Time flies and we can’t believe spring is upon us either. But there’s still a lot of 2022 ahead of us and it’s time to take an updated look at our selection of some of 2022’s most anticipated TV shows and returning series, especially since the calendar keeps changing and new dates get announced.
Here’s a selection of some of 2022’s most anticipated TV shows. Keep in mind that the calendar is very much in flux and we only know the exact release dates for some of these titles. But 2022 is shaping up to be a year with a lot of binging potential — both in terms of new series and returning properties.
TV Shows That Have Already Premiered in 2022
All Creatures Great and Small, Season 2 (January 9), PBS: It’s no secret that season one of this PBS Masterpiece show contributed to the soothing of our souls in 2021. This is why we looked forward to season two featuring an even more arresting landscape of Yorkshire Dales National Park, cows in need of compassionate veterinarians, and the very spoiled Pekingese dog Tricky Woo.
Peacemaker (January 13), HBO Max: The DC Extended Universe’s (DCEU) first foray into television was hinted at the end of The Suicide Squad. John Cena returns here as Peacemaker, a superhero who believes in peace at any cost. James Gunn, who wrote and directed The Suicide Squad and instilled it with his characteristic irreverent brand, wrote all eight episodes of this show and directed five of them.
Ozark, Season 4 (January 21), Netflix: Jason Bateman, Laura Linney and Julia Garner return to the fourth and final season of this family saga that follows the Byrdes from the suburbs of Chicago to the Ozarks, in Missouri, as they try to keep ahead in a dangerous game with a Mexican drug cartel. Season four of Ozark will have two seven-episode parts. The first one was released in January and the second one in April.
The Afterparty (January 28), Apple TV+: This murder mystery comedy series is created and directed by Chris Miller (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse) and stars Tiffany Haddish, Ilana Glazer and Dave Franco. Each one of the eight episodes from The Afterparty is told from the perspective of a different character in the show and all of them reframe the story of a murder mystery that takes place during their high school reunion.
Pam & Tommy, (February 2) Hulu: Lily James (Cinderella) is Baywatch actress Pamela Anderson and Sebastian Stan (Falcon and the Winter Soldier) is Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee in this original limited series from Hulu. Pam & Tommy first made headlines when pictures of James and Stan’s transformations into their characters hit the internet. The show focus on Anderson and Lee’s relationship during the 1990s and how the sex tape from their honeymoon was stolen and leaked. You can read our Pam & Tommy review here.
Inventing Anna (February 11), Netflix: This nine-episode limited series is created by Shonda Rhimes — the uber-producer also executive produces the successful Bridgerton for the streamer. The show is inspired by a New York Magazine article by Jessica Pressler about how the pretend German heiress Anna Delvey found a place in New York’s social scene and ended up being a master in the art of scamming. Anna Chlumsky plays a reporter loosely based on Pressler. Julia Garner (Ozark) is the deceitful Anna. You can read our review of Inventing Anna here.
Bel-Air (February 13), Peacock: Inspired by the Morgan Cooper viral fan video that reimagined The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air as a drama shot in 2019, this Peacock original is executive produced by Will Smith himself and has already been picked up for two seasons. Newcomer and West Philadelphia local Jabari Banks has been cast as Will in the show. Bel-Air has seen showrunners come and go a couple of times.
The Dropout (March 3), Hulu: Amanda Seyfried plays Theranos founder and CEO Elizabeth Holmes in this limited series from Liz Meriwether (New Girl). The Dropout follows the rise and fallout of Holmes and her blood-testing start-up and is based on the ABC News podcast of the same name. Alan Ruck (Succession), William H. Macy (Shameless) and Laurie Metcalf (Lady Bird) round out the cast. Read our full review of The Dropout.
Sanditon, Season 2 (March 20), PBS: This somewhat controversial adaptation of Jane Austen’s last and unfinished novel left things very much on a cliffhanger when ITV, the channel that aired the show in the UK, canceled it after the first season. Fortunately, the fate of its heroine Charlotte (Rose Williams) was saved when PBS renewed the show for second and third seasons. Bear in mind though that Charlotte’s romantic interest, Sidney Parker (Theo James), didn’t return to Sanditon. You can read all about Sanditon’s season two here.
