HBO Max’s Peacemaker, which is based on the DC Comics character, premieres January 13 while fellow comics series Naomi premieres January 11 on The CW. The coming months will also see TV adaptations of novels like The Man Who Fell to Earth for Showtime and The Old Man for FX as well as adaptations of true-crime books like Love and Death for HBO Max.

Add these to recent hits like Shadow and Bone, The Queen’s Gambit, The Walking Dead and Game Of Thrones and you notice a pattern: Some of the most talked-about TV series of the past few years are all based on novels and other published works. So what will the next hit be? We’ve rounded up a list of books, comic books, and graphic novels currently in development as TV or streaming series that have the potential to become the next big Certified Fresh thing.

We’ll update our list as new information becomes available with new titles added, projects that have been canceled, release dates announced, and stars that have been attached. As with all good reading material, make sure to bookmark it.

Did your favorite book that is becoming a TV series not make our list? Is there a book you’d like to see made into a show? Tell us about it in the comments!


Alex Cross

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Characters from author James Patterson’s books.
The Fanbase: Fans of Patterson’s novels and their adaptations, as well as works by similar authors like Jeffery Deaver (The Bone Collector).
What We Know So Far: Variety broke the news in 2020 that Amazon Prime Video was developing the series.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Morgan Freeman has starred as Alex Cross in two film adaptations —  Kiss The Girls and Along Came a Spider — of Patterson’s works, and Tyler Perry played him in one Alex Cross. All are very much not Certified Fresh. TV adaptations of Patterson’s work have fared somewhat better.


All the King’s Men

Network: TBD
Based On: Kennedy Ryan’s book series.
The Fanbase: The three-book series, which includes the best-seller Queen Move, follows best friends who dedicate their lives to electing leaders who support their visions. Topics like Native rights, missing and murdered indigenous women, climate change, pay equity, and voter suppression make the book series incredibly relevant right now.
What We Know So Far: The Traveling Picture Show Company is producing the limited series. More details are forthcoming.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s a topical piece and with the right backing (say, a plug from Stacey Abrams or Michelle Obama), it could win in a landslide.


All The Light We Cannot See

Network: Netflix
Based On: Anthony Doerr’s 2014 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel
The Fanbase: Although this limited series will be executive produced, and directed, by Stranger Things’ Shawn Levy and written by Peaky Blinders’ Steven Knight, this is more of a war story with mixes of star-crossed love and something that may be the answer to immortality.
Everything We Know So Far: Netflix conducted a worldwide search of blind and low-vision actresses for the female lead, Marie-Laure, finally casting actress Aria Mia Loberti. The character is a French teenager who is blind and who is caught with her father in Nazi-occupied France during World War II. Through her dad, a master locksmith at Paris’ Museum of Natural History, she hears stories of the Sea of Flames, which will grant immortality. Her path collides with Werner, a German soldier who becomes smitten with her.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s a great move in favor of representation that Netflix cast such a wide net to find Marie-Laure. But there also needs to be a way to make Werner sympathetic. And then there’s the risk of making this story appear more than just a hokey take on a Dan Brown novel or an Indiana Jones movie.


American Born Chinese

Network: Disney+
Based On: Gene Luen Yang’s graphic novel
The Fanbase: Mixing in several genres, the action-comedy about a teen-aged child of immigrant parents who becomes entangled in a battle of Chinese mythological gods after he meets a new foreign exchange student has a lot going for it.
Everything We Know So Far: Kelvin Yu (Bob’s Burgers) and Charles Yu (Legion, Westworld), are writing and executive producing with the former serving as showrunner. I Know What You Did Last Summer’s Lana Cho is also working on the project, as a co-executive producer. Shang-Chi’s Destin Daniel Cretton is also involved.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Comparisons will likely be made to Amazon’s Invincible (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing; the series is Certified Fresh).


Anansi Boys

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Neil Gaiman’s 2005 novel.
The Fanbase: Gaiman’s fans are already fierce devotees, as evident by Amazon’s second-season order of the adaptation of his and Terry Pratchett’s Good Omens. This six-part limited series has some character overlap with Gaiman’s American Gods (which had its own Starz adaptation) but is not considered a spin-off or sequel.
Everything We Know So Far: The story focuses on Charlie Nancy, a young man who is used to being embarrassed by his estranged father (that would be Mr. Nancy from the Gods universe). When his father dies, Charlie learns that he was Anansi: the trickster god of stories — and that Charlie has a brother named Spider. Now the boys are together, with one determined to make the other’s life more interesting (i.e. more dangerous). Gaiman serves as co-showrunner with Douglas Mackinnon and Hanelle M. Culpepper will direct the pilot. Malachi Kirby will star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: We probably should take Good Omens’ 84% Tomatometer rating as a sign that Amazon knows how to handle Gaiman’s work.


Anatomy of a Scandal

Sienna Miller

(Photo by Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for New York Magazine)

Network: Netflix
Based On: Sarah Vaughan’s 2018 novel.
The Fanbase: People who love well-acted and quippy dramas about rich people and their problems of privilege, a la Big Little Lies.
What We Know So Far: Focusing on women caught in the wake of a scandal rollicking through an elite British circle, the six-part anthology comes from names like David E. Kelley and House Of Cards’ Melissa James Gibson. The cast includes Michelle Dockery and Sienna Miller (pictured).
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Pretty good. Kelley’s Emmy-winning Big Little Lies has a cumulative 89% Tomatometer score with two Certified Fresh seasons.


Baahubali: Before the Beginning

Network: Netflix
Based On: Indian author Anand Neelakantan’s trilogy.
The Fanbase: Fans of Neelakantan’s novels, but also those who enjoy shows about strong female heroines. And maybe also fans of The Crown, Netflix’s hit series about the ascention and reign of a female monarch.
What We Know So Far: Meant to run six seasons (two seasons per title), the story follows Sivagami, a character who rises from a defiant girl to a not-to-be-messed-with queen. Set in Mahishmati, the story coincides with a time when that ancient Indian kingdom becomes powerful. Indian actress Mrunal Thakur stars.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Netflix’s original Indian programming like Sacred Games and Leila have gotten fairly strong reviews. There’s a chance for this to do better if it finds an international audience.


Bad Monkey

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Carl Hiaasen’s 2013 novel.
The Fanbase: The show is created by Bill Lawrence, who is riding high after the success of his Ted Lasso, and stars Vince Vaughn, who has his own fan base. There’s also a monkey.
Everything We Know So Far: Maybe this is the consolation prize for Fletch devotee Lawrence? According to the logline, Vaughn plays a “one-time detective demoted to restaurant inspector in Southern Florida. A severed arm found by a tourist out fishing pulls Yancy into the world of greed and corruption that decimates the land and environment in both Florida and the Bahamas.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: it’s a quirky, dark comedy that could be a great bookend to Ted Lasso’s quirky optimism.


The Ballad of Black Tom

Network: AMC
Based On: Victor LaValle’s 2016 horror novella based on H.P. Lovecraft’s short story, “The Horror at Red Hook.”
The Fanbase: Those who enjoyed Amazon’s Them, HBO’s Lovecraft Country, and WGN’s Underground.
What We Know So Far: This is a retelling of a story by noted racist H.P. Lovecraft from the point-of-view of a young Black man from Harlem. AMC announced in 2017 that it was developing the project and then things went quiet, but in February 2021, the cable channel announced that it was partnering with sister channel Shudder on a yet-to-be-titled horror anthology series that would focus on “stories of Black horror from Black directors and screenwriters” — LaValle being one of them. Perhaps his Black Tom adaptation will be part of this?
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Pretty good if it secures the pedigree of those shows that appeal to the same fanbase — or juggernauts like HBO’s Watchmen or FX’s American Horror Story.


Beacon 23

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JANUARY 07: Lena Headey attends The 75th Annual Golden Globe Awards at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 7, 2018 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

(Photo by Danny Moloshok /Shutterstock)

Network: AMC and Spectrum
Based On: Hugh Howey’s 2015 novel.
The Fanbase: Howey already has a huge fanbase and AMC is also adapting his Wool (see below). But the story, which is a sci-fi thriller about two people trapped together at the end of the known universe, could bring in an audience similar to The Expanse or other popular properties.
What We Know So Far: Ready Player One’s Zak Penn is creating and adapting the series with Game of Thrones’ Lena Headey (pictured) executive producing and starring as Aster, a woman who mysteriously finds her way to a lighthouse in the darkest recesses of the universe. Homecoming star Stephan James will also star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Headey’s fanbase coupled with the love of the books could make this a beacon of light for the networks.


Black Cake

Network: Hulu
Based On: Charmaine Wilkerson’s 2022 novel.
The Fanbase: Those interested in a globe-trotting adventure story that’s got more twists than an episode of Finding Your Roots.
Everything We Know So Far: Women of the Movement creator Marissa Jo Cerar is adapting the story with Oprah Winfrey’s Harpo Films and Aaron Kaplan’s Kapital Entertainment also executive producing. According to Deadline, the plot follows “a runaway bride named Covey [who] disappears into the surf off the coast of Jamaica and is feared drowned or a fugitive on the run for her husband’s murder. Fifty years later in California, Eleanor Bennett, a widow in her 60s, loses her battle with cancer, leaving her two estranged children a flash drive that holds previously untold stories of her journey from the Caribbean to America.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Despite inevitable comparisons to the movie Titanic this cake sounds delicious.


The Bonfire of the Vanities

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Tom Wolfe’s 1987 novel.
The Fanbase: If done well, prestige TV and literary snobs who flock to elite Emmy darlings like AMC’s Mad Men.
What We Know So Far: Wolfe’s novel was a scathing attack at the classism and racism of 1980s New York. This project, which was announced in 2016, comes from Chuck Lorre with Boardwalk Empire’s Margaret Nagle writing. While it may seem odd that the guy known for middle-of-the-road multi-camera work like Two and a Half Men and The Big Bang Theory is involved with something like this, remember that he also did critical darling The Kominsky Method for Netflix.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It can’t be any worse than Brian De Palma’s 2008 movie version. With the right casting and prestige-TV production value and storytelling, the novel’s themes may strike a cord with modern audiences.


A Brief History of Seven Killings

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Marlon James’ Man Booker Prize–winning 2014 novel.
The Fanbase: Jamaican author James’ book follows the 1976 assassination attempt on Bob Marley through the 1980s crack wars in New York and beyond. Fans who are interested in social justice and those who were drawn to films like Judas and the Black Messiah might come out for this.
What We Know So Far: THR reported in 2017 that HBO was adapting the novel as a limited series with Insecure’s Melina Matsoukas on board to direct and James writing the script while Empire’s Malcolm Spellman would executive produce and serve as showrunner.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: With that pedigree, pretty good.


The Case of Cyntoia Brown

Network: Starz
Based On: Cyntoia Brown-Long’s 2019 memoir, Free Cyntoia: My Search for Redemption in the American Prison System.
The Fanbase: The limited series is inspired by Brown-Long, who served 15 years of a life sentence for killing a man when she was 16 (something she has maintained was an act of self-defense). The fanbase could bring in true-crime fanatics like those who campaigned for the release of Making a Murderer’s Steven Avery, as well as prison reform advocates like those who watched director Ava DuVernay’s documentary film, 13th.
Everything We Know So Far: Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson and La La Anthony are executive producing while Power Book III: Raising Kanan’s Santa Sierra is writing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Given the current political landscape and the focus on police and prison reforms, this could be a major cultural talking point.


The Change

Network: TBD
Based On: Kirsten Miller’s 2022 novel.
The Fanbase: The Hollywood Reporter, which announced the deal, describes the book as a “feel-good feminist revenge fantasy” that centers on 40-something women who find that they have unexpected powers — powers they use to hunt down serial killers and settle old scores.
Everything We Know So Far: Bruna Papandrea’s production company, Made Up Stories, is adapting the novel with True Blood and Supernatural alum Raelle Tucker writing the script.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: This Change could be good.


The Changeling

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Victor LaValle’s 2017 horror-fantasy novel.
The Fanbase: The book, which depicts a woman seemingly going through postpartum depression before she commits a heinous act and then disappears into an enchanted world, has won many awards in the horror and fantasy genres. It also could appeal to new parents, both those suffering from postpartum depression and their partners and loved ones who are watching them do so.
Everything We Know So Far: After being in development at FX, Apple TV+ ordered it to series in August 2021 with LaKeith Stanfield set to executive produce and star. Cruella’s Kelly Marcel is writing and executive producing and Insecure’s Melina Matsoukas is directing and executive producing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: This could be a change, both for how we perceive horror series and for how we perceive depression.


Charlotte Walsh Likes to Win

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Jo Piazza’s 2018 novel about a cutthroat and politically ambitious heroine.
The Fanbase: People who enjoyed shows like HBO’s Veep, the 1999 movie Election or other sardonic stories about determined people who must weight the consequences of success.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2019 that Julia Roberts — then just coming off of Amazon’s Homecoming — was in discussions to star and executive produce this limited series. It was going to be adapted by playwright and creator of ABC’s Brothers & Sisters, Jon Robin Baitz.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: On the one hand, people may revel in watching Julia Roberts get her hands dirty in a political romp. On the other, we may all be too burned out with actual political mudslinging to invest interest.


City on Fire

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Garth Risk Hallberg’s 2015 novel.
The Fanbase: It’s a period-set whodunnit (and by “period,” we mean the early aughts) written and executive produced by some folks who know that era better than anyone: The OC and Gossip Girl’s Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage.
Everything We Know So Far: Set in 2003 New York, the story follows what happens when an NYU student is shot and killed when she’s alone in Central Park. According to the lonline, “her friends’ band is playing her favorite downtown club but she leaves to meet someone, promising to return. She never does. As the crime against Samantha is investigated, she’s revealed to be the crucial connection between a series of mysterious city-wide fires, the downtown music scene, and a wealthy uptown real estate family fraying under the strain of the many secrets they keep.” Wyatt Oleff is one of the stars and Jesse Peretz will direct, according to Deadline.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Stories told in reverse and with surprise reveals about who people really are have worked wonders for recent dramas like Freeform’s Cruel Summer and HBO’s Mare of Easttown


The Cleaners

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: The Ken Liu short story that appeared in the 2020 fairy tale-themed anthology Faraway.
The Fanbase: Although it’s loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen’s The Princess and the Pea, think more sci-fi fans of shows like Amazon’s The Expanse than those who enjoy battling princesses and witches in ABC’s Once Upon a Time.
What We Know So Far: In 2020, Deadline reported that The OA writer Dominic Orlando and Carnival Row star Orlando Bloom were involved in adapting Liu’s near-future set story about inanimate objects that carry their owners’ experiences with them so that they can be re-lived through touch. The eponymous “cleaners” are charged with sanitizing these pieces so as to relieve their own emotional burdens.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It sounds more like Black Mirror meets Beauty and the Beast — both of which have high Tomatometer scores.


The Consultant

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Bentley Little’s 2015 novel, Basgallop.
The Fanbase: Audiences who understood the brilliance of the Comedy Central series Corporate as well as anyone part of 2021’s Great Resignation (or who wished that they could be).
Everything We Know So Far: Christoph Waltz stars in this dreamed that, according its logline is a “workplace thriller that explores the sinister relationship between boss and employee, asking how far we will go to get ahead, and to survive.” Servant’s Tony Basgallop is the creator and showrunner while WandaVision’s Matt Shakman is the director.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Provided it doesn’t bring about too much repressed memories of bad employment, it couldn’t hurt to visit for at least one consultation.


Conversations With Friends

Joe Alwyn

(Photo by Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images)

Network: Hulu
Based On: Sally Rooney’s 2017 debut novel.
The Fanbase: Those who loved Hulu’s adaptation of another Rooney novel, Normal People.
What We Know So Far: Joe Alwyn (pictured), Jemima Kirke, and Alison Oliver star in this 12-episode series about two college friends and former partners who become obsessed with a married couple a few years their seniors.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Just make sure to give Alwyn a chain necklace.


A Cool Breeze on the Underground

Network: TBD
Based On: Don Winslow’s mystery, the first in his five-book series.
The Fanbase: Mystery buffs who also enjoy stories of London’s punk scene with maybe a sort-of wink-wink, nudge-nudge to the genre because …
Everything We Know So Far:Knives Out’s Rian Johnson and Ram Bergman are two of the producers of the series, according to Deadline. Bad Education’s Cory Finley will write, direct and executive produce the story of a young private investigator hired to find a prominent senator’s daughter who has gotten involved in London’s violent, drug-fueled punk scene.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: A Cool Breeze could easily be a hot watch with a killer soundtrack.


Daddy

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Jonathan Parks-Ramage’s 2021 novel, Yes, Daddy.
The Fanbase: People who enjoy dark psycho-thrillers like Netflix’s You or Elite.
What We Know So Far: The series’ lead character is Jonah Keller, a recent New York transplant with dreams of becoming a famous playwright. Until then, he starts dating an older, successful one. Things go awry when Jonah goes to the Hamptons with his beau.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could easily become a cultural talking point about consent and abuse, à la FX on Hulu’s A Teacher.


Daisy Jones & the Six

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Taylor Jenkins Reid’s 2019 novel.
The Fanbase: Rock fans who like to go behind the music.
What We Know So Far: Partly inspired by Fleetwood Mac, Daisy Jones stars Riley Keough (Elvis’ granddaughter!) as the face of a 1970s rock band that exploded out of the L.A. music scene — and then broke up at the height of their fame. It’s told in documentary style with “interviews” with the band. Other stars include Camila Morrone, Sam Claflin, and Suki Waterhouse.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The show is on many outlets’ most anticipated new releases lists.


Dark Winds

Network: AMC
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Tony Hillerman’s Leaphorn & Chee book series.
The Fanbase: The buzz-words “Western noir thriller” associated with it could bring in an audience interested in series like FX’s Justified (which itself is based on characters created by the late author Elmore Leonard — whose work has had its own dealings with AMC). But, according to the press release, it’s also a period drama about “two Navajo tribal police officers in 1971 on the hunt for the perpetrators of multiple, yet seemingly disconnected crimes.” There has been a push for greater representation of Native and Indigenous talent on screen, as seen by the Peacock comedy Rutherford Falls and the FX series Reservation Dogs.
Everything We Know So Far: Fargo’s Zahn McClarnon, who is also an executive producer, and Roswell, New Mexico’s Kiowa Gordon star in a series created and executive produced by Graham Roland and with Vince Calandra serving as showrunner and executive producer. Other notable executive producers? George R.R. Martin and Robert Redford. The Americans alum Noah Emmerich and The Office’s Rainn Wilson also appear. The first season will be six episodes.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: All of this sounds like prestige drama gold.


Dawn

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Octavia Butler’s 1987 science-fiction novel.
The Fanbase: Sci-fi fans who’d like to see more stories of women of color in that space.
What We Know So Far: From IndieWire: Heroine Lilith Iyapo was rescued by aliens after a nuclear war wiped out most of the human race, including her husband and son. Now, two centuries later, she must help her saviors resurrect our species.” Ava DuVernay’s ARRAY production company is producing and Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker’s Victoria Mahoney will write and direct.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Butler’s books are beloved and this is the first book in a trilogy, so it’s a good bet that this series could be around for a while.


Deadtown

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Catherynne M. Valente’s 2017 novella, The Refrigerator Monologues.
The Fanbase: People who like wry takes on the superhero genre, like Amazon’s The Boys, as well as people who like wry takes on female assassins, like AMC and BBC America’s Killing Eve.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2018 that Whip It’s Shauna Cross was developing the story about five women who meet in purgatory and discover that their entire lives were spent in service to various male superheroes — and died because of it. Now they are discovering their own powers.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It would make a nice companion piece to The Boys, which has two Certified Fresh seasons.


Devil in Ohio

Network: Netflix
Based On: Daria Polatin’s 2017 novel as well as a true crime.
The Fanbase: A young adult take on the Single White Female-like genre.
Everything We Know So Far: Emily Deschanel plays Suzanne Mathis, a psychiatrist who makes the ill-advised decision to take in a patient, a teen-aged runaway from a cult. This doesn’t go over well with her own daughter when her family’s new tenant begins to sleep in her bedroom, edge her out of her position on the school paper, and flirt with her crush.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The eight-part limited series could be a way to bring together fans of young-adult fans, true-crime junkies and anyone else who likes fascinating mysteries.


The Devil in the White City

Network: Hulu
Based On: Erik Larson’s 2003 historical non-fiction about the 1893 Chicago world’s fair and H. H. Holmes, a serial killer who was lurking around the city at the same time.
The Fanbase: People who enjoy historical drama and true crime.
What We Know So Far: Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company bought the film rights in 2010, but it was announced as a limited series for Hulu in 2019. Martin Scorsese is also an executive producer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could make a killing.


DMZ

Network: HBO Max
Release Date: 2022
Based On: DC comic series
The Fanbase: It’s a “superhero” show about a medic stuck in the aftermath of a bloody civil war. Couldn’t be more topical.
What We Know So Far: In 2020, HBO Max gave a series order to this four-part project from Ava DuVernay and Westworld’s Roberto Patino. Set in the near-future when America is at odds and Manhattan is a demilitarized zone, Rosario Dawson stars as a medic attempting to find her lost son. Benjamin Bratt also stars as the leader of a powerful street gang.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It has the right pedigree.


The Downstairs Girl

Stacey Lee author of The Downstairs Girl

(Photo by courtesy of the author; Penquin Books)

Network: TBD
Based On: Stacey Lee’s 2019 young-adult historical fiction.
The Fanbase: Those who loved Netflix’s Bridgerton and The CW and HBO Max’s Gossip Girl series as well as period-set stories of race with an upstairs-downstairs dynamic like Apple TV+’s Dickinson.
What We Know So Far: Aminta Goyel is adapting the half-hour series about a Korean teen secretly living in a basement with her guardian in 1890 Atlanta. By day, she’s a maid to one of the city’s wealthiest families. By night, she pens an anonymous newspaper column that discusses race, gender bias and the women’ movement. Bound Entertainment is producing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Let it embrace anachronistic music and language and it could be the next Dickinson or Underground.


Dune: The Sisterhood

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Frank Herbert’s book series.
The Fanbase: Fans of Dune in all its iterations.
What We Know So Far: HBO Max gave a straight-to-series order for the TV series, meant to accompany the 2021 film starring Timothée Chalamet. Showrunner Jon Spaihts left the project in 2019. Then, of course, the coronavirus hit and release dates and schedules shifted. In 2021, <I>Variety reported that Diane Ademu-John was named showrunner and that it will be a prequel series “told through the eyes of a mysterious order of women known as the Bene Gesserit.” Denis Villeneuve will direct the pilot.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Too early to tell.


The Eagles of Newark

Network: TBD
Based On: James Overmyer’s book, Queen of the Negro Leagues: Effa Manley and the Newark Eagles.
The Fanbase: Sports fans, activists and anyone who likes a limited series that (according to the press release) “chronicles the dramatic efforts by tenacious civil rights activist Effa Manley and her husband Abe as they embark upon a risky business venture – starting their own ball club in the raucous world of the Negro Baseball Leagues.” (Manley was the first, and, so far, only woman to be elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame).
Everything We Know So Far: Alcon Television Group has acquired the rights to the book, and to the limited series adaptation written by Byron Motley and Jeffrey Miiller. Anya Adams is directing the pilot.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Very good. But it may have competition. Amazon Prime Video will soon have a series version of A League of Their Own, co-created by and starring Abbi Jacobson, and Apple TV+ is adapting the baseball biography, If You Were Only White: The Life of Leroy ‘Satchel’ Paige.


Earthsea

Network: TBD
Based On: Ursula K. Le Guin’s book series.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy the dense and immersive book series, which includes an array of interesting characters — many people of color.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2019 that film producer Jennifer Fox was working with studio A24 to develop the series.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Fans will be expecting greatness, having been burned before by not-so-great 2004 miniseries that aired on what was then called the Sci Fi Channel.


The Essex Serpent

Tom Hiddleston in The Essex Serpent

(Photo by Apple TV+)

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Sarah Perry’s 2016 novel.
The Fanbase:  Romantics who like to debate where faith and science meet. If the 1893 setting is kept, fans who like their historical fiction with a dash of the supernatural like BBC series The Living and the Dead or film The Woman in Black.
What We Know So Far: It’s an English drama about a widow who, now released from her abusive marriage, set out for the village of Essex because she hears there might be a mythical serpent there. Claire Danes plays the widowed Cora, while Tom Hiddleston — pictured above in a first-look image from the series — will play Will Ransome, the trusted leader of a small rural community. Mrs. Wilson’s Anna Symon is adapting the novel and Clio Barnard (The Selfish Giant) is directing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It has a wealth of talent on board and is being distributed by Apple TV+, which routinely strives for prestige-TV quality. Chances seem pretty solid.


Expats

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Janice Y. K. Lee’s 2016 novel.
The Fanbase: Centered on the close-knit expatriate community in Hong Kong, the series could draw an interest in travelers or even those who relate to series about deep female friendships like HBO’s Sex and the City.
What We Know So Far: Nicole Kidman’s production company optioned the book and, in 2019, The Farewell’s Lulu Wang signed on as an executive producer. It’s also been reported that Big Love’s Melanie Marnich and Australian writer Alice Bell will serve as co-showrunners.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: If the series can capture the book’s social satire, it should score with both viewers and critics.


The Fall of the House of Usher

Network: Netflix
Based On: Edgar Allan Poe’s stories.
The Fanbase: It’s a Mike Flanagan-created limited series based on America’s most notoriously creepy writer. In short: the fanbase is horror nuts.
Everything We Know So Far: Midnight Mass’ Flanagan created the series and will direct for episodes (Michael Fimognari will direct the other four). Stars include Mark Hamill and Carla Gugino.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s based on multiple works from Edgar Allan Poe — but how, and what, that means could be tell-taling. (Is it an anthology? Is it several stories woven together?).


Felix Ever After

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Kacen Callender’s 2020 YA novel.
The Fanbase: Trans people, their families and others interested in seeing a love story centered on a Black, queer teen.
What We Know So Far: Amazon announced it had bought the rights to the book in August 2020 — just a few months after it was released.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: If done well, it could find a comfortable place in Amazon’s library comparable to the one Love, Victor has at Hulu.


The Final Girl Support Group

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Grady Hendrix’s 2021 novel.
The Fanbase: Horror fans who enjoy tongue-in-cheek references to the genre.
Everything We Know So Far: Charlize Theron and It’s Barbara and Andy Muschietti are developing the book as a TV series. According to Deadline, it focuses on a “Los Angeles–based therapeutic support group for six ‘final girls’— survivors of mass-murderer rampages whose experiences inspired the slasher franchises that saturated horror cinema in the 1980s and ’90s, earning them minor celebrity.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It certainly has the right pedigree taking a stab at it.


