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Your TV Source Roundup: ‘A Black Lady Sketch Show’ Trailer, ‘Taste The Nation with Padma Lakshmi’ Trailer, ‘The Diplomat’ Trailer, ‘The Great American Baking Show’ Trailer, ‘The Upshaws’ Premiere Date, ‘Ziwe’ Canceled, and More!

Photo Credit: HBO

A Black Lady Sketch Show returns for season four on HBO April 14. The narrative sketch comedy series features a core cast of Black women living relatable and hilarious experiences in a magical reality that subverts traditional expectations. Returning core cast members include Robin Thede, Gabrielle Dennis and Skye Townsend. Season 4 stars three new featured players: DaMya Gurley, Tamara Jade, Angel Laketa Moore, and more than 20 celebrity guest stars.

Season two of Taste The Nation with Padma Lakshmi premieres on hulu May 5. The ten episode season hosted by Padma Lakshmi takes viewers on a culinary adventure across American soil, exploring the rich and diverse communities who have so heavily shaped what American food is today. Over borscht, cornbread, pasteles and more, Padma uncovers the roots and relationship between our food, our humanity and our history – ultimately uncovering stories that challenge notions of identity, belonging, and what it means to be American. 

The Diplomat premieres on Netflix April 20. Kate Wyler is the new US Ambassador to the United Kingdom. She was supposed to go to Afghanistan. She’s great in a crisis zone. In a historic home… less so. War is brewing on one continent and boiling over on another. Kate will have to diffuse international crises, forge strategic alliances in London, and adjust to her new place in the spotlight – all while trying to survive her marriage to fellow career diplomat and political star Hal Wyler. The eight episode series is a high-stakes, contemporary political drama about the transcendence and torture of long-term relationships, between countries and people. 

The Great American Baking Show premieres on The Roku Channel May 5. The series is the American version of the most beloved baking show on the planet, bringing together passionate, talented bakers from around the country to see who will be named America’s Best Amateur Baker. The series is hosted by Ellie Kemper and Zach Cherry with judges Prue Leith and Paul Hollywood. 

The Upshaws Part 4 will premiere on Netflix August 17. Bennie Upshaw, the head of a Black working class family in Indianapolis, is a charming, well-intentioned mechanic and lifelong mess just trying his best to step up and care for his family – wife Regina, their two young daughters and firstborn son, the teenage son he fathered with another woman — and tolerate his sardonic sister-in-law, all without a blueprint for success. But the Upshaws are determined to make it work, and make it to the next level, together. In this upcoming part, the Upshaws continue to ride life’s ups and downs, including new jobs, bigger dreams, health struggles and some major life surprises but still hanging on with the love that comes with family.

Showtime has canceled late night series Ziwe after two seasons. The variety series was a no-holds-barred mix of musical numbers, interviews, guest stars and sketches that challenge America’s discomfort with race, politics & other cultural issues.

Apple TV+ has renewed The Big Door Prize for a second season. Based on M.O. Walsh’s novel of the same name, the series tells the story of a small town that is forever changed when a mysterious machine appears in the general store, promising to reveal each resident’s true life potential. Dusty Hubbard, a seemingly content, cheerful family man and high school teacher, watches everyone around him reevaluate their life choices and ambitions – based on the machine’s printouts – and is forced to question whether he is truly as happy as he once thought. While he remains skeptical of the machine, his wife, Cass, indulges in the dream that there’s something bigger out there for her. Like many of Deerfield’s residents, the couple has lived a relatively safe, uncomplicated life, until the arrival of the Morpho machine. However, all of that is about to change when the community is forced to reconcile with their unfulfilled achievements in pursuit of a better future.The ten episode first season is currently airing Wednesdays. 

Showtime has ordered spy drama series Ghosts of Beirut which will premiere May 19. The four episode limited series is based on the manhunt for Imad Mughniyeh, the elusive Lebanese terrorist who outwitted his adversaries in the CIA and Mossad for over two decades. Told from the American, Israeli and Lebanese perspectives, the series traces Mughniyeh’s origins from the Shiite slums of South Beirut to his masterminding of the concept of suicide bombers, a deadly tactic that led to his swift rise as the world’s most dangerous terrorist. 

High Desert premieres May 7 on Apple TV+. The comedy series follows Peggy, an on-again-off-again addict who decides to make a new start after the death of her beloved mother, with whom she lived in the small desert town of Yucca Valley, California, and makes a life-changing decision to become a private investigator.

Showtime has ordered comedy series Seasoned from Mandy Patinkin and his wife Kathryn Grody. The series follows the delightfully tumultuous relationship and life of a successful, gregarious, deeply committed, slightly insane married couple played by Patinkin and Grody – roles they’ve been rehearsing for the last 43 years. The source of their unending magic is the same as their unending woe: that they’ve stayed together all this time. 

