In 2019, Game of Thrones ended, we got a bonkers second season of Big Little Lies (Meryl Streep's scream—the end), and we were introduced to a new cast of The Crown. So, what does 2020 have in store for us? Well, we know to expect the next seasons of a few highly rated and critically acclaimed shows (Killing Eve!), as well as a handful of promising new ones (Cherish the Day) and, as ever, more reality TV drama (I'm looking at you, The Bachelor). Thus far, these picks are the most hotly anticipated shows of 2020.
Watch this space, because we'll keep updating this list with the best and brightest in upcoming TV.
Schitt's Creek, season 6
Air date: January 7, 2020, on Pop TV
Starring: Catherine O'Hara, Eugene O'Neill, Annie Murphy, Dan Levy, Emily Hampshire
Why it's a big deal: This is the final season of the award-winning show, by the creators' choice—ending on season 6, to them, felt like the best way to tell the show story "in its totality." If you follow the show, you'll know that for most of the Schitts (plus fan-fave Stevie Budd), things are looking up personally and professionally...with the exception of Moira (Catherine O'Hara). Sweet shenanigans, with a backdrop of tolerance, will likely ensue.
Cherish the Day, season 1
Air date: February 11, 2020, on OWN
Starring: Alano Miller, Xosha Roquemore, Cicely Tyson, Larry Bates, Loren Lott
Why it's a big deal: I have chills. DuVernay's followup to the devastating, gripping When They See Us is "a day in the life of a couple in love." It's sexy, it's sad, it's everything I want a romantic drama to be. DuVernay has spoken often how much she wants to tell authentic Black stories and move beyond stereotypical depictions, and this looks like just the latest in her incredible, powerful storytelling—plus a damn fine romance all on its own.
Little Fires Everywhere, miniseries
Air date: March 18, 2020, on Hulu
Starring: Reese Witherspoon, Kerry Washington, Rosemarie DeWitt, Joshua Jackson
Why it's a big deal: Here's hoping this is 2020's Big Little Lies. This brutal and no-holds barred look at race and class in suburban Ohio promises to be twisty and dramatic—with a similar whodunit: Who burned down the Richardson home? Witherspoon and Washington going head to head (the two are pals IRL, FYI) is gonna be epic. And if the book on which the series is based is any indication, we're in for a whole bunch of crazy. Also: Pacey from Dawson's Creek! Love you!
Killing Eve, season 3
Air date: TBD 2020, on BBC America and potentially AMC
Starring: Sandra Oh, Jodie Comer, Fiona Shaw, Kim Bodnia, Owen McDonnell
Why it's a big deal: Last season of Killing Eve ended on a doozy of a cliffhanger. The potential of the title might've actually come true, with (spoilers!) Eve shot in the back and Villanelle exiting stage right. Early photos have shown Sandra Oh on set, although TBD on what's up with her character. A new showrunner and new characters will mean...more murder.
High Fidelity, season 1
Air date: February 14, 2020, on Hulu
Starring: Zoë Kravitz, David H. Holmes, Jake Lacy, Da'Vine Joy Randolph, Kingsley Ben-Adir
Why it's a big deal: It has been 20(!!) years since the John Cusack movie based on the 1995 Nick Hornby book. Here it gets flipped on its head. Record store owner "Rob" is now embodied by a woman (in this case the ah-MAZE-ing Kravitz), who's still allowed to be as messy, lovelorn, and romantically challenged as the original character. IMO, Kravitz absolutely nails brutal honesty mixed with vulnerability by putting her own stamp on the role. Plus, the supporting cast looks pitch perfect.
The Crown, season 4
Air date: TBD 2020, on Netflix
Starring: Olivia Colman, Tobias Menzies, Helena Bonham Carter, Josh O'Conner, Emma Corrin, Gillian Anderson
Why it's a big deal: This will be the season to watch, even if you're not normally a Crown fan. It'll be the season of Charles and Diana (and perhaps the re-emergence of Camilla). Early pictures look spectacular. It looks like so much precision is being taken over accuracy—the occasional lack of which was a complaint about season 3—and there'll be no need to beef up the drama this time. Real life really was stranger, and sadder, than fiction.
Snowpiercer, season 1
Air date: May 31, 2020, on TNT
Starring: Daveed Diggs, Jennifer Connelly, Sheila Vand, Jaylin Fletcher
Why it's a big deal: If you never saw the original movie with Chris Evans, it's absolutely worth the watch. The gist is: Because efforts to control climate change failed and now 99.99 percent of the world is frozen, the remaining survivors are stuck together on a train that never stops moving in one, long track around the globe. The train is broken into a kind of caste system, with the majority of the passengers in the tail, and the wealthy, privileged ones towards the front. It's bizarre, but believe me—done right, it'll make for some brilliant sci-fi. Also, Hamilton's Daveed Diggs is finally getting the TV vehicle he deserves.
