It’s time for us to say goodbye to 2020. It seems like every year when we get to making these posts for the next year, it’s almost like walking a tightrope in terms of admitting exhaustion from what the year gave us while also wanting to be excited for the good things the next year will bring. 2020 was exhausting, it’s okay to say that and admit that. 2021 will also probably be exhausting but hopefully less. That said, even though a lot of things are on halt right now, there is still some art we have to look forward to. And as such, we’re bringing you the annual Teenplicity Team “Things We’re Excited For in the New Year” list filled with music, books, video games, television, movies, and more expected to drop in 2020.
Note: These lists are ordered by scheduled release date given at the time of the post being made and are not completed lists (for in case we get some Beyoncé drops from someone, who knows…) Some dates may be subject to change.
You can view part I of our list featuring music, books, video games, and more coming out in 2021 here.
2021 in Television
Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist (NBC)
After an unexpected event, whip-smart computer coder Zoey (Jane Levy) starts to hear the innermost wants and desires of the people around her through music. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist returns for a second season on NBC January 5th.
“I just recently caught up on this show. And by just recently I mean I finished it on the 30th and I’m currently writing this blurb on the 31st. If you can recall (probably not) this time last year, my blurb about this show was that I was very excited to see Alex Newell in another project. And also a little bit about being excited to see Skylar Astin in another project because GLEE and Pitch Perfect will forever have a hold on me. This time around, my blurb will be about how much I genuinely love the show and the characters and the concept. It balances comedy and heart and music numbers so well. One minute I’m crying, the next I’m laughing, and then it doesn’t take long for me to have my hands covering my mouth because something cute happened. It’s the perfect show for anyone that, like me, loved GLEE and Pitch Perfect but wants actual continuity and characters to be well written (*cough* GLEE) and also doesn’t want whatever happened in Pitch Perfect 3. The show explores grief in this very heartbreaking way, but it also explores adulthood and juggling family, friends, relationships, and what it means to be there for yourself and others. Also, just wanna point out that Zoey is a Capricorn which is my sun sign and Mo is a Leo which is my moon sign. So, do with that information what you will. I won’t spoil the first season, but for season two I am looking forward to how they explore the ways that season one ended because they set up a lot of things that I think will really explore these characters further.” – Brie
The Expanse, Season 5 (Amazon Prime)
Based off of the book series of the same name, The Expanse takes place a few hundred years in the future where humans have colonized asteroid belts and Mars when Earth began to become unstable. It follows the ragtag crew of an abandoned ship they named the Rocinante and their allies on Earth, Mars, and the Belt, where threats to the existence of humanity and their future success are around every corner. The latest season finds Amos returning to his roots on Earth for the first time and Naomi confronting her past as she searches to save her son. Episodes continue to drop on Amazon Prime January 6th.
“No one come at me buuuut I haven’t been able to watch the first five episodes of the new season so far. December’s been a busy month both personally and with TEENPLICITY so I’m definitely sad that I haven’t been able to catch up. But I’m excited to finally binge what I’ve been missing and continue watching the rest of the season with everyone else! I’m still not over the death of a fun, interesting character at the end of season four and I’m not ready for all the angst still yet to come this season. Also, I may have googled some aspects of what happens in the book this season is based on and I hope certain things diverge onto a new path for a favorite supporting character of mine…
In any case, The Expanse is superb in many ways. Its storytelling is intricate, bold, and thought-provoking. Characters are constantly forced to make choices where the solution is not black and white and they’re never clear on how their decision will impact the future. This show is probably my favorite series and aside from a bump in the road here and there, it’s incredible and one of the best I’ve ever seen. Also, not only does it employ an incredibly diverse cast but it doesn’t fall back onto the stereotypical, harmful tropes for their characters, probably due to its also incredibly diverse crew on all levels behind the camera.
Probably the most underrated show on television. It deserves so much recognition and so many more fans. Literally wonderful.
In case all of that doesn’t entice you, here’s a few things that might: lesbians, space, Warren Peace from Sky High, and kickass, complex women who all have their own stories outside of their fellow male characters.” – Mary
House in a Hurry (HGTV)
As if house hunting isn’t hard enough, families and individuals featured on the show are facing an extremely tight time constraint and MUST find a house ASAP. Season 2 premieres on HGTV on January 6th.
“I’ve had quite a few moves in my life so I’m basically a pro at moving. Seriously, I had to fill out a form for the state a few years ago for a job and it had me list everywhere I lived – it was extensive. But as I moved across the country and back, my family and I know what it’s like to be facing a tight time constraint and needing to find a house before it’s too late. That’s part of why I love this show.
Maybe it’s because I’m the daughter of a former realtor or maybe it’s because I’m more curious than is probably good but I love house hunting. No joke, HGTV is one of my favorite channels because I love seeing all the different house designs and concepts, exploring new areas that people are looking to live, and the different priorities when it comes to finding the perfect home. So this show is basically House Hunters on steroids and I love it. They zip through multiple properties, have an immense amount of showings set up for just one weekend, and then by the time they leave, they have to decide where they will live. Obviously, some of the drama is played up for TV but I still love it.” – Mary
Following the sad passing of icon and host of Jeopardy! Alex Trebek, this will be the first time that anyone other than him will take up the hosting title (aside from one joke episode where Pat Sajak and Alex Trebek switched hosting gigs). Returns to ABC with new episodes on January 11th.
