The 23 Best Shows of 2023, According to PureWow’s Editors

Did your favorite make the list?

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top-tv-shows-of-2023: A character played by Rashida Jones sits in a chair and looks at something while an actor dressed like a cop stands just behind her looking at the same thing while holding a mug. The scene has dark lighting.
Courtesy of AppleTV+

Last year, when we called out our absolute favorite shows of 2022The White Lotus, Severance, House of the Dragon—we were pretty convinced there’d be no topping the list of groundbreaking content. But here we are in 2023, and not only was it a banner year for streaming (in spite of the actors’ and writers’ strikes), but we had to expand our list of favorite shows from 10 to 23.

From Ali Wong’s rage-filled star turn in Beef on Netflix to the reality show that had viewers of all ages abuzz, ABC’s The Golden Bachelor, here is our list of the best TV shows of 2023, as hand-selected by PureWow’s editors.

1. Found

You probably recognize Shanola Hampton from her years on Shameless, but now she’s back and spearheading this intense new drama on NBC and Peacock. Found follows investigator Gabi Mosely (Hampton) as she and her team attempt to solve kidnapping cases and rescue victims. And just wait for that major Mark-Paul Gosselaar twist that changes everything in the final seconds of episode one.

2. Beef

In her rave review of Netflix’s Beef starring the fabulous Ali Wong and Steven Yeun, PureWow’s Associate Editor of News & Entertainment, Nakeisha Campbell, writes, “The series keeps you on the edge of your seat from start to finish—and it's not quite as predictable as you might think.” The series follows a pair of road rage-driven strangers who can’t seem to let it go after one cuts the other off while driving. The incident sparks a bitter rivalry that leads to a season of chaos (and comedy).

3. Silo

From episode one, Silo reels you in with high-stakes drama and gripping mystery. In the dystopian series, thousands of residents have been living inside of a silo with no true knowledge of what the world was like before—or what might actually be going on outside. But the sheriff is determined to figure it out. The show features captivating performances from a number of familiar faces including Rashida Jones, Tim Robbins and Common.

4. The Golden Bachelor

In everyone’s favorite reality show of 2023, The Golden Bachelor has finally injected new life into the Bachelor Nation franchise. 72-year-old Gerry Turner is as endearing as he is emotional on his journey to find love later in life. The season follows the same format as The Bachelor, but manages to squeeze in even more tears and higher stakes. And that Golden Bachelor season finale?! Oof.

5. The Bear

Season two of The Bear was perhaps even better than the first (and season three, which is headed our way soon, looks just as promising). The series follows chef Carmen “Carmy” Berzatto (Jeremy Allen White) and his kitchen crew in one of the fastest-paced and most emotionally charged shows on television. One reason the sophomore season made our list this year? Jamie Lee Curtis’s stellar performance as Carmy’s mother.

6. Squid Game: The Challenge

The Golden Bachelor may be #1 in our hearts when it comes to reality shows, but when we’re talking about competition shows, Squid Game: The Challenge takes the cake. Based on the hit Netflix drama Squid Game, the new series puts real life competitors in the arena to face off in games such as Red Light/Green Light. While the contestants obviously don’t die when they are eliminated (like in the fictionalized series), the drama still remains quite high. There’s a reason everyone’s been raving about this show.

7. Poker Face

The fun and mystery-packed series stars Natasha Lyonne as Charlie Cale, a modern-day Columbo who solves cases thanks to one very special power: the ability to tell if a person is lying. In her review of the show, PureWow Senior Editor Dana Dickey wrote, “Did you like Knives Out and Glass Onion? This series features the same syncopated jazz melody of an unusual lead character set against a scrambled bass line of unusual settings and malevolent goings-on.”

8. All the Light We Cannot See

This wartime drama is based on the novel of the same name written by Anthony Doerr. The Netflix mini-series, set in 1944, does a beautiful job telling the story of a young girl who is blind named Marie-Laure LeBlanc (Aria Mia Loberti) and a German soldier named Werner Pfennig (Louis Hofmann) who is out to catch her. And according to PureWow’s review, “All the Light We Cannot See is an engrossing watch, and it's no wonder that Doerr sold 15 million copies with such a complex story.”

9. Lessons in Chemistry

There’s a reason this AppleTV+ series immediately became a hit for the streaming service and earned Brie Larson a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in a Limited Series. The show, based on a bestselling novel of the same name, tells the story of Elizabeth Zott (Larson), an ambitious trailblazer who goes from chemist to cooking show host trying to break constricting gender norms in the 1960s.

10. Ted Lasso

Ted Lasso follows the titular character (a former football coach played brilliantly by Jason Sudeikis) as he moves from America to Britain to coach a struggling soccer team. Even if you haven’t had the pleasure of bingeing all three seasons of this spectacular series, surely you’ve heard about it from those who have. This year marked the arrival of season three—and the departure of a main character—in what is speculated to have been the show’s final season.

11. Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story

This Bridgerton spinoff series was a hit from the moment it dropped on Netflix in May (and went on to become the third most Googled TV show of the year). The show retains the same charm, humor and beauty as the original, but explores the origin story of Queen Charlotte (Golda Rosheuvel) and her husband King George. Plus, we get fun glimpses at a young Violet Bridgerton and a young Lady Danbury.

12. And Just Like That…

The SATC gals (and their new spinoff pals) are back for season two, which is chockful of even more familiar faces. Not only does Carrie’s (Sarah Jessica Parker) former love Aidan (John Corbett) return for a full storyline, but we finally get that much-hyped cameo by Samantha (Kim Cattrall) in the season finale. While many SATC fans were critical of AJLT season one, fans were clearly happy to see Carrie and co. return to basics in a super satisfying sophomore season.

13. Faraway Downs

Anyone remember the 2008 Nicole Kidman film Australia directed by Baz Luhrmann? Us neither. But this new series on Hulu was made from the film and turned into a six episode series starring Kidman and OG co-star Hugh Jackman. The new iteration is a beautiful watch that serves romance and gasp-worthy action (in the Australian outback, of course).

14. Succession

The fourth and final season of Succession came and went this year. And while the last installment was surely groundbreaking TV, the biggest shock of the season (and perhaps the biggest shock of all 2023 television) came with the surprising demise of a fan-favorite character in the twist-filled episode three. And we’re calling it now: This show is sure to clean up come awards season.

15. Only Murders in the Building

We love a murder mystery and we love Only Murders. Though we didn’t think it was possible to top the first two seasons, the arrival of Paul Rudd and Meryl Streep in season three (along with a slew of catchy musical numbers) made this our favorite installment yet. Selena Gomez, Martin Short and Steve Martin were at their very best as they spent the season solving the murder of a famed Hollywood actor. And the twist in the final moments of the finale has us itching for season four already.

16. Loki

Whether you’re a Marvel stan or a newbie who thinks WandaVision is an A.I. toy from Facebook, you’ll probably agree: There have been way too many Marvel shows and movies as of late. And while many recent arrivals have been dull and lacking substance (*cough Quantumania cough*), the exception has to be the fabulous Loki starring Tom Hiddleston and Owen Wilson. It has action, time travel and a whole lot of laughs—and this year’s second season is just as bingeable as the first.

17. Mrs. Davis

Mrs. Davis is a fabulous, genre-bending series about a Catholic nun (Betty Gilpin) who is trying to take down a Siri-like algorithm known as Mrs. Davis. The show marries sci-fi, action and humor beautifully, and fans of the Netflix series Black Mirror will particularly love this unique twist on an artificial intelligence story (that might hit a little close to home).

18. The Last of Us

The bone-chilling new series tells the story of Joel (Pedro Pascal) who is trying to escort Ellie (Bella Ramsey) across the country during a zombie apocalypse. Not only are there a million twists along the way, but the episode featuring Nick Offerman and Murray Bartlett as a couple trying to make love work in a chaos-ridden world delivers perhaps the best 75 minutes of television all year.

19. Kaleidoscope

There’s a reason this heist series hit number one on Netflix—and it’s not just because of the talented ensemble cast led by Giancarlo Esposito. The story of a bunch of misfits trying to pull off the ultimate robbery may sound familiar, but the series made waves by allowing viewers to watch the episodes in any order. Netflix would recommend a different viewing order to each subscriber, making for a unique and fun watching experience.

20. The Crown

It was 2016 when this groundbreaking series first hit our screens, and now the sixth and final season has arrived. Telling the story of the British royal family throughout the years, The Crown has featured superb performances from three different casts. Now, in what might just be the most riveting season yet, we’ve reached one of the most tragic moments in royal history: the death of Princess Diana.

21. Heartstopper

Kit Connor and Joe Locke stole our hearts as Nick and Charlie in the first season of Heartstopper as high school love birds trying to find their footing. And now they’re back in an equally endearing second season, where Nick struggles with coming out to his friends and family, and their friends begin to have love troubles of their own.

22. Jury Duty

What if you showed up for jury duty to discover that not only is one of your fellow jurists actor James Marsden, but everything that could go bonkers is going bonkers? That’s the concept behind this groundbreaking semi-reality series where one real-life juror, Ronald Gladden, thinks he’s on an actual jury when in reality, he’s surrounded by actors pretending to be part of what is a fictional case. The result is both laugh-out-loud funny and extremely captivating.

23. Fellow Travelers

In this steamy and startling series about the secret love story between two men over the course of decades, Matt Bomer and Jonathan Bailey truly shine. Perhaps you’ll be drawn to the show because of the much-talked-about sex scenes between the leads, but you’ll stay for the drama, romance and heartbreak that ensues.

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VP, News and Entertainment; 'And Just Like That' Podcast Host; Up-And-Coming Bowler

Philip spearheads PureWow's news and entertainment team. He has 10+ years experience working in entertainment coverage and viral media, previously serving as a writer/editor...