Westworld, season 3
Air date: March 15, 2020, on HBO
Starring: Evan Rachel Wood, Aaron Paul, Jeffrey Wright, Thandie Newton, Ed Harris, Tessa Thompson
Why it's a big deal: Last season was a bit up and down in terms of storylines, but it also had some achingly tender moments (Thandie Newton as Maeve, Zahn McClarnon as Akecheta) and set up a new concept for season 3—robots in the real world. The addition of Aaron Paul bodes really well, I think, and hopefully the showrunners give Evan Rachel Wood, Jeffrey Wright, and the other acting titans something to do. They do call this show the "acting Olympics," after all.
Avenue 5, season 1
Air date: January 19, 2020, on HBO
Starring: Hugh Laurie, Josh Gad, Sacharissa Claxton, Zach Woods, Suzy Nakamura
Why it's a big deal: Missing Veep? Great news: Armando Iannucci, the creator, is at the helm (pun intended) of this sci-fi satire. A luxury space cruise has a terrible accident, and evvvvverything starts to go wrong. The show pulls in some of the best actors from recently ended shows—Hugh Laurie from Veep, Zach Woods from Silicon Valley—and gives them devastatingly funny dialogue to work with. The whole thing looks side-splitting.
The Bachelor, season 24
Air date: January 6, 2020, on ABC
Starring: Peter Weber, Chris Harrison, 30 "lovely" (read: intense) ladies
Why it's a big deal: The show has been entering a new era, one that acknowledges that maybe dating 30 women at once isn't the best idea—see: Colton's season—and that being single and standing up to assholes is okay—see: Hannah's season. Not to mention, we got the first same-sex couple in franchise history on Bachelor in Paradise. Choosing Weber over Mike Johnson for Bachelor felt like a huge step back, but I've been holding out hope that the franchise can keep pushing forward and embrace change, instead of going back to the same tired, old story—if not with Weber, then with new upcoming shows like The Bachelor: Listen to Your Heart and Winter Games.
Lizzie McGuire, season 1
Air date: TBD 2020, on Disney+
Starring: Hilary Duff, Adam Lamberg, Jake Thomas, Hallie Todd, Robert Carradine
Why it's a big deal: I mean. If Disney Channel fans are thrilled by anything in 2020, it's this. The little peeks at the costuming and set have been met with intense excitement—like, really, really intense. There's pressure to do justice to the fanbase, but my hope is that enough time has passed for the subject matter to feel new. We know the character will be living in New York as an interior designer's assistant, and that sounds like a good start. Of course, the recent news that original creator Terri Minsky quit and the show has stalled is devastating. But judging by fan interest, Disney+ will make sure this show finds its way. Frankly, I'm going to watch it whenever it comes out, so I'm still excited.
Katy Keene, season 1
Air date: February 6, 2020, on the CW
Starring: Lucy Hale, Ashleigh Murray, Julia Chan, Lucien Laviscount, Zane Holtz
Why it's a big deal: Like Lizzie, this looks to be light and fluffy (and who doesn't love light and fluffy right now?). This one's a spinoff of Riverdale, but unlike the original, there's sweet banter and romantic drama aplenty as friends attempt to "make it" in the big city. The spinoff will include original, much-loved Riverdale cast member Ashleigh Murray. I've been a fan of Lucy Hale since Pretty Little Liars and I hope this is the perfect vehicle for her. Even though it's technically based off a comic book, it's nice to see something that's not just a remake. And it embraces a diversity of characters, too.
Hunters, season 1
Air date: February 21, 2020, on Amazon Prime Video
Starring: Logan Lerman, Al Pacino, Saul Rubinek, Carol Kane, Jerrika Hinton, Josh Radnor
Why it's a big deal: I mean. Al Pacino?? This must have impressed him enough to take it on, and that's good enough for me (with this and Netflix's The Irishman, I love that he's taking on meaty roles right now). And with the added bonus of executive producer Jordan Peele, I can't wait. The story looks and sounds bonkers: 1977 Nazi hunters realize that powerful forces are intending to create a Fourth Reich in the U.S. and must be stopped. The vigilante justice (and the white supremacy) sounds a little like the original Watchmen, only funnier and without masks? Whatever, I'm totally watching.
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