The new TV we're most excited for in 2022

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Pam & Tommy, Kenobi and a new take on Lord of the Rings will arrive in 2022 (Disney/Warner Bros.)
Pam & Tommy, Kenobi and a new take on Lord of the Rings will arrive in 2022 (Disney/Warner Bros.)

True-life crime drama, a new Star Wars project, multiple Marvel shows, plus Ant and Dec have a dizzying jackpot on offer.

It’s the 22 best TV shows to look forward to in 2022.

Anatomy of a Scandal (Netflix)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 13: Sienna Miller attends The 2021 Met Gala Celebrating In America: A Lexicon Of Fashion at Metropolitan Museum of Art on September 13, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images)
Sienna Miller attends The 2021 Met Gala (Theo Wargo/Getty Images)

Sienna Miller and Michelle Dockery are to star in this London-set six-part thriller about sexual consent and privilege, based on the bestselling novel by Sarah Vaughan, from David E Kelley (Big Little Lies).

Read more: The best TV of 2021

The plotline centres on a scandal that rocks the Westminster political elite and charts the experiences of the women caught up in events. As revelations come out in court, lives and careers are set to be inexorably changed.

Ant and Dec’s Limitless Win (ITV)

In a new quiz that’s sure to appeal to risk-takers, Ant and Dec are to launch the world’s first-ever limitless jackpot. What this means in practice is that contestants will be seen climbing a money ladder that never comes to an end. But a wrong answer looks set to result in them crashing out of the game and losing all the cash that’s been accrued. Prepare for nerves to be shredded each Saturday night when the show launches this winter.

Conversations with Friends (BBC)

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 09:  Sasha Lane attends the New York premiere of
Sasha Lane attends the New York premiere of "Hellboy" (Photo by Taylor Hill/WireImage)

Sally Rooney’s Normal People was one of the major breakout TV successes of the first lockdown back in 2020, and to mark the return of BBC Three as a linear channel, the broadcaster has adapted her debut novel. Newcomer Alison Oliver and Loki actress Sasha Lane star as student Frances and her friend Bobbi, two performers of spoken word poetry who find their lives complicated by journalist Melissa, who wants to help boost their profile.

The Curse (Channel 4)

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 11:  (L-R) Steve Stamp, Allan Mustafa aka MC Grindah, Hugo Chegwin and Asim Chaudhry aka Chabuddy G arrive at The BRIT Awards 2021 at The O2 Arena on May 11, 2021 in London, England.  (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)
(L-R) Steve Stamp, Allan Mustafa, Hugo Chegwin and Asim Chaudhry arrive at The BRIT Awards 2021 (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)

We’re heading back to the early 1980s for this London-set crime comedy that sees a band of hapless crooks — including Steve Stamp, Allan Mustafa, Hugo Chegwin (People Just Do Nothing) — get unwittingly involved in one of the biggest gold heists in history in this fictionalised yarn loosely inspired by real-life events.

Read more: The most controversial TV moments of 2021

Writer and star Tom Davis reunites with his Murder in Successville and King Gary creative partner James De Frond for this caper about a naïve gang biting off more than they can possibly chew.

Harry Potter 20th anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (Sky Max/Showcase)

First look at Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, and Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (2021 Warner Media)
First look at Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, and Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (2021 Warner Media)

It’s been 20 years since the release of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, so to mark the occasion, stars Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, as well as director Chris Columbus will be among those celebrating at the Warner Bros Studio London. The retrospective – set to be screened on New Year’s Day - has already received sizeable press attention because writer JK Rowling has not been invited along to mark the occasion.

The Ipcress File (ITV)

Joe Cole as Harry Palmer in The Ipcress File. (Altitude TV/ITV)
Joe Cole as Harry Palmer in The Ipcress File. (Altitude TV/ITV)

Peaky Blinders actor Joe Cole has taken on the role that turned Michael Caine Icon into a screen icon: bespectacled espionage operative Harry Palmer. Set against the backdrop of Cold War Europe, the six-part thriller adapted from the book by Len Deighton, finds the law catching up with corrupt British army sergeant Palmer and convincing him to become a spy in order to avoid a jail sentence. But the case to which he’s assigned brings danger with it.

