Winter movies make their fully triumphant return in 2022 — but don’t forget about your TV, which took care of you when you couldn’t leave the house. This winter brings new seasons of Stranger Things, The Umbrella Academy, The Boys, and more, plus some red-hot debuts from some of nerd-dom’s biggest franchises.
The Essex Serpent
Sarah Perry’s best-selling 2016 novel forms the basis for this six-episode series, which stars Claire Danes as a widow who moves from London to a small town in Essex in search of a mythical sea dragon, where she befriends a local vicar played by Loki’s Tom Hiddleston.
The Time Traveller’s Wife
Already made into a 2009 feature film, this series adaptation from Steven Moffatt (Doctor Who) of Audrey Niffenegger’s romantic best-seller stars Game of Thrones’ Rose Leslie (as the wife) and Divergent’s Theo James (as the time-travelling husband).
In this sci-fi drama, Sissy Spacek and J.K. Simmons play a longtime married couple whose peaceful life becomes complicated by the portal to another planet hidden in their rural backyard.
Ewan McGregor plays the Jedi during the “watching over young Luke Skywalker on Tatooine” phase of his life, which will also include quite a bit of interference from Darth Vader and his persistent minions. Read all about the Star Wars series here.
The first half of season four promises more 1980s supernatural adventures for the heroes of Hawkins, Indiana — or points beyond, given that season three sent half the cast to live in California, and left Chief Hopper (David Harbour) stranded in a Russian prison.
As a matter of fact, this sequel to (and retooling of) the cheesy, cult-beloved 1970s show about an enchanted island where your dreams come true (for better and worse) got a second season, with Roselyn Sánchez returning as Elena Roarke, the great-niece of Ricardo Montalbán’s original series lead.
The Will Arnett-hosted reality competition showcasing some of the most ridiculously wonderful creations using tiny plastic bricks you’ll ever see returns for a third season.
The Orville: New Horizons
Eric Kripke’s racy superhero satire (based on the comic book by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson) returns for its much-anticipated third season, with some new cast members along for the ride — including Jensen Ackles (Supernatural) as Soldier Boy.
Marvel’s latest Disney+ series is created by Bisha K. Ali and stars Iman Vellani as Kamala Khan, aka Ms. Marvel, a Pakistani-American teen from New Jersey who’s already a big Captain Marvel fan before she gains her own cosmic powers.
For All Mankind
The acclaimed alt-history space-race drama from Ronald D. Moore (Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica) returns for a third season.
Last season saw the Catholic Church-backed team of investigators endure all manner of horrors, including sinister dolls, cannibals, demons in their midst, and one episode conduced in completely silence. How will they top that? Season three awaits.
Motherland: Fort Salem
It’s the third and final season for Motherland: Fort Salem, so if you were ever curious about this series about witches who use their powers in the U.S. Army (which is indeed a very curious set-up for a supernatural drama series!) now’s the time to catch up.
The Umbrella Academy
The wonderfully dysfunctional superpowered family returns to (presumably) face more apocalypses in this third season of the series, adapted from the Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá Dark Horse comic series.
“Moonhaven centres on Bella Sway (Emma McDonald), a lunar cargo pilot and smuggler 100 years in the future who finds herself accused of a crime and marooned on Moonhaven, a utopian community set on a 500 square mile Garden of Eden built on the Moon to find solutions to the problems that will soon end civilisation on Mother Earth. A sceptic in Paradise, Bella is sucked into a conspiracy to gain control of the artificial intelligence responsible for Moonhaven’s miracles and teams with a local detective to stop the forces that want to destroy Earth’s last hope before they are destroyed themselves.” The cast also includes Dominic Monaghan (Lost), Amara Karan (Doctor Who), and Joe Manganiello (True Blood).
HBO’s twisted tale of the dangers of artificial intelligence — as well as human power left unchecked, along with a lot of other layered themes — returns to, hopefully, make good after an uneven third season saw the story leaving the Wild West for the big city.
Not the video game, not the movie series, not the animated series — this is the live-action series starring Lance Reddick as Albert Wesker, whose daughter Jade is the main character: “Resident Evil takes place in the year 2036. 14 years after a deadly virus caused a global apocalypse, Jade Wesker fights for survival in a world overrun by the blood-thirsty infected and insane creatures.”
Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous
Light & Magic
Disney’s love for behind-the-scenes documentary series continues apace with this six-part, “unparalleled” peek behind the scenes at Industrial Light & Magic. “Learn what inspired some of the most legendary filmmakers in Hollywood history, and follow their stories from their earliest personal films to bringing George Lucas’ vision to life.”
The House of the Dragon
Game of Thrones fans, or former Game of Thrones fans who hated season eight and have long since grown weary of waiting for Winds of Winter — here’s a little dragon-stuffed, Targaryen-flavored balm for your soul. Learn more here.
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
Need more TV, you fiend? Here’s a few titles we might well be seeing this summer, but have not yet confirmed their release dates. If not summer, look for these in the fall or winter: Locke & Key (season three, Netflix); The Sandman (new series, Netflix); The Witcher: Blood Origin (new series, Netflix); Willow (new series, Disney+).