86 Of The Best TV Shows To Stream On HBO Max In August

·67 min read

Before we get into it, yes, HBO Max is clearly going through something right now. But let’s not let their messiness keep us from enjoying some of their best content — while we still can. Although subscribers were forced to say an abrupt goodbye to Run, Camping, and (this one hurts) Mrs. Fletcher, there are still plenty of great shows coming our way in the near future. From the quasi Game of Thrones comeback series, House of the Dragon (which will no doubt have some pretty big armor to fill), to a new season of the seemingly sort of random but nevertheless great Selena Gomez cooking show! Here are the best TV shows you can still watch on HBO Max this month — and don't worry, And Just Like That... isn't going anywhere.

1.100 Foot Wave (2021–)

a still from 100 Foot Wave with Garrett McNamara surfing a huge wave

Do you like experiencing secondhand anxiety? Thoroughly enjoyed the experience of watching Free Solo, but kinda wished there was more water and risk of drowning involved? Then you’re going to LOVE 100 Foot Wave. This six-episode docuseries follows big wave surfer Garrett McNamara, who is fearlessly (and often recklessly) chasing his dream of surfing a 100-foot-tall wave. In his pursuit of said ever-elusive, record-breaking wave, McNamara and his wife, Nicole, are credited with putting the small Portugal fishing village, Nazare, on the surfing map, drawing other big wave surfers to the destination known for its massive waves. 100 Foot Wave has been renewed for a second season — meaning, despite his repeated life-threatening injuries, McNamara plans to paddle right back out in search of the big one. And I, for one, can’t wait to nervously cheer him on in Season 2.

Watch it on HBO Max.


2.*Abbott Elementary (2021—)

Quinta Brunson in Abbott Elementary

Everybody’s favorite overworked, under-appreciated, and nevertheless undeterred elementary school teacher is making her way to HBO Max. Abbott Elementary takes a mockumentary style approach to exploring the often political ins and outs of the public school system, and the heroic teachers determined to fix it (or at the very least, endure it). Created by and starring BuzzFeed alum Quinta Brunson, Abbott Elementary is a heartwarming and hilarious love letter to teachers and their wacky, wonderful students. The entire first season of Abbott Elementary is now available to stream on HBO Max — and don’t worry, Season 2 is on its way.

Watch it on HBO Max August 20.


3.A Black Lady Sketch Show (2019–)

Skye Townsend, Ashley Nicole Black, Robin Thede and Gabrielle Dennis in A Black Lady Sketch Show

Featuring the first sketch series cast made up entirely of Black women performing sketches dreamt up by a writer’s room made up entirely of Black women, A Black Lady Sketch Show will undoubtedly fill a void in your comedy lineup. Each episode features hyper-relevant and incredibly hilarious sketches and boasts a rotating roster of celebrity guests. This newest season promises appearances by Ava DuVernay, Michaela Jaé Rodriguez, Raven-Symoné, Wanda Sykes, David Alan Grier, Kyla Pratt, and more. Hurry up and watch the new season quick, before the pop culture references feel outdated (roughly 14 business days following each episode’s premiere).

Watch it on HBO Max.

Tina Thorpe/HBO

4.Adventure Time (2010–18)

Ice King and Princess Bubblegum in "Adventure Time"

If you thought this animated adventure series was just for kids, try telling that to its legions of fans spanning all ages. One of the internet’s favorite cartoons (seriously), Adventure Time follows Finn, a 12-year-old boy, and his best friend Jake, a 28-year-old magical dog who changes size and shape as he pleases. The pair lives in the post-apocalyptic land of Ooo, a place ravaged long ago by a nuclear war. In their adventures, they meet a roster of now-pop-culture-beloved characters including the Ice King, BMO (a name that was a strong contender for my dog), Lumpy Space Princess, and, of course, the two halves of the couple “Bubbline,” aka Princess Bubblegum and Marceline. Because it’s about time for the ruler of the Candy Kingdom to have a vampire girlfriend. The original nine seasons of Adventure Time and the anthology-style spinoff Adventure Time: Distant Lands are available to watch on the platform.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Cartoon Network / Courtesy Everett Collection

5.And Just Like That... (2021–)

A promo image of Miranda, Carrie, and Charlotte in "And Just Like That..."

