We might not be fully confined to the indoors anymore, but booting up a TV show on a sweltering summer day is never the wrong choice. Whether delayed because of COVID-19 or filmed safely during the pandemic, our favorite TV shows and new stories are here to keep summer cool. From the twisted world of Stephen King with Lisey’s Story to the small-screen debut of Blindspotting to sitcom subversion in Kevin Can F**k Himself and musical stylings of Central Park and Schmigadoon! the next few months of TV premieres promise nonstop entertainment.
Here are 13 summer TV shows we can’t wait to watch.
1. Lisey’s Story, June 4
Stephen King’s works have been adapted for television and film hundreds of times, but only a handful of those adaptations can boast being written by King himself. Lisey’s Story joins their ranks as a miniseries based on King’s book of the same name, which the author has described as his favorite story he has written. In the book and show, Lisey Landon (Julianne Moore) is a widow whose husband Scott (Clive Owen) was a famous thriller author. After her husband’s death, she is haunted by his memory and hounded by a deranged fan (Dane DeHaan) who wants access to his papers in search of lost or unpublished work. –Alexis Nedd, Senior Entertainment Reporter
How to watch: Lisey’s Story premieres June 4 on Apple TV+.
2. Sweet Tooth, June 4
In an entertainment landscape rife with comic book movies and shows, the phrase “post-apocalyptic comic book adaptation” might elicit a few groans. Sweet Tooth, which is adapted from Jeff Lemire’s comic series of the same name, is an adaptation unlike any we’ve seen before. It takes place a decade after a devastating virus destroyed civilization in a global catastrophe that coincided with all human births resulting in persecuted human-animal hybrids. Sweet Tooth follows a deer-boy hybrid named Gus, whose journey into the world is a heartbreakingly lovely examination of the worst (and best) humanity has to offer. –A.N.
How to watch: Sweet Tooth premieres June 4 on Netflix.
3. Loki, June 9
In The Avengers, Loki came to earth proclaiming he was burdened with glorious purpose. Loki the TV series might just give him the purpose he craved. As with previous Disney+ shows, Marvel is playing this one close to the chest, but trailers confirm that Loki follows the time-displaced “variant” of Loki created when the Avengers accidentally gave him an opening to escape his canon fate in the Avengers: Endgame time heist. He is then captured by the Time Variance Authority (basically time cops) and pressured into using his powers to correct the timeline he and others may have messed with. Glorious purpose indeed. –A.N.
How to watch: Loki premieres June 9 on Disney+.
4. Love, Victor Season 2, June 11
Season 2 of this endearing under-the-radar series picks up with Victor (Michael Cimino) coming out to his parents and classmates, living a life in sharp contrast to his journey out of the closet in Season 1. But coming out comes with its own baggage; Victor’s mom doesn’t know how to support him, and kids can be cruel to those who are different, even at the best of times. Love, Victor takes places in the same world as Love, Simon (based on the novel by Becky Albertalli), and Season 2 takes Victor’s journey beyond what Simon experienced on both page and screen. The charming ensemble reunites, showing us and Victor that strength comes from our loved ones — romantic or otherwise. –Proma Khosla, Entertainment Reporter
How to watch: Love, Victor premieres June 11 on Hulu.
5. Kevin Can F*ck Himself, June 13
If you’ve ever felt bad for the put-upon wives of sitcoms like Kevin Can Wait, King of Queens, and other comedies not starring Kevin James, Kevin Can F**K Himself is for you. Annie Murphy (Schitt’s Creek) stars as Allison, who’s reached a breaking point in her marriage to self-absorbed man-child Kevin (Eric Peterson) and sets out to regain control of her life by any means necessary — perhaps up to and including murder. Switching between a classic multi-cam format (complete with laugh track) and an icier crime drama aesthetic to highlight the contrast between Kevin’s perspective and Allison’s, Kevin Can F**K Himself gives two middle fingers to the toxic tropes that have relegated women to the sidelines of their own stories for far too long. – Angie Han, Deputy Entertainment Editor
How to watch: Kevin Can F**k Himself premieres June 13 on AMC.
6. Tuca & Bertie Season 2, June 13
When Lisa Hanawalt’s Tuca & Bertie was cancelled after one incredible season on Netflix, fans of its irreverent, female-led animated storytelling were devastated. Thankfully, hope came in the form of a Season 2 pickup on Adult Swim, where the world’s most anxious thrush and flightiest toucan will live on. Times were changing for Tuca, Bertie, Freckle, and even Draca the plant at the end of Season 1, so Season 2 should pick up their story of what it feels like to grow up, make up, and, you know, be bird-people in the Bird Town metropolitan area.
