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TV preview: Upcoming shows promise an autumn filled with vampires, superheroes and more

(By Alston Kao/ Daily Bruin)

By Victoria Munck, Sanjana Chadive, Lex Wang, Puja Anand, and Paco Bacalski

Sept. 28, 2023 6:58 p.m.

New television releases are arriving with the cool, autumn wind.

Alongside the changing leaves, the fresh stirring shows of the season are sure to put audiences in the spirit of fall. Whether they’re watching an iconic film adapt to the small screen or traveling back in time for a riveting 1950s drama, viewers will certainly embrace a lengthy watchlist this autumn.

Read on to fall in love with the Daily Bruin’s seasonal selections.

[Related: Book Preview: Fall 2023 to see Britney Spears’ memoir, return of Percy Jackson]

(Courtesy of Netflix)
Edward Bluemel voices vampire hunter Richter Belmont in “Castlevania: Nocturne.” The “Castlevania” spinoff series will premiere Thursday on Netflix. (Courtesy of Netflix)

“Castlevania: Nocturne” (Netflix)

A new generation is rising to combat the vampires’ reign of terror.

Premiering Thursday on Netflix, “Castlevania: Nocturne” follows Richter Belmont (Edward Bluemel), the scion of a family of vampire hunters, as he fights to defend humanity from supernatural threats amid the backdrop of the French Revolution. Like its protagonist, the show is part of a storied legacy, being a spinoff of the critically acclaimed Netflix series “Castlevania,” which is similarly based on Konami’s long-running video game franchise of the same name.

Although the previous series ended with Richter’s ancestors defeating the forces of Dracula once and for all, a new threat is on the rise: Erzsebet Báthory (Franka Potente), a so-called vampire messiah who seeks to plunge the world into darkness. The trailer promises bloody action sequences and tense moments of terror, all rendered via the slick, stylish animation the original show was known for. Viewers can also be excited for the introduction of other iconic characters from the video games, including Maria Renard (Pixie Davies) and Annette (Thuso Mbedu).

With its combination of history and horror, “Castlevania: Nocturne” is sure to be a bloody, good time.

(Courtesy of Brooke Palmer/Prime Video)
Jaz Sinclair plays Marie Moreau in “Gen V.” Set in the same world as the hit superhero series “The Boys,” the show’s first three episodes are set to release Friday on Amazon Prime Video. (Courtesy of Brooke Palmer/Prime Video)

“Gen V” (Amazon Prime Video)

These students are stronger, smarter and better than the rest of Gen Z.

Set in the same world as the satirical science fiction television series “The Boys,” “Gen V” is flying toward a bloody premiere on Amazon Prime Video. With its first three episodes releasing Friday, the show follows a number of young superheroes, or Supes, as they compete with one another in a series of violent challenges to attain the top ranking at Godolkin University’s School of Crimefighting.

Moreover, the characters of “Gen V” are the first group of superpowered humans who are aware that their special abilities come from a chemical known as Compound V. Like “The Boys,” “Gen V” is also based on Garth Ennis’ comics, specifically the “We Gotta Go Now” arc. The series will feature several cameos involving returning characters from “The Boys,” such as speedster A-Train (Jessie T. Usher) and the disgraced hero Soldier Boy (Jensen Ackles).

Clearly, “Gen V” is shaping up to be the ultimate superhero battle royale.

(Courtesy of Gareth Gatrell/Marvel)
Ke Huy Quan, Wunmi Mosaku, Tom Hiddleston and Owen Wilson (left to right) star in “Loki.” Season two of the Marvel series will premiere Oct. 5 on Disney+. (Courtesy of Gareth Gatrell/Marvel)

“Loki” season two (Disney+)

The god of mischief may hold some new tricks up his sleeve.

Following the cliff-hanging finale in season one, “Loki” will be back with six more episodes on Disney+. Set to premiere Oct. 5 after initially announcing a release date of Oct. 6, the latest season will feature the titular antihero Loki (Tom Hiddleston) – who will seek to monitor the timeline more closely perhaps than Marvel Studios – in his quest across the multiverse to save himself and his friends, including characters Sylvie (Sophia Di Martino) and Ravonna Renslayer (Gugu Mbatha-Raw).