“Jeopardy! and by extension Alex Trebek have been a constant in my life for so many years. I would watch the show every weeknight with my grandpa, followed by Wheel of Fortune. It was so much a constant that I knew down to the exact minute every time they’d break for a commercial, when the contestant introductions would end, and when the Final Jeopardy! Clue would be revealed and then answered. After my grandpa passed away, it was hard to watch Jeopardy! for a while but it later became a comfort. I’d spend some particularly hard days binging a few episodes or seasons on Netflix once the game show debuted on the streaming platform. It had become one of my last connections to my grandpa. So the passing of Alex Trebek hit hard, much harder than I anticipated.
It’s uncertain what the show is going to feel like now. Audiences, myself included, are so used to Alex’s voice and his grace that it will take some getting used to. As the show features a rotation of new hosts before they will announce Alex’s replacement, I hope we find a similar joy that Alex brought with each episode.
Clue: A rotation of hosts in 2021. Answer: What is Jeopardy! after Alex Trebek?” – Mary
Search Party (HBO MAX)
The dark humored satirical thriller returns as Dory is held prisoner by her psychotic stalker, Chip, who is determined to make Dory believe that they are best friends. As the friends begin to connect the dots that Dory might not be touring Europe as her faked social media posts suggest, they must decide whether or not to put their traumatic pasts behind them and once again become a search party – but this time, for Dory. Search Party returns for a fourth season on HBO MAX January 14th.
“I’m gonna be honest…I am not caught up on this show. So much so that when I looked up the show to craft up the description above, I was severely spoiled but also very confused and also excited to understand what the hell was going on. HBO MAX already released a season of this show after they picked it up from its cancellation from TBS and I haven’t seen it yet but I have heard many great things. I miss the show a lot and it’s humor. And also the outfits!!! The clothes are so nice from what I remember!!!! Anyway I can’t really blurb about this because I also don’t remember much from where I left off, but the new season premieres January 14th which means I guess I have time to do a full rewatch considering I binge-watched the first two seasons in like 2-3 days when I first saw this show awhile back.” – Brie
The first show to come from the MCU after Avengers: Endgame, WandaVision follows Wanda Maximoff and Vision as they seem to settle into regular, suburban lives, living through the lens various television styles and tropes. They quickly find out that not everything is as it seems, and possibly unlock the secret to the multiverse. Premieres on January 15th.
“Listen, I feel like I’ve said this before, I don’t like Vision. I’ve never cared for Vision. He’s very boring and pretentious to me and he’s on this very weird moral high horse that isn’t earned because his moral code is based almost on law and law has never been the determining factor for what is morally right. Vision sucks. Also the more and more I think about it, it’s kinda weird that Wanda literally lost her brother right in front of her eyes and then they erased him completely from the MCU lmao. I’m just here for Monica Rambeau, the daughter of Maria Rambeau and Carol Danvers. And also Elizabeth Olsen as Lucille Ball for whatever reason?” – Brie
“I have to admit that I have never really been sold on either character before the trailer for this show. Wanda is super cool and powerful, although there are glaring flaws with the character for its adaptation to screen, but most of her story in the MCU has revolved around whatever guy is in her life. The exception to this was partially in Captain America: Civil War but even that didn’t do her too many favors. And while I still truly do not care for Vision in the slightest, the concept of their show seems really cool and interesting. I can’t wait to see them go through these different staples of television through the years and the unraveling of Wanda’s universe which totally breaks open the multiverse.
Plus, the show features Maria and Carol’s (let’s be honest, they’re in love with each other and Captain Marvel definitely 100% adopted Maria’s kid) daughter, Monica Rambeau all grown-up. Literally, that alone has my hype growing. Let’s see what comes of it all.” – Mary
Batwoman (January 17)
After finding the Batsuit belonging to former Batwoman Kate Kane, Ryan Wilder takes up the Bat-mantle and takes it upon herself to fight crime in Gotham. Batwoman returns for a second season on The CW January 17th.
“More honesty hour!!!! I did not watch season one of Batwoman! I will also probably not watch season one of Batwoman! I will attempt to watch this new season though. Partially because (and this is 100% true!!!) I basically predicted this new casting choice. I kid you not, as soon as it was announced that Ruby Rose was leaving, I joked that they should just recast with a Black or Brown actress with absolutely no explanation. Just have Batwoman be Black now on a reverse Aunt Viv move just because they could. And guess what happened?! They did it! I won.” – Brie
“To be totally honest, I never watched season one. I have, in again, all honesty not seen any of the superhero shows on The CW aside from season one of Legends of Tomorrow. That being said, Javicia Leslie looks so freaking awesome in all the trailers for season two of Batwoman that I might just jump into the show when the new season starts in the middle of January. Even with my (very) limited knowledge of the lesser-known DC characters, I’m still not all that familiar with Batwoman so the entire show will be a new experience for me. I’m excited!” – Mary
Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous, Season 2 (Netflix)
Following the events of Jurassic World which take place during the first season, the campers of the park’s Camp Cretaceous pilot program find themselves stranded on Isla Nublar, surrounded by dinosaurs, and with no way to get home. Season 2 drops on January 22nd.
“Listen guys – I still haven’t fully recovered from the events of episode 7 in the first season. Like, I’m still shocked that they did that and I was not prepared and I probably should have been but wow. It was so gut-wrenching but soooo good.
Anyway, I’m really looking forward to the fact that we’re picking up not long after where we left off. It’s going to be interesting to see how the kids cope with being stranded on a dinosaur-infested island, how they work together to survive alone, and what they will make of the mysterious person that helps them, as shown in the trailer. I mean, I’m pretty sure we all know who that is but I won’t spoiler it for anyone that still hasn’t watched the first season.
