March looks like a pretty solid entertainment month around here. With 2018 being a convoluted year with limited series, additional HBO Films presentations, late night offerings and changes to the schedule we are never sure exactly what we are going to get each month. Well, I can tell you March has a lot of content to keep a track of and we’ll do our best in the coming month to do just that starting with this extensive post right here. Plus, to help you we have our new & improved Schedule page. So, let’s see what all the hubbub is about for March starting, as always with series.
Original Series: First is a look at the new series on the block followed by a return show, not in its usual spot, then a look at what shows conclude in March. That can only lead us to Bill Hader and his persona Barry, Correction, make that BARRY. It stars Bill Hader as a depressed, low-rent hitman from the Midwest. Lonely and dissatisfied in his life, he reluctantly travels to Los Angeles to execute a hit on an aspiring actor. Barry follows his “mark” into an acting class and ends up finding an accepting community in a group of eager hopefuls within the LA theater scene. He wants to start a new life as an actor, but his criminal past won’t let him walk away – can he find a way to balance both worlds? Stephen Root, Sarah Goldberg, Glenn Fleshler, Anthony Carrigan and Henry Winkler also star. Created, executive produced and written by Bill Hader and Alec Berg, the dark comedy debuts SUNDAY, MARCH 25 (10:30-11:00pm). The first episode is entitled “Chapter One: Make Your Mark.” Maybe, this series will do just that.
–-Episode #1: “Chapter One: Make Your Mark”
Debut date: SUNDAY, MARCH 25 (10:30-11:00pm ET/PT)
Barry (Bill Hader) is a disillusioned hitman from the Midwest. His handler, Fuches (Stephen Root), sends him to LA to execute a hit for the Chechen mob, led by Goran Pazar (Glenn Fleshler) and his right-hand man, NoHo Hank (Anthony Carrigan). Barry’s target: an aspiring actor who is having an affair with Pazar’s wife. Barry follows his “mark” into an acting class taught by beloved teacher/guru Gene Cousineau (Henry Winkler) and is instantly drawn to the group of students, especially Sally (Sarah Goldberg). Barry wants to start a new life in the class, but the criminal world won’t let him walk away so easily. Written by Alec Berg & Bill Hader; directed by Bill Hader.
Under secret wrap with not much news to dispense is another comedian from over at The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. finally comes to HBO. We’re talking about Wyatt Cenac. HBO said he was coming this spring and here he is. WYATT CENAC: PROBLEM AREAS, starring the Emmy and WGA Award-winning comedian and writer debuts FRIDAY, MARCH 23 (11:30pm-12:30am. Rather than sit behind a desk, Cenac embarks on an ongoing journey in the ten-episode series to understand the big issues of the moment and investigate real-world solutions, while putting a focus on the conversation of change and telling stories of civic-minded approaches that deserve widespread attention. Something should drop soon, I would think, but the HBO website has nothing on this yet. There isn’t a trailer to be found or even a list of topics or locales Cenac visits as of this post. We will fill you in when we get more.
The returning show, usually seen a bit later in the year, is the comedic bunch from SILICON VALLEY. The Emmy-winning series returns for its fifth season SUNDAY, MARCH 25 (10:00-10:30pm), followed by other episodes debuting subsequent Sundays at the same time. The show takes a comic look at the modern-day epicenter of the high-tech gold rush, where the people most qualified to succeed are the least capable of handling success. That is the tagline and they are sticking to it. Just what is up in Season Five? Know this, as the trailer says “Pied Piper is in freefall,” and Richard does not seem quite ready for it. But I’m sure you are ready for this series to return. Unfortunately, there is no episode details for the premiere,
A collaboration between Mike Judge and Alec Berg, the show’s cast includes Thomas Middleditch, Zach Woods, Kumail Nanjiani, Martin Starr, Josh Brener, Amanda Crew, Matt Ross, Suzanne Cryer and Jimmy O. Yang.
