The Best TV Shows of 2024 (So Far)

It’s time for a mid-year check-in. Here are the 2024 TV shows you’ll want to watch.

“SHOGUN” -- "A Dream of a Dream" -- Episode 10 (Airs April 23) Pictured (L-R): Cosmo Jarvis as John Blackthorne, Moeka Hoshi as Usami Fuji.
Photo: Katie Yu | FX

The TV years are just flying by at this point. For some of us, it feels like only yesterday we were watching Succession take home precisely every award at the 75th Primetime Emmy Awards. For others, yesterday might as well have been the airing of the Red Wedding on Game of Thrones. And for some incomprehensibly ancient creatures, we … I mean they fondly recall watching the Lost finale in their college dorm. The point is that things move fast on television. If you don’t slow down for a minute, you might miss all of it.

So let’s slow down to appreciate the best TV has had to offer in 2024 so far. From stunning new miniseries dramas like FX’s Shōgun to unexpected animated delights like Disney+’s X-Men ‘97 to reliable comedies like Max’s Hacks, there was plenty to love this year. To be eligible, a show must have aired more than half of its episodes in 2024 (which is why you won’t see the superb Fargo season 5). It also must primarily be a U.S.-production (which is why you won’t see Baby Reindeer, but you can find it our Best British TV Show list over here). Now sit back, relax, and reflect upon the TV year so far.

Honorable Mentions: True Detective: Night Country, Knuckles, Sugar, Griselda, Tokyo Vice Season 2, The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live, Under the Bridge, Conan O’Brien Must Go, Girls5eva Season 3, The Sympathizer

3 Body Problem. Zine Tseng as Young Ye Wenjie in episode 102 of 3 Body Problem.

3 Body Problem

Available on: Netflix (U.S. and U.K.)

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Since Star Wars first premiered in 1977, the science fiction genre has increasingly come to be associated with action and adventure more than hard science. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, of course! But the real heady, Asimov-ian stuff has had a hard time gaining a foothold in pop culture. That’s why it’s so remarkable that 3 Body Problem, Netflix’s biggest genre swing of the year thus far, is full on hard sci-fi.

That’s not to say that 3 Body Problem, based on a trilogy of Mandarin-language novels from Liu Cixin, doesn’t have its kinetic moments. In fact, the series includes one of the most thrilling and violent action sequences of the year. But more often than not, 3 Body Problem’s lead characters of scientists, government agents, and all-around problem-solvers are primarily engaged with tackling the mathematical and sociopolitical questions raised by the central three-body problem. Oh and there are aliens! – Alec Bojalad

Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington, sitting on her bed with a quill in hand in episode 306 of Bridgerton

Bridgerton Season 3

Available on: Netflix (U.S. and U.K.)

Though it’s hard to beat the steamy chemistry of season 2’s couple Kate (Simone Ashley) and Anthony Bridgerton (Jonathan Bailey), Penelope (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin (Luke Newton) are certainly giving them a run for their money this season. With the added tension of Penelope’s secret identity as the ton’s lead gossip Lady Whistledown, their friends-to-lovers story is full of compelling conflict made even richer by their long history.

The side plots woven throughout their blossoming romance are also worthy of note, with Francesca (Hannah Dodd) and Violet (Ruth Gemmell) finding potential love matches of their own. Cressida Cowper (Jessica Madsen) is also eager to avoid being married off to a man three times her age, leading her to make some…interesting choices. Really my only complaint about season 3 is that there’s not more of it. – Brynna Arens

Ellia English, Larry David, and Keyla Monterroso Mejia in Curb Your Enthusiasm season 12 episode 1.

Curb Your Enthusiasm Season 12

Available on: Max (U.S.)

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You only get one shot at an ending. Unless, of course, you are Seinfeld and Curb Your Enthusiasm creator Larry David. The final season of Curb Your Enthusiasm works so well because it never once hides where it’s going. Even the most casual fan can sense what the series is building up to – a do-over of the reviled Seinfeld finale that David penned – but that doesn’t make the journey any less pleasant.

David has his cake and eats it too this time around. Season 12 operates as both a collection of solid Curb episodes and a series of goodbyes for the “characters” we’ve come to cringe at so much. By the time you get to the finale, you’re equal parts excited to see how David atones for endings past and confident that he’s going to get the job done. – AB

Lucy (Ella Purnell) looks exhausted in a post-apocalyptic wasteland in Amazon Prime Video's Fallout


Available on: Prime Video (U.S. and U.K.)

Whether you’re a fan of the video game series or going into the series almost totally blind (like me), Fallout is a delight to watch. The lore is never so overwhelming that it’s hard to follow nor does the rich worldbuilding taking place ever suffer from things being watered down to be more palatable. The world of Fallout is set in the future, after a nuclear apocalypse has ravaged the planet and left a lawless wasteland in its wake. Somehow, humanity has survived it all, but so many remnants of the old world like religious totalitarianism and corporate greed manage to survive as well, making the mistakes of the past a lot harder to escape.