Let's not let awkward Peloton deaths, Miranda's character 180, Che's comedy, and everyone acting way older than they actually are ruin this Sex and the City revival. In And Just Like That..., we return to find former newspaper columnist Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) as a struggling podcast personality with a very random fashion Instagram account (despite her tech aversions). Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) is back to school, and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) is attempting to be supermom. Moving on from the stinging wound that is Samantha Jones' absence, I still firmly believe there's time for And Just Like That... to find the Sex and the City magic we've all been missing. Fingers crossed that Season 2 is where our ladies really find their stride.

Watch it on HBO Max.


6.The Baby (2022)

Natasha holding the baby in a laundry basket in The Baby

Personally, the concept of motherhood is a unique type of terrifying to me. The Baby blends that parental strain of horror with a very British™ brand of humor for a comedic cocktail that’ll likely keep you on the edge of your seat — though whether it’ll be in anticipation of a punchline or jump scare is TBD. Natasha (Michelle de Swarte) is uninterested in children, but when a weirdly powerful and manipulative infant quite literally crash-lands in her lap, she finds the role of "mother" being thrust upon her. The other catch? It appears The Baby’s titular baby is a harbinger for death to all who take an interest in him. Now Natasha has to grapple with her role in raising this adorable potential murderer. As one of the characters so perfectly puts it in the series trailer, “It’s just a lot, all the time, forever.”

Watch it on HBO Max.

Rekha Garton/HBO

7.Barry (2018–)

Bill Hader on the phone in Barry

Spoiler alert for "Barry" Season 2

Following a hiatus so long only Bill Hader could get away with it, everyone’s favorite contract killer is finally back. Season 2 of Barry left the talented and occasionally deadly thespian in quite the bind, with his two worlds — cold-blooded murder and acting — colliding after his former handler (for, you know, murder-adjacent things) informed his current acting coach, Gene M. Cousineau, (Henry Winkler) about his after-class activities. Namely, the time Barry killed Gene’s girlfriend. It’s Bill Hader, guns, and acting chops a-blazing through every single episode alongside a cast that’s pretty tough to not fall in love with (but do be careful about who you fall for, because the people in Barry’s life tend to wind up dead pretty often).

Watch it on HBO Max.

Aaron Epstein / HBO

8.Boardwalk Empire (2010–14)

A still from "Boardwalk Empire"

A 1920s crime drama starring Steve Buscemi — need I say more? Boardwalk Empire follows Enoch "Nucky" Thompson, inspired by historical figure Enoch L. Johnson. Atlantic City treasurer-turned-bootlegger, Nucky rises to power in the early days of the Prohibition era, building a liquor-fueled empire and brushing elbows with other shady, historical characters. With a cinematic aesthetic established by Martin Scorsese, a heaping portion of HBO-style nudity and violence, and 20 Emmy Awards under its belt, Boardwalk Empire is a show you shouldn’t skip out on.

Watch it on HBO Max.


9.Chernobyl (2019)

A still from "Chernobyl" with two scientists in a lab together

Oh, good, a story about a global disaster grossly mishandled by government officials. We need more of that in our lives. Fortunately, every element of Chernobyl makes it worth the watch — maybe it’ll be cathartic? Stellan Skarsgård (Mamma Mia!), Jared Harris (The Crown), and Emily Watson (Punch-Drunk Love) all received Emmy nominations for their roles in the five-part miniseries that depicts the events surrounding the 1986 Chernobyl disaster. Although the series notably takes some creative liberties, Chernobyl has overall received praise for its attention to detail and accuracy when retelling the story of the worst nuclear disaster in history.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Liam Daniel-HBO / The Hollywood Archive / Alamy

