34 Best TV Shows Similar to Rick and Morty
Gus Van Sant & Jon Robin Baitz collaborate on a miniseries rich in both vintage style & human drama.
Nora Ephron once said “Everything is copy.” When you’re a writer, anything you see, experience, or hear, even in confidence, might be filed away to use as creative fodder later, despite the potentially sketchy ethics of it. If you’re lucky, maybe your friends won’t recognize themselves quite as easily as the friends of Truman Capote did when he wrote “La Côte Basque, 1965,” a short story published in Esquire. Though the story purported to be fiction, it was thinly veiled fiction at best. So thin, in fact, you could see right through it.
The events leading up to the publication of Capote’s work in 1975, and the fallout afterward, is the focus of Feud: Capote vs. The Swans, a limited series that at first blush looks like it’s going to be camp nonsense in the vein of the interminable Real Housewives franchise, but has a deep sense of melancholy at its core. With the first four episodes directed by Gus Van Sant, where an easy approach would be to clearly delineate villains and heroes from the beginning, instead it offers something a little more complicated, and asks some uncomfortable questions about friendship, creativity, and trust. Continue Reading →
Disney+'s animated exploration of what could've been continues to intrigue in Season 2, but not all episodes are created equal.
With What If…? Season 2, the time seems right to take a look at both seasons and rank them for your entertainment. Is it wrong to rank art? Possibly, but we’re of the mind that something that feels this good can’t possibly be bad.
On that note, let’s not waste a moment more and start counting down from worst to best. The Watcher (Jeffrey Wright) hates to be kept waiting! Continue Reading →
GREGORY HORROR SHOW
A quick overview of the high highs and middling disappointments in horror this year.
With the social media app formerly known as Twitter now a shell of its former self, horror fans have been forced to return to Facebook to continue such interminable debates as “What does or doesn’t qualify something as ‘horror’?” “What the hell is ‘elevated horror,’ anyway?” “Are remakes inherently bad?” “Have horror movies gotten too ‘woke’?” “Were we wrong for letting women make horror?”
In a year when both David Gordon Green and M. Night Shyamalan released new movies, the horror discourse was especially spicy, and that’s before we get to the really interesting stories, like the surprise viral success of Skinamarink, which, with the way time seems to be passing nowadays, feels like it was released five years ago. Both indie and mainstream horror made daring choices, not looking to appeal to as broad a range of audiences as possible, and treating the genre as a serious art form, as opposed to just a machine that prints money. But the biggest surprise came in October, with the release of Saw X, the tenth film in a seemingly unkillable franchise, which ended up being one of the best, most coherent entries in the entire series. Continue Reading →
Do we need another live-action Goosebumps adaptation? After a ’90s Fox Kids series and a pair of 2010s films, one would assume that the ground of turning Slappy the dummy and other frightening beings into flesh-and-blood creations has been well-trodden. Continue Reading →
When Frasier premiered in the fall of 1993 it had massive shoes to fill. That's probably an understatement. Its parent show, Cheers, was a critical and commercial monster in a way that can only happen when there are only three shows for two hundred million people to choose from. It was nominated for almost two hundred Emmys over the course of its eleven-year run, and its series finale aired to 90 million people (40% of the country’s then population) three months before Frasier’s start. So yeah, expectations were pretty high, and Frasier ended up pretty much meeting them all. While never as popular as Cheers (nothing has been as popular as Cheers since Cheers), it was nevertheless a solid commercial hit that carved out its own identity and won more Emmys than its parent show over the course of its own eleven-year run. A lot of that success was rooted in Frasier’s ability as its own, independent show with its own characters and rhythms instead of being Cheers 2.0. Continue Reading →
One of the common complaints about Marvel’s attempts at multiverse storytelling is that it renders everything meaningless. If there is another Ikaris of the Eternals out there—or a possibly infinite number of them—why should one care if the one in front of us dies? Generally, this writer finds the argument unconvincing. If I told you there were infinite versions of your friend out there in the multiverse you might someday meet, you’d still care quite a bit to see your version die in front of you. Continue Reading →
In 1983, a group of crooks broke into a vault at the Heathrow International Trading Estate in London, patrolled by Brink’s Mat security conglomeration. The Brinks company was already famous for a famous robbery, one that was carried out in the '50s in the North End in Boston, an incident that turned into a charmingly strange movie by William Friedkin in 1978. Continue Reading →
The theme music is gone. Continue Reading →
Every episode of Amazon’s Swarm begins with a title card that reads, “This is not a work of fiction. Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events, is intentional.” Continue Reading →
Some pray high school will never end. Some feel like it goes on for a painful forever. For Maddie Nears (Peyton List), those desires and hyperbolic thoughts may have become quite literal. If you die on her high school’s campus of unnatural causes, you apparently hang around with the other ghosts until you figure out how to move on. Imagine finding out the afterlife is real and you’ll never leave your high school again in the same moment. Continue Reading →
