2016 is here! So let’s take a look at what is coming up this year, and determine what we are most excited for. There are a bunch of highly anticipated returns coming, including Game of Thrones, and even the long absent The X Files. This list, however, is all about new shows. For the first time ever I am also including a runner up on this list. I am doing so, because it is a show we so actively talk about in our podcast, The Weekly Set, and video series, TVE Versus Marvel and DC. Without further ado, here is our list of the top 10 new shows we are looking forward to in 2016.
Runner Up – Legends of Tomorrow
We had a lot of excitement for Legends of Tomorrow, a DC property that seems to eschew all of the grounding that gets in the way of The Flash. It is still a highly anticipated series for us, but after the Hawk Girl/Hawk Man centric Flash/Arrow crossover this year, my hopes have sunk considerably.
10. The Shannara Chronicles
Though MTV’s presence in the show puts me on guard, The Shannara Chronicles just looks stunning, and with the presence of Manu Bennett (Spartacus, Arrow) and John Rhys-Davies (Lord of the Rings), I can’t help but anticipate this fantasy epic.
09. Mad Dogs
This remake of the British series of the same name is being handled by Shawn Ryan (The Shield). Amazon released the pilot episode as part of their pilot season last year, and it was our second favorite after The Man in the High Castle. While the initial set-up felt a little too much like a douchey bro-fest Entourage clone, the climax at the end was full of suspense and tension.
JJ Abrams adapts Stephen King, in what might just be Hulu’s first truly great original series. 11.22.63 follows a Time Traveler facing the assassination of US President John F. Kennedy. If the concept and background aren’t enough to interest you, the series stars James Franco as said Time Traveler. If 11.22.63 isn’t Hulu’s House of Cards, perhaps their next project, The Path, which takes a critical look at a Scientology-esque cult, will be their Orange in the New Black. Welcome to the content game Hulu.
07. The Magicians
Magic is a drug. That is the tagline SyFy is using to promote their new series The Magicians. We have been excited since the first trailer. SyFy screened the first episode, commercial free, after the last part of Childhood’s End last year. While I felt that, overall, the series was just so so, the ending hit me hard and made me desperate for my next fix. Perhaps it isn’t magic that is the drug, but The Magicians.
Robert Kirkman is sitting pretty right about now. The Walking Dead is the biggest show on cable television, the spin-off series Fear The Walking Dead got off to a strong start, and now each and every property he has ever touched have become hot commodities. Next up for the comic book writer is an adaptation of his demon possession graphic novels, Outcast. Cinemax has a big hole to fill, with Strikeback over, and Banshee ending this year. What better to fill that hole than an edgey property from the most in demand source material creator in TV today.
FX did the right thing with Louis CK’s comedy series Louie, they took their hands off, and kept the budget low. As a result, Louie has been some of the smartest comedy to ever grace a television set. Now Mr. CK is joining up with comedian Zach Galifianakis (The Hangover) for a new edgy comedy on the cable giant. This one is about a bitter rodeo clown, who dreamed of Parisian Clown glory. Count me in.
LOST Showrunner Carlton Cuse continues his prolific show fostering with this new science fiction series on USA. This time, Cuse is teaming up with LOST alumni Josh Holloway, and The Walking Dead’s Sarah Wayne Callies. The story is about an occupying force, and a resistance fighting against them. Details on the occupying force are being kept close to Cuse’s chest, but the top guess is aliens.
03. Luke Cage
After 2 phenomenal Marvel shows on Netflix, the 2 giants are teaming up again for Luke Cage, the 3rd in their Defenders plan. Cage already appeared in Jessica Jones, and the 2 titular characters showed some amazing chemistry. We’ll have to see if the Marvel/Netflix partnership can bear great fruit a 3rd time. Our hopes are high.
One of my best friends practically squealed like a schoolgirl when he learned that this series was actually being made. Preacher is one of those impossible adaptations that nobody thought could ever be made. Too long and complex for a movie, too expensive for a cable TV show, too edgy for network. Preacher was an “unfilmable”, much like Watchmen, Game of Thrones, and The Dark Tower. Watchmen has been made into a movie, Game of Thrones is a hit series on HBO, and The Dark Tower is currently in development as well. Maybe nothing is unfilmable anymore.
When we first learned that HBO was remaking the campy old movie Westworld as a TV series, our interest was low. Then we found out that Jonathan Nolan (Person of Interest) and JJ Abrams were involved, and that they were looking towards a more existential portrayal of artificial intelligence. Suddenly the show hit our radars. But it was the absolutely insane casting that took our breath away. Ed Harris, Evan Rachel Wood, Jeffrey Wright, and just to put a cherry on top, Anthony Hopkins. If there’s ever a sign that TV has surpassed film as the storytelling medium to pay attention to, this is likely it.
What do you think? Tell us in our comments, and stay tuned to TVEnthusiast for more coverage of all of your favorite shows.