This show is fun and entertaining and emotional. It has everything that is great about the Jurassic Park franchise but also embodies a lot of new elements. The voice cast is great and so much fun, and I’m really excited to see what comes next. (Also a shout-out to Ryan Potter who is making at least one more appearance on this list. The talent tho.)” – Mary
Euphoria special (HBO MAX)
Following a group of high school students through their experiences of sex, drugs, friendships, love and trauma, the first season of Euphoria was praised for its exploration of Gen Z and a strong cast including standouts such as Emmy-winner Zendaya, Hunter Schaffer, and Alexa Demie. Euphoria returns for one special episode on HBO MAX January 24th.
“After the Rue bubble episode dropped in December, I’m even more interested in seeing what Jules episode will be about. As I’ve said before, I don’t think Rue and Jules should be together right now, but I do think they’re soulmates. That said, I only think they can be soulmates and truly love each other and themselves if they first take care of themselves and get the help that they need and that’s not possible right now, I don’t think, if they’re relying on their codependence of each other. And I mean, I get it looking at the circumstances in their lives. It’s easy to be codependent in those kinds of situations when you find the one person who seems to understand you. But that doesn’t change what is healthy and what isn’t. Euphoria has its faults and is worthy of critique, but when it’s at its best, it really does deliver. Also, just wanna remind y’all that Zendaya is now officially Zendaya THEE Emmy winner.” – Brie
RWBY, Volume 8 (RoosterTeeth.com)
Picking up from the events in Volume 7, Volume 8 finds Teams RWBY & JNPR fracturing as they try to find the best way to prevent Salem from destroying all of Mantle. Relationships are put to the test as the heroes face odds they’ve never anticipated and losses they might not recover from. The second half of Volume 8 returns February 6th.
“As with a few other things on this list, I’m about two chapters behind. And I know I missed a lot. With that in mind though, I am aware of the surmounting odds being placed against RWBY, JNPR, and everyone else. This volume is their most intense, high-stakes one yet. I feel like I’m vaguely aware of something that happens to everyone’s favorite robot, but I also feel like there are so many losses yet to be seen. To be honest, I’m terrified.
I know that they won’t actually kill off any members of Team RWBY until the last volume, if they ever decide to, but everyone else is up for grabs and for some reason this show hates redheads so I’m so scared for my girl Nora. But really, this volume has been really interesting and unique, and we’re getting such deeper looks into a bunch of characters. It’s fun seeing what’s making a quiet, reserved guy like Ren absolutely lose it, and also seeing where Cinder came from (although I haven’t seen that chapter yet so please no spoilers if you’re a fan and see this!), a really cool new point of view this volume.
Terrified though I may be, here’s me also putting out into the universe the canon confirmation of Bumblby alongside FlowerPower fixing their stuff. Just give me Blake & Yang and Nora & Ren all happy and safe together for like, at least one chapter? Please? Is that too much to ask? Thank you…” – Mary
Grey’s Anatomy, Second Part of Season 17 (ABC)
Following the lives of the doctors, nurses, surgeons, and residents at Seattle’s fictional Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, this latest season has taken the Coronavirus pandemic head-on, not only revolving the medical issues in each episode to it, but also having the characters express their exhaustion, confusion, fear, and frustration that echo many on the frontlines. Season 17 returns on March 4th.
“I don’t know if I’ve ever been a regular Grey’s Anatomy viewer but I’ve seen enough in the background to know the characters, their relationships, and general plotlines. I’ve seen key episodes, cried many, many times, and have a few favorite characters. That being said, I’m surprisingly super invested in the storylines this season, especially those concerning Meredith and Dr. Koracick’s struggles with COVID-19 (and this is just a sidenote that I love Maggie so, so, so much and just want to watch her live her best life and not have to suffer anymore). These storylines have become increasingly harder to swallow, especially as my dad was admitted to the hospital for a short time because of his own COVID-19 diagnosis, but it’s also reminded me that I’m not alone in the way I feel and the way I perceive the severity of the virus compared to others who brush it off.
Meredith was originally supposed to written out of the show because of Ellen Pompeo’s departure but it is yet to be seen how that happens. It will be interesting to see if they decide to go the route of having her pass from COVID-19, a tragedy that has hit a number of frontline workers. Also, Dr. Koracick really represents the patients struggling to deal with being treated for the virus while others around them are passing. His unique point of view has been a good follow point, especially in one episode when he sneaks out to visit Meredith’s hospital room because he wants to be somewhere where he doesn’t see or have to be around death. It’s a startling reality too many on the frontlines face day after day. We’ll just have to wait to see how this goes.” – Mary
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (March 19)
Set in the MCU, the Disney+ Original Series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier takes place after the events of Avengers: Endgame. Anthony Mackie and Sebastian Stan reprise their roles as Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes respectively for a six-episode miniseries that finds Sam carrying the responsibility of the shield. Alongside Mackie and Stan, Emily VanCamp returns as Sharon Carter and Daniel Brühl returns as Zemo. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is scheduled to premiere on Disney+ March 19th.
“The Falcon and the Winter Soldier show actually being a thing is truly a testament to the power of fandom and entertaining press. I don’t doubt for a moment that this didn’t become a thing simply because people enjoyed Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie’s dynamic during press tours and their repeated pitching for a project where they could continue working together. Considering Captain America: Winter Soldier is still in my top 3 of Marvel movies (maybe even number 1) this show is the MCU show I’m most excited for because even though it takes place after Endgame, it feels like it carries a vibe similar to Winter Soldier. Infinity War and Endgame didn’t do much with these two despite the fact that they could’ve. Even Civil War has its faults despite the two having more screen time in that one. So, I’m excited to see what adventures these two have in store alongside Sharon.” – Brie (Editor’s Note: This is a repost from last year.)