We are still in the midst of other series, but a couple are wrapping up. We start with the new drama series HERE & NOW, which debuts a new episode SUNDAY, MARCH 04 (9:00-10:00pm), followed by other episodes subsequent Sundays at the same time. Starring Holly Hunter and Tim Robbins and created by Oscar and Emmy winner Alan Ball, the show focuses on a contemporary multiracial family – a philosophy professor, his obsessive wife, their three adopted children, from Liberia, Vietnam and Colombia, and sole biological child – offering a provocative, darkly comic meditation on the disparate forces polarizing contemporary America, exploring what it’s like to be an “other” today. There is a lot to say on that front. No episode breakdowns are available, but here are the titles of each episode in March:
–Season One, Episode Four – “Hide And Seek”
Debuts MARCH 04 (9:00pm – 10:00pm)
–Season One Episode Five – “From Sun Up To Sun Down”
Debuts MARCH 11 (9:00pm – 10:00pm)
–Season One, Episode Six – “Fight, Death”
Debuts MARCH 18 (9:00pm – 10:00pm)
–Season One Episode Seven – “Wake”
Debuts MARCH 25 (9:00pm – 10:00pm)
Starring Sarah Jessica Parker and Thomas Haden Church, season two of the comedy series DIVORCE concludes SUNDAY, MARCH 4 (10:00-10: 30pm). The show centers on suburban exes Frances and Robert, who, after more than a decade of marriage and two children, find themselves caught up in the lengthy process of unwinding their relationship, dealing with the aftermath of their drawn-out separation, and learning to rebuild their lives. Other regulars include Molly Shannon, Talia Balsam, Tracy Letts, Sterling Jerins and Charlie Kilgore. As the season concludes we find both parties trying to focus on business.
–Episode #18 (season 2, episode 8): “Alone Again, Naturally” (season finale)
Debut date: SUNDAY, MARCH 04 (10:00-10:35pm ET/PT)
Robert (Thomas Haden Church) and Jackie (Becki Newton) move toward a new step in their real-estate business. Frances (Sarah Jessica Parker) faces the fallout of a successful opening at her gallery and enlists Robert’s help with a home-repair project. A returned favor from Frances sets Diane (Molly Shannon) on a bender, which comes back to haunt her at another eventful party. Written by Jenny Bicks; directed by Adam Bernstein.
Executive produced by Judd Apatow and Pete Holmes, the comedy series CRASHING concludes its second season SUNDAY, MARCH 4 (10:30-11:00pm). The series draws on Holmes’ own experiences as a comedian, offering a behind-the-scenes look at the world of stand-up comedy. Lately, we have seen him trying to make it big on the college circuit.
–Episode #16 (season 2, episode 8): “Roast Battle” (season finale)
Debut: SUNDAY, MARCH 4 (10:35-11:05 p.m. ET/PT)
In an attempt to show Ali (Jamie Lee) that he has a backbone, Pete (Pete Holmes) enters a comedy-roast battle but finds that being mean is harder than he thought. The fierce competition brings uncomfortable truths to the surface, forcing Pete to examine his priorities in life. Written by Pete Holmes & Judd Apatow; directed by Gillian Robespierre
Oh, boy this can’t go well. But, the good news is a Season Three is already a certainty. After these series conclude HERE AND NOW will encore the night’s premiere for that hour.
The acclaimed HBO comedy series HIGH MAINTENANCE continues its second season FRIDAY, MARCH 02 (11:00-11:30pm), leading up to the March 23 season finale. The series explores the private lives of eccentric New Yorkers through a common thread: their weed deliveryman. Ben Sinclair stars as The Guy, whose client base includes a group of characters with neuroses as diverse as the city. Oh, take a look at right; isn’t he stylish.
–-Episode #13 (season 2, episode 7): “HBD”
Debut: FRIDAY, MARCH 02 (11:00-11:30pm ET/PT)
Emily (Gina Piersanti), an artistic teen, has her birthday spotlight stolen by her bohemian mother (Miriam Shor), her sexual, uninhibited friends and a delivery from The Guy (Ben Sinclair). Only her mother’s European friend (Cécile Delepière) gives her the attention she craves. Written by Katja Blichfeld; directed by Eliza Hittman.
