Summer TV 2024 preview: 18 shows we're pumped to watch & full release schedule

People watching TV on the beach
(Image credit: Getty Images)

In between the vacations and BBQs, most nights during the summer we still need something good to watch on TV. The good news is US TV is not going to be short on options to choose from.

While the broadcast networks are turning to game shows and reality programs to help fill their slates out while their dramas and comedies prepare for new seasons, streamers and cable are set to bring plenty of new and returning scripted shows to air if that is what you're looking for. While we're sticking to those areas mostly in this guide, let's not forget that for two weeks starting in late July we're going to have the 2024 Summer Olympics from Paris to keep us entertained.

Below you'll find the full US summer TV schedule so you know exactly when and on what channel shows are premiering, but let us help raise your awareness on some of the show's we are most excited for this summer, as the What to Watch team has picked 18 shows we can't wait to start watching.

WTW staff picks

Masterchef Generations (May 29)

Host/judge Gordon Ramsay with judges Aarón Sánchez and Joe Bastianich in MasterChef Generations

(Image credit: FOX)

There are cooking competition and then there are Gordon Ramsey cooking competitions. This year, MasterChef Generations will be turning up the heat by pitting talented chefs across four different generations against each other to determine the big winner. Contestants will represent Millennials, Baby Boomers, Gen X and Gen Y. By the end of the show we'll see which generation can keep cool under pressure and walk away with $250,000, a shiny trophy and the title of MasterChef Champion. — Sarabeth Pollock

Below Deck Mediterranean season 9 (June 3)

Captain Sandy Yawn and Chief Stew Aesha Scott in Below Deck Mediterranean season 9

(Image credit: Fred Jagueneau/Bravo)

It's time to set sail once again with Captain Sandy and the crew of the Motor Yacht Mustique in Below Deck Mediterranean season 9. Not only do I love the Bravo reality series for the intense drama amongst the crew on the high seas and poorly behaving guests who keep the crew on their toes, but I love seeing all of the places the boat ends up. This year, the show is heading to Greece, which will no doubt provide some stunning landscapes as a background to whatever is going on aboard the yacht.  — Sarabeth Pollock

The Acolyte (June 4)

Lee Jung-Jae in The Acolyte

Lee Jung-Jae in The Acolyte (Image credit: Christian Black/Lucasfilm Ltd)

I'll be honest, I've had my fill of the Skywalkers and their adjacent characters. I'm ready to explore another corner of the Star Wars galaxy and timeline, which is why I'm pumped to give The Acolyte a try this summer. Set long before any of the characters we're familiar with entered the picture, this mixes Star Wars and crime drama as a Jedi master investigates a murder by someone he has a past connection with. The fact that Sleeping with Other People and Russian Doll creator Leslye Headland hasn't done anything like this before intrigues me as well, as we get some truly fresh thinking into a franchise in some need of it. — Michael Balderston

Clipped (June 4) 

Laurence Fishburne, Ed O’Neill and Jacki Weaver as Doc Rivers, Donald Sterling and Shelly talking in Clipped

Laurence Fishburne, Ed O'Neill and Jacki Weaver in Clipped (Image credit: FX/Hulu)

As both an NBA fan and a fan of basketball-inspired dramas like Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, I can't wait to watch the limited series Clipped. The show follows the story of former LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling and his infamous fall from grace when audio recordings surfaced of him making racially offensive remarks. The real-life drama of the incident was dramatic enough, so I can only imagine what’s in store with a Hollywood spin. Plus, there's something intriguing about seeing Laurence Fishburne portray NBA championship coach Doc Rivers. — Terrell Smith

Queenie (June 7)

Dionne Brown as Queenie and Michelle Greenidge as Aunty Maggie in Queenie

Dionne Brown and Michelle Greenidge in Queenie (Image credit: Latoya Okuneye/Lionsgate)

Watching the trailer for Queenie, I was instantly reminded of the sleeper-hit comedy, Chewing Gum starring Michaela Coel, which I found quite fascinating. Queenie is somewhat of a dark comedy about a Jamaican British woman living in London attempting to navigate her love and family dynamics, while also trying to just figure out life for herself. The latter task is hard enough in real life, so I look forward to the comedic spin of the series. — Terrell Smith