Untitled The Lord of the Rings series (Amazon Prime Video)

Amazon Studios’ forthcoming series brings to screens for the very first time the heroic legends of the fabled Second Age of Middle-earth's history. (Amazon)
Amazon Studios’ forthcoming series brings to screens for the very first time the heroic legends of the fabled Second Age of Middle-earth's history. (Amazon)

Amazon Studios’ forthcoming series brings the heroic legends of the fabled Second Age of Middle-earth's history to screens for the very first time. This epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and stars Morfydd Clark as Galadriel. It's rumoured to be the most expensive TV show ever made, so expectations are sky high for this expansion of the beloved fantasy series.

The Love Box in Your Living Room (BBC)

Tom Baker in character as Dr Who with Daleks, BBC Tlevision Centre, London, 1974. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)
Tom Baker in character as Doctor Who with Daleks, BBC Television Centre, London, 1974. (Photo by Michael Putland/Getty Images)

The centenary of the BBC will be marked with a number of bespoke programmes, among them this romp through 100 years of the corporation’s history by comedians Paul Whitehouse and Harry Enfield. Also in production: Konnie Huq celebrating the best of Children’s Programming and an examination by David Dimbleby on the impact of the BBC on people’ lives, as well as special episodes of Strictly, Doctor Who and Top Gear.

Moon Knight/She Hulk/Ms. Marvel (Disney+)

The title treatment for Moon Knight (Disney)
The title treatment for Moon Knight (Disney)

After a stellar first year run for Marvel Studios' Disney+ shows, which included WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, What If, and Hawkeye, the MCU has three more series confirmed for 2022 so far. Moon Knight boasts Oscar Isaac as a complex vigilante who suffers from dissociative identity disorder. She-Hulk introduces Tatiana Maslany as She-Hulk/Jennifer Walters, a lawyer who specialises in superhuman-oriented legal cases, while Ms Marvel introduces Kamala Khan—a 16-year-old Pakistani American from Jersey City.

No Return (ITV)

Sheridan Smith performing during the commemorations for the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day landings at Southsea Common in Portsmouth.
Sheridan Smith performing during the commemorations for the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day landings (PA)

Themes of parental guilt and consent come up for examination in this Sheridan Smith-starring drama that finds an unassuming family caught up in a living nightmare while holidaying in Turkey. Smith plays Kathy, whose son Noah accepts a seemingly innocent invitation to a beach party. But when the boy is arrested, the Brits abroad find themselves battling an expensive and alien legal system, as well as mounting media coverage.

Obi-Wan Kenobi (Disney+)

The title treatment for Obi-Wan Kenobi (Disney)
The title treatment for Obi-Wan Kenobi (Disney)

The latest expansion to the Star Wars franchise will see Ewan McGregor return to the role of the Jedi Master for a new series that takes place a decade on from the events of Revenge of the Sith. We last saw Kenobi endure a stark defeat: the corruption of Anakin Skywalker who turned into merciless Sith Lord Darth Vader. And, yes, Hayden Christensen is also returning to play the evil man in the mask.

Pam and Tommy (Disney+)

Pam and Tommy will stream on Star on Disney+ (Disney/HULU)
Pam and Tommy will stream on Star on Disney+ (Disney/HULU)

This American biographical drama of the outrageous untold story of the world’s first viral video – the sex tape of Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson played by Sebastian Stan and Lily James - promises to be an outrageous viewing experience.

Pistol (Disney+)

Top: A first look image from Danny Boyle's Pistol (L-R) Christian Lees as original bassist Glen Matlock, Anson Boon as singer John Lydon and Toby Wallace as guitarist Steve Jones.
 
(Disney+)
Top: A first look image from Danny Boyle's Pistol (L-R) Christian Lees as original bassist Glen Matlock, Anson Boon as singer John Lydon and Toby Wallace as guitarist Steve Jones. (Disney+)

Based on Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones’ 2018 memoir, Lonely Boy: Tales from a Sex Pistol, this new limited series from Danny Boyle presents a fascinating new perspective on one of rock’s greatest ever stories.

