The TV Shows Everyone Will Be Talking About in 2019
TV can be an overwhelming place. Not just for the 30 women competing to find true love in front of millions of viewers each week, but for all of us. What are we supposed to watch in 2019? Where do we watch it, even? The answer to the latter is increasingly everywhere, and there’s great stuff all over. From prestige cable to streaming originals, the tube is teeming with so many options that it’s hard to know where to look. Who wants to be the one at the office who didn’t catch the premiere of Lindsay Lohan’s Beach Club? Or that person hiding in the bathroom to avoid Game of Thrones spoilers (no shame!).
In 2019, TV fans will return not only to Westeros but the sun-drenched cliffs of Monterey. (Yes, Big Little Lies is returning — and this time with Meryl oh my god Streep.) Murders will be committed and maybe also solved, pulses will quicken, sides will split — maybe one of those women really will find true love! Whether you’re looking to escape with LiLo to Mykonos or engage with the moral dilemmas of our culture, past (Central Park Five) or present (The Good Fight), the golden age of TV is far from over.
VIDEO: Zoe Kravitz's Big Little Lies
Plus, you don’t have to spring for a movie ticket to see stars like Michelle Williams, Meryl Streep, or Wonder Woman bae Chris Pine. Here are just some of the highlights to look forward to on the small screen in the coming year, and all the premiere dates we can confirm. Better press those PJs, you've got a lot of TV to watch.
Lindsay Lohan’s Beach Club (MTV, January 8)
Oh yes, it’s really happening. For anyone who’s wondered what it would be like to have Lindsay Lohan as a boss and spend summers on the breathtaking shores of Mykonos, now’s our chance. Honestly, anything could happen. But from sneak peeks of Lohan’s island lifestyle, expect all-night parties, wild dance moves, skin-tastic getups, and rivers of booze. The only difference between this and The Bachelor could be the search for love. Who knows, maybe she’ll find that, too. There’s only one way to find out.
Shrill (Hulu, March 15)
Aidy Bryant stars in Hulu’s adaptation of Lindy West’s 2016 memoir about fat-shaming, body acceptance, and working in New York journalism. (The full title of West’s essay collection is Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman.) If you love watching Bryant on SNL and reading West’s incisive New York Times op-eds, the six-episode TV series promises delight and social insight in equal measure. If you need more proof, Lorne Michaels and Pitch Perfect’s Elizabeth Banks, who optioned the book, are both producers on the series. Put it this way: If you were not okay with Insatiable, and sobbed despite feeling somewhat patronized by Dumplin', Shrill will be your show.
The Good Fight, Season 3 (CBS All Access, TBD spring 2019)
The Good Wife spinoff following Christine Baranski’s Diane Lockhart to another (far more diverse) Chicago law firm is quietly the best drama on television. Creators Michelle and Robert King maintain their razor-sharp instincts for ripped-from-the-headlines drama that feels relevant, slick, and yes — fun as hell. In a crowded TV landscape struggling to capture attention and speak to the absurdity of our current political climate, The Good Fight comes out ahead by leaps and bounds. Catch up on the first two seasons while you wait for this one; the payoff is worth it.
Game of Thrones, Season 8 (HBO, TBD April 2019)
Winter is coming… in the spring? Whatever, we’ll wear puffy coats year-round if it means we finally get to see how this story ends. It’s the final season of HBO’s mega-hit, and the dragon droppings are about to hit the fan — big time. Rumors have come and gone, but someone will presumably cop a squat on the Iron Throne by the end of the final six episodes. The Wall has come down, and the White Walkers are heading south. Who’ll live? Who’ll bang? More importantly: Who’ll tell their story? After all, when you play the game of thrones, you win or you die.
Big Little Lies, Season 2 (HBO, TBD 2019)
Everyone buckle up, we’re going back to Monterey. Nicole, Reese, Laura, Zoë, Shailene — Meryl effing Streep! Careful, or we’ll pitch right off that cliff into the sea with excitement. After the HBO mini series’ shocking conclusion, fan fever ran so high that Liane Moriarty, on whose book it was based, returned to the drawing board to continue the story. We know that Streep will play the mother of Alexander Skarsgård’s abusive (and supposedly dead) Perry Wright, and that she’ll get ice cream thrown at her head. Kravitz has said we’ll dive deeper into Bonnie’s story, and several new characters have been added to the drama. Best of all? Every episode will be directed by a woman: American Honey’s Andrea Arnold.
The Bachelor, Season 23 (ABC, January 7)
Colton Underwood was a divisive pick to be the next Bachelor, to say the least. But who are we to give up on love after 22 seasons (yes, 22!). No, Bachelor Nation never turns its back on one of our own, no matter how vanilla or emotionally unavailable a suitor may seem to be. The former NFL player is fresh off a stint on Bachelor in Paradise, most likely still a virgin, and an ex-boyfriend of Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman. He’s also no stranger to showing emotion on screen, and let’s face it — we’re all here for the #drama. Bring on the tears and extremely weird Fantasy Suites.
True Detective, Season 3 (HBO, January 13)
HBO’s prestige anthology-style drama series faltered in its second season after a taut and haunting first outing starring Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson. Expectations are back on high for season 3, and with good reason. Oscar-winner Mahershala Ali stars as a detective whose conscience has been plagued by a case involving a pair of missing children in the Ozarks. The story shifts back and forth in time as the mystery unravels. Expect this one to be the perfect midwinter thriller. Oh, and if it's MConaughey you're after, pop on over to the must-see movies of 2019, where he's appearing alongside Anne Hathaway in a nautical thriller.
I Am the Night (TNT, January 28)
Wonder Woman director Patty Jenkins reunites with Chris Pine (yes, Chris Pine! On TV!) for this TNT thriller series based on true events. When a teenage girl adopted at birth starts digging into her past, she begins to unravel a mystery that may connect her story to the Black Dahlia murder, one of the most infamous unsolved true crimes in American history. Set in 1965 and with all the trappings of a prestige limited series (murder, intrigue, a sex cult, and Hollywood heavyweights working in TV), we could be looking at the next True Detective.
Central Park Five (Netflix, TBD 2019)
Selma and A Wrinkle in Time director Ava DuVernay takes on the notorious false conviction of five black teenagers in a 1989 New York City rape case. The suspects, all between the ages of 14 and 16 at the time, confessed after hours of interrogation, but exculpatory DNA evidence came to light in 2002 and cleared them of the crime. Vera Farmiga, Michael K. Williams, and John Leguizamo co-star in the four-episode series that is sure to spark urgent national conversation about racial justice.
Fosse/Verdon (FX, TBD 2019)
Michelle Williams will star in this FX limited series about real life legendary filmmaker and choreographer Bob Fosse (played by Sam Rockwell) as his lover-cum-muse Gwen Verdon. The buzzy series will reunite the team behind Hamilton, including Lin-Manuel Miranda and director Thomas Kail, while Dear Evan Hansen writer Steven Levenson serves as showrunner. With such theatrical bona fides, expect plenty of backstage insights and of course, neck-snapping moves. Fun fact: Williams wet her feet on Broadway as Sally Bowles in the recent revival of Cabaret, while Fosse won an Oscar for directing that musical’s 1972 film adaptation. Point being: This is going to be good TV.