Which TV finale is going to break you this weekend?

Cast of Barry.
Bill Hader, Sarah Goldberg, Henry Winkler, Stephen Root and Anthony Carrigan of “Barry.”
(Daniel Prakopcyk / For The Times)

How hot is California going to get this summer? I was reading that headline while looking out my window, wondering if the clouds were ever going to burn off this week. Right now, I’m going to opt for optimism, scope out this list of the best L.A. rooftop restaurants and bars and believe that the sun’ll come out tomorrow — or at least by the Fourth of July.

I’m Glenn Whipp, columnist for the Los Angeles Times and host of The Envelope’s Friday newsletter, which, yes, is back in your inbox after a brief spring break, just in time to bid farewell to “Succession,” “Barry” and “Ted Lasso” in the next few days. I’m terrible at goodbyes, so this is going to be rough.

‘Barry’ cast talks about its bittersweet goodbye

“The guy with PTSD is not gonna get funnier.”

That’s Stephen Root, talking with my colleague Michael Ordoña about the decision to end “Barry” and, with it, the story of Bill Hader’s hit man. The last episode airs Sunday — the same night that “Succession” ends — and, frankly, I don’t know what I’m going to be doing with my Sunday evenings moving forward.

Anyone have a good book to recommend?

Michael spoke with Hader and Root, along with actors Henry Winkler, Anthony Carrigan and Sarah Goldberg about the show’s many, many dark and heartbreaking plot developments. One of the funniest things about “Barry” of late is that it’s still placed in the comedy categories for the Emmys, though Root’s transformation from Fuches to the Raven the past few episodes has been absolutely hilarious.


Hader: “The other thing about having great actors is we could go to Stephen and say, “You’re gonna do the Raven. You’re gonna be this different guy, covered in tattoos. I want him to be sexy.”

Root: “And I said to him, ‘I would never be cast in this role. I would never be up for this role.’”

One of many reasons why the choice has been such a delight.

Cast of Barry.
The great Stephen Root, part of the great ensemble of “Barry.”
(Daniel Prakopcyk / For The Times)

Speaking of finales, have you seen ‘A Small Light’?

The best limited series to air this spring wasn’t “White House Plumbers” or “Love & Death,” the hyped offerings from HBO (or Max, if you prefer — I don’t). That honor would go to “A Small Light,” NatGeo’s poignant, inspiring look at Miep Gies — part of the Dutch resistance who helped eight Jews, including Anne Frank, hide in a secret annex for two years in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam. The series, which streams on Disney+ and Hulu, concluded its eight-episode run this week. I’m still wiping away the tears.

My colleague Meredith Blake spoke with Bel Powley, who plays Gies in a star-making turn. Not a huge fan of period pieces, Powley signed on to the series after she read the script and discovered its fresh, urgent spin on familiar history. It also didn’t turn Gies into a saint, depicting her as an ordinary woman full of fears and dreams and youthful energy who had the courage to follow her conscience.

“She believed that you do not have to be special to help others,” Powley told Meredith. “Unless you’re, like, a psychopath and there’s something wrong with your brain, we are all hardwired to do the right thing. It’s just about if you execute that choice.”

Bel Powley stars in "A Small Light."
(Lila Barth / For The Times)

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Go see ‘You Hurt My Feelings’ this weekend

I first saw Nicole Holofcener’s delightful comedy “You Hurt My Feelings” at home during the Sundance Film Festival and then revisited it a few months later before writing a review. In the parking garage after it ended, I ran into a couple who engaged me with the question: “Why don’t they make more movies like this?”

It’s a query that pretty much anyone over the age of ... I don’t know ... let’s say 18, asks whenever they happen upon a film that features recognizable human beings existing in a world absent of superheroes and spandex. Spanx, maybe. But no spandex.

Holofcener has fashioned a wonderful career mining her characters’ angst and annoyances. So when in “You Hurt My Feelings,” Julia Louis-Dreyfus’ Beth lets out a sigh at an anniversary dinner with her husband, Don (Tobias Menzies), and beams, “We’re so lucky,” we can be fairly certain that Beth’s contentment isn’t going to last much past the meal.

Everything we learn about Beth and Don’s marriage in the film’s opening half-hour, from the thoughtful way they treat each other to the way that their open displays of affection (and the way they share an ice cream cone) grosses out their adult son, Eliott (Owen Teague), seems to confirm the proclaimed good fortune. Professionally, they’re both sort of successful. Beth makes a living as a writer (mostly; she also teaches) and Don has been a therapist for many years.

But there’s also the sense that by saying these words out loud, Beth is, to a small degree, trying to talk herself into believing them. Yes, “You Hurt My Feelings” explores the incident of its title and the risks and limits of total honesty in a relationship. But it’s also a funny and incisive look at middle-age malaise, a time when potential has been replaced by plateaus and one might take an inordinate amount of pleasure in the comfort that comes from a well-made pair of socks.

You don’t have to look far to find this movie. A24 has put it in hundreds of theaters. Give it a look over the long weekend, particularly if the clouds don’t ever part.

Julia Louis-Dreyfus in "You Hurt My Feelings."
(Jeong Park/Courtesy of A24)


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