How to watch: Tuca & Bertie premieres June 13 on Adult Swim.
7. Blindspotting, June 13
Note: You do not have to have seen the 2018 film Blindspotting starring Daveed Diggs to understand Blindspotting, the new Starz show that acts as a spinoff to the movie. Diggs does not appear in this show (though he does executive produce), and the spinoff follows the story of Jasmine Cephas Jones’ character Ashley who is on her own groovy thing. When Ashley’s boyfriend Miles (Rafael Casal) gets arrested, she has to move in with Trish Miles’ hippy mother Rainey (Helen Hunt) and his…assertive sister Trish while parenting her young son in Oakland, California. Ashley and other characters in Blindspotting experience pivotal moments as non-diegetic rhythmic moments that involve spoken word poetry, rap, and contemporary dance. –A.N.
How to watch: Blindspotting premieres June 13 on Starz.
8. Central Park Season 2, June 25
Loren Bouchard, Josh Gad, Nora Smith’s musical comedy about the family who owns Central Park is back with more incredible songs, star-studded cameos, and outdoor shenanigans in Manhattan’s biggest playground. Emmy Raver-Lampman takes over the role of Molly as the Tillermans continue to protect their home from Bitsy Brandenham (Stanley Tucci), who wants to destroy the park and turn it into a real estate development. – P.K.
How to watch: Central Park Season 2 premieres June 25 on Apple TV+.
9. Schmigadoon! (Apple TV+), July 16
For all those who like their TV with an extra helping of theatrical sparkle, Apple TV+’s Schmigadoon! will arrive this July. With a cast including Broadway superstars like Aaron Tveit, Ann Harada, Kristen Chenowith, and Alan Cumming as well as Jane Krakowski and Keegan Michael-Key, Schmigadoon! is about a pair of normies who accidentally make their way to a magical town where everyone behaves like they’re living in a musical. Is that not the dream? For theater kids it’s definitely the dream. –A.N.
How to watch: Schmigadoon! premieres July 16 on Apple TV+.
10. Ted Lasso Season 2, July 23
We may not have expected Apple’s fish-out-of water comedy about an American soccer coach in the U.K. to completely steal our hearts, but what a joy it was. Ted (Jason Sudeikis) returns for a second season with Richmond, now fully united with club owner Rebecca (Hannah Waddingham) after her Season 1 attempts at subterfuge. The team might be tied, “unlucky, and consulting with a sports psychologist, but if there’s one thing we learned from Coach Lasso, it’s how to believe. –P.K.
How to watch: Ted Lasso Season 2 premieres July 23 on Apple TV+.
11. Gossip Girl, July TBD
It’s hard to remember now, but the original Gossip Girl was a cultural reset. The scandalous lives of Manhattan’s elite influenced 00s fashion, slang, and led to the careers of some of today’s brightest stars. Now HBO Max wants to do it all over again. Original creative team Joshua Safran, Josh Schwartz, and Stephanie Savage return to executive produce a soft reboot that picks up the story of the super-rich Upper East Side teens of today, and they just might be as riveting as the OG adventures of Blair, Serena, Dan, and Chuck. Tune in to find out. XOXO, Gossip Girl. –A.N.
How to watch: Gossip Girl premieres in July on HBO Max.
12. Never Have I Ever Season 2, July TBD
Devi (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) is on better terms than ever with her mother (Poorna Jagannathan), but still dreading the family’s move to India. It doesn’t help that “things were just getting good” for Devi — she reconciled with her best friends and kissed not one but two crushes! Now Devi has a month left in the U.S. and faces the possibility of juggling two boys while the clock runs out. John McEnroe returns as narrator, with Common joining the cast as Nalini’s work nemesis. –P.K.
How to watch: Never Have I Ever Season 2 premieres in July on Netflix.
13. Heels, August 15
Loki creator Michael Waldron has another show on the docket this summer, with this independent wrestling drama starring Robbie Amell and Alexander Ludwig. Jack and Ace Spade are brothers with wrestling in their blood and embedded in their community. The title refers to wrestling villains, known as heels — and the blurring lines between reality and the ring as the boys fight over their family legacy and more. –P.K.
How to watch: Heels premieres August 15 on Starz.