It’s March! Time to celebrate spring by staying inside and watching more TV!
National Treasure (Hulu), March 1
Originally a UK Channel 4 miniseries, this is a four-hour deep-dive into rape and sexual assault allegations against a beloved celebrity comedian. Sound familiar? I have some apprehension that it’ll try too hard to give us insight into the mind of a powerful male predator, because honestly, I already know what’s in there; women are constantly forced into situations where we’re taught to empathize with our abusers. But, hey, I’ll try an episode, and if it appears that’s what’s happening, I’ll burn my TV, buy a new one and then watch the excellent Sweet/Vicious on MTV instead, a rape-revenge fantasy that's by far the best superhero show on television. And yes, I’m including Legion in that — deal with it!
When We Rise: The People Behind the Story (ABC), March 2
The four-night netflix dramatization of the gay rights movement is timely. I’m sure it’ll be preachy in the way that educational programs can be, but, if recent history is any indication, we all need to be preached to about love and tolerance, A Clockwork Orange–style. If you need me, I’ll be watching with a box of tissues, a clenched jaw and some good weed, just like my activist heroes before me!
The Arrangement (E!), March 5
A fictionalized version of Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise’s relationship, which any good American is fascinated with. I hope it goes on for at least five seasons so they can hire me to play the Suri character.
Feud: Bette and Joan (FX), March 5
It’s a Ryan Murphy joint about the legendary rivalry between the very pretty Joan Crawford and the very scrappy Bette Davis. If you like Murphy, you will probably enjoy it. If you think he’s bad, you probably won’t. Karina Longworth’s excellent You Must Remember This podcast’s illuminating episode on their relationship is filled with juicy tidbits about their supposed rivalry — maybe just listen to that instead?
Time After Time (ABC), March 5
This show about Jack the Ripper in modern times was made to appease the network exec gods, who demand the blood of at least one terrible time-travel show a season, lest they shrivel up in their khakis and dissolve to dust. Oh well, at least the guy playing Jack the Ripper is, indeed, ripped.
The Americans (FX), March 7
Your favorite ‘80s Russian spies and their extensive wig collection return for another season of trying to murder us all via stress. Good thing it’s not at all relevant these days and that history never repeats itself so we can continue to watch it like everything’s fine.
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Review (Comedy Central), March 16
The space-travel bit from season one of Andy Daly’s delightfully deranged show is probably the funniest thing I’ve seen in the past five years. If this season has one scene that’s a quarter as good as that, I’ll watch the whole thing twice.
Marvel’s Iron Fist (Netflix), March 17
Oh yay! A white man is here to save all of Asia! I will not be watching this trash Daredevil-meets-Batman. And don’t talk to me about how he’s white in the comics; he could easily be Asian-American and this would work so much better. NEXT!
Imaginary Mary (ABC), March 29
This show about a grown woman with an imaginary live-action/CGI hybrid best friend looks crazy, and you probably won’t watch it, but here’s a plea. Rachel Dratch is the voice of the imaginary BFF, and Rachel Dratch is an American hero who should be treated with as much respect as you give the Queen of England or any of Martha Stewart’s beautiful cats. If you watch one show this month, make it The Americans. If you watch two, why not this?! Live a little!
13 Reasons Why (Netflix), March 31
A 13 year-old girl commits suicide and leaves behind cassette tapes for her classmates that explain the "13 reasons why" she did it. That’s one disturbing gift, but the contents of the tapes are even more disturbing: a short life defined by bullying, neglect and sexual assault. I'm curious to see how Pulitzer-winning playwright Brian Yorkey handles adapting Jay Asher's YA novel of the same name — the internal lives of teen girls aren't often explored onscreen with care or complexity.