New this week: 'Psych,' The Chicks album, '30 Rock' reunited

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This cover image released by Columbia Records shows "Gaslighter" by The Chicks. (Columbia via AP)

Here’s a collection curated by The Associated Press’ entertainment journalists of what’s arriving on TV, streaming services and music platforms this week.


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“We Are Freestyle Love Supreme": For anyone who didn't get enough of Lin-Manuel Miranda from the live-capture of “Hamilton,” there is more. Debuting Friday on Hulu is this documentary about the improvising hip-hop group that those and others founded before Miranda created “In the Heights” or “Hamilton.” It's a kind of origin story for a troupe that would go on to incredible fame. Or as Miranda and collaborator Thomas Kail recently put it, it's their “Muppet Babies." In her review, AP Film Writer Lindsey Bahr called it “essential” to Miranda disciples. After the film's June debut was postponed in solidarity with Black Lives Matter protests, it lands on Hulu on Friday.

—"Flannery": The legacy of Flannery O'Connor is a grand and complicated one that continues to unfold. This new documentary directed by Elizabeth Coffman and Mark Bosco, promises to be illuminating. It draw on recently discovered personal letters and her own works, as read by Mary Steenburgen, and features interviews with Mary Karr, Hilton Als, Tommy Lee Jones and Lucinda Williams. A recent New Yorker article, drawing from some of the same material, delved into the bigotry of her youth. The film, premiering Friday in virtual cinemas, will further the conversation with a four-week series of online panel discussions.

—“Airplane!”: Shirley it hasn't been 40 years since possibly the greatest spoof comedy ever made was released. Yet, it's true. This month marks the anniversary of David Zucker, Jim Abrahams and Jerry Zucker's 1980 pun-stuffed parody. Today, it remains hysterical and — with a roster of “serious” actors including Leslie Nielsen, Robert Stack, Robert Hays and Julie Hagerty — a monument to how often, for the biggest laughs, you need to play it straight. Currently streaming on Netflix.

— AP Film Writer Jake Coyle


The Chicks: After changing their name and recording their first album in 14 years, Grammy-winning country trio The Chicks will release their new album, “Gaslighter,” on Friday. The album was produced by hitmaker Jack Antonoff, who has helped Taylor Swift, Lana Del Rey, St. Vincent, Sara Bareilles and Lorde craft music. In an interview with the AP, Natalie Maines said now is the right time for the group to release music: “It just seemed like a good reflection on our times.”

—On Tuesday K-pop powerhouses BTS will release their first Japanese album in two years. “Map of the Soul: 7— The Journey” is the group’s fourth Japanese album and is the follow-up to their latest Korean album, “Map of the Soul: 7.” The new 13-track set includes two new Japanese original songs as well as newly recorded Japanese versions of “Boy With Luv,” “Black Swan,” “Make It Right” and “Dionysus.”

Ellie Goulding recently surpassed Adele’s record for most entries by any British female artist on the Billboard Hot 100 chart with the tune “Hate Me,” her 14th track on the chart. “Hate Me” appears on Goulding’s new album, “Brightest Blue,” out Friday. The album is broken up into two parts: Side A features emotional tunes that range slow to mid-tempo to upbeat, while Side B includes radio-ready pop hits and collaborations with Diplo, Swae Lee, Juice WRLD, Lauv and blackbear.

— AP Music Editor Mesfin Fekadu


—The documentary “Showbiz Kids” promises a candid look at the “high risk, high reward” careers of child actors, with perspective from those who have been there. Those sharing their experiences include Evan Rachel Wood, Jada Pinkett Smith, Henry Thomas, Mara Wilson, Milla Jovovich and Wil Wheaton. Alex Winter, the “Bill & Ted” franchise star who appeared on Broadway as a youngster, wrote and directed the film debuting 9 p.m. EDT Tuesday on HBO and streaming on HBO Max. The documentary also follows two young hopefuls — a teenager looking for her next big stage show and a young unknown who moves to Los Angeles for TV roles — as they balance childhood with work.

—“Psych” fans can rejoice, at least for a couple of hours. Shawn (James Roday) and Gus (Dulé Hill) return in the movie “Psych 2: Lassie Come Home,” debuting Wednesday with the launch of streaming service Peacock. Leaving behind their San Francisco lives, the pair are pulled back to Southern California and Santa Barbara after police chief Carlton “Lassie” Lassiter (Timothy Omundson) is ambushed and ends up in a recovery clinic. The unusual events he witnesses gives Shawn and Gus the thorny job of sorting out a twisted case while navigating their personal lives and, possibly, the supernatural. Maybe a mischievous spirit is responsible for the title.

—The stars of NBC’s “30 Rock” are back in their old roles and with a new mission: to help pitch next season’s shows and stars for the network and its sibling cable channels. Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin are among the cast members taking part in a special airing 8 p.m. EDT Thursday on NBC. The program is yet another outcome of the coronavirus, which kept NBCUniversal and other media companies from the spring tradition of presenting their 2020-21 schedules to ad buyers in New York City. As one alternative, the media company devised the hour-long special that does double-duty as a pitch to viewers and potential commercial sponsors. Itself commercial-free, it will also be shown on channels including USA, Bravo and Oxygen and stream on Peacock.

— AP Television Writer Lynn Elber


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