll likely be please with the reincarnation. If you've never seen "Twin Peaks" before, then you'll likely be pretty confused by Sunday's two-hour experience. Either way, "Twin Peaks" is back!
Pilot Grade: B-
Second Episode: B-

Streaming Series:
The Keepers, Now Streaming on Netflix (Debuted May 19)
About: Netflix struck gold in December 2015 with "Making A Murderer," a 10-episode true crime exploration of the case against Steven Avery. It was a revolution, and has led to an unexpected second season. It also led to imitations and spin offs. The first of which is "The Keepers," a new seven-episode exploration of the 1969 murder of Sister Cathy in Baltimore, Maryland. The first episode lays out the crime and what's known about the 48-year-old murder case. The second episode poses a theory and possible suspect. The rest of the series, presumably, will continue to explore the investigation, possible suspects, possible motives, and what can be done to help solve this famous cold case. If you enjoy these kind of true crime explorations, and "Making A Murderer" was a show you enjoyed, this is for you.
Pilot Grade: B-
Second Episode: B-


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