Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

It's the premiere of Yellowstone, a dark tale from the writer of Hell Or High Water

Kevin Costner in Yellowstone.
Kevin Costner in Yellowstone.
Photo: Paramount

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Wednesday, June 20. All times are Eastern.


Top pick

Yellowstone (Paramount, 9 p.m.): The newly launched channel (formerly known as Spike) continues its efforts to pull in adults hungry for smart, ambitious fare. The newest attempt is Yellowstone, a 10-part drama written and directed by Taylor Sheridan, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter behind Sicario and Hell Or High Water. Sheridan follows up his sleeper hit Wind River (which he also directed) with this sprawling tale of the Dutton family, operators of the largest contiguous cattle ranch in the U.S. Battles with an expanding nearby town, an Indian reservation, and the government are just part of this tale of violence, politics, and men in cowboy hats staring pensively into the distance. Our own Erik Adams says you should tighten your bootstraps, because the pilot episode doesn’t exactly put its best foot forward—“It’s not great, but it’ll give you something to talk to your dad about,” are his exact words. Still, it boasts a plethora of acting talent, including Kevin Costner, Kelly Reilly, Cole Hauser, and Wes Bentley, among others, so we’re hoping it quickly improves. (Also, literal trigger warning for animal violence: Within the first minute, Costner is seen comforting a dying horse, which he then shoots in the head.)

Regular coverage

The Handmaid’s Tale (Hulu)
The Expanse (Syfy, 9 p.m.)

Wild card

Desus & Mero (Viceland, 11 p.m.): We recently learned the comedy duo and late-night hosts Desus Nice and The Kid Mero are reportedly ditching their Viceland talk show for the cozier (and presumably more lucrative) realm of pay cable on Showtime, so may as well tune in now—who knows how many more installments of this iteration of their gig we’re going to get.

Alex McLevy is a writer and editor at The A.V. Club, and would kindly appreciate additional videos of robots failing to accomplish basic tasks.