You might think that you are watching everything worth watching, but trust us, there are some amazing underrated TV series out there. If you are stuck watching re-runs and channel (or Netflix)-surfing while you wait for the next episode of Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead, never fear! Screen Rant is here with twelve of the most underrated TV series still on the air.
Each one of these is not only deserving of far more love than it gets, but it’s just getting started, so you don’t have to worry about getting invested just to learn that there are no more episodes. And with everything from comedy to historical drama to horror, there is something here for everyone who is running out of viewing fodder.
Here are the 12 Most Underrated TV Shows On Right Now.
12. Episodes (Showtime, 2017)
Episodes has had a bit of a rocky time, first airing in 2011, but being taken off the air in 2013 and again in 2016. The series is now back for a fifth and final season, due to air next year, and it’s an absolute shame that the show didn’t gain more traction in its time in the sun.
Still, there’s time to catch up before the final season airs (and you know you won’t be making a long-term commitment to a new show!). The series follows a British husband and wife writer team Beverly (Tamsin Greig) and Sean (Stephen Mangan), who are invited to Hollywood to adapt their award-winning show for an American audience. The result is an absolutely hilarious look at life in the LA entertainment industry, with stand-out performances from everybody involved. The cherry on top is Matt LeBlanc, who plays himself cast as the lead in the new show – he’s a washed up celebrity and an absolute joy to watch.
11. The Americans (Wednesdays on FX)
Created by former CIA officer Joe Weisberg, The Americans is about a marriage as much as it’s about a pair of KGB agents deep undercover. Starring Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys as spy husband and wife team Elizabeth and Philip Jennings, the show is set in the Cold War-fueled 1980s as the two attempt to deal with the pressures of family life (along with their two kids) as well as trying to fit in in the suburbs of northern Virginia.
10. The Grinder (Tuesdays on Fox)
Alongside former Wonder Years star Fred Savage, Rob Lowe headlines this lighthearted legal comedy as Dean Sanderson, an actor returning to his home town and struggling to re-adjust. After a long-running stint as the star of show-within-a-show legal drama The Grinder, Dean has managed to convince himself that he actually knows something about the law, and should be able to work for his family’s practice – or even run it!
Lowe is his usual enthusiastic self, and the rest of the cast bring phenomenal energy and chemistry to the show, creating a twist on the traditional odd couple that can’t be missed. The Grinder is starting to gain critical approval, and is sure to keep improving – and it’s still only on its first season.
9. Broadchurch (Wednesdays on BBC America)
Season 3 of Broadchurch might not be on the air until next year, but that just gives you more time to catch up on the first two. Starring David Tennant and Olivia Colman, this crime drama revolves around the murder of a young boy in a small seaside town. Tennant plays Detective Inspector Alec Hardy, partnered with Colman’s Ellie Miller as the two attempt to solve the murder.
Much more than a simple whodunit, the series takes a deeper look at how the murder impacts everyone in the town, and the secrets that they keep. About as heart-wrenching as it gets, this is British drama at its best, and Tennant (as usual) gives a stellar performance. There is also a US adaptation, also starring Tennant, titled Gracepoint. However, that version lacked much of what made the original great, and ended after ten episodes.
8. Castle (Mondays on ABC)
Castle has been going for quite a bit longer than many of the entries on this list, as it started in 2009. However, even on its eighth season, this crime drama still isn’t getting the ratings love that it deserves.
Nathan Fillion stars as Richard ‘Rick’ Castle, the playboy novelist who ends up helping out the NYPD homicide division as research for his books. The series revolves around his relationship with Detective Kate Beckett (Stana Katic), as well as his teenage daughter and ex-starlet mother. The characters are the highlight of this show, rather than the storyline (although that’s never lacking). Fillion and Katic have fantastic banter, and the surrounding relationships are just as engaging. With ratings starting to rise, this may be gaining some recognition, and is well worth the time needed to catch up. With seven seasons already down, you better get to watching.
7. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (Mondays on The CW)
A quirky comedy about a woman seeking happiness, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is surprisingly charming – a fantastic light watch. The show stars Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Bunch, a high-powered lawyer with a plethora of issues (and prescriptions). Her life seems successful, but she’s just not happy. One day, she sees her summer camp boyfriend from when she was sixteen, and decides to change everything and chase the kind of happiness that she felt that summer.
She relocates to West Covina, California, where he lives, and attempts to rekindle the romance. While it sounds like a tired old look at a desperate single woman, the show is much more than that. Rebecca isn’t just a crazy ex, and the show is a sunny look with a deeper message about what success and happiness mean.
