To help boost your must-see #TV list to to the next level, take a look at these new and returning shows airing over the next few months that are sure to be required viewing for fans of these fantastic genres.
1. The Expanse
- Airs: Syfy, Wednesdays 10 PM EST
- Premiere: February 1st (Season 2)
- Starring: Thomas Jane, Steven Strait, Cas Anvar, Dominique Tipper
What's It About? Based on the novels by James S.A. Cory, this space saga takes place 200 years in the future when humans have colonized the solar system and the powers that control Earth, Mars and the the Asteroid Belt find themselves struggling to coexist peacefully. In the midst of this political quagmire, the survivors of a destroyed ice freighter and one "Belter" cop investigating a girl's disappearance are thrown together in a conspiracy to shift the balance of power in the solar system.
Why Watch It? This show may not have been a big breakout hit in its first season, but it delivered the space epic so many sci fi fans have been clamoring for, and it has developed some good word-of-mouth since its first season began. It's vying to carry on the tradition of beloved #Syfy shows such as Battlestar: Galactica, Stargate, and Farscape, and could find itself in that class if it keeps up the quality of its first season. Season 1 is available for streaming on Amazon and is included with their Prime service for those wanting to catch up before the season 2 begins.
- Airs: FX, Wednesdays 10 PM EST
- Premiere: February 8th
- Starring: Dan Stevens, Rachel Keller, Jean Smart, Aubrey Plaza
What's It About? The latest superhero series on television spins out of the #XMen franchise and focuses on the Mutant known as Legion. Originating in the New Mutants comic book back in the 80's, #Legion is the son of Charles Xavier and he has multiple personalities, each with their own powers.
Why Watch It? It will be good to finally get an X-Men related, live-action series on television and the early previews definitely make this one look promising. It's not yet known how closely the series will follow the character's comic book origins, but the rumor is that Professor Xavier and possibly other mutants will be showing up in the series as it exists in the same universe as the movies.
3. Iron First
- Airs: Netflix, Streaming
- Premiere: March 17th
- Starring: Finn Jones, Jessica Henwick, David Wenham, Rosario Dawson
What's It About? This is the fourth solo entry in Netflix's Defenders series of shows (following Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and Luke Cage) and it focuses on the titular hero who is a master of martial arts and also controls the mystical power known as the "iron fist".
Why Watch It? The other three #Defenders series have all kicked butt, so there's no reason not to expect the same from this one. Netflix has delivered some of the best superhero stories in the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe (#MCU). Plus, #IronFist leads into the upcoming team-up series that will air later in 2017.
4. Emerald City
- Airs: NBC, Fridays 9 PM EST
- Premiere: January 6th
- Starring: Adria Arjona, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Ana Ularu, Vincent D'Onofrio
What's It About? In this re-imagining of the Wizard of the Oz mythology, a modern-day Dorothy finds herself carried over a much darker rainbow where she finds herself in the middle of a power struggle raging throughout the fantasy land.
Why Watch It? This one has been billed as Game of Thrones meets Oz and looks like it could deliver some good fantasy/steampunk fun. Plus, Vincent D'Onofrio (Daredevil's Kingpin) plays Oz! #EmeraldCity is getting that dreaded "event series" tag, so it's uncertain if future seasons are planned at this point. However, it should be fun while it lasts.
- Airs: USA, Thursdays 10 PM EST
- Premiere: January 12th (Season 2)
- Starring: Josh Holloway, Sarah Wayne Callies, Peter Jacobson, Amanda Righetti
What's It About? In the near future, aliens have taken over the earth and cordoned off most of the major cities. The series focuses on ex-Army Ranger Will Bowman and his wife Katie as they must make difficult choices to keep their family safe while also resisting the occupation.
Why Watch It? This series, from #Lost alum Carlton Cuse, started out its first year as somewhat of a slow burn, but began to develop into a decent ,and at times challenging, sci fi entry as it progressed. If it continues to build on that momentum, it could turn into a must-watch show. The first season is available on Netflix for those who want to catch up before the second year debuts.
6. The Magicians
- Airs: Syfy, Wednesdays 9 PM EST
- Premiere: January 25th (Season 2)
- Starring: Jason Ralph, Stella Maeve, Olivia Taylor Dudley, Hale Appleman
What's It About? This fantasy show based on the book series by Lev Grossman follows the students of Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy who learn to use their magical powers while also dealing with mystical threats that challenge their abilities.
Why Watch It? For those who may have given up on Syfy during its "sci fi lite" stage that began with its name change in 2009, the former Sci Fi Channel has really upped its game of late. Over the last couple of years, that network has given us such worthwhile genre entries as #TheExpanse, the Childhood's End mini-series, 12 Monkeys, Killjoys, Dark Matter and more. Add to that list #TheMagicians, which is much more than the Harry-Potter-Goes-to-College label it has unfairly been given. This show has exceeded expectations and delivered a very good entry to the fantasy genre.
7. Into the Badlands
- Airs: AMC, Sundays 9 PM EST (Tentative)
- Premiere: March
- Starring: Daniel Wu, Orla Brady, Sarah Bolger, Aramis Knight
What's It About? In this post-apocalyptic martial arts series, Sunny is the regent and protector to one of the seven barons in the lands, but must choose between loyalty to his leader and ties with the past.
Why Watch It? Consider this over-the-top series very much a guilty pleasure, but its stylized visuals, feudal post-apocalyptic setting, and no-holds-barred martial arts sequences definitely make it worth checking out. Its return is tentatively set for March.
Other Shows of Note
#The100 returns for its fourth season on February 1st, and it appears the post-apocalypse they have been dealing with could be taking a turn for the worse. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. quietly delivered its best season so far this fall and looks to continue that momentum when it returns from hiatus on January 10th. Syfy's Channel Zero delivered a creepy and engaging first season with its "Candle Cove" story line and will be returning at some point in the next few months with the "No-End House" arc. Plus, The CW's superhero shows have all been having their best seasons as well (especially #TheFlash and Legends of Tomorrow). They'll definitely be worth checking out when they return from hiatus in January.
What sci fi and fantasy shows are you most looking forward to over the next few months?