The Harley Quinn animated TV series has always been about subverting expectations. The basic DNA of the show initially seemed so formulaic (a raunchy take on DC Comics superheroes, scandalous!) before morphing into something much more fun and emotionally resonant. Potentially one-joke characters like Bane have become so delightfully nuanced and messy. Continue Reading →
That '90s Show
That ‘70s Show That ’70s Show first aired on Fox in 1998. Throughout the seasons, viewers watched Eric Forman (Topher Grace) and his motley crew of friends as they got into hijinks in ’70s Wisconsin. The friends often met in Eric’s basement, forging bonds through pot-fueled smoky clouds. There were highs, both metaphorically and literally, culminating in a finale in 2006. It’s only fitting that the nostalgia trip continues with the spinoff That ’90s Show. It’sa fun sequel series that plays with elements of the original series while establishing its own path. Continue Reading →
Better Call Saul
Better Call Saul is a tragedy. From the beginning, it focused on a rough-edged, yet decent man whom the audience knows will one day become an unrepentant merchant of death and destruction. What makes it so tragic, beyond the known destination, is that the series is riddled with missed exits. Time and again, Jimmy McGill (Bob Odenkirk) faced situations where -- if he’d just pulled back from the brink, if he’d only taken his lumps instead of wriggling out of them, if he’d simply chosen not to push things too far -- all of this could have been avoided. Continue Reading →
The Night Shift
Ron Howard has been directing feature films for almost 45 years now (his latest, Thirteen Lives, has just opened) and I think most would agree that he long ago proved himself behind the camera—he works well with actors, tells his stories cleanly and efficiently and, barring outliers like How the Grinch Stole Christmas or Hillbilly Elegy, even his films that don’t quite work never go completely off the rails into complete disasterdom. If there is a flaw to Howard’s method, it is that there is never a personal touch or sensibility to most of his films—even the most ardent auteurist would struggle to find any sort of artistic throughline connecting his work. Sure, there is something to be said for solid, sensible craftsmanship, but Howard as a filmmaker could stand to let his artistic freak flag fly once in a while. Continue Reading →
Under the Banner of Heaven
Chances are that if you know any Mormons at all, they’re far more likely to be ex-Mormons. Despite claims that the Mormon Church is one of the fastest growing religions in the United States (source: the Mormon Church), in reality, like most organized religions in America, membership has been on a steady decline for the past decade. Along with the same issues other churches face, the Latter Day Saints also suffer from years of bad P.R., forever associated with magic underwear, child brides, and polygamy, though the latter two aren’t permitted within the modern Mormon Church, and haven’t been since the 19th century. Every church has its members who take things a little too literally, however, and that occasionally results in tragedy, as illustrated by FX’s docudrama Under the Banner of Heaven, a chilling true story about death and faith. Continue Reading →
There’s a song that was popular in the aughts with the lyric “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end,” and it feels like the most fitting description of The Expanse. It’s a show that has changed identities more times than Sidney Bristow and managed to retain a strong, cohesive narrative, with this season bringing its final arc full circle. Not to the proto-molecule, but to the struggle of the Belters to get their fair shake from Earth and Mars, something Joe Miller (Thomas Jane) dreamed of in the very first episode, something Fred Johnson (Chad Coleman) lived and died for. Continue Reading →
The Sex Lives of College Girls
Despite sounding like something one might hesitate to Google outside of a private browser, HBO Max's The Sex Lives of College Girls is a fairly wholesome dramedy about four young women starting off their adult lives as freshmen in college. Admittedly, yes, college freshmen who do have sex, but wholesome just the same. Created by Mindy Kaling and Justin Noble (who also write many of the episodes) TSLoCG quickly overcomes the gimmicky nature of its title. Continue Reading →
First things first. Just to be very clear, Animaniacs remains a funny show. The writing staff led by showrunner Wellesley Wild is undoubtedly clever. They can turn a phrase. They can develop an idea. Likewise, the voice talents, especially the trio behind Dot (Tress MacNeille), Wakko (Jess Harnell), and Yakko (Rob Paulsen, who also provides Pinky’s voice), are quite funny and haven’t lost their gift for motormouthed gab in the years since the first series. Continue Reading →
Blade Runner: Black Lotus
Los Angeles. 2032. 13 years after Blade Runner Rick Deckard completed his last job for the LAPD. Ten years after the nuclear blackout that wiped the city's history clean. Four years before the brilliant but utterly vicious industrialist Niander Wallace will successfully lobby for the re-legalization of the artificial humanoids called Replicants. Seventeen years before Replicant Blade Runner KD6-3.7 will be assigned to retire rogue Replicant Sapper Morton. A young woman named Elle (voiced by Jessica Henwick of the upcoming The Matrix Resurrections) wakes up in the back of an automated shipping truck. Her memory is a shamble. The only clues she has to her identity are a mysterious device she cannot unlock, inexplicable and ferocious combat skills, and a beautiful tattoo of a black lotus on her back. Continue Reading →