Every year dozens of new TV shows clamor for our attention. Some are easy enough to weed out as definite passes, while others jump out as immediate new faves. But then some slip between the cracks as life gets crazy and TV gets congested. Plenty of TV shows have come and gone in 2018 but there are a few that have stuck around and proved themselves as sure bets. The best new shows of 2018 include comedies, dramas, miniseries, and even a few reality shows! Not everything was a dumpster fire this year — TV, per usual, didn't let us down!
If you haven't had time to catch up on all the peak TV goodness this year, we get it. It's hard to commit to a new show when you don't know where it's going or if it's going to get canceled and break your heart. But these shows are the top-tier TV series of 2018 and will definitely be staying around for the long haul. This year has been a rough one but the best new shows of 2018 will always be here to pick you up. Here they all are, for your viewing pleasure!
This terrifying Netflix series is the best bit of horror TV to come out of 2018. The series is based on a novel by the same name and tells the story of siblings who grow up in what would become the most haunted house in the country. They return as adults to face the figurative, and literal, ghosts that haunt them. This one definitely isn't just a Halloween binge; it's elevated horror you can watch all year long. Plus, you know it's one of the best new shows of 2018 when no one can stop talking about it!
Glenn Howerton is best known for playing the horribly narcissistic Dennis on It's Always Sunny in Philadelhpia and good news — he plays basically the same character on A.P. Bio! That's actually a good thing since Howerton plays a manipulative jerk oh-so-well. On this series, he plays a Harvard philosophy professor who loses out on his dream job and returns to his hometown to teach. But instead of embracing teaching, he derides it constantly and uses his students to enact revenge on the colleague who stole the job he wanted. Oh, and no, this is not a situation where he falls in love with his students and begins to find pride in teaching. Nope, he's a straight-up bad person and that's why we love this one.
This creepy, crazy thrill ride is probably the most bonkers new show of 2018. Penn Badgley stars as Joe, a New Yorker who becomes obsessed with one of the customers at his bookstore. It gets real wild real quick and is by far one of the most surprising TV hits to come along in a while. Joe's use of social media and the internet to find out everything he'd need to know about his new obsession makes this one a true cautionary tale. As wild as the show is, the fact that it could all easily happen is what will keep you hooked. We didn't expect this one to be one of the best new shows of 2018 but we're glad it exceeded expectations!
How could this not be one of the best new shows of 2018?! Most of the OG Jersey Shore cast reunites on this series that brings the guidos and guidettes back to our TV screens. After the series was originally canceled in 2012, the cast members went on to start families and businesses. But, let's be real, they're still the wild Jersey family we've always loved. The first and second seasons were released in 2018 and reminded us of one big thing: we all slept on Vinny Guadagnino for far too long!
The fate of the Roseanne reboot was in flux in early 2018 when Roseanne Barr's tweets got out of hand and ABC fired her and canceled the series. But the network soon reversed one of those decisions. It decided to bring back the show, sans Barr, and focus on the Conner family surviving without its matriarch. It was a risky gambit but has undoubtedly paid off. Laurie Metcalf and John Goodman were born to lead a sitcom together. Despite all Barr's done for the legacy of the show (and creation of it!), this new era feels fresh and revitalized. It's a must-watch for any fan of the old series.
Jim Carrey has finally returned to Hollywood! The hilarious star has been long-absent from movies and TV, but with 2018's Kidding, he has returned. Unsurprisingly, the show is great. Carrey plays Jeff Pickles, a pillar in children's television, who is going through personal and professional issues that are slowly eating at his sanity. The comedian brings his perfect chaotic nature to the role as Pickles tries to cope with the hardships life continues to throw at him. Carrey's had a rough last few years but it's a breath of fresh air to see him back in the spotlight.
Most shows about Hollywood are about young 20-somethings trying to find fame in L.A. This series takes a sharp turn in the other direction and focuses on Sandy Kominsky (Michael Douglas), an aging acting coach who once had success in Hollywood. Kominsky is revered and seen as one of the best in the biz, but navigating L.A. during your twilight years can prove to be a difficult venture. There are plenty of "acting in Los Angeles" TV shows out there but this one takes the premise in an unexpected direction. That's why we've crowned it one of the best new shows of 2018!
