The most talked-about shows in 2023 included HBO’s The Last of Us, Peacock’s Poker Face, Netflix’s The Fall of the House of Usher, and Apple TV+’s Silo. There are only so many hours in a day to watch everything, though, which means others might have fallen by the wayside. The following shows probably ended up on your “that looks interesting” list, only to never actually be watched. Don’t worry, there’s still time.
If you’re anxiously awaiting the return of your favorite shows this year, maybe some of the most anticipated drama series of 2024, take this time to power through five underrated 2023 TV shows you need to watch in 2024. If you haven’t watched these shows yet, you’re seriously missing out on quality television.
Class of ‘07
This Australian comedy didn’t get much attention last year, but those who watched it absolutely adored it. In fact, though Class of ‘07 doesn’t have a slew of reviews on sites like Rotten Tomatoes, it has secured a 100% critics score and 95% audience score from the few that have weighed in. The apocalyptic story is about a group of women who become stranded at their 10-year high school reunion when a massive disaster effectively wipes out the entire world. The school is on an island, so they have been spared. But resources are scarce, and tensions are high.
Imagine what it would be like to be cut off from your loved ones, believing them all to be dead and gone. The only people left are the ones you spent your formative years with — and it wasn’t always pleasant. Many of the women didn’t get along then and don’t get along now. They all have insecurities and hang-ups, and the inevitable power struggles that mirror high school cliques and teenage drama lead to unimaginable challenges. Class of ’07 is a comedy at heart, but the themes of fractured, complicated female friendships and childhood trauma lead to more serious storylines, too. Tone aside, Class of ’07 is entertaining all the way through.
Stream Class of ’07 on Amazon Prime Video.
Taron Egerton has been enjoying tremendous success on the big screen, but Black Bird, while well -eviewed, didn’t count among the most talked-about shows of 2023 even though it should have. Based on a true story, it stars Egerton as James “Jimmy” Keene, a once promising young man whose criminal life catches up with him and lands him in jail. Desperate to close a case, detectives decide to do something unorthodox and lean on Jimmy and his charming and charismatic demeanor. He’s offered a plea deal: get a suspected serial killer they can’t seem to crack to confess and his entire sentence will be commuted.
Such begins the cat-and-mouse game between Jimmy and Larry Hall (Emmy winner Paul Walter Hauser), the eccentric, seemingly harmless, but clearly dangerous man accused of more than a dozen rapes and murders. You feel Jimmy’s skin crawl as he endears himself to the deplorable man, struggling with every conversation. He has to play pretend while reconciling what this man has been accused of doing with trying to befriend and ingratiate himself to Larry. The series, which also marks the late Ray Liotta’s final on-screen role as Jimmy’s father, is deeply disturbing, all the more so each time you remind yourself that it’s based on real events. Egerton and Hauser both deliver arguably the best performances of their careers in Black Bird.
Stream Black Bird on Apple TV+.
When it comes to 2023 thrillers, shows like Netflix’s The Night Agent gobbled up all the attention. Hijack was largely lost amid the long list of other fabulous Apple TV+ titles last year, many of which were admittedly better. But there’s something about the tense, frantic nature of Hijack that makes it a thoroughly entertaining watch even if it’s totally unbelievable at times. Idris Elba is Sam, a corporate business negotiator who uses his boardroom skills in a much more high-stakes life or death scenario: trying to diffuse the situation when his plane is hijacked. The show splits its time between the action on the plane and with the people on the ground trying to figure out what is happening and making crucial decisions about what to do next.
Every scene, once Hijack gets going, is nail-biting. Even if you suspect you know how Hijack will end, each episode still delivers deliciously devilish twists and turns to keep your interest piqued. It’s the type of show you’ll have a tough time not watching in one sitting and that should have been right up there with The Night Agent.
Stream Hijack on Apple TV+.
Fun, action-packed, even campy at times, Twisted Metal is a postapocalyptic action comedy based on the vehicular combat video game franchise of the same name. Anthony Mackie and Stephanie Beatriz shine in their roles as two people in search of a supposedly valuable item that can gain Mackie’s John Doe entry into an exclusive and protected community. All the supporting characters add to the series’ charm as well, including Joe Seanoa as Sweet Tooth (voiced by Will Arnett), a psychopathic survivor who wears a clown mask, and Thomas Haden Church as ruthless Agent Stone, a former mall security guard turned makeshift cop who makes it his mission to wreak havoc and puff his chest.
It’s full of cartoonish, heavy violence, but it’s also emotional at times. If you love epic car chases, disgustingly bloody murders, and a dash of humor, Twisted Metal is worth checking out.
Stream Twisted Metal in Peacock.
You’d think a series about AI would have been analyzed and dissected during a year when AI dominated the conversation in the tech space. It might be that Mrs. Davis’ premise sounds silly; even the first few episodes might have you scratching your head at what exactly the show is all about. The sci-fi comedy drama is set in a near future world where an AI named Mrs. Davis virtually controls everything everyone does or says. That is, everyone except for Simone (Betty Gilpin), a nun who refuses to submit. When Mrs. Davis backs Simone into a corner, however, the follower of God reluctantly strikes a deal: if Simone can find the Holy Grail for Mrs. Davis, the AI must end itself for good.
The story goes in so many weird and wonderful directions, and features supporting characters who are as endearing as they are odd. But it’s the payoff in the end that truly makes Mrs. Davis worth watching. Below the surface, Mrs. Davis is social commentary on the state of the world, our reliance on and confidence in AI, and a technological warning. If you haven’t watched Mrs. Davis yet, you’re missing out.
Stream Mrs. Davis on Peacock.