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There are more places to find a great TV show than ever before. Let's go through them quickly, shall we? You've got your major streamers, which include Netflix, Hulu, Apple TV+. Disney+, Paramount+, Peacock, and Prime Video. Then you've got your traditional channels, which includes the likes of HBO, FX, Showtime, and Starz (all of which are also available on streaming as well). And then we've got stuff that kind of operates in the middle, like Max (formerly known as HBO Max, which is a home for both HBO proper, streaming-only Max originals, and more), and the FX on Hulu exclusives, which are shows produced by FX that are only available through streaming on Hulu.
Does it get kind of confusing? Yes! Has there ever been a better time to be a TV fan? No!
There are so many different places to look for your new television obsession that it's hard to even start. Some people may enjoy digging into the timeless classics, like The Sopranos, Breaking Bad, or, like, Columbo, if they've never dove in before. But others may enjoy seeing the new stuff. The exciting stuff.
2023 started off with a pair of bangers in HBO's pristine The Last of Us and Peacock's throwback mystery Poker Face. There's the stuff on Disney+ that will continue to build out the ever-expansive Marvel and Star Wars universes, if you're so inclined to keep with the program. There's stuff coming from Academy Award-winning actors and directors, and long-awaited follow-ups to shows like Justified. And that's just the beginning.
But TV has also become much harder to predict, because it's largely gone the way of music. These days, we hear about a show's release date and get a trailer maybe a couple weeks or a month before it comes out—if that. And that's why this list largely leans toward the speculative. We have a broad idea of when many of these shows are coming out, but it's hard to figure exactly when they may hit our screens. That's why you've got to stick with us as we update the list throughout 2023.
But in the meantime, take a look at everything that's catching our attention—and look closely, because there's a lot of it.
The Last Of Us (HBO)
The first big hit show of 2023 was HBO's The Last of Us, an adaptation of the beloved video game of the same name. Starring Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey with recurring assists from the likes of Anna Torv, Nick Offerman, and Murray Bartlett, this show about a fungal pandemic isn't your typical zombie show; it's concerned less with the scares of monsters (though there are still plenty of those!) and more with how characters grow when a new world must be developed. It's a pretty instant modern HBO classic. As long as Neil Druckmann (the creator of the game) and Craig Mazin (Chernobyl) remain in charge, The Last of Us is in good hands.
Poker Face (Peacock)
With Poker Face, Peacock has its first must-see prestige show. Natasha Lyonne leads the festivities as Charlie Cale, a woman with an innate lie detecting ability who finds herself frequently around murders—that she can't help but solve. Creator Rian Johnson (Knives Out, Glass Onion) wanted badly to bring back shows with the episodic nature and high quality of Columbo, and he's achieved just that with the wildly-fun Poker Face.
Shrinking (Apple TV+)
Could 2023 be the year of Apple TV+? Just as it seems like most of the other streamers on the list are starting to cut back at least a little, Apple remains on our list with easily the most entries (quantity-wise) and the most-exciting entries, in terms of actors and talent involved.
It starts with a pair of names that will certainly get you excited: Jason Segel (!) returns to TV comedies with co-star Harrison Ford (!!!) for this comedy about a shrink who makes a striking life change. Shrinking was created by Segel, along with the Ted Lasso superteam of Bill Lawrence and Brett Goldstein. It's a real winner—a show that builds itself around great characters you'll want to spend time with, but also gets into mature topics like grief and therapy.
Party Down (Starz)
Party Down, the beloved cult-classic comedy series, finally returned for a long, long, long-awaited third season—and it delivered. The comedy hit on all of its hilarious and emotional beats, and despite being off the air for 13 years, felt like it was never gone.
Led by Adam Scott's Henry Pollard, Ken Marino's Ron Donald, and the rest of the original cast (with the exception of Lizzy Caplan's Casey, who unfortunately wasn't available due to filming Fleishman is in Trouble), this is without question one of 2023's comedy events to remember.
Daisy Jones and the Six (Prime Video)
Taylor Jenkins Reid's novel Daisy Jones and the Six is loosely based on Fleetwood Mac's most notable Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks drama, and the series—starring Riley Keough and Sam Claflin—was a strong adaptation that made enough changes for the show to really pop off the page. Anyone who likes A Star Is Born or Almost Famous will have a great time with Daisy Jones and the Six.