Reacher (Amazon Prime Video)

Tom Cruise brought writer Lee Child’s hero to life in two movies, but there weren’t many who considered the actor to be what they’d envisaged Jack Reacher to be like when reading the books. Now, in what’s likely to be a more accurate dramatisation, the hulking Alan Ritchson is to play the former military police investigator in a new series based on Child’s first Reacher thriller The Killing Floor, which is set to commence on 4 February.

The Reckoning (BBC)

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 27: Actor Steve Coogan attends the Film Independent Screening Series of
Actor Steve Coogan, 2020 in Hollywood, California. (Amanda Edwards/Getty Images)

How did the sexual abuse perpetrated by Jimmy Savile manage to stay hidden until after the broadcaster’s death? Writer Jeff Pope – who previously penned true-crime dramas The Moorside and Appropriate Adult - gets to grips with this emotive issue in a project that BBC drama boss Piers Wenger says will tell this hideous story with “the utmost respect”. Steve Coogan is to play Savile as he rises to fame through the dance halls of northern England.

Starstruck (ITV)

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 23: Olly Murs attends ITV Palooza! at The Royal Festival Hall on November 23, 2021 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
Olly Murs attends ITV Palooza!, 2021 (Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

After months of online chatter, the series being touted as Stars in Their Eyes for a new generation is finally confirmed for 2022 on ITV. The concept sees members of the public transformed into music icons such as Ariana Grande and Michael Buble. But rather than performing solo, they’ll have to sing as part of a trio and impress such judges as Sheridan Smith and Beverley Knight if they’re to win a £50,0000 prize pot. Olly Murs hosts.

This Is Going to Hurt (BBC)

Ben Whishaw as Adam in This Is Going To Hurt (Sister/Anika Molnar/BBC)
Ben Whishaw as Adam in This Is Going To Hurt (Sister/Anika Molnar/BBC)

Adam Kay’s memoir about his experiences during medical training became a word-of-mouth hit following its publication in 2017. Now, actor Ben Whishaw is to bring those struggles on the NHS frontline to life in a seven-part adaptation that Kay is hoping will make BBC1 viewers “laugh, cry and vomit”. Expect the pressures to mount as the screen version of Adam tries to rise through the ranks of the hospital hierarchy.

The Tourist (BBC)

Programme Name: The Tourist - TX: 01/01/2022 - Episode: Genric (No. n/a) - Picture Shows:  The Man (JAMIE DORNAN) - (C) Two Brothers Pictures - Photographer: Ian Routledge
Jamie Dornan in The Tourist (Two Brothers Pictures/Ian Routledge)

Jamie Dornan will ensure that January gets off to a mysterious start when he stars as The Man, a Brit who finds himself run off the road by a tanker in the Australian outback, only to then wake in hospital with no memory of who he is. The six-part series has been created by Harry and Jack Williams, a pair who know a thing or two about leftfield surprises, having previously been the brains behind The Missing and Baptiste.

Trigger Point (ITV)

Vicky McClure and Adrian Lester play bomb disposal operatives known as ‘Expos’ in ITV’s six-part thriller series Trigger Point (ITV)
Vicky McClure and Adrian Lester play bomb disposal operatives known as ‘Expos’ in ITV’s six-part thriller series Trigger Point (ITV)

ITV is already hyping this high-octane thriller with a vengeance – and who can blame them? After all, it has big links to Line of Duty (Jed Mercurio is an executive producer and Vicky McClure one of its stars), while the concept itself appears explosive, focused as it is on the work of the Metropolitan Police Bomb Disposal Squad. Also featuring in the tense six-parter are Adrian Lester, Warren Brown and Kerry Godliman.

Willow (Disney+)

(Credit: Lucasfilm)
(Credit: Lucasfilm)

Warwick Davis returns in this new series inspired by the classic Lucasfilm fantasy film. The supporting cast included Ruby Cruz (Mare of Easttown), Erin Kellyman (The Falcon and The Winter Soldier), Ellie Bamber (The Serpent), Tony Revolori (Spider-Man: No Way Home), Amar Chadha Patel (The Third Day) and Dempsey Bryk (The Birch).

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