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Friday, January 25, 2019

2019 Preview: Television

Written by Jon Williams

Last week we finally got a premiere date for the return of one of television’s most acclaimed and popular shows. On April 14, the eighth and final season of Game of Thrones will debut on HBO. The finale of season seven aired on August 27, 2017, so fans have been not-so-patiently waiting for nearly two years for it to return. Game of Thrones has become known over the years for its shocking plot twists, and the six-episode final season is sure to deliver plenty of drama and action as the fate of Westeros is decided.

A number of beloved shows are coming to an end in 2019. Out today on Netflix are the final six episodes of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, the award-winning comedy series created by Tina Fey. In the comedy realm, both Veep and Broad City will take a bow with one last season each. The currently airing season five of Gotham will be its last, while Elementary will wrap after its upcoming seventh season. The fifth season of zombie detective show iZombie will end that story. The streaming prison drama Orange Is the New Black will also come to a conclusion after its seventh season, while the action-packed spy series Homeland will finish with its eighth. Finally, Academy Award nominee Rami Malek is back for one last round of the acclaimed Mr. Robot as its fourth season will be its last.

However, for all the series coming to an end, there are a number of new shows premiering that will vie for the attention of viewers looking for something to watch. Coming next month is Miracle Workers, a Heaven-set comedy based on the novel What in God’s Name by Simon Rich and starring Steve Buscemi and Daniel Radcliffe. Also coming in February is Boomerang, which follows the 1992 Eddie Murphy movie of the same name. In March, look for Turn Up Charlie, a streaming comedy created by and starring Idris Elba as a washed-up DJ who takes on child care duties for his friend’s daughter. Horror fans can look forward to NOS4A2, a series based on the novel of the same name by Joe Hill. And later this year, live-action Star Wars finally comes to the small screen with The Mandalorian, a series created by Jon Favreau and set between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens.

There are also a number of limited series and one-time television events for viewers to look forward to. This weekend will see a live production of Rent, the popular musical that made its stage debut in 1996 and came to theatres in 2005. On Monday comes the first episode of I Am the Night, a six-episode miniseries starring Chris Pine and directed by Wonder Woman’s Patty Jenkins. In March, Cosmos: Possible Worlds, starring Neil deGrasse Tyson, follows up the popular 2014 scientific series that itself followed on Carl Sagan’s 1980 show. Beginning in April is a six-episode miniseries adaptation of Les Miserables, a non-musical version based directly on Victor Hugo’s 1862 novel. Then in May comes a live production of the musical Hair, which originally came to the stage in 1967 and was adapted for film in 1979.

And then there are the shows that are coming back for another season, but not ending. Next month The Walking Dead returns from its midseason hiatus, carrying on after the departure of Andrew Lincoln, whose character, Rick Grimes, has served as the show’s main character up to this point. When that season ends, the spinoff, Fear the Walking Dead, will return for its fifth season. American Gods, adapted from Neil Gaiman’s novel, returns for a second season in March. Also in March comes the fourth season of the Showtime drama Billions, while April brings the return of the acclaimed Killing Eve. This year will also see the long-awaited third season of the hit sci-fi/horror series Stranger Things after a nearly two-year wait.

Television is in the middle of a golden age, with so many quality shows that it’s difficult to keep up with everything. With so many viewers perfectly content to sit down for marathon binge-watching sessions, you can help keep your patrons happy and entertained for hours on end by making sure your television collections are robust and up to date. Use the links above or SmartBrowse on our website to find more, and let us know what you and your patrons are looking forward to watching in 2019.

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