The 10 Best TV Shows of 2024 (So Far)

Beautiful settings. Great performances. The small-screen year is off to a flying start

If this is the end of “Peak TV” it was hard to tell.

We’ve already had a Q1 that blasted out amazing shows into our yearning eye holes. Seriously, this is a “Ten Best” list, and it’s not even May.

We’ve got three more quarters of TV to look forward to with shows like “Squid Game,” “House of Dragons” and “The Boys” still to come.

The best shows of 2024 (so far) in descending order… (Minor Spoilers Ahead)

‘Tokyo Vice’ (MAX)

The second season of the Michael Mann-produced series, based on an American journalist working as a crime reporter for a Tokyo newspaper in the 1990s, has been stellar.

First of all, the actual reporting: Yakuza crime lords are coming to the U.S. and buying organ transplants is still shocking. This was mostly livers due to the heavy use of traditionally done tattoo work and drinking. That in itself is just bonkers.

Tokyo Vice Season 2 | Official Trailer | Max

Second, the relationship between Joshua Lawrence “Jake” Adelstein (Ansel Elgort, who can now speak fluent Japanese) and his contact on the Tokyo Vice Squad Hiroto Katagiri (Ken Watanabe) forms into a real partnership this season.

Samatha San (Rachel Keller) and her relationship with a rising Yakuza lieutenant Sato (Shô Kasamatsu) continued to evolve into interesting territory but it’s the sheer badass terror of rival Yakuza boss Tozawa (Ayumi Tanida) that makes this show the best thing on television so far.

‘Expats’ (Prime) 

The superb source material, “The Expatriates: A Novel” by Janice Y.K. Lee, is partly why this show is go good. Next, add well-rendered characters like Margaret (Nicole Kidman) a woman who has suddenly tragically lost her youngest child.


  • The recently hired nanny Mercy (Ji-young Yoo) who in an instant of distraction puts in motion the unfolding tragedy.
  • The long-suffering husband Clarke (Brian Tee) who reaches out to faith to help balance his life.
  • The neighbor Hillary Starr (Saraya Blue) who is wrestling with an alcoholic and unfaithful husband David Starr (Jack Houston) and her choice not to have children.

This show is about the challenge of raising kids, dealing with tragedy and choosing not to have children. Set it anywhere on earth, and it would be a compelling drama. The Hong Kong locales elevate this show into the sublime. The city is a character of force from the busy streets, rain and traffic.

It’s amazing when the director just turns the cameras on Hong Kong and lets it roll.

‘Fallout’ (Prime)

The last video game I played was “L.A. Noir” on a PS4. I got stuck and didn’t bother to find a cheat code.

I’ve never played any of the “Fallout” titles and knew next to nothing about this show before it dropped. I understood it had to do something with zombies and a post-apocalyptic landscape in a kind of AtomPunk universe.

That was the extent of my knowledge.

Oh, and of course I knew the leads: Ella Purnell (“Bittersweet,” “Yellow Jackets”) Walton Goggins (“Justified”), and Kyle MacLachlan (“Twin Peaks”).

Fallout - Official Trailer | Prime Video

I couldn’t have been more surprised how much I loved this show. I’m sure I missed a ton of Easter eggs and knowing nods to the source material, but this show isn’t just for insiders; this is fantastic world building and interesting characters with a tale lifted straight out of “Catch-22” (one of my favorite all-time books)

‘3 Body Problem’ (Netflix)

I read the first book of the source material’s trilogy but found the writing tedious, the math over my head and the story dull.

This show took everything good about the book and elevated it to the next level. They managed do something that hasn’t been done since the “Alien” franchise. Make aliens actually scary.

Which is even more remarkable when you consider we never actually see the aliens in question, only their human avatars.

The books and show have something important to say about technology and how innovative humans can be when we put our minds to something. That’s all fine and good, but “3 Body Problem” clicks because it has a depth of emotion. We come to care about the people involved (flaws and all) and that is what turns the rather bland source material into something worth watching.

‘Supersex’ (Netflix)

Okay, the title alone is going to be a barrier for some along with the subject matter – the life of porn star Rocco Siffredi. That’s fine. That it has moments that are sexually graphic will give many watching the vapors.

Everyone else will be pleasantly surprised by a tender and terribly sad show about a poor Italian family living in a small coastal town and the two brothers who do their best to get out of their limited circumstances.

The show turns out to have more to say about love, family, brotherhood than sex and porn. 
Hint… love wins in the end.

‘Monsieur Spade’ (AMC)

I loved this show and really hope they do a second season.

Clive Owen is Sam Spade, the American detective now living in the South of France. He’s wealthy and living in peace (having inherited a French estate from his beloved and now passed wife) when his past shows up to haunt him.


She’s a child named Teresa (Cara Bossom) who is the daughter of Brigid O’Shaughnessy (previously played by Mary Astor). Yup, that Brigid from Spade’s most famous case, “The Maltese Falcon” and it only gets better from there.

The story deftly incorporates the French war in Algeria and the questionable use of special forces. You might think none of that can work, but it does so brilliantly.

‘Avatar’ (Netflix)

There isn’t a way to capture the pure magic of the original animation, but they did a fantastic job all the same. If you haven’t watched “Avatar: The Last Airbender” animated series you should watch it, too.

