On my Radar: TV Shows with Potential


It is often said that we live in a golden age of TV, and I would have to agree. There have been some incredibly deep and complex dramas over the last few years which have explored the nature of being human from many different angles. There have also been some truly progressive comedies that challenged social norms and have helped inspire a real change of attitudes. Even many of the (what I like to call) ‘popcorn’ TV shows – those with no real depth of substance – have been very good for what they are. It’s often difficult, though, to find a TV show that really grabs your attention. TV shows regularly run over 6+ series, sucking up hours of our precious time. It’s a pretty big commitment to throw yourself into a new show. I have tracked down five shows that look intriguing, and that could have potential. I haven’t actually seen any of them – and that was a precondition for including them in my list. As a result, shows like The Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, Better Call Saul (rubbish), House of Cards, and Breaking Bad (good) are absent from this list. Perhaps my good readers can add to the trailers below, and let me know which of these shows are really worth the time.

The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Biography, Crime, Drama

An anthology series centered around some of history’s most famous criminals.

I think it’s an interesting idea to turn a real crime story into a fictionalised TV show. I don’t know much about the O.J. Simpson trial, but I am sure I will learn plenty from this. It’s got some great actors in it, too. It’s currently airing so won’t be too hard to catch up on.

Crime, Drama, Thriller

The story behind Commissioner James Gordon’s rise to prominence in Gotham City in the years before Batman’s arrival.

Batman is the only super hero I am really bothered with so any backstory of the city and villains is bound to get me hyped up. I will admit that the show doesn’t look amazing in and of itself, and is basically being carried by the love for the Batman universe – but the same could definitely be said of the slew of superhero movies and TV shows around at the moment, and people gobble that shite up.

Drama, Music

A New York music executive in the 1970s hustles to make a career out of the city’s diverse music scene.

This show is the one I’m most excited to watch out of the whole list. Same team that was behind Boardwalk Empire, which is another of the greatest shows in recent years, and also starred Bobby Cannavale – one of the most entertaining actors in the business. He’s definitely strong enough to lead his own show and I am eager to see this as soon as possible.

Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller

High school teacher Jake Epping travels back in time to prevent the assassination of President John F. Kennedy – but his mission is threatened by Lee Harvey Oswald, falling in love, and the past itself, which doesn’t want to be changed and shouldn’t be changed.

This TV show is adapted from a Stephen King novel that I have been wanting to read for ages. Instead I opted for Misery (which I will be posting my first thoughts on when I’m done) as my first King book. I’ve always known that King is revered in the literary world, of course, but I never really looked in to him until recently. His stories are a perfect blend of the real and the unreal – which I love! Having James Franco and JJ Abrams attached to this as well makes it sure to be epic. (Sidenote: I’m also very excited for the screen adaptation of The Dark Tower which is in the works. A novel that looks very interesting)

American Horror Story
Drama, Horror, Thriller

An anthology series that centers on different characters and locations, including a house with a murderous past, an insane asylum, a witch coven, a freak show, and an enigmatic hotel.
I have known about this show for several years now and have not got round to watching it. I can’t decide if it’s going to be absolutely terrible or really awesome. Either way, it looks like it’ll be good fun – even if it’s just pure escapism.

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