Prime Video fantasy epic The Wheel of Time, Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney in Welcome to Wrexham, Netflix comedy Sex Education, and more, here are the TV and streaming shows you should catch up on before they return in September.
What it is: Moiraine, a member of a magical organization, takes five young people on a journey, believing that one of them might be the reincarnation of the Dragon, a powerful individual prophesied to save the world or destroy it. Season 2 premieres Friday, September 1.
Why you should watch it: This is a good vs. evil tale filled with everything fantasy fans expect: Orcs, Wizards, Dark Ones, and the like. The Wheel of Time does chart its own path, thanks largely to the performances of the core cast. Rosamund Pike was meant to play Moiraine.
Commitment: Approx. 8 hours (for season 1)
What it is: Baby Groot is a mischievous toddler who is growing up and getting into trouble among the stars as a member of the superhero team Guardians of the Galaxy. Season 2 premieres Wednesday, September 6.
Why you should watch it: With each episode running about five minutes in length, this one’s a breeze of a binge. And hey, sometimes you just have to take a Guardians of the Galaxy detour and get silly with a fledgling sentient tree.
Where to watch: Disney+ (subscription, seasons 1)
Commitment: Approx. 30 minutes (for season 1)
What it is: Star Trek: Lower Decks focuses on the support crew serving on one of Starfleet’s least important ships, the USS Cerritos, in 2380. Ensigns Mariner, Boimler, Rutherford and Tendi must keep up with their duties and their social lives, often while the ship is being rocked by a multitude of sci-fi anomalies. The ship’s bridge crew includes Captain Carol Freeman, Commander Jack Ransom, Lieutenant Shaxs, and Doctor T’Ana. This is the second animated spin-off in the franchise after 1973-74’s Star Trek: The Animated Series, but it has a decidedly more adult tone and sense of humor. Season 4 premieres Thursday, September 7.
Why you should watch it: Set in the established Star Trek universe, Lower Decks stands out from the pack. An animated workplace sitcom that flips expected sci-fi tropes on its head, the program features an array of Easter eggs and cameos to keep die-hard fans happy. At the same time, the show is quirky fun for Trek newbies as well.
Commitment: Approx. 13 hours (for seasons 1-3)
What it is: In Welcome to Wrexham, Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds learn to run the third oldest professional football club in the world. In 2020, Rob and Ryan teamed up to purchase the fifth-tier Red Dragons in the hopes of turning Wrexham AFC into an underdog story the whole world could root for, but the concern was that neither had any experience in football or working with each other. From Hollywood to Wales, from the pitch to the locker room, and from the front office to the pub, the docuseries tracks Rob and Ryan’s crash course in football club ownership and the inextricably connected fates of a team and a town counting on two actors to bring some serious hope and change to a community that could use it. Season 2 premieres Tuesday, September 12.
Why you should watch it: Thanks to the success of Ted Lasso, UK soccer has surged in popularity. Welcome to Wrexham may draw comparisons to Apple’s hit comedy, but with all its heart and working-class grit, this docuseries is a whole different ball game. And that’s a good thing.
Commitment: Approx. 6 hours (for season 1)
What it is: Socially awkward high school student Otis may not have much experience in the lovemaking department, but he gets good guidance on the topic in his personal sex ed course – living with his mom Jean, who is a sex therapist. Being surrounded by manuals, videos, and tediously open conversations about sex, Otis has become a reluctant expert on the subject. When his classmates learn about his home life, Otis decides to use his insider knowledge to improve his status at school, so he teams with whip-smart bad girl Maeve to set up an underground sex therapy clinic to deal with their classmates’ problems. But through his analysis of teenage sexuality, Otis realizes that he may need some therapy of his own. Season 4 premieres Thursday, September 21.
Why you should watch it: Sex Education is gross, awkward, and sexually uncomfortable, but it’s also wonderfully heartfelt and hilarious. That’s a tough balancing act to achieve. But like Big Mouth before it, this teen dramedy (in all its hormonal craziness) has cemented itself as one of Netflix’s best original comedies. Gillian Anderson and Asa Butterfield are a perfect match.
Where to watch: Netflix (Subscription, seasons 1-3)
Commitment: Approx. 22 hours (for seasons 1-3)
Thumbnail image by Prime Video.