Give “Avatar” a few episodes, and you’ll see some of the best storytelling in terms of character arcs in recent memory. As I share with people, “’Avatar’ is the ‘Star Wars’ story we deserved but never got!”

It’s that good.

‘Ripley’ (Netflix)

I have never read the books by Patricia Highsmith and frankly didn’t like the movie with Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jude Law. I had zero interest in this when it dropped on Netflix a few weeks ago.

Two things changed my mind: Andrew Scott (“Fleabag,” “Sherlock”) is a great actor, and he’s just fascinating to watch tear into this dual role of being both Dickie Greenleaf and Tom Ripley.

Ripley | Official Trailer | Netflix

Plus, the show is an absolute love letter to Italy. The black and white photography highlights everything amazing about Italian architecture. 
If “Expats” makes you yearn to be in Hong Kong, “Ripley” will make you yearn for Italy.

‘The Gentlemen’ (Netflix)

Pure fun.

‘Shogun’ (FX)

The remake of the 1980 miniseries is fantastic. Acting. Costumes. Locations. I’m not finished yet with the first season, but I’m really enjoying it… so far.

Shōgun - Official Trailer | Hiroyuki Sanada, Cosmo Jarvis, Anna Sawai | FX

How about you? What have you watched and loved so far this year?


  1. The anime Spy x Family just finished season 2 at the end of 2023, but I hadn’t heard of it until the movie came into theaters in 2024. For anime fans, this one seems to be taking the internet by storm.

    Set in an AU Cold War city, master spy Loid Forger’s next mission requires a fake family and a kid enrolled in a fancy academy…all for the sake of world piece. Yor Briar agrees to be his wife, all to hide her own alias as a nighttime assassin. Their arrangement benefits both parties but neither parent can hide their true identities from newly-adopted Anya, a telepathic child, who wants to help “Papa on his missions” when she’s not in Eden Academy.

    It’s full of suspense, drama, and humor. Loid and Yor get into all sorts of shinangians trying to be a “normal” family alongside their professional/killing jobs, but what’s really throwing a monkey wrench in their plans is Anya, since she knows exactly what their thinking but doesn’t want them to discover *her* secret. So it has the superhero family plot similar to “Incredibles” with the added challenge of everyone’s secrets from each other. Nevertheless, the Forgers *are* good parents who raise Anya well and gradually develop respect and affection for each other. Peeling back the layers of Loid’s past, we learn about his deep-rooted trauma after surviving a war, which further fuels his drive to give Anya the life he never had.

  2. Shogun update:

    I finished the series. I have to review it in 2 ways:

    If you’ve never seen the original or read the novel it’s a 6/10. There’s stuff to like, but it gets worse with each episode and the ending couldn’t be any worse.

    If you’ve seen the original, it’s a 4/10. It does some stories that original didn’t, but the acting, sets, pacing, and conclusion are pretty bad compared to the original.

    If you’ve read the book it’s a 2/10. just view it as a comedy and have a few drinks while viewing. There’s little to like.

  3. Fallout is a really good series, although the games are way more cool. And yes, there’s TONS of content in the show that references all of the Fallout games, it adheres very closely to it, (no doubt due to the direct involvement of Fallout franchise game developer Todd Howard).

  4. Only made it halfway through Shogun. The POC peeing on the whiter people was too much like the current day Dem Party.

    1. Funny you mention that, it’s actually an important plot point in the novel and original. I read a review from some woke ding bat that said something like: Oh great, another white savior show. Where are all the Africans? The first reply was: It’s 1600 Japan, soooo, in Africa!

  5. I, too, saw the original as a kid and really enjoyed it. This remake is visually better (CGI) but I agree with KT that the pace is, at times, tough to stick with. It is really drawn out in some episodes where you actually aren’t sure what’s going on or who is who. I realize that allows the series to get more episodes per season but there is a point where you are killing the interest in a couple of episodes.

    1. I was kinda glad they put most of the “Willow Women” stuff in ep 6. Even the novel bogs down from around chapters 39-45 or so with that plot line. I went into this knowing that Covid 1984 prevented them from filming in Japan and the green screen stuff would probably get old. Over all though, it’s better than most stuff in recent years. At least Mariko didn’t break out a light saber and bust into a rap about “Not needin’ no man” lol!

  6. Looks like NETFLIX was favored here. Tokyo Vice, Fallout absolutely great shows. I am still on the fence with Monsieur Spade. I could not get into it, Might need to give it another go as I love that genre of TV show.
    I would also include these shows as well.
    “Sugar”- AppleTV. Colin Farrel is superb in this crime drama
    “The Big Door Prize”- AppleTV Season 2 is great. Funny comedy with scifi bend to it.

  7. Shogun has been bitter sweet. I saw the original as a kid and it pulled me in and never let go. But, after reading the massive novel, it’s neat that the remake focuses on stories left out of the original. Some of the scenes are more accurate to the book, others are head scratchers. The pacing is a little weird, and the green screen bugs the eyes out after a while. And the lush evergreen forests of Japanada lose me a bit, lol. But the acting is good to great, I like Yabu the most and Mariko the least, but it’s all pretty good. I have 3 more episodes to go. I had to take a break after episode 6, that was a chore to get through.

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