The show manages to capture the essence of the games while still telling a wholly new story led by complicated characters. Lucy (Ella Purnell), a naive vault-dweller who sneaks to the surface in search of her father. Maximus (Aaron Moten) a devout squire of the Brotherhood of Steel sent on an important mission. And the Ghoul (Walton Goggins), formerly actor Cooper Howard, a fierce gunslinger who has wandered the wasteland for 200 years in search of his family, and somehow still looks hot. Their eventual alliance may be a tenuous one, but as the truth about the mysterious company Vault-Tec comes to light, it becomes crucial to their survival. – BA

Deborah Vance (Jean Smart) in Hacks season 3

Hacks Season 3

Available on: Max (U.S.)

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Hacks is one of the most reliable comedies on television. Through its first two seasons, you could practically set your watch to this Max series being both an extremely funny take on aging in the entertainment industry and the oddly affecting depiction of a codependent relationship between two women. The show’s third installment, however, might just be its best.

Hacks season 3 takes everything that already works about the show and cranks it up to new levels. At the center of it all are the remarkable performances of leads Jean Smart and Hannah Einbinder as comedy superstar Deborah Vance and her young writer Ava Daniels. Alone, each performance is among the best in the medium. Together, they are a nuclear bomb of charm, tension, and pathos. – AB

Jacob Anderson as Louis De Point Du Lac and Delainey Hayles as Claudia - Interview with the Vampire _ Season 2, Episode 2

Interview with the Vampire Season 2

Available on: AMC+ (U.S.)

Interview with the Vampire has managed to avoid the infamous “sophomore slump” in its second season and is as compelling in its tale of the vampire Louis (Jacob Anderson) as ever. Even with the exit of Bailey Bass as Claudia, Delainy Hayles is proving to be just as effervescent in the role, portraying Claudia’s growing loneliness and sadness with deft precision. Lestat (Sam Reid) is very much still a commanding presence in the show as Louis deals with the guilt of both trying to kill him and not making sure the job was finished. Armand (Assad Zaman), however, is quickly proving to be just as formidable a presence, though a lot more understated. The series has become even more adept at weaving its threads between the past and the present to tell the story of Louis’ life, and we can’t wait to see where it goes from here. – BA

Mark Grayson (Steven Yeun) in Invincible season 2

Invincible Season 2

Available on: Prime Video (U.S. and U.K.)

Though the momentum of Invincible’s impeccable first season was somewhat waylaid by this season’s split into two parts, season two of the series has still proven to be one of the best shows of this year. After the shocking revelation of Nolan’s (J.K. Simmons) true intentions for Earth, Mark (Steven Yeun) not only has to contend with the aftermath of losing who he thought his father was, but also with how to continue his life as normal. But as Mark soon learns, life as a superhero is rarely ever normal.

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From parasitic alien hive minds to an impending Viltrumite invasion to discovering his father’s secret alien love child, Mark does not have any easy go of it this season. And on top of it all, he tries to start college and maintain his relationship with Amber (Zazie Beetz). This season may not end with as jaw-dropping of a reveal as the previous one, but the storytelling, acting, and art of Invincible continues to be top-notch. – BA

John Carpenter, John Mulaney at John Mulaney Presents: Everybody’s in LA for the Netflix is a Joke Festival at The Sunset Gower Studios on May 10, 2024 in Los Angeles, CA. Cr. Adam Rose/Netflix © 2024

John Mulaney Presents: Everybody’s in L.A.

Available on: Netflix (U.S. and U.K.)

In addition to all the brilliant joke-writing and quick-thinking improvisational skills, comedian John Mulaney’s best weapon has always been his taste. Despite being only a hair over 41 years old, the former SNL writer has a deep appreciation for the classics. Like Lenny Bruce, he wears suits for his standup specials. Like nearly every comic from the ‘80s and ‘90s, his first attempt at a scripted TV series was a multi-camera sitcom with a laugh track. Now, with this year’s John Mulaney Presents Everybody’s in L.A., he finally gets to live out his Johnny Carson Tonight Show dreams.

Everybody’s in L.A. was short-lived but it burned brightly. The premise for the show was that, if every major comedian was going to be in Los Angeles for Netflix’s comedy festival Netflix is a Joke, then there should be a Netflix-hosted, L.A.-based talk show for them all to drop by. The simplicity of Everybody’s in L.A.’s setup belies just how well-written and funny this whole thing was, even over its scant six episodes. Mulaney blended his usual smart comedy with chaotic celebrity interviews, Los Angeles history lessons, and a Richard Kind as a sidetick to giggle throughout the whole thing. – AB

Austin Butler in "Masters of the Air," now streaming on Apple TV+.