The music is just as good as it should be, too; co-written by Phoebe Bridgers, Marcus Mumford, and Jackson Browne, among others, it's got a soundtrack you'll be listening to all year long.
A little bit of road rage goes a long way. Ali Wong and Steven Yeun play two people who come from very different backgrounds who completely throw the other's life off the rails after a completely random incident in a parking lot keeps escalating and escalating. Beef is one of the year's very best shows: funny, makes you think, and with an absolutely fantastic soundtrack. Showrunner Lee Sung Jin, director Jake Schreier, and Yeun will reunite on next year's Thunderbolts in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Jury Duty (Freevee)
Jury Duty may just be the most unique, engaging, and completely watchable show of 2023—and it all centers on a random dude named Ronald Gladden. Ronald, it turns out, signed up to participate in a documentary being made about the American legal system, and, when he got called for Jury Duty, the cameras began rolling. Except what Ronald doesn't know is that as soon as he got to Jury Duty, everyone around him—the other jurors, the judge, the bailiff, etc—are all actors. It's, essentially, a real-life Truman Show, and James Marsden is there, as an utterly hilarious version of himself, for good measure. The show is funny, and the improv comedy skills of the numerous actors in the cast is impressive to watch. And if you find yourself crying during the last episode (sounds crazy, I know)—you are not alone.
Mrs. Davis (Peacock)
With Lost, The Leftovers, and Watchmen, Mrs. Davis co-creator Damon Lindelof has been behind three of the greatest shows of the last two decades. He clearly knows his stuff when it comes to the small screen. But with Mrs. Davis—a show about a nun (Betty Gilpin) who takes on an massive, world-controlling AI named Mrs. Davis—he may have somehow figured out how to predict the future too. As we try to deal with the rise of Chat GPT and others in the real world, at least we can watch Gilpin's Sister Simone get to the bottom of a massive, genre-bending conspiracy in one of the year's most engaging, twisty, and funny shows.
Dead Ringers (Prime Video)
Prime Video brings the heat with this one. Dead Ringers is an update of the 1988 David Cronenberg psychological horror film that starred Jeremy Irons as twin gynecologists; in this series, the twins are instead be played by the great Rachel Weisz. The update comes at a time when female bodily autonomy is quite the timely subject, and the show—on the strength of its fantastic lead performance—stands up well to both our modern day and the iconic horror director's original film.
Love & Death (Max)
Look—the True Crime dramatization isn't particularly new at this point. We get it. That being said, Max's take on the infamous Candy Montgomery case is absolutely star-studded, led by the always fantastic Elizabeth Olsen and Jesse Plemons, along with supporting players such as Krysten Ritter, Lily Rabe, and Tom Pelphrey. It's a good watch if you understand what you're getting yourself into.
This series—loosely based on Pete Davidson's own life—sees itself as something of a take on Curb Your Enthusiasm, where Davidson plays a fictionalized version of himself with Edie Falco (as his mom) and, drum roll please, Joe Pesci (as his grandpa). The supporting/guest cast is super impressive, including Charlie Day, Bobby Cannavale, John Mulaney, and Kenan Thompson among others. A fun time!
Silo (Apple TV+)
Rebecca Ferguson is already helping to anchor two major blockbuster series—Dune and Mission Impossible—in 2023, so why not add a potentially massive sci-fi TV show to her list as well? Silo, based on Hugh Howey's series of novels, is about a dystopian future where society exists underground with a strict set of rules. Ferguson is joined in the cast by Rashida Jones, David Oyelowo, Tim Robbins, and Common, while Justified's Graham Yost is the show's creator.
And if you're looking for an epic of scale and world-building with stakes and a mystery that just feel big? Well, this is it. You're going to be hooked.
Platonic (Apple TV+)
Seth Rogen, Rose Byrne, and the whole Neighbors team is back together for Platonic, an Apple TV+ series about two friends who reconnect at pivotal points (one post-divorce, the other married and with a family) in mid-adulthood. And it is a blast!
There's lots of fun to be had in just about every episode, but one particularly enjoyable episode comes when Will (Rogen) spends a little extra time with Charlie (Luke MacFarlane), Sylvia's (Byrne) husband. There's a baseball game, there's a lot of drinking, and there are some really surprising special skills put on display. This show is a blast, and yet another reason why we really tend to think that Apple TV+ has this whole comedy thing figured out.
