21 Most Anticipated Shows to Watch in Summer 2023 (2023)

21 Most Anticipated Shows to Watch in Summer 2023 (1)


The traditional TV season goes from September to May, but in the age of the streaming wars there’s no slowdown of new and returning shows during the summer months. The ongoing writers’ strike has slowed or stopped the majority of productions, but those effects won’t begin to be felt until fall or even start of 2024 for the programming slate of most networks and streaming services.

From anticipated new shows like HBO’s “The Idol” and Disney+'s "Secret Invasion" to returning favorites like Hulu’s “The Bear” and Netflix’s “Black Mirror,” TheWrap has your guide to the TV you’ll want to make time for in between laying by the pool and beach day trips. Don’t miss the endless array of drama (Freeform’s “Cruel Summer”), comedy (Max’s “And Just Like That”) and so much more.

Check out TheWrap staff’s picks for the 21 most anticipated shows set for release this summer.

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“The Idol” (HBO) — June 4

We’re not being dramatic when we say “The Idol” is as anticipated as “Don’t Worry Darling.” Just as the rumored feud between Olivia Wilde and Florence Pugh drove film fanatics and tabloid lovers alike to theaters, controversy has enveloped “The Idol” since Rolling Stone reported it has been engulfed in a “sense of chaos,” including production delays, costly reshoots, last-minute script rewrites stunting development — a report that HBO vehemently denied. Co-developed by The Weeknd (née Abel Tesfaye), producing partner Reza Fahim and “Euphoria’s” Sam Levinson, the drama series follows rising pop star Jocelyn (Lily-Rose Depp) as she reclaims her “rightful status as the greatest and sexiest pop star in America,” while leaning on a romance with mysterious nightclub owner Tedros (Tesfaye). From the looks of recent teasers — one of which showcases Tesfaye encouraging Depp to loosen up and enjoy the spotlight during a wild night on the town — viewers will certainly be in for a salacious and twisted ride. — Loree Seitz

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Justine Yeung/Freeform

“Cruel Summer” (Freeform) — June 5

And the saga continues. The next chapter of the “Cruel Summer” anthology will finally debut on Freeform this June, with a fresh cast led by “Kim Possible” star Sadie Stanley, “Little Fires Everywhere” standout Lexi Underwood and “Locke & Key” actor Griffin Gluck. Set in an idyllic town in the Pacific Northwest, the series tracks the early friendship between Megan (Stanley) and Isabella (Underwood), until a love triangle strains their bond and a sinister mystery threatens to ruin all their lives. Stepping into the story from three different timelines beginning in 1999, we are ready for “Cruel Summer” to tug on our heartstrings with Y2K nostalgia. — Loree Seitz

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Patrick McElhenney/FXX

“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” (FXX) — June 7

There’s not much to explain about why you should get excited for a new season of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” — though the long-awaited return of the McPoyles certainly doesn’t hurt. 18 years and 16 seasons in, “It’s Always Sunny” has long transcended and shed any simple labels it may have worn, a la “hidden gem,” “critical darling” or even “modern classic.” At this point, the FXX comedy is operating in a league of its own; the longest-running live-action sitcom, which boasts a singular sturdiness of unflinching comedy and unwavering quality despite nearly two decades’ worth of staggering cultural shift in American comedy. Watching “Always Sunny’s” unmatched run has been a TV highlight for many years at this point, and I hope it continues for just as many more.— Haleigh Foutch

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Bravo Media

“Real Housewives of Orange County” (Bravo) — June 7

"RHOC" brought the big gun back for Season 17: Tamra Judge. True to her last name, the housewife has a quick temper and foul-mouth (she drops just about every profanity in the season's trailer), but she's also fiercely loyal. Also joining the cast this season full-time is Jennifer Pedranti, who is on the receiving end of a lot of gossip — and a napkin aimed at her face. Be on the lookout for some familiar faces: "Real Housewives of Orange County" alum Taylor Armstrong crosses over in a friend role and OC O.G. Vicki Gunvalson makes several guest appearances. — Lawrence Yee