The Firekeeper’s Daughter

Michelle and Barack Obama

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Network: Netflix
Based On: Angeline Boulley’s 2021 novel.
The Fanbase: Anyone interested in a teen-age (reluctant) super sleuth who takes down authority and who also happens to draw upon her knowledge of chemistry and the Ojibwe traditional medicine to crack the case.
What We Know So Far: Barack and Michelle Obama optioned the novel for a TV adaptation before its debut as part of their Netflix-based production company, Higher Ground. The press release notes that “Mickey Fisher (Reverie, Extant) will serve as showrunner, and will co-write with Wenonah Wilms (Horsehead Girls) who will also serve as an executive producer” and that “like author Boulley, Wilms is from the Ojibwe tribe (Sault Ste. Marie and Red Cliff bands, respectively) and will bring her lived experiences to this series.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Hoping it will be more like Veronica Mars than Nancy Drew.


Fledgling

Network: HBO
Based On: Octavia Butler’s 2005 sci-fi novel.
The Fanbase: Butler’s fanbase is a devout one (see other titles on this list). But this project also comes with big-named executive producers like Issa Rae and J.J. Abrams attached. Oh, and this story is about vampires.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Sonya Winton-Odamtten and Jonathan I. Kidd had a pilot script deal with HBO for an adaptation of the book, with both Rae and Abrams serving as EPs. The story follows a young amnesiac who realizes she’s actually a genetically modified, middle-aged vampire.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Abrams was an executive producer on Lovecraft Country for HBO, which employed both Kidd and Winton-Odamtten and was a hit even if its run was cut short. Rae has also had tremendous success at HBO. This, plus the sci-fi vampire angle could make it a huge draw.


Fleishman Is in Trouble

Network: FX on Hulu
Based On: Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s 2019 novel.
The Fanbase: Divorcees going through a mid-life crisis and people who enjoy poppy storylines on the subject. Also, lots of journalists and literati who may be hate-watching and hoping for schadenfreude.
What We Know So Far: Journalist Brodesser-Akner’s debut novel was a smash hit when it was published, telling the story of a man separated from his wife and trying dating on for size through the eyes of a long-time friend who is also stunted in her marriage. Jesse Eisenberg and Lizzy Caplan will star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Hard to say. The plot is a slow burn given that it doesn’t involve something more attention grabbing like a murder mystery or assault.


Friends Like These

Network: TBD
Based On: Kimberly McCreight’s 2021 literary thriller
The Fanbase: Those enjoy the “people locked in a house” trope — especially if those people have lots of dirty secrets about one another.
Everything We Know So Far: Amblin TV is developing the series with McCreight. According to Deadline, the plot follows “five friends who gather at a picture perfect country house in the Catskills for a co-ed bachelor weekend.” Except these friends are also bound together by the mysterious death of another member of their circle and they’re also there to stage an intervention for one friend’s opioid addiction.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: This is one of many series that could be part of the trend of bottle TV series (i.e. shows filmed in one location due to COVID and/or costs). It could be a fascinating hit like the film Knives Out. But it’s hard to say how campy and fun a show could be if it’s also discussion serious topics like opioid addiction.


Gang Leader for a Day

Network: AMC
Based On: Sociologist Sudhir Venkatesh’s memoir of the same name.
The Fanbase: People interested in what it means to be Black and poor in notoriously racially-divided Chicago.
What We Know So Far: Venkatesh’s bestseller chronicles what happened when he, a wide-eyed sociology student, planned to interview members of the nation’s largest public housing project. A gang leader told him that, if he really wants answers, he needs to experience it first hand. AMC announced in 2017 that it was developing the project with with Hand of God’s Ben Watkins writing and serving as an executive producer with others like actor-producer Ed Burns.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Too early to tell.


Girl Waits with Gun

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Amy Stewart’s 2015 novel.
The Fanbase: Fans of The Alienist, Miss Scarlet and the Duke, Enola Holmes, Godless, and similar historical fiction featuring fearless, crime-fighting women.
What We Know So Far: The book is inspired by Constance Kopp, one of the United States’ first female deputy sheriffs, a title she earned in 1914. If that premise isn’t enticing enough, Deadline reported in 2018 that it will be written by Veep’s Jennifer Crittenden and Gabrielle Allan and produced by Elizabeth Banks and her husband, Max Handelman, who were producers on the Pitch Perfect films and Hulu series Shrill.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: We’ll have to wait and see if it comes in dead or alive, but stories of early gun-toting female law enforcement types seem to be a hit with critics and earn Fresh Tomatometer scores.


The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Stieg Larsson’s Millenium book series.
The Fanbase: Variety reported in 2020 that this series would concentrate on hacker-with-anger-issues, Lisbeth Salander (sorry to fans of the books’ other protagonist, Mikael Blomkvist).
What We Know So Far: No writer or cast has been announced, but attached producers include Rob Bullock (The Night Manager) and Andy Harries (The Crown). Variety also noted that this “will not be a sequel or continuation of the story from the books or the films into which they were adapted. It will instead take Salander and place her in today’s world with a wholly new setting, new characters, and a new story.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Two of the five films based on the series earned Certified Fresh badges, one was Fresh, and two were Rotten. It’s hard to say without actors, writers, or directors attached, but if we trust in trust in the producers’ previous work and Amazon Studios productions based on books like Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, Alex Rider, and The Boys, it looks promising.


The Girls on the Bus

Greg Berlanti and Julie Plec

(Photo by Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images)

Network: Netflix
Based On: A chapter of Amy Chozick’s 2018 book, Chasing Hillary: Ten Years, Two Presidential Campaigns and One Intact Glass Ceiling.
The Fanbase: People interested in the unglamorous world of political reporters who spend years on the campaign trail — and the sometimes unlikely allies they make along the way.
What We Know So Far: Julie Plec (The Vampire Diaries) and Arrowverse creator Greg Berlanti (both pictured) are executive producing the series with Plec writing along with Chozick. With a title meant to subvert Timothy Crouse’s 1973 book The Boys on the Bus, this story will concentrate on four female reporters. Do note, however: Deadline reported in 2019 that the series will feature fictional candidates.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Could it end up like HBO’s The Newsroom? Or Amazon’s Good Girls Revolt, which fared better, but was (infamously) canceled anyway. Or maybe, with the right cast, it will soar like feature film A Private War, which starred Rosamund Pike as a war correspondent. Plec and Berlanti both have fairly good Tomatometer track records, though this series most likely has no vampires or superheroes.


Glowing Up

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Anne Camlin’s graphic novel, Mismatched (which, in itself, is based on Jane Austen’s Emma).
The Fanbase: Not to be confused with the movie Clueless, this modernist retelling of Emma is a queer-friendly half-hour adult animation musical. Most Austen fans would probably be down for this interpretation.
Everything We Know So Far: According to Deadline, the story focuses on “Evan Horowitz, an out and proud Latino/Jew amateur matchmaker and wannabe makeup influencer. Evan is an old-school romantic who dedicates himself to getting true love to trend at his high school in Queens — through singing, dancing, and contoured cheekbones.” Gloria Calderón Kellett executive produces through her overall deal with Amazon along with Will Graham and writer-executive producers are Debby Wolfe and Marcos Luevanos.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could have the appeal of Hulu’s warm teen dramedy, Love, Victor, and teen-set musical movies and plays like Everybody’s Talking About Jamie.


Great Circle

Network: TBD
Based On: Maggie Shipstead’s 2021 novel.
The Fanbase: Those fascinated with alternate timelines as well as early 20th Century news stories like aviation, Prohibition and war.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Erik Feig’s Picturestart had optioned the novel, which takes place over two timelines and follows “Marian … an Amelia Earhart-like female pilot whose audacious dream is to circumnavigate the globe north-south over the poles and whose storyline spans from the 1930s to the 1950s” and “Hadley … a present-day disgraced actress offered to play Marian in a biopic to revitalize her career.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The book has a huge — and growing –fanbase of literati, which means that this could be the dinner party show for the prestige TV set.


Green Lantern

Network: HBO Max
Based On: The DC Comics character
The Fanbase: Shocking no one, the 10-episode series counts Greg Berlanti as a co-writer and executive producer. But the streaming service option means that things can get more creative than they might have been able to on broadcast TV.
Everything We Know So Far: According to Variety, Finn Wittrock stars as Guy Gardner, “a hulking mass of masculinity” and “embodiment of 1980s hyper-patriotism.” But, you know, likable. The article also reports that the “story spans decades and galaxies, beginning on Earth in 1941 with the very first Green Lantern, secretly gay FBI agent Alan Scott, and 1984, with cocky alpha male Gardner and half-alien Bree Jarta. They’ll be joined by a multitude of other Lanterns — from comic book favorites to never-before-seen heroes.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: If it’s anything like the other shows in the Berlanti-verse, we’re looking at an easy six-season run.


Grendel

Network: Netflix
Based On: Matt Wagner’s comic book series.
The Fanbase: Not fans of Beowulf, you can bet on that. This is about a vengeance-seeking grifter who partners up with those in the criminal underworld.
Everything We Know So Far: The eight-episode series stars Abubakr Ali as Hunter Rose/Grendel and is written and show-run by Resident Evil’s Andrew Dabb.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Dark comics have done well for Netflix (see also: The Umbrella Academy). So this one could find an audience who enjoy quirky humor with their supes.


Greyboy

Network: TBD
Based On: Cole Brown’s 2020 book, Greyboy: Finding Blackness in a White World
The Fanbase: Those who understand the struggles and stereotypes that face mixed-raced people. According to Deadline, “through a series of personal anecdotes and interviews with his peers, [Brown] transports us to his adolescence and explores what it’s like to be young and in search of identity. He digs into the places where, in youth, a greyboy’s difference is most acutely felt: parenting, police brutality, depression, and dating, to name a few.”
Everything We Know So Far: Grown-ish star Yara Shahidi and her mother/business partner, Keri Shahidi, are developing the book as part of their deal with ABC Signature.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It will be interesting to see how this show compares to what has already been covered in Grown-ish as well its sister shows Black-ish and Mixed-ish.


The Gryphon

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Wolfgang Hohlbein’s 2000 novel.
The Fanbase: German author Hohlbein brings with him a huge audience already. But fans of Stephen King’s work will also appreciate it …
What We Know So Far: … Because, according to a 2021 Variety article, the plot revolves around three outsiders who deal with a monster. Showrunners Erol Yesilkaya and Sebastian Marka are turning the book into six, 45-minute episodes.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Too early to tell. But executive producers Quirin Berg and Max Wiedemann were producers on 2007 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar winner The Lives of Others, and the series is being made by W&B Television — which produced three-Certifed Fresh-seasons sci-fi hit Dark for Netflix — in cooperation with DogHaus Film for Amazon Studios.


Half Bad

Network: Netflix
Based On: Sally Green’s young adult book series.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy supernatural stories as allegory, such as HBO’s True Blood.
What We Know So Far: Green’s stories are set in a world where witches and humans live together. Some witches are deemed “good” (or White) and some deemed “bad’ (or Black). Nathan is a teenager who is half White and half Black and therefore known as a Half Code. Variety reports that Giri/Haji creator Joe Barton is adapting the books and that Andy Serkis is an executive producer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Giri/Haji is Certified Fresh at 100%, and, though better known to audiences as an actor, this show brings Serkis to the producing table. The Magicians author and Time magazine book critic Lev Grossman listed Half Bad, among the best books of 2014, calling it “an enthralling fantasy in the Harry Potter tradition.”


Harry Potter

HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER'S STONE,

(Photo by Warner Bros./Everett Collection)

Network: HBO Max
Based On: J.K. Rowling’s book series.
The Fanbase: Fans of the beloved books and movies (although there still may be some backlash to Rowling from members of the trans community regarding prior comments).
What We Know So Far: The Hollywood Reporter broke the news in early 2021 that a live-action TV series based on the Harry Potter series was in extremely early talks and that no writer or cast had been set yet.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Every property in the filmed Harry Potter universe, save the most recent, has been Certified Fresh. Protego!


Havenfall

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Sara Holland’s 2020 novel.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy stories of teens who discover they have access to hidden powers or other dimensions, such as Freeform’s Shadowhunters or HBO’s His Dark Materials.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2020 that Amazon was developing the series with Divergent writer Evan Daugherty. The story follows a teenager who discovers the Colorado hotel she’s staying in for the summer has portals to other realms.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s too early to tell. But with the right star-powered casting …


Heartstopper

Network: Netflix
Based On: Alice Oseman’s graphic novels.
The Fanbase: Fans of YA queer-centric rom-coms like Hulu’s Love, Victor or even Netflix’s Sex Education.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Netflix would be turning the novels into an eight-part series with Oseman writing and Welsh director Euros Lyn (Doctor Who) directing. The story follows teen boys at an all-boys British grammar school who fall hard for each other. It also takes on more nuanced subjects like mental illness. The cast includes Joe Locke, Kit Connor and William Gao.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Oseman is untested as a TV writer, so it’s a bit too early to tell. But Lyn won a BAFTA TV Award for Last Tango in Halifax, and his experience as a director also includes Torchwood, Broadchurch, Happy Valley, Daredevil, His Dark Materials, and other titles that boast Certified Fresh seasons.


The Henna Artist

Network: Netflix
Based On: Alka Joshi’s 2020 novel
The Fanbase: Bridgerton buffs who’d also be interested in period pieces not set in England.
Everything We Know So Far: Freida Pinto stars as Lakshmi, the most in-demand henna artist of 1950s Jaipur. She’s got all the tea on the city’s wealthiest women but she also has some secrets of her own. According to Deadline, Sri Rao is producing the project through his Sri & Company, which has a mission “to tell stories that center on South Asian characters and artists, with a particular focus on women and the LGBT community.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Period-centric soap fans will want to have the details of this story tattooed all over them.


Highfire

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Eoin Colfer’s 2020 novel.
The Fanbase: Entertainment Weekly described it as “Pete’s Dragon, but, like, an adult thriller version of that.”
What We Know So Far: The animated fantasy series from Artemis Fowl’s Colfer was in early development at Amazon as of 2020. Nicolas Cage voices a dragon with interesting tastes in pop culture and a love of vodka. He used to be great, but now lives in a shack in the Louisiana swamp. It’s there that he strikes up a friendship with a young boy from a local moonshine mob.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Hopefully for Cage and his fans, this adaptation will fare better than Artemis Fowl.


High School

Network: IMDb TV
Based On: Twin sisters, and musicians, Tegan and Sara’s 2019 memoir.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy YA stories about first loves and first songs that also explore the queer experience.
Everything We Know So Far: Clea DuVall will write and direct several episodes of the half-hour series that is, to quote the press release, “told through a backdrop of 90s grunge and rave culture, the series weaves between parallel and discordant memories of twin sisters growing up down the hall from one another.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The show could easily find an audience similar to something like Hulu’s PEN15 or less raunchy classics like The Wonder Years.


The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

THE HITCHHIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY, Marvin

(Photo by Touchstone/courtesy Everett Collection)

Network: Hulu
Based On: Douglas Adams’ radio series and reading material.
The Fanbase: The cult around this sci-fi story is strong.
What We Know So Far: Deadline broke the news in 2019 that Carlton Cuse and Jason Fuchs were adapting the series about Arthur Dent, a Brit and the last surviving human after aliens destroy Earth.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Good, although it would be fitting if it got a Tomatometer score of 42.


HOOPS

Network: TBD
Based On: Kennedy Ryan’s book series.
The Fanbase: Set in the world of the NBA, this romance series about three different couples with connections to the sport could bring in fans of series like BET’s The Game.
What We Know So Far: News of the rights aquisition only recently hit, with The Traveling Picture Show Company producing the limited series. No development team has been announced yet.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could be a slam-dunk for romance fans, but it’s still early in the game.


House of the Dragon

Olivia Cooke, Emma D'Arcy, Matt Smith, and Paddy Considine

(Photo by Theo Wargo/WireImage; HBO; Jim Spellman/WireImage; Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images)

Network: HBO
Based On: George R.R. Martin’s 2018 book, Fire & Blood.
The Fanbase: People still mad about the Game of Thrones finale.
What We Know So Far: The prequel to Thrones is co-created by Martin and Colony’s Ryan Condal with Miguel Sapochnik and Condal serving as showrunners. Centering on a civil war in House Targaryen, it sets in motion events that eventually lead to the early seasons of GOT and reminds fans that history is written by the victors. Stars include Olivia Cooke, Emma D’Arcy, Matt Smith, and Paddy Considine (pictured above). HBO is also reportedly working on three more Thrones series based on the history of the Seven Kingdoms, Essos, and beyond.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The talent attached almost guarantees an engaging series. If HBO provides the support it gave the original show, securing high Tomatometer scores should be a breeze.


Read Also: “Everything We Know About Game Of Thrones Prequel Series House of the Dragon


If You Were Only White: The Life of Leroy ‘Satchel’ Paige

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Donald Spivey’s 2012 biography
The Fanbase: It’s a story not just about the famed baseball player who didn’t get enough mainstream credit, but also about the Negro League Baseball and inherent racism in the sport. This means it could attract history buffs, sports fans and anyone else who wants to learn something.
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reports that Apple has acquired the rights to the book and that Earvin “Magic” Johnson is producing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: When done right (i.e. without relying on tropes like white saviors), projects like this can do very well. The film 42, which is about Jackie Robinson, is Certified Fresh.


The Inheritance Games

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Jennifer Lynn Barnes’ 2020 novel.
The Fanbase: Secret passages, puzzles, a surprise fortune and a squabbling rich family? Think: the movies Knives Out and Clue or Peacock’s adaptation of Karen M. McManus’ One of Us Is Lying.
What We Know So Far: Deadline broke the news in 2020 that the book had been optioned ahead of its release and that Notorious co-creator Josh Berman was executive producing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: May the series be the surprise windfall that we all deserve.


The Inheritance Trilogy

Network: TBD
Based On: N.K. Jemisin’s popular sci-fi book series.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy stories of gods battling mortals and the fight to save humanity from a corrupt family that dominates it all.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Searchlight TV had optioned the series and that Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith’s Westbrook Studios would also be producing with the aim of turning the source material into an “epic, live-action ongoing fantasy series.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Think: HBO’s Game of Thrones meets Starz’s American Gods — between them lies a Certified Fresh score.


The Institute

Network: TBD
Based On: Stephen King’s 2019 novel.
The Fanbase: It might sound like an ouroboros given how often this show pays homage to King, but fans of Netflix’s Stranger Things.
What We Know So Far: In 2019, writer David E. Kelley and director Jack Bender, who have already worked together on an adaptation of King’s Bill Hodges Trilogy for Mr. Mercedes, announced plans to adapt the book as a limited series. It follows a boy with special powers who is kidnapped and sent to live in an institute where a staff perform various experiments on him and other students. He escapes and a small-town sheriff is on the case.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Mr. Mercedes has one Certified Fresh season and an overall 91% score. How special are these powers?


Interior Chinatown

Network: Hulu
Based On: Charles Yu’s National Book Award–winning novel.
The Fanbase: It’s a story of assimilation, typecasting, and career versus family — one or all which are relatable to most everyone.
What We Know So Far: Variety broke the news in 2020 that Hulu was developing a series based on the novel with Yu, who has written for shows like HBO’s Westworld and Facebook Watch’s Sorry For Your Loss.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Part of the creativeness of the book is that it’s written like a film script. Half the work is already done! Now it’s just a matter of casting.


Interview with the Vampire

Network: AMC and AMC+
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Anne Rice’s book series.
The Fanbase: Rice’s cult series helped popularize the vampire genre and people are still fascinated by the Tom Cruise-Brad Pitt film adaptation from the 1990s.
Everything We Know So Far: Sam Reid stars as the intoxicating Lestat de Lioncourt, the mentor to narrator, vampire Louis de Pointe du Lac.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Vampires had a moment in the aughts with shows like True Blood and The Vampire Diaries. The comedy What We Do In the Shadows mocks this world and received Emmy attention for it. Is that genre still undead?


Invitation to a Bonfire

Network: AMC and AMC+
Based On: Adrienne Celt’s 2018 novel inspired by writer Vladimir Nabokov’s intense marriage.
The Fanbase: It’s a psycho-thriller set at an all-girls boarding school in New Jersey during the 1930s and focuses on a naive groundskeeper who is obsessed with the school’s newest faculty member, an enigmatic novelist. She becomes ensnarled in a lethal love triangle with him and his bewitching wife.
Everything We Know So Far: Physical’s Rachel Caris Love is credited with creating the project, which AMC announced in 2021 was being developed with a core group of writers for its ““scripts-to-series” model. (The network opens rooms to develop prospective series that would move straight-to-series.)
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s a sexy thriller that’s inspired by one of the most famed novelists of the 20th century. It could definitely light a spark with audiences.


Joyland

Network: Freeform
Based On: Stephen King’s 2013 novel.
The Fanbase: Given the network, expect PG-13 spooks like Apple TV+’s Home Before Dark.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2018 that Chris Peña (Jane the Virgin) and Cyrus Nowrasteh (The Stoning of Soraya M.) were writing the pilot and that the plot centers on “a college student who takes a summer job at an amusement park in a North Carolina tourist town, confronts the legacy of a vicious murder, the fate of a dying child and the way both will change his life forever.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could bring in the YA crowd à la the network’s smash, Pretty Little Liars.


Kay Scarpetta

Network: TBD
Based On: Patricia Cornwell’s character from her crime book series.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy the best-selling franchise as well as crime buffs and people who enjoy lady crime-solvers like TNT’s Rizzoli & Isles or NBC’s Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.
Everything We Know So Far: Jamie Lee Curtis, who is a friend of the author, is working with Blumhouse TV to develop a one-hour series based on the books that follow a a forensic pathologist who — as Variety points — has been at the “center of 24 crime thrillers.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: This is one of a handful of projects about female detectives that are in the works. It could easily make a killing with the same demographic who came for Rizzoli & Isles.


Kindred

Network: FX
Based On: Octavia E. Butler’s 1979 novel.
The Fanbase: People who appreciate how different genres can be used to discuss historical fiction, à la shows like Amazon’s Them or HBO’s Watchmen.
What We Know So Far: According to Variety, the show — which is only so far at the pilot stage — follows “Dana, a young Black woman and aspiring writer who has uprooted her life of familial obligation and relocated to Los Angeles, ready to claim a future that, for once, feels all her own. But, before she can get settled into her new home, she finds herself being violently pulled back and forth in time to a nineteenth-century plantation with which she and her family are most surprisingly and intimately linked. An interracial romance threads through her past and present, and the clock is ticking as she struggles to confront the secrets she never knew ran through her blood.” Watchmen’s Branden Jacobs-Jenkins is writing the pilot and executive producing and Janicza Bravo is directing it. Other executive producers include The Americans co-creators Joe Weisberg and Joel Fields. Mallori Johnson is starring with other cast members including Micah Stock, Ryan Kwanten, Gayle Rankin, Austin Smith, Antoinette Crowe-Legacy and David Alexander Kaplan.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: With that pedigree, the show could easily find some kindred spirits among critics.


The Kingkiller Chronicle

Network: TBD
Based On: Patrick Rothfuss’ fantasy book series.
The Fanbase: Those who love the books — and especially those who love the man spearheading the adaptation, Lin-Manuel Miranda.
What We Know So Far: The series, which follows adventurer and musician Kvothe as he narrates his life to a scribe, is not the easiest to adapt because it’s not told in a linear fashion. Showtime had planned to take on the project in 2017 and then backed out. And Miranda told Entertainment Weekly in 2020 that the story is “still a code that’s waiting to be cracked.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Good. If they can ever figure out how to tell it.


Kinsey Millhone Book Series

Network: TBD
Based On: Sue Grafton’s murder series, also known as the Alphabet series.
The Fanbase: Grafton, who died in 2017, was a best-selling novelist and her fans will want to find a way to stay connected with her.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that A+E Studios had landed the rights to adapt the books, which focus on dogged private investigator Kinsey Millhone. Each book was known for starting with a letter from the alphabet, with “Y” is for Yesterday being the final installment.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: H is for hit?


Lady in the Lake

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Laura Lippman’s 2019 novel
The Fanbase: True-crime fanatics who enjoy period dramas and vigilante heroines.
What We Know So Far: Set in 1960s Baltimore, Natalie Portman plays Maddie Schwartz, a housewife and mother who becomes an investigative journalist after a murder goes unsolved. Her actions put her in contact with Lupita Nyong’o’s Cleo Sherwood, a hard-working mother who is also trying to advance Baltimore’s Black progressive agenda. Honey Boy’s Alma Har’el is directing and co-wrote the limited series. In addition to its stars, executive producers include Jean-Marc Vallée.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Pretty good. It has the star power to be Apple TV+’s answer to Hulu’s Certified Fresh limited series Little Fires Everywhere.


The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey

(Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Roadside Attractions)

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Walter Mosley’s 2010 novel.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy a creative take on a murder mystery and a complex look at aging.
What We Know So Far: Samuel L. Jackson stars in the six-part limited series about a man with dementia who has been all but forgotten by his family (and himself). But a sudden lucidity may help him solve his nephew’s death. Other cast members include Walton Goggins and Omar Miller.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Good. Mosley is a deeply admired writer with a lot of credits. The film Devil in a Blue Dress is Certified Fresh with an 88% Tomatometer score.


The Last Thing He Told Me

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Laura Dave’s 2021 suspense novel.
The Fanbase: Fans of Julia Roberts, in particular, the mysteries she’s starred in like Amazon Prime Video series Homecoming and films The Pelican Brief or Conspiracy Theory.
What We Know So Far: Jennifer Garner will star, replacing Julia Roberts, in this limited series about a woman whose husband unexpectedly vanishes. Dave is co-creating the series with Spotlight writer Josh Singer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It has a thriller element that could make the Twitterverse — and critics — very happy.


The Lincoln Lawyer

Network: Netflix
Based On: Michael Connelly’s book series.
The Fanbase: Fans of Connelly’s Mickey Haller, a Los Angeles attorney who takes on cases big and small from the back of his Lincoln Town Car.
What We Know So Far: Originally set up at CBS, the series counts David E. Kelley as an executive producer and stars The Magnificent Seven’s Manuel Garcia-Rulfo. According to Connelly’s letter on Netflix’s press site, “season 1 will consist of 10 one-hour episodes and will be based on the second book in the series, The Brass Verdict.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Solid. The Matthew McConaughey film adaptation of the books is Certified Fresh with am 83% Tomatometer.


