Catch a ris­ing star on Dis­ney’s K.C. Un­der­cover

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - NORTHWEST/TELEVISION - MICHAEL STOREY The TV Col­umn ap­pears Sun­day, Tues­day and Thurs­day. Email: mstorey@arkansason­line.com

Some­times dur­ing these slow weeks of sum­mer, I en­joy wan­der­ing up the dig­i­tal dial in search for shows I don’t nor­mally watch.

I know there are plenty of read­ers who en­joy camp­ing out on, say, TBS and watch­ing the nightly re­runs of Friends, Se­in­feld and Ev­ery­body Loves Ray­mond. But when you’ve seen each episode a half­dozen times and can re­cite the di­a­logue along with the ac­tors, it might be time to be ad­ven­tur­ous and sam­ple some­thing new.

Dis­ney Chan­nel has a fun one you prob­a­bly don’t know about. K.C. Un­der­cover re­turns for Sea­son 3 at 7 p.m. Fri­day. Give it a try and see if you don’t find it amus­ing.

Added bonus: It’s fam­ily friendly. You can watch it with your pre­teen and not worry some­thing un­to­ward is go­ing to pop up.

The spy com­edy/ac­tion se­ries stars 21-year-old monony­mously billed Zen­daya (full name Zen­daya Ma­ree Sto­er­mer Cole­man) as tomboy K.C. Cooper. K.C.’s mouth­ful of a full name is Ka­t­rina Char­lotte Coretta Scott Cooper.

Trivia: Zen­daya’s pa­ter­nal grand­par­ents were from Arkansas. Her fa­ther is Kazembe Ajamu, born Sa­muel David Cole­man in Cal­i­for­nia.

View­ers may rec­og­nize Zen­daya from her time on Dis­ney’s Shake It Up! and Sea­son 16 of Danc­ing With the Stars. She was only 16 for DWTS, the youngest con­tes­tant to par­tic­i­pate at the time. She earned run­ner-up.

Also, Zen­daya co-stars in Spi­der-Man: Home­com­ing (which opens Fri­day) op­po­site a slew of big-name ac­tors. She’s a young ac­tress/singer/ dancer on the rise.

But be­fore Zen­daya gets too big for the small screen, you can catch her as K.C. Cooper, a black­belt high school math whiz who is liv­ing a dou­ble life as an in­ter­na­tional un­der­cover spy.

In fact, all the Coop­ers are spies. Par­ents Craig and Kira (Kadeem Hardi­son, Tammy Townsend) are sea­soned veter­ans, and K.C.’s geeky younger brother, Ernie (Kamil McFad­den), is the team com­puter ace.

The Coop­ers have a hu­manoid ro­bot named Judy (Trini­tee Stokes) that helps on mis­sions. The un­fil­tered Judy is still learn­ing how to demon­strate hu­man emo­tions.

And, of course, ev­ery teen hero needs a best friend and con­fi­dante. In this se­ries, that’s the spunky Marisa (Veron­ica Dunne), who helps K.C. with the mun­dane chal­lenges of be­ing a teenager. That in­cludes, ac­cord­ing to Dis­ney, “mat­ters of the heart.”

This be­ing Dis­ney, you know any mat­ters of the heart will be re­ally chaste.

In Fri­day’s episode, “Coop­ers on the Run,” K.C., her fam­ily and Marisa are on the run from arch­en­emy Zane Wil­lis (Fran­cois Chau) when they must take on yet an­other spy, the fierce and bizarre en­emy agent Sheena (China Anne McClain).

Best of the best. Bal­lot­ing for this year’s Emmy nom­i­na­tions has closed and we’ll find out with the big re­veal on July 13. The win­ners will be un­veiled Sept. 17 on CBS.

Mean­while, my pro­fes­sional or­ga­ni­za­tion, the Tele­vi­sion Crit­ics As­so­ci­a­tion, has com­pleted nom­i­na­tions for the 33rd an­nual TCA Awards. They will be pre­sented Aug. 5 dur­ing the TCA Sum­mer Press Tour in Bev­erly Hills.

FX’s At­lanta, Hulu’s The Hand­maid’s Tale, and NBC’s This Is Us each earned four nom­i­na­tions. The Hand­maid’s Tale is Hulu’s first TCA nom­i­na­tion. Are these three among your fa­vorite shows?

As has been the trend for a num­ber of years, the crit­ics, who watch TV for a liv­ing, find the best stuff on ca­ble and the stream­ing ser­vices. HBO has 12 nom­i­na­tions, FX has 11 and Net­flix has 10. Broad­cast net­works are few and far be­tween.

The most pres­ti­gious award, Pro­gram of the Year, has an in­ter­est­ing va­ri­ety of nom­i­na­tions this year. They are At­lanta, FX; Big Lit­tle Lies, HBO; Stranger Things, Net­flix; The Hand­maid’s Tale, Hulu; The Left­overs, HBO; and This Is Us, NBC.

Oth­ers nom­i­na­tions in­clude:

Drama: Bet­ter Call Saul, AMC; Stranger Things, Net­flix; The Amer­i­cans, FX (2015 and 2016 win­ner); The Crown, Net­flix; The Hand­maid’s Tale, Hulu; This Is Us, NBC.

Com­edy: At­lanta, FX; black-ish, ABC (2016 win­ner); Fleabag, Ama­zon; Master of None, Net­flix; The Good Place, NBC; Veep, HBO.

Most of my nom­i­na­tions made the list, but where are such pop­u­lar shows as NCIS, The Big Bang The­ory, Em­pire and How to Get Away With Mur­der? Re­mem­ber that the nom­i­na­tions were made by 220 jaded pro­fes­sional TV writ­ers who are usu­ally look­ing for the next big thing and watch way too much TV to be healthy.

Down­ward Dog. ABC has can­celed the fresh­man se­ries star­ring Al­li­son Tol­man. She was nom­i­nated for a 2015 Emmy for her role on the FX se­ries Fargo, but her se­ries with a talk­ing dog was bark­ing up the wrong tree.

Singer/ac­tress Zen­daya stars as K.C. Cooper in the Dis­ney com­edy/ac­tion spy se­ries K.C. Un­der­cover.

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