The Paste Summer TV Guide: 25 Shows to Watch

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The <i>Paste</i> Summer TV Guide: 25 Shows to Watch

Ah, summer. A time to kick back, relax, and watch any one of the 4,000 TV shows available on 70 different streaming services. These numbers are rough estimates, but you get the vibe. There’s a lot out there, so what is a viewer to do? Fear not: the Paste TV writers have hand picked our 25 most anticipated shows this summer, both new and returning series, in order of premiere date.

A note on the selections: Several series were announced after we constructed this list, so we also wanted to give a shoutout to What We Do in the Shadows (July 12th on FX) and Reservation Dogs (August 3rd on Hulu)

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The Orville: New Horizons

Status: Returning
Network: Hulu
Premiere Date: Thursday, June 2

It has been a loooooooong wait for fans of The Orville, Seth MacFarlane’s version of Star Trek. The Season 2 finale aired way back in April 2019, and a series of delays, mostly due to COVID and a switch from Fox to Hulu, led to frequent premiere date pushbacks. Three years later, all the main cast members have returned and the USS Orville has jumped 400 years into the future. Based on a trailer released in February, viewers are in for a wild ride when The Orville: New Horizons finally hits TV screens. —Terry Terrones


The Boys

Status: Returning
Network: Prime Video
Premiere Date: Friday, June 3

One of the most ambitious superhero send-ups on television finally returns this summer, promising new supes, tons of violence and … an orgy? Yeah, we read that right. The series, based on the comic from writer Garth Ennis and artist Darick Robertson, threads the needle as a crass and violent superhero series, grounded drama, hilarious comedy and political thriller all rolled into one. Season 3 looks to be the most unhinged batch of episodes yet, as the series adds new supes in Jensen Ackles’ Soldier Boy and Laurie Holden’s Crimson Countess, and it’s even been teased that Karl Urban’s Billy Butcher might be getting some superpowers of his own. This season also promises to adapt the incredibly depraved “Herogasm” story arc, where the world’s mightiest heroes all go off to a super-powered sex party that The Boys have to infiltrate. It’s gonna be wild. —Trent Moore


Irma Vep

Status: New
Network: HBO
Premiere Date: Monday, June 6

Do you like crime movies? Classic French cinema? Do you like shows and movies about the making of movies? If you answered yes to any of those, I’ve got just the thing. Olivier Assayas is adapting his 1996 film Irma Vep to TV, with Alicia Vikander (Ex Machina, The Green Knight) starring as Mira, a “disillusioned American actress” who goes to Paris to star in a remake of the French silent serial crime film Les Vampires, while struggling to keep her personality and that of her character, Irma Vep, distinct. In the film, the actress (Hongkonger Maggie Cheung playing herself) is caught amid a chaotic set where she’s romantically desired by both the costume designer dressing her in tight black rubber (played in 1996 by Nathalie Richard and in 2022 by Jeanne Balibar) and the has-been director (formerly Jean-Pierre Léaud, now Vincent Macaigne) trying to revive his career while engaging in meta commentaries on the direction of the film industry. The series is produced by A24, everyone’s favorite burgeoning indie production house, and will likely play in the arenas of the psychological and the surreal. As the movie is based around the adaptation of a serial film from the 1910s that in total was about seven hours, it’ll be fascinating to see how moving from a 97-minute picture to an eight-episode miniseries flexes Assayas’ ability to comment on the film’s subject. Besides the Swedish Vikander, the series will include actors from China, England, Germany, Puerto Rico, and, of course, France. After The Offer and The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, I’m looking forward to looking through another lens at movie production chaos and learning more about French film. —Kevin Fox, Jr.


Ms. Marvel

Status: New
Network: Disney+
Premiere Date: Wednesday, June 8

Marvel’s turn to television has provided a mixed bag of results, but Ms. Marvel has renewed the hope within many fans, both fervent and casual. On paper, the new teen superhero show sounds manufactured in a lab for me: a nerdy, day-dreaming brown girl is suddenly given superpowers, which finally allow her to fit in at school and gain the attention of her crush. I mean, whomst among us can’t relate?