Love Island USA season 6 (June 11)

Ariana Madix in key art for Love Island USA season 6

Ariana Madix on Love Island USA season 6 (Image credit: Peacock)

Love Island USA has become sort of a guilty summer pleasure for me over the last couple of years. I started watching when the series picked up with season 4 on Peacock, and now I can't stop. There aren't award-winning scripts, tear-jerking performances or occasions that will compel you to give a standing ovation. However, it has rollercoaster romances and must-watch challenges. Plus, Love Island USA season 6 has Ariana Madix from Vanderpump Rules to host. — Terrell Smith

The Boys season 4 (June 13)

Anthony Starr as Homelander in The Boys

Anthony Starr in The Boys (Image credit: Amazon Studios)

Like Star Wars, superhero fare can't just be the usual type stuff from Marvel and DC to get me pumped any more, I'm looking for more of an edge. That's why I'm stoked for the return of The Boys. This highly violent supe satire has been pure entertainment from the start, and with The Boys season 4 promising an even more unhinged Homelander (Anthony Starr) and a desperate Billy (Karl Urban) set to go head to head, I don't expect that to change with this batch of episodes. — Michael Balderston

Bridgerton season 3 part 2 (June 13)

Nicola Coughlan as Penelope Featherington in Bridgerton season 2.

(Image credit: Liam Daniel/Netflix)

Dearest Gentle Reader, I can't help but admit that I am addicted to all of the drama of the Ton and after that carriage ride at the end (if you know, you know!) of the first four episodes of Bridgerton season 3, I have to know what happens next. With the quest to unmask Lady Whistledown threatening Penelope Featherington's chances at her happy ever after with Colin Bridgerton, well, let's just say the Ton has never been so thrilling and I'm ready to see how Pen and Colin's story develops.  — Sarabeth Pollock

Hotel Cocaine (June 16)

Danny Pino in Hotel Cocaine

Danny Pino in Hotel Cocaine (Image credit: MGM Plus)

I’m a sucker for a crime drama, and Hotel Cocaine follows the story of Roman Compte, who was the general manager of a hotel that served as the epicenter of the Miami cocaine scene in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Having watched Netflix's Griselda earlier this year, I think the new series may be a good companion piece considering Griselda was a queenpin in Miami around that time. — Terrell Smith

House of the Dragon season 2 (June 16)

Dragon in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: Courtesy of HBO)

While it isn't exactly Sophie's Choice, I was going back and forth on whether I was more excited for House of the Dragon season 2 or The Rings of Power season 2. I liked both fantasy series a lot when they debuted in 2022, and actually preferred Rings of Power for being something different. But as for these two new seasons, the fact that we're getting a full-fledged dragon war (something we never saw in Game of Thrones) in House of the Dragon swayed me. Though with the two shows not overlapping as much this time, each should have their moment. — Michael Balderston

Orphan Black: Echoes (June 23)

Krysten Ritter in Orphan Black: Echoes

(Image credit: AMC)

The Clone Club is back in Orphan Black: Echoes. This time around, Krysten Ritter plays Lucy, a woman who has been through a lot in her life. All she wants is to figure out where she belongs in the world, but her past keeps colliding with her future in the most unimaginable ways. She has a supportive boyfriend, Jack (Avan Jogia), who is dedicated to helping her, but they have no idea how much the odds are stacked against them. I'm really excited to be back in the Orphan Black world; it was an innovative series when it debuted in 2013 and I can't imagine where the show will go now, especially with all of the real-world advances we've seen in science in the past decade. — Sarabeth Pollock

The Bear season 3 (June 27)

The Bear season 3

(Image credit: FX)

The meteoric rise of The Bear has been incredible. Over the last two summers it has completely enthralled audiences with depicting this group of friends, family and chefs as they attempt to turn around their struggling Chicago restaurant. It has quickly claimed 10 Emmys and a spot on WTW's 100 best TV shows of all time list, so of course we are going to feature The Bear season 3 on our most anticipated shows of summer 2024. After pulling off the near impossible to convert their sandwich shop into a fine dining venue, can they beat the odds and stay open? It will be another hectic and entertaining time with the cousins this summer. — Michael Balderston