Lives of the Mayfair Witches

Network: AMC and AMC+
Based On: Anne Rice’s book series.
The Fanbase: Horror and suspense novelist Rice is more known for her work in the vampire genre (and AMC is also developing a series based on her Interview with the Vampire because of it), but her fanbase also knows her history with witches as well.
Everything We Know So Far: In August 2021, AMC announced that it had opened a writers’ room to explore developing Rice’s book series, which follows a neurosurgeon who discovers she’s an unlikely heiress to a family of witches. Masters of Sex’s Esta Spaulding and Michelle Ashford are writing and executive producing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The witches and vampire craze had a resurgence in the mid-aughts thanks to shows like The Vampire Diaries and True Blood. But they were mostly thought to be campy or for teens. Can prestige television change that?


Lockwood & Co.

Network: Netflix
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Jonathan Stroud’s book series.
The Fanbase: Could it be a show with kids that’s not actually a kids’ show like Stranger Things? Or a silly comedy about spooky creatures like What We Do in the Shadows or Ghosts?
What We Know So Far: Edgar Wright’s production company has teamed with Attack the Block’s Joe Cornish and others on an adaptation of the book series about a group of kids who fight spirits and other villains.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: This clearly has the power to be very, very funny.


The Lord of the Rings

clockwise from top left: Robert Aramayo (photo courtesy of Amazon), Nazanin Boniadi (Steve Mack/Everett Collection), Joseph Mawle (Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images), Owain Arthur in Hard Sun ‘Not the End of the World’, (Season 1, ep. 105 (photo: Mark Johnson / ©Hulu/BBC / Courtesy: Everett Collection), Ismael Cruz Cordova at 54th New York Film Festival, October 14, 2016 (Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection), Morfydd Clark (Wolf_Marloh), Charlie Vickers (Taylor Rettke), Tom Budge (Pier Carthew), Tyroe Muhafidin (Samson Makumbe), Sophia Nomvete (Max Parker)

(Photo by clockwise from top left: courtesy of the actor; Steve Mack/Everett Collection; Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images; Mark Johnson / ©Hulu/BBC / Courtesy: Everett Collection; Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection; Courtesy Amazon Studios: Wolf_Marloh, Taylor Rettke, Pier Carthew, Samson Makumbe, Max Parker)

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Release Date: September 2, 2022
Based On: J.R.R. Tolkien’s book series
The Fanbase: Tolkienites and others who want to see how this thing plays out.
What We Know So Far: An all-star cast and an extremely expensive production will focus on a story set way, way before the events of The Hobbit or The Lord of the Rings. Click to see Rotten Tomatoes’ detailed run-down of what’s in store for the series.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Every Lord of the Rings film title in the franchise is Fresh, except the last (which just barely misses it), and the appetite for adaptations of Tolkien’s stories is there. Everyone will be watching, including some who will have schadenfreude if this fails, but if the production value holds up from films to series, it should score high.


Read Also: “Everything We Know About The Lord of the Rings Amazon Series


The Lost Apothecary

Network: Fox
Based On: Sarah Penner’s 2021 historical novel.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy a period drama with a feminist bent.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Fox is adapting the book, which “is centered around a secret apothecary shop that caters to an unusual kind of clientele. Women across the city whisper of a mysterious figure named Nella who sells well-disguised poisons to use against the oppressive men in their lives. But the apothecary’s fate is jeopardized when her newest patron, a precocious twelve-year-old, makes a fatal mistake, sparking a string of consequences that echo through the centuries.” Deadline also reported that the hunt was on for a writer and executive producer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could end up like HBO’s The Nevers, which got mixed reviews, or Showtime’s Penny Dreadful, which got a better reception. But it’s hard to know how much edge a show like this could have on broadcast TV.


Love and Death

Network: HBO Max
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Jim Atkinson and Joe Bob Briggs’ true-crime story, Evidence of Love: A True Story of Passion and Death in the Suburbs, as well as other reporting.
The Fanbase: Those who know that salacious gossip isn’t just limited to the church potluck.
Everything We Know So Far: Elizabeth Olsen stars in the series about Candy Montgomery, the Texas housewife who took an axe to her church friend, Betty Gore, in 1980. David E. Kelley is writing the project and is re-teaming with his Big Little Lies friend, Nicole Kidman, who is producing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It has all the allure and sensationalism that made projects like Richard Linklater’s Bernie, a film about a bizarre crime in a small Texas town, a Certified Fresh hit.


The Magpie Murders

Network: PBS Masterpiece
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Anthony Horowitz’s 2017 novel.
The Fanbase: People who like their murder mysteries with puzzles and blood.
What We Know So Far: Horowitz, who also created the British series Foyle’s War and Midsomer Murders, is adapting his story into a six-part limited series about a book editor who must search through the pages of her star writer’s unfinished novel to find clues as to how he died.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: As long as audiences don’t get impatient and try to Google for spoilers …


The Maidens

Network: TBD
Based On: Alex Michaelides’ 2021 novel.
The Fanbase: It’s a Cambridge-set whodunnit that could appeal to Anglophiles and mystery lovers.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Miramax Television and Scott Steindorff and Dylan Russell’s Stone Village were adapting the book, which follows “a brilliant, but troubled, therapist [who] travels to Cambridge to comfort her” niece after the girl’s best friend is murdered. But, the article continues, the therapist’s “alma mater has changed, and a cult like group of students led by a new professor has overtaken the culture.” British writer Morwenna Banks is adapting the book.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The deal was done ever before the book came out, so it will depend a lot on how much buzz the source material can build before the adaptation airs.


Malibu Rising

Network: Hulu
Based On: Taylor Jenkins Reid’s 2021 novel, her follow-up to her best-selling novel Daisy Jones & the Six (which is also being adapted).
The Fanbase: The books have a devoted following already and Amazon’s adaptation of Daisy Jones is already highly adaptation.
Everything We Know So Far: The Hollywood Reporter broke the news in 2021 that Little Fires Everywhere’s Liz Tigelaar would be adapting the book, which is set in 1983 and follows the four children of famed rocker Mick Riva as they throw their annual end-of-summer party and begin to confront family secrets.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Tigelaar already had success adapting LFE, which is also a period project about a family of four children. But the project is still in very early development.


A Man in Full

Network: Netflix
Based On: Tom Wolfe’s 1998 novel.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy the writings of the man in white who don’t know if that Bonfires of the Vanities TV adaptation will ever see the light of day (see above).
Everything We Know So Far: The Hollywood Reporter wrote in 2021 that Regina King and David E. Kelley were working on a six-episode adaptation of Wolfe’s second novel. He’ll write and serve as showrunner and she’ll direct the first three episodes. The limited series follows an Atlanta real estate mogul facing sudden bankruptcy. According to THR, “political and business interests collide when he defends his empire from those trying to capitalize on his fall from grace.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Kelley has called this adaptation “a passion project for me” and King clearly has had success in front of, and behind, the camera. But given the amount of projects Kelley has in the works (gestures at this list), can he have time to do Wolfe’s story justice?


The Man Who Fell to Earth

Chiwetel Ejiofor

(Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)

Network: Showtime
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Walter Tevis’ 1963 sci-fi novel.
The Fanbase: The story, about an alien who comes to Earth in the hope of finding a way to bring his drought-stricken community to our world, has already seen on TV adaptation, a film adaptation starring David Bowie, and a Bowie musical inspired by it.
What We Know So Far: Chiwetel Ejiofor (pictured) is starring in the project while Clarice’s Alex Kurtzman and Jenny Lumet are writing the script. Naomie Harris and Jimmi Simpson also star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The movie adaptation, as well as the recent Netflix adaptation of Tevis’ The Queen’s Gambit, are hits; Kurtzman and Lumet’s Clarice, however, is not.


The Midnight Club

Network: Netflix
Based On: Christopher Pike’s 1994 novel.
The Fanbase: Fans who grew up on Pike’s YA horror books as well as those by R.L. Stine (whose Fear Street series also got the Netflix film treatment).
What We Know So Far: Variety reports that the 10-episode series, which follows kids at a hospice center who gather to tell ghost stories, includes cast members like The Baby-Sitters Club’s Aya Furukawa and Power’s William Chris Sumpter. It’s created by The Haunting of Bly Manor’s showrunner Mike Flanagan along with Leah Fong.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It has the right set-up, including the involvement of Flanagan, who has a perfectly Fresh Tomatometer record. But will it be too depressing?


Milk Fed

Network: TBD
Based On: Melissa Broder’s 2021 novel.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy their meet-cutes with a touch of irony.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2020 that Little Fires Everywhere’s Liz Tigelaar had bought the rights to the book and would write the series. According to the article, the plot is about a “love affair between an ambivalently Jewish woman with an eating disorder and the zaftig Orthodox woman who works at her local LA frozen yogurt shop.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Rom-com enthusiasts could lap this up.


Monster of Florence

Network: TBD
Based On: Douglas Preston and Mario Spezi’s sensational best-selling crime book, The Monster Of Florence: A True Story.
The Fanbase: True-crime obsessives who also happen to be interested in governmental surveillance.
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reports that Antonio Banderas will star in the six-part limited series that is being produced by Studiocanal. The article says the story follows what happens when “the investigators become the subject of investigation by the Italian police.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It will depend on the network and marketing campaign, but this one could see a scary high Tomatometer score.


Mouthful of Birds

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Samanta Schweblin’s Spanish-language short story collection, which was published in 2008 and translated into English in 2019 by Megan McDowell.
The Fanbase: Horror, traumatic childhood, violence, madness — if it leans into the absurd, it could be a good fit for fans of Noah Hawley’s Legion or maybe Guillermo del Toro’s Pan’s Labyrinth. But if drama is more the focus, it might be better suited to fans of Haven or Castle Rock.
What We Know So Far: Hala writer-director Minhal Baig is adapting the horror drama, which Deadline describes as one that “circles madness, trauma, and violence in a darkly absurd, profoundly eerie, and ultimately human way, as our protagonist attempts to come to terms with a traumatic event from her childhood that she cannot remember.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Done right, it could easily be a buzzed-about show of the moment.


My Glory Was I Had Such Friends

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Amy Silverstein’s 2017 memoir of the support group who helped as she waited for a heart transplant.
The Fanbase: Those who love a tear-jerker.
What We Know So Far: Jennifer Garner stars in the series adaptation, which she is executive producing along with J.J. Abrams and (spoiler alert) Silverstein herself.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: As long as it doesn’t get too mushy.


My Life With the Walter Boys

Network: Netflix
Based On: Ali Novak’s 2014 coming-of-age story.
The Fanbase: The young-adult novel follows an orphaned, teen-aged New Yorker who finds herself suddenly living in rural Colorado with a new guardian and a dozen rowdy kids. It could relate to anyone who always felt they were the Stacy of their Baby-Sitters Club group.
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reports that Melanie Halsall will adapt the book and serve as showrunner and that “the streamer has given the drama series a 10-episode order, with episodes set to be approximately 50 minutes each.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Netflix’s track record with YA has been hit-or-miss. For every BSC or Never Have I Ever, there’s been a Grand Army


Naomi

Release Date: January 11, 2022
Network: The CW
Based On: Brian Michael Bendis and David F. Walker’s comic character
The Fanbase: It’s a comic series about a woman of color that’s executive produced and co-written by Ava DuVernay. It’s exactly in The CW’s wheelhouse.
Everything We Know So Far: The Wrap reports that Kaci Walfall stars as an “effortlessly cool and confident high school student” who also has the ability to travel across the multiverse.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It fits nicely in the network’s repertoire of programming that also includes DC’s Stargirl and Kung Fu.


NIMH

Network: Fox
Based On: Robert C. O’Brien’s Rats of NIMH book series.
The Fanbase: Those who grew up with the children’s book series as well as devotees to Fox’s already strong animated slate.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Fox had given a script commitment to the animated drama and was searching for a writer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Who doesn’t want to see a story about a mouse who takes her family on a crazy journey that includes discovering a colony of escaped super-intelligent lab rats? (OK, maybe cats won’t like it).


Ninth House

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Shadow and Bone young-adult author Leigh Bardugo’s 2019 novel.
The Fanbase: Ninth House was Bardugo’s first in the adult space. But she already has a loyal fanbase (and probably more so after the TV adaptation of Shadow and Bone, which is part of her successful Grishaverse series, hits Netflix).
What We Know So Far: Deadline announced the news of the deal in 2019 and explains that it is “set at an alternate Yale, Bardugo’s real-life alma mater, where the secret societies guard dangerous, magical secrets, and ghosts haunt the campus.” Bardugo will executive produce the series with her frequent collaborator Pouya Shahbazian (the Divergent film series), who is head of film and TV at New Leaf.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Netflix’s Shadow and Bone adaptation was well received, and Shahbazian most recently produced Certified Fresh films Love, Simon and American Honey. In any case, it’d be nice to confirm many assumptions about what Ivy League colleges’ secret societies are really about.


The Old Man

Jeff Bridges

(Photo by Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images)

Network: FX on Hulu
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Thomas Perry’s 2017 thriller.
The Fanbase: An action thriller about a retired intelligence officer who learns he’s the subject of an assassination attempt could appeal to mystery fans as as well as those who love classic films like North by Northwest and The Fugitive.
What We Know So Far: Star Jeff Bridges is battling lymphoma, but FX has not announced plans to recast him. Other stars include John Lithgow, Amy Brenneman, Alia Shawkat, and Gbenga Akinnagbe.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Strong Emmy potential for this one.


Olga Dies Dreaming

Network: Hulu
Based On: Xochitl Gonzalez’s novel.
The Fanbase: It’s about siblings in a gentrifying neighborhood who have issues with their politically absent and distant mother. So, anyone who has ever had an awkward night at the dinner table.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reports that Hulu has ordered a pilot based on the book, which Gonzalez is writing and Me and Earl and the Dying Girl’s Alfonso Gomez-Rejon is directing. Wanda De Jesús and Jesse Williams star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Feuding families are always interesting to watch, but this one sounds like it could bring in those who enjoyed the conflicts in series like Starz’s Vida.


One Piece

Network: Netflix
Based On: Eiichiro Oda’s popular manga series.
The Fanbase: Those already devoted to the extensive and elaborate world of the long-running series plus those new to the franchise who are interested in a story of a kid made of rubber who hires a band of pirates known as the Straw Hat Pirates to find a mythical treasure.
Everything We Know So Far: The international cast of this live-action series includes Iñaki Godoy, Mackenyu, Emily Rudd, Jacob Romero Gibson, and Taz Skylar. Steven Maeda serves as showrunner and executive producer and Matt Owens serves as writer and executive producer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: This expensive and elaborate production is one long in the making. It’s also being made for a very niche audience. Here’s hoping that Netflix finds the treasure for which it’s so clearly looking.


Oona Out of Order

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Margarita Montimore’s 2020 novel.
The Fanbase: People who are still talking about Sliding Doors or who question whether they’re doing life right.
What We Know So Far: Deadline broke the news of the adaptation in 2021, describing the premise as “as a sophisticated love story that chronicles a romance interrupted and a lifetime rearranged” and that “it revolves around Oona Lockhart, who at the strike of midnight on her nineteenth birthday wakes to find she is the surprise new inhabitant of her 55-year-old body.” The Expatriates’ Alice Bell is adapting.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Could be quirky enough to work.


Pachinko

Release Date: 2022
Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Min Jin Lee’s 2017 historical fiction.
The Fanbase: An immigration story, but also one that deals with racism and forbidden love, it could find an audience for those who watched AMC’s The Terror: Infamy.
What We Know So Far: Told in Korean, Japanese, and English and featuring an international cast, the adaptation from Soo Hugh (The Terror) will follow four generations of a Korean immigrant family.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Soo’s record as a writer and producer trends Fresh with a 94% Certified Fresh score on the first season of The Terror, co-created by David Kajganich.


Paper Girls

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Author Brian K. Vaughan and illustrator Cliff Chiang’s comic book series.
The Fanbase: The comparisons to Netflix’s Stranger Things are inevitable.
What We Know So Far: Set during Halloween 1988, a quartet of Ohio newspaper delivery girls (played by Sofia Rosinsky, Camryn Jones, Riley Lai Nelet and Fina Strazza) get caught between warring faction of time-travelers. According to Variety, as the characters “travel between our present, the past, and the future — they encounter future versions of themselves and now must choose to embrace or reject their fate.” Comedian Ali Wong will also appear.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Kind of too early to say, but the source material is pretty popular.


Peacemaker

John Cena, Danielle Brooks, Robert Patrick, Jennifer Holland, Chris Conrad

(Photo by Warner Bros. Pictures; Matt Doyle, Manfred Baumann, Dana Patrick, Helen Palmaira/Courtesy HBO Max)

Network: HBO Max
Release Date: January 13, 2022
Based On: DC Comics characters.
The Fanbase: It’s a spin-off of The Suicide Squad and created by James Gunn with an all-star cast. So, let’s just describe the fanbase as devout.
What We Know So Far: The cast includes John Cena reprising his Suicide Squad role as the show’s titular ruthless killer obsessed with peace at any cost. Danielle Brooks, Robert Patrick, and Steve Agee also star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Does it really matter what the critics think? Fans will be arguing this show’s merits until the end of time.


Percy Jackson and the Olympians

Network: Disney+
Based On: Rick Riordan’s book series
The Fanbase: The books have a devout fanbase who were not happy with the film versions.
What We Know So Far: Variety reported in May 2020 that a TV adaptation of the books was in early stages of development and Riordan’s wife, Becky, tweeted that November that a pilot script had been sent to executives.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Between the Star Wars and MCU spin-offs, Disney+ has proven it knows how to make flashy TV takes on known IPs.


The Peripheral

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: William Gibson’s 2014 sci-fi novel.
The Fanbase: Gamers and fans of alternate reality, but also those who believe that everything is connected.
What We Know So Far: The story of interconnected plots focuses on a woman in the near future who doesn’t know if the murder she saw is real or part of a virtual game she is monitoring and a London-based publicist who lives in a post-apocalyptic 22nd century. Variety reports that Westworld creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy are executive producing and stars include Jack Reynor, Chloë Grace Moretz, and Gary Carr.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: High — if audiences can keep up with the plot twists.


Pieces Of Her

Toni Collette

(Photo by odd Williamson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

Network: Netflix
Based On: Karin Slaughter’s 2018 novel.
The Fanbase: Fans of mystery-thrillers, but also maybe of ones that make you question the secrets your parents kept hidden (à la FX’s The Americans.)
What We Know So Far: Created by Fosse/Verdon’s Charlotte Stoudt, Bella Heathcote stars as a woman who begins to question her mother Laura (Toni Collette, pictured) after she easily (and violently) stops a mass shooting. Then people from Laura’s past start to appear, and they must go on the run.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s probably also worth noting that Stoudt’s credits also include Showtime’s Homeland and Netflix’s House of Cards.


Pineapple Street

Network: TBD
Based On: Alfred A. Knopf executive editor Jenny Jackson’s debut novel.
The Fanbase: It’s a tale about generational wealth and privilege, which are hot topics right now anyway. But it should be noted that one of Jackson’s writers at her day job is Crazy Rich Asians’ Kevin Kwan.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Picturestart had acquired the rights to the book.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Topics like this can be seen in high-brow programming like Succession to teen dramas like the new version of Gossip Girl. It could easily draw in a fascinated audience who want to enjoy hate-watching the rich.


The Players Table

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Jessica Goodman’s 2020 novel, They Wish They Were Us.
The Fanbase: Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars fans, but also those who like actress Sydney Sweeney (Euphoria) and/or musician Halsey.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that HBO Max was developing the series. It would star the women (the latter in her TV acting debut) as characters from an affluent Long Island community who are attempting to solve their friend’s murder — which means also questioning what happened to them.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The odds seem in its favore: Sweeney has appeared in a good bit of Fresh/Certified Fresh fare, and Annabelle Attanasio (writer-director of 100% Certified Fresh film Mickey and the Bear) is attached to write, direct, and executive produce the series.


The Power

Leslie Mann

(Photo by Ian West/PA Images via Getty Images)

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Naomi Alderman’s 2016 sci-fi novel.
The Fanbase: The women’s empowerment story you may not have been expecting.
What We Know So Far: Leslie Mann (pictured) stars in the 10-episode series that, according to Elle magazine, “takes place in an era where women develop an electrical current within their bodies, aiding their rise to power across the globe.” The article also reports that Alderman is creating the series and that The Handmaid’s Tale’s Reed Morano is directing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Mann has a mixed Tomatometer track record, but is ultimately one of Hollywood’s most likable stars. Add a jolt of Handmaid’s Tale talent, and we’d be shocked if it didn’t.


Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Sara Shepard’s book series
The Fanbase: This version is from Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa and others, so expect to see some fans of The CW’s Riverdale in addition to PLL die-hards.
What We Know So Far: Chandler Kinney, Bailee Madison and Maia Reficco will star in the new version of Pretty Little Liars that’s coming to HBO Max. Set two decades after a series of tragic events almost ripped the blue-collar town of Millwood apart, PLL: Original Sin focuses on a new set of teens who find themselves tormented by an unknown “A”ssailant and made to pay for the secret sin their parents committed. Kinney will play Tabby, an aspiring director and horror movie buff who harbors a secret. Reficco will play Not, a striving and sardonic track star who’s working hard to get her life back to normal after a summer spent in juvenile detention.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The original has an 81% series score, but no Certified Fresh seasons. Will this get an A+ with critics? Aguirre-Sacasa could make that happen.


Reacher

Alan Ritchson

(Photo by Robin L Marshall/Getty Images)

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Release Date: February 4, 2022
Based On: The Lee Child book series.
The Fanbase: People already tuning into Amazon for its Jack Ryan series or who enjoy other stories of high-stakes investigations like the Bourne movies or USA’s adaptation of Shooter.
What We Know So Far: Variety reported in 2020 that Blue Mountain State and The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’s Alan Ritchson will star and that first season will focus on the first book in the series, 1997’s The Killing Floor.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Hopefully better than the Tom Cruise–starring film adaptations (the first did decent; the second did not).


Red Rising

Network: TBD
Based On: Pierce Brown’s sci-fi novel series.
The Fanbase: Reviews for the books include comparisons to Hunger Games and Ender’s Game, so people who’d like to see movies like that in TV series form.
What We Know So Far: The project, reportedly, has had a lot of stops and starts. Brown told the Orlando Sentinel in 2019 that “I put together a pretty good team” and that “we’ve been developing it in private so that when we take it out, it fully reflects the vision.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Pretty good if it can ever get made.


The Reunion

Network: TBD
Based On: Guillaume Musso’s 2018 novel, La Jeune Fille et la Nuit.
The Fanbase: Those who like their sexy whodunnits about not-so-well-kept secrets to be filmed in the south of France.
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reported in 2021 that Ioan Gruffudd, Ivanna Sakhno, and Grégory Fitoussi are among the stars in the English-language series about three friends “bound by a tragic secret tied to the disappearance of a high school girl who went missing 25 years ago in the region” who reconnect at a high school reunion. Bill Eagles is directing for MGM International TV Productions.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could be a grown-up I Know What You Did Last Summer — in either a good or a bad way.


Revelations

Network: The CW
Based On: Stephen King’s short story, “The Revelations of ‘Becka Paulson.”
The Fanbase: A jaded audience who appreciates the dark humor of series like The CW’s Reaper or TBS’s
Miracle Workers.
What We Know So Far: The CW confirmed it was developing the series in 2020, with Last Man Standing’s Maise Culver serving a writer. The story follows a wide-eyed young woman who accidentally shoots herself in the head with a nail gun, causing an over-it Jesus to force her to be the one to stop the apocalypse by showing why Earth is worth redeeming.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could work as a snarky take on a procedural, similar to The CW’s iZombie, which has a 90% series score and a Certified Fresh first season.


Ringworld

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Larry Niven’s sci-fi series.
The Fanbase: Devotees of these books have seen many attempted adaptations explode. They want this one to work.
What We Know So Far: Prolific writer-director-producer Akiva Goldsman is working on the series, telling Collider in 2020 that Game of Thrones’ Alan Taylor would direct the pilot. Set in the future, the story focuses on Louis Gridley Wu — a bored genius who joins a young woman and a couple of aliens on an adventure to explore, and uncover, the mysterious of an area beyond their world.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It had better be (see “the fanbase” above).


The Roald Dahl Story Co.

Network: Netflix
Based On: The children’s book author’s collection of works
The Fanbase: Those who grew up with Dahl’s works like James and the Giant Peach and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory who can also ignore his problematic legacy.
Everything We Know So Far: In 2021, Netflix acquired The Roald Dahl Story Co., which manages the late British novelist’s catalogue of work. How this materializes on screen is yet to be seen.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Did Netflix win the golden ticket or will it end up drowning itself in a chocolate river? It’s still too early to tell.


Roar

Nicole Kidman in March 2020

(Photo by Vera Anderson/WireImage)

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Cecelia Ahern’s 2018 book of short stories.
The Fanbase: This is anthology series that shows how women of various backgrounds are (or aren’t) surviving. It shouldn’t be hard to find an audience for this post-COVID.
What We Know So Far: Nicole Kidman (pictured) executive produces and stars in the eight-episode series created by GLOW’s Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch. Other stars include Cynthia Erivo, Merritt Wever and GLOW lead Alison Brie.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Could this be the primal scream of a show that so many women need?


Rodham

Network: Hulu
Based On: Curtis Sittenfeld’s alternate history about Hillary Clinton.
The Fanbase: Fans of the former Secretary of State and presidential candidate who believe her husband’s career halted her own.
What We Know So Far: In 2020, Hulu announced that it was teaming with The Affair creator Sarah Treem on this imagination of what would have happened had Hillz not married Bill.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Given how much heat Hulu got for its documentary series about Clinton, we’d say there’s an audience, and if Treem can duplicate her past success, the series has a great chance.


Sag Harbor

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Colson Whitehead’s 2009 novel.
The Fanbase: Fans of Whitehead’s work, as well as others interested in depictions of race and class divides in wealthy suburban America.
Everything We Know So Far: Set in 1985, the series is told from the perspective of a Black teen who is spending his summer away from his Manhattan prep school and in an enclave of the Hamptons that’s populated by affluent Black families. Deadline reported in 2021 that Laurence Fishburne and producing partner Helen Sugland were executive producing and that Daniel “Koa” Beaty is writing the pilot.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Fox’s Our Kind of People has a similar setting and comparisons will be drawn, but others might look to the long-running ABC comedy Black-ish (on which Fisburne appears and where he and Sugland serve as executive producers).


