Need some help discovering what to watch, listen to, read, or catch-up on in the world of TV? This is the place!
Happy 2024, y’all! A new year means lots of new TV to look forward to, and January is starting out strong with True Detective: Night Country, Criminal Record, Masters of the Air, Sort Of, Vanderpump Rules, and more — not to mention the Emmys!
We’re looking forward to it all — starting with Echo, the first series under the new Disney+ “Marvel Spotlight” banner. If you tuned into Hawkeye in 2021, you’re familiar with Echo‘s Maya Lopez (played with expert-level badassery by Alaqua Cox), but this series takes the opportunity to dive much deeper into Maya’s past in Oklahoma, her Native American roots, and her connection (or rather, rivalry) with Kingpin.
MCU lore aside, the series boasts an incredible supporting cast (including Devery Jacobs, Graham Greene, Tantoo Cardinal, Zahn McClarnon and more), plus director Sydney Freeland (who directs four of the five episodes) and Josh Feldman and Shoshannah Stern (ATX TV alums and co-creators/stars of This Close) in the writers’ room. All episodes are streaming now on Disney+, and we plan on binging posthaste.
Need more recs to start the year off right? Read on!
– JENN MORGAN, DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMMING
One final send off for 2023… here’s what we caught up on (or re-visted) over the holidays!
The Real Housewives Ultimate Girls Trip: RHONY Legacy
Why: Once upon a time I watched ALL of The Real Housewives franchises, but a combination of increasing anxiety from some of their fights that hit too close to home (sorry not sorry, RHONJ family drama), increasing number of series, decreasing familiar faces, and no actual change to the number of hours in the day slowly let that reality staple slip from my weekly life. However, in December 2023, Peacock dropped The Real Housewives Legacy: Girls Trip, and the holiday break was the perfect time to be sucked back in. Not only does it feature women I felt I knew best because these were O.G. cast members from one of my favorite cities of the show, but also, they are all women I love (or love to hate) to watch — AND they are in St. Barths, which is beautiful in scenery and legendary in the Real Housewives world for what went down the last time some of these women visited there. Although the full season is only now available (the finale dropped Jan. 4), from the very first episode, it promised to be full of everything I loved from the early days of The Real Housewives: extravagant personal spaces, unnecessary theme parties, and yes, misunderstandings and petty fights. But this season is extra special because it comes with a sense of nostalgia and a sense of maturity. The women are older and they are wiser (especially about how to make fun reality TV), and with that comes a stronger sense of humor about themselves and how they present themselves on screen (at least for some of them). If this was RHONY proper, I would make the time in my schedule to come back to the franchise full time.
When/Where: All episodes are available on Peacock.
– Danielle Turchiano, social Media manager
Why: After binging and moderating a conversation about My Life With the Walter Boys, my heart needed more of the big family drama mixed with all the teen soap. Enter The Fosters. I watched this show week to week when it was originally on, and during this rewatch I can easily say I still love it just as much. Yes, it is a dramatic TV show, so there are many episodes where you’re left asking, “Can anything else go wrong in this exact moment?” but it’s full of so much heart and love that I don’t care. It also touches on many issues that are still (too) relevant, but it does so in a way that isn’t preachy or demoralizing; it instead gives hope. I don’t cry every episode (this is not Parenthood), but when it does have those gut-wrenching moments, they are well earned.
When/Where: Stream the full series now on Hulu.
– Emily Gipson, Co-Founder & Co-President
Why: When I was in college, Scandal was THE show that all of my friends and I were obsessed with. We would gather every Thursday night for wine and popcorn at my apartment and watch every new episode while providing very colorful commentary. However, after I graduated, moved out, got a job, etc., etc., I stopped keeping up with the show and never made it past Season 5. So over the holidays, I have started rewatching the show and I am determined to finish the series. It’s been so long since I’ve seen the show, some of the episodes and twists still make me gasp. I remember the show being crazy when it was airing, but watching it now as a semi-proper adult is truly wild. My opinions on the Olivia-Fitz-Jake love triangle have definitely changed during this second viewing, but that’s a conversation for another day (with wine and popcorn).
When/Where: All episodes are available on Hulu.