“Never Have I Ever” (Netflix) — June 8

Devi Vishwakumar (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) and co. have one year of high school left, and they are ready to make the most of it. College applications, prom and boys present new challenges for the friend group, with Devi’s dream of getting into Princeton still going strong. She finally slept with Ben Gross (Jaren Lewinson), but the experience hangs over both of them as unresolved. Enter Michael Cimino as Ethan Campos, new bad boy leader of the Hot Pocket, to distract Devi from all her worries. Paxton Hall-Yoshida (Darren Barnett) makes an appearance too even though he graduated last year. A dose of pure young adult chaos awaits in the final season of Mindy Kaling’s and Lang Fisher’s “Never Have I Ever.” — Dessi Gomez

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“Based on a True Story” (Peacock) — June 8

Kaley Cuoco returns in comedic thriller style with Peacock’s “Based on a True Story.” Ava Bartlett (Cuoco) is a true-crime obsessed realtor who encounters an infamous serial killer ravaging Los Angeles. Chris Messina (“Air”) plays Nathan Bartlett and Tom Bateman (“Thirteen Lives”) plays Matt Pierce in the series, commenting on America’s obsession with true crime from a humorous perspective. Additional cast includes Priscilla Quintana (“Good Trouble”) as Ruby Gale, Liana Liberato (“Scream 6”) as Tory Thompson, Natalia Dyer (“Stranger Things”) as Chloe Lake and more. The series comes from creator, showrunner, executive producer and writer Craig Rosenberg (“The Boys,” “Gen V”) and Aggregate Film executive producers Jason Bateman and Michael Costigan. — Dessi Gomez

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Apple TV+

“The Crowded Room” (Apple TV+) — June 9

Tom Holland may be best known for being a superhero at this point, but come June, he’s taking on the exact opposite — maybe. He’ll star opposite “The Dropout” star Amanda Seyfried in “The Crowded Room” on Apple TV+, in which his character, Danny Sullivan, is arrested for a shooting. Seyfried plays Rya Goodwin, an interrogator who manages to get Danny to reveal what led him to the incident, and solves the true crime underneath. From creator Akiva Goldsman, who’s next set to tackle “Constantine 2,” the miniseries also stars Emmy Rossum. Oh, and it’s set in 1979. So, odds are, Holland will have even more groove than usual. You can watch the trailer here. — Andi Ortiz

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“The Wonder Years” (ABC) — June 14

Audiences fell in love with the adventures of Dean Williams (Elisha “EJ” Williams) and his family in this warm ABC comedy series set in 1960s Montgomery, Ala., and inspired by the 1988 show of the same name. We’ve been waiting for more than a year for new episodes, since the show was noticeably moved to the summer after director and executive producer Fred Savage was fired following an investigation into misconduct allegations. Not much is known about where the show will go next, but music legend Patti LaBelle is set to appear in two episodes in the role of Bill Williams’ mother, Shirley Williams. — Jose Alejandro Bastidas

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“Outlander” — June 16

Jamie and Claire’s epic love story will never end — or at least not for another season. Picking up from Season 6’s cliffhanger finale, the seventh installment will see Jamie (Sam Heughan) and Ian (John Bell) trying to rescue Claire (Caitríona Balfe) from being tried for the murder of Malva Christie. There’s just one catch: their efforts come in the midst of the American Revolution. As the couple attempts to keep their family together, they must face the decision to concede their comfort as war engulfs their home. — Loree Seitz

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Peter Kramer/AMC

“The Walking Dead: Dead City” (AMC) — June 18

The "Walking Dead" meets "Escape From New York" in this six-episode spin-off following the unlikely team of Maggie (Lauren Cohen) and Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), as they head to a post-apocalyptic Manhattan in search of her kidnapped son, Hershel. In case you forgot, Negan brutally beat Maggie's husband Glenn (Steven Yeun) to death in front of her in Season 7 of the original AMC series, so they're not exactly besties. Along for the ride are Gaius Charles of "Friday Night Lights and Grey's Anatomy" and Željko Ivanek of "Damages" and "Madam Secretary," as well as Jonathan Higginbotham, Mahina Napoleon, Trey Santiago-Hudson, Charlie Solis and Michael Anthony. Watch the trailer here. — Sharon Knolle

