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What’s on TV Wednesday: ‘Mrs. America’ and ‘The Main Event’ | Press "Enter" to skip to content

What’s on TV Wednesday: ‘Mrs. America’ and ‘The Main Event’

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MRS. AMERICA Stream on FX on Hulu. Cate Blanchett plays the conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly in this new mini-series, which revisits the fights for and against the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s. On the “against” side is Schlafly, a self-described housewife who spent the decade campaigning against the E.R.A., which would have amended the Constitution to legally codify equality between women and men. Fighting her on the “for” side are a cadre of figures from the left, including Gloria Steinem (Rose Byrne), Shirley Chisholm (Uzo Aduba), Betty Friedan (Tracey Ullman) and Bella Abzug (Margo Martindale). The show tells stories from both sides, as it chronicles events leading up to the defeat of the E.R.A. — a defeat, led by Schlafly, that had lasting effects. “Love her or hate her, you cannot not take away that she was extraordinary,” the series’s creator, Dahvi Waller, a former “Mad Men” writer, said in a recent interview with The New York Times. “And if you find yourself rooting for her and hate yourself for it, that’s also fun.”

THE MAIN EVENT (2020) Stream on Netflix. In “The Main Event,” an 11-year-old boy uses superhuman abilities to defeat school bullies — and then professional wrestlers. A surreal comedy geared toward families, the film centers on Leo (Seth Carr), a young wrestling fan who discovers a mask that gives him supernatural strength. With his newfound power, he enters a pro wrestling competition, where his adult opponents underestimate both his physical abilities (his body weight appears roughly equal to that of his adult opponents’ left legs) and his determination.

THE FITS (2016) Stream on Criterion Channel; rent on Amazon, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu and YouTube. An 11-year-old girl flits between boxing and dancing in this indie drama, the first feature from the filmmaker Anna Rose Holmer. The girl, Toni (Royalty Hightower), spends most of her time at a recreational center in Cincinnati, where she boxes and trains with her older brother (Da’Sean Minor). But after she gets a glimpse of a local dance team, her interests begin to expand — setting into motion what Manohla Dargis referred to in her review for The Times as a “dreamy, beautifully syncopated coming-of-age tale.” Holmer, Dargis wrote, “leads with atmosphere and space (including that landscape called the human face), and tends to let the sumptuously textured visuals and intermittent blasts of percussive music express what the characters don’t.”

WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS 10 p.m. on FX. Bloodsucking and bathroom humor return in the second season of “What We Do in the Shadows.” Born of Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi’s mockumentary film of the same name, the TV series concerns a group of vampire roommates navigating undead life on Staten Island. Wednesday night’s Season 2 premiere begins with a series of deaths — including an unfortunate impalement. “The show is funny and silly,” Paul Simms, one of the show’s executive producers, said in an interview with The Times last year. “But it is about the sadness of eternal life.”


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