The Sandman

Sandman cast

(Photo by Netflix)

Network: Netflix
Release Date: 2022
Based On: Neil Gaiman’s comic book series.
The Fanbase: Gaiman’s series adaptations like Starz’s American Gods and Amazon’s Good Omens have frequently pleased his fans and expanded his audience.
What We Know So Far: After — fittingly — being stuck in development hell for years, Wonder Woman writer Allan Heinberg is now heading this series about the king of dreams (Tom Sturridge) who escapes after an 105-year imprisonment and sets about restoring order to his kingdom. Gwendoline Christie also stars as Lucifer with other cast members including Vivienne Acheampong, Boyd Holbrook, and Charles Dance. Note that this story is not directly related to Lucifer, the Tom Ellis series that relies on Gaiman’s interpretation of the fallen angel.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Given Gaiman’s track record, the chances are very good.


Read Also: “Everything We Know About Netflix’s The Sandman Series


Separation Anxiety

Network: TBD
Based On: Laura Zigman’s 2020 novel.
The Fanbase: The short answer could easily be “moms.” But there’s also something there for dog lovers, people going through a mid-life crisis or who are simply anxious (so, everyone).
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reports that Mare of Easttown‘s Julianne Nicholson will executive produce and star in the series about a middle-aged woman going through marriage trouble and empty nest syndrome who decides to wear her dog in a baby sling. Studio Wiip is developing, but no network or streamer has been announced.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The book is awkward and darkly funny, but also can be very sad. It could bring in people who enjoyed similarly unique works like Showtime’s Work in Progress or Netflix’s Lady Dynamite.


Seven Days in June

Network: TBD
Based On: Tia Williams’ 2021 romance novel.
The Fanbase: Romance lovers, especially those who enjoy steamy sex scenes more than meet-cutes.
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reported in 2021 that Will Packer’s production company partnered with Red Arrow Studios’ Kinetic Content to secure the film and television rights to the story about a successful erotica author and single mother who learns her former flame has returned to town. Packer is quoted in the article as saying “the sexiness, the intensity, the unashamed Blackness makes this an ideal project for us at Team Packer. Tia is so incredibly talented and Kinetic Content are such perfect partners, this is the right project for the right team at the right time!”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The story of mixed connections and honest portrayals of love scenes could bring in audiences who were drawn to Hulu’s Normal People.


The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle

Network: Netflix
Based On: Stuart Turton’s 2018 novel.
The Fanbase: A whodunnit that mixes Knives Out with a sort of Freaky Friday–like twist.
What We Know So Far: Sophie Petzal is adapting the story of a murder mystery at a country estate that would be a lot easier to solve if you didn’t keep waking up in someone else’s body.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The plot is intriguing, but will the streamer’s binge-watch release schedule ruin the surprise?


Shelter

Network: Amazon Prime Video or IMDb TV
Based On: The books in Harlan Coben’s young adult series.
The Fanbase: Coben’s library of books are beloved (as evident by other entries on this list), but this story of an orphaned teen who discovers his new girlfriend — and late dad — may not be who he thought they were, could bring in a captive younger audience.
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reported in 2021 that Amazon Studios was making a pilot based on the first book in Coben’s Mickey Bolitar book series. Shadowhunters’ Ed Decter will serve as showrunner. The Variety article also states that, if picked up to series, the show could stream on either Amazon Prime Video or newer platform IMDb TV. It was later reported that Colin in Black & White star Jaden Michael will lead this cast.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The show could find an audience akin to other programs that are ostensibly about young adults but also entice people old enough to vote and rent cars (see also: Shadowhunters, His Dark Materials).


The Shining Girls

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Lauren Beukes’ 2013 novel.
The Fanbase: This metaphysical thriller that makes one question what’s really happening and if the narrator is trustworthy could interest people who claim Memento is their favorite Christopher Nolan movie.
What We Know So Far: Elisabeth Moss stars as a reporter who survives a violent attack but whose sense of reality begins to shift as she searches for her assailant. Wagner Moura also stars and Strange Angel’s Silka Luisa serves as showrunner and Phillipa Soo also stars.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Moss’s track record for pretty much everything is rock solid.


Slam!

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Pamela Ribon and Veronica Fish’s graphic novels
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy female-centric adult animated series like Harley Quinn.
What We Know So Far: Ribon is adapting the half-hour series that Deadline reports is “set in the fast-paced, hard-hitting, super-cheeky, all-female world of banked track roller derby, follows two young women who will have to decide if their budding friendship is stronger than the pull of a team when a win is on the line.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Too early to tell how long this bout will go.


Sleeping Beauties

Stephen King and Owen King's novel "Sleeping Beauties"

(Photo by Scribner)

Network: AMC
Based On: The 2017 novel co-written by Stephen and Owen King.
The Fanbase: Exhausted women everywhere.
What We Know So Far: While no casting news has been announced, the logline is an understandable one: “In a small Appalachian town, there’s a strange mystical occurrence that causes all the women to fall asleep, leaving the men to try and rescue them. But do the women want to be rescued?”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: TV adaptations of King’s projects have been hit or miss, and AMC also couldn’t get a strong audience for the adaptation of his other son, Joe Hill’s, NOS4A2.


Read Also:Every Upcoming Stephen King Movie and TV Adaptation


Slow Horses

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Mick Herron’s spy novels Slow Horses and Dead Lions.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy a British spy drama with scenery-chewing actors.
What We Know So Far: According to Deadline, Gary Oldman stars as “Jackson Lamb, a brilliant but irascible leader of a group of spies who end up in MI5’s Slough House, having been exiled from the mainstream for their mistakes.” Kristen Scott Thomas stars as a high-ranking MI5 official and Jonathan Pryce and Olivia Cooke also star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Oldman won raves when he starred in the film adaptation of John le Carre’s Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, which is Certified Fresh with an 83% score.


The Spook Who Sat by the Door

Lee Daniels

(Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for TIME)

Network: FX
Based On: Sam Greenlee’s 1969 novel.
The Fanbase: Although this is a work of fiction, audiences who appreciate stories of government corruption and civil rights like BlackKklansman may relate.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that FX had ordered a pilot of the adaptation of this novel about the CIA’s first Black member. Lee Daniels (pictured) is producing, Raising Dion’s Leigh Dana Jackson is writing, and The Twilight Zone’s Gerard McMurray is directing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Good, given the success of BlackKklansman and similar recent projects like Judas and the Black Messiah.


A Spy Among Friends

Network: Spectrum
Based On: Ben Macintyre’s 2014 novel.
The Fanbase: Spy seekers, especially those who want Cold War-era clearance.
Everything We Know So Far: Damian Lewis and Guy Pearce star in the story written by Alexander Cary about two spies who were friends — one of whom was deceiving the other the whole time.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: The Americans and Homeland fans will definitely be running surveillance on this show.


The Spy Who Came In from the Cold

Network: AMC
Based On: John le Carré’s 1963 novel.
The Fanbase: AMC is hoping to draw an audience similar to those who came out for the Tom Hiddleston–Hugh Laurie adaptation of le Carre’s The Night Manager.
What We Know So Far: The project was announced in 2017 with Oscar winner Simon Beaufoy set to write.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Depends. Night Manager got a ton of buzz. The adaptation of le Carre’s The Little Drummer Girl got good reviews — and a 95% Certified Fresh Tomatometer score — but not as much attention.


The Stationery Shop

Network: HBO
Based On: Marjan Kamali’s 2019 novel.
The Fanbase: It’s a story of star-crossed lovers in 1950s Tehran who reconnect as adults, meaning it could bring in romance die-hards who still cry if they catch The Notebook while cruising through channels but also those who are politically savvy and care about historical cultural affairs.
Everything We Know So Far: Insecure showrunner Prentice Penny and writer-actress Mozhan Marnò are working with author Kamali on the adaptation.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s too early too tell. We’ll know more provided the project doesn’t stay, well, stationary.


Stone Junction

Network: TBD
Based On: Jim Dodge’s 1998 novel.
The Fanbase: Set in 1980s California with a sci-fi twist, it clearly draws influence from George Lucas’ work.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Game of Thrones’ Alan Taylor was directing the pilot that “depicts the fantastical childhood and adolescence of Daniel Pearse and culminates with his battle for life against oblivion” that is also “a tall tale of rebellion, romance, revenge, and magic, woven into an American coming-of-age story.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It really depends on the casting and the channel it’s on, but the same kind of audience that came out for the film adaptation of Ender’s Game could enjoy this.


Strange Planet

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Nathan Pyle’s webcomic and graphic novels.
The Fanbase: The animated series is based on a beloved comic and is co-created by Rick and Morty’s Dan Harmon. The fanbase is plenty there.
Everything We Know So Far: The press release’s logline keeps it simple by stating that Strange Planet “tells profound and heartfelt stories about beings on a distant planet not unlike our own.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It may not be a huge windfall for Apple TV+, but it could definitely bring in the cult audience the already obsesses over other projects in its orbit like Rick and Morty.


The Summer I Turned Pretty

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Jenny Han’s book series.
The Fanbase: People who loved Netflix’s whimsy film adaptations of Han’s To All the Boys series.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reports that Amazon has ordered an eight-part series based on the book with Han writing the pilot. She will co-showrun with Haven’s Gabrielle Stanton. Newcomer Lola Tung stars. The story follows a multigenerational family. Plus, there’s a love-triangle involving two brothers.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Fans of the books are already choosing which brother’s team to be on.


Super Pumped

Release Date: February 27, 2022
Network: Showtime
Based On: Mike Isaac’s Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber.
The Fanbase: Tech bros and those who hate them.
Everything We Know So Far: The plan is for the show to be an anthology series where each season — according to the press release — “explores a story that rocked the business world to its core and changed culture.” The first season will focus on Travis Kalanick with Joseph Gordon-Levitt playing the Uber CEO.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could easily be the next Entourage, Succession, Billions or Silicon Valley. But lots of programs have looked at the sleek business world, including documentaries like Hulu’s WeWork or Nat Geo’s Valley of the Boom. Will audiences (ahem) byte?


Surfside Girls

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Kim Dwinell’s 2017 graphic novel.
The Fanbase: Who knew there was a Venn diagram intersecting people who love both stories of surfers and ghosts?
Everything We Know So Far: Miya Cech and YaYa Gosselin headline the kids and family story about surfer girls who try to break a curse plaguing a pirate ghost.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could catch a wave and see success similar to Netflix’s Fear Street adaptations.


Surviving the White Gaze

Network: TBD
Based On: Rebecca Carroll’s 2021 memoir
The Fanbase: Writer and cultural critic Carroll has cultivated a fanbase though these endeavors as well as through her Tweets and her podcast, Come Through. The memoir is also a story of trans-racial adoption and a search for racial identity — topics that are just beginning to receive mainstream attention.
Everything We Know So Far: Carroll is adapting her work as a limited series and MGM/UA Television have acquired the rights.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s a very delicate topic that may not find as widespread appeal as some of the other titles on this list. But it could certainly find an audience of those curious to know more about the subjects.


The Sympathizer

Network: HBO
Based On: Viet Thanh Nguyen’s Pulitzer Prize–winning 2015 novel.
The Fanbase: The book tells the story of a half-Vietnamese, half-French undercover communist agent who was held as a political prisoner during the Vietnam conflict and was forced into a confession. He then lived in exile in the United States.
What We Know So Far: It was reported in 2021 that Park Chan-wook (Oldboy, The Little Drummer Girl) was directing and that A24 and Rhombus Media were producing. Late that year, it was revealed that Robert Downey Jr. would star and that HBO had ordered the project to series.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s a hot-blooded topic that could garner quite an audience with the prestige-drama set.


The Talisman

Steven Spielberg

(Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images)

Network: Netflix
Based On: Stephen King and Peter Straub’s 1984 fantasy horror novel.
The Fanbase: King fans have been waiting for this one for decades. But its premise could also draw in fans of other series about kids who straddle different worlds, like HBO Max’s Harry Potter series or HBO’s His Dark Materials.
What We Know So Far: With producers including Steven Spielberg (pictured) and Stranger Things’ Matt and Ross Duffer, the plot follows a 12-year-old boy who goes on a quest to find someone who could help his dying mother. The journey takes him to another, much more sinister, version of our world. Stranger Things’ Curtis Gwinn would serve as showrunner.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: According to The Hollywood Reporter, which broke the news, this has been a passion project of Spielberg’s even before the book was published. But it also may have competition from a film version of the novel, but all signs point to a winner.


Tell Me Lies

Network: Hulu
Based On: Carola Lovering’s 2018 novel.
The Fanbase: Anyone who is still fascinated by past relationships — especially if they were toxic.
Everything We Know So Far: Grace Van Patten plays Lucy Albright, a sheltered college student who has a reputation as an ice queen but is really masking a childhood trauma. Then she meets Stephen DeMarco, who has a dark streak that helps bring her demons to life. Meaghan Oppenheimer is writing the pilot and executive producers include Emma Roberts. The series got a straight-to-series order in August 2021.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could bring in the appeal of fellow Hulu series Normal People, which is also a book adaptation and has a high Tomatometer score.


This Is Going to Hurt

Network: AMC
Based On: Adam Kay’s memoir, This Is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor.
The Fanbase: Anyone who spent the quarantine (re)watching NBC’s Scrubs.
What We Know So Far: Ben Whishaw stars as a fictionalized version of Kay, whose memoir AMC says was “scribbled in secret after endless days, sleepless nights and missed weekends” and “tell(s) the unvarnished truth of life as a doctor working in Obstetrics and Gynecology.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: 1. Whishaw. 2. The series is  produced by global content company SISTER (Giri/Haji, Chernobyl, Gangs of London — all Certified Fresh). 3. Lucy Forbes (In My Skin, The End of the F***cking World season 2 — Fresh and Certified Fresh) is confirmed as the series lead director. 4. AMC. Can we call it now?


Three-Body Problem

Liu Cixin's book trilogy, including Three Body Problem

(Photo by Netflix)

Network: Netflix
Based On: Liu Cixin’s book trilogy.
The Fanbase: Those searching for extraterrestrial life — and wondering what we do when we find it.
What We Know So Far: Netflix announced in 2020 that it was adapting the comprehensive texts as a series through a partnership with Game of Thrones David Benioff and D.B. Weiss and The Terror: Infamy’s Alexander Woo.* Casting includes Jovan Adepo, Tsai Chin and Marlo Kelly.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Netflix knows the stakes are high to get this one right. Plus, Benioff, Weiss, and Woo have a lot of Certified Fresh seasons between them.


Three Pines

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Louise Penny’s crime novels.
The Fanbase: People who enjoy quirky investigators, especially ones who are French Canadian but who speak English with a British accent.
What We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2020 that Amazon was adapting the books — known for their hero, Chief Inspector Gamache — and The Tunnel’s Emilia di Girolamo will write with Humans director Sam Donovan serving as head director.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s a bit early to tell, but both The Tunnel and Humans have Fresh scores, with the latter having one Certified Fresh season.


Three Women

Network: Showtime
Based On: Lisa Taddeo’s 2019 book.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy inspirational stories about women unleashing their voices and speaking out about what they want. Showtime describes it as an “intimate, haunting portrayal of American female desire” which brings to mind series like the channel’s The Affair.
Everything We Know So Far: Shailene Woodley plays Gia, a writer who encourages three “ordinary” women to tell their stories of relationships: Lina, a homemaker in a passionless marriage, DeWanda Wise’s Sloane, a glamorous entrepreneur in an open marriage, and Maggie, a student who accuses her married English professor of an inappropriate relationship. Laura Eason serves as showrunner and is an executive producer along with Kathy Ciric and Emmy Rossum.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could definitely bring some sizzle to Showtime subscribers.


A Time For Mercy

Network: HBO
Based On: John Grisham’s 2020 novel, a follow up to his A Time to Kill and Sycamore Row.
The Fanbase: Those who relate to Grisham’s Jake Brigance character, a modern-day Atticus Finch who defends the downtrodden in often racially-charged cases.
What We Know So Far: Variety reports that Matthew McConaughey, who played the character in the 1996 movie adaptation of A Time to Kill will star in this series, reporting that his hero’s latest case is “a young man who killed his mother’s boyfriend, a deputy sheriff, with the boy claiming the man was abusive toward his mother, himself, and his little sister.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It’s certainly topical, A Time to Kill was Fresh, and the McConaughey’s True Detective season 1 performance earned that multiple-Emmy-winning season its 87% Certified Fresh score.


The Time Traveler’s Wife

Network: HBO
Based On: Audrey Niffenegger’s 2003 novel.
The Fanbase: Fans of Starz’s Outlander who wonder what Jamie was up to when Claire was away and others who enjoy a good sci-fi tinged romance.
What We Know So Far: Sherlock’s Steven Moffat is writing this adaptation with Theo James and Rose Leslie set to star as a man who has the ability to travel through time and the spouse whose life is impacted by this power. Game of Thrones’ David Nutter is an executive producer and will direct all of the six-episode first season. Desmin Borges (You’re the Worst) and Natasha Lopez (Runner Runner) also star. Production began in 2021 in New York.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Fingers crossed that it will be better than the 2009 movie version.


Tokyo Vice

Network: HBO Max
Based On: Jake Adelstein’s 2009 memoir, Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan.
The Fanbase: With the first episode directed by Michael Mann and written by J.T. Rogers, this is a story for those who want an adrenaline rush without leaving their living room.
What We Know So Far: Ansel Elgort stars as a Missouri journalist who moves to Japan and gets sucked into the city’s criminal underworld. Ken Watanabe and Rachel Keller also star.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It may depend on if the show can keep this suspense level going for an entire season.


True Blood

True Blood season 1 HBO poster

(Photo by HBO)

Network: HBO
Based On: Author Charlaine Harris’ The Southern Vampire Mysteries book series (also known as the Sookie Stackhouse Novels).
The Fanbase: Fan(g)s who want a re-do of the original series’ final season.
What We Know So Far: TVLine reported in 2020 that HBO was in extremely early stages of developing a reboot of the popular drama series with NOS4A2 creator Jami O’Brien co-writing the pilot with Riverdale’s Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It depends on how enthusiastic HBO is to sink its teeth into more of the edgy soap. Aguirre-Sacasa has a great Tomatometer record.


Under the Banner of Heaven

Network: FX
Based On: Jon Krakauer’s 2003 true-crime story.
The Fanbase: Those who are familiar with the story’s grisly, family-centric murder — as well as those who may be fascinated by the crime and the fundamentalist Mormon beliefs associated with the perpetrator.
Everything We Know So Far: Andrew Garfield and Daisy Edgar-Jones star in the limited series and Dustin Lance Black, who grew up in the LDS church, serves as creator. David Mackenzie is directing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Expect a lot of backlash from the LSD community, which could only serve to booster exposure for the series, the book and the case. Also, expect lots of Emmy buzz.


Valdemar Universe

Network: TBD
Based On: Mercedes Lackey’s fantasy book series.
The Fanbase: It’s an LGBTQ-positive story of a persecuted and abused son of a noble person who finds himself, and love, in an unexpected place. This could strike a cord with many.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reported in 2021 that Jumanji producer Radar Pictures was adapting the series and that EastSiders creator Kit Williamson was adapting it with author Brittany Cavallaro. According to Deadline, “the first season will be adapted from the Last Herald-Mage trilogy, comprising of Magic’s Pawn, which was first published in 1989, Magic’s Price and Magic’s Promise.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Inclusivity and fantasy are two big issues right now …


Vampire Academy

Network: Peacock
Based On: Richelle Mead’s young adult book series.
The Fanbase: Fans of the books include one of the series’ very noteworthy creators — The Vampire Diaries’ Julie Plec. So there’s a lot to bite into there.
Everything We Know So Far: Peacock gave the project a series order in 2021, with Plec co-writing with Marguerite MacIntyre. According to Variety, the plot follows “two young women’s friendship transcends their strikingly different classes as they prepare to complete their education and enter royal vampire society.” A film adaptation bombed when it came out in 2014.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: If there’s anyone who can prove that there’s still life in the hot teen vampire genre …


The Vanishing Half

Network: HBO
Based On: Brit Bennett’s 2020 novel of historical fiction.
The Fanbase: It’s a story of race and family and knowing your ancestry that would interest anyone who ever took a DNA test.
What We Know So Far: Aziza Barnes and Jeremy O. Harris are adapting and executive producing the book about light-skin Black twins from a small Southern town. After they escape to New Orleans, they go their separate ways — one deciding to live her life as a white woman. No casting has been announced, but other executive producers include Issa Rae.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Casting will play a major part in its success, but Barnes, Harris, and Rae all have good Tomatometer track records.


Verona

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: William Shakespeare’s plays
The Fanbase: Those who want to brush up their Shakespeare as well as fans of teen dramas.
Everything We Know So Far: Part of Gloria Calderón Kellett’s development deal with Amazon, she created the show with Roja Gashtili, Julia Lerman and Kelly Younger and, according to Deadline, “takes the classic Shakespearean stories you know and love out of the renaissance and into present-day high school” and follows “the Del Castillo sisters Nico, Delilah, and Inez as they play out familiar stories interweaved together in fair Verona where we lay our scene.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Hopefully it will be more comedy than tragedy.


The Walking Dead Daryl and Carol Series

Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon, Melissa McBride as Carol Peletier - The Walking Dead _ Season 10 - Photo Credit: Jackson Lee Davis/AMC

Network: AMC
Based On: Robert Kirkman’s TWD comic book characters.
The Fanbase: Fans of the popular TWD franchise, particularly Norman Reedus’ Daryl Dixon and Melissa McBride’s Carol Peletier.
What We Know So Far: “They’re going to be off on a different journey,” showrunner Angela Kang told Entertainment Weekly in 2020. “And that show’s going to feel hopefully a little tonally fresh. They’re just in a different stage of their lives and it’s more of a road show, which I think will be really fun.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: TWD fans will quickly devour this show, and TWD has been on a Certified Fresh streak of late. Maybe the series’ final season will tell us more about its spinoff’s chances.


Washington Black

Network: Hulu
Based On: Esi Edugyan’s 2018 novel.
The Fanbase: Those who enjoy period-set event series, particularly ones with Emmy-winning leads.
Everything We Know So Far: The story is centered on the titular 11-year-old boy, who must flee his life on a Barbados sugar plantation after a shocking death. Sterling K. Brown, who is also executive producing the project, stars as Medwin Harris, Wash’s mentor who is known for the larger-than-life persona he gained while traveling the world after a traumatic childhood as a Black refugee in Nova Scotia. Twilight Zone’s Selwyn Seyfu Hinds is adapting the story.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Provided fans don’t get too distracted by seeing Brown in a more ostentatious part that the TV work he’s known for on This Is Us and American Crime Story, this seems like a safe bet.


We Own This City

Network: HBO
Based On: Investigative journalist Justin Fenton’s look at Baltimore police corruption, We Own This City: A True Story of Crime, Cops and Corruption.
The Fanbase: The Wire’s David Simon and George Pelecanos know their brand and are writing and executive producing this limited series for HBO. Their fans also know, and appreciate, their work. Plus, the attention toward campaigns like Black Lives Matter can also bring in another fanbase.
Everything We Know So Far: Set in 2015 in Baltimore during the uprising over Freddie Gray’s death, it follows the struggle to get drugs and guns off the street and the corrupt cop who used his power and exploited his ranking to steal from citizens and skim from drug busts.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Pretty good. Just here’s hoping that it won’t take people as long to find this series as it did for them to discover The Wire.


While Justice Sleeps

Network: TBD
Based On: Georgia politician Stacey Abrams’ 2021 novel.
The Fanbase: The fanbase for Abrams herself, who is worshipped among progressives for her help in recent elections, might be stronger for that of the book — her first to be published under her real name (she published other titles under the pseudonym Selena Montgomery).
Everything We Know So Far: Variety reported in 2021 that studio Working Title Television, which is part of NBCUniversal International Studios, won the rights to the novel in a bidding war. The article includes the following synopsis: “Avery Keene, a brilliant young law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Wynn, whose descent into a coma plunges the court, and the country, into turmoil and turns Avery’s life upside down. She is immediately notified that Justice Wynn has left instructions for her to serve as his legal guardian and power of attorney. Plunged into an explosive role she never anticipated, Avery discovers not only that Justice Wynn had been secretly researching one of the most controversial cases before the court — a proposed merger between an American biotech company and an Indian genetics firm, which promises to unleash breathtaking results in the medical field, but also that Justice Wynn suspected a dangerous conspiracy that infiltrates the highest power corridors of Washington.”
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: While it would be great if Abrams and her brilliant legal mind became the next John Grisham, her supporters would hope that a successful TV show would not mean she’d leave politics.


The White House Plumbers

Network: HBO
Based On: Egil “Bud” Krogh and Matthew Krogh’s 2009 book, Integrity: Good People, Bad Choices, and Life Lessons from the White House
The Fanbase: History buffs who still enjoy kicking around Nixon.
Everything We Know So Far: Deadline reports that this five-part limited series, which is based on public records as well as the Krough’ book, will look at Howard Dean (Domhnall Gleeson), E. Howard Hunt (Woody Harrelson) G. Gordon Liddy (Justin Theroux) and the men behind the Watergate break-in that led to the end of Richard Nixon’s presidency. Veep executive producers Alex Gregory and Peter Huyck are writing the script with that show’s showrunner, David Mandel, directing.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: With these guys involved, it sounds a lot more enjoyable than Showtime’s The Comey Rule.


Wings of Fire

Network: Netflix
Based On: Tui T. Sutherland’s book series.
The Fanbase: According to the press release, it’s a family-friendly animated series about dragons who “embark on an evolving quest that will bring them face to face with their true selves and the overwhelming scope of this savage war they are destined to bring to an end.”
Everything We Know So Far: Ava DuVernay’s production company is adapting the series with Dan Milano (Glitch Techs), Christa Starr (Mystery Science Theater 3000), Justin Ridge (Star Wars Resistance) serving as showrunners for the 10-episode series.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Netflix’s animated programs have included She-Ra the Princess of Power, Carmen Sandiego and other shows that interest kids without melting parents’ minds. So there’s a wing and a prayer that this one could work too.


The Wives

Network: Amazon Prime Video
Based On: Tarryn Fisher’s 2019 novel.
The Fanbase: People who enjoy saucy thrillers that not only ask how well you know your spouse — but how well do you want to know your spouse.
What We Know So Far: Kayla Alpert is adapting this book about a woman who knows her husband is married to two other women (he only sees her on Thursdays). But her curiosity gets the best of her and she befriends one of them — making her ask a lot more questions about her partner.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Alpert is also an executive producer of Netflix’s Wednesday, which is about the Addams Family heroine. This might suggest that she knows how to fill this with dark comedy and tantalizing scenarios.