“Though I’m less excited about this than WandaVision – a shock even to me – I am still pumped about this, seeing Sam Wilson struggle with accepting he’s now Captain America, Bucky Barnes dealing with life after Hydra, and hopefully a bunch of Sharon Carter being the awesome character she was in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.” – Mary **
DC’s Titans, Season 3 (HBO Max)
Following the events of season two and the tragic passing of one of their own, the Titans find themselves in Gotham helping an old friend. At the same time, Koriand’r’s sister has come to Earth, most likely intent on getting rid of Kori so nothing will stop her reign. While no release date has been announced, filming should wrap soon with the third season to premiere later this year.
“Fun fact: Mary and I literally both just watched this show for the first time at the same time like three weeks ago? Maybe a month ago? Time doesn’t exist who knows. Anyway, we both were just sucked in. I was a Teen Titans fan as a kid so I was always hesitant to watch this show because 1. this whole ‘Everything needs to be grittier!’ as a plot is lowkey getting boring and 2. that Party City wig they gave Kori in the first season was just disrespectful to Anna Diop’s beauty!!! But, I saw Kori’s new character design for season 3 and decided ‘Okay, I’ll give the show a shot.’ And then I ended up watching both seasons in a few days. Needless to say, just as Starfire was my favorite as a kid watching Teen Titans, Kori/Starfire is my favorite in this series too even though they’re two completely different characters. Season two didn’t really give her much to do but mostly because it felt like her entire arc in the second season was setting her up for a potential arc which season three better deliver or I’m fighting. I mean it seems like they will. As soon as I say Blackfire, I literally screamed!!! I can’t wait to see her wake up and choose violence and chaos ensues. I’m also excited to see Gar and Rachel’s dynamic more and hopefully, more of a focus on the Core Four than we had last season because…I mean…I’m sorry I’m not watching this show for Hank and Dawn and I won’t pretend like I am even for this post.” – Brie
“GUUUUUYS. LISTEN. GUUUUYS. OH MY GOSH. Look. I didn’t intend to but considering my massive crush on Brenton Thwaites and literally everyone in this cast seeming absolutely amazing and fun and tightknit, I absolutely 110% fell in love with this show. I only just watched it recently and I’m obsessed. Not only does it have one of my favorite tropes ever – broody, loner guy acts too cool and is closed-off but is really a big softie who adopts 87 kids – but it has Brenton Thwaites taking on that role. Swoon. Anyway.
Dick Grayson is one of my favorites from this show so I’ve really enjoyed the past two seasons really focusing on him, his past, his trauma, and coping with all of it as he has to move on, figure out his role as a hero, and take on the role Bruce was for him for these other kids, only trying to do better by them than Bruce did to him. And as much as I loved all of that, I really want the focus to be more equally on the Core Four again, though we do need to spend more time with Kori and Gar especially. (Also I need to add that I literally laughed out loud reading Brie’s last sentence because the accuracy. If only you guys knew the jokes we had, oh man.)
Kori has a massive storyline in the works for season three and I hope it does her justice. We were truly robbed of so much more of her this past season, although it was setting up the foundation for her upcoming plotline, and I really hope the spotlight really gets to shine on her. She’s incredible and one of my favorite characters. She’s hilarious yet blunt and caring yet tough and no-nonsense. Also, she’s the only one who constantly sees through all of Dick’s fronts.
Gar on the other hand has probably had the least amount of focus out of the Core Four and it’s tragic we haven’t gotten more. Especially after everything that’s happened in season two, we need the writers to spend the time to examine Gar and how he’s coping with the immense amount of trauma that’s going to come from the events of the season. Seriously. The events were traumatic, especially given that despite the fact he wasn’t in control of himself, he still has to live with what his body did. Give Gar the space to explore and cope with that trauma. And stop hurting him, @ writers!!! Gar Protection Squad 2k21.” – Mary
Stranger Things, Season 4 (Netflix)
Though little is known about the upcoming season, it will introduce a plethora of new characters while following up with all the beloved ones who now find themselves scattered across the country – or in Hopper’s case, across the globe. A release date has not been announced at this time though it is expected to debut on Netflix closer to the end of 2021.
“Alright here’s the thing, I love Stranger Things, I have significantly cared less for Hopper as the show has gone on so if this season is Hopper-centric…I may suffer. That said if this season is mostly Steve and Robin unintentionally co-parenting while Robin dates every single girl that Steve thought he had a chance with…they just might be on to something. Who needs a premise anymore to be honest?” – Brie
“I binged all three seasons of the show last year and it was a fun time. And I became obsessed. And now here I am, still willing and waiting for more. Anyway here is another show with my favorite trope of a dude seeming too cool for anyone and anything but then goes off adopting a bunch of random kids and becoming their pseudo-father! To be honest, it’s been a while so I don’t remember too much from the show aside from the fact I love and adore Steve Harrington, would do anything for him, and am the #1 Scoop Troop fan. My main reasoning for being excited for this is for the return of one of my favorite single parents, Steve Harrington. Can’t wait.” – Mary
Julie and the Phantoms, Season 2 MANIFESTATION (Netflix)
While there has been no announcement of a renewal for the popular Netflix series, this is us manifesting that renewal so we can continue to enjoy the music of Julie and the Phantoms, find out the secrets between Julie and Carrie’s friendship, enjoy more moments from the guys of Sunset Curve, and of course get another Alex appearance during a Dirty Candi performance. There is no renewal announcement at this time, this is just pure manifestation.
