‘Better Things’ Final Season Trailer is Released by FX; Adult Swim Renews ‘Birdgirl’ and ‘Smiling Friends’ (TV News Roundup)


FX has released the first trailer for the fifth and final season of “Better Things,” its original comedy series created by, executive produced by and starring Pamela Adlon.

Adlon stars as Sam, a working actress raising three daughters in Los Angeles attempting to navigate her life and find fulfillment. Mikey Madison, Hannah Alligood and Olivia Edward portray Sam’s daughter, who are each struggling to come of age, while Celia Imrie portrays Sam’s mother, who deals with increasingly difficult mental and physical health issues. Adlon heavily based the series on her own experiences as an actor raising three daughters.

The trailer for the new season sees Sam working on a new movie, giving a presentation to an elementary school class and arguing with her daughters. The new season will feature Danny Trejo, Lena Waithe, Ron Cephas Jones, Casey Wilson, Angela Kinsey and Lennon Parham as guest stars.

“Better Things” originally premiered in 2016, and over the course of its run it has received critical acclaim for its writing and Adlon’s performance. Adlon received two Emmy nominations for her work on the show in 2017 and 2018. The series was renewed for a fifth season in May 2020, shortly after the run of its fourth season. The season was announced to be its last in Oct. 2021.

Season 5 of “Better Things” will premiere Feb. 28 with two episodes. Watch the full trailer below.

Also in today’s TV news roundup:


The fifth season of historical drama “The Last Kingdom” will premiere on Netflix on March 9 with 10 new episodes. The new season picks up years after the ending of the fourth season, with King Edward forging ahead with his plan to unite the Saxon Kingdoms. Returning cast members include Alexander Dreymon (Uhtred), Emily Cox (Brida), Eliza Butterworth (Aelswith), Mark Rowley (Finan), Arnas Fedaravicius (Sihtric), Adrian Schiller (Aethelhelm), Cavan Clerkin (Pyrlig), Millie Brady (Aethelflaed), Timothy Innes (King Edward), Ewan Mitchell (Osferth) and James Northcote (Aldhelm). New cast members include Ewan Horrocks (Aelfweard), Harry Gilby (Aethelstan), Patrick Robinson (Father Benedict), Harry Anton (Bresal), Rod Hallett (Constantin), Ryan Quarmby (Cynlaef), Sonya Cassidy (Eadgifu), Micki Stoltt (Rognvaldr), Phia Saban (Aelfwynn) and Jaakko Ohtonen (Wolland). The Last Kingdom is produced by Carnival Films, a Universal International Studios company.

Netflix announced that comedian Taylor Tomlinson will debut her second comedy special with the streaming platform on March 8. Titled “Look at You,” the special sees Tomlinson sharing an intimate perspective on her own mental health, her experiences with grief and the progress of her love life. The special was filmed at the Wilbur Theater in Boston last December, and follows Tomlinson’s 2020 special, “Quarter-Life Crisis.” The special was directed by Kristian Mercado, with Tomlinson serving as executive producer, along with Judi Marmel and John Bravakis.

FX announced that biker drama “Mayans M.C.” will debut the first of 10 episodes of its fourth season on April 19 at 10 p.m. on FX, and will be streaming on Hulu the next day. The show tells the story of Ezekiel “EZ” Reyes (JD Pardo), a member of the Mayans motorcycle club charter on the border of California and Mexico. Clayton Cardenas stars as his brother Angel, with Edward James Olmos playing EZ’s father, Felipe. Additional cast includes Danny Pino, Carla Baratta, Michael Irby, Raoul Max Trujillo, Richard Cabral, Emilio Rivera, Sarah Bolger, Frankie Loyal, Joseph Lucero and Vincent Vargas. “Mayans M.C.” co-creators and executive producers are Kurt Sutter and Elgin James, with additional EP Hilton Smith.