10.Doctor Who (2005–)

A still from "Doctor Who" of the Doctor and Amy standing on a beach next to the Tardis

Every episode of Doctor Who is now available to stream exclusively on HBO Max. The BBC sci-fi show has been around for so long that it’d be quite the challenge to not know anything about it (a challenge I attempted throughout most of my high school years before ultimately succumbing to the phenomenon). Whether you’re a Matt Smith stan or more drawn to David Tennant’s gut-wrenching stint on the show, there are 13 series of the reimagined Doctor Who and 26 seasons of the classic to dive into. News just broke that we’ll be getting a new Doctor soon, so try not to get too attached to the lovely Jodie Whittaker.

Watch it on HBO Max.


11.Enlightened (2011–13)

Laura Dern and Luke Wilson in "Enlightened"

Sure, we all give Laura Dern the respect and adoration she so rightfully deserves now, but even before Little Women and Big Little Lies, Laura was giving us work worth rewatching again and again. Enlightened follows Amy Jellicoe, an overtired corporate cog on the verge of what the show calls “a nervous breakthrough.” Queen of shamelessly screaming and crying in public (aspirational, to say the least), Amy spends two months on a holistic healing retreat after suffering a somewhat self-induced implosion of both her personal and professional life. She returns a “changed” woman with a meditation schedule, searching for the chance to be an agent of more change. Luke Wilson (Legally Blonde) and Laura’s real-life mother join her in this two-season exploration of what it means to hit rock bottom and bounce back.

Watch it on HBO Max.


12.Euphoria (2019–)

A still from "Euphoria" where Rue is resting with her eyes closed in a diner booth

Before Zendaya was a totally badass Fremen in Dune, she was the completely compelling and sympathetic teenager Rue in HBO’s Euphoria. Basically, she's giving us all a run for our money with costume ideas. Hunter Schafer, Sydney Sweeney (The White Lotus), Jacob Elordi (The Kissing Booth), and Barbie Ferreira (Unpregnant) also star in this teen drama that had every well-meaning parent who unfortunately gave Euphoria a shot (including my own) asking their young adult children, “Is this show accurate?” Please, nobody answer that. Beyond the sex, drugs, and underground raves, Euphoria’s got true heart, grit, and some legendary outfits. Season 2 is finally gracing our screen, bearing slightly more subtle (but still iconic) makeup looks and a whole new set of very adult issues for our favorite teens to attempt to handle (however poorly). Catch up now so we can all discuss.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Eddy Chen/HBO

13.FBOY Island (2021—)

The three FBOY island contestants with host Nikki Glasser

You can say a lot about FBOY Island, from its godawful name to its even worse-on-paper premise. But in a sea of absolutely rancid reality dating shows, FBOY Island is among the most honest ones out there, because it's honest about (at least) half the contestants being total trash. Each season, three ladies looking for love come to FBOY Island, where 26 men are waiting to woo them. The catch? Half of these guys are self proclaimed “nice guys” (you know how THAT goes) and half identify — willingly, for some reason — as “Fboys.” After a season filled with mostly typical reality dating antics, our three bizarrely masochistic bachelorettes pick their future partners and find out their true identity. If they select nice guys, each new couple gets $100,000, but if they pick an Fboy, said Fboy gets to keep that money all for himself. It’s twisted and terrible, and I promise you won’t be able to turn it off.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Ramon Naquid/HBO Max

14.The Flight Attendant (2020–)

Cassie holding binoculars in "The Flight Attendant"