Masters of the Air 

Available on: Apple TV+ (U.S. and U.K.)

Apple TV+’s epic World War II series Masters of the Air was a risky venture. This nine-episode effort came with a big price tag and even bigger legacy to live up as the spiritual companion to Band of Brothers and The Pacific – both WWII miniseries from producers Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks. When you add in that production had to endure COVID lockdowns, Masters of the Air had every right to be a dud. But it wasn’t a dud. It was thrilling television and a worthy followup to its forefathers. 

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Austin Butler and Callum Turner shine as U.S. bombers “Buck” Cleven and “Bucky” Egan. This was much more than a two-hander, however, as the expectedly expansive cast captured 100th Bomb Group’s terrifying experiences in the war that led to it being known as the “Bloody Hundredth.” While striving for the same realism as Band of Brothers and The Pacific, Masters of the Air’s high-flying aerial battles made for some of the most intense action sequences you’ll see on TV this year or any other. – AB

Maya Erskine and Donald Glover in Mr. and Mrs. Smith

Mr. and Mrs. Smith

Available on: Prime Video (U.S. and U.K)

Taking a premise that has not only been done once, but twice before and making it something fresh and exciting is no small undertaking. And yet Donald Glover and Francesca Sloane have managed to not only make a version of Mr. and Mrs. Smith that’s new and fun – their version has left us wanting so much more.

Donald Glover and Maya Erskine’s chemistry as the titular Mr. and Mrs. Smith is electric, in both the series’ serious and more comedic moments. The generic presentation of the spy organization they work for only adds to the mystery of it all, and further emphasizes that John and Jane don’t have many allegiances beyond themselves. It all makes for an addictive, gripping spy series that proves Glover and Sloane aren’t running out of steam as a creative duo anytime soon. – BA

“SHOGUN” -- "A Stick of Time" -- Episode 7 (Airs April 2) Pictured: Hiroyuki Sanada as Yoshii Toranaga.


Available on: Hulu (U.S.), Disney+ (U.K.)

It didn’t take long for Shōgun to become one of the most talked-about shows of the year, nor is any of its praise unwarranted. Though many have been quick to compare the show’s gripping drama and political intrigue to Game of Thrones, I would argue that Shōgun is even better. Set in 1600s Japan, Shōgun follows Lord Toranaga (Hiroyuki Sanada) and his alliance with an English pilot, John Blackthorne (Cosmo Jarvis), as several powers vie for control of Japan’s future.

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The cast is incredible, from Hiroyuki Sanada’s calculating Lord Toranaga to Anna Sawai’s strong and loyal Mariko to Cosmo Jarvis’ fish-out-of-water John Blackthorne and every character in between. There is not a single performance in this show that isn’t worthy of praise. While this story may be about men’s struggle for power on the surface, the heart of the series lies in its women, who carry this conflict even more than many of the men realize. – BA

Master Sol (Lee Jung-jae) in Lucasfilm's THE ACOLYTE, exclusively on Disney+.

Star Wars: The Acolyte

Available on: Disney+ (U.S. and U.K.)

Star Wars: The Acolyte is the first on-screen set entirely during the High Republic. This era was considered a Golden Age for Jedi across the galaxy, but this series is starting to show why that prosperity doesn’t last forever. The Acolyte follows twin sisters, Osha and Mae (Amandla Stenberg), who were separated by a tragic fire after Jedi intervention in their Force coven’s practices went horribly awry. Mae is now out for revenge, compelled by an unknown Master of the Dark Side, and Osha is desperate to stop her.

From Russian Doll’s Leslye Headland, The Acolyte is a fresh and exciting entry into the ever-growing Star Wars canon. It was made for fans who are a little tired of seeing the same kind of heroes’ stories told, and offers a new perspective on the galaxy through an era we’ve never seen brought to life before. The Acolyte also introduces a coven of badass, queer Force witches who were able to give birth through immaculate conception, I mean what more could you ask for? – BA

(L-R): Bishop (voiced by Isaac Robinson-Smith), Cyclops (voiced by Ray Chase), Magneto (voiced by Matthew Waterson), and Morph (voiced by JP Karliak) in Marvel Animation's X-MEN '97.

X-Men ’97

Available on: Disney+ (U.S. and U.K.)

X-Men ‘97 somehow manages to capture the fun of the original animated series without being bogged down by nostalgia. It quickly becomes its own thing, and proves how much potential we’ve been missing out on from the X-Men over the years. X-Men ‘97 is like a gripping superhero soap opera, full of relationship drama, secret clones, and world-ending apocalyptic events. Whether you’re a fan of the original or coming into the series with fresh eyes, it doesn’t take long for the show to pull you in (or for the catchy theme song to get stuck in your head). – BA

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