The trailer’s vibe feels as much like a Disney show as it does a Marvel series, something that the entertaining AND successful Tom Holland-led Spiderman movies mastered with its equal parts high school drama and superhero antics. Ms. Marvel promises to explore not only Kamala’s life at school, but also her life at home as a Pakistani-American. Seeing South Asian culture at the forefront of a mainstream show like this—complete with a magical bangle, trips to the mosque, and a cameo from Bollywood superstar Farhan Akhtar—is exciting for members of the diaspora across the world.

So while we wait to see whether the show delivers on the stakes, story, and charisma needed to carry a Marvel franchise, I’ll keep playing “Blinding Lights” on repeat with the hope that one of my bangles will suddenly give me powers, too. —Radhika Menon


Queer as Folk

Status: New
Network: Peacock
Premiere Date: Thursday, June 9

Third time’s a charm for Queer as Folk as it enters into its second reboot. Originally a British series that premiered in 1999, then an American series that debuted 2000, the property is back again, this time on Peacock. The previous iterations of the show were groundbreaking at the time, being one of the first shows telling queer stories in the early 2000s. Peacock’s reboot is even more diverse, featuring non-binary and trans characters, and promising to show the reality of the queer experience in the 2020s. The new show is set in New Orleans, and it’ll be interesting to see what the setting change brings to a series that’s been done so many times. —Anna Govert


Peaky Blinders

Status: Returning
Network: Netflix
Premiere Date: Friday, June 10

The Peaky fooking Blinders return! The sixth and final season of the Netflix gangster series will finally arrive in America in June. A breakout success, Peaky Blinders has proven to be an addicting show filled with stylish action and some of the best anachronistic music cues in the business. The last time we saw the Shelby gang, fascism was on the rise and the start of WWII was approaching. The series has become one of my favorite shows the past few years, and I’m anxious to see how Tommy Shelby and Co. make it out of the series (if they even do). Season 6 will also be bittersweet due to the absence of Helen McCrory’s Aunt Polly after the actress passed away last year. Peaky Blinders has been one of the most fun shows on television the last several years, so here’s hoping it gets the spectacular finale it deserves. —Leila Jordan


For All Mankind

Status: Returning
Network: Apple TV+
Premiere Date: Friday, June 10

For All Mankind has never garnered the mainstream fervor that other, more recent Apple TV+ originals have, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t deserved it. After a slow start to the first season, which saw the Soviets beat America to the Moon and 20th century history start to unfurl in wildly different ways as a result, the show leapt ahead to the early ‘80s for its second season, and the narrative it had been building to all along came into sharp focus. With Cold Warring Moon bases, women in the seats of power at both NASA and in Washington, and a long-awaited Martian mission finally on the horizon, Season 3’s flash-forward to 1995 can’t come soon enough. —Alexis Gunderson


First Kill

Status: New
Network: Netflix
Premiere Date: Friday, June 10

If you watched Twilight and thought it could be a lot gayer, then this is absolutely the show for you. Netflix’s First Kill, based on a short story by V.E. Schwab, follows teenage vampire Juliette as she attempts to make her first kill, only to be met with the might of teenage vampire-hunter Calliope. In a tale as old as time, two girls from warring houses find their love torn at the seams by ages-old battles between vampires and hunters, all while still trying to survive high school. Just like Netflix’s other most-recent queer drama Heartstopper, First Kill will be an eight-episode binge. —Anna Govert


Dark Winds

Status: New
Network: AMC/AMC+
Premiere Date: Sunday, June 12

Zahn McClarnon? Sign me up. One of our greatest unsung actors is joined by Kiowa Gordon playing two Navajo police officers in the 1970s Southwest. Dark Winds is based on the Leaphorn & Chee book series by Tony Hillerman, and is billed a psychological thriller that will run an economic six episodes. There are not nearly enough series about Native Americans on TV, and the fact that this series—like FX’s excellent Reservation Dogs—has a fully Native American writers’ room is a step towards rectifying that. Hugely looking forward to this one. —Allison Keene