The History channel has announced that its fourth presidential miniseries, “Theodore Roosevelt,” will premiere on Memorial Day (May 30) at 8 p.m. ET, airing across two consecutive nights. The five-hour documentary is based on Doris Kearns Goodwin’s “Leadership: In Turbulent Times,” providing a detailed portrait of the former U.S. president. “Theodore Roosevelt” will feature interviews with historians and authors — including Dr. H.W. Brands, Col. USMC Ret. Doug Douds, Dr. Kathleen Dalton, Dr. Douglas Brinkley, Dr. Megan Kate Nelson, Dr. Leroy G. Dorsey, Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, Clay Jenkinson, Roosevelt’s great-grandson Tweed Roosevelt and more. Theodore Roosevelt will be portrayed by Rufus Jones. The series is executive produced by Jon Kamen, Dave Sirulnick and Zara Duffy for RadicalMedia; Goodwin and Beth Laski for Pastimes Productions; Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson for Appian Way Productions; Eli Lehrer, Mary E. Donahue and Jennifer Wagman or The History Channel; Knute Walker and Malcolm Venville, who also directs. Watch the trailer for “Theodore Roosevelt” below.


Starz released the official trailer for its new comedy horror series “Shining Vale,” starring Courteney Cox, Greg Kinnear and Mira Sorvino. The show follows couple Pat and Terry Phelps (Cox and Kinnear), who buy a 200-year-old mansion in Shining Vale, Connecticut in a list-ditch effort to save their marriage and Pat’s career. They move there with their teenage daughter Gaynor (Gus Birney) and son Jake (Dylan Gage), but quickly realize the house is haunted by a ‘50s housewife named Rosemary (Sorvino). “Shining Vale” is executive produced by Jeff Astrof, Sharon Horgan and Clelia Mountford, Aaron Kaplan and Dana Honor. Cox is a producer. The first episode premieres its first two episodes on March 6 at midnight on all Starz streaming platforms. It will debut the same day on the Starz channel at 10:20PM ET in the U.S. and Canada. Watch the trailer below.


Adult Swim has announced second season renewals for animated comedies “Birdgirl” and “Smiling Friends.” A spin-off of the 2001 series “Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law,” “Birdgirl” stars Paget Brewster as the titular character, who leads a double life as a crimefighter and a lawyer and CEO of her law firm. The show is executive produced and showrun by Erik Richter, who also created “Harvey Birdman,” and Christina Miller, with Global Mechanic animating and Williams Street Productions producing. The second season is expected to debut this summer. Created by Michael Cusack and Zach Hadel, “Smiling Friends” follows hotline workers at a charity as they attempt to help clients resolve their issues. Cusack and Hadel voice the main characters, Pim and Charlie, along with several others, and Princess Bento Studio animates. The quarter-hour series aired all eight episodes of its 1st season Jan. 9. The second season premiere date for “Smiling Friends” will be announced at a later date.

Spectrum Originals announced that Paramount Television Studios-produced drama “Joe Pickett” has been renewed for a second season. Based on the best-selling book series by C.J. Box, the series follows a game warden (Michael Dorman) and his family in a rural town that is struggling economically. The first season is currently available for free on Spectrum, and will come to Paramount Plus at a later date. The series is created, directed, showrun and executive produced by John Erick Dowdle and Drew Dowdle (“Waco”). Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher are executive producers for Red Wagon Entertainment. Box also serves as executive producer.


The Apple TV Plus original podcast “The Line” has earned a duPont-Columbia Award Silver Baton. The annual awards are presented by the Columbia School of Journalism to news stories and films that demonstrate strong reporting and have a large public impact. “The Line” is a six-episode nonfiction podcast hosted by Dan Taberski, that tells the story of Eddie Gallagher, a US Navy SEAL who was charged with committing war crimes, and eventually acquitted of all charges aside from posing for a photo with a human corpse. The podcast premiered in April 2021, and is the first Apple TV Plus original podcast to win this honor.