For those still grieving “Better Call Saul,” there is a balm coming your way. Bob Odenkirk is returning to AMC for another series, this one a midlife crisis dramedy called “Straight Man.” It’s based on the 1997 novel by Richard Russo about the chair of an English department, to be played by Odenkirk. It’s set at an underfunded college in the Pennsylvania rust belt.
The supporting cast will include Mireille Enos, who was extraordinary in “The Killing”; Cedric Yarbrough from “The Goldbergs”; and Diedrich Bader from “Better Things.” The book is being adapted by Aaron Zelman (“Damages”) and Paul Lieberstein (“The Office”), who will serve as co-showrunners. The first season, which is due next year, will have eight episodes.
Perhaps AMC is finding its way back, after falling into something of a “Walking Dead” black hole. I’ve expected more from the home of “Mad Men,” “Breaking Bad,” “Halt and Catch Fire,” and “The Killing.” With “Interview With the Vampire” and “Dark Winds,” it has a pair of promising new series whose first seasons were impressive. “Parish,” starring Giancarlo Esposito, is due next year, as is “Mayfair Witches,” based on Anne Rice’s novels.