Becoming Elizabeth

Status: New
Network: Starz
Premiere Date: Sunday, June 12

Following in the footsteps of The White Princess and The Spanish Princess, Becoming Elizabeth takes us further into the Tudor dynasty with the lesser-known story of Queen Elizabeth I’s early years. Casting about in chaos after King Henry VIII’s death, the court is facing a power vacuum that many believe only a teenaged Elizabeth can fill. In addition to this drama and intrigue, the series looks to boast some truly excellent period costuming, and some insight into a young woman destined to become a historical icon. —Allison Keene


Evil

Status: Returning
Network: Paramount+
Premiere Date: Sunday, June 12

Television’s best horror show (which also happens to be one of television’s best shows about religion, faith, and doubt) returns for another chaotic round of spiritual crisis, body horror, general creepiness, and sublimated sexual desire. Evil Season 2 ended with a newly ordained David (Mike Colter) almost immediately breaking his priestly vows with Kristen (Katja Herbers), who had just tearfully confessed to murder. Elsewhere, Leland (Michael Emerson) is busy infiltrating the Catholic Church itself, even as he lures Kristen’s mother Sheryl (Christine Lahti) deeper into an underground satanic cabal where demonic powers are passed down through the literal eating of human flesh. (Can we believe this show used to air on CBS?) Where Season 3 will go is anybody’s guess, but let’s be real—even your wildest predictions probably aren’t out of the realm of possibility. —Lacy Baugher Milas


Love Victor

Status: Returning
Network: Hulu
Premiere Date: Wednesday, June 15

Though the Love, Simon spinoff may have had a rough first season, Love, Victor really hit its stride on its second go around. The first episode will answer the question we left off on last season: Whose doorstep did Victor end up on, Benji’s or Rahim’s? Either way, the final season of Love, Victor now has a high standard to live up to, and it’ll be nice to see how far Victor has come since he was a closeted, unsure kid in Season 1.

That’s not to leave out any of Victor’s compatriots either. Pilar and Felix are at the start of a new phase of their relationship, Mia and Andrew have decided to find Mia’s absent mother, and Lake is at the beginning of a new era of self-discovery now that she’s accepted she’s interested in Lucy romantically. Eight episodes might not seem like a lot of time to tie everything up, but if last season was any indication, Love, Victor looks like it will be the recipient of a proper sendoff, even if it’s a little short. —Kathryn Porter


The Old Man

Status: New
Network: FX
Premiere Date: Thursday, June 16 (two episodes)

Based on the novel of the same name by Thomas Perry, FX’s new drama The Old Man gives off some early 2010s FX Golden Age vibes (if you know, you know). The seven-episode first season stars Jeff Bridges as Dan Chase, a mysterious and dangerous man who fled his job with the CIA decades ago, and John Lithgow as his one-time compatriot Harold Harper. When an assassin tracks Dan down after decades of living off the grid and forces him on the run, the show becomes a compelling two-hander as Dan must reconcile with his past at the same time his former friend is brought in to hunt him down. This might just be exactly the kind of drama FX needs right now. —Kaitlin Thomas


Rutherford Falls

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Status: Returning
Network: Peacock
Premiere Date: Thursday, June 16

Ugly intersections of history, power, and colonialism might not seem like go-to sitcom material, but Rutherford Falls proved otherwise with its wonderfully charming first season. Co-created by Mike Schur, Ed Helms, and Navajo showrunner Sierra Teller Ornelas, the Peacock series broke ground with its Native representation behind and in front of the camera. Central to the action are best friends and museum nerds Nathan Rutherford (Helms) and Reagan Wells (Jana Schmieding), who find themselves divided on how best to portray the fictional Minishonka Nation’s and the titular town’s shared history. He’s a proud descendant of the town’s founder; she runs the neglected Minishonka Cultural Center that lives in a casino. An incredible Michael Greyeyes plays casino owner Terry Thomas. Amiable situational comedy thrives thanks to the fully realized characters, blending Schur’s familiar optimism with careful consideration of who controls which stories get told. The show returns for a second 10-episode season this summer, making it clear that Rutherford Falls is just getting started telling this story.—Annie Lyons


