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At last, 9 returning TV shows to look forward to this spring and summer

Elisabeth Moss and Max Minghella in Hulu's "The Handmaid's Tale"
Elisabeth Moss and Max Minghella in Hulu's "The Handmaid's Tale"Sophie Giraud/Hulu

“Succession,” usually a summer series, has not been given a return date yet. But don’t give up hope, all you lovers of HBO’s brutal comedy of the rich, powerful, and snarky. Season three will definitely premiere at some point this year, picking up in the wake of son Kendall’s betrayal of his ornery father.

And that’s life, circa 2021. The pandemic has changed everything, including the production schedules of many of our favorite series. Right now, in the midst of mass vaccination, the networks, cablers, and streamers are getting back on their feet, and a number of returns have been officially announced. Here are some favorites due back in the near future.


“The Handmaid’s Tale” (Hulu, April 28): The fourth season begins, but don’t start hoping — or dreading — that it will be the end of Resistance June’s saga. The show, one of TV’s most exquisitely filmed series, with superlative production design, has already been renewed for a fifth round. Will the show be easier to watch during the Biden-Harris administration? McKenna Grace, who is 14, joins the cast as Mrs. Keyes, the rebellious teenage wife of a much older Commander.

Billy Porter as Pray Tell in "Pose" on FX
Billy Porter as Pray Tell in "Pose" on FXMichael Parmelee/FX

“Pose” (FX, May 2): A few recent shows, including “GLOW,” “The Deuce,” and “It’s a Sin,” have looked back at the devastating early years of AIDS. But none has done it with the emotional power of “Pose,” which has focused in on the communities that were first affected by HIV and often ignored. The 1980s- and early 1990s-set drama, with its groundbreaking portrayals of trans women and its noteworthy use of trans actresses, is returning for a shortened third and final round. The season will be seven episodes long, and most of the cast members are returning, including Mj Rodriguez, Indya Moore, Dominique Jackson, and Billy Porter.


“The Girlfriend Experience” (Starz, May 2): The Steven Soderbergh-produced anthology drama, so cool and sleek, hasn’t been seen since 2017. The new third season will zero in on a neuroscientist working in London’s tech industry, helping to develop an app that revolves around human desire. To do field research for her work, she becomes an escort and provides the titular encounters. Julia Goldani Telles (she was daughter Whitney on “The Affair”) stars, and Anja Marquardt takes over as writer and director.

“Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet” (Apple TV+, May 7): The first season of this likable high-tech workplace comedy from Rob McElhenney, Charlie Day, and Megan Ganz of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” was a treat. About the gang of nuts who run an extremely popular video game, it’s a little bit “Silicon Valley,” a little bit “The Office,” and a little bit “Billions.” McElhenney returns for season 2 as the ego-driven, insecure boss, along with Danny Pudi, Charlotte Nicdao, and F. Murray Abraham. Special guest: Snoop Dogg.

“Shrill” (Hulu, May 7): Aidy Bryant’s very fine and highly bingeable comedy, based on Lindy West’s memoir about how our culture expects women to be small and compliant, is coming to an end with season 3. And that’s good news; I’d hate to see it stretch too far. Single again after dumping Ryan, Bryant’s Annie will be juggling love interests (including one played by Cameron Britton, best known as serial killer Edmund Kemper on “Mindhunter”) and hanging with her best friend, played by the wonderful Lolly Adefope.


Uzo Aduba and John Benjamin Hickey in season 4 of the HBO series "In Treatment."
Uzo Aduba and John Benjamin Hickey in season 4 of the HBO series "In Treatment." Suzanne Tenner/HBO

“In Treatment” (HBO, May 23): No, I’m not doing the time warp. The exquisite series, formerly starring Gabriel Byrne, is returning for a fourth season featuring Uzo Aduba as a prominent Los Angeles-area therapist. (Please, please, please be good; the first three seasons were classics.) She’ll treat patients across 24 sessions — I mean episodes — with a release schedule of four per week. The cast includes Joel Kinnaman, Anthony Ramos, Liza Colón-Zayas, John Benjamin Hickey, and Quintessa Swindell. By the way, the pandemic will be included in the story line.

“The Chi” (Showtime, May 23): Police brutality takes a more prominent role in season 4 of the drama, a group portrait of a Black community from political office to street corner. On Twitter, show creator Lena Waithe said that the new episodes of season 4 are “all about love” but also “about protests and it’s about finding your voice and knowing how to use it.” Additions to the cast will include social media personality Tabitha Brown and Jason Weaver.

“The Kominsky Method” (Netflix, May 28): Former series regular Alan Arkin is not in this six-episode third and final season, and I have my suspicions — but absolutely no official information — about how creator Chuck Lorre will write Arkin’s character out of the story line. Yup, that; the show is, after all, about mortality. Kathleen Turner — Michael Douglas’s costar in “Romancing the Stone,” “The Jewel of the Nile,” and “The War of the Roses” — will return as a regular for the final stretch. Sarah Baker is also back as Mindy, as is Paul Reiser as her ponytailed boyfriend.


From left: Ramona Young, Lee Rodriguez, and Maitreyi Ramakrishnan in Mindy Kaling's "Never Have I Ever" on Netflix.
From left: Ramona Young, Lee Rodriguez, and Maitreyi Ramakrishnan in Mindy Kaling's "Never Have I Ever" on Netflix.Isabella B. Vosmikova/Netflix © 2021

“Never Have I Ever” (Netflix, July): The charming coming-of-age comedy from Mindy Kaling is about the high school struggles and triumphs of actress Maitreyi Ramakrishnan’s first-generation Indian American, Devi. It will return for its second season at some point in July, with Common onboard as a doctor who works with Devi’s widowed mother.

Matthew Gilbert can be reached at matthew.gilbert@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.