TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+ {debuts June 18}

TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: AppleTV+ doesn't usually promote its shows much. So when I see a show on there that I love, I like to write about it. 

Physical, debuting June 18, 2021, actually was promoted a little bit, mostly through its trailers, but it ended up being a really, really good show. Rose Byrne stars as Sheila, a bored housewife in 1980s California who seems pleasant on the outside, but on the inside, has a biting—and often hilarious—inner monologue. She stumbles across an aerobics studio in the mall one day and soon is hooked; she starts taking classes, and later, teaching them, all without telling her husband anything about it. Her husband is running for office and that's what's been preoccupying him, so Sheila is often the last person on his mind.

TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+

Rose Byrne is fantastic as Sheila, and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Rory Scovel, as her husband Danny, who seems harmless enough but is always overlooking Sheila's needs and ambitions. Dierdre Friel is also great as Greta, Sheila's best friend, whom is overweight and striving to be like Sheila, look-wise (if only she knew how often Sheila binge-eats!). An almost unrecognizable Ian Gomez (Cougar Town) plays Greta's husband, as well.

TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+
Rory Scovel, in Physical

This show ended up being a lot funnier than I thought it would be, as the show's synopsis was a little vague. Since then, AppleTV+ has released a better synopsis, though:

Set in the idyllic but fragile beach paradise of sunny 1980s San Diego, “Physical” is a half-hour dark comedy following Sheila Rubin, a quietly tortured, seemingly dutiful housewife supporting her smart but controversial husband’s bid for state assembly. But behind closed doors, Sheila has her own darkly funny take on life she rarely lets the world see. She’s also battling a complex set of personal demons relating to her self-image… that is, until she finds release through the unlikeliest source: the world of aerobics.

At first hooked on the exercise itself, Sheila’s real road to empowerment comes when she discovers a way to merge this newfound passion with the burgeoning technology of videotape to start a revolutionary business. The series tracks her epic journey from a stifled, overlooked enabler to a powerful, confident economic force, as Sheila transforms into someone we take for granted today (but was entirely radical at the time) — the female lifestyle guru.

TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+

Sheila's inner monologue was hilarious, and there are a host of secondary characters, some of whom I've mentioned above, which also round out the show. If you're a fan of '80s nostalgia, you'll enjoy this show as well, though it's not really a kid-appropriate show if you're thinking of sharing it with children; there's a lot of swearing, and the ending of the finale episode, especially, is not kid-friendly. 

TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+

Physical will debut on June 18 on AppleTV+, with its first three episodes, and new episodes will be released every Friday after that, with a total of ten episodes.


Are you a Rose Byrne fan? Do you plan on watching Physical?

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