Season 4 of 'Outlander' will transport our Claire and Jamie Fraser to 18th century colonial America. Season 4 of 'Outlander' will transport our Claire and Jamie Fraser to 18th century colonial America. Season 4 of 'Outlander' will transport our Claire and Jamie Fraser to 18th century colonial America. (Photo: Outlander)

TV series we can't wait to return in 2018

From 'Outlander' to 'Homeland,' these are the shows that will likely define TV in the new year.

After a year that gave us new thrills in "Game of Thrones," chills with a long overdue return visit to "Twin Peaks," and inspiring couch time with Albert Einstein in "Genius," it's now time to turn our attention to 2018 and the series that will define the next 12 months.

Action thrillers? Check. Historical dramas? Double-check. Dragons and magical creatures? Sorry "Game of Thrones" and "Lord of the Rings" fans, we'll have to save those for 2019. In the meantime, check out a handful of the series we can't wait to curl up on the couch with and revisit in the new year.

Homeland | Season 7 | Feb. 11

Based on the Israeli series 'Prisoners of War,' the Showtime spy thriller 'Homeland' will return for a seventh season in February 2018. Based on the Israeli series 'Prisoners of War,' the Showtime spy thriller 'Homeland' will return for a seventh season in February 2018. (Photo: Showtime

In season 7 of Showtime's thriller "Homeland," Carrie Mathison, played by American actress Claire Danes, will face a most unlikely and formidable foe: the U.S. president.

The award-winning series, based on a hit television show from Israel, has previously set its dramatic events in cities like Berlin, Cape Town, Tel Aviv, and New York City. This season, the action will all center on Washington, D.C., with Mathison seeking to bring justice to a corrupt administration wrongfully targeting the intelligence community.

"There’s a degree of paranoia inside the Oval Office," American showrunner Alex Gansa told Entertainment Weekly. "There’s also a great degree of truth about the forces they’re facing and the national security establishment that is committed to politics that run counter to the administration. It’s an interesting clash of forces."

Those eager for Carrie to return to her CIA roots will be excited to learn that season 7 will once more thrust her into the inner circles of the U.S. intelligence community. Will her mentor Saul Berenson, played by American actor Mandy Patinkin, also return to lend a hand?

We'll know more after the season 7 premiere of "Homeland" on Feb. 11, 2018.


Genius | Season 2 | Sometime in 2018

Spanish actor Antonio Banderas will play artist Pablo Picasso in the second season of NatGeo's acclaimed series 'Genius.' Spanish actor Antonio Banderas will play artist Pablo Picasso in the second season of NatGeo's acclaimed series 'Genius.' (Photo: Genius)

Whereas National Geographic's "Genius" series, produced by Academy Award winners Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, focused on the life of Albert Einstein in its first season, the second will follow Pablo Picasso.

"He was an enigmatic figure, famous, a household name, and yet you don’t really know the story of his life or what inspired him, drove him, troubled him, and how through the turbulence he achieved such artistic greatness in so many different ways and modalities and over so many years," Howard said. "I think it’s that combination that made him feel like a great choice for our season 2."

Taking on the role of the eccentric Picasso is none other than Spanish actor Antonio Banderas. "The life story of Pablo Picasso has long since fascinated me and I have so much respect for this man, who also comes from my birthplace Málaga," he said.

The Emmy-nominated "Genius" is expected to bow its second season sometime in 2018.


Stranger Things | Season 3 | Late 2018

The third season of Netflix's "Stranger Things" is expected to premiere in late 2018. The third season of Netflix's "Stranger Things" is expected to premiere in late 2018. (Photo: Netflix)

After a thrilling season (and one perfectly written, John Hughes-themed ending), "Stranger Things" season 3 will once more continue the enigmatic nightmare of Hawkins, Indiana, and the otherworldly Upside Down. Co-created by the Duffer Brothers, the Netflix drama is so popular that Chicago this summer will host its own "Stranger Con" for fans.

According to Canadian producer Shawn Levy, who is also directing the highly anticipated "Uncharted" film, the unfolding story line for "Stranger Things" is expected to run for at least another two seasons.

"Hearts were heard breaking in Netflix headquarters when the brothers made four seasons sound like an official end, and I was suddenly getting phone calls from our actors' agents," Levy told Entertainment Weekly. "The truth is we're definitely going four seasons [sic] and there's very much the possibility of a fifth. Beyond that, it becomes I think very unlikely."

While details are scarce, the Duffer brothers have revealed that season 3 will take place one year after the events of season 2. They're also trying to keep the heart and focus of the series squarely on the characters.

"It's not necessarily going to be bigger in scale," Matt Duffer told IndieWire. "What I am really excited about is giving these characters an interesting journey to go on."

If it manages to cruise through production, look for "Stranger Things" to stream in late 2018.


The Orville | Season 2 | Fall 2018

The second season of Fox's scifi comedy "The Orville" will premiere in fall 2018. The second season of Fox's scifi comedy "The Orville" will premiere in fall 2018. (Photo: Fox)

"The Orville," created by American filmmaker and comedian Seth MacFarlane, is set to boldly launch a second season on Fox in 2018. While the series did not leave a stellar impression on television critics, fans have been much more welcoming; with both ratings and word-of-mouth strong. In some cases, fans of "Star Trek," the long-running space series "The Orville" spoofs, have found the show more enjoyable than the current "Star Trek: Discovery" reboot on CBS.

"Seth wanted to do a show that was for everybody," American producer David Goodman told CBR. "And I think that may be closer to the reason that people are making that connection. That, this is a show, that people don’t need to know the backstory of that universe to get into it."

The other thing "The Orville" has going for it is its extensive and impressive list of guest stars. Last season featured more than two dozen familiar faces, including Irish actor Liam Neeson, American Jeffrey Tambor and legendary Israeli character actor Brian George.

"When I cut these shows together, they always feel fun," MacFarlane told Forbes. "That’s the one thing that, whether we’re dealing with the comedy or the drama side of it, it always feels like a fun show, and I think that’s something that isn’t all that prevalent in television these days."


Outlander | Season 4 | Fall 2018

Starz 'Outlander,' an American-British drama about a woman who time travels back to the 17th century, will premiere in fall 2018. Starz 'Outlander,' an American-British drama about a woman who time travels back to the 17th century, will premiere in fall 2018. (Photo: Starz)

The fourth season of Starz's giant hit "Outlander" will shift the story from the series' roots in Scotland to 18th century colonial America. Fortunately for the cast and crew, the physical roots of the time-traveling epic will remain in Europe.

"We’ll continue to shoot in Scotland, and shoot Scotland for America, and then we’ll go to Eastern Europe and do some exterior work for the mountains and rivers," executive producer Ronald D. Moore told Collider.

Season four will be an adaptation of American author Diana Gabaldon's fourth book in the "Outlander" series titled "Drums of Autumn." New characters set to leap off the page include Aunt Jocasta, played by Irish actress Maria Doyle Kennedy, and the rogue Stephen Bonnet, played by English actor Ed Speleers.

As they've done with previous seasons, the producers have no plans to alter the fabric of Gabaldon's finely woven stories.

"I think readers of the book who still love the book will definitely recognize the story and the characters, and the general shape of the season is definitely the shape of the book as well," Moore added to Deadline.

Season 4 of "Outlander" is expected to arrive in fall 2018.

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