5 of the best sci-fi and fantasy shows
From Picard to His Dark Materials, The Mandalorian to Doctor Who, there's all sorts to look forward to
All 11 seasons of the revived BBC sci-fi show are available to catch up on BBC iPlayer – or, you could just wait for Jodie Whittaker’s upcoming second series as the Thirteenth incarnation of the Time Lord on BBC1 in early 2020.
Apparently, the new episodes will see the return of the rhino-like aliens the Judoon and (possibly) the Cybermen – so if nothing else, it might be worth catching up on the last few times we saw them in action.
Watch Doctor Who on BBC iPlayer
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
Jim Henson’s 1982 puppetry classic gave children nightmares for years – and now, a new Netflix prequel looks set to give a whole new generation reasons to keep their night lights on.
Returning to the world of Thra an undisclosed amount of time before the original film, the new series reveals what made the evil Skeksis (voiced by actors including Simon Pegg, Jason Isaacs and Dominic Wong) destroy the peaceful Gelfling civilisation in the first place, and is chock-full of incredible puppets, beautiful sets and sneaky Easter Eggs for the die-hard fans.
Watch The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance on Netflix now
Star Wars hits the small screen via Disney+ later this year, or in early 2020, with Jon Favreau’s new space western, which sees Pedro Pascal don the titular bounty hunter’s armour to take down ne’er-do-wells in a galaxy far, far away.
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Set after Return of the Jedi but before The Force Awakens, The Mandalorian explores the lawless world after the collapse of the Empire, and also stars Ming-Na Wen, Taika Waititi, Giancarlo Esposito, Carl Weathers and many others – and as the very first series on upcoming on-demand platform Disney+ it’s bound to make a splash.
Sadly, UK viewers probably won’t get to see the series when it’s released in November as it seems Disney+ is rolling out a little later here, but we’re sure The Mandalorian is worth the wait.
Everything you need to know about Disney+
Star Trek: Picard
Seventeen years after he last played him onscreen, Patrick Stewart returns as Captain Jean-Luc Picard for a follow-up series based on the Enterprise skipper’s later years, post-Starfleet, coming to Amazon Prime in 2020.
Back on his family vineyard and haunted by his past, Picard ends up pulled back into the game (that’s space travel, not three-dimensional chess) when he’s approached by a mysterious woman, in a drama said to be slower and more dramatically focused than the original Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Everything you need to know about Star Trek: Picard
His Dark Materials
Philip Pullman’s iconic novels come to the small screen on BBC1 this autumn in this starry adaptation, which boasts Lin-Manuel Miranda, James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson and Logan’s Dafne Keen among its cast.
In a parallel world where humanity’s animal souls (called dæmons) live among them, one young girl must travel north, fly with witches and battle to free her fellow children in a journey of magic, horror and self-discovery. A second series which dovetails with our own universe is already filming.