6. Outlander (Saturdays on Starz)
Based on the bestselling books by Diana Gabaldon, the Outlander series is headlined by the power duo of Caitriona Balfe as Claire and Sam Heughan as Jamie. Part historical epic, part time-travelling romance, the series starts when Claire is accidentally transported back in time to 18th century Scotland. There, she meets Jamie Fraser, and embarks on an incredible adventure.
Romance is definitely the central focus of the series, but it’s also worth watching just for the incredible beauty of the scenes. From the scenery of the Scottish Highlands to Claire’s breathtaking dresses, this is one of the most stunning shows on TV. There’s more to it than just the romance, though, and this is the perfect show for anyone who’s been feeling the loss of Downton Abbey (but wants a little more fantasy with their TV watching).
5. Love (Netflix Original)
Netflix is doing incredible things with its original programming, and Love is just the latest great show to come from the streaming service. Described as a “down to earth look at dating,” the series stars Gillian Jacobs and Paul Rust as Mickey and Gus – a couple attempting to navigate the madness that is modern relationships.
Although there is a lot of humor, the series has a lot of heart, and looks at many deeper issues than just the surface fluff of the dating scene. With mixed but largely positive reviews, this is sure to become another success to follow on the heels of other Netflix originals like The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Orange Is The New Black. Sweet, funny, and a little bit different, Love is the best new rom-com series to hit screens in a long time.
4. Z-Nation (Fridays on SyFy)
If you can’t get into The Walking Dead (or just don’t want to wade through six seasons to catch up), but you love zombies, Z-Nation is the perfect show for you. Three years into the zombie apocalypse, there is one known survivor who has been bitten by a zombie without turning into one themselves. It’s up to the core cast to get him from New York to the CDC in California, in the hopes of creating a cure.
Having an endpoint in mind is a refreshing change from the kind of meandering plotline that exists at the core of TWD, and with likeable characters and some tongue in cheek humor, it’s the perfect blend of gore and lightness. This is definitely one that deserves to step out of the shadow of The Walking Dead and develop a solid fanbase in its own right.
3. Silicon Valley (Sundays on HBO)
The third season of Silicon Valley is just about to start, so it’s the perfect time to get on board. Only two seasons in, this is one of the best new comedies on television. Set in California’s Silicon Valley and focused on the start-up boom, it follows six men as they found a company based around a new app. They become hugely successful at first, but success is hard for these guys to manage at times. The show is based on writer Mike Judge’s real life experiences in Silicon Valley as an engineer in the late 80s, and it is phenomenally sharp and funny. It’s received widespread critical acclaim, but somehow hasn’t managed to make it to the mainstream consciousness just yet.
2. Jane The Virgin (Mondays on The CW)
This quirky and uplifting comedy starts where a lot of other sitcoms finish – with a pregnancy. The twist is that Jane (Gina Rodriguez) is still a virgin when she gets knocked up! A distracted doctor and some mixed up files lead to a routine gyno appointment turning into artificial insemination – and a very confused Jane who has now got a baby on the way. A devout Catholic, she has been saving herself, and can’t bring herself to do anything but have the baby. As if that wasn’t enough, the father turns out to be the owner of the hotel where Jane works, as well as devastatingly handsome and an old crush of Jane’s.
Add to all that the drama surrounding the rest of her family, the father’s scheming wife, and the doctor’s relationship issues, and you have a complicated (but hilarious) show. Jane The Virgin is sweet, heartfelt, and puts a whole new spin on the classic romantic comedies. There’s a reason why Rodriguez took home the Best Actress win at the 2015 Golden Globes for her work in this series — she’s dynamite.
1. iZombie (Tuesdays on The CW)
The CW is doing amazing things with comic book adaptations at the moment, and iZombie is a perfect example of one that deserves far more love than it gets. Based on the Vertigo comic by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred, the show follows Liv Moore (Rose McIver), a med student turned zombie. Willing to think outside of the box, after she realizes that she needs to eat brains in order to survive, she takes a job with the coroner’s office to gain access to dead bodies (rather than killing people).
With her thirst for flesh under control, she tries to get on with life, but everything has changed now that she’s dead. As an added twist, Liv learns that the brains she eats allow her to access the memories of the person who they used to belong to – so obviously, she uses this ability to help solve murder cases. It may sound a little out there, and it is – but in the best possible way. McIver is absolutely incredible as Liv, and there is the perfect balance of horror and humor to make anyone happy.
Which of these shows are you currently hooked on? Did we miss any of your underrated favorites? Sound off in the comments section!
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