Our days are colored by the music we listen to and the movies and television we watch, so we’re looking back at the entertainment that made the most impact in 2023. Whether you were front and center for a Barbenheimer experience or defeated Ticketmaster and got tickets to the Eras Tour, look back with us on the films, albums and shows that dominated in 2023.
Summer beamed pink thanks to Greta Gerwig’s latest director feature. Starring Margot Robbie, the iconic doll comes to life and learns the intense emotional ebbs and flows of humans and their world.
The cinematic foil to Barbie, which debuted on the same day, Christopher Nolan captures the development of the atomic bomb in this three-hour biographical thriller epic starring Cillian Murphy.
Independent film fans rallied around director Celine Song’s A24 romantic drama about childhood friends who reunite decades later and must come face to face with big life choices about love and destiny.
Emerald Fennell’s divisive psychological drama capitalizes on Jacob Elordi’s starlet charm and Barry Keoghan’s acting chops in a psychological drama with plenty of laughs, lots of style and endless shocking moments.
The Color Purple
A musical take on the renowned novel by Alice Walker, Fantasia Barrino, Taraji P. Henson, Halle Bailey, Colman Domingo and more are bringing musicals back into the conversation for awards season.
Following the 2022 release of Midnights, Taylor Swift jet-setted the globe with a cataclysmic pop tour that is already well-cemented in history and captured it all in a concert film that shattered the box office.
Also making history and inciting large economic impacts, Queen B brought last year’s Renaissance to life with a show that reminded everyone why she is the best in the industry.
Proving she’s pop’s budding future, Olivia Rodrigo stomped on any sophomore slump expectations with a second album, Guts, that was even better than her first. In 12 songs, the former Disney star bottled the uncomfortable, magical chaos of being on the precipice of young womanhood.
The notoriously pop punk band shifted from the synth alt-pop of 2017’s After Laughter to an excellent rock-forward sixth album, which was released in February. The coinciding tour reminded everyone that Hayley Williams’ has perhaps the most impressive voice in current music.
The HBO family drama took a bow at the end of May with a scrumptious final season that saw media tycoon Logan Roy and his offspring get their due.
A reality hoax sitcom, the Emmy-nominated Jury Duty may be the industry’s best example of innovative comedy television in recent memory. The eight-episode series watches juror Ronald Gladden sit on a jury where everyone except him is an actor.
With stress and the stakes higher than ever, Carmy (Jeremy Allen White) races to open a new fine dining restaurant in the place of his brother’s sandwich shop. You’ll binge season 2 to see what happens to Carmy, but you’ll stay for the adventures of Sydney (Ayo Edebiri), Richie (Ebon Moss-Bachrach) and Marcus (L-Boy) and the star-studded line-up of guests (Jamie Lee Curtis, John Mulaney, Sarah Paulson, etc.).
The Netflix limited series starring Steven Yeun and Ali Wong pictured what happens when a road rage incident goes too far.
The Last of Us
Based on the video game of the same name, the HBO adaptation of The Last of Us was far more than just another zombie show. Starring Pedr Pascal and Bella Ramsey, the post-apocalyptic drama was full of fright and gore, but even more so, it showcased the moral and emotional battle of being human.
See also: What To Watch This Month