Hot picks for summer TV viewing

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LOS ANGELES >> Summer travel packing list: swimsuit, sunblock, television.

In this portable TV era, there's no reason to leave small-screen entertainment at home when cable channels, streaming services and networks are eager to keep you connected online with top-notch fare from, among others, Oscar-owning filmmakers.

So hit the road with your smartphone, laptop or tablet — or, heck, stay put in front of an actual TV set — and check out this steamy-weather menu of hot picks.

• "BrainDead" (CBS, 10 p.m. Monday)

A different political show from "The Good Wife" creators Robert and Michelle King, with Washington beset by brain-eating bugs and a bipartisan coalition out to stop them. Tony Shalhoub and Broadway and TV "Grease" heartthrob Aaron Tveit are among the comic thriller's stars.

• "Animal Kingdom" (TNT, 9 p.m. Tuesday)

A teenager (Finn Cole) loses his mother to a heroin overdose and gains a violent family that includes a tough matriarch (Ellen Barkin) and her offspring in the drama series based on the Australian movie of the same name.

• "Raised by Wolves" (Acorn TV streaming service, June 20)

A bluntly funny take on the lives of an unconventional single mother and her six home-schooled kids from writers Caitlin and Caroline Moran, sisters who lived a version of the comedy series.

• "Queen of the South" (USA, 10 p.m., June 23)

Drawn from the best-selling novel "La Reina Del Sur," which already spawned a hit telenovela, the drama stars Alice Braga ("I Am Legend") as a woman on the run in the U.S. from a drug trafficking ring after her boyfriend's murder.

• "Dancing On the Edge" (PBS, 8 p.m., June 26)

An eight-part drama about a black jazz band that finds success and tragedy in 1930s London. Chiwetel Ejiofor ("12 Years A Slave") and Matthew Goode (aka Lady Mary's squeeze in "Downton Abbey") are part of the cast.

• "Alexander Hamilton" (History Channel, 9 p.m., June 26)

Finding tickets to the Broadway hit musical "Hamilton" too pricey? This two-hour documentary detailing his national legacy may leave you singing the founding father's praises.

• "Roadies" (Showtime, 10 p.m., June 26)

Rock stars ruled in filmmaker Cameron Crowe's Oscar-winning "Almost Famous," but it's the crew members who shine in the comedy series written and directed by Crowe. Luke Wilson, Carla Gugino and Keisha Castle-Hughes are part of the ensemble cast.

• "Hello World!" (Discovery Channel, 8 p.m. July 9)

The family-friendly series enlists the narration and tunes of Christina Aguilera, Usher, Joan Jett and others to educate us about wild animals and their habitats.

• "The Night Of" (HBO, 9 p.m., July 10)

A start-to-finish murder case as created by one Oscar-winning writer, Steven Zaillian ("Schindler's List") and one Oscar-nominated one, Richard Price ("The Color of Money"), with an assist from Peter Moffat, whose original U.K. series it's adapted from. John Turturro, Riz Ahmed star.

• "The A Word" (SundanceTV, 10 p.m., July 13)

Both autism and adultery figure in this series, described as both thoughtful and humorous, about a 5-year-old boy and his extended family.

• "The Get Down" (Netflix, Aug. 12)

New York circa 1970s is the setting for this music-saturated drama about South Bronx teenagers in a harsh and changing world. Extravagant filmmaker Baz Luhrmann ("Moulin Rouge!") directed and produced the series with young actors (Justice Smith, Shameik Moore) and veterans (Jimmy Smits, Giancarlo Esposito).


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