The Summer I Turned Pretty

Status: New
Network: Prime Video
Premiere Date: Friday, June 17

When I was in high school, I never spent the summer in a sleepy beach town while two brothers vied for my love and affection. But it sounds amazing, doesn’t it? Even though I’m well past the target demographic, I love a good soapy teen drama full of angst and romance. And The Summer I Turned Pretty looks so promising. Author Jenny Han, whose To All the Boys I Loved Before books became a trio of delightful movies on Netflix, now takes her talents to Prime Video for a series based on her debut novel, The Summer I Turned Pretty. In it, Belly (Lola Tung) spends the summer at the beach with her mom and older brother, and romance blossoms as Belly is torn between two brothers: bad boy Conrad (Christopher Briney) and nice guy Jeremiah (Gavin Casalegno). It sounds like a 2022 version of Dawson’s Creek. What more could we want?—Amy Amatangelo


Motherland: Fort Salem

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Status: Returning
Network: Freeform
Premiere Date: Tuesday, June 21

To me, nothing is better than a show that’s been renewed for a final season. Motherland: Fort Salem’s third outing will be its last, and it’s going to be all the better for it. Hot off their prison break in last season’s finale, we’ll see Raelle, Abigail, and Tally in hiding as they attempt to evade the White House-sponsored witch-hunters. After the trio were separated for much of Season 2, we can only hope that they’ll spend the majority of their last moments together. After all, Motherland: Fort Salem has shown time and time again that they’re at their best together, and it would only be fitting for their story to conclude with them by each other’s sides. Plus, the show has some very complex (and underappreciated) world-building, and that is something that everyone deserves to experience. —Kathryn Porter


The Umbrella Academy Season 3

Status: Returning
Network: Netflix
Premiere Date: Wednesday, June 22

Even as streaming services are becoming filled with more superhero shows than ever before, The Umbrella Academy stands out from the crowd. Adapted from the comic series by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá, the show follows a group of superpowered adoptive siblings forced to reunite in adulthood to face down apocalyptic threats. With Stranger Things’s diminishing returns between seasons and most everything else getting canceled after a year or two, the creative and character-driven Umbrella Academy may now be the most reliably entertaining sci-fi binge on Netflix. Season 3 is set to introduce a new group of strange characters in the new timeline created via Season 2’s time travel shenanigans, while also promising further development of the dysfunctional heroes fans know and love. We’re particularly curious to see how the season handles Viktor, Elliot Page’s character formerly known as Vanya before the actor came out as transgender between seasons. —Reuben Baron


Loot

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Status: New
Network: Apple TV+
Premiere Date: Friday, June 24

For their Prime Video series Forever, creators Alan Yang and Matt Hubbard explored the implications of marital vows, but made it comedy. For their new Apple TV+ series, the duo look at corporate greed and redemption. Casting Forever lead Maya Rudolph as a billionaire who spirals publicly when her husband takes everything but the non-profit she forgot she had, the show is both a workplace comedy and a message on what it means to be a “good” person. Michaela Jaé Rodriguez also stars as Sofia Salinas, the head of the non-profit who worries that bad exposure will hurt the cause, while Ron Funches, Nat Faxon, and Joel Kim Booster also appear. —Whitney Friedlander


Only Murders in the Building

Status: Returning
Network: Hulu
Premiere Date: Tuesday, June 28

One of TV’s most unexpected hits returns with an unexpected second season, and I couldn’t be happier. Don’t get me wrong, I was always thrilled by the idea of more Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Selena Gomez teaming up as amateur podcaster sleuths to solve more murders. But how many more murders could this New York condo building take? In a twist, our heroic trio were left on the hook at the end of Season 1, but Season 2 is hopefully just as tightly written, hilariously performed, and engrossingly twisty as the first. —Allison Keene


Moonhaven

Status: New
Network: AMC+
Premiere Date: Thursday, June 30

There was something special about the way the short-lived series Lodge 49 portrayed its everyday people with their everyday problems, longing to find something more. If showrunner Peter Ocko, who also wrote for Dead Like Me and Pushing Daisies, could make the mundane seem magical, I can’t wait to see what he does with a futuristic sci-fi series. Moonhaven takes place 100 years in the future on an idyllic lunar colony, where all may not be as it seems. Starring Emma McDonald, Dominic Monaghan, and Joe Manganiello, the show is co-produced by author Deb Spera. -Josh Jackson