Wool

Network: Apple TV+
Based On: Hugh Howey’s story as part of his post-apocalyptic Silo series.
The Fanbase: It’s a show about a man who lost his wife after a post-apocalyptic event (no, not that show).
What We Know So Far: Variety reported in 2018 that Into the Badlands’ LaToya Morgan was adapting the series for AMC. Howey may have been getting impatient. In 2019, he tweeted a request for AMC to cast Sam Elliot as one of the leads. The project now has a series order at Apple TV+ with Justified’s Graham Yost writing and Defending Jacob’s Morten Tyldum directing. Dune’s Rebecca Ferguson will play the female lead, Juliette, who is described as “an independent and hardworking engineer” who lives in “a ruined and toxic future where a community exists in a giant silo underground, hundreds of stories deep.” Tim Robbins plays Bernard, the head of IT for the Silo.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: Yost has spun stories out of novels before. And he’s got plenty of material to work with for Wool. But can it find an audience among the myriad of other post-apocalyptic programming?


Yellow Bird

Network: Paramount+
Based On: Sierra Crane Murdoch’s 2020 true-crime story, Yellow Bird: Oil, Murder and a Woman’s Search for Justice in Indian Country.
The Fanbase: Deadline, which broke the news of the series development, says it’s “described as a true crime show, a family drama and an immersive look at modern Native American life.” According to the article, it follows a woman who was recently released from jail and returns to her life on a North Dakota reservation — where she becomes an amateur sleuth and “ultimately expos[es] a sweeping criminal conspiracy of murder and corruption.”
Everything We Know So Far: Reservation Dogs co-creator Sterlin Harjo and writer-director Erica Tremblay would co-create and executive produce the potential series. Other executive producers include Beau Willimon and Jordan Tappis’ Westward Productions and Michael London’s Groundswell Productions. Lissa Yellowbird, who is the subject of the book, is also on executive producer.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: There’s a lot of never-underestimate-the-underdog energy to this story that could definitely make it a hit. And Harjo’s Reservation Dogs was extremely well received.


The Young Team

Network: TBD
Based On: Graeme Armstrong’s 2020 novel.
The Fanbase: People who know (or need to know) that Scotland is about more than what they see on Outlander.
Everything We Know So Far: According to Variety, Synchronicity Films has optioned the rights to the story. It’s about teen gang members in Scotland’s former industrial heartland of Airdrie, North Lanarkshire.
Chances It Will Be a Certified Fresh Hit: It could be the gritty, honest look at institutional failures and teen (boys) with no other way out a la HBO’s The Wire.


*Full disclosure: The writer of this article is married to Woo (Three-Body Problem). They have two cute children and an extremely photogenic cat.

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This Week’s special Comic-Con Ketchup brings you a recap of some of the reveals and announcements from this weekend’s Comic-Con@Home 2021, including new and returning shows like Blade Runner: Black Lotus, Star Trek: Prodigy, The Walking Dead final season, and The Wheel of Time.


FRIDAY – 10 A.M. – A CLOSER LOOK AT ANIMATED STAR TREKS: PRODIGY AND LOWER DECKS


With both Marvel and DC passing on Comic-Con@Home this year, one immediately obvious question was whether other film studios would step up to fill their vacancy, or if the event would be dominated by television. That question was quickly answered just by looking at Friday morning’s TV and streaming–heavy schedule, and the event kept the same momentum the whole way through.

Paramount+ got things started Friday morning with its “Peak Animation” panel focused on four shows, half of which from their Star Trek franchise. Kate Mulgrew will reprise her Captain Janeway character from Star Trek: Voyager in Star Trek: Prodigy, which was one of the four trailers. The comedy series Star Trek: Lower Decks, which received its season 1 reveal at last year’s event showed off its season 2 trailer this year including the return of Jonathan Frakes as William Riker.

Stephen Colbert Presents Tooning Out the News was also teased with its satirical “special coverage” of this year’s Comic-Con@Home itself.

The final new show revealed and which had a trailer debut was The Harper House, featuring cast members like Rhea Seahorn (Better Call Saul), Jason Lee (My Name Is Earl), and Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black), star of the 2022 Marvel-Disney+ series She-Hulk.


FRIDAY – 11 A.M. – POSTER AND RELEASE DATE FOR AMAZON’S AMBITIOUS WHEEL OF TIME SERIES

The Wheel of Time season 1 poster

(Photo by Amazon Prime Video)

Click image to open full poster in a new tab.

Amazon Prime had a few different projects to show off at their panel (including their series adaptation of I Know What You Did Last Summer, but the one that probably had the most fan anticipation was probably their adaptation of Robert Jordan’s fantasy series The Wheel of Time. Though Amazon has previously released two short teasers (“Moiraine” and “Lan“), they didn’t show us a trailer, but Amazon’s Comic-Con@Home panel did reveal the first poster, that came with the promise of a premiere date sometime in November 2021.


FRIDAY – 3 P.M. – CHECK OUT THE NOT-SO-SPOOKY BLOOPER REEL FROM THE FEAR STREET TRILOGY

Netflix by all accounts has found success through their decision to pick up the Fear Street trilogy — which are all Certified Fresh at 84% and up — from 20th Century Studios after that company decided to hold back their original plans for a 2020 release because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The movies are obviously intended to be scary, but the blooper reel fans got to see during the “Netflix Geeked: Fear Street Trilogy” panel … not so much.


FRIDAY – 3 P.M. – BATMAN: THE LONG HALLOWEEN, PART TWO TO FEATURE SOME CHANGES FROM COMIC

The problem with adapting any sort of mystery book to movies or TV is that anyone who’s read the book then might already know how everything will be revolved in the screen version. That’s especially true if the source material came out some 25 years ago as the original Batman: The Long Halloween comics did. The story is pretty massive (stretched across an entire year of various holidays), so the animated adaptation was split into two movies. Part One came out last month, and Part Two, premiering on Tuesday, July 27, was discussed at a panel this week, including the not-surprising revelations that some elements were changed from the comics.


FRIDAY – 5 P.M. – CYBERPUNK CLASSIC LIVES ON AS BLADE RUNNER: BLACK LOTUS


HBO Plus neighbors Adult Swim and Crunchyroll are teaming up for a 13-episode Blade Runner spinoff series called Blade Runner: Black Lotus, and the first trailer premiered at its Comic-Con@Home panel this week. Jessica Henwick (Iron Fist, Game of Thrones) voices a replicant named Elle whose goals are, of course, shrouded in mystery.


SATURDAY – 1 P.M. – THE SIMPSONS STILL CHUGGING ALONG INTO SEASON 33


The Simpsons has been on the air longer than many of its current fans have even been alive, which we’re guessing just on the math that there have be fans who are under 33. Not only is The Simpsons indeed coming back for its 33rd season, but the premiere episode will be a musical that was described in the panel as “like a Broadway musical of an episode with wall to wall music,” with Kristen Bell (Frozen) providing Marge Simpson’s singing voice. This year’s “Treehouse of Terror” episode will also be an expanded one that, based on its length (five stories instead of three) sounds like it might be an hour-long special.


SATURDAY – 1 P.M. AND 3 P.M. – ALL THINGS THE WALKING DEAD

AMC had so much to reveal about three different Walking Dead panels that they spread it out around two Comic-Con@Home panels. Let’s start off with the original show (watch the panel), which will finally come to its conclusion with season 11, which will get its start on AMC+ on August 15, 2021. The first spinoff series Fear the Walking Dead (watch the panel) also is coming back soon for its seventh season, which will premiere on October 17, 2021. Finally, there is also The Walking Dead: World Beyond (watch the panel), which will debut its second and final season on October 3, 2021.


SATURDAY – 5 P.M. – LUCIFER TO COME TO ITS HELLISH END IN SEPTEMBER


Netflix is now well into production on its long-in-development adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman, and at the same time, Netflix is also preparing to wrap up another Gaiman adaptation series, Lucifer. At the show’s panel this weekend, Netflix revealed that the sixth and final season will premiere on September 10, 2021.


SUNDAY – 10 A.M. – THIRTEENTH DOCTOR RETURNS FOR DOCTOR WHO SEASON 13


Your favorite show may have been a long time (The Simpsons, hold our beer), but pretty much no one beats the nearly 60-year legacy of Doctor Who (watch the panel) — just never mind that gap before the reboot or that the new season is called the thirteenth. That number 13 comes into play twice with this week’s teaser trailer, as Jodie Whittaker’s incarnation is the 13th form of The Doctor. Especially watch out for the new supporting character played by Jacob Anderson (Grey Worm from Game of Thrones).


SUNDAY – 11 A.M. – GEORGE A. ROMERO’S DAY OF THE DEAD TO LIVE ON AS SYFY SERIES


Some 50-plus years after Night of the Living Dead, the zombie genre that George A. Romero reinvented is still very much still undead, and that’s even after all three films of his original trilogy have been remade at least once, including Dawn of the Dead in 2004 and Day of the Dead in 2008, both featuring Ving Rhames. SYFY is skipping over the mall-set Dawn of the Dead and jumping straight to the military bunker setting of Day of the Dead with their new series (watch the panel), which is expected to premiere sometime in October before Halloween.


SUNDAY – NOON – DC’S LEGENDS OF TOMORROW SEVENTH SEASON TRAILER


Warner Bros and DC Comics are now focusing many of their new series projects on the HBO Max streaming service, but most of the shows on The CW continue to chug along. That includes the comedic time traveling adventure DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, which is set to return for its seventh season on August 8, 2021. The show’s Comic-Con@Home panel revealed several new details about the next season, including the first trailer ( https://collider.com/legends-of-tomorrow-season-6-comic-con-trailer-clue-episode/).


SUNDAY – 1 P.M. – DEXTER TO BE REVIVED AS DEXTER: NEW BLOOD


The Showtime drama Dexter, starring Michael C. Hall as the titular serial killer–vigilante, came to its original end in 2013, after earning four Emmy Awards (out of 24 nominations). Hall returns as Dexter Morgan in Dexter: New Blood, which will be set 10 years after his disappearance, with Dexter living quietly in rural New York under a new identity. Dexter: New Blood premieres on Showtime on November 7, 2021.


SUNDAY – 2 P.M. – ARMY OF THE DEAD PREQUEL ARMY OF THIEVES TRAILER

A year ago, all of the buzz around director Zack Snyder went towards the demand for his Zack Snyder’s Justice League to finally be released, but following the March release of the original director’s cut, the focus has since switched to his zombie movie Army of the Dead, and the growing franchise around it. The next entry we will see is a prequel film called Army of Thieves (directed by its star Matthias Schweighöfer), and we got our first trailer during its Comic-Con@Home panel.


SUNDAY 4 P.M. – CHILD’S PLAY SPINOFF CHUCKY SERIES


Although the original 1988 horror movie Child’s Play was produced for just $9 million, it was such a success that the “Chucky” franchise (watch the panel) went on to have a total of eight feature films (and counting), as well as an upcoming SYFY spinoff series. SYFY and USA Network revealed the first Chucky trailer this week, which included the series’ premiere date announcement: October 12, 2021.


SUNDAY – 5 P.M. – DELAYED BOB’S BURGERS MOVIE STILL COMING


A number of movies finally being released in 2021 were originally scheduled for release in 2020, but were delayed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Having said that, there are also movies that were originally scheduled for last year that had their release dates delayed, and which have not yet been rescheduled. One such title is the Bob’s Burgers movie (based on the FOX animated TV series), which was first announced in 2017 as being scheduled for July 17, 2020. At one of the last panels of Comic-Con@Home, the showrunners confirmed that the movie is still indeed planned for a theatrical release, but that, “we’re not really in a hurry to be in theaters until it’s really come back.” Obviously, none of us know for sure when that will be.


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San Diego Comic-Con is virtual for the second year in a row. The annual event will return in person to San Diego soon, but until then, you can watch the panels and see all the new TV and movie trailers released online. Rotten Tomatoes is compiling all the new trailers from Comic-Con@Home 2021 right here. Check back from July 23-25 for the biggest trailers dropping this weekend.

Movies | TV


Movie Trailers


Army of Thieves Trailer

The first prequel to Army of the Dead centers on Matthias Schweighofer’s safe cracker character, Dieter, on a previous heist. The zombie outbreak has already begun but this is before Dieter came to the U.S., let alone to Las Vegas. Schweighofer also directed.

Coming soon to Netflix


Horror Noire Trailer

Shudder introduced its anthology film Horror Noire at Comic-Con. The follow-up to the documentary Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror features six shorts by six different filmmakers.

Coming October to Shudder



Amazon shared the trailer for the fourth and final Evangelion movie. It featured opening titles in Japanese against red tinted stills, and characters trudging across a red tinted wasteland. Thrice Upon a Lifetime promises to conclude the story of Evangelion and the Angels.

Coming August 13 to Amazon Prime.


Movies | TV


TV Trailers


Day of the Dead Trailer

Syfy’s new Zombie series promises to pay homage to George A. Romero himself. Day of the Dead shows the day zombies climb out of their grave, and in one case eat a wedding party. Day was the third film in Romero’s movie trilogy. The movie was set in a military base but Syfy’s series is decidedly above ground, just like the undead.

 Coming  in October to Syfy


Chucky Trailer

Jake (Zackary Arthur) finds a Good Guy doll at a yard sale. Turns out he gets the Chucky doll, and Chucky starts up his murder spree at Jake’s high school.

 Coming Oct. 12 to Syfy and USA



After a series of teasers, Showtime released a substantial trailer for their Dexter revival after their panel. Dexter (Michael C. Hall) is in therapy, but struggles to resist his urges while handling knives and guns. Also get a peak at some of the locals among whom Dexter now tries to blend in, with his new identity. Showtime also announced the revival will premiere Nov. 7.

 Coming Nov. 7 on Showtime.



Coming up on DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, Ava (Jes Macallan) and Sara (Caity Lotz)’s wedding gets interrupted by aliens who force the Legends to bowl for their lives. Meanwhile, John Constantine (Matt Ryan) gets dangerously deep into his magic, but don’t worry. Ryan will be back in Season 7 as a new character, Dr. Gwyn Davies.

 Coming Sundays on The CW.



Jodie Whittaker returns as the Doctor in season 13 of Doctor Who. Plus, new character Vinder, played by Jacob Anderson, will make his debut in the new season, joining Whittaker, Mandip Gill, and John Bishop.

Coming later in 2021 to BBC America.



Netflix announced the premiere date for the final season of Lucifer at Comic-Con. The announcement video features very little dialogue, but lots of actions and wings. Lucifer (Tom Ellis)’s only line in the teaser confirms he’s leaving L.A.

Coming Sept. 10 to Netflix.



The action-packed trailer for The Walking Dead’s final season shows every character in battle with a walker at some point. If this is only the beginning of the end, the actual end is going to be epic!

Coming Aug. 15 to AMC+ and Aug. 22 on AMC.



In the trailer for the new season of Walking Dead: World Beyond, Iris (Aliyah Royale) and Felix (Nico Tortorella) get some disappointing news about the city of Omaha from Will (Jelani Aladdin). This is after Will escaped zombies and government agents.

Coming Oct. 3 on AMC.



In the second of two extended scenes from the upcoming seventh season of Fear the Waking Dead, June (Jenna Elfman) and John Sr. (Keith Carradine) are holed up in a different house. An earthquake opens a hole in the wall through which they discover a murder room.

Coming Oct. 17 on AMC.



In the first of two extended scenes from the upcoming seventh season of Fear the Waking Dead, the camera dives down a bunker where Morgan (Lennie James) and Grace (Karen David) must care for a crying baby. On the surface, a masked survivor checks levels while a trapped zombie struggles on the ground.

Coming Oct. 17 on AMC.



The trailer for AMC’s animated series Ultra City Smiths shows the seedy side of Ultra City. Det. David Mills sings and dances to keep his demons at bay as he tries to solve the mystery of the mayor’s disappearance.

Thursdays on AMC+.


Blade Runner: Black Lotus Trailer

Set in 2032 Los Angeles, Black Lotus finds herself able to fend off a group of attackers with martial arts skills. As she investigates her powers, she must use her skills more to defend herself against those who don’t want her to uncover the truth. The animation reproduces the movies’ futuristic cities with flying vehicles and tons of smoke.

Coming this fall to Adult Swim and Crunchyroll.



Shudder released the trailer for its original series Slasher: Flesh and Blood. David Cronenberg stars as the patriarch of a wealthy family who invites his family to their secluded island home for a deadly game. The prize is his fortune.

Coming Aug 12 to Shudder.



Leverage: Redemption premiered its first eight episodes July 9, so IMDB TV premiered a trailer for the fall portion of episodes. LeVar Burton guest stars as Mr. Blanche, whom Elliot (Christian Kane) and Breanna (Aleyse Shannon) spy on in a library. Breanna gets distracted by the retro tech in the library. Parker (Beth Riesgraf), Sophie (Gina Bellman), and Harry (Noah Wyle) analyze Mr. Blanche’s reading habits to devise the perfect con for him.

Coming this fall to IMDB TV.


S.O.Z.: Soldiers or Zombies Trailer

In the Mexican zombie series, an experiment to turn soldiers into zombies goes wrong and spreads the zombie outbreak south of the border. Eat your heart out, Walking Dead, literally.

Coming August 6 to Amazon Prime.



Stephen Amell is back in the world of costumed characters, but this time as a professional wrestler. Starz presented an inside look at the set for Heels and cast members Amell, Alexander Ludwig, Kelli Berglund, Allison Luff, James Harrison, Allen Maldonado, Chris Bauer, Mary McCormack, and more discussed their training and learning how to superplex.

Coming August 15 to Starz.



Paramount+’s “Animation Block” Comic-Con@Home panel introduced the trailer for season 2 of adult animated comedy Star Trek: Lower Decks.

Coming August 12 to Paramount+.



Paramount+’s Star Trek universe continues to expand its animated offerings. Star Trek: Prodigy is a CGI animated series about a group of aliens who escape captivity aboard the Enterprise. The teaser trailer gives you a glimpse at some of these new characters who team up for a better life. Kate Mulgrew reprises her Voyager role as Captain Janeway in hologram form.

Coming this fall to Paramount+.



Paramount+’s new animated series The Harper House features the voices of Better Call Saul‘s Rhea Seehorn, Jason Lee, Tatiana Maslany and Ryan Flynn. The Harpers move to a run down house in Arkansas with more than one dead body. The grown-up show features sex jokes and profanity, bleeped in the trailer. Gabourey Sidibe, Gary Anthony Williams, Nyima Funk, VyVy Nguyen and Lance Krall also star.

Coming September 16 to Paramount+.



Paramount+’s presented a special clip of Stephen Colbert Presents Tooning Out the News. The Comic-Con report mocked Paramount+’s own Star Trek spinoffs and the premise of cosplaying from home.

Thursdays on Paramount+.


Back to: MoviesTV

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Cinderella stars Camila Cabello

(Photo by Amazon Prime Video)

Put your glass slippers on and get ready to dance — the story of Cinderella has been updated for Amazon and will premiere in September. Apple TV+’s Isaac Asimov adaptation Foundation has also gotten a September premiere date and a new trailer. The Trinity Killer will return to Dexter for the show’s fall revival and more of this week’s biggest news in TV and streaming.


TOP STORY

Camila Cabello Croons in Cannon’s Cinderella

The prince’s ball has been set for September 3 and we’ve all been cordially invited. That’s the date that Amazon Prime Video will release Cinderella, a film that offers a musical romantic comedy take on the classic Charles Perrault story of the orphaned girl who cleans up real good but isn’t great about keeping track of her footwear.

Singer Camila Cabello stars in this production, which uses modern pop songs for a tongue-in-cheek soundtrack.

Watch the first trailer for Cinderella, which stars Fifth Harmony alum Cabello and is written and directed by Pitch Perfect and BlockersKay Cannon. Emmy winner Billy Porter also stars as Fab G, who is described as a “genderless fairy godparent” while Broadway legend Idina Menzel will play Cinderella’s (heh … wicked?) stepmother.

Other cast members include Pierce Brosnan and Minnie Driver as the king and queen, Maddie Baillio and Charlotte Spencer as Cinderella’s stepsisters, Missy Elliott as the town crier and comedians John Mulaney, James Corden and Romesh Ranganathan as footmen. The Craft: Legacy’s Nicholas Galitzine will play the prince.


Killer Casting News: John Lithgow Returns for Dexter

DEXTER, John Lithgow

(Photo by Randy Tepper / © Showtime / Courtesy Everett Collection)

It’s hard to truly stay dead on a TV show. In fact, favorite Dexter Big Bad Arthur “Trinity” Mitchell will be back for Showtime’s limited series continuation of the Michael C. Hall series. Although the murderous Trinity — who was played by Emmy winner John Lithgow — was killed in the first iteration of the series, Deadline reports that he’ll make “a short but decisive appearance” in the new episodes. The new take on Dexter premieres this fall.

Trinity isn’t the only serial killer getting the TV treatment. Antonio Banderas will star in a six-hour limited series based on the true-crime best-seller, The Monster of Florence: A True Story. Although no network or streaming service is attached yet, Studiocanal is producing with Denmark’s Nikolaj Arcel directing from scripts written by Arcel and Anders Thomas Jensen. (Variety)

Hello! HBO Max’s Julia Child limited series biopic has cast another famous name: Judith Light will play the chef and author’s publisher, Blanche Knopf. Previously announced cast members include David Hyde Pierce and Sarah Lancaster, who replaced Joan Cusack in the lead role. (Deadline)

The Americans and Homeland’s Costa Ronin will star in an unnamed bank heist pilot for NBC. Written by Nick Wootton and directed by Justin Lin, it also stars Ryan Michelle Bathé and Morena Baccarin (also of Homeland fame). (Deadline)

Nadine Ellis replaces LeToya Luckett in Fox’s upcoming drama, Our Kind of People. Yaya DaCosta, Morris Chestnut and Joe Morton also star in the series created by Karin Gist and executive producer Lee Daniels and that’s set in what is described as the “aspirational world of Oak Bluffs on Martha’s Vineyard, a historical stronghold where the rich and powerful Black elite have come to play for more than 50 years.” (Deadline)

The Weeknd will star in, and co-write the HBO series The Idol, which “centers on an romance between a female pop singer and an enigmatic club owner who runs a cult.” (The Wrap)

Allison Tolman, J.C. MacKenzie, Chris Bauer, Hamish Linklater and Chris Messina join Julia Roberts and Sean Penn in Starz’s Watergate limited series Gaslit.

Gilmore Girls and Bunheads alum Kelly Bishop joins the fourth season of Amy Sherman-Palladino’s Amazon series, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel in a guest-starring role.

Harry Connick Jr. will play adoptive father Daddy Warbucks in NBC’s Annie Live!, which airs in December. It was previously announced that Taraji P. Henson would play ruthless orphanage manager Miss Hannigan.

Chandler Kinney and Maia Reficco will star in the new version of Pretty Little Liars that’s coming to HBO Max. Set two decades after a series of tragic events almost ripped the blue-collar town of Millwood apart, PLL: Original Sin focuses on a new set of teens who find themselves tormented by an unknown “A”ssailant and made to pay for the secret sin their parents committed. Kinney will play Tabby, an aspiring director and horror movie buff who harbors a secret. Reficco will play Not, a striving and sardonic track star who’s working hard to get her life back to normal after a summer spent in juvenile detention.


Development News: Noah Hawley Says Alien TV Series “Not a Ripley Story”

ALIEN, Sigourney Weaver, 1979

(Photo by 20th Century Fox Film Corp.)

In December, it was announced that Fargo and Legion’s Noah Hawley would be creating a story set in Ridley Scott’s Alien universe for FX. This week, in an interview with Vanity Fair, Hawley elaborates to say that the show will not be associated with Sigourney Weaver’s infamous heroine, warrant officer Ellen Ripley. “It’s not a Ripley story,” Hawley told the outlet. “She’s one of the great characters of all time, and I think the story has been told pretty perfectly, and I don’t want to mess with it. It’s a story that’s set on Earth also. The alien stories are always trapped… Trapped in a prison, trapped in a space ship. I thought it would be interesting to open it up a little bit so that the stakes of ‘What happens if you can’t contain it?’ are more immediate.”

TNT is developing a drama based on the Liam Neeson thriller Unknown. Although that film followed a doctor who lost his memory after a car accident and woke up to find his identity taken and the target of mysterious assassins, the series would follow a new lead character. Sean Finegan is writing the pilot and executive produce while Karl Gajdusek and Speed Weed will serve as showrunners and executive produce. Casting details are still … unknown.

13 Reasons Why’s Brian Yorkey is working with Vanessa Gazy and Quinton Peeples on the psychological thriller Echoes for Netflix. The seven-episode limited series follows now-adult twin sisters who have routinely secretly swapped lives. Now they each have double lives: husbands, homes, kids … (The Hollywood Reporter)

Apple has partnered with Gossip Girl team Josh Schwartz and Stephanie Savage on drama series City on Fire. Inspired by the Garth Risk Hallberg novel, it follows what secrets come out after a college student is mysteriously shot in New York’s Central Park.

Discovery+ is developing a spinoff of its hit, Gold Rush. (The Hollywood Reporter)


Trailers: Foundation, The Walking Dead, Loki, and More


Apple TV+’s new sci-fi series Foundation will premiere September 24. The series, which is executive produced by David S. Goyer and stars Jared Harris and Lee Pace, also has released a new trailer.

Loki mid-season trailer (Disney+)
The Walking Dead season 11 trailer (AMC)
Arcane season 1 teaser (Netflix)
Shark Beach with Chris Hemsworth Rotten Tomatoes exclusive sneak peek (Discovery)
First Wives Club season 2 teaser (BET+)
The Chair season 1 sneak peek (Netflix)
Awkwafina is Nora From Queens season 2 teaser (Comedy Central)
The Beast Must Die limited series featurette (AMC)
Grown-ish season 4 trailer (Freeform)
Fantasy Island season 1 teaser (Fox)
This Way Up season 2 teaser (Hulu)
Dave season 2, episode 4 trailer (FX)

Visit Rotten Tomatoes TV on YouTube for the latest trailers.


Loki Women Looking Out for Each Other

Sophia Di Martino, who plays variant Sylvie on Disney+’s Loki, is also a working mom to a nursing child. Luckily, her costume designer, Christine Wada, and her team knew just how to allow the star to be both at once: Wada designed Sylvie’s sleek black costume to have concealed zippers that would allow Di Martino to pump and nurse while on set. The actress tweeted a photo of appreciation.


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Dexter fans got a first look at Michael C. Hall as the returning serial killer this week. HBO Max conjures up a new pricing tier that doesn’t include the big theatrical premieres of the summer, but does include ads. Updates on the John Wick, Saw, and American Psycho TV series, and more of the week’s biggest news in TV and streaming.