–Episode #14 (season 2, episode 8): “Ghost”
Debut: FRIDAY, MARCH 9 (11:00-11:30pm)
When a high-strung mother (Jessica Hecht) finds herself more involved in her college-aged daughter’s (Molly Brown) life than her own, her husband (Josh Pais) turns to The Guy (Ben Sinclair) to get a prescription for her stress, not to mention their underwhelming sex life. After a routine delivery, The Guy’s good deed helping out an elderly man (Stan Carp) turns into more than he bargained for. Written by Eliza Hittman and Eric Slovin; directed by Eliza Hittman.
–Episode #15 (season 2, episode 9): “#goalz”
Debut: FRIDAY, MARCH 16 (11:00-11:30pm)
Deciding to embrace a life without the distractions of the Internet, a computer programmer (Neimah Djourabchi) tries out a tech-free night per The Guy’s (Ben Sinclair) advice. After a controversial tweet draws attention, a comedian (Kate Berlant) becomes inundated by Internet trolls. Attempting to match a world record, a fearless dancer (Alex Auder) struggles as the hours drag on and her dance partners fall by the wayside. Written and directed by Katja Blichfeld and Ben Sinclair.
–Episode #16 (season 2, episode 10): “Steve” (season finale)
Debut: FRIDAY, MARCH 23 (11:00-11:30pm)
On the day of the eclipse, two couples (Alexandra Fiber, John Gallagher Jr., Omar Shaukat, Anna Suzuki) head to the park and make new friends in the process. The Guy (Ben Sinclair) says some goodbyes and attempts to make a few life changes. Written and directed by Katja Blichfeld and Ben Sinclair.
REAL TIME WITH BILL MAHER continues its 16th season FRIDAY, MARCH 02 (10:00-11:0pm), followed by other new editions subsequent Fridays at the same time. Also, don’t forget OVERTIME over on YouTube. LAST WEEK TONIGHT WITH JOHN OLIVER continues its fifth season SUNDAY, MARCH 04 (11:05-11:35pm.Yeah, he is back after a far too long hiatus. The only weekly news-oriented comedy series presented on Sunday night, the Emmy-winning show features a satirical look at the week in news, politics and current events, as well as addressing broader issues. VICE NEWS TONIGHT, the half-hour nightly newscast from VICE Media and HBO, debuts a new edition MONDAY, MARCH 01 (7:30-8:00pm), followed by other new editions subsequent weeknights Monday through Friday. To single out a clip here is a current hot topic discussed on VICE NEWS TONIGHT:
Movies: Five interesting movies make it into March and they have all have one thing in common – powerful women. Was that a coincidence or not?The movies are ALIEN: COVENANT, MY COUSIN RACHEL, THE BEGUILED, ATOMIC BLONDE and GIRLS TRIP.
Leading the pack is one mean bitch. At least I think it is female. The Xenomorph of the Alien franchise always comes across as female, right? Well, a space crew sets out to colonize a distant planet but is soon terrorized by an evil alien creature when ALIEN: COVENANT debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 03 (8:00pm). Directed by Ridley Scott, the sci-fi horror film stars Michael Fassbender, Katherine Waterston, Billy Crudup, Danny McBride (VICE PRINCIPALS) and Demian Bichir. Tough broad #2 appears when a young Englishman (Sam Claflin) suspects his cousin (Rachel Weisz) of murder but finds himself in a difficult situation after falling in love with her in MY COUSIN RACHEL, debuting SATURDAY, MARCH 10 (8:10pm). The drama is based on the novel by Daphne Du Maurier.
# 3 is a forceful lot of women when a wounded Union soldier (Colin Farrell) is taken into a girls’ school, leading to treachery and betrayal, when THE BEGUILED debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 17 (8:00pm). Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst and Elle Fanning also star in the Civil War-era drama, directed by Sofia Coppola. An undercover agent (Charlize Theron) travels to Berlin to investigate a murder and expose double agents in ATOMIC BLONDE (making her power women #4) debuting SATURDAY, MARCH 24 (8:00pm). James McAvoy also stars in the action thriller. The # 5 set are lifelong friends who reunite in New Orleans for an unforgettable vacation when GIRLS TRIP debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 31 (8:00pm). Regina Hall and Tiffany Haddish star in the rowdy comedy with Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah. Hey, they must be strong enough to take a vacation without their men, right?
