Well, that was a satisfying ending to a season-long love affair. If not entirely right. But who cares as long as Damon Salvatore is happy.
The Vampire Diaries finished its eighth and final season by wrapping up the lives of many of its characters and establishing the journeys forward for a few. Note to network: Please let there be Hogwarts: Mystic Falls in our future.
But now that the compulsion to watch The Vampire Diaries on the filled-with-impossibly-beautiful-people CW has been lifted, what to do?
Well, there was one thing. But it was to watch Grimm on NBC, but it's gone on to glory, too. Grimm was not only binge-worthy, but it featured one of the most diverse casts on TV.
But there's hope to be found elsewhere. Also, streaming services. You may already be watching iZombie and Doctor Who, but there's plenty more supernatural where those two came from.
Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle) is having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad string of days. He gets out of prison early for the very worst of reasons and finds reluctant employment as the bodyguard of a shadowy figure, Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane). Though Shadow -- his government name -- is quick to realize he's in over his head, either his mind's blown from the tragic turn of recent events or he's just too stupid to even try get out. Either way, he finds himself as part of a brewing war between the gods of old and the new ones on the block. This is epic, much like the Neil Gaiman novel -- you'll read that phrase again in this list -- from which this series is adapted. Some of the show is hard to watch, especially the very first scenes with Bilquis (Yetide Badaki), who is the goddess of love and a certified man-eater. But one can't look away, not from that and especially when Orlando Jones shows up as Anansi, the African Trickster Spider God. Shot in a way that's reminiscent of 300 in all its bloody and stylized washed-in-the-blood glory, and just as crazy in all the best ways, American Gods premieres on April 30 at 8 p.m. on Starz. Set the DVR for a minute early, my friends; there are cold opens about how each god gets to American shores that you should not miss.
The best thing about The Originals? Don't make me start counting. The spin-off of the late, already lamented, aforementioned Vampire Diaries jumped forward five years in its fourth-season premiere in mid-March. Vampire king of New Orleans Marcel Gerard (Charles Michael Davis) had been keeping father figure and original vampire king Klaus Mikaelson (Joseph Morgan) captive. But less than five episodes in, they are forced to work together with head witch in charge Vincent Griffith (Yusuf Gatewood) against a new threat. This is another show with quite the diverse cast. And blood ready to be shed around every corner, even while the story boils down to family and all the ups and downs that come with loving them, and sometimes hating them a little. The Originals, though borne of and occasionally dabbling in Mystic Falls Vampire Diaries business even in the other's demise, is different in tone and scope and has stood ably on its own for some time now. The show airs Fridays at 7 p.m. on The CW.
God have mercy on his soul, or at least that's what the devil wishes. Lucifer Morningstar is the long-suffering child of God and "Mum," the mother of all creation (Tricia Helfer). With a demon at his side, played with complete side-eye by Lesley-Ann Brandt, and a chip on his shoulder, the bored Lord of Hell (Tom Ellis) has left his post and discarded his wings to run a nightclub called Lux and help solve homicides in Los Angeles alongside Detective -- and love interest -- Chloe Decker (Lauren German). God dispatches his brother Amenadiel (D.B. Woodside) to take him back, but not before Lucifer decides to go to therapy to deal with his "daddy issues." Heh, hasn't he realized he's still doing God's work? I've always thought of Lucifer as a tragic figure, with nowhere to go but up. And so it is in this show based on the character from the Sandman graphic novels by Neil Gaiman; that means the ancillary characters are quite wonderful. The spring premiere of Lucifer is Monday, May 1, at 8 p.m. on Fox; watch previous episodes on Hulu and Amazon Video.
Dominic Cooper plays Jesse Custer, a disillusioned small-town Texas preacher with the power of God in his hands in this adaptation of the comic. So, as any good shepherd would, he sets out to find the deity to give it back. Well, after many things are destroyed in his path. He's joined by ex-girlfriend Tulip (Oscar-nominated Ruth Negga) and vampire Cassidy. It's bloody, nasty, messy and all-out crazy. And perfect, like Tulip's nail polish that never seems to smudge whether she's building a home-made rocket launcher or giving a beat-down. Catch up on Season 1 of Preacher on amc.com or on Hulu. Season 2 premieres on Sunday, June 25, at 9 p.m. on AMC.
Based on a fantasy book trilogy by Lev Grossman, this series is magical in all the ways that matter for grown-ups: There's another land with different rules, Fillory. There's a school for magic, Brakebills University, at which characters do all the grown-up things that college students do. But it's the interpersonal stories and chemistry that make it even more compelling. That includes protagonist Quentin Coldwater, played by McKinney's Jason Ralph. The network has ordered 13 episodes of a third season that will debut next year. It aired Wednesdays at 8 on Syfy. Stream the past season on Syfy.com and Seasons 1 and 2 on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, iTunes and well, pick a service.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
The home release for Rogue One isn't quite as exciting as The Force Awakens in part because you can't pick it apart for hints about the series' future. There are no deleted scenes (you read that correctly. Zero.), and as a standalone movie, none of the other special features dive deeply into the Skywalker saga. But Rogue One is still a very good movie that any Star Wars fan should own, and if you're interested in the nuts and bolts of the film's production, there's lots of interesting stuff. There's an entire feature dedicated to everyone's new favorite droid, K-2SO, played by Texas native Alan Tudyk. -- Britton Peele
A selected list of titles out this month: The Bye Bye Man; Hidden Figures; The Good Wife: The Complete Series; Hawaii Five-O: The Complete Original Series; John Lewis: Get in the Way; Lion; Mars: Season One; Masterpiece: Home Fires -- Season 2; Monchhichis: The Complete Series; Medium: The Complete Series; Office Christmas Party; Sailor Moon R: The Movie; Sleepless; Split; Teen Titans: The Judas Contract; Star Wars: Rogue One; The Story of God with Morgan Freeman: Season Two; and Tangled Before Ever After.
Coming up the week of April 24: Animal Kingdom: The Complete First Season; Arrival; The Girl With All the Gifts; La La Land; One Punch Man; and Underworld: Blood Wars.