“Julie and the Phantoms was such a pleasant surprise of a joy to watch in 2020. Actually, it wasn’t a surprise…I am first and foremost Kenny Ortega trash, so of course, I was gonna love this show. How much I was gonna love this show, however? Yeah, I wasn’t really ready for that. But I demand a second season and subsequently however many more seasons are needed to finish telling this story. The cast is so cute and seems to really love each other and it has been one of the shining lights of 2020 experiencing this show. There’s so much more this show can do and they have such a devoted and loving fanbase (trust us…we know…we can view our site stats and engagement lmao). Mary and I have not only been manifesting a second season of this show since we watched it, we’ve also been manifesting Teenplicity getting to cover it and do a Julie and the Phantoms week. Let’s not break hearts here, Netflix!” – Brie
“I think it’s safe to say that we were definitely among the people that became immediately obsessed with the series. Like, I straight up bought the album and listened to it on repeat more times than I can count. But this show was so much fun to watch and the season left me with a lot of questions I want answered. Plus, this cast is super sweet and seem so close – and I had a blast interviewing Savannah Lee May all about it – and I would love to see them all reunited and filming again. Plus, if we keep the show going long enough, we could probably get at least on (1) Julie and the Phantoms actual live tour out of it. So yeah, Netflix, let’s get on that renewal, right? Now or never.” – Mary
Ms. Marvel (Disney+)
Kamala Khan, a 16-year-old Muslim Pakistani-American from Jersey City who writes superhero fan fiction (particularly of Captain Marvel), gains shape-shifting power. Ms. Marvel is scheduled to premiere on Disney+ sometime in late 2021.
“I do not know much about this show. If I’m being honest, the Disney+ release schedule was very overwhelming with content so I kinda just did a lil ‘And that’s what you missed on GLEE!’ skim through the day that happened. I’m sure there are many that I will end up watching but I can’t make a blurb about all of them right now. Especially considering Disney+ canceled my girl Lizzie even after they started filming so I’m holding their release news at a distance until further notice, to be honest. But let’s make this blurb about Ms. Marvel. I’ve read a couple of the Kamala Khan comics but I couldn’t pass a quiz on the material. But I did like her character and to see her come to life feels very exciting. Also the showrunner for this worked on Four Weddings and a Funeral and has a background in comedy so I’m expecting very strong humor and hopefully all the parts I liked about Four Weddings and a Funeral without all the parts I didn’t?” – Brie
- Celebrity Wheel of Fortune (ABC) – January 7th
- Obi-Wan Kenobi (Disney+) – Filming begins March 2021
- “Am I cheating putting this on the list? Absolutely. Did you expect to see something being filmed on the list? Nope. But you underestimated my power. Anyway, I’m excited for this to start filming because I can’t wait to see how this short series plays out but mostly because we finally got confirmation that Hayden Christensen is leaving his farm and returning as Darth Vader (and let’s be honest, definitely Anakin Skywalker in some way) for the series. Ewan McGregor and Hayden Christensen together again come March? That knowledge alone is going to get me through 2021.” – Mary
- Loki (Disney+) – May 2021
- Outer Banks (Netflix) – Mid-2021
- Dug Days (Disney+) – Fall 2021
- The Book of Boba Fett (Disney+) – December 2021
- “I will be the first to admit that I did not care for Boba Fett at all until The Mandalorian. Between that and Temuera Morrison being so excited to come back to Star Wars that he came to his meeting hours early, I’m here and ready to help this show succeed.” – Mary
Potential Premieres We’re Excited for:
- Good Girls (NBC – new season)
- The Kenan Show (NBC – premiere)
- Atlanta (FX – new season)
- Young Justice: Phantoms (HBO MAX – new season)
- Pose (FX – new season)
- Ironheart (Disney+ – premiere)
- Star Wars: The Bad Batch (Disney+ – premiere)
- Sex Education (Netflix – new season)
- Love, Victor (Hulu – new season)
- Cruel Summer (Freeform – premiere)
- Young Love (HBO MAX – premiere)
- Monsters at Work (Disney+ – premiere) **
2021 in Movies
One Night in Miami (Amazon Prime)
In February 1964, Muhammed Ali (Eli Goree), Sam Cooke (Leslie Odom Jr.), Malcolm X (Kingsley Ben-Adir), and Jim Brown (Aldis Hodge) get together in Miami to celebrate Ali’s surprise title win over Sonny Liston as they’re watched over by the Nation of Islam security. One Night in Miami is set to premiere on Amazon Prime January 14th.
“You know what I learned from doing the research to craft the description of this? That One Night in Miami is actually an adaptation of a play that was written by Kemp Powers who also co-wrote Soul for Disney/Pixar which is currently my emotional support movie right now!!! Black people are truly amazing. I was already excited because we have Regina BEEN King directing and also, I mean, look at the cast! Excellence through and through!!! But, I’m also excited because the premise just seems very cool. I originally thought that this was just a completely made up what if. Like someone was just like, ‘Can you imagine what would happen if we got Malcolm X, Muhammed Ali, Sam Cooke, and Jim Brown together in Miami?’ because I mean…what a group of people. But apparently, the story is a fictionalized version of a night that actually happened?! In 1964? When they were celebrating Muhammed Ali beating Sonny Liston?? Which is even cooler.” – Brie
“Eli Goree in a movie with a bunch of other actors that I like, like Kingsley Ben-Adir, Leslie Odom Jr., and Aldis Hodge? Sign me up. Directed by Regina King? Double that. All together in an incredible story of what might have actually happened…? Yes yes yes.” – Mary
A retelling of the classic tale as a musical starring Camila Cabello, Billy Porter, Idina Menzel, Missy Elliot, and more. Cinderella is set to premiere February 5th.