HBO Documentary Films: Debuting MONDAY, MARCH 19 (8:00-9:45pm), ARTHUR MILLER: WRITER is an intimate portrait of one of the greatest playwrights of the 20th century (pictured), told from the unique perspective of his daughter, Rebecca Miller, who filmed interviews with her father over decades. Drawing on a wealth of personal archival material, the film provides new insights into Miller’s life as an artist and explores his character in all its complexity. Judd Apatow’s THE ZEN DIARIES OF GARRY SHANDLING explores the remarkable life of the legendary comedian, who was Apatow’s mentor and friend. It features interviews from nearly four dozen friends, family and colleagues; four decades’ worth of television appearances; and a lifetime of personal journals, private letters and home audio and video footage that reveals Shandling’s brilliant mind and restless soul. The two-part documentary debuts MONDAY, MARCH 26 (8:00-10:0pm) and TUESDAY, MARCH 27 (8:00-10:30pm). Here is our first look at the Shandling film:
HBO Kids: SESAME STREET continues its 48th season SATURDAY, MARCH 03 (9:00-9:30am), with other episodes subsequent Saturdays at the same time. Sometimes even I get a warm giggle from the clips I watch of this show. I haven’t seen a whole episode in decades but I still have memories of watching it and because of that I don’t hesitate to include it here. It is now a part of HBO like it or not. Here is a peek at an upcoming episode in March.
–Season 48, Episode 16 – “Street Food” Debut: SATURDAY, MARCH 3 (9:00-9:30am)
Lily, a four-year-old tiger cub from China, joins Chamki, Zuzu and all their new friends for an international food festival on Sesame Street. The group learns about traditional dishes from Japan, South Africa, India and China. Rudy is reluctant to try the unfamiliar foods, but he’s pleasantly surprised when Elmo, Abby and Chris encourage him to taste a few. Take in the clip.
That is followed by –
— Season 48 Episode 17 – “Crafty Friends” debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 10 (9:00-9:30am)
–Season 48 Episode 18 – “It’s Dance Your Favorite Dance Day” debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 17 (9:00-9:30am)
–Season 48 Episode 18 – “Me Am Cookie Monster” debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 24 (9:00-9:30am)
–Season 48 Episode 19 – “Elmo’s Butterfly Friends” debuts SATURDAY, MARCH 31 (9:00-9:30am)
HBO Sports: REAL SPORTS WITH BRYANT GUMBEL, featuring the usual top lineup of contributors, has the next monthly edition debuting TUESDAY, MARCH 27 (10:30-11:30pm. This show is like the Energizer Bunny, it keeps going and going, and does so with great success. Spotlighting the competitive light heavyweight division with two world title bouts, WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING: SERGEY KOVALEV VS. IGOR MIKHALKIN AND DMITRY BIVOL VS. SULLIVAN BARRERA is seen SATURDAY, MARCH 03 at 10:05pm from The Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City. In the main event, titleholder Sergey Kovalev (31-2-1, 27 KOs) makes his 2018 ring debut, defending his crown against rising contender Igor Mikhalkin (21-2, 9 KOs) in a scheduled 12-round contest. In the co-main event, dominating light heavyweights square off when undefeated Dmitry Bivol (12-0, 10 KOs) defends his portion of the title against top contender Sullivan Barrera (21-1, 14 KOs) in a scheduled 12-round showdown.