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Marvel Studios

“Secret Invasion” (Disney+) — June 21

The last Marvel Studios streaming series was “She-Hulk: Attorney at Law” last fall – a smart, snappy, self-referential lawyer comedy starring Tatiana Maslany. It’s a testament to the variety and playability of the Marvel shows that the latest series is so different. Described as a claustrophobic conspiracy thriller, “Secret Invasion” borrows the name from the crossover comic book event where your favorite heroes were undermined by Skrull sleeper agents (with some of them revealed to be doppelgängers all this time). Considering this is a show and not an epic team-up movie, the scale is considerably smaller but the stakes just as high, with Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson), a pivotal character who has been sidelined for the last few movies, teaming up with Talos (Ben Mendelsohn) to stop the infiltration. (“Peaky Blinders” star Kingsley Ben-Adir plays the leader of the baddies.) Several familiar faces from the MCU, including Don Cheadle, Martin Freeman and Cobie Smulders are all returning to the fray, joined by newcomers like Emilia Clarke, Dermot Mulroney and Oscar-winner Olivia Colman, as a flinty British secret agent. We’re in. Watch the trailer here. — Drew Taylor

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“The Bear” (Hulu) — June 22

Yes, chef! Carmy (Jeremy Allen White) and his friends are back with Season 2 of Hulu’s “The Bear,” and fans are more than ready for a second helping. Thanks to the money they found squirreled away by Carmy’s brother Mikey (Jon Bernthal) — in several cans of tomato paste, which made for a sloppy, but very fun closing scene in the Season 1 finale — the gang is now able to live up to the name of the show and open “The Bear,” a brand new restaurant to replace “The Original Beef.” And, now that Carmy and Sydney (Ayo Edebiri) have worked out their personal beef, he’ll be able to help her become the chef she hopes to become. Of course, Jeremy Allen White isn’t totally sure Carmy’s ready to be a mentor yet, so the 10-episode second season should be just as chaotic, delicious and emotional as the first. — Andi Ortiz

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“And Just Like That” (Max) — June 22

After breaking the internet with an explosively divisive first season, the second installment of Max’s “Sex and the City” reboot promises a return to form — and more Che Diaz (Sara Ramirez). Season 1 reunited Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) for another chapter in their lives in New York City, along with a variety of new faces making up for the massive absence of Kim Cattrall’s Samantha Jones. While Carrie spent Season 1 mourning the loss of her big love Big (Chris Noth), the new episodes will mark a fresh start for the show and its characters — though there’ll still be plenty of nostalgia with the return of John Corbett’s Aidan. We’re anxiously awaiting the mess to come. — Jose Alejandro Bastidas

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Prime Video

“I’m a Virgo” (Prime Video) — June 23

With “Sorry to Bother You,” Boots Riley broke the minds of Hollywood with his middle finger to capitalism. Now Riley is back with a seven-part absurdist comedy for Amazon’s Prime Video. Starring Jharrel Jerome, “I’m a Virgo” revolves around a 13-foot-tall 19-year-old Black man who experiences life outside his parents’ home for the first time. And that’s the most normal part of this upcoming series. Also starring Mike Epps, Carmen Ejogo, Walton Goggins and Brett Gray, this ambitious, unapologetically political and twisting ride was executive produced by Riley, Jerome, Tze Chun, Michael Ellenburg, Adam Merims and Lindsey Springer. Whatever you were expecting in your wildest dreams, prepare to be surprised. — Kayla Cobb

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Apple TV+

Hijack (Apple TV+) — June 28

Idris Elba stars and executive-produces this seven-part thriller that plays out in real time as a London-bound flight is hijacked. Elba plays Sam Nelson, an accomplished business negotiator who tries to employ his skills to save the passengers’ lives. Emmy winner Archie Panjabi plays Zahra Gahfoor, a counterterrorism officer on the ground who also scrambles to save lives. The series is created by George Kay and Jim Field Smith, who previously teamed on the Netflix series “Criminal.” Kay, one of the co-creators of “Lupin,” also wrote while Smith directs. — Sharon Knolle

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“Black Mirror” (Netflix) — June TBD

It’s been four years since “Black Mirror” last unleashed its techno-torment on the world, and a whole lot has changed. In the “before times,” it seemed as if the world had, horrific as it was to admit, pretty much caught up with a lot of what “Black Mirror” had to say in the near-decade since its first episodes debuted on Channel 4. But the last four years fundamentally changed the texture of our relationship to technology and the balance of our economy, with their pandemic-forced Zoom reliance, workforce shift toward remote employment and sudden popular rise of AI (not to mention the would-be rise and instant fall of the Metaverse). Which is all to say that “Black Mirror” Season 6 has much to work with and plenty of newly-forged fears to prey upon, all with the help of a wildly stacked cast that includes Aaron Paul, Salma Hayek-Pinault, Annie Murphy, Ben Barnes, Michael Cera, Myha’la Herrold and Zazie Beetz. — Haleigh Foutch