“I don’t know if ‘excited’ is the word I would use to describe my feelings for this upcoming film. There’s a promise of multiple twists, great music, etc. but there’s nothing in this film that grabs me. I am the #1 fan of 2015’s Cinderella that there ever was and I know that Brie is probably the biggest fan of the 1997 Cinderella with Brandy, so it kind of begs to ask the question what this film could do that would top the others? I’m definitely more interested in what they think will make this film standout in a legion of other remakes of the story, but we shall see. It’s definitely got an interesting mix of cast members that I probably never would have pegged to all be in a movie together. So I guess there’s that.” – Mary
Judas and the Black Messiah (HBO MAX)
In the late 1960s, William O’Neal (LaKeith Stanfield) agrees to work as an informant for the FBI in order to take down Black Panther Party chairman Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya). Judah and the Black Messiah is set to premiere on HBO MAX February 12th.
“Most Black Chicagoans know about Fred Hampton and as such, most of us also know about his very brutal and unjust murder at the very young age of 21. He was a leader of the Black Panther Party and a revolutionary whose work includes founding the Rainbow Coalition, advocating for free food school programs, and even stopping gang violence by getting gangs to end rivalries for the sake of collective liberation. His contributions will forever remain ingrained in the way those of us who want a better Chicago, a better America, a better world, in general, continue to move and think about/understand life and the unfair systems that harm us. So, getting a movie about him like this, and right now I hope does justice to his legacy. I once read in vivid detail the night of his murder for a class before (it’s….very hard, I don’t necessarily recommend it) so I’m very much bracing myself as I assume it’s going to be in this movie as well.” – Brie
Justice League – Zack Snyder Cut (HBO MAX)
Following some rifts with higher-ups at Warner Brothers and the tragic passing of his daughter, Zack Snyder left Justice League which was then helmed by Joss Whedon who ordered a number of reshoots, and has later been accused of gross misconduct and abuse on the set by Ray Fisher who has been backed by fellow Justice League co-stars. After a huge fan push, Warner Brothers and HBO stated that they will be doing a special cut of the film by Zack Snyder. Justice League – Zack Snyder Cut is set to release on HBO MAX in March.
“I will admit that my knowledge of the DC universe is very limited. Of the current DCEU, my interest is shaky aside from Wonder Woman and Shazam!. But considering what a tonal shift Whedon’s Justice League was, how off-kilter so many of the characters were, and unnecessary things like his seemingly signature woman-falls-on-nerdy-guy-with-her-boobs-in-his-face move, it was a hot mess. So it’ll be nice for the man who has envisioned much of the new DCEU to this point to finally get the chance to share what he intended for this massive team-up film. Here’s hoping that DC fans are satisfied. I’m crossing my fingers for all of you.” – Mary
Coming 2 America (March 5)
Set after the events of the first film, Coming 2 America finds former Prince Akeem Joffer (Eddie Murphy) set to become King of Zamunda when he discovers he has a son he never knew about in America – a street-savvy Queens native named Lavelle (Jermaine Fowler) who he must groom as the crown prince to honor his father (James Earl Jones). Coming 2 America is set to premiere on Amazon Prime March 5th.
“Coming to America is a classic within the Black community. It’s one of Eddie Murphy’s best roles which says a lot because even in his worst movies, you’ll still have somewhat of a good time most likely. So, when it was announced that Coming to America would be getting a sequel, logically speaking, it’d make sense to be torn between being excited to see what they’d do with it and also not wanting a classic to be touched. (But, I mean look at Hollywood right now, everything is getting a reboot or a sequel.) A lot of my excitement for Coming 2 America really comes from the fact that it seems like the cast, both original and newcomers, seem to really believe in the project to be good. I also have to give a shoutout to Kiki Layne who I once worked with on a short film because she is really out here killing it in her career and I’m so proud of her. This all gives me hope that it is and that they’ll do justice to bring this 1988 story into 2020 in a way that holds up. Also hoping the movie is good because John Landis who was the original director isn’t attached to this project, instead we have Craig Brewster who gave us Hustle & Flow and Dolemite is My Name which should’ve gotten Eddie Murphy the Oscar.” – Brie (Editor’s Note: This is modified from last year)
Raya and the Last Dragon (Disney+)
From Disney, Raya and the Last Dragon takes place in the mysterious realm of Kumandra as fearless and passionate warrior Raya (Kelly Marie Tran) searches for the last dragon (Awkwafina) in the world. Raya and the Last Dragon is set to premiere on Disney+ March 12th.
“So…last year my whole blurb about this movie was centered around Cassie Steele and she is no longer a part of this project…lmao….so I guess I don’t win always. But I’ll still watch and I’m excited to see what comes of it but man. Kelly Marie Tran is a delight though! So hey, I’ll take it.” – Brie
“The main reason I’m looking forward to this is because a couple of old friends have worked on it and I really want to support them. Also, here’s for Kelly Marie Tran having a role that is deserving of her. Here for her to succeed, please.” – Mary
No Time to Die
Recruited to rescue a kidnapped scientist, globe-trotting spy James Bond (Daniel Craig) finds himself hot on the trail of a mysterious villain, who’s armed with dangerous new technology. No Time to Die is set to theatrically release on April 2nd.
