“Summer’s end is around the bend just flyin’” according to the great John E. Prine and Patrick James McLaughlin, whose song “Summer’s End” appeared in Season 2 of “The Summer I Turned Pretty” covered by Phoebe Bridgers and Maria Taylor. This applies to reality as the seasons and months change, but also to Jenny Han’s “The Summer I Turned Pretty,” which just wrapped its second season on Prime Video. Don’t blink though, because even though Season 3 is delayed due to the ongoing strikes, it will likely be the last one.
If you’re looking for ways to extend the trip even after that heartbreaking Season 2 finale, TheWrap has gathered a list of shows like “The Summer I Turned Pretty” that you can binge in the meantime.
One of the best parts of making this list was realizing that there is truly no show that captures the essence of summer and young love like “The Summer I Turned Pretty” does, so we don’t have to worry about its uniqueness getting challenged. There are, however, a lot of young adult shows out there, whether dramas or comedies, that capture the rollercoaster of adolescence and parenthood in similar ways. Han has several projects to turn to if you appreciate her magic touch, specifically.
Here are 10 shows to fill the hole in your heart (from which one Conrad Fisher was evicted) after watching “The Summer I Turned Pretty”:
“XO, Kitty” – Netflix
Jenny Han’s other show features Anna Cathcart as Katherine “Kitty” Song Covey in her own adventure spinning off from the “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” films, adapted from Han’s other best-selling trilogy. Kitty’s adventures studying abroad in Korea lead to more of a love rectangle if you really think about it. As the creator, Han remains very involved with the show — which also stars Gina Kim as Yuri, Anthony Keyvan as Q, Choi Minyeong as Dae and Sang Heon Lee as Minho. Season 1 of “XO, Kitty” is now streaming on Netflix, and the series received a Season 2 renewal, though that occurred during the writers’ strike and right before the actors’ strike began. Fun fact, Jocelyn Shelfo, who plays Madison in “XO, Kitty,” also appears as Marisa in “The Summer I Turned Pretty.”
“Gilmore Girls” – Netflix
As we transition into fall, “Gilmore Girls” is the perfect show to replace your summertime sadness. Season 2 even alluded to one of Rory Gilmore’s (Alexis Bledel) iconic white sweaters, with Belly wearing one just like it at Thanksgiving dinner. Replace Conrad with Dean, and you’re set. While Belly and Laurel’s relationship is nowhere near Rory and her mother Lorelai’s (Lauren Graham), the mother-daughter dynamics sometimes replicate the friendship Laurel and Susannah share, though a mother-daughter relationship can get dicey when it involves friendship too, as Kyra Sedgwick, who portrays Susannah’s half-sister Aunt Julia in Season 2, shared when she chatted with TheWrap about her character’s bond with Skye (Elsie Fisher).
“The Vampire Diaries” – Peacock and Max
Damon, Stephen and Elena walked so that Conrad, Jeremiah and Belly could run. Many fans pointed out parallels between “The Summer I Turned Pretty” and “The Vampire Diaries,” which also follows a young woman (Nina Dobrev) torn between two brothers — the older brother whose romance spouts intense fights while the younger brother’s tenderness provides a safety our heroines also crave. Both shows feature a crucial Débutante Ball scene in which one brother steps up as the other falters, as well as a down-to-the-wire choice scene in a motel. While “The Summer I Turned Pretty” fulfills summer’s nostalgic, airy energy, “TVD” turns the page to fall and winter as Mystic Falls stirs up an added element of mystery and vampires to this love triangle.
“Boo, Bitch” – Netflix
“To All the Boys” star Lana Condor helms Netflix’s “Boo Bitch” series. A paranormal “Booksmart” of sorts, Erika Vu and her best friend Gia (Zoe Colletti) make a last-ditch effort to rise in the social rankings at their high school, but a slight wrench gets thrown in the plan when Erika dies. She haunts school as a ghost of sorts, and the series takes on the afterlife in an attempt to bring Erika back across from the other side. The eight-episode show is streaming on Netflix.
“The O.C.” – Hulu
This nostalgic teen drama brings all the slow-burn vibes as Seth not-so silently pines for Summer from his childhood through his adolescence in the same way Belly dreams of Conrad. The sunny Orange County beach and the nearby pier emulate ever-lasting summer vibes found in the Prime Video series, while “The O.C.” brings the sunshine all year long. While Ryan and Seth thankfully avoid a love interest getting in between their friendship, the adoptive brothers go through their fair share of turmoil as every new school dance, family event and college admissions decision unleashes chaos among the friend group.
“Never Have I Ever” – Netflix
Mindy Kaling’s Netflix comedy series just wrapped four seasons of a high school love triangle between Maitreyi Ramakrishnan’s Devi Vishwakumar, Jaren Lewinson’s Ben Gross and Darren Barnet’s Paxton Hall-Yoshida. “Never Have I Ever” matches the drama of “The Summer I Turned Pretty” with its comedy, though of course there are many heartfelt moments between Devi and her mother as well as the boys.
“Outer Banks” – Netflix
“Outer Banks” matches the adventurousness and rambunctious mischief that “The Summer I Turned Pretty” occasionally features. It’s more of a pirates and treasure hunt summer vibe than a pining for two brothers vibe, but this show screams summer, beach and young love in its own ways. As Madelyn Cline pulls off similar beach looks to Belly, love triangles also dominate the Netflix series as Kiara (Madison Bailey) struggles to decide between budding romances with longtime friends JJ (Rudy Pankow) and Pope (Jonathan Daviss).
“Bridgerton” – Netflix
“Bridgerton” might be the most wistful of shows on this list, on the level with “The Summer I Turned Pretty.” Based on the book series by Julia Quinn and brought to life by Shonda Rhimes, the first two seasons of the romantic drama are available to watch on Netflix. The anthology series focuses on one member of the Bridgerton per season. So far, viewers have watched Daphne (Phoebe Dynevor) and Antony (Jonathan Bailey) fall head over heels for unexpected partners Simon Basset, Duke of Hastings (Regé-Jean Page) and Kate Sharma (Simone Ashley). Season 1 tackled the fake-dating trope, and Season 2 took on the enemies-to-lovers trope. Season 3 is anticipated to launch soon, focusing on the real heart of the series — Penelope (Nicola Coughlan) and Colin (Luke Newton).
“Dash & Lily” – Netflix
It’s never early for Christmas, and even “The Summer I Turned Pretty” Season 2 has Christmas scenes. Another book adaptation that spotlights a romance specifically during the Christmas season is “Dash & Lily.” Two New Yorkers, Lily (Midori Francis) who loves Christmas and Dash (Austin Abrams) who remains skeptical about it, cross paths thanks to Lily’s placement of a particular book on a particular shelf in the Strand bookstore. Moody, broody Dash might remind some people of Conrad, and Lily of course embodies all of the energy and enthusiasm that Belly does. The first (and only) season is available to stream on Netflix.
“Firefly Lane” – Netflix
If you’re missing Laurel Park’s (Jackie Chung) and Susannah Fisher’s (Rachel Blanchard) friendship, look no further than “Firefly Lane” on Netflix. Adapted from Kristin Hannah’s best-selling novel, the two-season series stars Sarah Chalke as Kate Mularkey and Katherine Heigl as Tully Hart, two best friends who fatefully met when they were neighbors on Firefly Lane. Tully and Kate’s friendship path flashes back from their present adult and middle-aged lives. They’ve been through a lot, and they are nowhere near perfect, but they also at first have tension over one man, until he very clearly chooses one girl, like Belly (Lola Tung) should really choose one Fisher brother.
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