Based on a True Story (Peacock)
The last time Kaley Cuoco tried a murder mystery crime drama type of situation it worked out, with The Flight Attendant (Season 1 did, at least), and Based on a True Story proves similarly successful. When a couple discover a serial killer right in the midst of their small (but upper-middle class) social circle, they decide to channel the nation's true crime obsession for their own benefit, rather than alerting the authorities. It's a fun, dark, unique, and quick comedy that makes great use of the star power and charisma that Cuoco and her co-lead Chris Messina share. Tom Bateman, as a plumber with a bit of a secret, is another major standout.
I'm A Virgo ( Prime Video)
Boots Riley is back for his first project since the incredible sci-fi satire Sorry To Bother You, with I'm A Virgo. And we're pleased to report that anyone who liked the bizarre and super-smart magical realism of Sorry To Bother You will be right back on board with I'm A Virgo. The showstars Jharrel Jerome (Emmy winner for When They See Us) as a 13-foot-tall 19-year-0ld living in Oakland; he's been coddled his whole life, when suddenly he gets out into the world and becomes famous. At this point, he meets some new friends, and also falls into the crosshairs of his former hero, a Robocop/Iron Man hybrid named The Hero (Walton Goggins)–who is also a massively overreaching fascist megalomaniac. Fun stuff!
My Adventures With Superman (Adult Swim/Max)
Another superhero cartoon? Yes! You may think you've had your fill, but My Adventures With Superman (featuring The Boys and Scream star Jack Quaid as the voice of Clark Kent/Superman) is a fun and earnest show that retells Superman's origin and early years with great care. While we wait patiently for James Gunn's new Superman: Legacy movie, this series will be a great way to fill our craving for the Man of Steel.
Watch out, Hard Knocks—you've finally g0t some competition. Netflix's Quarterback (produced by Peyton Manning) takes you inside a year of NFL quarterbacks, including Patrick Mahomes, Kirk Cousins, and Marcus Mariota. It's unprecedented access into a world that fans of the sport are always eager to see more of.
Full Circle (Max)
Steven Soderbergh is without question one of the best directors in the industry. He's also without question one of the most prolific, and for Full Circle he directed every episode, while retreaming with his No Sudden Move screenwriter Ed Solomon.
This limited series about a botched kidnapping finds Sodey with a stacked cast (including Zazie Beetz, Timothy Olyphant, Jharel Jerome, Dennis Quaid, Claire Danes, and more) in his best lane: stylish crime drama. You'll be hooked on this one from the first episode, and be happy you kept watching by the very end.
Justified: City Primeval (FX/Hulu)
He's baaaaaack! Timothy Olyphant made his triumphant return as Raylan Givens for a brand new case in City Primeval, which finds the star returning to the character he played for 78 episodes on Justified. The series is once again based on Elmore Leonard source material, and while Raylan is the only character returning from the original series, it's just as much of a twisty, thrilling crime story. Boyd Holbrook, as he has so many times before, makes for a fantastic villain.
After teases in both The Mandalorian Season 2 and The Book of Boba Fett, we finally are in the midst of Ahsoka, the Star Wars spinoff centered on Rosario Dawson's live-action Ahsoka Tano. The show is not quite as mature as Andor, but it features easily some of the most interesting characters—and most in-depth lightsabers fights—since the sequel trilogy of films concluded in 2019. It's a bit of a difficult nut to crack for anyone who hasn't seen the animated Star Wars series, but it fills the galaxy far, far, away hole in our lives. What more can we ask for?
The Changeling (Apple TV+)
LaKeith Stanfield and Clark Backo lead The Changeling, which is an expertly-made and purposely complex horror/fantasy/historical fiction story based on writer Victor LaVelle's novel of the same name. If you're someone constantly looking for horror shows (and know you can do better than the likes of American Horror Story), than look absolutely no further.
Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix)
Perhaps the greatest Samurai story in years came this year on Netflix, not in live-action, but in the form of Blue Eye Samurai's stunning animation. With a coming-of-age story that evolves into a very bloody action-adventure, Blue Eye Samurai is one of the year's most exciting and well-written shows.
Gen V (Prime Video)
Were you missing The Boys? If the answer to that question is Yes, we've got some good news for you: Gen V, a spinoff of The Boys set in the same world but focused on a new and younger generation of Supes, picks up right where the main series left off with Season 3. And even better news? If you've never seen The Boys, there's not too much of a learning curve to get into Gen V—it's specifically crafted that way. So, no matter what, if you like bloody, pulpy, superhero satire with great characters and some bite, you should make sure not to miss Gen V.
