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Canadian comic book artist Jeff Lemire's Netflix series among June highlights

Last Updated Jun 1, 2021 at 8:08 am EDT

Wonderstruck visions of a post-apocalyptic future and grounded comedies about modern-day problems give June some extra flavour on the biggest streaming platforms.

Here are this month’s film and TV highlights worth adding to your watch list:

“SWEET TOOTH”

In the future, hybrids born part human, part animal wander the forests in fear of being hunted by those who believe they’re carrying a virus threatening mankind. But one young boy, whose deer antlers make it impossible to blend in, is determined to find answers about his own existence. Embarking on a cross-country journey alongside a drifter, the pair begin a quest that’ll reveal new worlds they can’t even imagine. Based on the acclaimed comic books from Canadian artist Jeff Lemire, known for Gord Downie’s “Secret Path,” this vibrant eight-episode series ranks among Netflix’s most cinematic projects. (Netflix, June 4)

“BLINDSPOTTING”

Three years ago, independent film “Blindspotting” won over critics at the Sundance Film Festival. Now, the story is being adapted into a TV series that picks up shortly after the movie ended with a cast of many new characters. The storyline follows Ashley (Jasmine Cephas Jones), a young woman who’s staring down single motherhood after her boyfriend Miles (Rafael Casal), a main character in the original film, is sent to prison for five years on a drug charge. Moving in with his free-spirited yet occasionally overbearing mother (Helen Hunt), Ashley hits reset on her expectations as she gets her footing in Oakland’s inner city. Stylistically similar to its source material, “Blindspotting” uses flashes of poetry and dance to sprinkle the comedy-drama series with some extra surprises. (Crave/Starz, June 13, episodes weekly)

“BUMP”

With high school graduation on the horizon, the world seems to be coming off its tracks for Sydney, an exasperated teenager whose frayed relationship with her parents isn’t helping matters. But nothing can prepare her for the surprise of a lifetime when she discovers she’s been unknowingly pregnant and is going into labour. So begins this riotous half-hour Australian comedy about unplanned motherhood and parents who are just as unprepared to be grandparents. (CBC Gem, June 18)

“VENENO”

Spanish actress, singer and sex worker Cristina Ortiz Rodríguez – a.k.a. La Veneno — blazed trails for the transgender community in the late 1990s. First interviewed on the streets of Madrid by a local reporter who then thrust her in the spotlight, her no-holds-barred personality made her an overnight sensation on a popular late-night talk show. But as La Veneno became a household name, her life plunged into tragedy. Told with a pinch of fiction, this eight-episode Spanish-language series captures the flair of a star whose larger-than-life personality shattered barriers for the LGBTQ community. (Crave/HBO, June 24)

OTHER HIGHLIGHTS:

“LUCA” – A young boy, voiced by Jacob Tremblay, embarks on a summer adventure in a seaside town on the Italian Riviera while concealing that he’s really a sea monster. Pixar’s latest film was originally set for theatres before being rerouted to streaming. (Disney Plus, June 18)

“PHYSICAL” – Rose Byrne plays a dissatisfied housewife who reinvents herself as the mogul of an aerobics empire in the early 1980s. (Apple TV Plus, June 18, episodes weekly)

RETURNING SERIES: Netflix dives back into the turbulent romance of “Feel Good” (June 4), gripping heist thriller “Lupin” (June 11) and introduces a fresh batch of feisty singles ready to mingle on the reality series “Too Hot to Handle” (June 23). Disney Plus’s Star forges a new chapter in the LGBTQ series “Love, Victor” (June 18). And Crave’s HBO tier launches the second season of skateboard drama “Betty” (June 11) and an additional new episode of true-crime docuseries “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” (June 21). Amazon Prime Video marks the return of Anna Paquin as a cutthroat publicist in “Flack” (June 11).

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 1, 2021.

David Friend, The Canadian Press