Ghosts is finally back for Season 2, but it's scary how long the wait for new episodes can feel. Sure, Thursday nights are taken care of, but what about every other night of the week? There's no need to wander aimlessly all around your haunted house-turned-haunted B&B, trying to figure out how you'll fill this hole in your schedule (and in your floor). If you're a fan of the charming CBS comedy, which follows young Brooklyn couple Sam (Rose McIver) and Jay (Utkarsh Ambudkar) as they move into a mansion with a lot of undead residents, there are plenty of similar shows waiting to haunt you, in a fun way.
Ghosts is a high-concept comedy that could easily be gimmicky, but the whole thing is infused with such humor and heart and topped with such great cast chemistry that it's hard to not be charmed by it almost immediately. For more shows that deal with the afterlife, the mingling of the living and the dead, or supernatural beings just trying to live their lives, check out the list below.
You'd think you'd have to choose between the original U.K. version of Ghosts or the CBS remake, but surprisingly, there's room to love both. The premise is (obviously) the same, many of the storylines are the same — although the original version is three seasons deep — and many of the characters are either exactly the same (troop leader with an arrow through his neck? check!) or pretty similar but have been Americanized for the remake (the pantsless, douchey Wall Street guy was originally a pantsless, douchey member of Parliament). And yet still, the original has its own distinct feel thanks to its British sensibilities and the chemistry between this particular cast. No reason not to double the amount of Ghosts in your life.
For another original take on the dead and living interacting, try Bryan Fuller's short-lived early 2000s dramedy Dead Like Me. A young, dissatisfied temp worker named George dies and joins the ranks of reapers — people who have died but are unable to pass on until they reap a certain amount of souls. Their job is to take a person's soul right before they die and help guide them to the afterlife. Once the reaper hits their quota, they can pass on, too. So, in Ghosts-language, this show is basically all about trying to get sucked off. It's weird and funny and moving — everything you'd expect from a Bryan Fuller show — and has a great cast that includes Mandy Patinkin, Jasmine Guy, and Rebecca Gayheart.
It's a shame iZombie never really took off, because Rose McIver was over here doing work for five seasons. She plays Liv Moore, who is a medical resident until the day she gets turned into a zombie. Instead of killing to get her human brains fix, Liv takes a job as a medical examiner at a morgue and she realizes that when she eats someone's brains she begins to not only take on their personality traits for a short time, but also gets some of their memories. So, when someone is, say, murdered, she can get some clues to solve that murder straight from the source. It's a fun, wacky procedural with a great supporting cast — especially Rahul Kohli as Liv's boss at the morgue and Malcolm Goodwin as the detective Liv uses her power to assist — and watching McIver take on completely new personalities each episode is a treat.
For a different perspective on the afterlife, there's Upload. Created by Greg Daniels (The Office, Parks and Recreation), Upload imagines a future in which people can upload their consciousness into a digital afterlife of their choosing when they die. The series follows computer programmer Nathan (Robbie Amell) who dies unexpectedly (and suspiciously, if you catch my drift) and gets uploaded into the afterlife his demanding girlfriend has chosen. He ends up bonding with his afterlife guide/angel/customer service rep Nora (Andy Allo), who is still alive. The show blends an examination of Big Tech, some light mystery, and romantic comedy and has only gotten stronger in its second season.
Come on, if you want to watch cool explorations of the afterlife, you need more than one Bryan Fuller show in your life. If you missed out on the surprising, wacky, wonderful Pushing Daisies when its two seasons aired from 2007 to 2009, now is the time to correct that mistake. Lee Pace stars as Ned, a maker of pies who can also bring dead things back to life with just his touch — but if he touches that thing or person again, it will die permanently. That poses a problem when Ned raises his childhood love Chuck (Anna Friel) from the dead and they fall for each other but, alas, can never touch (cling wrap has never been so romantic). Ned uses his ability as a side business, helping private investigator Emerson Cod (Chi McBride) solve murders. With vibrant visuals and playful writing, Pushing Daisies excels at being both a procedural and a romance.
A comedy about supernatural beings living outside of their original time in a house together could describe both Ghosts and the hilarious vampire mockumentary What We Do in the Shadows. Based on the movie of the same name by Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement, the TV adaptation finds four vampires — Nandor (Kayvan Novak), Laszlo (Matt Berry), Nadja (Natasia Demetriou), and "energy vampire" Colin (Mark Proksch) — sharing a home in Staten Island and attempting to blend in with the modern world. Harvey Guillén is excellent as Nandor's familiar — his beleaguered assistant who dreams of one day becoming a vampire. It's as goofy as they come, and perhaps like vampires themselves, the show gets better with age.
Although they may not explicitly say it, most of the ghosts on Ghosts are trying to be better people than they were when they were alive, which is a sentiment baked into afterlife comedy The Good Place, as well. Created by Michael Schur (Parks and Recreation), The Good Place dives deep into philosophy, existential dread and somehow makes it all fun, funny, and heartwarming — I know, I'm as surprised as you are. Actually, I'm not that surprised when the cast is led by Kristen Bell, as dirtbag from Arizona Eleanor, and Ted Danson, as Michael, a well-dressed other-worldly being trying to reinvent the afterlife. When Eleanor suddenly dies, she learns that there is a detailed point system for your actions on Earth that will send you to either the Good Place or the Bad Place and while she parses it all out, she's joined by other now dead humans trying to figure it out: anxious moral philosophy professor Chidi (William Jackson Harper), very tall socialite Tahani (Jameela Jamil), and a character I won't ruin for people who've yet to see, played with aplomb by Manny Jacinto, as well as an all knowing not-a-robot being named Janet (D'Arcy Carden). The less you know going in, the better. But know this: It'll make you think, it'll make you laugh, and it'll make you cry. Just keep it sleazy for me, OK?