Food Network is expanding its seasonal baking franchise with Summer Baking Championship. The series will premiere with back to back episodes May 15 on Food Network. Ten talented bakers from around the country will tackle unique summer-themed baking challenges featuring the flavors, ingredients, and celebrations of the season for a chance to take home a $25,000 grand prize. Host Jesse Palmer puts the bakers’ skills to the test to prove they can create the most delectable desserts to impress judges Duff Goldman, Carla Hall, and Damaris Phillips. The one baker with the best summertime creations will rise to the top, earning the grand prize and the title of Summer Baking Champion. 

Showtime has passed on its pilot The Wood. The series would have an honest look at friendship and dating from the perspective of three young Black males born and raised in the gentrifying L.A. suburb of Inglewood, fondly referred to by locals as the City Of Champions. The trio’s struggles to balance fatherhood, ambition and loyalty force them to question if they are growing apart … or closer together. With a knowing nod back to the characters of the 1999 film on which it is based, this romantic comedy showcases the humor and heart of young Black men and women trying to navigate life, love and likes on the ‘Gram.

Latin American series Journey to the Center of the Earth is now streaming on Disney+. The eight episode series is inspired by Jules Verne’s famous novel of the same name. The new adventure and sci-fi series follows a group of kids on a voyage through a parallel dimension in which they discover a fascinating world and fight to protect the ecological balance of the planet. 

Ryan Michelle Bathé has been cast in CBS’s comedy pilot JumpStart. She joins Terry Crews in the potential series based on the comic strip of the same name. 

Josh Lawson, Kahyun Kim, and Mekki Leeper have been cast in NBC’s comedy pilot St. Denis Medical. They join Wendi McLendon-Covey and David Alan Grier in the mockumentary style potential series. 

Ken Jeong has been cast in Fox’s comedy pilot based on the podcast and book 10% Happier. The single camera comedy project follows a man who realizes he needs to change his life following a panic attack. 

Taylour Paige, Jovan Adepo, James Remar and Chris Chalk have been cast in HBO Max’s Welcome To Derry. The project is a prequel series to the It film franchise. 

Karim Diané, Kristin Dodson, and Kassandra Lee Diaz have been cast in Onyx Collective’s hulu pilot 1266. They join Gabourey Sidibe in the project which will also see Anna Maria Horsford, Tisha Campbell and Judy Reyes recur. 

Sam Page is set to recur in ABC’s Grey’s Anatomy. He will first show up in the May 4 episode of the long running medical drama series which has been renewed for a twentieth season. 

Amazon is developing a series based on Anderson Cooper’s book Vanderbilt. The book covered the rise and fall of his family over centuries. 

TBS is developing an animated series titled Hellicious. Anthony Kiedis of Red Hot Chili Peppers is set to star in the adaptation of the comic book of the same name by Mina Elwell, Alan C. Medina, Kit Wallis, and Simon Oré.

Ana Cabrera Reports will premiere on MSNBC April 10. The series will air at 10AM. Cabrera previously left CNN. 

Brendan Burke has been named the play-by-play announcer for MLB Sunday Leadoff on Peacock. Burke will be joined in the booth by analysts from participating teams of each week’s game. The streamer will debut its slate of 19 live games on April 23.

Molly Shannon will host Saturday Night Live for the second time April 8. The former cast member played many memorable roles from 1995 to 2001. Jonas Brothers will serve as musical guest for the third time. 

Clone High returns this spring on HBO Max. The modern refresh of the Phil Lord, Chris Miller, and Bill Lawrence series is set at a high school for clones of historical figures. After a high school that was secretly being run as an elaborate military experiment to clone the greatest minds in history was put on ice, the clones have been thawed out 20 years later to resume the experiment with new clone classmates – all while navigating a new set of cultural norms and overly dramatic teen relationships.

Alex Borstein: Corsets & Clown Suits premieres April 18 on Prime Video. The musical comedy special is a deeply personal and wildly fictitious account of one woman’s attempt to f*** with perception. A night of comedy, music, and waxing rhapsodic. A unique comedic special that will lead audiences into Alex Borstein’s mind through a marriage of humor and music, it is equal parts provocative and whimsical. Borstein’s self-penned performance showcases her captivating form of storytelling, with the help of her muse and maestro, Barcelona-native musicians Eric Mills and Salva Rey. 

Showtime’s docuseries Catching Lightning begins streaming April 7 and on air April 9. In the four episode series, infamous mixed martial arts fighter “Lightning” Lee Murray’s voice is heard for the first time since the 2006 Securitas Depot cash heist, in which nearly £53 million in cash (more than $92 million USD at the time) was stolen. Murray addresses the robbery in his own words in the series. In taped recordings provided by his wife Nicola, Murray admits to his involvement in the crime for the first time but denies the assertion that he was the leader of the thieves. 

Funny or Die’s High Science premieres April 20 on discovery+ and HBO Max. The series stars Matt Klinman, and Zack Poitras, featuring Paul Bettany as the voice of futuristic, talking bong “Dr. Oh” who will take Matt and Zack on psychedelic trips of scientific discovery to blow their minds with real facts from the cutting edge of human knowledge. 

Lee Arvoy
Lee Arvoy joined the TV Source team in the summer of 2020 as a TV Writer.

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