Bridgerton, Season 2 (March 25), Netflix: Even if Regé-Jean Page didn’t make us swoon in this second season of the Regency-era London-set show, there was still a lot to look forward to in this new adaptation of Julia Quinn’s series of novels. The older of the Bridgerton siblings, Anthony (Jonathan Bailey), is next in line to get himself a wife. Simon Ashley (Sex Education) plays Kate Sharma, Anthony’s romantic interest and candidate for the family’s newest Viscountess. The show has already been renewed for seasons three and four. You can read our review of Bridgerton season two here.
Moon Knight (March 30), Disney+: This new Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) show, the first one to be released since Hawkeye, stars Oscar Isaac as Marc Spector. He’s “a complex vigilante who suffers from a dissociative identity disorder. These multiple identities who live inside him are distinct characters in the series and will appear against a backdrop of Egyptian iconography,” according to Marvel’s synopsis. You can read our full review of Moon Knight here.
Confirmed New TV Shows to Be Released in 2022
The First Lady (April 27), Showtime: This show is executive produced by and stars Viola Davis — she plays Michelle Obama — and focuses on first ladies Eleanor Roosevelt, Betty Ford and Obama. Michelle Pfeiffer plays Ford and Gillian Anderson is Roosevelt. Danish director Susanne Bier helms all ten episodes of this story.
Obi-Wan Kenobi (May 27) and Andor (2022), Disney+: There’ll be two new shows from the Star Wars universe this year. In the first of them, the Scottish actor Ewan McGregor dons the Jedi’s garb once again. The six-episode series will explore Obi-Wan’s exile on Tatooine. Then there’s the prequel series Andor in which Mexican actor Diego Luna returns to his defining role from Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, playing the rebel spy Kassian Andor.
Ms. Marvel (June 8) and She-Hulk (2022), Disney+: Following WandaVision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki, What If…?, Hawkeye and Moon Knight, this new batch of MCU shows on Disney+ hopes to continue their success. Newcomer Iman Vellani plays Kamala Khan in Ms. Marvel. She’s a 16-year-old Pakistani American growing up in Jersey City and she has an affinity for Captain Marvel (Brie Larson). In the comedy She-Hulk, Tatiana Maslany (Orphan Black) plays a lawyer who specializes in representing superheroes. Expect a visit from the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) in the show.
The Old Man (June, 16), FX on Hulu: Jeff Bridges, John Lithgow, Amy Brenneman and Alia Shawkat star in this adaptation of Thomas Perry’s novel of the same name. Bridges is the titular old man. He’s been on the run for decades but the arrival of an assassin (Gbenga Akinnagbe) upends his peaceful routine. The Old Man is taking a little bit to get to the small screen because the shooting of this show has been postponed on two occasions — first due to the COVID-19 pandemic and then after Bridges was diagnosed with lymphoma in October of last year.
House of The Dragon (August 21), HBO: This Game of Thrones prequel show is set 300 years before the events of the famed and successful show based on George R.R. Martin’s novels and tells the story of House Targaryen and its platinum blonde members. Martin executive produces and is a co-creator alongside Ryan Condal (Rampage), who also serves as the showrunner. House of the Dragon’s cast includes Emma D’Arcy, Matt Smith, Steve Toussaint, Olivia Cooke and Rhys Ifans.
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (September 2), Prime Video: This prequel show is set thousands of years before the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. “Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth,” reads Amazon Studio’s official synopsis. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’s director J.A. Bayona helms the first two episodes of the eight-episode first season.
Willow (2022), Disney+: Let me add yet another Disney+ title with this sequel to Ron Howard’s 1988 film of the same name. Set decades after the events of the movie, the series sees Warwick Davis return as the sorcerer Willow Ufgood. Jon Chu (Crazy Rich Asians) has been tapped to direct the pilot.
Dark Winds (2022), AMC and AMC+: Based on the Leaphorn & Chee book series by Tony Hillerman, this psychological thriller follows two Navajo police officers looking for clues in a double murder case. The show is set in the 1970s Southwest and stars Zahn McClarnon and Kiowa Gordon. Robert Redford and George R.R. Martin executive produce the series with Vince Calandra, who is also the showrunner.
