In the run-up to the most sofa-worthy time of year, television and streaming schedules are full of darkly adult entertainment, including murders in Britain and Austria, as well as sex positive female-focussed comedy from the States. And among all that, one of sci-fi’s most consistently stellar hits takes a bow. Here’s your guide to TV and streaming for the week of Mon 6-Sun 12 of December.
Landscapers, Limited Series
If you remember, watched and enjoyed Channel 4’s chaotically dark and claustrophobic comedy series Flowers, you’ll likely be just as appreciative of director Will Sharpe‘s latest miniseries, Landscapers, which starts airing tonight on Sky Atlantic. Co-starring Flowers alum and genuine national treasure Olivia Coleman alongside the also treasured David Thewlis, Landscapers promises to be another pitch black slice of twisted comedy drama, inspired by the real-life murders of William and Patricia Wycherley in Nottinghamsire, 1998, at the hands of their daughter Susan Edwards (Coleman) and her husband Christopher (Thewlis) – a crime that went unnoticed for more than 10 years. The limited series will be comprised of four episodes, released over a four week period between now and the end of December.
Begins airing Tues 7 Dec at 9pm on Sky Atlantic
Nicole Byer: BBW (Big Beautiful Weirdo), Comedy Special
American comedian Nicole Byer is perhaps best-known to UK audiences as the face of Netflix‘s Nailed It!, the antidote to the Bake Off and other related amateur cooking competition shows, wherein culinary-challenged contestants compete to see who can be the very best of the very worst. Byers is, of course, much more than just an Emmy-nominated TV host: she’s had acting turns on comedy favourites like 30 Rock, The Good Place and Brooklyn Nine-Nine, appears regularly on no less than three podcasts, and released her first book, #VERYFAT #VERYBRAVE: The Fat Girl’s Guide to Being #Brave and Not a Dejected, Meloncholy, Down-in-the-Dumps Weeping Fat Girl in a Bikini in 2020. As the wordy title indicates, Byers is also an outspoken commenter on both body positivity and racism in the entertainment industry and society in general. Expect her to bring her exuberant eccentricity to upcoming Netflix special, Big Beautiful Weirdo.
Streaming from Tues 7 Dec on Netflix
And Just Like That…, Season 1
Grab the cocktails, LLBs but not Kim Cattrall, because three out of the four iconic Sex and the City gals are back for another round of the cult show. And Just Like That… A New Chapter of Sex and the City is a revival/sequel to the aforementioned original, which ran for six seasons between 1998-2004 and still airs on repeat across TV stations and streaming services around the globe to this day, securing its status as a modern classic. Though its attitude to “non-existent” things like bisexuality and some Hot Takes on feminism of the time are hopelessly outdated these days – like most others of its ilk – the HBO show did break new ground for sex positive storylines for women. The less said about its pretty dire movie spinoffs the better, though. While there will be no Samantha rejoining an older Carrie, Charlotte and Miranda, fans can expect plenty of other cameos from Sex and the City‘s original cast across the 10-episode season.
Begins airing Fri 10 Dec at 9pm on Sky Comedy
The Expanse, Final Season
The state of genre television in the last few years has been a very mixed bag, with the departure of fantasy giant Game of Thrones giving way to numerous pretenders to its throne ( …in its heyday, that is). Sci-fi shows, meanwhile, have struggled to sustain themselves, quality-wise, for longer than a season or two – as seen in Westworld – leaving superhero properties to dominate schedules. Netflix’s Stranger Things is the big exception to this rule perhaps, but until Season 4 arrives, there’s time to wave good-bye to something that’s comparatively flown under far too many people’s radars: Syfy/Amazon Prime’s The Expanse. Based on the novels of the same name by James S. A. Corey, The Expanse is a politically charged space thriller that takes place in a Solar System colonised by humans, mixing Cold War-esque conspiracies with impressive sci-fi visuals and excellent character work. Fans of the Battlestar Galactica remake will find themselves at home here. The first five seasons, as well as the upcoming sixth and final one, are available to catch up with on Amazon Prime.
Streaming from Fri 10 Dec on Amazon Prime
Vienna Blood, Season 2
If you’re particularly partial to the consulting detective subgenre of crime drama (Castle, Lucifer, the list goes on…), you may be pleased to learn that the second season of British/Austrian psycho-thriller Vienna Blood is right around the corner. Not to be confused with the Nazi-era film of the same name – though sharing a few real-world thematic parallels in its tracing of historical anti-Semitism – the series is based on Frank Tallis’ Liebermann books, starring Matthew Beard as the titular Max Liebermann. Liebermann uses his skills as a doctor and underling to the one and only Sigmund Freud to help create psychological profiles of murderers for the Austrian authorities. Critics were mixed on the first triple helping of the BBC show two years ago, even awarding it not-so-favourable comparisons to creator Stephen Thompson’s writing on Sherlock. How you feel about the latter will likely inform your appreciation of Vienna Blood, which is returning for three more episodes this week.
Begins airing Fri 10 Dec on BBC 2, and available for streaming on iPlayer thereafter.
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