What’s Trending On TV: Outlander Returns, South Park Tackles Protesting, and NFL Ratings

Each week we will bring you the latest in television news, episode trailers, and promotional news. From what’s streaming this week to the best scenes from hit series, we’ve got you covered.

When I was in high school, I took Psych 101. I don’t remember most of it. My mind was probably on who to vote for in the Top 10 of TRL or changing my LG Razor ringtone. I remember the chapter on love and infatuation. One of the key elements to sustaining both was proximity. The new season of Starz’s amorous drama Outlander tragically immerses both romantic leads into an extreme abyss of separation. The series tells the story of Claire Beauchamp, a World War II nurse who gets transported to 1743 Scotland. She encounters many obstacles in the past including her British heritage in a time of war, her 1945 husband’s ancestors, dangerous run ins with Scottish clans, and inquisitions about her identity. Season three picked up on Sunday right where the season two finale left off. After two seasons of navigating through the perils of 1743, Claire has returned to 20th century.

The last year of her life has been transformed into painfully stirring souvenirs which she carries daily. In 1945, her husband Frank Randall continues to struggle with the isolation and emotional chasm that has sprung between them since his wife’s return.  After some time and questioning, he fully accepts that Claire was transported to the past. At season’s two end he made her promise to leave the journeys of 1743 in the texts of history and let it all go.  However, her marriage to James Fraser, the loss of a child, her current pregnancy, and her failure to assuage the bloody war between Scotland & England is ever-present. Claire’s return to present times is intriguing. Even though she has been propelled into a future of progress and modernity, her character’s way of living has regressed in so many areas.  She has finds little respect for her passion of medicine and the post-war gender roles of 1945  are more stifling than ever. She has gone from nursing men on the battlefield and dining with French aristocrats to going to war with a gas stove.

The grapples with the change of scenery are nothing in comparison to her belief that James Fraser has died and battle and that she will never see him again. Viewers are fully aware that James is in fact alive and has returned home to waste away his years without her. While watching the season’s opening episode the concept of proximity came back to me. Claire and Frank, linked by physical closeness and time, are farther apart than ever. All the while James is in 1743 pinning after a woman who in not only across an ocean but in another sea of time entirely. The new season’s narrative will be shaped by the mirrored emotional distance between all three of these characters. Proximity may be a deciding factor for upholding of affection but for these protagonists, who have varying degrees of it, its longing that will be a central key to moving on.


The Good Place season 2 returns on Wednesday, September 20th. NBC has released a speak peek at the Kristen Bell and Ted Danson led series. The show premiered with 8 million viewers.  By the end of the season less than half of their audience was still tuned it. The network is hoping after its big finale reveal that the show’s popularity will surge again.

South Park has a history of tackling current and prominent news issues in society. Season 21 will premiere on Wednesday, September 13th. The episode titled “White People Renovating Houses” includes an episode description of “Protestors armed with tiki torches and confederate flags take to the streets of South Park. Randy comes to grips with what it means to be white in today’s society.” Watch a clip of the episode below:

Grown-ish continues to add characters and casting updates to its spinoff series. Several days ago it was reporters that R&B sister duo Chloe x Halle has been added to the show. Luka Sabbat has also been added to the 13-episode broadcast that will make its Freeform debut in early 2018.

– Paleyfest announced that there will be a reunion panel for the HBO famed series Oz on Sunday, October 15th. The full fall schedule for TV panel series includes:

Friday, Oct. 6: Netflix’s Black Mirror
Saturday, Oct. 7: Fox’s Family Guy
Sunday, Oct. 8: CBS All Access’ Star Trek: Discovery
Monday, Oct. 9: ABC’s Black-ish: A Conversation with Tracee Ellis Ross
Tuesday, Oct. 10: NBC’ Late Night With Seth Meyers
Thursday, Oct. 12: TBS’ Full Frontal With Samantha Bee
Sunday, Oct. 15: HBO’s Oz reunion
Monday, Oct. 16: CBS’ Blue Bloods

– ABC announced that Robin Givens will join the Once Upon A Time cast this season. The actress will star as Princess Tiana’s (Mekia Cox) mother on the Disney themed series.

Blindspot is set to return to NBC this fall for the third season. Producers recently announced that the show will be adding Shades of Blue Krisitna Reyes to the cast. The identity crisis and action series returns Friday, Oct. 27 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.

– Actress Gina Rodriguez will be developing a pair of Latino centered series for both CBS and the CW. The CBS series will be called Have Mercy. It will follow a doctor who loses her ability to practice medicine when she emigrates to Miami. She begins treating people in her makeshift apartment clinic. Rodriguez’s CW show will follow the life of a young teen who surprisingly finds out he’s undocumented.

– Hurricane Irma decidedly effected TV ratings last week for obvious reasons. Nielsen stated that the company couldn’t 100% reflect all of the ratings for certain television events. However one of the most talked about and hyped events was counted. The NFL opener ratings continued to fall after posting a 14.6 rating. Last year the season opener netted a 16.5 rating. This is the fourth consecutive year for the NFL numbers slump.

Promo of the Week

(Vice Principals Season 2 kicks of Sunday on HBO at 10 PM Est.)

Shock and Jaw Dropping Moment of the Week

When I was in Europe I saw commercial for prostitutes. One minute I was watching a Gatorade workout promo and the next there’s a person on the screen asking if I want them to come over. I said to myself, “what in the world do they have going on over here?” This moment was apparently a blimp on the shock radar. Recently I came across the Channel 4 show Naked Attraction. The show’s concept is simple: a clothed person picks between several naked people to go on a date with. “WHAT IN THE WORLD DO THEY HAVE GOING ON OVER HERE?” The dating show reveals piece by piece certain parts of a person’s body. The last elimination is, you guessed it, their private parts. To all my UK people: Y’all nasty!

You can follow Candis McLean on Twitter (@CandisRMcLean) and e-mail her at Follow Philly Influencer on Twitter (@PHL_Influencer), Facebook and Instagram.

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