Hey, y’all—we are thrust into the middle of July and though we won’t all be shuffling into movie theaters to see our first round of blockbusters, there’s still content to have! Thanks to Al Gore (haha!), we have the internet. Thanks to the internet, we have streaming.
That said, let’s get to this new round of trailers! We have a lot to catch up on...
First Impressions: I can’t help but think of the Whitney Houston crooning, “I believe the children are our future, teach them well and let them lead the way” as I watch this trailer. Because these young girls, known as The Radical Monarchs, are at the front lines of social justice. Pride doesn’t even begin to describe it. At the same time, I still yearn for a day when Black and brown childhood can be preserved in a way that they don’t have to fight. I do know one thing, I’m looking forward to watching this documentary. We Are The Radical Monarchs is part of PBS’ POV series.
First Impressions: Continuing his brand of making fun of himself (something he does arguably better than self-critiquing), Kevin Hart is finally realizing his dreams in becoming an action star instead of the sidekick to frequent co-star and friend Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Oh, and I see Missandei (Nathalie Emmanuel). I will say I’m still not sure how well Quibi is faring even with its robust content (there’s some analysis out there that isn’t looking good), but maybe Kevin’s unrelenting fanbase can help here. We’ll see.
First Impressions: This is a true teaser, so we only hear two lines along with some visuals of two young teens sitting on rocks near the beach. The boy says, “They think we’re weird.” and the girl retorts with, “Does that bother you?” Other than that tease, what I do know is that Luca Guadagnino, who directed Call Me By Your Name is crossing over to TV for the first time and that it stars Chloë Sevigny, Jack Dylan Grazer, Alice Braga, Jordan Kristine Seamón, Spence Moore II, Kid Cudi, Faith Alabi, Francesca Scorsese, Ben Taylor, Corey Knight, Tom Mercier and Sebastiano Pigazzi.
First Impressions: Of course Stockton, Calif.’s 1st Black mayor would be the perfect subject for a documentary. This one is exploring the millennial mayor’s political journey, which is particularly interesting since he was elected the same night that Donald Trump was elected.
First Impressions: Yes, this show still comes on. But, if you’ve been following it, you’ll know that Nev now has a new co-host, Kamie Crawford and the two are returning for its first-ever virtual season. Because as Nev says, “even Catfish work from home.” Don’t they usually work (and scam) from home?
First Impressions: Based on the life of artist Keith Knight, Keef (Lamorne Morris) is a rising star cartoonist whose life changes due to one particular incident: yes, that incident involves police brutality. Not only is it timely, but it’s also based on a true story—you know the tragically common story of a Black man, no matter his economic or social position in life. Apparently, this moment is when Keef “woke” up.
American Masters – Unladylike2020: The Changemakers (PBS; Airing: Wednesdays, at 9 p.m. through August 26, 2020)
First Impressions: What does it mean to be a liberated woman? Narrated by Julianna Margulies and featuring the voice of Lorraine Toussaint, American Masters – Unladylike2020: The Changemakers is right on time with the 2020 presidential election and the women’s suffrage centennial. Interviewees of the docuseries will include Rep. Mia Love, Brittany Packnett-Cunningham and more. I spy historic icons such as Bessie Coleman and Josephine Baker, so I’m sure this series will be empowering.
First Impressions: Move over Brady Brunch, it’s time for the Derricos Division! This new series will follow a family of 11 children which includes quintuplets, triplets and two sets of twins—all of which were conceived naturally. Multiple multiples! Jigga what?! Along with the obvious shenanigans that will ensue, parents Karen and Deon are expecting triplets—for those of you keeping score at home (during lockdown), that’ll boost the total number of children to 14! Wow.
First Impressions: High-school sweethearts Riley (Alexandra Shipp) and Chris (Nicholas Hamilton) are torn apart when Chris dies and Riley is left with the guilt. However, Chris is actually in limbo. Living next door to a family of Catholics and learning what limbo was, the concept of it always terrified me. DeRon Horton from the TV series Dear White People co-stars in this, too. This is like Ghost for Generation Z! Also (since I can’t not mention it since we previously reported on it), I’m hoping Shipp has had some “endless” time to think deeply since her last comments about colorism.
First Impressions: Imagine being given a pill that gives you superpowers (for 5 minutes), but you don’t get the long list of side effects that happen on those prescription pill commercials. You don’t even know what power you get until you get it—do you take it? This upcoming sci-fi series stars Jamie Foxx, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Dominique Fishback (Show Me a Hero, The Hate U Give). Plus, it’s set in New Orleans! I’m really into this and am looking forward to the gorgeous visuals.
First Impressions: Yusuf Hawkins was murdered in 1989 by a group of young white men in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn and this doc explores the 30-year legacy of the teen’s murder. It will feature interviews with his family, friends and community members (including Rev. Al Sharpton) as a reflection on the tragedy and subsequent fight for justice and civil rights.
First Impressions: Dayo Okeniyi portrays the legendary Shields “Emperor” Green, a descendant of African kings turned outlaw slave in the pre-Civil War South. It’s giving me real-life Django Unchained. The film also stars Kat Graham, Naturi Naughton, Mykelti Williamson and Harry Lennix.
First Impressions: Romany Malco and Regina Hall? Sign me up. This upcoming film (written and directed by Malco) is based on a character Malco created called Tijuana Jackson. Tijuana is an ex-convict turned motivational speaker...I think most of us know one of those. As the trailer says, this nigga constantly speaks in parables. Oh, I’m definitely looking forward to the improv genius that will come from this.
That’s all for now, folks! ‘Til next Friday!
Updated: Thursday, 07/30/2020, 1:58 p.m. ET: In regard to the upcoming series, We Are Who We Are, we received an official release date from HBO, which is September 14. We’ve now added the exact date above.