“We return back in the same position as we were last year and I repeat, that I am only here to say that I will be seeing this movie for Lashana Lynch, Rami Malek, and Ana de Armas. Not in a theater though. When it inevitably drops to HBO MAX that’s when you’ve got my attention.” – Brie
“Much like Brie, and my post last year, I am interested in this movie solely for Lashana Lynch and for her to absolutely command the screen. She is a STAR and it’s about time Hollywood starts seeing and respecting that. Give her the Bond role permanently!!! And you want to see consistency? We’re using Lashana Lynch’s poster again as the icon for this movie because she IS the icon!!!” – Mary
After her finding out her fiancé cheated on her moments before exchanging vows in front of a global audience, a pop star instead marries a stranger in the crowd. Marry Me is set to premiere May 14th.
“A trailer hasn’t even dropped for this film but I’m excited for it because it has JLo, who is a former RomCom queen, and this is me really hoping that it will continue to bring back the Romantic Comedy Renaissance that I hoped would come after the immense success of Crazy Rich Asians. I’m sure it’s going to be filled with ridiculous tropes and awkward scenes but that’s some of the stuff I love the most in these kinds of movies. Plus, at least it’ll be a light film with most likely a happy ending, a nice contrast to the constant heaviness that fill our daily news cycles from television. Either way, I hope this succeeds, we get 87 more romantic comedies at the movies, and we all can enjoy a moment of levity.” – Mary
Godzilla vs. Kong
Fearsome monsters Godzilla and King Kong square off in an epic battle for the ages, while humanity looks to wipe out both of the creatures and take back the planet once and for all. Godzilla vs. Kong is set to premiere May 21st.
“Listen, if this gets delayed any more then I will truly be sobbing. Me, the number one Kong: Skull Island fan, has been eagerly awaiting this film for years. Since I’m never getting an actual sequel to the film, and no follow-up film(s) with more of the team-up between Brie Larson’s Mason Weaver and Tom Hiddleston’s James Conrod, this is the next best thing. I love Kong. Protect Kong. Kong and Godzilla can be a pair of kings, okay? I’ve seen Disney XD do it, they can do it.” – Mary **
It’s Dom and his crew up against his most dangerous and fearsome villain yet – his brother. F9 is set to premiere May 28th.
“One time one of the stars of the Fast & Furious franchise mentioned that they wanted them to go to space next and if that’s not the entire point or at least a major plot in this film then what’s the point? Give me space or give me nothing.” – Mary
In the Heights (HBO MAX)
Based on the Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical from Lin-Manuel Miranda, In the Heights tells the story of the residents in New York’s Washington Heights neighborhood as big changes affect the neighborhood. With Anthony Ramos as Usnavi, the cast also includes Leslie Grace as Nina, Melissa Barrera as Vanessa, Corey Hawkins as Benny, Gregory Diaz IV as Sonny, and original Broadway cast member Olga Merediz reprising her role as Abuela Claudia. In the Heights is set to premiere on HBO MAX June 18th.
“In the Heights is arguably my favorite Broadway staged musical or at least a top choice. Listening to the cast album is comforting and heartbreaking and personal for me because the creative team for this show did such an amazing job developing these characters. These characters grappling with being in the place that they call home and seeing it change and gentrify against their will while they eagerly want to make it out because we define success as being able to leave and make it out…that’s one of the realest things a story has ever given me because it’s one of the most everyday things I feel like I think about constantly and Lin-Manuel and Quiara just put it into one of the most beautiful works of art we have. I didn’t get to see In the Heights when it toured to Chicago and there was a production here a couple of years ago that involved whitewashing so…yeah, I was good on that. I had hopes of getting to watch this in theaters and cry my eyes out. But you know what? At home works too because I still get to see these multifaceted Latinx characters (plus Benny) with dreams and goals and being people instead of just stereotypes or the background to white Americans shouldn’t still be groundbreaking, but it sadly it is. Also, in terms of a movie musical, I hope this serves as a reminder that movie musicals don’t have to be white and they also (hopefully) shouldn’t have to struggle between being a movie and being what it was on stage.” – Brie (Editor’s Note: This is modified from last year’s post)
“This trailer lives in my head rent free. While it’s a shame that the film won’t get the huge, theatrical opening that was intended for it, I still am wishing and hoping for the film’s success.” – Mary**
Space Jam: A New Legacy (HBO MAX)
When basketball champion and global icon LeBron James and his son – who dreams of being a video game developer – are trapped in a digital space by a rogue Al-G Rhythm, LeBron must get them home safe by leading Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Lola Bunny and the whole gang of notoriously undisciplined Looney Tunes to victory over the Al-G’s digitized champions on the court. Space Jam: A New Legacy is set to premiere on HBO MAX July 16th.
“Remember when Space Jam 2 seemed like a myth? I’m still convinced it’s a myth. I won’t believe this movie was actually written, filmed, edited, and distributed until I open the HBO MAX app on July 16th and it’s there. Or it’s not there. It, however, has a VERY strong cast, a very amazing director in Malcolm D. Lee (he directed Roll Bounce!!! One of my favorite movies ever! And The Best Man and Girls Trip!!!), and the script was co-written by Ryan Coogler and Sev Ohanian who both worked on Fruitvale Station together. So…there’s a lot of positives stacked up in this project that shows great promise. Also, as far as I know, a certain abuser doesn’t have his music included in this movie which is great because his legacy is so engrained in the first movie and hopefully we can get the joy and classicness of Space Jam without inherently supporting an abuser who I will not name but is complete trash.” – Brie
“Look. You can tell me this movie has been cast. You can tell me that this movie was filmed. You can show me set pictures all you want. But the fact stands that I won’t believe it’s actually a thing until I’m watching it. In all honesty, it’s been years since I watched the original Space Jam. I really enjoyed it as a kid and I’m hoping that while this film pays homage to that, it is also able to find its own success and niche.” – Mary
The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard
After the events of the first film, Michael Bryce and Darius Kincaid reunite as they work together to help protect Kincaid’s wife and prevent a European cyberattack. The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard is set to premiere August 20th.
