The 5 Best Amazon Original Shows & Movies of 2021 (So Far)

·4 min read

Netflix isn’t the only streaming platform releasing exciting new content to kick off 2021. Even though we're only 37 days into the new year (but who’s counting?), Amazon Prime has already given other services a run for their money when it comes to original programming.

From an educational TV series for kids to a heartwrenching drama centered around family, keep reading for the five best Amazon original shows and movies in 2021 (so far).

RELATED: The 10 Best Netflix Original Movies & Shows of 2021 (So Far)

1. ‘Herself’

If you’re on the hunt for something to pull at your heartstrings, look no further than Clare Dunne’s latest film, Herself. The Irish drama, which was released on the platform on January, 8, tells the story of mother who manages to escape her abusive relationship. However, as she tries to build a new life (and literally, a new home), she finds herself stuck in a broken temporary housing system and even contemplates forgiving the father of her children. But with a little help from friends and acquaintances, she might just be able to start life anew and finally free herself from the grip of her abuser. Full disclosure: Some scenes are difficult to watch, but ultimately it’s a tale of resilience and the importance of fighting for your family.

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2. ‘One Night in Miami’

Inspired by Kemp Powers's 2013 stage play of the same name, One Night in Miami centers around a fictional meeting between four legends—Malcom X, Jim Brown, Sam Cooke and Muhammad Ali. Regina King made her directorial debut with this drama that details the gathering of these four men at a hotel in Miami, where they “discuss their roles in the Civil Rights Movement and cultural upheaval of the ’60s.” While we love this one for its deep-rooted history based on actual events, it was the outstanding performances from Kingsley Ben-Adir (Peaky Blinders), Eli Goree (The 100), Aldis Hodge (Hidden Figures) and Leslie Odom Jr. (Hamilton) that really won us over. Plus, we’re always happy to support our girl Regina.

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3. ‘Flack’ Season 1

What happens when you mix Ray Donovan, The Flight Attendant and a dash of Scandal? Enter: Flack, a Prime original series that centers around a group of publicists who specialize in crisis (or as they call it, challenge) management for the rich and famous. However, while one of the firm’s leaders, Robyn (Anna Paquin), is the best in the biz, she’s definitely made a few bad decisions of her own, and getting her life in order proves more difficult than cleaning up other people’s messes. While utterly ridiculous at times, the series, which consists of six episodes, is pure entertainment.

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4. ‘Jessy and Nessy’

Perhaps you’re in need of something more educational to watch with your kids during this never-ending period of homeschooling. Jessy and Nessy is a family-friendly series about a young (and very curious) girl and her sea-monster pal who are always on the hunt for adventures in order to learn new things. Oh, and we should probably mention that Jessy is transported to an entirely hidden world when she puts on her special glasses, called Inspectacles. The series, which currently only has one season, is pure, simple fun.

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5. ‘The Great Escapist’

We’ll be honest, this one is silly more than anything else. The general premise? Richard Hammond and Tony Belleci are stuck on a desert island and must use their minds and limited resources to engineer a way off the piece of land. Honestly, some of their inventions are pretty impressive—a car made of wood and a three-story treehouse, to name a few. And while the goal is evidently to get off the island, all of their creations (made from the wreckage of their boat) actually make the vacant beach a pretty nice place to live. As we mentioned above, there’s not a ton of substance here. You won’t be sitting on the edge of your seat or left with any major cliffhangers at the end of each episode. But hey, it’s still interesting to watch two grown men who are obsessed with science stranded with nothing and no one but each other.

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RELATED: THE 8 BEST NETFLIX ORIGINAL SHOWS OF 2020