The Fall of the House of Usher (October 12, Netflix)
For his fifth (and final, for now) series with Netflix, modern horror master Mike Flanagan went big with The Fall of the House of Usher. Much in the way that his first series, The Haunting of Hill House, was loosely based on the work of Shirley Jackson, The Fall of the House of Usher is loosely based on the work of Edgar Allen Poe. This show takes much of the Hill House and Midnight Mass drama that Flanagan has made his signature, and mixes it with a Succession-esque modern day story and a Final Destination-esque sense of dread; the deaths are brutal, and the show is gothic and addicitng. Most of your Flanagan favorites, including Carla Gugino, Rahul Kohli, Zach Gilford, and Kate Siegel return.
Fellow Travelers (Showtime/Paramount+)
Based on the novel of the same name, Fellow Travelers is a political thriller and epic romance set at a vital moment in U.S. history that plays out over several decades. At a time when the Lavender Scare—the Cold War-era persecution of homosexual people within the federal government—was both running rampant, a political power player (Matt Bomer) and a young idealist (Jonathan Bailey) cross paths and things change forever. The show is thrilling, steamy, and a great showcase for both fantastic leading men.
Lawmen: Bass Reeves (Paramount+)
Originally planned as a spinoff to 1883, this series is instead the first installment in an anthology planned to focus on different under-depicted figures of law enforcement throughout the years. While Bass Reeves has been depicted before (including recently by Delroy Lindo in Netflix's The Harder They Fall), he gets a leading man hero's turn in Lawmen: Bass Reeves, played by star and executive producer David Oyelowo.
Taylor Sheridan is an executive producer, and the cast includes Donald Sutherland, and Dennis Quaid, among others. Western fans have another fun one here.
The Curse (Showtime/Paramount+)
The Curse isn't going to be for everyone. This show, created by Nathan Fielder and Benny Safdie and starring Fielder, Safdie, and Emma Stone, is extremely dry, extremely uncomfortable, and in reveling in both of those things—extremely funny. The show centers on a couple (Fielder and Stone) who want desperately to get their very troubled (and quite problematic) HGTV show off the ground, while their bizarre producer (Safdie) has his own bizarre thing going on. Any fans of Uncut Gems or Fielder's other uncomfortable comedy will be in heaven, and Stone (who also is getting Oscar buzz for her new movie Poor Things) is pitch perfect as one of the most awkward people you'll see on TV all year.
A Murder at the End of the World (FX/Hulu)
Are you still mad that Netflix's The OA got cancelled? Are you someone who maybe was considering watching The OA, but never did because you heard it got cancelled and didn't want to leave on a cliffhanger? If the answer to either of these questions is yes, then A Murder at the End of the World might be for you. Creators Brit Marling and Zal Batmanglij re-team for this Iceland-set murder mystery led by a Gen Z sleuth (Emma Corrin) with an additional cast that includes Marling, Clive Owen, and Harris Dickinson. It's a slow burn, but it looks fantastic and each revelation in the central mystery will probably blow your mind.
Monarch: Legacy of Monsters ( Apple TV+)
MonsterVerse hive, assemble! The underrated franchise (which to this point includes Godzilla, Kong: Skull Island, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, and Godzilla vs. Kong) makes the leap to streaming in what may be the best project in the series yet thanks to writing from showrunner Matt Fraction (a comic book legend behind the most iconic Hawkeye run). It's a generation-spanning story that features real-life father and son Kurt Russell and Wyatt Russell as the same military officer (in different timeframes) trying to get to the bottom of secrets and happenings with all of these different monsters. But, quite frankly, isn't Kurt and Wyatt Russell + monsters enough?
Scott Pilgrim Takes Off (Netflix)
Fans of 2010's cult hit Scott Pilgrim vs. the World got a massive treat with the release of Scott Pilgrim Takes Off—an anime series executive produced by director Edgar Wright and featuring the movie's entire stacked original cast, including Michael Cera, Aubrey Plaza, Brie Larson, Chris Evans, and more. The show is just as entertaining, funny, and visually stunning as you might expect, but in something of a shocker, tells a fairly different story from the film. Give the show a watch, sit back, and enjoy.
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