“The original film was literally just chaos put on screen. Like I’m sure there was a script but at the same time, I’m not 100% convinced they didn’t just give Ryan Reynolds and Samuel L. Jackson a vague idea of the plot and their characters and set them loose. But yeah, it was incredibly fun chaos and I was sad when the film ended that there had been no news of a sequel. BUT ALAS, HERE WE ARE. With the first film being hilarious and outright entertaining in so many ways, I have high hopes that this film will continue that special brand of incredible chaos. The first film mostly followed the partnership of Ryan and Sam’s characters, something I loved and found incredibly entertaining, but making it a trio to include Salma Hayek’s character? Yes, I’m in love with this and am already cracking up.” – Mary
A chance encounter with an old-timer exposes Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) to the true story behind Candyman. Anxious to use these macabre details in his studio as fresh grist for paintings, he unknowingly opens a door to a complex past that unravels his own sanity and unleashes a terrifying wave of violence. Candyman is set for a theatrical release August 27th.
“Here’s the thing, I’m not into scary movies. I can only take so much when something is a horror or a slasher or a thriller. What can I say? I’m baby. I do much better if it’s psychological instead of just up murder. So I haven’t actually seen the original Candyman (I know…confiscate or crack my Chicago card now) because it creeped me out too much. I’m going to do my absolute best to see both this year. Not in a theater though, I’m so sorry Nia, I adore you and think you’re an amazing director but I know I would not survive this movie in a theater. Anyway, I also wanna say that this cast? Absolutely immaculate oh my goodness this is a good ass cast I can’t. Imagine having this much talent in your cast!!!! Can’t wait for this cast to traumatize me!!!” – Brie
“Did I ever see the original Candyman? No. Does Jordan Peele have an incredible talent for horror and am I terrified alone from the fact he’s behind this sequel? Absolutely. Will I ever get up the guts to actually watch this? Who knows! But what’s also incredibly cool about this film is that it’s directed by Nia DaCosta, who also worked on the screenplay, and I’ve heard great things about her work. Her previous film Little Woods has been on my watchlist for what feels like forever and she’s set to direct the Captain Marvel sequel so I’m hype and I’m excited to see how she performs in so many different genres.” – Mary
A continuation of the ever-growing MCU, The Eternals spans over 7000 years and focuses on an immortal alien race created by the Celestials known as the Eternals whose job is to protect humanity from their evil counterparts, the Deviants. This movie brings the likes of Angelina Jolie, Brian Tyree Henry, Kit Harrington, and Kumail Nanjani among other talents into the MCU while returning Gemma Chan in a new role. The Eternals is set to premiere in November.
“As I said last year, Brian Tyree Henry being in the MCU is a literal dream that we do not deserve but I’m gonna take it before anyone becomes aware of how undeserving we are of it. Actually…you know what? My feelings on the Eternals remains the same as last year now that I’m looking at the blurb so let’s just relive it:
I know there’s a lot of other things I could talk about in terms of The Eternals such as Angelina Jolie because she’s Angelina Jolie. Or Gemma Chan because she’s Gemma Chan. And please note that those points are very valid. But, since Brian Tyree Henry’s name was first attached to this project, that’s when I discovered power. Everyone should join me in just (re)watching every project Brian Tyree Henry has starred leading up to the release of The Eternals because I demand we shower this man with love during his time in the MCU and after that since there were a few folks late to the train before he joined. Also, while we’re here, I’d like to request that all of Brian Tyree Henry’s co-stars in If Beale Street Could Talk also join the MCU.” – Brie
“I literally know as much about this film now as I did last year, no lie. But I’m still very much excited for Angelina Jolie. Also, I wonder if they’re just not gonna acknowledge the fact that Gemma Chan played a character in Captain Marvel or if that’s going to be a thing. Anyway, playing two roles in one cinematic universe? Legends only!” – Mary **
- Everybody’s Talking About Jamie – February 26th
- BIOS – April 16th **
- Ghostbusters: Afterlife – June 11th
- “I’m going to be upfront and say that I really don’t care much for the original Ghostbusters movies and actually don’t like them at all. I was really excited for the women-led reboot and am actually a big fan of that. All of that said, I don’t care for this film much at all except to watch McKenna Grace and Paul Rudd continue to cash their paychecks. You go fam.” – Mary
- Luca – June 18th
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings – July 9th
- Jungle Cruise – July 29th **
- Halloween Kills – October 15th **
- Snake Eyes – October 22nd
- West Side Story – December 10th
Potential Releases We’re Excited For:
- Tomb Raider 2
- “If I cheated in the television section then of course I’m going to cheat in the film section as well?! I loved the first of the new films and it was so cool to see the way the film mirrored and paid tribute to the reboot trilogy of games. Though the film took many, many liberties with the content of the reboot game trilogy it was inspired by, there’s still so many stories to tell through the second and third games. I am really excited to see what plotlines from the games they decide to bring to life on-screen next, what characters they might bring in, and so much more. Even if the films continue to stray from the games, I’m still pumped. Lara Croft is an iconic character in media and getting any kind of content for her is what I’m here for. Plus, I really do love Alicia Vikander’s take on the character too. So please, 2021, give me ALL the Lara Croft.” – Mary
Disclaimer: We do not own any of the pictures used for this post.