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Prime Video

“The Summer I Turned Pretty” (Prime Video) — July 14

Season 2 of the show, adapted from Jenny Han’s “The Summer I Turned Pretty” trilogy, makes a splash with the first three episodes premiering July 14. The rest will roll out weekly on Fridays. Each of the episodes has love in the title, and the Cousins Beach crew is mostly back, with new additions Elsie Fisher and Kyra Sedgwick. Belly Conklin (Lola Tung) and her love triangle between Conrad (Christopher Briney) and Jeremiah Fisher (Gavin Casalegno) face new levels of challenges, set to what has to be another brilliant soundtrack. It can’t be a coincidence that Jenny Han’s announcement video featuring the cast *with Lola and Chris wearing purple* came out the same day as Taylor Swift’s announcement for the rerecording of “Speak Now,” which will release a week before the show premieres. We’re calling it now that one or two songs from “Speak Now (Taylor’s Version)” will find their way into “The Summer I Turned Pretty.” — Dessi Gomez

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Apple TV+

The Afterparty(Apple TV+) — July 12

“The Afterparty,” the ingenious, genre-bending murder mystery (and one of the very best Apple TV+ shows around), is back for season 2. Sam Richardson (as Aniq) and Zoë Chao (as Zoë) are back, along with Tiffany Haddish (as the dogged detective Danner), with the murder happening at a wedding that Aniq and Zoë are attending. This year, the list of potential suspects (or victims!) includes Elizabeth Perkins, Zach Woods, Paul Walter Hauser, Poppy Liu, Jack Whitehall, Vivian Wu, Ken Jeong and John Cho. It’s unclear what film genres the season will be adopting; though with two more episodes than Season 1, they can expand their scope a little bit more. And considering creator Christopher Miller and his creative partner/executive producer Phil Lord have an extensive background in animation, our bet is there’ll be another animated episode (maybe stop motion?) But that’s just a guess. If you never watched this cheerily inventive comedy/thriller, time to catch up before Season 2 rolls around. It’s the best. —Drew Taylor

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Lionsgate Television

“Minx” (Starz) — July 21

Few shows have had a more chaotic road to Season 2 than Ellen Rapoport’s “Minx.” The series about a feminist porno magazine in the 1970s originally debuted on HBO Max as one of the streaming service’s original series. It was then axed last fall as one of the casualties in Warner Bros. Discovery’s mass removal of content before it was saved by Starz. Now viewers can continue to appreciate the work-spouse, work-enemy relationship of Ophelia Lovibond’s Joyce and Jake Johnson’s Doug. Funny and sharp, “Minx” holds back nothing when it comes to depicting the naked truth of the seedy side of the magazine industry — and we do mean nothing. — Kayla Cobb

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“Only Murders in the Building” (Hulu) — Aug. 8

Hulu’s favorite trio of podcasters and true crime enthusiasts are returning to the Arconia this summer for a third season of the Emmy award-winning series. After solving the murder of Tim Kono (Julian Cihi) in Season 1 and clearing their names by uncovering Bunny Folger’s (Jayne Houdyshell) killer in Season 2, Charles Haden-Savage (Steve Martin), Oliver Putnam (Martin Short) and Mabel Mora (Selena Gomez) are back to solve yet another mystery — this time at a Broadway theater. Martin, Short and Gomez will be joined this season by special A-list guest stars Paul Rudd and Meryl Streep. While many details about the season still remain under wraps, fans can expect twists and turns, laughs and — at some point — wedding attire! — Lucas Manfredi

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“Painkiller” (Netflix) — Aug. 10

Based on the book of the same name by Barry Meier as well as Patrick Radden Keefe’s article in the New Yorker titled “The Family That Built the Empire of Pain,” Netflix’s newest series “Painkiller” will give a face to the countless number of Americans impacted by the opioid crisis. The fictional retelling of events will debut in a six-part limited series starring Uzo Aduba, Matthew Broderick, Taylor Kitsch, Dina Shihabi, John Rothman and West Duchovny. As Radden Keefe’s article exposed the Sackler Dynasty’s pivotal role in the opioid epidemic, the series will explore the systems that have failed to protect Americans for decades. — Loree Seitz

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