‘Legion’ Season 2, ‘6 Balloons,’ the Return of Tracy Morgan, and More TV You Must Watch This Week

Plus: the return of Tracy Morgan, a Benedict Cumberbatch family drama, and a new mystery sci-fi thriller.

Legion Season 2

Plus: a Benedict Cumberbatch family drama, a new mystery sci-fi thriller, and a documentary about MLK’s final days.

A new month kicks off with the live revival of a 1970s rock opera Broadway classic, followed by an Ian McEwan book adaptation starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Kelly Macdonald. There’s also a new mystery sci-fi thriller from the creators of MTV’s Scream and documentaries on Martin Luther King Jr. and freedom of speech. Tracy Morgan makes his return to TV comedy, while FX’s eccentric superhero series finally delivers its second season. Last but not least, the week wraps up with a Netflix family drama featuring Abbi Jacobson and Dave Franco.

To help you keep track of the most important programs over the next seven days, here’s our guide to everything worth watching, whether it’s on broadcast, cable, or streaming for March 25th – 31st (all times Eastern):

Jesus Christ Superstar Live! (NBC, Sunday 8pm)

There is something very fitting (and kind of meta) about reviving a 1970s rock opera musical about the last days of Jesus’s life on the day commemorating his resurrection. Following the tradition set by Deep Purple’s Ian Gillan and Yvonne Elliman in the original concept album, NBC’s one-night live rendition of the musical features a cast heavy with musical star power: John Legend stars as Jesus, Sara Bareilles is Mary Magdalene, Alice Cooper plays King Herod, and Hamilton’s Brandon Victor Dixon portrays the controversial antagonist Judas Iscariot. If you, like our own Matthew Monagle, hold certain affection for the play, or even if you’re uninitiated in Broadway classics, Jesus Christ Superstar Live! is a good way to wrap up Easter Sunday.

The Child in Time (PBS, Sunday 9pm)

It’s a parent’s worst nightmare: losing sight of your child for a split second and the next realizing that they have banished into thin air. Based on the novel of the same name by Ian McEwan, The Child in Time explores the loss of Stephen (Benedict Cumberbatch), a successful children’s book author, and his wife Julie (Kelly Macdonald) after their three-year-old daughter Kate goes missing from a busy supermarket. With some surreal twists and a few bends on time, the film delves into the devastation caused by senseless loss, the nature of memory and grief and the hope for reconciliation. Tip: keep a box of tissues close at hand.

King in the Wilderness (HBO, Monday 8pm)

By 1967, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had already led the Montgomery Bus Boycott, addressed the seminal 1963 “I Have A Dream” speech, and witnessed the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the 1965 Voting Rights Act — all events largely documented in multiple media and formats. Bu the last, and least chronicled, 18 months of his existence were probably the most difficult and challenging of his life. Directed by Peter Kunhardt (Jim: The James Foley Story), this HBO documentary looks back at King’s last year and a half, revealing a conflicted leader standing between the criticism from the Black Power movement and the Lyndon B. Johnson administration. Interviews with Joan Baez, Andrew Young, Jesse Jackson, Harry Belafonte, John Lewis, and Bernard Lafayette help piece together the story of the legacy of Dr. King, right on time for the 50th anniversary of his death.

The Crossing (ABC, Monday 10pm)

If you still haven’t found something to fill the void left by The Leftovers last year, or you’ve been craving mysterious thrillers infused with a touch of sci-fi in a similar vein to Lost, The Crossing offers an attractive alternative. Set in the small fishing town of Port Canaan in the Oregon coast, the show revolves around a particular event: 500 refugees suddenly wash upon the shores, but only 47 survive. All of them fleeing a war that will destroy America nearly two centuries into the future. Oh, and some of them are genetically altered humans. Created by the team behind MTV’s Scream, The Crossing gathers Steve Zahn, Natalie Martinez, Jay Karnes, Sandrine Holt, Rick Gomez, Luc Roderique, and Georgina Haig in this intriguing mystery drama.

