HBO's Divorce is back for a third season tonight, and as the network just announced, this season will be the last for the series. Which is too bad really, as it boasts some excellent talent, from writer Sharon Horgan to stars like Parker, Thomas Haden Church and Molly Shannon all turning in great performances.
If the series has an achilles heel, it's that it's not Sex and the City. As Sarah Jessica Parker's return to series comedy (on HBO, no less), the comparisons were inevitable, and expectations out-sized. In a weird way, Divorce has acted as a kind of perspective-giving object for the success of SATC -- like putting a penny in a photograph of something so you can more accurately assess its size. From that perspective, yes: Sex and the City was a huge cultural phenomenon, and Divorce is not. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't appreciate its more modest charms for what they are.
SEASON PREMIERE: As the third season of Divorce kicks off, Frances (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Robert (Thomas Haden Church) work to establish their newly independent lives (complete with new love interests), while Diane (Molly Shannon) prepares to visit her husband Nick (Tracy Letts) in prison. 10:00 PM ET on HBO
NEW EPISODE: The delicious soap operatics of ABC's Grand Hotel continue this week as Danny (Lincoln Younes) digs around for more clues on Sky's disappearance, and Alicia (Denyse Tontz) & Gigi (Roselyn Sanchez) clash over hotel business. 10:00 PM ET on ABC
NEW EPISODE: The jury is still out on a Lauren- and Kristin-free version of The Hills, but at the very least The Hills: New Beginnings is a fascinating experiment. The old cast members like Audrina, Heidi, Spencer, and Brody all seem to be acting in a pageant version of their lives, while new cast members like Mischa Barton and Brandon Lee (Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee's son) feel like they're in more of a Real Housewives-style show. That said, everybody's new faces look great. 10:00 PM ET on MTV
SPECIAL PRESENTATION: Netflix continues to come on strong with the stand-up comedy specials. Dropping today is Katherine Ryan: Glitter Room, in which the comedian takes the reins of her second Netflix special to touch on subjects like sex, relatonships, and Celine Dion. Streaming on Netflix
Joe Reid is the Managing Editor at Primetimer and co-host of the This Had Oscar Buzz podcast. His work has appeared in Decider, NPR, HuffPost, The Atlantic, Slate, Polygon, Vanity Fair, Vulture, The A.V. Club and more.