Black Bird

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Status: New
Network: Apple TV+
Premiere Date: Friday, July 8

It’ll be interesting to see if the nascent, Academy Award-winning Apple TV+ can keep up its 2022 programming magic with this true-crime tale about a convict negotiating his sentence by trying to extract evidence from a fellow inmate pertaining to an unproven serial killer spree. Once rumored to have Martin Scorsese attached, the project is now in the hands of The Wire and Mr. Mercedes scribe Dennis Lehane, and stars the always watchable Paul Walter Hauser as the would-be serial killer and Taron Egerton—in his first live-action role since portraying Elton John in Rocketman—as the surreptitious interrogator. At a tight six episodes, this doesn’t look like the teasing reveals will be too stretched out, and the talent is all lined up for a gripping watch. —Rory Doherty


Better Call Saul (Part 2)

Status: Returning
Network: AMC
Premiere Date: Monday, July 11

Better Call Saul’s excellent final season continues this summer with the series’ final six episodes. If the first half of the season, which premiered in April and promptly 1) stressed us the heck out, and 2) broke our hearts, there’s little reason to believe the series’ true swan song won’t feature more of the same as we creep closer and closer to the exciting but ridiculously tense world that was depicted in Breaking Bad more than a decade ago. I know I’m not emotionally prepared to say goodbye to Jimmy/Saul (Bob Odenkirk), Kim (Rhea Seehorn), Mike (Jonathan Banks), or even Gus (Giancarlo Fring), but I’m also so, so excited to see how this particular story ends (even though I technically already know). —Kaitlin Thomas


Resident Evil

Status: New
Network: Netflix
Premiere Date: Thursday, July 14

Even if you’ve never played the Resident Evil video games, which launched in 1996 and are still going strong, chances are you’ve at least heard of the popular zombie franchise. The games have led to countless novels, comic books, and films. The Netflix live-action series takes the living dead in a new direction, following the journey of Jade Wesker, the daughter of Albert Wesker, who fans of the games and movies will certainly remember. The series stars Ella Balinska (Charlie’s Angels) and Lance Reddick (The Wire) in its eight-episode first season, while Andrew Dabb, best known for his work on Supernatural, is the showrunner. Although his previous series is different tonally, hope springs eternal that Dabb will keep the bite the franchise is known for. —Terry Terrones


House of the Dragon

Status: New
Network: HBO
Premiere Date: Sunday, August 21

We’re all going back to Westeros this summer, whether we want to or not. That’s not actually the tagline of House of the Dragon, but it might as well be. HBO’s very expensive Game of Thrones prequel that no one actually asked for (Justice for Brandon the Builder!) is set 200 years before the events of its parent series but will feature even more dragons, even more incest, and lots of Targaryen family strife. The story will depict the infamous inter-family Targaryen civil war known as the Dance of the Dragons that takes place following the death of King Viserys I when his daughter Rhaenyra is passed over for the Iron Throne in favor of her half-brother, Aegon. Come for the solid performers hidden under generally indistinguishable pale blonde wigs (Emma D’Arcy, Matt Smith, Paddy Considine), stay for the many, presumably epic dragon fights. —Lacy Baugher Milas


Mo

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Status: New
Network: Netflix
Premiere Date: Wednesday, August 24

Comedian Mo Amer (Black Adam) has been working comedy circuits around the globe for almost two decades, but the high-profile bumps of opening for Dave Chappelle in 2015 and two huge Netflix comedy specials have catapulted him into mainstream stardom. Now, Amer and Ramy Youssef (Ramy) have co-created the single-camera comedy Mo. The premise is semi-autobiographical, with Amer starring as Mo Najjar, a Palestinian refugee who has relocated to Houston, Texas, with his family. Together, they navigate the many complications of being Muslim in the U.S. If you’ve seen any of Amer’s comedy, his stories about the realities of blending into the American melting pot are hilarious and brutally honest. Seeing his point of view translated into a series, with the help of the considerable talents of Youssef, has all the hallmarks of a late summer sleeper hit. —Tara Bennett



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