Pumpkin spice everything, color-changing leaves, light sweaters — fall is the best season, full stop. We wait all year for the coziest season to come again, planning our Halloween costumes and dreaming of Thanksgiving pies, but what if there was a way to experience fall 365 days a year? If you're like us and prefer your coffee hot and your apples picked, we've found a way to experience the glories of autumn using just the push of a button. Ditch your summertime sadness and your winter blues, it can be fall all the time with these twenty eternally autumnal television shows.
Vancouver might give Riverdale its snowy winter backdrop, but for The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, it's October all the time. Aside from their Christmas special, "A Midwinter's Tale," Sabrina and her friends frolic in forests with changing leaves, wear warm and Earth-toned clothing, and embrace their witchy aesthetic. Costume designer Angus Strathie told The Hollywood Reporter that director Lee Toland Krieger's vision for the show was for Greendale to exist "in eternal autumn" with a "timeless, country America feeling" informed by the '60s. Suffice to say, they've succeeded on all counts.
The original Sabrina: The Teenage Witch wasn't expressly told to give off year-round autumn vibes, but they might be a side effect of witch-centric shows. You can find Aunt Hilda brewing potions in her cauldron wearing her pumpkin aprons during any season, the show's '90s fashions were conservative in a way that suggests an eternal chill in the air, and when Sabrina did expressly do fall, it went all-out. We're talking autumn leaves indoors, plates of candy corn and caramel apples, orange dresses and trick-or-treaters, and a cat wearing a ghost costume who says "Boo!" And it's not just Halloween — they go all-out for Thanksgiving, too.
Now, we're talking Stranger Things seasons one and two, because season three did summer perfectly. But even when Joyce Byers was buying Christmas tree lights and the town was preparing for Christmas, Hawkins, Indiana always seemed like an autumn type of town. For one thing, it would have snowed way more often if this was really an Indiana winter, and we only see that good Winter snow at the very end of season one. Season two is expressly taking place during the fall, with the kids dressing up as Ghostbusters for Halloween and a mysterious pumpkin patch driving the plot forward. Stranger Things gave us a lot to be thankful for.
Any show that talks this much about hot coffee and a slice of pie must be set in an eternal fall. The title card shows some barren trees, some thriving evergreens, and some changing leaves, the surreal small-town aesthetic is like a warm autumnal hug from someone that might murder you at any moment, and its spooky, and at times supernatural plot just screams "October!" The Odyssey called Twin Peaks the television equivalent of a Pumpkin Spice Latte because of its woodsy Washington forests and fondness for plaid.
We don't need the CW reboot's overly-polished vibes and modern college town (although we do love the commitment to diversity!), it's all-fall-everything on the OG Charmed. We'll take the Halliwell sisters' San Franciscan '90s home, where all you ever need is a light jacket. It's never really summer or winter in SF — so the long-sleeved shirts with no coat that the Charmed Ones don year-round give us fall vibes, as does their spooky attic.
This is the last one about witches for a while, we promise. Bewitched is an oldie but a goodie, and a series following a family of witches in the 1960s as one marries a mortal gives off major Chilling Adventures vibes. Or, should we say, Chilling Adventures's commitment to the '60s gives off big Bewitched energy. This charming time capsule feels warm and comforting in a way that only the classics can, not unlike the way a warm coffee hits your stomach when autumn chill first fills the air. Bewitched paved the way for Charmed and Sabrina: The Teenage Witch after it, making this series the matriarch of our favorite spellcasting fall series.
The Haunting of Hill House benefits from being a horror anthology series purposefully released in October, but the ghost story encapsulates fall because of more than just its spooktastic scares. The most talked-about new Netflix series of fall '18 shows the chill that can settle over late fall nights, and we're not just talking about the weather. A foggy evening, an old Victorian shelter from the cold, and a family just trying to stay together: what's more autumnal than that? That could be describing this unsettling horror story, or it could just be the unsettling horror story that is a family Thanksgiving.
There's no way around this one: MTV's anthology slasher series Scream is a Halloween-fest, through and through. Sure, its first two seasons are set in a small-town and its third follows a football star, two descriptors guaranteed to create some fall vibes, but the Ghostface killer mask has been a Halloween staple since the self-referential franchise began in the 1990s. We've got kids out here being murdered because of Halloween candy, a horror aficionado for a romantic lead and a literal Halloween special perfect for watching in a dark room with your best friends and a Jack O'Lantern filled with 3 Musketeers.
Autumn is the best time for baking, probably because it's finally cold enough outside that the thought of an oven warming up our house doesn't feel like the ninth circle of hell. Plus, now that we're committing to that layered sweater life, we can safely put on a little winter weight. Bring on those Thanksgiving pies! The Food Network has combined our fall love for baked goods and our national fervor for Halloween to create Halloween Wars, a baking competition show where contestants make spooky, Halloween-themed treats that look good enough to eat.