All American: Homecoming season 3 (July 8)

Geffri Maya as Simone Hicks smiling in All American: Homecoming

Geffri Maya in All American: Homecoming (Image credit: The CW)

After being off the air for over a year, largely due to the actor's and writer's strikes in Hollywood, All American: Homecoming season 3 finally debuts this summer. I've been waiting for a while to find out who Simone (Geffri Maya) decides to be with. Will she choose Damon (Peyton Alex Smith), a guy she's been attracted to since she arrived at Bringston? Or will she go with new love interest Lando (Martin Bobb-Semple), who seems to get the woman she's becoming? Personally, I'm rooting for the latter. — Terrell Smith

Big Brother season 26 (July 17)

Julie Chen Moonves on Big Brother

(Image credit: Courtesy of CBS)

Houseguests, get ready for another summer filled with twists and turns as a new group of contestants enter the Big Brother house to see who can outlast everyone else and take home the big cash prize at the end. To get to the end, they'll have to survive plot twists, deceit, lies, colorful competitions and visits from Zing Bot, and we'll have full access to all the action between primetime episodes and the 24/7 live feeds that offer a glimpse of what's happening in the house. — Sarabeth Pollock

Unprisoned season 2 (July 17) 

Delroy Lindo and Kerry Washington as Edwin and Paige hugging in UnPrisoned

Delroy Lindo and Kerry Washington in Unprisoned (Image credit: Kelsey McNeal/Hulu)

Unprisoned season 1 was a pleasant surprise. I had no idea how well leads Kerry Washington and Delroy Lindo would pair together in a comedy. If you haven't tuned in yet, the series follows a woman trying to reconnect with her absentee father as he gets released from prison. By the end of the season, the father got into a little bit of trouble, so I'm looking forward to seeing what happens with him next in Unprisoned season 2. — Terrell Smith

Lady in the Lake (July 19)

Natalie Portman and Moses Ingram in Lady in the Lake

Natalie Portman and Moses Ingram in Lady in the Lake (Image credit: Apple TV)

Apple TV Plus is leaning heavy into crime dramas this summer with shows like Jake Gyllenhaal/David E. Kelley's Presumed Innocent and the Vince Vaughn/Bill Lawrence series Bad Monkey. But forced to choose, I'm going with Lady in the Lake, an adaptation of the Laura Lippman novel by Alma Ha'rel (Honey Boy) and starring Natalie Portman in her first TV leading role. The mystery sees Portman star as a 1960s woman with dreams to become an investigative journalist who dives head first into a mysterious death that rocks her city. Some great talents combining for what could be a gripping summer TV drama. — Michael Balderston

Emily in Paris season 4 part 1 (August 15)

Emily In Paris Lily Collins as Emily in episode 305 of Emily In Paris Cr Stphanie BranchuNetflix 2022

(Image credit: Netflix)

It has been a minute since the massive cliffhanger of the Emily in Paris season 3 finale that left fans on the edge of their seats. Emily in Paris season 4 will finally deliver some answers to our burning questions. Who does Emily (Lily Collins) end up with? Who is the father of Camille's bab? And will their lives ever be the same after all of the revelations that came about at the wedding? So many burning questions! The show arrives as the Paris Olympics wrap up, so you'll be able to keep the fun times in France flowing even longer. — Sarabeth Pollock

Only Murders in the Building season 4 (August 27)

Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez in Only Murders in the Building

Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez in Only Murders in the Building (Image credit: Hulu)

Whenever Only Murders in the Building is on, you can bet I'll be watching. This is probably my favorite show of the last few years, as the trio of Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez are perfect as a crime-solving team. And in Only Murders in the Building season 4 things are bigger than ever as they leave not just the Arconia but New York City for a sojourn in Hollywood to mingle with stars (Meryl Streep is returning, plus there are new guest stars in Eva Longoria, Molly Shannon, Eugene Levy, Kumail Nanjiani, Zack Galifianakis, Richard Kind and Melissa McCarthy). But the mystery is still the thing, as we all want to know who killed Sazz (Jane Lynch)?