If you know and love Kaley Cuoco from The Big Bang Theory, well, you can definitely trust me when I say the sitcom actor was certainly holding back from us and we get to see a much clearer picture of her talent in The Flight Attendant. Kaley plays Cassie Bowden, a charming and well-meaning but intolerably reckless alcoholic who enjoys drinking on the job as a flight attendant and flirting with her passengers. But after her flirtation goes a step further while on a flight to Bangkok, Cassie wakes up and finds her impromptu date dead. In a state of shock, she clumsily attempts to clean up evidence of a murder she’s (mostly) sure she didn’t commit and returns home to her life in NYC. Obviously, things do not go up from there. Zosia Mamet (Girls, Dickinson) and Michiel Huisman (The Age of Adaline) both shine as the respective devil and angel on Cassie’s shoulders, and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina's Michelle Gomez makes for a sinister and surprising villain in the show. Despite initially being branded as a “limited series,” The Flight Attendant's second season has just touched down on the platform, and features, to my unbridled delight, the addition of not one, but two (2) of my crushes: Mae Martin and Margaret Cho.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Jennifer Rose Clasen / HBO Max

15.Frayed (2019–)

a still of Sammy and her two children from Frayed

Frayed is one of those shows you stumble upon and immediately wonder why it isn’t being ravenously discussed by the fans of similar series like Fleabag or Crashing (basically anything with Phoebe Waller-Bridge). This absurdly funny and chaotic series stars (and was created by) stand-up comic Sarah Kendall as Sammy Cooper, an Australian living the life as a London socialite who goes by Simone. After her husband unexpectedly passes, Sammy learns that her husband had secrets of his own, and his estate must be frozen and subsequently sold off. So left with no money, Sammy brings her kids, Lenny and Tess, back to her family in her hometown of Newcastle, Australia, after over two decades away. The trio are not met with any tearful and joyous reunions, but find Sammy’s former family members understandably upset over her sudden departure from their lives. The series takes a very Search Party-style turn toward the end of the first season, setting up Season 2 to pivot genres and really play with the show’s boundaries in both comedic and dramatic ways. In typical British and Australian TV fashion, all two seasons of Frayed unfold in just 12 episodes, making this bizarre comedy an easy weekend binge.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Lisa Tomasetti/HBO Max

16.The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (1990–96)

Will Smith in "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air"

Now this is a story all about how Will Smith’s life got flipped-turned upside down. The zany sitcom that launched Will into stardom is now available to binge in full on HBO Max, so you can watch Will play basically himself as he’s shipped off to live with his wealthy family in Bel-Air after just one little fight. AND there’s even a reunion special. (It’s over a year old. How did we miss that one, y’all?) Plus, in even bigger Bel-Air news: Bel-Air, the hour-long drama reimagining of Smith’s sitcom, is available on Peacock, so now is the perfect time to get reacquainted with the Banks family.

Watch it on HBO Max.

NBC / Courtesy Everett Collection

17.Friends (1994–2004)

David Schwimmer as Ross Geller, Matt LeBlanc as Joey Tribbiani, Matthew Perry as Chandler Bing, Lisa Kudrow as Phoebe Buffay, Jennifer Aniston as Rachel Green, and Courteney Cox as Monica Geller

Did anyone ever settle the Jennifer Aniston and David Schwimmer dating rumors that started circulating again after the reunion special? No one told me life was going to be this way — that I’d still be shipping these two after all this time... Anyway, speaking of the Friends reunion, you really can skip it, I promise. Instead, take a walk down memory lane to our favorite pair of apartments and try to sort out which character you feel the most like, why it isn't Phoebe, and why you wish it was. This NYC-based sitcom has some of the best holiday episodes in TV history, so now is the perfect time of year to switch on the OG comfort show, clap along to the theme song, and kick back with Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Joey, and everyone’s collective favorite Phoebe.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Paul Drinkwater / NBCUniversal / Via Getty Images

18.Game of Thrones (2011–19)

Daenerys Targaryen and Jon Snow in "Game of Thrones"