– VICTORIA BURK, OPERATIONS COORDINATOR
Why: By virtue of being a ‘90s baby, I certainly know who David Beckham is (Posh Spice’s husband — duh), but prior to this doc, I don’t think I’d ever actually watched him play a match. (I know. I KNOW! I’m upset too!!) Now, having finally seen Beckham, it’s kind of all I want to do. Whether or not you’re a fan of Beckham, football, or sports in general — there is truly nothing more satisfying than watching someone who is preternaturally talented at something do what they do best — something that director Fisher Stevens knows well. The series manages to capture both the incredible highs and lows of Bechkam’s career and the pop-cultural supernova that was “Posh and Becks,” as well as guest appearances by a host of managers, teammates, rivals, friends, and more — all within the span of four episodes. I may have gotten there a bit late, but this absolutely makes the list of favorite things I watched in 2023.
When/Where: Stream it now on Netflix.
– Jenn Morgan, Director of Programming
Pretty Hard Cases
Why: I had been waiting what seemed like forever to get access to Season 3 of this Canadian gem. Season 2 dropped in the States in April 2022 and Season 3 began airing on CBC in January 2023. See what I mean? WAITING. FOREVER. FOR-EV-ER! Once I had Sam & Kelly (aka: Skelly) back in my life, I couldn’t wait to tear through the episodes but had to pace myself, a little bit anyway, because I knew this was the last season of the show. ::cue sobbing:: The comedy is fantastic; it doesn’t take itself too seriously, embracing both comedy and wit. And each season’s case always has great twists and intrigue, but my absolute favorite thing about this show is the relationships. They are deep, caring, and imperfect. They give me fuzzy feelings in my cold, black heart (especially Skelly) and I will desperately miss the opportunity for more stories involving these characters. Guess that means it’s time for a rewatch!
When/Where: All episodes are available on Amazon Freevee (US); CBC Gem (Canada).
– Janice Noske, Programming Manager
IN THE QUEUE
A little something to look forward to, as a treat.
Criminal Record starts with a phone call from a woman who reveals that an abusive man in her life says he killed a woman years before and another man is in prison doing his sentence. This isn’t just a show that tries to find one perpetrator, though; it is a thoughtful character drama that examines the lives of everyone affected, from the original victim’s son, to the man convicted of her murder, to the detectives who put him away. Cush Jumbo (one of my favorites from The Good Wife), and Peter Capaldi (the 12th Doctor himself!) star, and they are both so exciting to watch.
Criminal Record premieres Jan 10 on Apple TV+. Watch the trailer HERE.
– Danielle Turchiano, Social Media Manager
Law & Order: EVERYTHING!
It. Is. Time. Law & Order: EVERYTHING, aka Law & Order, Law & Order: SVU, and Law & Order: Organized Crime are all back on January 18th! I’m excited for all of it, I just can’t look away from the Dick Wolf universe, but let’s all be honest, we’re here for Mariska Hargitay / Olivia Benson, who is the longest-running primetime live-action character of all time. In Olivia I trust.
The Law & Order universe returns January 18 on NBC. Stream your favorites on Peacock!
– Laura Kincaid, Director of Operations
Percy Jackson & The Olympians (Disney+)
I read the first book in this series long ago but have debated whether I would watch the series (mainly because I’m pretty adamant that one MUST read the books before watching a show/movie). However, I love a great YA fantasy adventure, and I have on good authority from people I know that love the books that while this is an excellent adaptation, it is also a great watch for those that have not read. You’ve got a quest, a trio of friends, and a cameo by Lin-Manuel Miranda. What more do you want?
Season 1 is airing now on Disney+. Watch the trailer HERE.
– Emily Gipson, Co-Founder & Co-President
More TV, but for your ears.
Stick The Landing
Hosted by Andy Greenwald
New pod alert, Baranskis! Writer/producer and co-host of The Watch podcast, Andy Greenwald, is hosting a new series called Stick the Landing, which will revisit “iconic season finales from the past to see what they might tell us about our TV-watching future. Each episode will feature a different guest to revisit finales from shows such as Friday Night Lights, Freaks and Geeks, and The Office and ask a central question: Did it stick the landing?”
As TV connoisseurs, longtime listeners of “The Watch,” and nerds who really enjoy a good finale debate, we’re looking forward to this one. “Stick the Landing” launches Jan 17 on Spotify (on The Ringer’s “Prestige TV” feed,” but you can subscribe now!