Some shows are just too pure for this world. Nailed It! is a new kind of baking competition. Amateur bakers compete to recreate crazy confections (think Pinterest ideas come to life) and whoever gets the closest wins. It, expectedly, leads to some hilariously bad culinary creations! One of the big reasons why this is one of the best new shows of 2018 is because we got so much of it throughout the year. Three seasons to be exact! The series is hosted by Nicole Byer which means this is a great treat to fill the Girl Code-sized hole in your heart!
The Neopolitan novels by pseudonymous Elena Ferrante have captivated book readers for years and now they're finally making their way to TV. The first of the four-book series of the same name made its TV debut in late 2018. True to the roots of the writing, the series was filmed in Italian and stars Italian actors. The eight-episode miniseries centers on Elena who, in her old age, learns that one of her closest friends has disappeared. She begins reflecting on the history of their friendship, which began in the 1950s in Naples, Italy. Elena and her friend are starkly different but find a match in one another. The other books in Ferrante's series are set to also become miniseries!
Emma Stone + Jonah Hill + mind-bending pharmaceuticals = TV gold. Stone and Hill are reunited for the first time since Superbad and in stranger territory than ever. The two play troubled people drawn to a three-day drug trial for a pill that will supposedly solve all of the problems in their minds. Of course, it doesn't go as planned! This wild ride is full of stunning visuals and shocking twists and turns. It's the most unexpected delight of 2018 TV!
You can never have enough TV shows about adolescence! Everything Sucks! tackles middle school in the '90s, focusing on the A/V nerds and drama geeks trying to survive raging hormones and the confusion of growing up. Unfortunately, Netflix canceled the show shortly after its debut so the first season is the only season. It's still well worth the watch as one of the best new shows of 2018 despite the fact that it won't be making it to 2019!
Sandra Oh's post-Grey's Anatomy career has been thrilling to watch. Her return to TV with Killing Eve shows just how fantastic the actress is away from scrubs and hospital drama! She plays Eve, an MI5 officer who becomes obsessed with tracking down a killer. The psychopathic killer, Villanelle (Jodie Comer), soon becomes just as obsessed with Eve. The series is not only being praised as one of the best new shows of 2018, but one of the best new shows in as long as anyone can remember!
Saturday Night Live alums Maya Rudolph and Fred Armisen star in a comedy that probably has the biggest twist of any show in 2018. We won't spoil it for you here, but by the end of the first episode, you'll be transported into a completely different show than what you thought you were watching. The inventive concept involves a couple that begins to consider wanting more out of their relationship and lives. This show is definitely one of the most pleasant surprises of the year.
David Letterman left the late night show circuit but didn't leave the interview business. He just changed the format. His series for Netflix is just him, his guest, and an hour of great discussion. When your first guest is President Barack Obama, you know the show has promise! The interviews aren't just fluff and faux controversy like so many taped sitdowns are these days. They involve real discussion, genuine insight, and some fun moments with our favorite celebrity figures. The only issue? With so many great guests during the first season, we're not sure who Letterman can get to top them in the second!
Bill Hader has always had a knack for bizarre comedy, especially during his days on Saturday Night Live. But 2018's Barry really let him stretch his wings when it comes to interesting hilarity. In the series, Hader plays Barry, a hitman who becomes an actor after traveling to L.A. to kill someone. Barry is so dissatisfied with his life that the thought of involving himself in the L.A. creative scene is new and exciting. Abandoning the hitman life may be harder than he thought, though. Hader's performance has been praised everywhere (and is now award-nominated!) so it's no surprise this is one of the shining stars of 2018 television!
The original Queer Eye for the Straight Guy premiered in 2003 and introduced the world to the "Fab Five." Reboots can be hit or miss (more often miss) but this one was one we never knew we needed until we got it! The new "Fab Five" brings the magic of the original to Netflix in this heartwarming series. Tan France, Antoni Porowski, and co. bring the magic of fashion, culture, design, "cooking," (don't get me started) and grooming to men across the country that desperately need a makeover. Two seasons of the series have been released in 2018 and there's no sign of Queer Eye fatigue in sight. Give us all the seasons forever and ever, please!
This is not the Sabrina you think you know! While we all loved Sabrina the Teenage Witch, this new, darker retelling is a fresh take on the teen witch concept. Intertwined with the lush world of Riverdale (crossovers are coming!), the series is representative of the modern era of Archie Comics. The show follows Sabrina Spellman (Kiernan Shipka) as she reconciles her half-witch, half-mortal nature and tries to protect her world from evil. With all the hype surrounding the series, it was unclear if it could live up to the expectations. Well it did, and more, and became one of the best new series of 2018!