Friday TV: Netflix’ New ‘GLOW’ Shines

GlowThe prim and petite Alison Brie would seem exactly the wrong person to star in “GLOW” (Netflix streaming), a new series based on the classic 80s series “Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling.” While that late night show celebrated tough and unconventional women in the ring, Brie seems too proper to be the center.

That’s something she also has to prove in the series. Executive produced by Jenji Kohan, creator of “Orange is the New Black” and “Weeds,” it’s full of humor and sharp commentary on female opportunities in the 80s; Brie’s surrounded by a diverse and interesting cast as well. And it’s great to see Marc Maron back on TV as the convincing crank organizing the league. This may well be your show of the summer, if you don’t tear through it too quickly.

Vintage Hulk Hogan pops up in the first episode of “Glow,” but is the basis of the documentary “Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press” (Netflix, streaming) which chronicles the wrestler’s suit against Gawker Media after a sex tape was released. Bankrolling Hogan’s defense, it turned out, was a billionaire intent on bringing down the company for previously outing him. Brian Knappenberger’s documentary shows the implication of that in his stand-alone documentary.

Alvin Ailey, Cyndi Lauper, activist Cleve Jones and the creators of “Will and Grace” are among those feted at the “Logo Trailblazer Awards” (Logo, VH1, 9 p.m.) which features appearances from Don Lemon, Debra Messing, Darren Criss, Tituss Burgess and Jussie Smollett.

It comes after “RuPaul’s Drag Race” (VH1, 8 p.m.) crowns America’s Next Drag Superstar in what may have been its widest-seen season, its ninth.

“The Originals” (The CW, 8 p.m.) reaches its fourth season finale.

A new “Real Time with Bill Maher” (HBO, 10 p.m.0 hosts Maajid Nawaz, Charlie Sykes, Bianna Golodryga, Bradley Whitford and Richard Painter.

Silas Howard’s documentary “More than T” (Showtime, 7 p.m.) looks at several transgender and non gender-conforming people.

A new season starts for the comedy “Playing House” (USA, 11 p.m.) with a couple of episodes — all eight episodes of the new season will be available on demand starting Saturday. This season starts with some funny stuff but makes way for darker subject matter.

The format is adjusted a bit on “CMT Crossroads” (CMT, 10 p.m.), allowing Earth Wind & Fire to collaborate with a number of country artists including Martina McBride, Sara Evans, Darius Rucker, Lady Antebellum and Rascal Flatts.

The Groundhog’s Day ploy on “Dark Matter” (Syfy, 9 p.m.) is called a time loop.

Bread consumes “The Great British Baking Show” (PBS, 9 p.m., check local listings).

The death this week of Otto Warmbier, the U.S. student returned from captivity in North Korea with a coma, is covered on “20/20” (ABC, 10 p.m.).

“Dateline” (NBC, ) looks into the 2012 shooting death of a Utah woman that was reported by a suicide but led to the eventual arrest and conviction of her husband.

A second season starts for “Bizaardvark” (Disney, 9 p.m.), with the first day at public school.

An evil genie bedevils “Wynonna Earp” (Syfy, 10 p.m.).

Chantel and Pedro look at their story in “90 Day Fiance” (TLC, 9 p.m.).

Olympic medalist Laurie Hernandez guest stars on “Stuck in the Middle” (Disney, 8 p.m.).

“Ginormous Food” (Food, 8 p.m.) goes to Cleveland.

“Josh Gates’ Destination Truth” (Travel 9 p.m.) goes to Jordan and South Carolina; then at 10, it’s off to China and Israel.

The Friday night European Vacation theme continues on Turner Classic Movies with a night of Italian excursions in “Rome Adventure” (8 p.m.), “Come September” (10:15 p.m.), “Buona Sera, Mrs. Campbell” (12:30 a.m.), “Roman Holiday” (2:45 a.m.) and “Gidget Goes to Rome” (5 a.m.).

Baseball includes Angels at Boston (MLB, 7 p.m.).

The College World Series has Oregon State vs. LSU (ESPN, 3 p.m.) and Florida vs. TCU (ESPN, 8 p.m.).

In WNBA action, it’s Washington at Minnesota (ESPN2, 8 p.m.).

They’re still racing in Day 4 of the Royal Ascot (NBC Sports, 8:30 a.m.).

Daytime Talk

Kelly and Ryan: Laura Prepon, Steven Yeun, Selby Drummond, Michael Franti & Spearhead (rerun). The View: Kumail Nanjiani, Emily V. Gordon. The Talk: Leslie Jones, Daniel Goddard, Paul Shaffer, Carnie Wilson. Harry Connick: David Boreanaz, Ryan Oakes (rerun). Ellen DeGeneres: Vince Vaughn, Priyanka Chopra, Joseph (rerun). Wendy Williams: Ashlee Glazer, Devyn Dimone (rerun). The Real: John Salley, Mel B (rerun).

Late Talk

Stephen Colbert: Kevin Hart, Ali Wentworth, the War on Drugs (rerun). Jimmy Kimmel: Diane Keaton, Lonzo and LaVar Ball, Phoenix (rerun). Jimmy Fallon: Keanu Reeves, Cat Deeley, Ali Kolbert. Seth Meyers, Elisabeth Moss, John Mclaney, Brett Eldridge, Eric Moore (rerun). carson Daly: Sofia Boutella, Potty Mouth, Emily V. Gordon, Arielle Kebbel (rerun).

 

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