Our Staff Picks: TV Shows to Watch the Week of July 17, 2017

Descendants 2
Courtesy of Disney Channel

Welcome back to Tune In: our weekly newsletter offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV.

Each week, Variety’s TV team combs through the week’s schedule, selecting our picks of what to watch and when/how to watch them. This week, “Descendants 2” will premiere across six networks simultaneously and Michael Phelps will race a great white shark.

Shooter,” USA Network, Tuesday, 10 p.m.

Ryan Phillippe returns as former Marine sniper Bob Lee Swagger, who is coaxed out of retirement spent in seclusion when his former commanding officer (Omar Epps) uncovered a plot to assasinate the President of the United States. The series is based on the best-selling novel “Point of Impact” by Stephen Hunter and the 2007 Paramount film starring Mark Wahlberg, who executive produces the series.

“Descendants 2,” Disney Channel, Friday, 8 p.m.

The long-awaited sequel to Disney’s hit TV movie “Descendants” revolves around the kids of Disney villains, sepcifically the offspring of Maleficent, Cruella de Vil, Jafar, the Evil Queen, Ursula, Captain Hook and Gaston. Returning are stars Dove Cameron, Cameron Boyce, Booboo Stewart, Sofia Carson and Mitchell Hope, and new cast members include China Anne McClain, Thomas Doherty, Dylan Playfair and Anna Cathcart. The film will be simulcast on Disney Channel, ABC, Lifetime Movie Network, Lifetime, Disney XD, and Freeform.

“Raven’s Home,” Disney Channel, Friday, 10 p.m.

Raven-Symoné and Anneliese van der Pol return to the Disney Channel for this follow-up to the hit series “That’s So Raven.” The series will pick up with Raven and Chelsea, who are now divorced single mothers raising their two separate families in one house. When one of Raven’s kids begins to show signs that they have inherited her trait of catching glimpses of the future, the already hectic household gets turned upside down. Symoné will serve as an executive producer on the series. Longtime writer-producer partners Scott Thomas and Jed Elinoff will also executive produce.

Ozark,” Netflix, Friday (CRITICS’ PICK)

“Ozark,” executive produced by showrunner Chris Mundy, Bill Dubuque and Mark Williams (who both worked on the Ben Affleck film “The Accountant”) as well as Bateman himself, is Bateman’s best work since “Arrested Development.” Because “Ozark” gives him so much more latitude than that sitcom’s careful joke construction, it may be his strongest work yet. The taut thriller veers close toward storytelling pitfalls that other prestige dramas have made — strippers, money laundering, infidelity, a sex tape, bags of cash, barrels of acid — but deftly avoids falling into the bleak soup of bloated streaming dramas about a tortured male soul. “Ozark” so carefully guides the audience through the story that it is one of the most compulsively watchable debuts of the year — a crime story that is part-thriller, part-caper, and endlessly surprising. (Read the full review here)

“Phelps vs. Shark,” Discovery, Sunday, 8 p.m.

23-time Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps will face perhaps his greatest challenge ever when he races against a great white shark to help kick of Discovery Channel’s annual Shark Week. Phelps currently holds 39 world records in various swimming events, but does he have what it takes to outpace one of the most efficient killing machines the world has ever seen?

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