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

Please report to Star Trek: Lower Decks to help solve An American Pickle

Star Trek: Lower Decks; Seth Rogen and Sarah Snook in An American Pickle
Star Trek: Lower Decks; Seth Rogen and Sarah Snook in An American Pickle
Image: CBS All Access, Photo: Hopper Stone/HBO Max

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Thursday, August 6. All times are Eastern.

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Top pick

Star Trek: Lower Decks (CBS All Access, 3:01 a.m., series premiere): CBS All Access continues to roll along on that Star Trek train, and today releases yet another original series set within that very particular television universe. So here’s an… animated comedy series?

Also read Zack Handlen’s Star Trek: Lower Decks review.

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An American Pickle (HBO Max, 3:01 a.m., premiere): “For much of his unlikely and surprisingly consistent career as a leading man, Seth Rogen has stuck with great success to the signature elements that made him pop out from the Freaks And Geeks cast: the deep voice, the guttural laugh, the self-effacing demeanor that occupies the exact intersection of stoner and nerd. Rogen has, over his decade-plus of stardom, occasionally re-contextualized that persona for effective dramatic performances in auteur-driven works like Take This Waltz and Steve Jobs. But in An American Pickle, the comedian’s latest self-produced project, he pushes the boundaries of what constitutes a Seth Rogen performance in what very much fits the profile of a Seth Rogen comedy: a movie about a guy who falls into a large pickle barrel, gets preserved in brine for a century, and wakes up in contemporary Brooklyn.” Read the rest of Jesse Hassenger’s pre-air review. 

Regular coverage

The Umbrella Academy (Netflix): binge coverage continues

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Wild cards

Time for another wild card lightning round!

Hitmen (Peacock, 3:01 a.m, complete first season, U.S. premiere): “It’s refreshing to watch women with wrinkles and smudged eyeliner attempt to be action stars—and be about as successful at it as any of us might be. Hitmen is hardly the most profound or memorable show of the year, but it’s not trying to do anything more than entertain us—and now, more than ever, that feels like more than enough.” Read the rest of Laura Bogart’s pre-air review.

On The Trail: Inside The 2020 Primaries (HBO Max, 3:01 a.m., documentary premiere): “This self-described ‘cinéma vérité’ HBO Max original feature offers subscribers a ‘ride-a-long’ with CNN’s election reporters through Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina, where windbreaker-donned viewers may consider timely questions like, ‘How well do you need to do in Iowa?’ and ‘Give us a sense of crowd [size.]’” Read the rest of Dan Jakes’ review.

The Not-Too Late Show With Elmo (HBO Max, 3:01 a.m., first-season finale): It’s the end of the road (at least for now) for this winning HBO Max original, which Erik Adams calls “a clever, charming concept, executed with the Workshop’s customary care and craft.”

Doom Patrol (HBO Max, 3:01 a.m., second-season finale): And in a completely different vein, it’s also finale time for Doom Patrol, which could perhaps have benefited from a rousing chorus of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” in its gloomier second season. Refresh yourself on the events so far with Alex McLevy’s pre-air review.

Upright (Sundance Now, 3:01 a.m., U.S. premiere): Tim Minchin’s acclaimed Australian miniseries arrives Stateside with back-to-back episodes—and, presumably, with an upright piano in the flatbed of its truck.

Contributor, The A.V. Club and The Takeout. Allison loves TV, bourbon, and overanalyzing social interactions. Please buy her book, How TV Can Make You Smarter (Chronicle, 2020). It’s short!

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