Before the airing of what I think will go down in history as one of the most controversial final seasons in television history, Game of Thrones was the show to be watching. The bloodthirsty fantasy series launched the careers of some of the most significant celebrities in the zeitgeist right now (I’m looking at you, Sophie Turner), so if you know Emilia Clarke as the lovely Lou Clark from Me Before You, you’re in for some Earth-shattering viewing sessions. The series is for the most part based on the books by George R. R. Martin. Only they had to go vaguely off-text at the end there. Maybe that’s what led to the Starbucks cup incident. At face value, this series can feel like a true "you had to be there" moment for TV, but it’s also incredibly bingeable and set in a world wide enough to lose yourself in, a rare quality to find in some of the copycat series that have followed.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Helen Sloan/HBO

19.Gentleman Jack (2019–)

Sophie Rundle and Suranne Jones about to kiss in Gentleman Jack

How I made it this far in life without learning the epic #herstory of 19th-century lesbian landowner Anne Lister is beyond me, but in case you’ve also been living under this apparent rock, here’s the lowdown: Beyond being a gay icon, Lister was an avid diarist and recounted a large portion of her life, particularly her love life, through literal secret code in her journal. The HBO drama Gentleman Jack provides a refreshingly accurate portrayal of Lister’s life that features an unbelievably talented (and drop-dead gorgeous) cast adorned in period clothing that, in my humble (and correct) opinion, puts Bridgerton to shame. The second season of Gentleman Jack has just arrived on the platform, and so far I think it can be best summed up by a quote from another one of my favorite period piece girlies: “I just feel like…women.”

Watch it on HBO Max.

Aimee Spinks / BBC / Lookout Point / HBO

20.Ghosts (UK) (2019–)

A still from Ghosts where Alison has a ghost staring her straight in the face and she doesn't know it

This wholesome supernatural comedy comes from the BBC, but don't worry: Unlike some of its fellow BBC shows, Ghosts has plenty of episodes for you to enjoy (20, to be exact). Alison (Charlotte Ritchie, Feel Good) and Mike (Kiell Smith-Bynoe) are the inheritors of Button House, a stunning old mansion that is falling to pieces and, unbeknownst to them, absolutely teeming with spirits. The couple draw up plans to turn the property into a luxury hotel, and their ghostly guests in turn take up the task of scaring the new residents away. But after one of their antics goes too far, Alison winds up nearly dead, which leaves her with a new ability to finally see her new mansion-mates. Ghosts is jam-packed with comically gifted ghouls, including Lolly Adefope (Shrill), Jim Howick (Sex Education) and the unlikable (but lovable) Simon Farnaby (Paddington 2). It’s a hauntingly good cast with some scary good writing, and following in the footsteps of many great British comedies before it, it's already been transformed into a charming American adaptation.

Watch it on HBO Max.


21.Girls (2012–17)

Lena Dunham, Zosia Mamet, and Jemima Kirk in "Girls"

Adam Driver has lived many lives. Most recently, he’s portrayed a man fighting for his life to maintain an Italian accent, but he’s also been a divorced father, an utterly dreamy Star Wars villain, the object of John Oliver’s affection, and — before all of that — Lena Dunham’s flighty and foolish but charming on-again-off-again boyfriend in the Judd Apatow–produced comedy series Girls. The show that launched Lena into the not-always-kind spotlight, Girls follows a privileged NYC writer and her dysfunctionally funny circle of friends. Allison Williams (Get Out), Jemima Kirke (Sex Education), and Zosia Mamet (The Flight Attendant) also star in this heavily criticized and critically acclaimed dramedy. If for no other reason, give the origin story of TikTok’s “Good Soup” sound a little attention.

Watch it on HBO Max.


