As streaming platforms expand their original programming, it’s becoming increasingly challenging to keep up with the many exceptional shows being released each year. Here are some of the best new shows so far that you should be watching.
1. “Ted Lasso”
A misfit American football coach named Ted Lasso, played by Jason Sudeikis, goes to England to lead an English Premier League soccer team. His clueless optimism is tested as he tries to win over the skeptical players and fans. The show defies expectations, being optimistic without being corny, and with a real heart at its core. Commentators have praised its ability to balance humor with heart and its deft portrayal of everything from depression to loss.
2. “The Queen’s Gambit”
“The Queen’s Gambit” tells the story of a young orphan girl named Beth, who discovers her incredible talent in chess. The show is set in the 1950s and 1960s and explores the world of competitive chess through Beth’s journey to becoming a world champion. The show is spectacularly shot, with stunning visuals and exceptional performances from the cast. Critics call it a beautiful, emotionally charged coming-of-age story set against the backdrop of the Cold War.
3. “The Boys”
“The Boys” is based on a comic book series by the same name, and is a surprisingly fresh take on the superhero genre. In this world, superheroes are managed by a corporation and are seen through their various profit-making aspects such as brand deals, merchandising, and media coverage. The show offers a dark and gritty look at heroism and those who wield its power. It’s an excellent commentary on contemporary culture and its obsession with celebrity.
4. “Lovecraft Country”
“Lovecraft Country” blends horror, historical fiction, and social commentary in a way that is both exciting and poignant. It follows Atticus Freeman, a young African American man in the 1950s, as he journeys to uncover his family’s legacy and navigate the racist world he lives in. The show uses the Lovecraftian horror elements to create social commentary on the experiences of marginalized people in America. The plot and themes are layered and nuanced, and the performances are stunning.
5. “The Mandalorian”
“The Mandalorian” is an original Star Wars story set after the fall of the Empire. It follows the titular bounty hunter as he travels through the galaxy, taking on missions and protecting a mysterious child. The show has been praised for its incredible world-building, exceptional visual effects, and its ability to capture the spirit of the original Star Wars trilogy. The series tells a compelling and emotional story, introducing new characters while returning to nostalgic themes.
“P-Valley” is a scripted drama that takes viewers inside the world of strip clubs. It focuses on a small Mississippi Delta town and the women who work in the strip club known as The Pynk. The show offers an honest and authentic depiction of the lives of these adults, their relationships, and their hardships. While at times light-hearted, it is ultimately a poignant examination of issues concerning community, empowerment and ownership.
7. “The Haunting of Bly Manor”
“The Haunting of Bly Manor” is a supernatural gothic horror series that explores themes of trauma, grief, love, and loss. It is the second season of “The Haunting” anthology series, and this time the story is centered around a young au pair who takes care of two orphaned children. There’s a genuine sense of unease and suspense in almost every episode, and the plot twists are genuinely surprising. The show’s atmosphere and haunting imagery will leave a lasting impact on its audience.
8. “The Undoing”
“The Undoing” is a psychological thriller miniseries starring Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant, and Donald Sutherland. It follows the story of Grace Fraser, (Kidman) a successful therapist, whose life falls apart when her husband, Jonathan (Grant) is accused of a heinous crime. The show is complex and suspenseful, with a multi-faceted plot that keeps the audience guessing. The performances from the main cast are stellar, and the show grapples with themes of deception, betrayal and the consequences of one’s past.
Streaming platforms are constantly producing new content, some shows being highly acclaimed and others, not so much. The shows mentioned above however are definitely worth watching, as they provide compelling storytelling, stunning visuals, superb acting, and relatable characters, every one of which will keep you engaged and emotionally invested throughout the season. Happy binge-watching!