Arguably, Game of Thrones is the biggest TV series right now. But as much as I love it, I’m not heartbroken when a season ends because there’s so much good TV to go around. Here are the top five new series I got hooked on this year while waiting for Game of Thrones.
- Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt tells the story of a woman who’s experiencing normal life after fifteen years of being holed up in an underground bunker with three other women. They were deceived by a cult leader that the world is ending and that the only way to survive was to live in the bunker. The premise sounds dark, but Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is actually a comedy.
I watched Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt during one of my low moments this year, which was great because aside from being a hilarious series, Kimmy’s (Ellie Kemper) story and positivity are uplifting without being sentimental.
You’ll like Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt if:
- You miss 30 Rock and want to see a new series created by Tina Fey
- You like light (but not dumbed down) comedy
- You believe slapstick comedy is effectively funny only in small doses
- You like “fish out of water” stories
- You want to inject some joy in your life
- You find this video funny:
- Penny Dreadful
Penny Dreadful isn’t new; its first season aired in 2014. But not a lot of people are talking about it so it still feels like an undiscovered gem.
Penny Dreadful follows the adventure-filled, and oftentimes terrifying, life of Vanessa Ives (Eva Green) in Victorian London. The series takes inspiration from classic novels such as Dracula, The Picture of Dorian Gray, and Frankenstein for some of its characters and plots.
You’ll like Penny Dreadful if:
- You love Eva Green. She plays the central role of Vanessa so you could stare at her and listen to her raspy voice for hours. She’s stunning in costumes of corsets and lace.
- You’ve read the novels mentioned above and found them boring
- You like stories with mythical creatures like vampires, werewolves, and witches and want to actually be scared of and not fall in love with them
- You appreciate meticulous production details such as makeup, costume, and set design
- Master of None
Master of None focuses on the different aspects of the life of Dev (Aziz Ansari), a thirty-year-old actor living in New York.
This series reflects so much of my values and principles, and I’m weirded out that I find more things in common with a thirty-year-old son of Indian immigrants living in America than the beautiful, good Filipina daughters in our teleseryes.
You’ll like Master of None if:
- You find conversations compelling. All the characters talk a lot. And each episode is really about what the characters have to say on the issue at hand whether that be feminism, LGBTQ, racism, or marriage.
- You like seeing real people on screen. Dev is a short, chubby Indian man. Rachel (Noël Wells), his love interest, doesn’t have a perfectly-proportioned face. The most Hollywood-looking person in the entire series is Claire Danes, and she was there for only one episode.
- You’re a feminist woman
- You want a realistic depiction of a romantic relationship
Catastrophe is a British comedy starring Rob Delaney and Sharon Horgan who play characters with the same name. Rob and Sharon meet in a bar, hook up for seven days, and accidentally get pregnant. They don’t necessarily love each other at first, but they like each other enough to stay together and do the adult thing of supporting each other in the mess they’ve created.
You’ll like Catastrophe if:
- You think sex and relationships are topics that can be depicted realistically, intelligently, and hilariously.
- You’re a parent with a sense of humor when it comes to raising children
- You don’t want to have kids but want to see what it would be like if you would
- You’re a feminist man
- You follow Rob Delaney on Twitter, have read his book, and find him funny
Narcos tells the story of the infamous Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar, his rise to power, and the people who are trying to bring him down.
You’ll like Narcos if:
- You like the intensity of True Detective and the drugs narrative of Breaking Bad
- You miss Pedro Pascal
- You enjoy reading subtitles; more than half of the series is in Spanish
- You like historical drama
- You want to come out of a binge-watching session feeling as if you’ve been intellectually stimulated