22.The Gilded Age (2022–)

The cast of the Gilded Age seated in a parlor

Costumes, accents, excessive wealth! The Gilded Age has got all this and more. Is And Just Like That... not fulfilling your desire for a series about sophisticated New York women? This period piece about the Old New York™ one-percenters comes from Downton Abbey writer and producer Julian Fellowes, and (conveniently) also stars Cynthia Nixon. After her father’s passing, Marian Brook must move to New York City to reside with her aunts Agnes van Rhijn (Christine Baranski, The Good Fight) and Ada Brook, two well-established members of the New York aristocracy. But between Marian’s penniless past and some glamorous new neighbors, Agnes and Ada have their work cut out for them. Fellowes has already addressed the expected accusations that this series will become Downton Abbey 2.0 (and really, what would be so wrong about that?), but this drama is ready to forge a new path, adorned in absolutely fantastic set-dressing, all on its own.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Alison Rosa/HBO

23.Gordita Chronicles (2022)

The Castelli family in their car together in Gordita Chronicles

It’s 1985 and Cucu “Gordita” Castelli’s family is leaving the Dominican Republic for Miami, Florida, where everyone “Looks like Madonna…even the boys.” Gordita Chronicles handles culture shock, coming of age, and the raw reality behind the American dream, packaged neatly inside the familiar family comedy plot. The show boasts some big names involved behind the scenes, including Zoe Saldaña’s company, Cinestar Pictures and Osprey Productions, and a pilot directed by Desperate Housewives’ Eva Longoria (who also has an executive producer credit for the series). With big '80s hair and an even bigger heart, Gordita Chronicles is poised to be a must-watch series.

Watch it on HBO Max June 23.


24.Gossip Girl (2021–)

A still of Julien and Zoya in "Gossip Girl"

After several months on hiatus, the Gossip Girl reboot is back and better than ever. Well, OK, better relative to this current reboot, not the original. Look, this new Gossip Girl doesn’t have our Serena and Blair, nor is there a Chuck Bass anywhere in sight. And we all know Dan Humphrey has retreated into the world of Joe Goldberg, utilizing his observational skills in a new (and significantly creepier) way. But don’t count the reboot out just yet. Our seemingly omniscient blog has made its way over to Instagram with some new, not-at-all-secret (or age-appropriate) owners with a plan to hold the arrogant and overly privileged students of Constance Billard accountable for their frequently rude, often reckless behavior. This time around, we’ve got a half-sister rivalry and a handful of real-life NYC influencers to entertain us in that guilty pleasure way that is very much of the Gossip Girl brand. Though it might not be the OG, with each scandal, this new generation of Gossip Girl is finding its highly dramatized footing. XOXO...

Watch it on HBO Max.

Karolina Wojtasik/HBO Max

25.Hacks (2021–)

Jean Smart and Hannah Einbinder in "Hacks"

This generational comedy stars Jean Smart (Mare of Easttown, Watchmen) as Deborah Vance, a past-her-prime comedian who has been relegated to a regular show on the Las Vegas Strip, and real-life comedian Hannah Einbinder as Ava, a newly unemployed TV writer under fire for some controversial tweets. The two form an odd-couple-style partnership after being set up by their agent in common and set out to revive Deborah's career. If the meta nature of this comedy show about comedy doesn't draw you in, perhaps Hacks' fresh female perspective on the comedian narrative will. And if you still need convincing, know that the chemistry between this dynamic duo, both on- and off-screen, is electric, or as Hannah put it in her interview on Late Night With Seth Meyers, "Jean and I have this awesome little joke where she's mean to me and I'm in love with her."

All that chemistry, both comedic and otherwise, was enough to get Hacks a second, equally rib-busting season. Will Deborah/Jean finally soften towards Ava/Hannah? Tune in to find out (but probably not, to be honest).

Watch it on HBO Max.

Karen Ballard/HBO Max

26.Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (2022)

Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe sitting together in a still from Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts

From the (debatably) oversaturated sea of reboots and reunions rises the one we’ve all been waiting for, Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts. Twenty years after the first magical moments of Harry Potter graced our screens, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and practically anyone else you’ve been dreaming of seeing stride through the halls of Hogwarts again are back for the anniversary special of, well, the decade. Look, it’s a reunion special, so you don’t need a plot summary — you just need to stock up on tissues. So if you haven’t yet booked your return ticket to your Harry Potter phase, it’s time.

