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

Search Party sets out on its fourth season to find Dory

Alia Shawkat in Search Party season four
Alia Shawkat in Search Party season four
Photo: HBO Max

Here’s what’s happening in the world of television for Thursday, January 14. All times are Eastern. 

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Top pick

Search Party (HBO Max, 3:01 a.m., season-four premiere, episodes 1-3): This is the second season we’ve gotten of the Alia Shawkat-starring comedy thriller since it made the jump from TBS to HBO Max; season three aired way, way, way back in June of 2020. That may seem like a tiny age, but think of it this way: Season two finished in December of 2017, so it might feel like a long time, especially by our current standards—what is time, anyway?—but we’re really getting spoiled here. So when you hit episode three and realize there’s no fourth episode for you to immediately watch, try not to be frustrated. Search Party will be back with another batch of episodes next week, as Dory’s friends wonder where she is, unaware that she’s been abducted by her season-three stalker.

Danette Chavez’s recaps will run daily, so look for more coverage this weekend.

Regular coverage

The Stand (CBS All Access, 3:01 a.m.)
Mr. Mayor (NBC, 8 p.m.)

Wild card

Locked Down (HBO Max, 3:01 a.m., premiere): Locked Down, the new surprise HBO Max movie directed by Doug Liman and written by Steven Knight, is not the first major motion picture to be conceived, filmed, and then released during the pandemic. (That distinction belongs to last month’s Songbird, a.k.a. the fear-mongering dystopian COVID thriller produced by Michael Bay.) But it might be the first to present itself as a relatable vision of how we’re all living—a quarantine movie about life in quarantine. To which any sane viewer might reply, ‘No thanks!’ It was inevitable that films would be made about this significant chapter in global history, in part because a small group of people enduring an extended stay in their own homes is about the only scenario it’s safe and logistically possible to actually shoot right now. But did the results have to start arriving while we’re all still stuck in this nightmare?” Read the rest of A.A. Dowd’s film review.

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!