2016 is already shaping up to be a great year for television, and it’s only been a week.
It started strong with ABC’s “American Crime” return, a surprisingly good TV entry by Jennifer Lopez on NBC’s “Shades of Blue,” and the fantasy series “Shannara Chronicles” from, of all places, MTV.
But there is much more to look forward to in the new year. Cult favourites like “The X-Files” and “Gilmore Girls” are getting revived. Meanwhile, big names are bringing on very exciting new takes on popular genres, as in HBO’s “Westworld,” TBS’s “Angie Tribeca,” and Netflix’s “Love.”
That’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Here are 20 new and returning shows we’re most looking forward to:
Power and politics shake hands, clash, and compete in this New York-set series starring 'Homeland' and 'Wolf Hall' star Damian Lewis and Oscar-nominated Paul Giamatti ('Cinderella Man,' 'Sideways').
So many questions about 'Angie Tribeca.' First, 'Parks and Recreation' star Rashida Jones' next gig is a police procedural. Then, TBS announced it would air all 10 episodes of the show's first season on January 17 and that it has already renewed it for 10 more 'seasons' -- each just one episode and airing a new 'season' every week. Then, we found out it was a parody of cop shows from 'The Office' star Steve Carell and his wife, Nancy. Everyone needs to tune in for this just to figure out what the fuss is about.
Next to 'Daredevil,' 'Agent Carter' is Marvel's most fully realised series in its television rollout. Smart, funny, and stylish, the series relocates Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) in its second season to Los Angeles to hunt down the sinister threats behind the Hollywood facade. This will be good.
Fox's 'X-Files' revival is ambitious as it seeks to further the show's mythology, along with the requisite one-off episodes in the span of six one-hour episodes. But fans are certainly not looking a gift horse in the mouth.
At first, 'The People v. O.J. Simpson' caused many to giggle at the sheer camp (hello, Ryan Murphy is a co-creator) of it all. But then FX released screeners to the media and beyond the silliness, the show is really good. Cuba Gooding, Jr. does Simpson proud, but Sarah Paulson ('American Horror Story') as style-challenged deputy district attorney Marcia Clark is a revelation.
Bobby Cannavale plays a record-label president in this 1970s-set drama that boasts Mick Jagger and Martin Scorsese as two of its executive producers. It's classic rock and roll complete with lots of sex, drugs, and the burgeoning of the punk, disco, and hip-hop music scenes.
The very busy James Franco stays still long enough to star on this Hulu series as a high school English teacher who travels back in time to prevent the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
The eight-part event series based upon the best-selling 2011 novel by Stephen King can brag that King and J.J. Abrams serve as executive producers.
We'll be back to continue to watch Jimmy McGill's (Bob Odenkirk) transformation into the version of him we met in 'Breaking Bad's' Saul Goodman. Season 1's finale certainly set off that journey well.
Life just hasn't been the same without the weekly jaunts through New York City through the eyes of the ladies of 'Broad City.' The good news is that they will be back soon and the season must be good, because Comedy Central has already ordered two more. We can't wait to see how they end up meeting Hillary Clinton.
From 'Girls' and 'Trainwreck' producer Judd Apatow, 'Love' is a hilarious, quirky, and bitter non-romantic romantic comedy. It stars 'Community' alum Gillian Jacobs and the adorkable Paul Rust ('Comedy Bang! Bang!,' 'Super Fun Night'), who also serves as an executive producer.
If Netflix's 'Full House' sequel can deliver a fraction of the entertainment generated by the back-and-forth with the Olsen twins over participating in the reunion show, then we're on board. 'Fuller House' revolves around oldest daughter D.J. Tanner (Candace Cameron Bure), who reunites with sister Stephanie (Jodie Sweetin) and best friend Kimmy (Andrea Barber) to make a go of it with each other's kids in tow. John Stamos (who also serves as an executive producer), Bob Saget, Dave Coulier, and Lori Loughlin are back as guest stars, as well.
Even with its phenomenal first season, the Netflix series has a new showrunner, Doug Petrie, who has teased that the show will be more fast-paced and brighter, not so moody-looking. Aside from style, fans will finally meet Daredevil nemesis The Punisher (Jon Bernthal), and Elodie Yung's Elektra.
Months ago, the Mireille Enos-led show was something to look forward to, but not since 'Grey's Anatomy' has a Shonda Rhimes show had as much drama off-screen as on. 'The Catch' has yet to air, but its creator and showrunners have already jumped ship due to creative differences with Shondaland and ABC. That in addition to recasting two roles from the pilot (though it resulted in Peter Krause joining, which isn't a bad thing). That's enough to make us want to see if the show lives up to the promise of the original pilot. On 'The Catch,' Enos plays a private investigator whose fiance cons her out of millions of dollars before disappearing. It has become her mission to take him down before he ruins her.
With all the conversation surrounding Scientology caused by HBO documentary 'Going Clear,' 'The Path' feels especially timely. Executive-produced by Jason Katims ('Friday Night Lights,' 'Parenthood') and starring 'Breaking Bad' star Aaron Paul, the Hulu series follows a family at the center of a controversial cult.
'Game of Thrones' has never presented so many open-ended questions as it will in the upcoming season. It's quickly lapping George R.R. Martin's books, and being forced to find its own way. Who's coming? Who's going? We could be embarking on the most unpredictable season ever -- and 'GoT' was already quite surprising before.
We can't wait to see what Donald Glover has been working on since jumping ship from 'Community.' Created by the former '30 Rock' writer, the show melds his two fortes of TV and music in a comedy about two cousins making their way through the Atlanta rap scene.
There's much to be excited about when it comes to Netflix's revival of 'Gilmore Girls.' The biggest being that its creator, Amy Sherman-Palladino, will be able to deliver the ending she was unable to bring to the show since she departed after season 6 when contract talks with the CW fell apart.
Mike Colter already brings a lot to a small role on 'Jessica Jones' as Luke Cage, which only makes the anticipation of his own series on Netflix greater.
HBO's description of the drama as 'a dark odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the future of sin' doesn't really tell us much. At the very least, the series promises to be creepy and kinky.
An adaptation of the 1973 sci-fi film of the same name, which was written and directed by Michael Crichton, 'Westworld' is written, directed, and executive-produced by Jonathan Nolan ('Dark Knight'). And J.J. Abrams ('Star Trek Into Darkness,' 'Lost') also serves as one of the show's executive producers. The stellar cast includes Anthony Hopkins, Evan Rachel Wood, Ed Harris, James Marsden, Thandie Newton, and Jeffrey Wright.
Possibly the biggest surprise of 2015 was just how good 'Mr. Robot' turned out to be. Rami Malek really made this series, which also includes Christian Slater a mad hacker. Sam Esmail teased his season 2, saying 'We're about to watch Rome burn. That's the world Elliot's going to enter next season.' Well, we're walking toward the fire.
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