Watch it on HBO Max.


27.*House of the Dragon (2022)

Eve Best in House of the Dragon

Struggling to fill the Game of Thrones-sized hole in your heart after Season 8 (or, if we’re being completely honest here, Season 7)? Now, you won’t have to! Because on August 21, the reign of House Targaryen begins. This Game of Thrones prequel series, based on George R.R. Martin’s Fire & Blood, takes place 200 years before the start of the GOT we all know and to various extents remember. House of the Dragon will forgo the expansive cast of its predecessor, and focus mainly on the members of the Targaryen family (The inclusion of Starbucks cups is still TBD). To those who didn’t jump on the GOT band-dragon the first time around, have no fear, apparently, House of the Dragon should make sense to viewers of all backgrounds, whether you’ve got an iron throne tattoo or have only seen that one episode where Ed Sheeran shows up for some reason…

Watch it on HBO Max August 21.

Ollie Upton / HBO

28.*House of Ho (2020—)

Aunt Tina, Kim Ho, Bella Ho, Washington Ho, Judy Ho, Nate Nguyễn, Binh Ho, Hue Ho in House of Ho

Sure, the long-awaited House of the Dragon premiere is exciting, but let’s not forget about another, far more lavish house: House of Ho. The second season of this absolutely wild reality series following the absurdly wealthy Vietnamese-American family, the Hos, arrives at the end of the month. Binh and Hue are immigrants who managed to build a multimillion-dollar empire in Houston, Texas. But their daily lives involve less glam and more micromanagement of their adult children, Judy and Washington. This show’s got everything: lavish shopping sequences, multi-generational clashes, and family secrets so shocking I feel like some of them maybe shouldn’t have been aired on TV…

Watch it on HBO Max.

Callaghan O’Hare/HBO Max

29.I May Destroy You (2020)

A still of Arabella at the dinner table

Arabella is a millennial icon. The Twitter star and author of the book “Chronicles of a Fed-Up Millennial” is struggling to meet a deadline on her sophomore book’s draft when she decides to grab a drink with a friend in London. Arabella wakes up the next morning having lost a huge chunk of time from her life, forcing her to reassess everything and attempt to retrace her steps with her friends Terry (Weruche Opia) and Kwame (Paapa Essiedu, Gangs of London) to fill in the blanks in her memory. I May Destroy You is about consent, and so much more. Across its 12 episodes, the show explores trauma, deceit, denial, sexism, racism, homophobia, the meaning of friendship and the commodification of Black pain, all while maintaining a darkly humorous tone that will keep you engaged, no matter how painful the show gets. This miniseries, birthed entirely from the genius mind of Chewing Gum’s Michaela Coel (who retained full creative control over the show) should have innumerable awards to boast about. Despite its notorious awards season snubs, it undoubtedly deserves a top spot on your watchlist.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Natalie Seery/HBO

30.Insecure (2016–21)

A still of Issa and Lawrence in "Insecure"

Partially based on Issa Rae’s acclaimed web series Awkward Black Girl, Insecure is five seasons' worth of heartwarming hilarity. Issa and Molly (Yvonne Orji) are best friends who both grew up in South Los Angeles. The pair work wildly different jobs: Molly as a corporate attorney and Issa as a nonprofit worker dealing with middle school students of color. The series follows the two friends’ different (but at times equally awkward) experiences as Black women, and Season 5 brings viewers full circle, back to the same questions these women have struggled with throughout the entire series: Will Issa stay with her boyfriend? Will Molly and Issa be able to maintain their friendship? Regardless of what happens, with Issa Rae leading the charge, it’s guaranteed to be entertaining.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Glen Wilson/HBO

