Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Friday, May 15th, 2020. I'm writing this from the Twin Cities, where AllYourScreens HQ is powered by an extra long night's sleep.
BRITBOX SNAGS NORTH AMERICAN RIGHTS TO LARGE AGATHA CHRISTIE LIBRARY
For a certain generation of people, when they think of British television, one of the first things that comes to mind is Agathie Christie. And if you are one of those people, then the subscription video streaming service BritBox has good news for you. BritBox, which is co-owned by BBC Studios and ITV, has picked up the rights to an extensive collection of Agatha Christie films, TV series and audio plays for the North American version of its service.
Beginning this summer, BritBox will roll out the programs, including Sir John Gielgud in "Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?" and "The Seven Dials Mystery," David Suchet's multiple seasons as Poirot and newly restored high-definition versions of ITV's "Marple" and "Partners in Crime."
PEACOCK ANNOUNCES SLATE OF ORIGINALS FOR JULY 15TH LAUNCH
The NBCU streaming service Peacock is set to officially launch on July 15th and there had been some speculation that the industry production shutdown might have an impact on the number of original shows available to the service when at launch. Executives at Peacock unveiled the slate of originals late yesterday that will be available on the service on July 15th and it's a pretty aggressive number of new programs: the dramas "Brave New World" and "The Capture," the comedy "Intelligence," the movie "Psych 2: Lassie Come Home," reality shows "Lost Speedways" and "In Deep With Ryan Lothe" and the animated children's shows "Curious George," "Dreamworks Where's Waldo?" and "Dreamworks Cleopatra In Space."
STARZ OFFERS BIG DISCOUNT FOR NEW SUBSCRIBERS
Every streaming service is scrambling to grab new subscribers during this pandemic, but Starz is running a pretty aggressive price cut right now. I just saw an ad on Facebook which is offering six months of access to the Starz app for $25. After that, it auto-renews for $43.99 for six months. That compares to the $8.99 monthly fee Starz normally charges for its app. The six-month subscription term in the deal is smart for Starz, since it cuts down on subscriber churn and even at the discounted rate, Starz is still likely coming out ahead financially.
THE WEEKEND BINGE: 5 TV SHOWS THAT ARE GOOD FOR THE SOUL
We live in stressful times right now and while I enjoy a challenging and dark drama as much as the next nihilist, there are times when you just want to watch some television that washes over you like a warm summer breeze. Television that is free from snark and almost guaranteed to wrap you up in their innocent joy like a warm blanket.
Here are five television shows and specials I've been watching on those late nights when I need to stop worrying about the future for a few minutes. It's a cliche to say that television is an escape. But when I watch these shows, I feel just a bit less like I'm living through an unpredictable pandemic.
Here is a rundown of the new shows premiering today....
1) Basketball County: In The Water (Showtime)
A collaboration with NBA star Kevin Durant and sports business executive Rich Kleiman’s Thirty Five Ventures, this documentary examines how Durant’s hometown of Prince George’s County, Md., has recently produced more elite basketball players than anywhere else in the world.
2) Chichipatos (Netflix)
A magician hired for a party lands in hot water when he makes a drug boss disappear during a performance -- but is then unable to make him reappear.
3) I Love You, Stupid (Netflix)
After he loses his girlfriend and his job on the same day, a man in his 30s sees his life turned upside down.
4) Inhuman Resources (Dérapages) (Netflix)
Unemployed and desperate to turn his life around, Alain Delambre is ready to do anything to secure a job at corporate giant Exxya.
5) It's A Dog's Life With Bill Farmer (Disney+)
The iconic voice of Goofy and Pluto for more than 30 years, Disney Legend Bill Farmer steps out from behind the microphone to meet his own favorite characters — dogs. Join Bill as he crosses the country meeting dogs doing all kinds of incredible jobs that make our lives better. In the series premiere, Bill is at sea with a dog who sniffs for whale poop. Then, he meets a dog keeping a sheep ranch moving.
6) Magic For Humans Season Three Premiere (Netflix)
He’s back to pull a rabbit out of a ... piñata? Justin Willman always surprises with frisky magic skills that amuse and charm, trick and disarm.
7) Masters Of Illusion Season Premiere (The CW)
Actor Dean Cain hosts this mystifying series featuring escape artists, cutting-edge illusionists and talented performers.
8) PJ Masks Season Four Premiere (Disney Junior)
Kids like superheroes, so what could be better for tykes than becoming superheroes themselves? That's what happens at night for young friends Connor, Amaya and Greg. When they put on their pyjamas and activate their animal amulets, they turn into their alter egos -- Catboy, Owlette and Gekko.
9) She-Ra And The Princesses Of Power Season Premiere (Netflix)
As the princesses prepare to face Horde Prime and his hive mind army in one final battle, Adora must confront her most elusive adversary yet: herself.
10)The Great (Hulu)
A genre-bending, anti-historical ride through 18th-century Russia following the wildly comedic rise of Catherine the Nothing to Catherine the Great.
11)The Last Narc (Amazon)
A dcoumentary about the kidnapping and murder of a DEA agent in the 1980s.
12)White Lines (Netflix)
When her brother is discovered dead, a Manchester woman leaves her quiet life to travel to Ibiza, where she seeks the truth about his disappearance.
For a rundown of all the new episodes of television premiering tonight, click here.
TOO MUCH TV REALLY IS A THING
This newsletter is called "Too Much TV" because....well, it's hard to keep track of all the new television premiering everyday. To help you prioritize your viewing, click here to see our list of more than 400 upcoming television premieres, movies and finales. You'll find listings from more than 70 networks, as well as streaming services and web shows.
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