Watching: A British Rom-Com

And returning faves.

Author Headshot

By Margaret Lyons

Television Critic

Dear Watchers,

As perhaps the world’s biggest fan of skill-based reality contest shows, I dug this piece in the Los Angeles Times about the recent boom in creative competition series.

Have a fabulous week.

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I crave romance

Nikesh Patel, left, and Rose Matafeo in a scene from “Starstruck.”HBO Max

‘Starstruck’

When to watch: Arrives Thursday, on HBO Max.

The comedian Rose Matafeo created this six-episode charmer about a young woman named Jessie (Matafeo), who is stringing together side hustles in London when she meets and falls for Tom, a movie star (Nikesh Patel). It’s sort of a scrappier “Notting Hill,” and Jessie’s friend gushes that she’s living “fan nonfiction.”

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Some of the kinder mechanics of the show feel similar to those of “Lovesick,” “Crashing” or “Please Like Me.” It’s another other quirky comedy about people in their 20s approaching love and sex in sometimes self-destructive ways, while having festive dinner parties that seem aspirational if you are younger than the characters and bittersweetly immature if you are older. Great! But rom-coms are only as good as their big fights, and that’s where “Starstruck” shines. When Jessie and Tom’s incidental conflict blows up into a substantial argument, Jessie confuses confidence with defensiveness and Tom confuses generosity with being a pushover. The fights are real knockouts, and in ways that reveal so much.

If you liked Matafeo on “Taskmaster” or on her 2020 standup special, you’ll like “Starstruck.” The show has already been renewed for a second season.

Also this week

Tom Hiddleston, center, in a scene from “Loki.”Marvel Studios
  • Season 2 of “Ms. Fisher’s Modern Murder Mysteries” is streaming now on Acorn.
  • “The Bachelorette” returns for its 17th season Monday at 8 p.m. on ABC.
  • “Loki,” the latest entry in the Marvel TV world, premieres Wednesday, on Disney+.
  • The season finale of “Hacks” arrives Thursday, on HBO Max.
  • “Younger” limps to its series finale Thursday, on Hulu and Paramount+.

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When do my shows come back?

A scene from the upcoming second installment of “Lupin.”Netflix
  • “Betty”: June 11, HBO
  • “Lupin”: June 11, Netflix
  • “Tuca & Bertie”: June 13, Adult Swim
  • “Summer Camp Island”: June 17, HBO Max
  • “Evil”: June 20, Paramount+
  • “The Good Fight”: June 24, Paramount+
  • “Good Girls”: June 24, NBC
  • “Making It”: June 24, NBC
  • “Bosch”: June 25, Amazon
  • “Miracle Workers”: July 13, TBS
  • “Brooklyn Nine Nine”: Aug. 12, NBC
  • “Archer”: Aug. 25, FXX
  • “What We Do in the Shadows”: Sept. 2, FX
  • “American Crime Story”: Sept. 7, FX

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