tv critic’s corner

Actress Frankie Shaw to star in Showtime series

Showtime has just picked up a half-hour comedy series from Frankie Shaw, set to premiere in the fall.

Shaw is writing, directing, producing, and starring in the show, but that’s not why she’s super-great. Shaw is originally from Boston, where super-greatness lives. On the semi-autobiographical show, Shaw will play Bridgette, a woman trying to balance her need for romance and sex with single motherhood — thus the title, “SMILF.” It will be set in Boston — the pilot was filmed here last fall — and it’s based on Shaw’s Sundance Jury Award-winning short film of the same name. Rosie O’Donnell will costar on the series, as Bridgette’s mother, Tutu, who is, according to Showtime, “completely oblivious to social convention.”

Shaw has acted in “Blue Mountain State,” “Good Girls Revolt,” and “Mr. Robot.” She’s also in the upcoming Marathon bombing movie “Stronger,” with Jake Gyllenhaal and Tatiana Maslany. Gary Levine, Showtime’s president of programming, gushed about the new project in a statement: “It’s thrilling to find an artist with a strong, singular voice that is new to television. Frankie literally does it all on ‘SMILF’: writer, producer, director and star, and the results are funny, emotional, surprising and unapologetic.”


Showtime, home of “Weeds,” “The Big C,” and “Californication,” has not been big on comedy lately, with only the last season of “Episodes” and “Dice” currently on its comedy schedule.

Matthew Gilbert can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.