New TV Shows Without a Confirmed Release Date
Interview With the Vampire, AMC: If you’re an Anne Rice fan and weren’t too pleased with the 1994 adaptation of Interview with the Vampire — or if you’re young and never bothered to watch it — this AMC series boasts Rice as a non-writing executive producer, which might make for a better outcome. The eight-episode first season has cast Jacob Anderson (Game of Thrones) as Louis, played by Brad Pitt in the movie, and Sam Reid as Lestat, played by Tom Cruise in the movie.
Daisy Jones and the Six, Prime Video: Based on Taylor Jenkins Reid’s historical bestselling novel of the same name, this limited musical series stars Riley Keough (Zola) and Sam Claflin (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire). The show is executive produced by Reese Witherspoon, who has a very solid track record in the production of adaptations of best-selling women-centric novels (Wild, Gone Girl, Big Little Lies, Little Fires Everywhere). Daisy Jones and the Six follows a rock band’s ascension into success and their unavoidable fall during the 1970s.
Avatar: The Last Airbender, Netflix: Fans of the original animated series rejoiced when it was announced that actor Daniel Dae Kim (Lost) had joined the cast of the live-action version of Avatar: The Last Airbender. The show has also tapped actors Gordon Cormier, Kiawentiio, Ian Ousley and Dallas Liu.
Returning TV Shows With a Confirmed Release Date
Russian Doll, Season 2 (April 20), Netflix: Natasha Lyonne stars and serves as showrunner and executive producer in this second season set four years after her character, Nadia, and Alan (Charlie Barnett) escaped mortality’s time loop. The new episodes “will continue to explore existential thematics through an often humorous and sci-fi lens. Discovering a fate even worse than endless death, this season finds Nadia and Alan delving deeper into their pasts through an unexpected time portal located in one of Manhattan’s most notorious locations,” according to Netflix.
The Flight Attendant, Season 2 (April 21), HBO Max: This dramedy and international thriller based on Chris Bohjalian novel of the same name returns for an eight-episode second season in which Cassie (Kaley Cuoco) finds herself in Los Angeles and sober. She moonlights as a CIA asset while still very much donning the flight attendant uniform, court heels and rolling suitcase. The new season was shot in Los Angeles, Berlin and Reykjavik. Besides Cuoco, expect to see Zosia Mamet, Griffin Matthews, Deniz Akdeniz and Rosie Perez again.
Stranger Things, Season 4 (May 27), Netflix: The 1980s-set fantasy drama returns for a fourth season in which El (Millie Bobby Brown), Joyce (Winona Ryder), Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) and Will (Noah Schnapp) are now living in sunny California, far away from Hawkins, Indiana, and the town’s troublingly easy access to the Upside Down. Chances are we’ll all need a recap of what happened during Stranger Things’ season three finale, which first streamed in July of 2019, by the time season four debuts. Just a reminder that yes, Jim Hopper (David Harbour) is very much alive.
Only Murders in the Building, Season 2 (June 28), Hulu: “Following the shocking death of Arconia Board President Bunny Folger, Charles (Steve Martin), Oliver (Martin Short) and Mabel (Selena Gomez) race to unmask her killer. However, three (unfortunate) complications ensue — the trio is publicly implicated in Bunny’s homicide, they are now the subjects of a competing podcast, and they have to deal with a bunch of New York neighbors who all think they committed murder,” reads Hulu’s official synopsis of season two of one of our favorite murder mystery comedies from last year. Cara Delevingne and Amy Schumer will be two of the new famous faces this season.
The Crown, Season 5 (November 2022), Netflix: The Emmy-winning show returns for a fifth season and, once again, changes the actors who play the main characters. Imelda Staunton takes over from Olivia Colman and portrays Queen Elizabeth II. Dominic West will be Prince Charles. Elizabeth Debicki will inhabit a very tall Princess Diana. And Lesley Manville takes over from the slightly underutilized Helena Bonham Carter to play Princess Margaret.