This past year, while rough, has been remarkable in terms of women supporting each other and forcing change. Empowerment will continue to be a theme in 2018 – both in real life and in pop culture – and it brings with it a new host of shows created by and/or starring women.
While old favourites like Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale (back in April) and Netflix’s Jessica Jones (returning 8 March) will continue to show women toppling the patriarchy in their own unique way, here are some new programmes that will help you support sisterhood from your living room.
2 Dope Queens
HBO will air four live episodes of everyone’s favorite Cocoa Khaleesi-hosted podcast on consecutive Friday nights in February. And while it is fun to see stars Jessica Williams and Phoebe Robinson IRL instead of just listening to them, the specials also let us fall in love with (perhaps) lesser-known and equally amazing comedians like Michelle Buteau and Naomi Ekperigin. An added bonus: actress/comedian/all-around badass Tig Notaro directed all the episodes.
The episodes premiere on 2 February on HBO (and for something else empowering – but much more somber – tune in on 24 February for the channel’s staging of Anna Deavere Smith’s Notes From the Field, the playwright-activist’s one-woman show about youth incarceration).
Already in love with Yara Shahidi’s new Black-ish spinoff Grown-ish? Stick around a little longer to watch this new comedy co-created and starring Crazy Ex-Girlfriend’s Esther Povitsky as the female half of the world’s most awkward friend-zoned relationship. (In the spirit of equality, we feel it’s necessary to mention that comic Benji Aflalo is the other half). Watch it with someone you’d freely pee in front of but would never actually date. Premiering 10 January.
Lena Waithe, the Emmy-winning writer (and actress) from Netflix’s Master of None, shows you a side of Chicago that goes beyond what you might find in some glossed-over news reports. In her new series, which also counts musician Common as an executive producer, Waithe has created a world of interlacing stories that chronicle the subculture of the South Side – where men may feel like they need to step up and take care of things, but it’s women who really run the show. Premiering 7 January.
Wondering what Rose McGowan’s experience has been since Harvey Weinstein reportedly squashed her attempts to hold him accountable for sexual assault? This new five-part documentary series from the producers of Keeping up with the Kardashians will help us find out. It chronicles the actress-turned-activist’s journey as she releases her memoir, Brave, and continues to fight for survivors of assault and harassment. Premiering 30 January 30 on E!.
Retta, Christina Hendricks, and Mae Whitman star in this new dramedy about a group of moms who break bad when men, money or some combination of both keep getting in the way of their abilities to get shit done. For anyone who’s ever screamed silently on hold with an insurance provider, consider this show your new cathartic release. Premiering 26 February.
Imagine Hannibal, only with women and less human-flesh eating. Phoebe Waller-Bridge – AKA the lady with the amazing gift for facial expressions in her Amazon show Fleabag – adapted this series about two powerful women from Luke Jennings’ Villanelle book series. Jodie Comer plays an elegant, talented psychopathic assassin who also happens to be obsessed with Sandra Oh’s Eve, the unchallenged security service operative who in turn becomes obsessed with finding her. Premiering in April.
Are you a Jo or an Amy? This adaptation of Louisa May Alcott’s novel – one of the most beloved and female-forward books ever written – stars Maya Hawke, Willa Fitzgerald, Annes Elwy and Kathryn Newton as the four titular sisters. Emily Watson plays matriarch Marmee March and Angela Lansbury plays wealthy and opinionated Aunt March in this Civil War-era drama. Premiering 18 May.
Shoshannah Stern and Josh Feldman – who both happen to be hearing impaired – wrote, directed and star as best friends who are at different phases of relationships (she engaged to Zach Gilford’s Danny; he suffering from a break-up with Colt Prattes’ Ryan). More funny than the show’s premiere being Valentine’s Day, is the not-so-subtle side-eye it gives to people who fail to treat deaf people with respect and normalcy. Premiering 14 February.
The domestic goddess is back! Roseanne Barr, as well as pretty much everyone else from her seminal sitcom, returns for a new generation of middle-American tough love. (Yes, even John Goodman, despite his character’s fate in the original’s finale). The characters will still be living paycheque-to-paycheque and topics like Making America Great Again will probably be handled with the same amount of realism as the first go-around. Premiering 27 March.
The Killing creator Veena Sud returns to a world of crime with this new anthology series that paints full human pictures of the stories that grab headlines. Case in point: the first season follows a cover-up that ensues when a white police officer accidentally hits a black teenager with his car. Regina King, who is no stranger to the anthology format after winning two Emmys for ABC’s American Crime, stars as the mother of the slain boy. Premiering 23 February on Netflix.
Sweetbitter and Vida
Stephanie Danler’s best-seller Sweetbitter (about a small-town girl who moves to New York to become anyone but herself) is getting the TV treatment. Churchill’s Ella Purnell stars as Tess, an uneducated waitress who quickly finds that drinks, drugs, dudes and other thrills await behind the scenes of fine dining. Meanwhile, Vida is set on the opposite side of the coast, and is a half-hour drama about Mexican-American sisters from East LA who can’t seem to escape their roots once they find out some shocking details about their mom’s identity. Mishel Prada and Melissa Barrera star.
Via Marie Claire US