Those are our picks, but there are plenty more shows that are going to premiere over the next few months that will appeal to a wide array of interests. See what catches your eye with our complete 2024 summer TV schedule, from Memorial Day to the end of August:

May TV releases

Monday, May 27

  • Fallen Idols: Nick and Aaron Carter (ID/Max)
  • Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted (National Geographic)
  • The Great War (History)
  • House of Horrors: Secrets of College Greek Life (A&E)

Tuesday, May 28

Wednesday, May 29

  • Camden (Hulu)
  • Forged in Fire season 11 (History)
  • Masterchef Generations (Fox)

Thursday, May 30

Friday, May 31

  • Celebrity Family Food Battle (The Roku Channel)
  • Couples Therapy (Paramount Plus with Showtime; June 2 on Showtime)
  • The Famous Five (Hulu)
  • Frog and Toad season 2 (Apple TV Plus)
  • Gold Rush: Parker's Trail season 7 (Discovery Channel)
  • The Great Lillian Hall (HBO)
  • The Outlaws season 3 (Prime Video)

June TV releases

Saturday, June 1

  • The Life & Murder of Nicole Brown Simpson (Lifetime)

Sunday, June 2

Jeremy Renner in Mayor of Kingstown

Jeremy Renner in Mayor of Kingstown (Image credit: Dennis P. Mong Jr./Paramount +)
  • Billy the Kid season 2 part 2 (MGM Plus)
  • Celebrity IOU season 7B (HGTV)
  • The Einstein Challenger (History)
  • Fixer Upper: The Lakehouse (HGTV/Magnolia)
  • Mayor of Kingstown season 3 (Paramount Plus)
  • The Real Housewives of Dubai season 2 (Bravo)
  • Ren Faire (HBO)
  • Secrets and Spies: A Nuclear Endgame (CNN)
  • Violent Earth with Liev Schreiber (CNN)
  • World Eats Bread (National Geographic)

Monday, June 3

Tuesday, June 4

Wednesday, June 5

  • Backed by the Bros (HGTV)
  • Hitler and the Nazis: Evil on Trial (Netflix) 

Thursday, June 6

Friday, June 7

Monday, June 10

  • Divided by Design (HGTV)
  • Paranormal Caught on Camera season 7 (Travel)
  • Six Schizophrenic Brothers season 1 (Discovery)

Tuesday, June 11

  • Deadliest Catch season 20 (Discovery Channel)
  • How Music Got Free (Paramount Plus)
  • Love Island USA season 6 (Peacock)
  • Motel Rescue season 2 (Magnolia Network)

Wednesday, June 12

  • My Guest Needs No Introduction season 5 (Netflix)
  • Presumed Innocent (Apple TV Plus)

Thursday, June 13

  • Alone season 11 (History)
  • Bridgerton season 3 part 2 (Netflix)
  • The Boys season 4 (Prime Video)
  • Blue Lights season 2 (BritBox)

Friday, June 14

  • The Big Bakeover (CW)
  • Joko Anwar’s Nightmares and Daydreams (Netflix)

Sunday, June 16

  • American Monster season 12 (ID)
  • Grantchester season 9 (PBS)
  • House of the Dragon season 2 (HBO)
  • Hotel Cocaine (MGM Plus)

Monday, June 17

  • Cult Massacre: One Day in Jonestown (Hulu)
  • The Great American Recipe season 3 (PBS)
  • Maine Cabin Masters: Building Italy (Magnolia Network)
  • My Life Is Murder (BBC America/Acorn TV)

Tuesday, June 18

  • Chopper Cops (Paramount Plus)
  • Disco: Soundtrack of a Revolution (PBS)
  • Farmhouse Fixer: Camp Revamp (HGTV)

Wednesday, June 19

  • Crimes Gone Viral season 5 (ID)
  • Dynamic Planet (PBS)
  • Hope in the Water (PBS)

