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The TV shows we’re eager to see in 2022

Louisa Jacobson (left) and Denée Benton in HBO's "The Gilded Age," a drama from "Downton Abbey" creator Julian Fellowes.ALISON COHEN ROSA

There’s not much that’s absolutely certain about the coming year — we’ve learned that lesson of late. But a massive influx of TV is close to a sure thing for 2022, as the network, cable, and streaming outlets get ready to keep us distracted and, in some cases, dazzled during the pandemic. Here’s a selection of what will be coming our way, both in the next few months and later in the year (their dates to be determined). I’ve included new and returning series, and I’ve focused on both those that appeal to me (“Interview with the Vampire”) and those that may become cultural sensations (“The Lord of the Rings”).



“Somebody Somewhere” Bridget Everett and her big smile star in this semi-autobiographical slice-of-life comedy produced by the Duplass brothers. A bit like the droll “Baskets,” it has our grieving heroine finding her singing voice and connecting with a group of outsider friends in small-town Kansas. (Jan. 16, HBO)

“Ozark” Jason Bateman’s show about an entire family breaking bad returns for the first half of its 14-episode final season, with the Byrdes trying to hide the truth behind the deaths of Wendy’s brother and cartel lawyer Helen. Whatever. Just give us more of Lisa Emery’s Darlene Snell and I’ll be happy. (Jan. 21, Netflix)

“The Gilded Age” An un-prissy HBO version of “Downton Abbey”? This may be the closest we’ll ever get to that. Set in 1880s New York, the drama has writer Julian Fellowes looking at old money on the brink of the modern age. The cast is led by Cynthia Nixon, Christine Baranski, Morgan Spector, Carrie Coon, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Audra McDonald, and Nathan Lane. (Jan. 24, HBO)

Sam Richardson in “The Afterparty,” premiering Jan. 28 on Apple TV+.APPLE TV+

“The Afterparty” If you like your whodunits dipped in comedy, this should hit the spot. It’s about a murder at a high school reunion that shows a different character’s perspective, “Affair”-like, in each episode. The cast features Tiffany Haddish, Sam Richardson, Ilana Glazer, Ben Schwartz, Zoë Chao, Dave Franco, and Ike Barinholtz. (Jan. 28, Apple TV+)


“Pam & Tommy” You know you want to. The miniseries returns us to the Internet’s early days, when a sex tape made by Pam Anderson and Tommy Lee gets leaked to the public. Lily James and Sebastian Stan star as the celeb couple, with Taylor Schilling, Nick Offerman, Seth Rogen, and Andrew Dice Clay in the cast. (Feb. 2, Hulu)

“Suspicion” A new British political thriller? Yes please. Uma Thurman and Noah Emmerich (Stan from “The Americans”) star in this eight-episode kidnapping drama that’s adapted from the Israeli series “False Flag.” (Feb. 4, Apple TV+)

Julia Garner as Anna Delvey in Netflix's "Inventing Anna," premiering Feb. 11.AARON EPSTEIN/NETFLIX

“Inventing Anna” Shonda Rhimes is behind this fact-based miniseries, which means it’ll probably be a hit. It’s about scam artist Anna Delvey, who fooled New York high society by pretending to be a German heiress. Julia Garner stars, with Anna Chlumsky as the New York magazine journalist investigating her. (Feb. 11, Netflix)

“Bel Air” Here’s a high-profile reboot — it’s premiering after the Super Bowl — that will look quite different from its progenitor, “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” A drama, not a sitcom, the hourlong show will follow young Will (Jabari Banks) through the emotional turmoil of his move from West Philadelphia to the gated mansions of LA. (Feb. 13, Peacock)

“Severance” When plot descriptions begin with “In the near future,” as they do with the likes of “Black Mirror,” “Upload,” and “Years and Years,” I’m in. In this sci-fi thriller, a tech company in the near future offers a procedure after which you have no memory of your personal life while at work, and vice versa. Adam Scott, Patricia Arquette, John Turturro, and Christopher Walken star in this ode to compartmentalization. (Feb.18, Apple TV+)


“Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber” This anthology series, set to dig into a different business drama each season, might be a fun ride, since its from the creators of “Billions.” The first season will explore the rise of Uber and the fall of its CEO, Travis Kalanick, played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Also in the cast: Kyle Chandler, Uma Thurman (as Arianna Huffington), and Elisabeth Shue. (Feb. 27, Showtime)

“The Dropout” Talk about timely. Amanda Seyfried (who replaced Kate McKinnon) plays Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes, currently on trial for fraud. We watch her journey from bedazzling billionaire to white-collar baddie, with a cast that includes Naveen Andrews, William H. Macy, Stephen Fry, Laurie Metcalf, Alan Ruck, and Sam Waterston. (March 3, Hulu)

