ON THE SMALL SCREEN

By Jenny Peters

HOT NEW SERIES WITH BIG STARS

THE ENGLISH
Prime Video
Emily Blunt takes on the Western genre with this dark series about a woman hellbent on avenging her son’s death. When she enlists a Pawnee brave (played by Chaske Spencer, who is a Lakota Native American) to help her, their forceful combination makes this period Western come alive. Oscar nominees Ciaran Hinds and Stephen Rea join in this brutal tale of the Old West, along with Toby Jones, which was shot in Spain (serving once again a perfect stand-in for the American West).


TULSA KING
Paramount+
Taylor Sheridan (Yellowstone, 1883) brings a completely different series to Paramount+, leaving the Western genre behind to tackle the vastly different world of the Mafia. This time he’s recruited Sylvester Stallone as his star, playing a New York crime boss who, after a long stint in prison, is sent to Tulsa, Oklahoma, by his Mafia bosses to restart his career in the Mob in a whole new setting. It’s a little bit brutal, a little bit funny, and a whole new direction for Sheridan, who these days writes his own ticket. As for Stallone, this is his first starring role in a TV series for the 76-year-old actor.


WEDNESDAY
Netflix
For a whole new take on Wednesday Addams, this reboot of the much-loved The Addams Family series (and movies) is a welcome addition for fans of that uniquely weird clan. This time out, Jenna Ortega plays Wednesday, who has made it to high school, while Catherine Zeta-Jones transforms into her mother Morticia and Luis Guzman takes on Gomez. Watch for Christina Ricci to turn up, too, as well as Gwendoline Christie, Thora Birch and other familiar faces in this suitably dark comedy show for the whole family to enjoy.



CHRISTMAS FUN FOR EVERYONE

A CHRISTMAS STORY CHRISTMAS
HBO Max
Ralphie is back, with actor Peter Billingsley in his much-loved role as the man that the Red Ryder-rifle obsessed kid has grown into. He returns to the family house in Cleveland after his “Old Man” has passed away, hoping to show his own kids just what life was like for the Parker family. Sadly, Jean Shepherd is no longer with us to pen this long-awaited sequel, but his spirit lives on in this funny family holiday movie.


SPIRITED
Apple TV+
Ryan Reynolds as Ebenezer Scrooge? Yes, you read that right! He’s joined in this musical comedy retelling of the classic holiday favorite A Christmas Carol by Will Ferrell, who plays the Ghost of Christmas Present. The two cut up in a big way, along with Octavia Spencer and Joe Tippet in this completely reimagined version that includes some catchy tunes that you’re going to start hearing in shopping malls very soon.