Thursday, June 20

  • Alone Australia season 2 (History)
  • Federer: Twelve Final Days (Prime Video)
  • Perfect Wife: The Mysterious Disappearance of Sherri Papini (Hulu)

Friday, June 21

  • Shoresy season 3 (Hulu)

Sunday, June 23

  • Getting Lost with Erin French season 1 (Magnolia)
  • Magnolia Table with Joanna Gaines season 8 (Magnolia)
  • Orphan Black: Echoes (AMC/BBC America/AMC Plus)

Tuesday, June 25

  • High Speed Chase season 2 (ID)

Wednesday, June 26

Thursday, June 27

Max Donovan, Reyn Doi, Mace Coronel, Callie Haverda, Sam Morelos and Ashley Aufderheide in That '90s Show

Max Donovan, Reyn Doi, Mace Coronel, Callie Haverda, Sam Morelos and Ashley Aufderheide in That '90s Show (Image credit: PATRICK WYMORE/NETFLIX)

Friday, June 28

Sunday, June 30

  • The Great Food Truck Race season 17 (Food Network)

July TV releases

Monday, July 1

  • The Wall (NBC)

Tuesday, July 2

Friday, July 5

  • Down in the Valley (Starz)

Monday, July 8

Tuesday, July 9

  • Celebrity Family Feud (ABC)

Wednesday, July 10

  • Claim to Fame season 3 (ABC)
  • Sunny (Apple TV Plus)
  • Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? (ABC)

Thursday, July 11

  • Mastermind: To Think Like a Killer (Hulu)
  • The Responder season 2 (BritBox)
  • Sausage Party: Foodtopia (Prime Video)

Friday, July 12

  • The Serpent Queen season 2 (Starz)

Sunday, July 14

Monday, July 15

  • Hit-Monkey (Hulu) 

Tuesday, July 16

  • Judge Steve Harvey (ABC)

Wednesday, July 17

  • Big Brother season 26 (CBS)
  • Unprisoned season 2 (Hulu)

Thursday, July 18

Friday, July 19

  • Lady in the Lake (Apple TV Plus)

Sunday, July 21

  • Snowpiercer season 4 (AMC/AMC Plus)

Monday, July 22

Courtney B. Vance as Franklin Roberts in 61st Street

Courtney B. Vance in 61st Street (Image credit: AMC)

Tuesday, July 23

  • Dress My Tour (Hulu)

Wednesday, July 24

  • Time Bandits (Apple TV Plus)
  • Wayne Brady: The Family Remix (Freeform)

Thursday, July 26

Monday, July 29

  • Futurama season 12 (Hulu)

Wednesday, July 31

  • Women in Blue (Apple TV Plus)

August TV releases

Thursday, August 1

  • Unstable season 2 (Netflix)

Tuesday, August 6

Wednesday, August 7

  • Let's Make a Deal Primetime (CBS)

Thursday, August 8

Friday, August 9

  • Yo Gabba Gabbaland (Apple TV Plus)

Monday, August 12

  • Solar Opposites season 5 (Hulu)

Wednesday, August 14

  • Bad Monkey (Apple TV Plus) 

Thursday, August 15

  • Bel-Air season 3 (Peacock)
  • Emily in Paris season 4 (Netflix)

Thursday, August 22

  • Reasonable Doubt season 2 (Hulu)

Tuesday, August 27

  • Only Murders in the Building season 4 (Hulu)

Thursday, August 29

  • The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 2 (Prime Video)
Michael Balderston

Michael Balderston is a DC-based entertainment and assistant managing editor for What to Watch, who has previously written about the TV and movies with TV Technology, Awards Circuit and regional publications. Spending most of his time watching new movies at the theater or classics on TCM, some of Michael's favorite movies include Casablanca, Moulin Rouge!, Silence of the Lambs, Children of Men, One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest and Star Wars. On the TV side he enjoys Only Murders in the Building, Yellowstone, The Boys, Game of Thrones and is always up for a Seinfeld rerun. Follow on Letterboxd.

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