When God Sleeps (PBS, Monday 10pm)

In this day and age, freedom of speech is often misunderstood. But stories like that of Shahin Najafi put things back into  perspective and serve as a reminder of what it actually entails. Directors Till Schauder and Sara Nodjoumi follow this Iranian musician, forced into hiding in Germany after his satirical song criticizing the oppression of women and human rights abuses triggered hardline clerics to issue a fatwa for his death. As Shahin refuses to back down despite the threats, he also tries to establish a relationship with a woman whose grandfather was handpicked to be the first Prime Minister of Iran. The latest installment of Independent Lens, it’s a punk rock doc wrapped around a star-crossed lovers’ romance.

Legion (FX, Tuesday 10pm)

A year is more than enough time to recover from the mind-twisting experience that is Legion’s debut season, so our bodies are ready for more surrealist, befuddling, visually-stunning goodness — and more outlandish dancing sequences, of course. After consistently messing with our heads throughout eight episodes, the show left us hanging in suspense after Oliver Bird, now a host for the Shadow King, drove off southbound, while a mysterious orb abducted David Haller (Dan Stevens). Season 2 picks up 12 months later and finds David with no clear recollections of his time away, while the team at Summerland works alongside Division Three to stop Farouk, who is infecting more people. Navid Negahban (Homeland) joins the cast as a new incarnation of the Shadow King, alongside Stevens and fellow series regulars Rachel Keller, Aubrey Plaza, Jean Smart, Bill Irwin, Amber Midthunder, Jeremie Harris, and Jemaine Clement. Fair warning: this trip further down the rabbit hole is not for the faint of mind.

The Last O.G. (TBS, Tuesday 10:30pm)

As Tracy Morgan finally returns to TV comedy after his life-threatening accident, his new character Tray also makes his triumphant return home after he is released from prison for good behavior after a 15-year stint. However, things have changed a lot. Upon arriving to his newly gentrified Brooklyn neighborhood, he discovers that his former girlfriend Shay (Tiffany Haddish) has married a well-off white man (Ryan Gaul) who is raising the kids (Dante Hoagland and Taylor Mosby) Tray never knew he fathered. Wanting to connect with his children, but lacking the money to support them (or himself), he falls back on the skills he learned in prison to make ends meet. Co-created and produced by Jordan Peele, the 10-episode season also star Cedric the Entertainer. How’s that for comedy pedigree?

6 Balloons (Netflix, Friday)

Playing a serious role in a drama is kind of a rite of passage for comedians wanting to prove their acting chops and range. Dave Franco (The Little Hours) and Broad City’s Abbi Jacobson now join the ranks of comedy actors who have traded laughs for tears with 6 Balloons. The film follows Katie (Jacobson), a loyal sister struggling with the relapse of her heroin-addict brother, Seth (Franco), as they drive through the night around Los Angeles in search for a detox center, accompanied by Seth’s toddler daughter. But things take a turn for the worse. Written and directed by Marja-Lewis Ryan (The Four-Faced Liar) and  based on the experience of producer Samantha Houseman, this drama arrives on Netflix after premiering at SXWS earlier in March.

6 Balloons Netflix

SUNDAY

Bob’s Burgers S8E12 “The Hurt Soccer” (FOX, 7:30pm)

Counterpart S1E10 “No Man’s Land, Part Two” (Starz, 8pm) — season finale

Instinct S1E3 “Secrets and Lies” (CBS, 8pm)

Our Cartoon President S1E9 “Church and State” (Showtime, 8pm)

Jesus Christ Superstar Live! (NBC, 8pm) — live musical event

The Simpsons S29E14 “Fears of a Clown” (FOX, 8pm)

Brooklyn Nine-Nine S5E14 “The Box” (Fox, 8:30pm)

Ash vs. Evil Dead S3E6 “Tales from the Rift” (Starz, 9pm)

Family Guy S16E14 “Veteran Guy” (FOX, 9pm)

The Child in Time (PBS, 9pm) — movie premiere

The Walking Dead S8E14 “Still Gotta Mean Something” (AMC, 9pm)

The Last Man on Earth S4E13 “Release the Hounds” (FOX, 9:30pm)

Deception S1E4 “Divination” (ABC, 10pm)