TOP STORY

Showtime Releases New Teaser for Returning Series Dexter

Dexter fans got their first look at America’s favorite revived serial killer in a teaser video for the series’ return released by Showtime. Michael C. Hall revisits his famous role for a new season set for fall. The series ran for eight seasons, concluding in 2013 with a much-maligned final season (it has a 33% score on the Tomatometer, compared to the show’s Certified Fresh 96% first season). Many see this revival as a chance at redemption for the character and the series, which also starred Jennifer Carpenter, C.S. Lee, David Zayas, James Remar, Luna Lauren Velez, Desmond Harrington, and Julie Benz.


HBO Max’s New Ad-Supported Version Will Offer TV Shows and Movies – Except for Those Same-Day Theatrical Releases – For $9.99/Month

The Suicide Squad

(Photo by Jessica Miglio/©Warner Bros. Entertainment)

The good news: if that $14.99 per month fee has stopped you from signing up for HBO Max and all The Sopranos and Big Bang Theory episodes your heart desires, the streaming service’s new, ad-supported option, which will cost $9.99 when it launches in June, may make for a more classic TV-packed summer. Even better: though the ads will be sprinkled through the HBO Max specific programming, the service isn’t going to add them to programming that originated on HBO, i.e. Game of Thrones, Sex and the City, The Wire, etc.

Now to temper your excitement a bit: that cheaper, ad-supported option of an HBO Max subscription will not include the streamer’s same-day release of theatrical movies. Meaning, when The Suicide Squad hits theaters and $14.99 ad-free HBO Max on August 6, the $9.99/month subscribers will be seeing … well, not The Suicide Squad. Not on that day, anyway.

WarnerMedia hasn’t announced specifics of how long subscribers to the ad-supported version of HBO Max will have to wait to see new theatrical releases on the service, but in the meantime, you’ll have all those episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm and Rick and Morty to keep you entertained.


Lionsgate TV Boss Talks Upcoming John Wick, Saw, and American Psycho TV Entries

John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum

(Photo by Lionsgate)

Lionsgate Television chairman Kevin Beggs, in an interview with Deadline, talked about the company’s future plans, which includes the John Wick spin-off series The Continental at Starz, which will be a prequel about how the hotel for assassins came to be.

He describes the first season as unfolding like three 90-minute events, sort of like a limited series. Ian McShane, the movie’s Continental founder, Winston, won’t appear on screen, though McShane has suggested he might be doing voiceover for the series, which will revolve around a 1970s version of Winston. Keanu Reeves, Beggs says, may sign on as an executive producer of The Continental.

Meanwhile, Beggs also confirmed an American Psycho series is in development, and that there are conversations happening about the possibilities of a Saw TV series.


NEW TRAILERS: Jean Smart Is a Las Vegas Comedy Superstar in Hacks

Jean Smart stars Hacks as Deborah Vance, a legendary Las Vegas comedian whose manager pairs her with an entitled twentysomething comedy writer (Hannah Einbinder) when Vance’s place on the Strip is threatened by a plan to bring in younger-skewing audiences. Also stars Kaitlin Olson, Christopher McDonald, and Rose Abdoo. Premieres May 13. (HBO Max)

More trailers and teasers released this week:
• Power Book III: Raising Kanan is the second Power spin-off, this one a prequel unfolding the backstory of 50 Cent’s Kanan character. Stars Mekhi Curtis, Omar Epps, and Patina Miller. Premieres July 18. (Starz)
• Nine Perfect Strangers is a miniseries starring Nicole Kidman as the director of a wellness retreat that seems to be making its stress-relief seekers, well, more stressed. The drama is based on the book of the same name by Big Little Lies author Liane Moriarty, and also stars Melissa McCarthy, Michael Shannon, Samara Weaving, Regina Hall, Luke Evans, and Bobby Cannavale. Premieres later this year. (Hulu)
• Master of None season 3, subtitled Moments in Love, focuses on Denise (Lena Waithe) and her partner Alicia (Naomi Ackie), and the ups and downs of marriage and their struggles with fertility. Series creator Aziz Ansari directs. Premieres May 23. (Netflix)
• Domina is the eight-episode miniseries, filmed in Rome, that follows the extraordinary rise of Emperor Augustus Caesar’s third wife, Livia Drusilla (Kasia Smutniak), and all the exploits, affairs, and battles for political clout that surrounded the power couple who sat at the heart of the Roman Empire. Also stars Matthew McNulty, Tom Glynn-Carney, Claire Forlani, and Isabella Rossellini. Premieres June 6. (EPIX)


• Physical is the new 10-episode dramedy starring Rose Byrne as a quietly desperate 1980s housewife who finds empowerment in teaching aerobics. Premieres June 18. (Apple TV+)
• In Who Killed Sara? season 2, Alex is forced to learn the truth about his sister while making sure the buried corpse in his patio doesn’t send him back to prison. Stars Manolo Cardona and Carolina Miranda. Premieres May 19. (Netflix)
• Oslo is the Steven Spielberg–produced movie, based on the Tony-winning play, about the secret negotiations in the development of the 1990s Oslo Peace Accords between Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization. Stars Ruth Wilson and Andrew Scott. Premieres May 29. (HBO)
• Luca is the Disney and Pixar original film that showcases one incredible summer in the Italian seaside town of Portorosso, as seen through the eyes of a young sea monster named Luca. Voice cast includes Jacob Tremblay, Maya Rudolph, Jim Gaffigan, Sandy Martin, and Jack Dylan Grazer. Premieres June 18. (Disney+)
• From Cradle to Stage is the docuseries, from Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl and his mom Virginia, about the relationships between rock stars and their moms. Stars Grohl, Brandi Carlile, Miranda Lambert, Geddy Lee, Tom Morello, Dan Reynolds, and Pharrell Williams. Premieres May 6. (Paramount+)

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CASTING: Fantasy Island Reboot: Roselyn Sanchez Makes Wishes Come True as Ms. Roarke

Roselyn Sanchez

(Photo by JC Olivera/Getty Images)

Devious Maids star Roselyn Sanchez has been cast as the lead in Fox’s upcoming Fantasy Island reboot. She’ll play Elena Roarke, a relative of Mr. Roarke, the main character played by Ricardo Montalban in the original 1977-84 Fantasy Island series. The new series, which also takes place at a luxury resort where any fantasy can be fulfilled – even though the results often turn out much differently than the wish seekers planned – will premiere on Fox on August 10.

Run and Star Wars actor Domhnall Gleeson has joined the cast of The White House Plumbers, HBO’s limited series about how Richard Nixon’s closest advisors were largely responsible for his Watergate downfall. Gleeson will play John Dean, Nixon’s young White House Counsel who plotted the illegal cover-up of the break-in that destroyed Nixon. Woody Harrelson and Justin Theroux are starring and executive producing, with Harrelson as E. Howard Hunt and Theroux as G. Gordon Liddy, the Nixon administration members who plotted the Watergate burglaries. (Deadline)

The Unicorn stars Walt Goggins and Omar Miller are among the new cast members of The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey, the Apple TV+ series starring Samuel L. Jackson as the titular 91-year-old who regains his memory just long enough to solve the mystery of his nephew’s death and right some wrongs from his past. Based on Walter Mosley’s novel of the same name, the series also stars Marsha Stephanie Blake (When They See Us), Damon Gupton (Bates Motel), Cynthia Kaye McWilliams (Real Husbands of Hollywood), and Dominique Fishback (The Hateful Eight). (Variety)

IMDB TV, Amazon’s free streaming service, has ordered the new comedy Sprung, starring Garret Dillahunt as a recently released convict who bands together with fellow former convicts to redeem himself by righting some wrongs committed during the pandemic. The comedy will also star Illeana Douglas and Phillip Garcia.

Josh Hartnett will star in the Sky TV miniseries The Fear Index, based on the bestselling novel of the same name by Robert Harris, about a computer scientist whose AI system seems sure to make him wealthy by exploiting fear in the financial markets. Instead, he comes to fear for his life when he’s attacked at his home and comes to believe he’s being framed for a series of troubling occurrences. The four-part series is being produced by Left Bank Pictures, the production company behind The Crown.

Jamie McShane (Mank) and All Rise star Reggie Lee have been cast in Netflix’s TV adaptation of the Matthew McConaughey movie The Lincoln Lawyer, from producer David E. Kelley. McShane will play a cop with a contentious relationship with titular attorney Mickey Haller (Manuel Garcia-Rulfo), while Lee will play the owner of a chain of nursing homes who is under investigation for illegal activity. (Deadline)


John Mayer

(Photo by Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)

Grammy winner John Mayer is in final talks to host Later With John Mayer, a Paramount+ late-night series in which he would perform with and interview musicians and other celebrities, in a setting designed to look like a nightclub. (Variety)

Mad Men alum Vincent Kartheiser is joining the third season of HBO Max’s Titans, where he’ll play Scarecrow/Jonathan Crane, who’s locked up at Arkham Asylum wreaking havoc on Gotham City’s citizenry.

Pulitzer winner Tracy Letts has joined the cast of HBO’s 1980s Los Angeles Lakers drama based on Jeff Pearlman’s book Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s. Letts will play former Lakers coach Jack McKinney, who first created the team’s signature fast-paced style of gameplay. (Deadline)

Grammy-nominated musician Redman (a.k.a. Reggie Noble) will be reunited with his fellow rap legend collaborator Method Man (a.k.a. Clifford Smith Jr.) on the second season of the Starz drama Power Book II: Ghost. Redman will guest star as Theo Rollins, the older brother of successful defense attorney Davis MacLean played by Method Man.

Michael Rapaport (Atypical) will star as shoe designer Steve Madden in an untitled series about Madden’s success, prison sentence after being involved with stock manipulation and securities fraud, and eventual comeback with his shoe company.  The series, which is not attached to a network or streaming service yet, will be based on Madden’s 2020 memoir The Cobbler: How I Disrupted An Industry, Fell From Grace & Came Back Stronger Than Ever, which details the story of how he started his shoe company with just $1,000. (Deadline)

Josh Gad and Isla Fisher will star in Peacock’s “genre-bending romantic comedy” Wolf Like Me, about a single dad and a woman with “a secret she can’t bring herself to share with anyone” who find love. Gad and Fisher are also executive producers on the quirky series.

Supermarket Sweep host Leslie Jones will host the 2021 MTV Movie & TV Awards. Former Saturday Night Live star Jones is nominated for a Best Comedic Performance for her work in Coming 2 America. The awards, live from Los Angeles, will air in a two-night event on May 16 and 17. Fans can vote for their favorites at MTV.com.

Sarah Silverman, Nicole Byer, and Sam Richardson have joined the cast of Kill the Orange-Faced Bear, an upcoming TBS animated comedy about a guy who plots revenge against the bear who killed his girlfriend. Silverman will voice Brenda, the bear who ate Hanks’s (Damon Wayans Jr.) girlfriend Stacy … for personal reasons. When Stacy’s friends mistook a can of spray paint for bear mace, they turned Brenda’s face orange, which could make her an easy target for Hank’s revenge plan. Byer voices Pauline, a pretty, stylish bear who uses her feminine wiles to seduce Brenda’s husband, while Richardson voices Steve, the charming, but idiotic bear with a dangerous habit of breaking into cars to steal snacks and beer.


PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT: Elizabeth Banks Will Voice Pebbles in a Flintstones Spinoff

Bedrock

(Photo by Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)

Elizabeth Banks’ Brownstone Productions and Fox are developing Bedrock, a primetime adult animation comedy that’s a reboot of the animated comedy classic The Flintstones. Banks will voice Pebbles Flintstone, who is two decades older than she was in the original 1969-66 series. Now her dad, Fred, is getting ready to retire, and Pebbles is ready to embark on her own career, as she and her loved ones get with the new times: from Stone Age to the Bronze Age.

Paul Schrader said he and Taxi Driver and Raging Bull collaborator Martin Scorsese are planning a three-year series about the origins of Christianity, that they want to do with a streaming service. “It’s based on the Apostles and on the Apocrypha. It’s called The Apostles and Apocrypha,” Schrader told The New Yorker. “Because people sort of know the New Testament, but nobody knows the Apocrypha. And back in the first century, there was no New Testament, there’s just these stories. And some were true, and some weren’t, and some were forgeries.”

Power executive producer 50 Cent and star La La Anthony are developing The Case of Cyntoia Brown, a potential Starz limited series about Cyntoia Brown Long, a sex trafficking victim as a minor who was convicted of the murder of someone who paid to have sex with her. She was sentenced to life in prison, but her sentence was commuted in 2019 after she earned college degrees and served as a mentor to at-risk children, and with support from Anthony, LeBron James, Rihanna, and Kim Kardashian.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk will host the Mother’s Day Weekend edition of Saturday Night Live on May 8, with Miley Cyrus as the musical guest. Some of the cast members are less than thrilled about working with Musk.

ABC has passed on the untitled comedy that was set to star Emmy winners Alec Baldwin and Kelsey Grammer, and Alec Mapa, after seeing the finished pilot. The series had a straight-to-series order, and the pilot was directed by James Burrows, and would follow the three men who were roommates in their twenties. Squabbling broke them apart, but present day, they’re reunited and want to help each other take one last shot at living the lives they’ve wished for. Deadline reports the series is now being shopped to other networks and streaming services.

Fox has given a series order for next season to The Big Leap, a show-within-a-show dramedy about a group of underdogs, with no dance training, who try to change their lives by participating in a reality dance show that builds to a live production of Swan Lake. The series, based on a British reality TV format, stars Scott Foley, Teri Polo, and Piper Perabo.

Season 4 of Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale will be paired with an aftershow, One Burning Question, that will follow each episode of the season. Journalist Stacey Wilson Hunt will host. (The Wrap)

Peacock has ordered the six-part cyber thriller series The Undeclared War from seven-time BAFTA winner Peter Kosminsky. Set in 2024 around the time of a British general election, the series follows a leading team of analysts in the national security branch who is secretly working to ward off a cyber-attack on the country’s electoral system. Oscar winner Mark Rylance and Simon Pegg will star.

Left/Right TV, the producers behind The New York Times Presents documentary Framing Britney Spears is working on a documentary that will revisit “Nipplegate,” the 2004 Super Bowl Halftime performance in which Janet Jackson was made to take the fall for the performance in which her nipple was briefly flashed on the screen during her duet with Justin Timberlake. It’s a safe bet the former boy bander isn’t going to come out looking so great after this one, either. (Page Six)

Gilmore Girls star Scott Patterson, who played Luke’s Diner owner Luke Danes on The WB/CW series, will watch the entire eight-season series for the first time, and recap the episodes on an iHeartRadio podcast called I Am All In. The show premieres on May 3. (People)


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Sure, it was a bummer that so many TV productions were delayed in 2020. But that just means 2021 is going to be filled with even more excellent television to distract you from whatever is happening in the real world. High-profile Marvel projects are finally premiering on Disney+ — including WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki, and more — and long-anticipated seasons are headed back to TV  — American Horror Story season 10, The Witcher season 2 (here’s hoping), and The Walking Dead bonus season 10 episodes and season 11, for example.


Related: The Most Anticipated Movies of 2021


Among the big 2021 TV offerings, there are new superheroes — Javicia Leslie’s debut in Batwoman, the latest Arrowverse addition Superman & Lois — some real-life heroes — Aretha Franklin, The Rock — space-based series, crime procedurals, and much, much more. Check out our list of the most anticipated TV premieres of 2021 — we’ll add new ones as new premiere dates are announced.

Be sure to bookmark this list of anticipated 2021 TV and streaming shows and let us know in the comments which 2021 shows you’re most excited about.


Jan-Mar | Apr-June | July-Sep | Oct-Dec | TBD



January


Starring: Ralph Macchio, William Zabka
Release Date: January 1

It’s the ultimate grudge match! Season 3 offers a three-way feud now that a new sensei lords over the Cobra Kai dojo.

Critics Consensus: By pairing its emotional punches with stronger humor, Cobra Kai’s third season finds itself in fine fighting form.



Starring: Hailee Steinfeld, Jane Krakowski, Anna Baryshnikov, Toby Huss, Adrian Enscoe
Release Date: January 8

Season 2 finds poet Emily Dickinson struggling to be published and pinning her hopes on newspaperman Sam Bowles (Finn Jones). Read more: “Dickinson and Hawkeye Star Hailee Steinfeld Relishes Playing Strong-Willed Characters Who ‘Use Their Voice’

Critics Consensus: With stronger writing and a never-better Hailee Steinfeld, Dickinson finds surer footing in its second season without losing any of its strange delights.



Starring: Matthew Goode, Teresa Palmer, Alex Kingston
Release Date: January 9

Witch Diana Bishop escapes to the past with vampire Matthew Clairmont to escape the fallout from their taboo relationship and solve the mysteries of their supernatural existence.

Critics Consensus: Grounded by Matthew Goode and Teresa Palmer’s infectious chemistry and a healthy dose of visual splendor, A Discovery of Witches’ sophomore season makes slipping eras look easy.



Starring: Nicholas Ralph, Samuel West, Callum Woodhouse, Anna Madeley, Rachel Shenton
Release Date: January 10

James Herriot’s books, based on his life as a rural veterinarian in 1930s Yorkshire, get the Masterpiece treatment in this seven-part series.

Critics Consensus: With a winsome cast, picturesque setting, and plenty of heart, All Creatures Great and Small is a gentle reminder that good drama can be as soothing as it is entertaining.



Starring: Ricky Whittle, Ian McShane, Emily Browning, Yetide Badaki, Bruce Langley
Release Date: January 10

Shadow Moon rejects his destiny, seeking a quiet life and guidance from the Orishas, the gods of his Black ancestors; meanwhile his dad Odin, the Norse All-Father, persists in pulling Shadow back into the war between gods.

Critics Consensus: Though it’s unlikely to bring anyone back into the fold, American Gods’ tighter focus and strong performances may be enough for fans still holding out hope for a solid finish.



Starring: Gil Carrillo, Frank Salerno
Release Date: January 13

The true story of California serial killer Richard Ramirez, who stalked Los Angeles in the 1980s. Gil Carrillo, then a detective in the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, and the legendary homicide investigator Frank Salerno take viewers step-by-step through the grisly crimes.



Starring: Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Kathryn Hahn, Teyonah Parris
Release Date: January 15

Avengers Wanda Maximoff and Vision kick off the MCU’s Phase 4 in a series set in idyllic sitcom environments, passing through several decades, and questioning reality.

Critics Consensus: Part loving homage to TV history, part off-kilter mystery, WandaVision is a wonderfully weird and strikingly bold step into the small screen for the MCU — and a perfect showcase for Elizabeth Olsen and Paul Bettany.



Starring: Lauren Ambrose, Toby Kebbell, Nell Tiger Free, Rupert Grint
Release Date: January 15

From M. Night Shyamalan, Servant’s second season finds Philadelphia couple Sean and Dorothy reeling from the disappearance of the baby they know as their son Jericho and his nanny Leanne, who is part of a cult. Read more: M. Night Shyamalan Teases Four-Season Blueprint for Servant.

Critics Consensus: Servant’s second season serves up a solid — if not always convincing — set of thrills with a better grasp on its dark humor.



Starring: Javicia Leslie, Camrus Johnson, Nicole Kang, Meagan Tandy
Release Date: January 17

Gotham City is getting a new Batwoman: down-to-earth Ryan Wilder stumbles upon the Batsuit, opening up a new destiny for the once-disadvantaged new hero.

Critics Consensus: Batwoman’s second season survives a soft reboot, maintaining the show’s excellence while giving Javicia Leslie plenty of room to spread her wings.



Starring: Jared Padalecki, Keegan Allen, Lindsey Morgan
Release Date: January 21

Texas Ranger Cordell Walker returns home to Austin after two years undercover. The widower must reconnect with his two children and make nice with his new partner, one of the first female Texas Rangers in history.



Starring: Hunter Schafer
Release Date: January 24

The special episode of the HBO hit drama series follows Jules over the Christmas holiday as she reflects on the year. Creator Sam Levinson directed the episode and co-wrote it with star Schafer, who also serves as an executive producer.



Starring: Daveed Diggs, Jennifer Connelly, Sean Bean, Lena Hall, Mickey Sumner, Alison Wright
Release Date: January 25

A new power struggle emerges in season 2, following the arrival of Mr. Wilford (Bean) and a new train in the season 1 finale. A dangerous rift opens, dividing the survivors between their loyalty to Snowpiercer and to Wilford. Meanwhile, Melanie investigates a new discovery that could change humanity’s fate.



Starring: Alan Tudyk, Sara Tomko, Corey Reynolds
Release Date: January 27

A shape-shifting alien crash-lands on Earth and assumes the identify of a doctor in the small town of Patience, Washington. As “Dr. Harry” tends to patients, questions arise about the death of the town’s previous doctor.


February


Starring: Queen Latifah, Chris Noth, Lorraine Toussaint
Release Date: February 7

In this reimagining of the classic series, Queen Latifah stars as Robyn McCall, an enigmatic woman with a mysterious background who uses her skills to defend those with nowhere else to turn.



Starring: Cress Williams, Christine Adams, Nafessa Williams, China Anne McClain
Release Date: February 8

Black Lightning season 3 keyart (The CW)

(Photo by The CW)

The CW’s superhero series sees Jefferson Pierce serve up the final season of Black Lightning’s justice. Based on the DC Comics series, the show holds a 94% Tomatometer score going into season 4.



Starring: Rebecca Breeds, Kal Penn, Nick Sandow
Release Date: February 11

FBI Agent Clarice Starling returns to the field in 1993, six months after the events of The Silence of the Lambs. “[Dr. Lecter] was just a part of the process that is triggering her to go back to the real demons that are in her life,” star Rebecca Breeds told Rotten Tomatoes about her character. Read more: “Clarice Star Rebecca Breeds: Series Is a Step in the Evolution of The Silence of the Lambs Heroine.”



Starring:
Release Date: February 16

From Nahnatchka Khan (Fresh Off the Boat) and action superstar Dwayne Johnson, the story of The Rock’s formative years unfolds in an 11-episode comedy series. Johnson will appear in each episode as the focus and inspiration of the series.



Starring: Joel Kinnaman, Michael Dorman, Sarah Jones, Jodi Balfour, Shantel VanSanten, Krys Marshall, Sonya Walger
Release Date: February 19

Season 1 of the alternate-history drama presented a world in which the USSR beat the U.S. to the moon. Season 2 picks up a decade later when Cold War tensions are at their peak, the U.S. and the Soviets race to control the moon’s resources, and NASA is militarized.



Starring: Tyler Hoechlin, Elizabeth Tulloch
Release Date: February 23

The world’s most famous superhero and most famous journalist together face their biggest challenge yet: being modern-day working parents.



Starring:
Norman Reedus, Melissa McBride, Josh McDermitt, Christian Serratos, Ross Marquand, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Lauren Cohan, Seth Gilliam
Release Date: February 28

The Walking Dead extended its 10th season by six episodes, which will hit in February and see the survivors rebuilding their lives post-Whisperers, while facing several existential crises over their community, their emotional well-being, and humanity overall.  The series will end with season 11, also expected later this year.


March


Starring: Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, Daniel Brühl
Release Date: March 19

Mackie and Stan reunite following the events of Avengers: Endgame as Sam Wilson/Falcon and Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier, respectively. The bickering superheroes team up in an adventure that takes them around the world, testing their abilities — and their patience. Brühl returns as villain Helmut Zemo.



Starring: Cynthia Erivo, Courtney B. Vance
Release Date: March TBD

Erivo stars in an exploration of Aretha Franklin’s musical genius and career. The series examines the gospel prodigy and outspoken civil rights champion’s impact and lasting influence on music and culture worldwide.



Starring: Iman Vellani
Release Date: Winter TBD

A new Marvel TV hero is on the horizon: Awkward 16-year-old Kamala Khan, a Pakistani-American growing up in Jersey City, is a great student, a gamer, fan-fiction scribe, and a massive fan of superheroes — Captain Marvel in particular. Her world changes dramatically when Kamala gets super powers like the heroes she loves.



April

Hemingway: Miniseries (PBS)
Starring: Jeff Daniels
Release Date: April 5

Award-winning filmmakers Ken Burns and Lynn Novick take on the life of literary icon Ernest Hemingway. The three-part, six-hour documentary series paints an intimate picture of Hemingway the writer and explores the writer’s limitations and biases as an artist and a man of his time.



Starring: Jessie Mei Li, Archie Renaux, Freddy Carter, Amita Suman, Kit Young, Ben Barnes
Release Date: April TBD

Based on Leigh Bardugo’s Grishaverse novels, the fantasy series is set in a war-torn world in which a young soldier attracts sinister forces when she reveals a magical power that might unite her world.


May


Starring: Tom Hiddleston, Owen Wilson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Sophia Di Martino, Wunmi Mosaku, Richard E. Grant
Release Date: May TBD

The God of Mischief steps out of his brother Thor’s shadow in a new MCU Phase 4 series that takes place after the events of Avengers: Endgame.


Summer TBD


Starring: Jeffrey Wright, Samuel L. Jackson, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Josh Brolin, Hayley Atwell, Chadwick Boseman, Jeremy Renner, Paul Rudd, Natalie Portman, Michael Douglas, Michael B. Jordan, Sebastian Stan, Michael Rooker, Tom Hiddleston
Release Date: Summer TBD

Marvel Studios’ first animated series What If… ? reimagines famous events from Marvel films in unexpected ways. The series features a voice cast made up of the MCU biggest stars reprising their roles.


Power Book III: Raising Kanan: Season 1 (Starz)
Starring: Mekai Curtis, Patina Miller, Omar Epps
Release Date: Summer TBD

From creator, showrunner, and executive producer Sascha Penn, the third installment in the Power franchise tells the story of the early years of Kanan Stark, portrayed by Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson in the original series.


The Nevers: Season 1 (HBO)
Starring: Laura Donnelly, Ann Skelly, Olivia Williams, James Norton, Tom Riley, Rochelle Neil, Eleanor Tomlinson, Amy Manson, Pip Torrens, Denis O’Hare, Zackary Momoh, Elizabeth Berrington, Kiran Sawar, Nick Frost, Ben Chaplin
Release Date: Summer TBD

Laura Donnelly in The Nevers (screencap)

(Photo by HBO)

Set in Victorian-era London, this 10-episode science-fiction drama series follows a gang of women who manifest unusual abilities, then face relentless enemies as they embark on a mission that could have world-changing repercussions. The series was originally helmed by Joss Whedon, who stepped down in November 2020 after filming wrapped. HBO subsequently issued a statement that the series would premiere in summer.



December

The Book of Boba Fett: Season 1 (Disney+)
Starring: Temuera Morrison, Ming-Na Wen
Release Date: December TBD

The Mandalorian season 2 Boba Fett poster

(Photo by © 2020 Lucasfilm Ltd. & ™. All Rights Reserved.)

