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, “The Crown” Season 2 debuts and “Psych: The Movie” drops on USA.
“Happy!,” Syfy, Wednesday, 10 p.m.
This new Syfy series is based on New York Times best-selling author Grant Morrison and Darick Robertson’s graphic novel of the same name. The series follows Nick Sax (Christopher Meloni), an intoxicated, corrupt ex-cop turned hit man who is adrift in a world of casual murder, soulless sex and betrayal. After a hit gone wrong, his life is forever changed by a tiny, relentlessly positive, imaginary blue winged horse named “Happy” (voiced by Patton Oswalt).
“Knightfall,” History, Wednesday, 10 p.m.
This History scripted series goes inside the medieval politics and warfare of the Knights Templar, the most powerful, wealthy and mysterious military order of the Middle Ages who were entrusted with protecting Christianity’s most precious relics, including the Holy Grail. After the fall of the city of Acre, the Templar’s last stronghold in the Holy Land, the Grail is lost. Years later, a clue emerges suggesting the whereabouts of the Grail and sends the Templars on a life or death mission to find it.
“Psych: The Movie,” USA Network, Thursday, 8 p.m.
James Roday and Dulé Hill return as Shawn and Gus in this two-hour followup to the beloved USA series. It picks up three years after the series finale when the owners of the fake psychic detective agency — along with some returning fan-favorite characters — come together during the holidays after a mystery assailant targets one of their own. Timothy Omundson, Maggie Lawson, Corbin Bernsen, and Kirsten Nelson will also return in their original roles.
“The Crown,” Netflix, Friday (CRITICS’ PICK)
“The Crown’s” second season is captivating in a way that almost isn’t fair. The costume drama, which follows the early years of the reign of Queen Elizabeth II (Claire Foy), is the kind of story that we’ve told for eons, whether that is the Bible’s take on King David or Shakespeare’s interpretation of Cleopatra — the inner life of a real ruler, at the intersection of duty, personhood, and power. It’s a show that covers so little that is new. Many of the events in the series were well-documented in the media at the time. Many of the characters in it, including Her Royal Highness herself, are still-significant public figures today. “The Crown” sounds like it should be a dry slog through the too-familiar territory of rich and famous people feeling sorry for themselves — a less soapy, more stodgy “Downton Abbey.” But as fans of the first season can attest, because “The Crown” is executed so well — from the magnificent locations and historical table-setting to the fantastic, scintillating lead performance by Foy — this well-trodden material is turned into a rich and compulsively watchable narrative about history, celebrity, and the inescapable difficulties of being a person. (Read the full review here)
“The Grand Tour,” Amazon, Friday
Former “Top Gear” hosts Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, and James May return for the second season of their Amazon series. The new season will see the trio visit more locations than ever, before returning home to pitch their studio tent in the Cotswolds, UK. They will spend over 100 days across four continents, racking up passport stamps from Croatia, Mozambique, Dubai, Colorado, Switzerland, New York, Spain and many more exotic locations around the world.