The series, which was created as part of Phase Four in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, promises to continue using retro-scifism in its visual influences. Punctuated by ultramodern machinery still suggestive of an earlier decade, the Time Variance Authority’s headquarters features a contrast between dull gray and orange tones, which creates the feeling of existing simultaneously in the past and future for audiences. Amid a dramatically suspenseful soundtrack, the trailer seems to guarantee the mystery and intrigue of last season – but only time will tell.

Within the tapestry of an ever-expanding multiverse, the newest misadventures of Loki will undoubtedly transcend dimensions.

(Courtesy of Apple TV+)
Brie Larson stars as Elizabeth Zott in “Lessons in Chemistry.” Based on Bonnie Garmus’ book of the same name, the drama, which is set in the 1950s, will premiere Oct. 13 on Apple TV+. (Courtesy of Apple TV+)

“Lessons in Chemistry” (Apple TV+)

Brie Larson is back with another saga of women’s empowerment.

Based on Bonnie Garmus’ best-selling novel of the same name, “Lessons In Chemistry” premieres Oct. 13 on Apple TV+. Set in the 1950s, the American drama follows scientist Elizabeth Zott (Brie Larson) and her battle with the patriarchal ideals of society. The eight-episode show also stars Lewis Pullman and Aja Naomi King alongside Larson as supporting roles.

Blatantly fired from her male-dominated chemistry lab, Zott begins hosting a television cooking show with a twist. Through her newfound platform, the former scientist introduces her audience of housewives to much more than baked potatoes – the knowledge of science that society deemed exclusive to men. With a serenade of Harry Styles’ “Sign of the Times,” the trailer hints at the expectations, emotions and complexity of being a woman, concluding with the empowering dialogue, “Children, set the table – your mother needs a moment to herself.”

With its retro style, sepia tones and heartfelt acting, the upcoming series is sure to teach lessons much beyond chemistry.

[Related: TV preview: New seasons of beloved shows shine with romance, comedy this summer]

(Courtesy of Netflix)
Mark Webber, Alison Pill and Michael Cera voice Stephen, Kim and Scott in “Scott Pilgrim Takes Off.” A retelling of the hit film “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World,” the animated series will release Nov. 17 on Netflix. (Courtesy of Netflix)

“Scott Pilgrim Takes Off” (Netflix)

Sex Bob-Omb’s reunion tour is kicking off in a big way.

Over a decade after the release of the cult classic film “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World,” Scott’s dynamic story is being retold for television. Boasting the art style of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s graphic novels, which inspired the original movie, “Scott Pilgrim Takes Off” will reach Netflix on Nov. 17. Developed by O’Malley and BenDavid Grabinski, the new anime series will employ eight episodes to follow the awkward bass guitarist on his humorous, action-packed adventures.

To the delight of the film’s avid fanbase, the movie’s complete original cast will be reprising their roles to voice the show’s animated characters. Michael Cera will return to lead as Scott Pilgrim alongside a star-studded ensemble consisting of Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Kieran Culkin, Brie Larson and Aubrey Plaza. Series music will also be delivered by the pop band behind the Scott Pilgrim video game soundtrack, Anamanaguchi, ensuring rocking entertainment for longtime supporters and new viewers alike.

Audiences should brace themselves for Scott Pilgrim’s epic comeback against the world.

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Victoria Munck | Theater | film | television editor
Munck is the 2023-2024 theater | film | television editor. She was previously an Arts contributor from 2022-2023. She is a second-year communication student from Granada Hills, California.
Munck is the 2023-2024 theater | film | television editor. She was previously an Arts contributor from 2022-2023. She is a second-year communication student from Granada Hills, California.
Sanjana Chadive | Lifestyle editor
Chadive is the 2023-2024 lifestyle editor. She was previously an Arts staff writer from 2022-2023. She is a third-year comparative literature student from Garnet Valley, Pennsylvania.
Chadive is the 2023-2024 lifestyle editor. She was previously an Arts staff writer from 2022-2023. She is a third-year comparative literature student from Garnet Valley, Pennsylvania.
Lex Wang | Enterprise editor
Wang is the 2023-2024 Enterprise editor. Previously, she was the 2022-2023 Opinion editor, and prior to that, an assistant Opinion editor. She is Arts and Quad staff and also contributes to News, Sports on the men's volleyball beat, Copy, Design, Photo and Video.
Wang is the 2023-2024 Enterprise editor. Previously, she was the 2022-2023 Opinion editor, and prior to that, an assistant Opinion editor. She is Arts and Quad staff and also contributes to News, Sports on the men's volleyball beat, Copy, Design, Photo and Video.
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