Queens was definitely one of the best hip-hop shows in recent years.
But after just one season, the musical TV drama, Queens was canceled in May 2022. The show starred Eve, Naturi Naughton, Nadine Velazquez, and Brandy Norwood. It followed four women, estranged and out-of-touch, who reunite for a chance to regain their fame as the ’90s girl group that made them legends in the hip-hop world.
Even with just one season, the show was very popular with viewers. The Hollywood Reporter credited the show’s success to its leading ladies and the way they were authentically able to embody their hip-hop characters. “When these women get to making music together, the experience is riveting enough to carry Queens over any bumps and snags that might otherwise get in the way of a good time,” stated The Hollywood Reporter. It’s no wonder Queens was a hit with ‘90s hip-hop and R&B fans considering three of the four leading ladies were successful singers during that time.
Never fear though — there are definitely other shows that can work just as well!
If you’re missing the show and are looking for other TV series that also star iconic hip-hop sensations, here’s a list of 5 shows you should be watching.
Queen Latifah ('The Equalizer')
Queen Latifah plays Robyn McCall, a.k.a. “the Equalizer“, a divorced single mother and former CIA operative. McCall uses her particular set of extensive skills to help those with nowhere else to turn. The CBS show is a re-imagining of the 1980s series The Equalizer, starring the late Edward Woodward. As a teen, Latifah was actually a fan of the original series and worked hard to give a different spin to the role, especially since her casting was the first time the titular role was played by a strong Black woman.
Ice-T ('Law & Order: SVU')
Ice-T plays Detective Odafin ‘Fin’ Tutuola in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. The series follows the Special Victims Unit, a specially trained squad of detectives in the New York City Police Department’s 16th precinct, who investigate sexually related crimes. Ice-T was originally only going to do four episodes of the show but after he joined in the second season he became one of the leading stars for 22 seasons. Ice-T has also crossed over into other shows in the shared universe as the no-nonsense NYPD detective.
LL Cool J ('NCIS: Los Angeles')
Rapper LL Cool J made the transition to television in the 2000s including starring in the CBS crime drama NCIS: Los Angeles. LL Cool J plays Special Agent Sam Hanna, an undercover operative assigned to the Office of Special Projects, a special branch of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. The branch takes on undercover, hard-to-crack cases in Los Angeles. LL Cool J reportedly decided to join the cast of NCIS because he caught the acting bug and wanted to explore it further by being in an ongoing TV series.
Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino ('Atlanta')
The popular series, Atlanta was reportedly ranked as the highest-rated show starring a rap artist, based on IMDb scores. The show premiered on FX in 2016 with rapper/actor Donald Glover in the lead role. Glover plays Earnest “Earn” Marks, a manager who’s trying to help his cousin, Paper Boi, become a rap sensation. Glover has also written and directed some of the show’s episodes. The show was a critically acclaimed success, winning tons of awards including Golden Globes and Emmys. Keep an eye out for the highly anticipated fourth season, slated to premiere in 2023.
Dave Burd aka Lil Dicky ('Dave')
In 2020, FXX released the comedy television series Dave, which stars rap artist David Andrew Burd, better known by his stage name Lil Dicky. The show was co-created by the rapper and comedian. The series centers around a fictionalized version of Lil Dicky, who plays a neurotic man who believes that he is destined to be one of the best rappers of all time. Lil Dicky received positive critical acclaim for his series and has an average IMDb rating of 8.3 by users. Critics have described the show as a mix of Curb Your Enthusiasm and Atlanta.