From left: Simone Ashley, Adjoa Andoh, Shelley Conn, and Charithra Chandran in season two of "Bridgerton."LIAM DANIEL/NETFLIX

“Bridgerton” Nope, no Regé-Jean Page this time. But still there will be costume-drama fun afoot as the Shonda Rhimes-produced show takes on the second novel in Julia Quinn’s series. It’s about the oldest Bridgerton sibling, Anthony (Jonathan Bailey), as he looks for a fitting wife. By the way, the series has already been renewed for two additional seasons. (March 25, Netflix)



“The Old Man” Jeff Bridges stars — and that’s always something to look forward to. The actor, whose lymphoma is reportedly in remission, plays a former intelligence officer who is being targeted for assassination. John Lithgow, Amy Brenneman, and Alia Shawkat costar. (TBD, FX)

“Interview with the Vampire” The beloved Anne Rice novel becomes a series (after the 1994 Tom Cruise movie adaptation), and I am very much here for it. Australian actor Sam Reid will play Lestat and Jacob Anderson — who was Grey Worm in “Game of Thrones” — will play Louis. (Summer, AMC)

“The Lord of the Rings” The race is on to be the next “Game of Thrones.” Here’s a contender, arriving 20 years after Peter Jackson’s first movie and set thousands of years before the events of that story. The show is super-duper expensive: For the first eight-episode season, Amazon spent a quarter of a billion dollars on the rights and another $100 million to $150 million on production. But will it be super-duper good? (Sept. 2, Amazon)

Emma D’Arcy as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen and Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen in "House of the Dragon," HBO's "Game of Thrones" prequel.Ollie Upton/HBO

“House of the Dragon” In the running to be the next “Game of Thrones”: The “Game of Thrones” prequel, made by a different creative team and set 200 years before the mothership. The incestuous (and very blond) House Targaryen will be the focus, with a cast including Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, Paddy Considine, and Rhys Ifans. (TBD, HBO)

“The Man Who Fell to Earth” David Bowie starred in the 1976 movie based on Walter Tevis’s 1963 novel. Chiwetel Ejiofor stars in this serialized version of the story, about an alien who comes here to help save his dying planet. Clarke Peters, Jimmi Simpson, Rob Delaney, and Kate Mulgrew also star. (TBD, Showtime)


“Julia” No, not a reboot of the classic Diahann Carroll sitcom. This one’s about TV chef Julia Child, featuring the wonderful Sarah Lancashire (“Last Tango in Halifax,” “Happy Valley”) in the title role. Yup, she’s a Brit. David Hyde Pierce costars, along with Bebe Neuwirth, Isabella Rossellini, Judith Light, and James Cromwell. (TBD, HBO Max)

“We Own This City” “The Wire,” “Treme,” and “The Deuce” alums David Simon and George Pelecanos turn to Justin Fenton’s book about the Baltimore Police Department’s gun trace task force. It stars Treat Williams, Jon Bernthal, and Josh Charles. Warning: The title may trigger a particular Jefferson Starship earworm. (TBD, HBO)


“All Creatures Great and Small” I’m definitely all for a second dose of innocence, beauty, and animal love. (Jan. 9, PBS)

“Euphoria” The story of sex, drugs, friendship, drugs, and drugs in high school returns for season two. (Jan. 9, HBO)

“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” The fourth season, set in 1960, will include guests Kelly Bishop, Milo Ventimiglia, John Waters, and Jason Alexander. (Feb. 18, Amazon)

“Law & Order” Yup, the original is back in town for a 21st season, with returnees Anthony Anderson and Sam Waterston. (Feb. 24, NBC)

“Better Things” Pamela Adlon’s magical slice-of-life comedy is back for its fifth and final season. (Feb. 28, FX)

“Sanditon” The fans prevailed, and the loose Jane Austen adaptation is back for a second season after initially being canceled. (March 20, PBS)

Donald Glover in "Atlanta," which is returning for a third season on FX March 24.Quantrell D. Colbert/Associated Press

“Atlanta” After almost four years, Donald Glover’s inventive series finally returns for season three, which is set during Paper Boi’s first international tour. (March 24, FX)

“The Crown” The third and final set of actors take their places for season five, featuring Imelda Staunton as the queen. (November, Netflix)

“Russian Doll” How can Natasha Lyonne possibly follow up the seemingly self-standing season one? (TBD, Netflix)

Matthew Gilbert can be reached at matthew.gilbert@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @MatthewGilbert.