The weather’s warming up, and that no longer means just blockbuster fare at your local movie theaters. TV and streaming is ramping up some of today’s biggest properties with new seasons this month, including Stranger Things and Star Wars. To find out what else is new this month, read up on the eight certified fresh returning series below!
What it is: Charting the comeback reunion efforts of a long-forgotten pop girl group, Girls5eva stars Sara Bareilles, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Busy Philipps, and Paula Pell. The comedy series comes from creator Meredith Scardino and executive producers Tina Fey and Robert Carlock.
Why you should watch it: Reunions of yesteryear favorites are all the rage these days, and Girls5Eva masterfully (and hilariously) takes that prompt and runs with it. Aside from its radio-ready earworms, what makes it work is the cohesion and ease its four leads bring to the screen. Bareilles and Goldsberry, in particular, are surprisingly deft at bringing their musical star power to the world of comedy. Season 2 premieres May 5 on Peacock.
Where to watch: Peacock
Commitment: Approx. 4 hours (for the first season)
What it is: The narrative miniseries starring Colin Firth and Toni Collette charts the headline-making murder trial of American author Michael Peterson after his wife’s death in 2001. It is adapted from the Peabody-winning docuseries.
Why you should watch it: Widely credited with being an influence on all following true-crime docuseries, Jean-Xavier de Lestrade’s 2004 docuseries The Staircase continues to be must-watch TV today. Installments from the 13-episode series aired beginning in 2004 and wrapped with new episodes created for streaming on Netflix in 2018. Now, its much-buzzed-about narrative adaptation premieres May 5 on HBO Max.
Where to watch: Netflix
Commitment: Approx. 10.5 hours (for the full docuseries)
What it is: A sequel series to Amazon Prime’s longrunning Bosch, Bosch: Legacy picks up where season 7 left off and introduces the next career phase of Detective Harry Bosch (Titus Welliver). This new series comes from creators Tom Bernardo and Eric Ellis Overmyer and is based on the novels by Michael Connelly.
Why you should watch it: Bosch may be the best crime series you’ve never heard of. Change that! Welliver stars as Harry Bosch, a steely, determined homicide detective keeping watch over the City of Angels. Each season follows one major case and strikes the perfect balance between contemporary crime grit and smooth noir. Plus, co-creator Overmyer is a seasoned vet of the genre; Homicide: The Movie and Law & Order both earned him Emmy nominations in 2000 and 2002, respectively. We suggest you binge all of the original series before Bosch: Legacy premieres May 6 on Freevee.
Where to watch: Prime Video
Commitment: Approx. 58 hours (for all seven seasons)
What it is: From creator Sarah Streicher, The Wilds is a fast-paced survival drama following a group of girls stranded on an island after their plane to Hawaii fails. The twist is that unbeknownst to them, a secret group of onlookers planned on their arrival on the sandy shores all along.
Why you should watch it: Tonally a mix between Lost and Yellowjackets, The Wilds is an engrossing mystery whose well-acted twists and turns might just leave you gasping for air. Season 2 premieres May 6 on Amazon Prime.
Where to watch: Prime Video
Commitment: Approx. 10 hours (for the first season)
What it is: Martin Freeman took his international stardom from The Hobbit film series and Sherlock and did something unlikely: turned the lens on his personal life and co-created a passion project about modern-day parenting. Also serving as star and executive producer, he plays Paul, partner to Ally (Daisy Haggard) and father to Luke and Ava.
Why you should watch it: In title, it’s a tongue-in-cheek nod to the procreative practices of heterosexual couples. In practice, it’s a refreshingly unflinching look at the good, bad, and ugly realities of parenthood — new parents be warned! Season 3 premieres May 9 on FX.
Where to watch: FX on Hulu
Commitment: Approx. 10 hours (for the first two seasons)
What it is: Jean Smart stars as Deborah Vance, a has-been, world famous female comic who begrudgingly hires a down-and-out up-and-comer to punch up jokes for her Vegas residency.
Why you should watch it: A 2021 Emmy winner for best leading actress in a comedy series, best direction, and best writing, Hacks is far and away one of the best freshman series of the pandemic. Not only is it Smart at her absolute best, it’s also a star-making opportunity for newcomer (and fellow Emmy nominee) Hannah Einbinder. We can’t wait to hit the road with them when season 2 premieres May 12 on HBO Max.
Where to watch: HBO Max
Commitment: Approx. 5 hours (for the first season)
What it is: Emmy winner Ewan McGregor is back (finally!) as Obi-Wan Kenobi in this highly anticipated Disney+ limited series that charts the jedi’s life in the aftermath of Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. Joining him is Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker-turned-Darth Vader.
Why you should watch it: While the Star Wars prequel films are loved and hated in equal measure by those devout to the franchise, there’s no denying that McGregor and Christensen had real gravitas as their iconic characters. And Disney+ hasn’t steered us wrong with their series treatments yet, so we’re crossing our fingers for this one. To get ready, we recommend you binge the first three prequel films: The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Revenge of the Sith.
Where to watch: Disney+
Commitment: Approx. 7 hours (for the three prequel films)
What it is: A dark mystery overtakes a rural Indiana town when the young Will Byers goes missing and a young girl with a shaved head and telekinetic abilities appears. Something sinister and supernatural has come out to play — and that’s just the pilot! So buckle up.
Why you should watch it: It was the synth-laden soundtrack heard ’round the world six summers ago when Stranger Things dropped out of nowhere onto Netflix and took us all by storm. A back-to-form Winona Ryder, career-best David Harbour, and breakout stars by way of all its kids (but particularly Emmy nominee Millie Bobby Brown) are pitch-perfect and paired with plenty of ’80s-era horror nostalgia to make you want to watch this series again and again. The first half of season 4 streams May 27 on Netflix.
Where to watch: Netflix
Commitment: Approx. 24 hours (for the first three seasons)