Other Movies and Shows: We always highlight at the very least other premieres across the main channel here. Do any of these entries ring a bell? I’m betting not. The first titles I offer could have had an entry of their own in HBO Kids as they are sequels to an animated movie. It is the continued stories of the wolves Alpha & Omega. They show up in ALPHA AND OMEGA 2: A HOWL-IDAY ADVENTURE, ALPHA AND OMEGA 4: THE LEGEND OF THE SAW TOOTHED CAVE and ALPHA AND OMEGA 5: FAMILY VACATION. Okay, back to more adult fare with CORRINA, CORRINA, INCARNATE, which you can guess is about an innocent boy…held in the grip of a sinister force from the depths of Hell. Plus, there is LIVE BY NIGHT and HOLY MAN. The first one has Ben Affleck in a stylish crime epic and the other has Eddie Murphy as an inspirational guru. Two FIRST LOOKS features surface as well. They look at the upcoming Isle of Dogs and Pacific Rim: Uprising. Plus, there are several carry-over or returning movies cycling through. For a documentary check out BANKSY DOES NEW YORK
HBO’s Other Platforms: Believe it or not, it is never easy to canvas all the places I need to in order to fill this section. I have multiple windows open every time, but I find interesting content at times. Here is what I’ve come up with for March. HBO Latino: Season Four of EL NEGOCIO premieres on March 18. That’s the show that has three attractive, intelligent women (pictured) who come together with the common goal of revolutionizing the world’s oldest profession. ENTRE NOS is this channel equivalent of DEF COMEDY JAM and it has another round of talent in March. As for movies there is SOY NERO (I am Nero) about a man, born and raised in Los Angeles but deported to Mexico, who crosses the border illegally to return to the only home he’s known and LA REGION SALVAJE (The Untamed) with a young housewife, her macho husband and her gay brother who are upset by the arrival of a mysterious woman in wanted is billed a Latino Suspense film. There is also the debut of LA CASA DE BEATRIZ, (Beatriz’s House) a 16-minute short film. HBO Family: To single out a few from this channel there are movies like CATCH THAT KID, THE GOLDEN COMPASS, HOW TO TRAIN YOUR DRAGON and MARMADUKE. For series, there is always FRAGGLE ROCK. HBO Signature: Over on this there are some classics like THE FRENCH CONNECTION, THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, ERIN BROCKOVICH and WEST SIDE STORY alongside more recent fare like LOGAN, LA LA LAND and GET OUT. HBO Comedy: Pete Holmes (CRASHING) gets airtime of his stand up in PETE HOLMES: FACES AND SOUNDS. Also, Ed McNeil (Modern Family) is DUTCH and Andrew Dice Clay headlines THE ADVENTURES OF FORD FAIRLANE and somehow the three sequels to Kevin Bacon’s TREMORS are listed as a comedy. HBO Zone: Late nights is CINDERELLA’S HOT NIGHT. I know, right? Plus, showings of the animated HBO series ANIMALS. and HARD KNOCKS: TRAINING CAP WITH THE TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS. For your clip how about some standup?
HBONow/Go: To supplement your movie pleasure alongside the Saturday night premieres you can catch quite a few flicks. For starters, how about the 1971 version of THE BEGUILED (pictured) with Clint? Or THE COTTON CLUB, PREDATOR, MISS MARCH, ORANGE COUNTY, JACKIE or THE DARKNESS? Movies just waiting for you to find them for the first time or the hundredth time. It is also a great place to discover an HBO Film presentation like FIVE DAYS or a series you just couldn’t find time for like BEGUILED.
Cinemax: In March, the high-octane series STRIKE BACK returns with a new episode debuting FRIDAY, MARCH 02 (10:00-10:50pm), followed by other new episodes subsequent Fridays at the same time. If you haven’t heard, this season features a fresh team of fearless commandos, recruited by the newly reformed Section 20 to hunt down a fanatical terrorist and his renegade wife.
–Episode #45 (season 5, episode 5)
Debut date: FRIDAY, MARCH 02 (10:00-10:50pm)
With Dr. Markov (Daniel Cerqueira) under Lowry’s (Katherine Kelly) control, Section 20 attempts to intervene before the lethal Novichok cocktail is completed. Novin (Alin Sumarwata) infiltrates the mansion of Borisovich (Peter Firth), a Belarusian drug lord, in order to gain important intel. Written by Jack Lothian; directed by MJ Basset.