Silicon Valley S5E2 “Reorientation” (HBO, 10pm)

Trust S1E2 “Lone Star” (FX, 10pm)

Barry S1E2 “Chapter Two: Use It” (HBO, 10:30pm)

MONDAY

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow S3E17 “Guest Starring John Noble” (The CW, 8pm)

King in the Wilderness (HBO, 8pm) — documentary premiere

One Strange Rock S1E2 (Nat Geo, 9pm)

The Terror S1E3 “The Ladder” (AMC, 9pm)

Living Biblically S1E6 “Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness” (CBS, 9:30pm)

Good Girls S1E6 “A View From the Top” (NBC, 10pm)

The Crossing S1E1 (ABC, 10pm) — series premiere

When God Sleeps (PBS, 10pm) — documentary premiere

TUESDAY

NCIS S15E19 “The Numerical Limit” (CBS, 8pm)

Roseanne S10E3 “Roseanne Gets the Chair” (ABC, 8pm)  

Black Lightning S1E11 “Black Jesus: The Book of Crucifixion” (The CW, 9pm)

LA to Vegas S1E11 “Jacked Up” (Fox, 9pm)

Legion S2E1 “Chapter 9” (FX, 10pm) — season premiere

For the People S1E4 “The Library Fountain” (ABC, 10pm)

Rise S1E4 “Victory Party” (NBC, 10pm)

Unsolved: The Murders of Tupac and The Notorious B.I.G. S1E6 “East Coast, West Coast” (USA, 10pm)

The Last O.G. S1E1 (TBS, 10:30pm) — series premiere

WEDNESDAY

National Treasure: Kiri S1 (Hulu) — miniseries premiere

The Looming Tower S1E8 “A Very Special Relationship” (Hulu)

The Blacklist S5E17 “Anna-Gracia Duerte” (NBC, 8pm)

I Am MLK Jr. (Paramount, 9pm) — documentary premiere

Modern Family S9E18 “Daddy Issues” (ABC, 9pm)

Criminal Minds S13E19 “Ex Parte” (CBS, 10pm)

Designated Survivor S2E16 “Fallout” (ABC, 10pm)

Hap and Leonard S3E5 “Mambo No. 5” (Sundance, 10pm)

Krypton S1E3 “The Rankless Initiative” (Syfy, 10pm)

The Americans S6E2 “Tchaikovsky” (FX, 10pm)

Back S1E5 (Sundance, 11pm)

THURSDAY

Gotham S4E17 “Mandatory Brunch Meeting” (FOX, 8pm)

Grey’s Anatomy S14E18 “Hold Back the River” (ABC, 8pm)

RuPaul’s Drag Race S10E3 (VH1, 8pm)

Supernatural S13E17 “The Thing” (The CW, 8pm)

Superstore S3E18 “Local Vendors Day” (NBC, 8pm)

Arrow S6E17 “Brothers in Arms” (The CW, 9pm)

Project Runway All Stars S6E13 (Lifetime, 9pm) – season finale

Station 19 S1E4 “Reignited” (ABC, 9pm)

Will & Grace S9E16 “It’s a Family Affair” (NBC, 9pm) – season finale

Atlanta S2E6 “Teddy Perkins” (FX, 10pm)

S.W.A.T S1E16 “Payback” (CBS, 10pm)

Scandal S7E16 “People Like Me” (ABC, 10pm)

FRIDAY

6 Balloons (Netflix) – movie premiere

Amateur (Netflix) – movie premiere

The 4th Company (Netflix) – movie premiere

Money Heist S2 (Netflix) – season premiere

My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman S1E4 (Netflix)

Troy: Fall of a City S1 (Netflix) – miniseries premiere

Once Upon a Time S7E16 “Breadcrumbs” (ABC, 8pm)

Jane The Virgin S4E15 “Chapter Seventy-Nine” (The CW, 9pm)

SATURDAY

Paterno (HBO, 8pm) – movie premiere

Ransom S2E1 “Three Wishes” (CBS, 8pm) – season premiere

Pocket-sized cinephile analyzing things as a hobby.