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MATTHEW GILBERT | YOUR TV GPS

This week’s TV: Talking animals, Charles Schulz’s legacy, and Conan says goodbye . . . again

Conan O'Brien's 28-year run on late-night TV is coming to an end, at least for now. TBS's "Conan" airs its last episode Thursday.
Conan O'Brien's 28-year run on late-night TV is coming to an end, at least for now. TBS's "Conan" airs its last episode Thursday.Richard Shotwell

Your TV GPS, Globe TV critic Matthew Gilbert’s look at the week ahead in television, appears every Monday morning on BostonGlobe.com. Today’s column covers June 21-27.

GOODBYE AGAIN

Conan O’Brien is ending his talk show, TBS’s “Conan,” on Thursday night. Jack Black will be the final guest during the hourlong finale, which will air at 10 p.m.

Don’t fret, Conanfan types. He’ll be back in a different vehicle on HBO Max before too long. Indeed, he’s a staple in the entertainment world who has been on TV in some iteration for 28 years, and, until he stops working, he’ll probably always have some perch or another. His HBO Max series, with a format still unknown, will be his fourth go-round.

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O’Brien burst onto the late-night scene in 1993, when he took over “Late Night” from David Letterman. He was in a similar school of comedy as Letterman, with plenty of absurdity and irony. Then he took over “The Tonight Show” from Jay Leno, which ended in disaster when NBC gave his desk chair back to Leno after Leno’s nightly primetime talk show failed. There’s no accounting for taste.

O’Brien landed on cable, with TBS’s “Conan,” in 2010, and he has also launched the travel series “Conan Without Borders” and the podcast “Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend.” TBS has been a comfortable if less visible home for him, and he has thrived there. As a bonus, he has finally been able to have a live audience in recent weeks, and on Thursday fans will be there to help him say goodbye for now.

WHAT I’M WATCHING THIS WEEK

1. This one sounds like it calls for some significant pre-gaming. “When Nature Calls With Helen Mirren” features footage of animals in nature with comedians putting words in their mouths. The series, which premieres Thursday at 8 p.m. on ABC, is narrated by Helen Mirren, and it’s based on a British series called “Walk on the Wild Side.” Lions and tigers and bears, oh why?

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2. If you have a taste for true crime, a pair of major creeps, and pure sordidness, “Epstein’s Shadow: Ghislaine Maxwell” might be your cup of tea. The Peacock documentary series looks into the British socialite and her bond with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, as she awaits trial on sex trafficking charges. It premieres on Thursday.

Cecilia McGough, who lives with schizophrenia, is featured in PBS's "Mysteries of Mental Illness." While studying astrophysics in college, she founded the nonprofit Students with Psychosis.
Cecilia McGough, who lives with schizophrenia, is featured in PBS's "Mysteries of Mental Illness." While studying astrophysics in college, she founded the nonprofit Students with Psychosis.Courtesy of Pangloss Films

3. Mental illness is still cloaked in shame for many people, which is very sad and only makes it harder to treat. Some statistics say that one in four people will suffer from it during their lives. PBS’s four-part series, “Mysteries of Mental Illness,” will look into the science and history, include intimate portraits of people dealing with mental health issues, and focus on groundbreaking treatments such as electroconvulsive therapy, transcranial magnetic stimulation, and ketamine infusions. The series will be presented in two two-hour blocks, Tuesday and Wednesday at 9 p.m. on GBH 2.

4. On Friday, Apple TV+, which is the streaming home for all things “Peanuts,” is premiering a special called “Who Are You, Charlie Brown?” The documentary will take a look back at the origins of the characters and creator Charles Schulz’s legacy. Lupita Nyong’o narrates, and there will be interviews with Schulz’s friends and family, other cartoonists, and notable fans of the strip.

Mike Vogel and Sarah Shahi in "Sex/Life."
Mike Vogel and Sarah Shahi in "Sex/Life."AMANDA MATLOVICH/NETFLIX

5. A married suburban mother is having a midlife crisis, and she’s having fantasies about a hot old boyfriend from her wild-child days. “Sex/Life,” starring Sarah Shahi and based on BB Easton’s book “44 Chapters About 4 Men,” sounds a bit raunchy, y’all. It premieres Friday on Netflix, featuring Mike Vogel as the husband.

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6. Last year, HBO ran a true-crime series about the late Michelle McNamara’s search for the Golden State Killer — and about the people who are obsessed with unsolved crimes. Called “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark,” it was a disturbing look not just at the crimes, and the procedural side of solving them, but at the survivors of the rapes and the families of those murdered. Now, on Monday at 10 p.m., HBO is going to run a new episode that explains the developments in the case since the series aired.

CHANNEL SURFING

“The Good Fight” The fifth season premieres, with Cush Jumbo and Delroy Lindo leaving the show and Mandy Patinkin and Wayne Brady joining up. Paramount+, Thursday

“RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars” The series moves to a new outlet for its sixth season. Paramount+, Thursday

“The Choe Show” Artist David Choe hosts a show in which he paints a portrait of the guest he is interviewing. FX, Friday

From left: Sarah Kameela Impey, Faith Omole, Juliette Motamed, Anjana Vasan, and Lucie Shorthouse in Peacock's "We Are Lady Parts."
From left: Sarah Kameela Impey, Faith Omole, Juliette Motamed, Anjana Vasan, and Lucie Shorthouse in Peacock's "We Are Lady Parts."Saima Khalid/Peacock

RECENTLY REVIEWED

“Physical” Rose Byrne’s dark and compelling series is set during the aerobics craze of the 1980s. Apple TV+

“Us” A bittersweet two-part “Masterpiece” about a middle-aged couple traveling in Europe while on the brink of divorce. GBH 2

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“Feel Good” The second and final season is textured, funny, and fitted with a clear theme: trauma and recovery from it. Netflix

“Kevin Can F**k Himself” A inventive satire about sitcoms and sexism starring a charming Annie Murphy. AMC, AMC+

“We Are Lady Parts” An entertaining British comedy about the members of an all-female Muslim punk band. Peacock

“Starstruck” A rom-com about the relationship between Rose Matafeo’s London twentysomething and a movie star. HBO Max

“Lisey’s Story” A plodding Stephen King adaptation starring Julianne Moore and Clive Owen. Apple TV+

“In Treatment” A decent revival of the classic therapy series, this time starring Uzo Aduba. HBO

“Hacks” Jean Smart shines plays as a legendary comic mentoring a young comedy writer. HBO Max



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