As teased in a surprise end-credit sequence in the season finale of The Mandalorian, the legendary bounty hunter’s journey will continue in The Book of Boba Fett, created by Dave Filoni and Jon Favreau. Read more: “Everything We Know About The Book of Boba Fett.”



TBD


Starring: Michael C. Hall
Release Date: TBD

A 10-episode limited series reunites series star Michael C. Hall and showrunner Clyde Phillips to revive America’s favorite serial killer Dexter Morgan. The series is set to begin production in early 2021, with a tentative premiere date in the fall of 2021.


Star Wars: The Bad Batch: Season 1 (Disney+)
Starring:
TBD
Release Date: TBD

The Bad Batch is an elite squad of clones (first introduced in The Clone Wars) that vary genetically from their brothers in the Clone Army. Members each possess a singular exceptional skill that makes them extraordinary soldiers. Together the formidable crew take on mercenary missions in this animated series set in the post–Clone Wars era.



Starring: Jared Harris, Lee Pace
Release Date: TBD

The 10-episode series based on Isaac Asimov’s influential (think: Star Wars) science-fiction novel trilogy is from David Goyer, Josh Friedman, and Skydance Television and chronicles the epic saga of The Foundation, a band of exiles who discover that the only way to save the Galactic Empire from destruction is to defy it.


Girls5Eva: Season 1 (Peacock)
Starring: Sara Bareilles, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Paula Pell, Busy Philipps
Release Date: TBD

From Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt writer and co-executive producer Meredith Scardino, the series follows a ’90s one-hit-wonder girl group that reunites to give their dreams one more shot. Tina Fey serves as executive producer.



Starring: Henry Cavill, Anya Chalotra, Freya Allan, Joey Batey, MyAnna Buring
Release Date: TBD

Monster-hunter-for-hire Geralt of Rivia continues his journeys in season 2. Based on the book series by Andrzej Sapkowski, the series follows Geralt as he finds love, battles all forms of beast, and stumbles into relationships that together can loosely be called a family.


Vikings: Valhalla: Season 1 (Netflix)
Starring:
Bill Murphy, Yvonne Mai
Release Date: TBD

From The Fugitive writer Jeb Stuart, the new saga begins 100 years after the original series concludes and dramatizes the lives of famous Vikings including Harald Hardrada and Erik the Red. Vikings creator Michael Hirst serves as executive producer.



Starring: Jeremy Renner, Hailee Steinfeld, Vera Farmiga, Brian d’Arcy James
Release Date: TBD

In another installment of the MCU’s Phase 4, Renner reprises his role as Avenger Hawkeye to introduce another skilled Marvel Comics archer, Kate Bishop (Steinfeld).



Starring: Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Caleb McLaughlin, Finn Wolfhard, Gaten Matarazzo, Millie Bobby Brown, Noah Schnapp
Release Date: TBD

While David Harbour’s Hopper did not meet his end in the climactic battle of season 3, “It’s not all good news for our ‘American’; he is imprisoned far from home in the snowy wasteland of Kamchatka, where he will face dangers both human… and other,” creators the Duffer Brothers revealed in a press release announcing the start of season 4 filming. “Meanwhile, back in the States, a new horror is beginning to surface, something long buried, something that connects everything.” Read more: “Everything We Know about Stranger Things Season 4.”


Y: The Last Man: Season 1 (FX on Hulu)
Starring:
Diane Lane, Ashley Romans, Ben Schnetzer, Olivia Thirlby, Amber Tamblyn, Marin Ireland
Release Date: TBD

Based on DC Comics’ series of the same name, Y: The Last Man explores a world in which an apocalyptic event has wiped-out every mammal with a Y chromosome, except for one human male and his pet monkey.


Law & Order Organized Crime: Season 1 (NBC)
Starring:
Christopher Meloni
Release Date: TBD

Meloni reprises his Law & Order: SVU role as Elliot Stabler, who returns to the NYPD to lead a new task force following a major personal loss. After a decade away, he must adapt to a changed city, police department, and criminal justice system as he takes on powerful crime syndicates.



Starring: Thuso Mbedu, Chase W. Dillon, Joel Edgerton
Release Date: TBD

Based on Colson Whitehead’s 2017 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel for fiction of the same name, this series is helmed by Barry Jenkins and follows a young Georgia woman’s journey to freedom as she escapes on the very literal, very secret underground railroad.



Starring: Brian Cox, Jeremy Strong, Kieran Culkin, Sarah Snook, Matthew McFadyen, Nicholas Braun, Alan Ruck, Hiam Abbass
Release Date: TBD

Succession s2

(Photo by HBO)

Revisit the insanity of the dysfunctional Roy family dynasty after its 2020 Outstanding Drama Series Emmy win. The four grown children of media tycoon Logan Roy (Cox) return to undermine each other as they each grasp for control of their father’s legacy. But he’s not retired yet.



Starring: Beanie Feldstein, Sarah Paulson, Clive Owen
Release Date: TBD

The third installment of the award-winning true-crime anthology series from producer Ryan Murphy returns with the story of Bill Clinton’s impeachment.



Starring: Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, Leslie Grossman, Billie Lourd, Evan Peters, Adina Porter, Lily Rabe, Angelica Ross, Finn Wittrock, Macaulay Culkin
Release Date: TBD

The 10th season of Ryan Murphy’s FX horror anthology is expected to premiere in 2021. Us Weekly magazine reports that the season will be subtitled Pilgrim and is scheduled to start filming on February 1 in Provincetown, Massachusetts, with production concluding on March 6.


American Horror Stories, Season 1 (Hulu)
Starring: TBD
Release Date: TBD

Ryan Murphy’s Hulu horror film anthology is also expected this year, and frequent star of Murphy titles Sarah Paulson (ACSAHS, Ratched) revealed that she will direct an episode.



Starring: Donald Glover, Brian Tyree Henry, LaKeith Stanfield, Zazie Beetz
Release Date: TBD

Donald Glover in Atlanta

(Photo by Matthias Clamer/FX)

The third and fourth seasons of the award-winning comedy from the mind of Donald Glover are expected to film concurrently in 2021 as up-and-coming rapper Paper Boi achieves more success.



Starring: Matt Berry, Natasia Demetriou, Kayvan Novak, Harvey Guillen, Mark Proksch
Release Date: TBD

Harvey Guillen, Kayvan Novak, Mark Proksch, Natasia Demetriou, and Matt Berry in What We Do in the Shadows

(Photo by Russ Martin/©FX)

Created by Jemaine Clement, star of the 2014 film of the same name, the series takes place on Staten Island, where the lives of four vampire roommates are filmed documentary-style. Guest stars in this series — where literally anything can happen — have included Clement, Taika Waititi, and Jonathan Brugh, reprising their roles from the film, as well as Tilda Swinton, Evan Rachel Wood, Danny Trejo, Paul Rubens, Wesley Snipes, Craig Robinson, Mark Hamill, Lucy Punch, and more.



Starring: Pamela Adlon
Release Date: TBD

Pamela Adlon in Better Things

(Photo by Suzanne Tenner/FX)

The award-winning FX comedy series centers on a single mom and actress trying to raise her three daughters in Los Angeles.



Starring:
Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, Julia Garner
Release Date: TBD

Ozark

(Photo by Steve Dietl/Netflix ©2020)

Neck deep in a cartel money-laundering operation, financial advisor Marty Byrde (Bateman) and his wife Wendy (Linney) were actively involved in some shocking season 3 murders. The first half of the 14-episode fourth and final season is expected to premiere in 2021, with the second half expected to debut in 2022.


Reservation Dogs (FX)
Starring:
D’Pharaoh Woon-A-Tai, Devery Jacobs, Paulina Alexis, Lane Factor
Release Date: TBD

Cast of FX series Reservation Dogs

(Photo by Shane Brown/FX)

The half-hour comedy series from Sterlin Harjo and Taika Waititi, follows four Native teenagers in rural Oklahoma who both commit crime and fight it.


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Stranger Things - Barb (Netflix)

(Photo by Netflix)

44 Best Horror TV Series to Watch on Netflix

Updated: October 26, 2020

Looking for the perfect Halloween binge watch? Satisfy your blood craving with one of the many original Netflix horror series and more. The streaming service’s collection of horror-centric series includes teen vampires (The Vampire Diaries), campy zombie hunters (Ash vs. Evil Dead), genius anime detectives (Death Note), and some incredibly scary haunted houses (The Haunting of Hill House), haunted horror writers (French drama Marianne), haunted hearts (Chambers), and even haunted military interrogation centers (India’s Ghoul). Basically, there’s a lot of haunting.

Netflix also serves up multiple horror anthology series, including American Horror StoryTwo Sentence Horror Stories, Slasher, and Love, Death & Robots. If anthologies aren’t your thing, sit down for some supernatural-themed procedurals, like the multi-seasoned broadcast imports Lucifer, Supernatural, and iZombie.

The streaming service has also added plenty of foreign options, including French historical horror La Révolution and Mexican religious horror Diablero, although they didn’t make the list because we’re only including series that are ranked with Tomatometer scores. (That’s also why U.S. shows like Legacies and Van Helsing didn’t make it either.)

In the mood for some TV scares? Check out this list of 44 horror TV series on Netflix you can watch right now.

Ratched (2020)
62%

#44
Synopsis: A young nurse at a mental institution becomes jaded and bitter before turning into a full-fledged monster to her patients.... [More]

The Mist (2017)
60%

#43
Synopsis: Stephen King's 1980 novella "The Mist" -- adapted into a feature film by Frank Darabont in 2007 -- is re-imagined... [More]

Scream (2015)
61%

#42
Synopsis: MTV teams with super-producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein on a TV series adaptation of the hit horror film franchise. Instigated... [More]

Haven (2010)
63%

#41
Synopsis: FBI Agent Audrey Parker arrives in Haven, Maine, on what she believes is a routine assignment. But the longer she... [More]

Typewriter (2019)
67%

#40
Synopsis: A haunted house and a haunted book stir the imaginations of young wannabe ghost hunters.... [More]
Directed By: Sujoy Ghosh

Synopsis: Anthology series exploring primal and social fears.... [More]
Starring:

#38
Synopsis: Sarah Bennett's parents were murdered by a killer known as "The Executioner" 30 years ago. Now, she returns to the... [More]

Daybreak (2019)
70%

#37
Synopsis: Navigating a post-apocalyptic world full of zombies and "Mad Max"-style gangs, a teenage outcast searches for his lost love.... [More]

Dracula (2020)
71%

#36
Synopsis: The Count Dracula legend transforms with new tales that flesh out the vampire's gory crimes -- and bring his vulnerability... [More]
Directed By: Sue Vertue

Curon (2020)
71%

#35
Synopsis: ... [More]
Starring:

Dexter (2006)
71%

#34
Synopsis: Dexter Morgan is a Miami-based blood splatter expert who doesn't just solve murders; he commits them too. In fact, he's... [More]

Requiem (2018)
%

#33
Synopsis: Matilda Gray, an ambitious musician and talented cellist, has her life suddenly turned upside down when her mother commits suicide.... [More]
Directed By: Mahalia Belo

#32
Synopsis: "American Horror Story" was created by the co-creators of "Glee," but the shows have little in common besides that. The... [More]

#31
Synopsis: This collection of animated short stories spans several genres, including science fiction, fantasy, horror and comedy. World-class animation creators bring... [More]
Starring:

Black Summer (2019)
89%

#30
Synopsis: Set in the "Z Nation" universe, this series follows a crack team of special forces as it fights for hope... [More]
Directed By: Abram Cox

Glitch (2015)
80%

#29
Synopsis: A police officer in a small country town finds his life turned upside down when six former residents return from... [More]
Directed By: Tony Ayres

The Walking Dead (2010)
80%

#28
Synopsis: Based on the comic book series written by Robert Kirkman, this gritty drama portrays life in the months and years... [More]

The Twilight Zone (1959)
82%

#27
Synopsis: "The Twilight Zone" was the brainchild of Emmy Award-winner Rod Serling, who served as host and wrote over 80 episodes... [More]
Starring: Rod Serling

The Originals (2013)
84%

#26
Synopsis: Klaus, the original vampire/werewolf hybrid, returns to New Orleans -- which his family helped build -- to investigate rumors of... [More]

Synopsis: This adaptation of the "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" tale is a dark coming-of-age story that traffics in horror and the... [More]

The Vampire Diaries (2009)
86%

#24
Synopsis: This supernatural drama, based on the series of novels by L.J. Smith, details the lives of two brothers, Damon and... [More]

Lucifer (2016)
88%

#23
Synopsis: Based on characters created by Neil Gaiman, Sam Kieth and Mike Dringenberg, this series follows Lucifer, the original fallen angel,... [More]
Directed By: Nathan Hope

Ghoul (2018)
88%

#22
Synopsis: When a new prisoner arrives at a military detention center exhibiting eerie behavior, young interrogator Nida Rahim searches for the... [More]

#21
Synopsis: A young governess arrives at Bly Manor and begins to see apparitions haunting the estate.... [More]

Twin Peaks (1990)
82%

#20
Synopsis: A crime drama mixed with healthy doses of the surreal, this series is about FBI Agent Dale Cooper, who travels... [More]

Devilman Crybaby (2018)
89%

#19
Synopsis: Akira's best friend tells him that ancient demons have returned to take back the world from humans and suggests that... [More]

Santa Clarita Diet (2017)
89%

#18
Synopsis: Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant star in this Netflix-original series as married realtors, Sheila and Joel, who are living a... [More]

iZombie (2015)
92%

#17
Synopsis: When over-achieving medical resident Liv Moore attends a party that turns into a zombie feeding frenzy, she ends up joining... [More]

Penny Dreadful (2014)
91%

#16
Synopsis: Many people are familiar with classic literary characters like Dr. Frankenstein and Dorian Gray. "Penny Dreadful" brings those and other... [More]
Directed By: John Logan, Sam Mendes

Wynonna Earp (2016)
92%

#15
Synopsis: Wynonna Earp has been away from her hometown, Purgatory, for years but returns to reluctantly take on the role that... [More]

Dead Set (2008)
92%

#14
Synopsis: Inspired, says creator Charlie Brooker, by the classic horror film "Dawn of the Dead," this five-episode series chronicles a nightmare... [More]

Hannibal (2013)
92%

#13
Synopsis: Gifted criminal profiler Will Graham has a unique way of thinking that allows him to empathize with anyone, including psychopaths.... [More]

Marianne (2019)
94%

#12
Synopsis: A famous horror writer who is lured back to her hometown discovers that the evil spirit who plagues her dreams... [More]
Directed By: Samuel Bodin

Castlevania (2017)
94%

#11
Synopsis: Inspired by the popular video game series, this anime series is a dark medieval fantasy. It follows the last surviving... [More]

Synopsis: This modern reimagining of the Shirley Jackson novel follows siblings who, as children, grew up in what would go on... [More]

Bates Motel (2013)
93%

#9
Synopsis: After the death of her husband, Norma Bates buys a motel in the picturesque coastal town of White Pine Bay,... [More]

Supernatural (2005)
93%

#8
Synopsis: This haunting series follows the thrilling yet terrifying journeys of Sam and Dean Winchester, two brothers who face an increasingly... [More]

Stranger Things (2016)
91%

#7
Synopsis: Mysteries unravel in a small Midwestern town in the 1980s, involving supernatural forces, secret experiments and one strange girl.... [More]

Dark (2017)
95%

#6
Synopsis: When two children go missing in a small German town, its sinful past is exposed along with the double lives... [More]
Directed By: Baran bo Odar

Mindhunter (2017)
97%

#5
Synopsis: Catching a criminal often requires the authorities to get inside the villain's mind to figure out how he thinks. That's... [More]

Ash vs Evil Dead (2015)
99%

#4
Synopsis: Ash is baaaack! Bruce Campbell reprises his "Evil Dead" film role as heroic, chainsaw-handed monster fighter Ash Williams, now an... [More]

The Order (2019)
100%

#3
Synopsis: When Belgrave University student Jack Morton joins a fabled secret society, the Hermetic Order of the Blue Rose, he is... [More]

Crazyhead (2016)
100%

#2
Synopsis: A twentysomething woman who can see demons joins a hunter on a quest to end the demon threat.... [More]
Directed By: Al Mackay, Johnny Capps

Death Note (2006)
100%

#1
Synopsis: A high-school student discovers a supernatural notebook that grants its user the ability to kill.... [More]


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A hit Showtime horror series returns from the dead, Amazon acquires Coming 2 America, Warner Bros. TV honcho will step down, and more of the week’s top TV and streaming news.

TOP STORY

The 10-Episode Dexter Return Is Tentatively Scheduled for a Fall 2021 Premiere

Not only are we excited to see the further misadventures of Dexter Morgan, serial killer of the worst of the worst, but Showtime’s newly announced limited series reboot of the 2006-13 drama Dexter means the chance for all of us to be able to wipe what is, hands down, one of the worst series finales in TV history from our memories.

No spoilers for those who haven’t yet, but definitely should, catch up with the series, but one word: lumberjack. You’ll see what we mean.

Joining Michael C. Hall in the return to the series that earned a Peabody Award and numerous Emmy and Golden Globe statues is showrunner Clyde Phillips.

“Dexter is such a special series, both for its millions of fans and for Showtime, as this breakthrough show helped put our network on the map many years ago,” said Gary Levine, Showtime co-president of Entertainment. “We would only revisit this unique character if we could find a creative take that was truly worthy of the brilliant, original series. Well, I am happy to report that Clyde Phillips and Michael C. Hall have found it, and we can’t wait to shoot it and show it to the world!”

Tentative plans are to begin production on the new episodes early next year, for a fall 2021 premiere. No word yet on storyline or other returning cast members, but it’s not a huge spoiler to say many Dexter regulars and scene-stealing guest stars probably won’t come back. There was a lot of death in those eight seasons.


Eddie Murphy’s Coming 2 America Is Coming to Amazon

COMING TO AMERICA, Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall, 1988

(Photo by Paramount Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection)

Eddie Murphy’s much-anticipated Coming to America sequel, Coming 2 America, was scheduled to hit movie theaters in December. But, like so many other movie projects this year, like Aaron Sorkin’s Trial of the Chicago 7, which just debuted on Netflix after an abandoned theatrical release, streaming is riding in to save the day for viewers.

Variety reports that, with movie theater business yet to rebound during the pandemic, Paramount has made a deal to release the sequel on Amazon instead. It will premiere on Amazon on Dec. 18.

Coming 2 America finds Murphy’s Prince Akeem, who married his American love Lisa (Shari Headley) in the original 1988 comedy classic, set to become the new king of his native Zamunda just as he finds out he has a son he knew nothing about in America. With his father (James Earl Jones) hoping that the grandson will be made a prince, Akeem returns to America to unite with his son.

Arsenio Hall also returns in the sequel, as Akeem’s best friend, Semmi, as does John Amos as Lisa’s father Cleo. Also in the cast: Jermaine Fowler, Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones, Garcelle Beauvais, Rock Ross, Louie Anderson, and Tracy Morgan.


 Joshua Jackson: There’s a New Dr. Death at Peacock

Joshua Jackson in January 2020

(Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for Dunhill)

Jamie Dornan is out of the title role in Peacock’s upcoming podcast-inspired drama Dr. Death, and The Affair/Dawson’s Creek/Fringe/Little Fires Everywhere alum Joshua Jackson has signed on as the new series lead.

Based on the podcast of the same name, the series is the fact-based story of Dr. Christopher Duntsch, a well-respected young member of the Dallas medical community as a neurosurgeon. But just as his career really began to take off, his patients, ones going into the operating room for fairly routine procedures, began leaving permanently harmed … or worse. Two fellow surgeons – to be played by Alec Baldwin and Christian Slater – began to suspect Duntsch of some very sick behavior, and set out to stop him from continuing to perform surgeries. Unfortunately, they found out that the patients who needed this protection might be the last ones to get it.

Dornan had to drop out of the project because of pandemic-related rescheduling, as did Stephen Frears, who was set to direct the first two episodes. Maggie Kiley (Dirty John and Riverdale) will replace him, meaning there will be an all-female directing lineup for the limited series.


NEW TRAILERS: HBO Unleashes His Dark Materials Season 2 First Look

The next installment of HBO’s adaptation of Philip Pullman’s acclaimed fantasy novel trilogy premieres November 16, 2020. Season 2 of His Dark Materials begins after Lord Asriel has opened a bridge to a new world, and, distraught over the death of her best friend, Lyra (Dafne Keen) follows Asriel into the unknown. Season 2 series regulars include Keen, Ruth Wilson, Amir Wilson, Ariyon Bakare, Andrew Scott, Will Keen, Ruta Gedmintas and Lin-Manuel Miranda. Joining the cast this season are Terence Stamp, Jade Anouka and Simone Kirby.

More trailers and teasers released this week:

• The Crown season 4 takes viewers into the Princess Diana era of the British royal family. Stars Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth, Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip, Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles, and Emma Corrin as Princess Diana. Premieres Nov. 15 (Netflix)
• Hillbilly Elegy is the Ron Howard-directed adaptation of J.D. Vance’s memoir about growing up in a southern Ohio Appalachian family with an addict mother, and making his way to Yale law school. Stars Glenn Close, Amy Adams, and Gabriel Basso, and premieres Nov. 24 (Netflix)
• The Mandalorian, season 2, finds the return of Pedro Pascal, Giancarlo Esposito, and Baby Yoda, and new figures played by Timothy Olyphant, Rosario Dawson, and Michael Biehn, Premieres Oct. 30 (Disney+)
• Soul is Pixar’s next animated movie, directed by Pete Docter, about a music teacher ( Jamie Foxx) who is separated from his soul just as he gets the chance to make his dreams come true. Also stars Tina Fey, Questlove, Daveed Diggs, Angela Bassett, and Graham Norton. Premieres Dec. 25 (Disney+)
• This Is Us season 5 kicks off with a two-hour premiere, and the aftermath of that awful thing Kevin said to Randall in the finale, on Oct. 27 (NBC)
• Firefly Lane is a drama about a teenage friendship between two girls, which continues across several decades. Starring Katherine Heigl and Sarah Chalke, and based on the bestselling novel of the same name by Kristin Hannah (Netflix)
• Operation Christmas Drop is a romantic comedy about a congressional aide who falls for an Air Force pilot whose base – and holiday gifting program – she may be shutting down, starring Kat Graham, Virginia Madsen, and Alexander Ludwig. Premieres Nov. 5 (Netflix)
• Pennyworth season 2 finds Jack Bannon returning as Alfred Pennyworth in this origins story of Batman’s beloved butler. Premieres Dec. 13 (Epix)
The Stand is a limited series adaptation of Stephen King’s apocalyptic tale of the same name, starring Whoopi Goldberg, Alexander Skarsgård, Greg Kinnear, James Marsden, Owen Teague, Marilyn Manson, and Heather Graham. Premieres Dec. 17  (CBS All Access)
• American Gods season 3 continues the adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s novel, with Ian McShane and company returning and Ricky Whittle’s Shadow Moon fleeing and assuming a new name to hide from the New Gods. Premieres 2021 (Starz)
• Animaniacs is the reboot of the ‘90s animated classic, with Steven Spielberg returning as executive producer. The series will include Yakko, Wakko, and Dot, as well as Pinky and the Brain. Premieres Nov. 20 (Hulu)
• For Life season 2 follows Aaron Wallace (Nicholas Pinnock) as he leaves prison and tries to forge a new life as a licensed attorney on the outside in the 50 Cent-produced drama. Premieres Nov. 18 (ABC)
• John Bronco is a mockumentary about the titular (fake) spokesman for the Ford Bronco, played to perfection by Walt Goggins. Premieres Oct. 15 (Hulu)

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CASTING: Leonardo DiCaprio and Meryl Streep Join All-Star Cast of Netflix’s Jennifer Lawrence Drama Don’t Look Up

Leonardo DiCaprio in February 2020

(Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)

Adam McKay’s upcoming Netflix film Don’t Look Up, about a pair of astronauts who set out to warn the public about an asteroid that is about to destroy the planet, has added a list of talent to join previously announced lead Jennifer Lawrence. Leonardo DiCaprio, Meryl Streep, Matthew Perry, Cate Blanchett, Jonah Hill, Himesh Patel, Rob Morgan, Timothée Chalamet, Kid Cudi, Tomer Sisley, and Ariana Grande join the movie, which is written, directed, and co-produced by Oscar winner McKay.

HBO Max has announced the cast for Mindy Kaling’s comedy The Sex Lives of College Girls, about four young women randomly thrown together as roommates at a prestigious New England college: Pauline Chalamet (The King of Staten Island), Amrit Kaur (Star Trek: Short Treks), Reneé Rapp (Mean Girls on Broadway), and Alyah Chanelle Scott (The Book of Mormon national tour). And yes, Chalamet is the older sister of the aforementioned Timothée.

Better Call Saul star Rhea Seehorn will lead the voice cast of the CBS All Access animated comedy The Harper House, about the “overconfident female head of a household, as she struggles to regain a higher status for herself and for her family of oddballs, after losing her job and moving from the rich side to the poor side of an Arkansas small town.” To save cash, the family moves into the Harper House, an old Victorian fixer-upper they inherited. Jason Lee, Tatiana Maslany, Gabourey Sidibe, and Gary Anthony Williams also star.

Susan Sarandon will be the lead in HBO Max’s psychological thriller Red Bird Lane, about eight strangers invited to an isolated house, with no idea of the danger they face. Danny Huston and Kiersey Clemons also star in the series written by Sara Gran and with John Wells as executive producer.

Billy Dee Williams, Anthony Daniels, Kelly Marie Tran, Matt Lanter, Tom Kane, James Arnold Taylor, and Dee Bradley Baker have joined the cast of Disney+’s LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special, which premieres on the streaming service on Nov. 17.

Keira Knightley has dropped out of the Apple TV+ adaptation of the novel The Essex Serpent, about an abused woman whose husband dies. The period drama was set to begin filming next month, and is on hold until Knightley can be replaced. (Daily Mail)

Stumptown star Michael Ealy has joined the cast of the upcoming ABC medical drama pilot Triage. He will play a brilliant neurosurgeon and good friend of the surgeon played by Parisa Fitz-Henley. (Deadline)

Pen15 star Maya Erskine, Brenda Song, George Takei, Masi Oka, and Randall Park are the voice stars of Netflix’s upcoming animated action series Blue Eye Samurai, about a sword master (Erskine) who is living in disguise while she seeks revenge, set 400 years ago in Japan.

Manifest’s Yasha Jackson will have a recurring role in The Flight Attendant, HBO Max’s dark comedy thriller starring Kaley Cuoco as the titular airline employee who wakes up in a hotel room with a dead man, and no idea how she or he got there. Jackson will play a fellow – rival? – flight attendant.