There are countless episodes of Scooby-Doo, made-for-TV movies, and a duo of high-quality live-action films starring scream queen Sarah Michelle Gellar and her hubbs Freddie Prinze Jr., but there's just something about the 1960s that always evokes fall foliage. Velma's orange turtleneck and the costumed villains help, too. We recommend Scooby-Doo and the Witch's Ghost for its Thanksgiving-tinged introduction to the Hex Girls, Supernatural's "Scoobynatural" episode for some spooky adult vibes, or Scooby-Doo and the Ghoul School for adorable child versions of your favorite movie monsters to get you in a fall mood, but you can't really go wrong with anything in the Scooby-verse.
Sure, Game of Thrones's seven kingdoms have all different types of climates, from the chilly Northern wall to Essos' constant summer, but the literal conceit of the show is that winter is coming. If winter finally arrives on season eight, justifying that ridiculously dark battle cinematography, that means seasons one through seven technically exist in their world's version of autumn because logically autumn is what directly precedes winter. This isn't so much a fall vibe as it is simple logic, but shots of medieval woodlands can still do the trick.
Briefly returning to witches, The CW's criminally short-lived drama The Secret Circle benefits from its coven of leading witches (and a few warlocks), but the series also actually takes place during the fall in an adorable small harbor town. Romantic moments happen in wooded forests amongst the sparkling morning dew, leading lady Cassie contends with back-to-school struggles, and ominous happenings engulf the coven's Halloween party. The Secret Circle, in classic CW fashion, is set against Vancouver's natural beauty, and Vampire Diaries author L.J. Smith, who wrote the Secret Circle novels, knows how to make a magic autumn come alive.
American Horror Story was always going to be associated with fall, like all horror anthologies are, but the series does deliver strong autumn aesthetics, especially since it started a September through November release schedule in 2016. Coven, the New Orleans-set season of the witch, Roanoke, a pilgrim-tinged North Carolinian tale, and Cult, an installment set following the November presidential election, stand out as the most autumnal of the series, but even dark horse years like Apocalypse and Murder House feel like fall.
How have we as a society collective forgotten Everwood? In an age of national nostalgia, it seems like no one ever talks about this picturesque WB soap, even in the midst of revival rumors. The Colorado setting was named one of TV Guide's favorite TV small towns because it "looks like it just stepped out of a Ralph Lauren fall catalog," and the leads' love for denim and plaid echoes changing leaves as much as it does Americana farmland. Come for a young Chris Pratt, Emily VanCamp, and Justin Baldoni, and stay for the PSL personified.
Pretty Little Liars was definitely spooky, but that's not why it makes such a great fall show. Rosewood is peak small-town charm when it isn't leaning into some Silent Hill vibes, probably because PLL filmed on the same set as Gilmore Girls, the most autumnal series of them all. A lot of the action also revolved around back-to-school problems, like realizing the hot guy you met at a bar is your new English teacher, re-enforcing the fall feels. Plus, most of Aria's outfits looked like Halloween costumes, anyway.
Remember how we mentioned that baking is a prime fall activity? There is no baking show that could rival The Great British Bake-Off, a series that manages to give off serious autumn vibes despite being exclusively set in the summer and winter. There's just something about a British summer that feels like an American fall — it's probably the cold. Watch as a bunch of super polite people support each other's baking goals, create decadent breads and pastries, and blend in with the British countryside. There are nine series of this worldwide phenomenon, each as charming as the last.
My So-Called Life was canceled way too soon and basically every website on the planet will tell you that. The Claire Danes and Jared Leto-led show begins as Angela Chase starts her sophomore year of high school in a 1994 fall, which is much more autumnal than a 2019 fall, clearly. The protagonist dyes her hair a nice autumn red and proceeds to go through her turbulent first semester in a series of increasingly adorable knitted jumpers. It's not ~all~ in the autumn, but technically, only five of the series's nineteen episodes are set in the winter, making this a 74% fall series.
Friday Night Lights takes place in the fall by definition because that's when football season happens. For those of us who look forward to the leaves changing because it means our favorite hometown heroes will be returning to the football field, nothing is more autumn-oriented than this beloved football series. The small rural town is total nature goals and the realistic high school setting inspires fall feelings in anyone who's nostalgic for those simpler times. Even if you don't come from a football town, you'll fall in love with this depiction of the yearly autumn tradition.
Like in The Secret Circle, L.J. Smith has created the perfect autumnal small town. The Vampire Diaries' titular vamps stalk around cemeteries with falling foliage, high school car washes, and gorgeous Antebellum estates for eight seasons, while the leaves are somehow eternally orange and the characters always seem to be going back-to-school. This vampire love story isn't just the television version of a cozy sweater because of its supernatural elements, it's because showrunner Julie Plec and company managed to create a setting that balanced modernity and history, love and loss, and the warm embrace of family.
There is no show like Gilmore Girls. All television small towns are just trying to recreate Stars Hollow, with its pilgrim parties, hay bale mazes, and knit-a-thons wrapped up in a perfect New England package. Something about East Coast WASPs is always a little autumnal no matter the season, and although Lorelai Gilmore was adamant about her love for a winter snow, Gilmore Girls was at its best when its characters were bingeing on candy during a movie marathon, drinking a hot cup of coffee at Luke's Diner, and strolling through the leaf-strewn town square.