–Episode #46 (season 5, episode 6)
Debut date: FRIDAY, MARCH 09 (10:00-10:50pm)
Lowry (Katherine Kelly) recruits Maya (Rhianne Barreto), a young jihadi, to test out the Novichok, and the team races to stop her before the gas is released on unsuspecting civilians. Yuri (Urs Rechn), a brutal hitman working for Borisovich (Peter Firth), is tasked with eliminating the members of Section 20. Dr. Markov (Daniel Cerqueira) faces a dilemma, while Lowry has a revelation. Written by Jack Lothian; directed by Debs Paterson.
–Episode #47 (season 5, episode 7)
Debut date: FRIDAY, MARCH 16 (10:00-10:50pm)
In order to keep pace with Lowry (Katherine Kelly), Section 20 looks to track down ex-CIA contractor Rachel Sheridan (Dervla Kirwan), with Wyatt (Daniel MacPherson) looking to win the confidence of her estranged daughter, Lila (Sai Bennett). Meanwhile, Jensen’s (Phil Dunster) desire to get closer to Novin (Alin Sumarwata) brings him into the field – and closer to danger. Written by Jack Lothian and Simon Allen; directed by Bill Eagles.
–Episode #48 (season 5, episode 8)
Debut date: FRIDAY, MARCH 23 (10:00-10:50pm)
Mac (Warren Brown) and Wyatt (Daniel MacPherson) close in on a “black site” harboring a terrorist of interest to Lowry (Katherine Kelly) – as well as Col. Parker (Corey Johnson). Back at work under Donovan’s (Nina Sosanya) watchful eye, Jensen (Phil Dunster) looks to crack a code involving Project Tenebrae. Written by Jack Lothian and Simon Allen; directed by Bill Eagles.
–Episode #49 (season 5, episode 9)
Debut date: FRIDAY, MARCH 30 (10:00-10:50pm)
The team races to deliver a package to Donovan (Nina Sosanya), but a familiar adversary causes them problems along the way. A startling revelation changes the game, forcing Reynolds (Roxanne McKee) to make a difficult choice. A cornered Novin (Alin Sumarwata) gets a reprieve from unexpected sources. Written by Jack Lothian; directed by MJ Basset.
A grieving widower asks his dysfunctional family to spend the holidays together and gets along when ALMOST CHRISTMAS debuts FRIDAY, MARCH 09 (8:05pm). The comedy stars Kimberly Elise, Omar Eggs, Danny Glover, Romany Malco, Mo’Nique, Nicole Ari Parker, J.B. Smoove, Gabrielle Union, Jessie T. Usher and D.C. Young Fly. Recounting the true story of Desmond Doss (Oscar nominee Andrew Garfield), who received the Medal of Honor after he refused to bear arms while serving in WWII, HACKSAW RIDGE debuts FRIDAY, MARCH 16 (7:35pm). Also nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture and Director (Mel Gibson), the film also stars Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Teresa Palmer, Hugo Weaving, Rachel Griffiths and Vince Vaughn. A couple (Anthony LaPaglia, Miranda Otto) whose own daughter was killed in a tragic accident welcome orphans into their home and are soon haunted by demented doll when ANNABELLE: CREATION debuts FRIDAY, MARCH 23 (8:10 pm). Samara Lee, Brad Greenquist, Lulu Wilson, Talitha Bateman and Stephanie Sigman also star. A suburban family believes the new neighbors are perfect – until they find themselves in the middle of a dangerous international operation in KEEPING UP WITH THE JONESES, debuting FRIDAY, MARCH 30 (8:10pm). The comedy stars Zach Galifianakis, Jon Hamm, Isla Fisher, Gal Gadot and Kevin Dunn, and is directed by Greg Mottola.
Next Month’s Tease: “oh my darlin’… oh, my darlin’” Pennyfeather? Will she be back?
San Jose was the clue last time and the answer is that it is in the heart of Silicon Valley. So, there you go. Catch the new season of SILICON VALLEY.
Final Clip: So you can make a comparison here is 2017’s THE BEGUILED.
You get the idea. Enjoy!