PRODUCTION & DEVELOPMENT: Regina King Producing CW Supernatural Drama Slay

Regina King in February 2002

(Photo by Taylor Hill/FilmMagic)

Four-time Emmy winner Regina King, most recently for her role in HBO’s limited series Watchmen, is producing the in-development supernatural drama Slay at The CW, with her producing partner, and sister, Reina King. The series revolves around teen Carson, who has otherworldly gifts that allow her to protect a haunted area of Virginia from evil forces. (Variety)

After 22 years at Warner Bros., Chairman of the Warner Bros. Television Group Peter Roth will step down from his Studio responsibilities in early 2021.

The legendary Norman Lear – 98-year-old Norman Lear! – is producing a Fried Green Tomatoes adaptation that will star country singer Reba McEntire. The NBC drama would be set in current times, and feature relatives of the characters in the original FGT book by Fannie Flagg and 1991 movie that starred Kathy Bates, Jessica Tandy, Cicely Tyson, Mary-Louise Parker, and Mary Stuart Masterson. (Variety)

HBO Max has ordered 10 one-hour episodes of a Green Lantern series that will feature many different Lanterns, including Guy Gardner, Jessica Cruz, Alan Scott, and Simon Baz, as well as new characters and favorites like Kilowog and Sinestro. The DC Comics series will be written by and executive produced by by Seth Grahame-Smith and Marc Guggenheim, with Grahame-Smith also the series’ showrunner.

Channing Tatum is an executive producer on SpaceX, a six-episode HBO Max series that will unfold the backstory of Elon Musk’s space exploration company, based on author Ashlee Vance’s book Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future.

HBO Max has made a deal to be the U.S. home for Billie Piper’s British dramedy series I Hate Suzie, about a woman trying to rebound from a computer hacking that resulted in compromising photos of her being made public. (Variety)

When They See Us creator Ava DuVernay will return to Netflix to write, direct, and produce a movie adaptation of Pulitzer Prize-winning author Isabel Wilkerson’s current bestselling book Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, about, how, “beyond race, class, or other factors, there is a powerful caste system that influences people’s lives and behavior and the nation’s fate.”

Ewan McGregor confirmed on last week’s Graham Norton Show that his Disney+ Obi-Wan Kenobi series will begin filming in March 2021.

One of the biggest TV delights of the year, the 10th season of Larry David’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, will be followed up with another season next year. David’s co-star, Jeff Garlin, revealed on Instagram this week that the Curb crew goes back into production in November. Oh, to imagine the fun Larry will have with pandemic lockdown.

Prepare for the elf to leave the shelf and show up all over your Netflix next year. The streaming service has bought the rights to Elf on the Shelf and will turn the beloved book/toy combo into live-action and animated projects aimed at families.

2 Dope Queens’ Phoebe Robinson and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel star Rachel Brosnahan are teaming up for Yearly Departed, an Amazon special that will feature a lineup of female comedians delivering eulogies about 2020. The special will air next winter, by which time we hope anything about 2020 will be funny.

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Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul) and Walter White (Bryan Cranston) - Breaking Bad _Season 5 - Photo Credit: Frank Ockenfels/AMC

(Photo by Frank Ockenfels/AMC)

FALL 2019 TV SURVEY: TV Shows That Defined the 2000s

For Rotten Tomatoes’ annual Fall TV Survey, we asked thousands of our users what they’re most looking forward to in the coming TV season and to reflect on the best shows from seasons past.

Ah, the aughts. Will we one day look back on the decade as a simpler time, when a school teacher becoming a meth dealer was the height of entertainment?

Probably, yes, according to Rotten Tomatoes users, who voted Breaking Bad the show that defined the decade’s television entertainment with 61% of the vote. The Bryan Cranston–led series was followed by The Office with 47% of the vote, and The Sopranos with 45%.

Which TV star ruled in the decade? Fans bestowed that honor on the late, great James Gandolfini for his role as Tony in The Sopranos. Gandolfini received 18% of the vote. Steve Carell followed with 17% of the vote, and Tina Fey grabbed third position away from Jon Stewart 7.96 percent to 7.56 percent.

Disagree with the survey results? Tell us in the comments who you think should have made the list or have been ranked higher.

Family Guy (1999)
%

#20
Synopsis: This animated series features the adventures of the Griffin family. Endearingly ignorant Peter and his stay-at-home wife, Lois, reside in... [More]

#19
Synopsis: Live from New York for more than four decades, celebrity hosts join an award-winning ensemble cast to perform comedic sketches,... [More]
Directed By: Lorne Michaels

#18
Synopsis: Michael Bluth finds himself forced to stay in Orange County and run the family real estate business after his father,... [More]

House (2004)
90%

#17
Synopsis: At fictional Princeton Plainsboro Teaching Hospital in New Jersey, prickly genius Dr. Gregory House tackles health mysteries as would a... [More]

#16
Synopsis: Behind the facade of a postcard-perfect subdivision live four women whose lives are anything but idyllic. Klutzy Susan is divorced... [More]

Synopsis: Accused by some of misinforming its core audience of young adults about international news, this series doesn't hide the fact... [More]

Synopsis: A dedicated group of forensic investigators at the Las Vegas Crime Lab works to solve often-grisly crimes in Sin City.... [More]

Dexter (2006)
71%

#13
Synopsis: Dexter Morgan is a Miami-based blood splatter expert who doesn't just solve murders; he commits them too. In fact, he's... [More]

Grey's Anatomy (2005)
84%

#12
Synopsis: The medical drama series focuses on a group of doctors at a hospital in Seattle, including several who began their... [More]

30 Rock (2006)
78%

#11
Synopsis: Based more-than-loosely on backstage shenanigans at "Saturday Night Live," "30 Rock" centers on young Liz Lemon, currently head writer for... [More]

The West Wing (1999)
75%

#10
Synopsis: Cutthroat presidential advisers get their personal lives hopelessly tangled up with professional duties as they try to conduct the business... [More]
Directed By: John Wells

#9
Synopsis: Ted has fallen in love. It all started when his best friend, Marshall, drops the bombshell that he plans to... [More]

Sex and the City (1998)
70%

#8
Synopsis: A sex columnist, Carrie Bradshaw, and her three friends -- Samantha, Charlotte and Miranda -- explore Manhattan's dating scene, chronicling... [More]

Mad Men (2007)
94%

#7
Synopsis: In 1960s New York, alpha male Don Draper struggles to stay on top of the heap in the high-pressure world... [More]

24 (2001)
87%

#6
Synopsis: Counterterrorism agent Jack Bauer fights the bad guys of the world, a day at a time. With each week's episode... [More]

()
%

#5

Lost (2004)
85%

#4
Synopsis: The survivors of Oceanic Flight 815 were 1,000 miles off course when they crashed on a lush, mysterious island. Each... [More]

The Sopranos (1999)
92%

#3
Synopsis: Tony Soprano juggles the problems of his fractious family with those of a "Family" of a different sort - the... [More]

The Office (2005)
81%

#2
Synopsis: This U.S. adaptation -- set at a paper company based in Scranton, Pa. -- has a similar documentary style to... [More]

Breaking Bad (2008)
96%

#1
Synopsis: Mild-mannered high school chemistry teacher Walter White thinks his life can't get much worse. His salary barely makes ends meet,... [More]


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Daenerys in Game of Thrones season 8, episode 4 (HBO)

(Photo by HBO)

Expectations for the final season of Game of Thrones were higher than the Red Keep’s tallest spire, and, unfortunately, fans and critics alike were not universally impressed with the way creators David Benioff and D.B. Weiss ended the story. Unlike the previous seven seasons — all of which are Certified Fresh with Tomatometer scores well into the 90s — season 8 is not only the lowest-scoring season on the Tomatometer, it is also the first-ever Rotten season of HBO’s fantasy series.

How does that work? Let’s do a bit of math: While the average score of each of season 8’s episodes is a Fresh 68%, a number of season-level reviews (those that consider the season in its entirety) published following the finale have brought the overall season score down into the Rotten range.

“This final season was all about big-huge set pieces, and a lot of the complexity burned away,” wrote Entertainment Weekly’s Darren Franich of the season as a whole. And Slate’s Willa Paskin noted in her review of the series finale, “Benioff and Weiss organized their entire series around an ending that they didn’t write to.”

But Thrones is not the only beloved series that critics felt whiffed its final at-bat. Series with high expectations for their final episodes include everything from HBO’s bro-tastic showbiz satire Entourage to PBS’ prestige TV detective drama Sherlock. And though those expectations might not have been quite as high as the dizzying, dragon-y heights that GoT needed to live up to, both of those series similarly seemed to let down longtime viewers.

Below, Rotten Tomatoes has gathered a list of beloved series whose early seasons were high-scoring and usually Certified Fresh — meaning they all received a large number of reviews, with many from top critics, and a score of more than 75% on the Tomatometer — and whose last season or two descended into Rotten territory. Some shows, like The Office, The West Wing, or How I Met Your Mother, managed to turn Rotten penultimate seasons around into Fresh final ones (which is why those three are not included below). But others, including Game of Thrones, Dexter, and Arrested Development, take their place among history’s best-reviewed shows with poorly reviewed endings.

A note: We’ve only included series with robust scores, and we would also like to reiterate that this is not an indictment of the included series, but rather a numbers-focused presentation of score drops.


Game of Thrones 89% 

Starks at the funeral in Game of Thrones season 8, episode 4 (Helen Sloan/HBO)

(Photo by Helen Sloan/HBO)

Highest-rated season: Game of Thrones: Season 4 (2014) 97%
Final season:  Game of Thrones: Season 8 (2019) 55%
Drop: 44%

While showrunners Benioff and Weiss were never going to please everyone, critics pointed to the series’ penultimate episode, “The Bells,” as a prime example of how “a transportive, well-acted, smartly written drama even non-genre fans can appreciate” (per the RT Critics Consensus for season 1) could devolve into such a divisive experience for fans. The Critics Consensus for “The Bells” in particular echoes a common complaint from the show’s closing moments: “too much plot in too little time muddles the story and may leave some viewers feeling its conclusions are unearned.”


Dexter 71% 

Michael C. Hall as Dexter (Showtime)

(Photo by Showtime)

Highest-rated season: Dexter: Season 2 (2007) 96%
Final season: Dexter: Season 8 (2013) 33%
Drop: 61%

Seasons 1, 2, 4, 5, and 7 of Showtime’s serial killer drama are all Certified Fresh, but seasons 6 and 8 plunged into Rotten territory. The Critics Consensus for season 6 counts “heavy-handed symbolism, an unimpressive villain, and a redundant arc for America’s favorite serial killer” among the reasons for its low score, while the season 8 summary calls it a “a bitterly disappointing final season that is so hesitant to punish its anti-hero for his misdeeds, it opts to punish its audience instead.”


Weeds 70% 

Mary-Louise Parker in Weeds (Showtime)

(Photo by Showtime)

Highest-rated season: Weeds: Season 2 (2006) 100%
Final season: Weeds: Season 8 (2012) 40%
Drop: 60%

The dark comedy followed suburban widow Nancy Botwin (Mary-Louise Parker) as she began to deal pot to make ends meet following the unexpected death of her husband — and eventually transformed into an international drug kingpin. But while the first season was Certified Fresh and the subsequent ones were generally well-liked, RT’s Critics Consensus for the eighth and final season notes that the “final installment burns the series’ remaining goodwill down to a sorry roach with perfunctory plotting and a sense that this story no longer resembles the one fans fell in love with.”


The Killing 68% 

Mireille Enos and Joel Kinnaman in The Killing (AMC)

(Photo by AMC)

Highest-rated season: The Killing: Season 1 (2011) 94%
Final season: The Killing: Season 4 (2014) 47%
Drop: 53%

The Seattle-set slow-burn mystery pursued by homicide detectives Sarah Linden (Mireille Enos) and Stephen Holder (Joel Kinnaman) started off with “thoughtful writing, believable characters, and realistic horror, even if its season finale was unsatisfying,” per the first season’s Critics Consensus. By the fourth season, resurrected by Netflix following AMC’s cancellation, it succumbed to “silliness” and strayed into “distractingly overwrought territory.”


True Blood 68% 

Anna Paquin and Alexander Skarsgard in True Blood (HBO)

(Photo by HBO)

Highest-rated season: True Blood: Season 3 (2010) 91%
Final season: True Blood: Season 7 (2014) 44%
Drop: 51%

HBO’s vampire drama, based on the Southern Gothic Sookie Stackhouse book series by bestselling author Charlaine Harris, took a few seasons for critics to warm up to it (it started at a barely Fresh 61% in season 1 and reached a series high of 95% in season 3). But the third season’s “graphic thrills, steamy romance, and biting satire for its fans” made way for a Rotten final two seasons, as the series ran out of steam and its seventh season was “content to limp along on familiar plot points.”


Arrested Development 74% 

Arrested Development (Netflix)

(Photo by Netflix)

Highest-rated season: Arrested Development: Season 1 (2003) 100%
Final season: Arrested Development: Season 5 (2018) 55%
Drop: 45%, though the drop from season 1 to season 4 was even more drastic at 73%

The first season of the formerly short-lived Fox gem is among the rare seasons Certified Fresh at 100%, and the subsequent two seasons that aired on the broadcast network are also strong with 94% and 100% Tomatometer scores, respectively. Netflix’s revival, on the other hand, can’t quite “live up to its own past.” At least the series’ fifth season (55%) was a bit of a second chance for the cast and creators, as season 4’s Critics Consensus put it simply: “They’ve made a huge mistake.” (Though the series has not officially been canceled, there’s no word on whether Netflix plans to make another season.)


UnREAL 81% 

Lifetime

(Photo by Lifetime)

Highest-rated season: UnREAL: Season 1 (2015) 98%
Final season: UnREAL: Season 4 () 50%
Drop: 43%

All three seasons of the dark, Bachelor-skewering drama that aired on Lifetime were Certified Fresh and brought renewed respect to the female-focused network. The fourth season, however, “fizzled out” and went directly to Hulu (“but the clever antics, confidence, and high energy” remained intact, per the season 4 CC).


Sherlock 78% 

Sherlock - BENEDICT CUMBERBATCH (Courtesy of Laurence Cendrowicz/Hartswood Films & MASTERPIECE)

(Photo by Laurence Cendrowicz/Hartswood Films & MASTERPIECE)

Highest-rated season: Sherlock: Season 2 (2012) 94%
Final season: Sherlock: Season 4 (2017) 54%
Drop: 39%

The first three full seasons of Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat’s modern Sherlock Holmes adaptations were all Certified Fresh with scores in the 90s. But the 2015 Christmas special wasn’t quite as well-received, and the fourth season, which came four years after season 3, was marred by “the lofty expectations created by the series’ lengthy hiatus.” Hm, sounds familiar…


Entourage 65% 

(Photo by HBO)

Highest-rated season: Entourage: Season 5 (2008) 76%
Final season: Entourage: Season 8 (2011) 46%
Drop: 30%

While the Hollywood antics of heartthrob Vinny Chase (Adrian Grenier) and his hangers-on were mostly well-received — most seasons of the HBO comedy are sitting comfortably in the 70s — the seventh season saw a turn as poorly received as Chase’s fictional epic, Medellin. As season 8’s Critics Consensus put it, “With Entourage‘s best stories behind it, the series finale feels like a merciful end.”


Prison Break 61% 

Prison Break's Dominic Purcell and Wentworth Miller (Fox)

(Photo by Fox)

Highest-rated season: Prison Break: Season 1 (2005) 78%
Final season: Prison Break: Season 4 (2008) 50%
Drop: 27%

The Fox drama’s self-explanatory title meant that the series was always going to have to fight against its own premise — there are only so many prisons to break out of, after all — but after a Certified Fresh debut season and a second installment that maintained the series’ “propulsive momentum,” per season 2’s CC, things went downhill. The third and fourth seasons were both Rotten at 50% — and while the original series finale delivered closure for fans, “the season’s ludicrous, plot-breaking twists betray the feeling that this saga should have ended a jailbreak or two before.” Fox’s 2017 revival nearly a decade after the series’ original end, didn’t fare much better: “familiar faces and frenetic action aren’t enough to make up for a plot that manages to bore while beggaring belief,” per the Critics Consensus.


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In 2019, Rotten Tomatoes turns 21, and to mark the occasion we’re celebrating with a series of features that look back at the brightest moments on screen of the past two decades – and one year – and the things that have us excited for the future.

The mortality rate for television characters has increased dramatically in the last two decades. Really, since cable shows like Game of Thrones — with its Stark family curse — chucked out the rule book governing the survival of beloved characters, no one is safe.


Spoiler alert! This article contains plot details for major character deaths in Game of ThronesThe Walking Dead, and 19 other TV shows.


The best surprise deaths can make viewers mourn for fictional characters. When it’s just a publicity stunt or a blatant contract termination, it doesn’t hurt quite as bad. Real-life losses like John Ritter (8 Simple Rules), Phil Hartman (NewsRadio), and Bill Paxton (Training Day), are a different sort of heartrending tragedy.

Rotten Tomatoes rounded up 21 of the most shocking and heartbreaking TV deaths of the last 21 years, which you can read below. Fictional characters only.

Want to argue for a more heartbreaking death? Tell us in the comments below.


21. Laurel Lance (Katie Cassidy), Arrow 86%

The CW

(Photo by The CW)

This most certainly was NOT in the comics! Laurel returned so that softened the blow a little bit, but Cassidy’s goodbye episode of Arrow was brutal. Sent to the hospital after fighting Damien Darhk (Neal McDonough), the doctors made us think she was going to be OK before flatlining her.


20. Lizzie Samuels (Brighton Sharbino), The Walking Dead 80%

The Walking Dead, season 4 episode 14 "The Grove" Melissa Mcbride as Carol and Brighton Sharbino as Lizzie screencap (AMC)

Carol (Melissa McBride) had a crushing decision to make in season 4 episode “The Grove.” After Lizzie killed her own sister and indicated that she planned to kill more — and saw nothing wrong with that — and knowing that there is no way to manage a person having a dangerous psychotic break when you’re on the run with an infant during a zombie apocalypse, Carol made the call to shoot the girl. It was a shocking turn of events in the series and even became a meme (“look at the flowers”).


19. Lane Pryce (Jared Harris), Mad Men 94%

Lane takes his own life after Don discovers he’s embezzled money to cover debts and insists that the SCDP partner resign. The series plumbed the depths of Lane’s despair over his perceived failure, and yet his extreme response was still somehow thoroughly unexpected for the buttoned-up Brit.


18. Teri Bauer (Leslie Hope), 24 87%

Teri Bauer - 24

(Photo by Fox)

24 was a game-changing show for executing its real-time format an hour at a time for 24 hours, and showing the toll it takes on Jack (Kiefer Sutherland) — beginning with the loss of his wife Teri.


17. Adriana La Cerva (Drea de Matteo), The Sopranos 92%

Adriana - The Sopranos

(Photo by HBO)

When a family member cooperates with the FBI, there’s really only one thing for a Soprano to do about it. That didn’t make it any easier to say goodbye to Adriana when Silvio (Steven Van Zandt) drove her out to the woods and chased her through the forest.


16. William (Ron Cephas Jones), This Is Us 94%


William’s death was inevitable from the beginning of This Is Us. Randall (Sterling K. Brown) found him already in the final stages of cancer. On a father-son road trip to Memphis to find out more about William’s childhood, William’s health declined before they could make it home. At least they got to reconnect with one final trip, and William got to leave this Earth with the love of his family.


15. Rayna Jaymes (Connie Britton), Nashville 91%

Rayna - Nashville

(Photo by CMT)

After an automobile accident, country superstar Rayna James passed away in the hospital. It’s still sad to see an exit so permanent, but Britton’s heartfelt thank you note to all the fans and her colleagues jerked even more tears.


14. Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs), The Walking Dead 80%


Carl was just a kid when The Walking Dead started. As he grew up, he grew into more and more of a central character, much to some fans’ discontent. Still, few wished him actual harm. Carl went out the way most supporting characters do on The Walking Dead: death by zombie. At least his bite gave him time to say goodbye and gave Rick a chance to wail “Caaaarrrruuuullll” once more with feeling.


13. Rita Bennett Morgan (Julie Benz), Dexter 71%

Rita Bnnett/Morgan - Dexter

(Photo by Showtime)

Why didn’t Dexter (Michael C. Hall) kill Trinity (John Lithgow) sooner? Once Trinity was onto Dexter, he knew how to hurt him. By the time Dexter finished him off, it was too late. Dexter came home to find his wife, Rita murdered in the bathtub. This was the ultimate reminder that killing serial killers doesn’t make anything right. The victims they took away are still gone.


12. Will Gardner (Josh Charles), The Good Wife 93%

Will Gardner - The Good Wife

(Photo by CBS)

When it came time for Charles to depart the series on which he’d starred for five seasons, his character, Will, didn’t just move to another city. He was shot to death by his own client in the courtroom in a legitimately shocking episode made all the more impactful by the fact that news of Charles’ imminent exit did not leak beforehand.


11. Charlie Pace (Dominic Monaghan), Lost 85%

(Photo by ABC)

It’s hard to single out one death from Lost since the show was so good at making us attached to every character. In the end, it had to be Charlie sacrificing himself to warn Desmond it was NOT PENNY’S BOAT radioing the Oceanic survivors.


10. Wallace (Michael B. Jordan), The Wire 94%

(Photo by HBO)

Jordan was only 15 when he played a teenage drug dealer on HBO’s landmark series The Wire, making the moment when druglord Stringer Bell (Idris Elba) orders his murder all the more tragic.


9. Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), Game of Thrones 89%

Game of Thrones season 8, episode 6, series finale "The Iron Throne" (HBO)

(Photo by HBO)

The Mother of Dragons and Breaker of Chains went power mad in the final moments of the series as she ascended to became ruler of Westeros. Ultimately, however, she wasn’t even able to sit on the Iron Throne she’d dreamed about as a kid; she was betrayed by her lover-nephew, Jon Snow/Aegon Targaryen (Kit Harington), who professed his loyalty, then kissed her while stabbing her in the heart mere feet from her father’s throne.


8. Matthew Crawley (Dan Stevens), Downton Abbey 91%

Matthew Crawley - Downton Abbey

(Photo by ITV)

Crawley estate heir Matthew was so happy to be a new father that he took his eyes off the road to appreciate nature, causing the fatal accident that shocked viewers. Fans later found out that Stevens wanted off the show to explore other opportunities.


7. Sara Tancredi (Sarah Wayne Callies), Prison Break 61%

Sara Tancredi - Prison Break

(Photo by Fox)

Callies could have made our list as Lori Grimes in The Walking Dead for her death during pregnancy, but on Prison Break her head was in a box! Fans demanded her return, so she came back and even showed up in the Fox reboot for a fifth season. At the time during season 3, her demise sure felt permanent.


6. Joyce Summers (Kristine Sutherland), Buffy the Vampire Slayer 84%

(Photo by The WB)

Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar) herself came back to life twice, but her mother Joyce did not have magic to resurrect her. For all the supernatural demons and monsters on Buffy, the Vampire Slayer, Buffy spent one very real hour dealing with a loved one’s death.


5. Denny Duquette (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), Grey's Anatomy 84%

Denny Duquette - Grey's Anaomy

(Photo by ABC)

Denny’s death was a real gut punch, because throughout the entire second season of the long-running medical drama, it looked like Izzie (Katherine Heigl) had done everything to save her patient-boyfriend, including violating protocol to get him a heart transplant. The transplant itself took, but Denny still died of a blood clot and stroke. The silver lining is this role made Morgan a star.


4. Catelyn, Robb, and pregnant Talisa Stark + direwolf Grey Wind (Michelle Fairley, Richard Madden, Oona Chaplin), Game of Thrones 89%

While earlier deaths in the HBO hit fantasy series tipped fans off that anyone could go at any time, the episode nicknamed “The Red Wedding” (season 3, episode 9 “The Rains of Castamere”) took Game of Thrones death pools to another level. Half of the surviving Stark family died in the massacre carried out by Lord Walder Frey and his murderous brood: family matriarch Catelyn, King in the North Robb, his wife Talisa, and their unborn child. And while Roose Bolton was thrusting a dagger into Robb, his men outside killed Robb’s direwolf, Grey Wind, further stunning an audience that was perhaps hoping the animal might avenge its faithful human companion.


3. Glenn Rhee (Steven Yeun), The Walking Dead 80%

Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan, Steven Yeun as Glenn Rhee, Christian Serratos as Rosita Espinosa, Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon - The Walking Dead _ Season 7, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC

On another show where anyone could go at any time, The Walking Dead really psyched people out over the death of main character Glenn. First they made everyone think he died in a walker horde, but then he was somehow safe under a dumpster. Later, Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) beat him beyond recognition as, with his last words, he called out to wife Maggie (Lauren Cohan).


2. Ned Stark (Sean Bean), Game of Thrones 89%


By the end, almost no Game of Thrones death was shocking, but this was the first — and it was the one that told viewers that if the star of the show could die, anyone could. It happened just when things were looking up for Bean, after famously dying in Goldeneye and Lord of the Rings too. For a while, the meme #DontKillSeanBean became a thing.


1. Jack Pearson (Milo Ventimiglia), This Is Us 94%

After Jack escaped the Pearson family’s burning house — saving everyone and the dog — fans all breathed a collective sigh of relief. But he wasn’t safe yet. Viewers were gobsmacked when This Is Us delivered the cruelest twist, killing Jack with a massive heart attack related to smoke inhalation. Because of the NBC series’ unique format, however, this is one character that fans get to spend time with even after he’s dead.


No one is safe on The Walking Dead — except for maybe Rick (Andrew Lincoln). Other central characters can be killed off week to week, and the uncertainty has often been the most exciting part of watching the show. In the midseason premiere of season 8, AMC’s hit zombie series said goodbye to a character who has been on the show since the very beginning.


Spoiler alert! This article contains plot details for a major character death in The Walking Dead and 18 other TV shows.



The mortality rate for television characters has increased dramatically in the last two decades. Really, since cable shows like Game of Thrones — with its Stark family curse — chucked out the rule book governing the survival of beloved characters, no one is safe. The best surprise deaths can make viewers mourn for fictional characters. When it’s just a publicity stunt or a blatant contract termination, it doesn’t hurt quite as bad.

Real-life losses like John Ritter (8 Simple Rules), Phil Hartman (NewsRadio), and Bill Paxton, who was starring in CBS series Training Day when he died in 2017, are a different sort of heartrending tragedy.

Here are 19 of most heartbreaking TV deaths of the last 20 years. Fictional characters only.

Want to argue for a more heartbreaking death? Tell us in the comments below.