31.Irma Vep (2022)

Mira wearing her catsuit costume against the Paris skyline in Irma Vep

Enjoyed Paramount+’s The Offer but thought the meta series about the behind-the-scenes production of an iconic film was lacking a disconcerting, fever-dream-esque quality to leave you feeling unsettled after viewing? Enter Irma Vep. This vampiric miniseries, from the filmmaker behind the 1990s film of the same name, follows Mira (the consistently cool Alicia Vikander), a reluctant Hollywood star who heads to Paris to play the villain in a remake of the French silent film Les Vampires. To briefly summarize (something the director of Les Vampires very clearly struggled to do), Mira goes method, and things go awry. This series is a tad pretentious, pretty gay, and entirely enticing. It also debuted with a 100% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes… Gay catsuit-cloaked villainous vampires for the win.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Carole Bethuel/HBO

32.Jerrod Carmichael: Rothaniel (2022)

Jerrod onstage in Rothaniel

Directed by Bo Burnham, Jerrod Carmichael’s newest stand-up special, Rothaniel, offers a glimpse, bathed in blue light, into the future of comedy specials. Part confessional, part group therapy, with just the right level of humor to keep you from spiraling and slamming the laptop when the one-sided conversation veers toward discomfort, this strikingly intimate special will stay with you long after the 55-minute run time comes to a close.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Courtesy of HBO

33.Julia (2022)

Julia Child pouring wine into a pot in Julia

Were you, like me, thoroughly let down by the 2009 film Julie & Julia? Well, thankfully, a new series, simply titled Julia, intends to wash away the bad taste in your mouth left from the Nora Ephron movie. Julia follows Julia Child through the early days of her cooking career and her experience pioneering the modern cooking show with her long-running TV program, The French Chef. It also delves deep into her personal life and her marriage, and examines her position as a game changer in American culture. Not to get my hopes up too much, but based simply on the trailer I think we’re finally getting the feminist figure version of Julia Child that I thought I’d be getting in Julie & Julia. Fingers crossed.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Seacia Pavao/HBO

34.The Last Movie Stars (2022)

An old photo of Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman

Years ago, movie star Paul Newman commissioned screenwriter Steward Stern to interview Newman's friends and family for a memoir he planned to put out. After it was ultimately scrapped, the tapes were doused in gasoline and lit on fire for some reason(?), but not before they were transcribed. Now, with the help of George Clooney, Zoe Kazan, Laura Linney, Sam Rockwell, Oscar Isaac, and more irrefutably gigantic Hollywood names, Ethan Hawke (Father of Stranger Things star Maya Hawke, for anybody who may be confused) is bringing those transcripts to life in a six-part docuseries. The Last Movie Stars explores Newman and Joanne Woodward’s illustrious careers and beloved love story with the (likely) goal of making every single viewer sob uncontrollably and develop an unhealthy longing for Old Hollywood™.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Courtesy of CNN+

35.Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (2014–)

John Oliver at his desk on "Last Week Tonight With John Oliver"

OK, yes, nearly all the news is terrible. But what if you could learn about said awful news from a self-aware, semi-condescending British comedian who has somehow convinced his producers to allow him to consistently bully the show's sponsors on air, publicly thirst after Adam Driver, and spend exorbitant amounts of money on press stunts — including setting up a tax-exempt religious organization, purchasing (and then forgiving) $15 million in medical debt, and purchasing Russell Crowe’s leather jockstrap from the 2005 film Cinderella Man for $7,000? Last Week Tonight With John Oliver is belly-laugh-inducing, rage-fueling, quality news satire that will piss you off and keep you well informed on all the issues that matter, from his main topics of every show to the segment “And Now, This,” which frequently pokes fun at actual TV journalists and daytime TV hosts, and (in my personal opinion) makes every episode, no matter how dark or heavy, worth the watch.

Watch it on HBO Max.


36.The Leftovers (2014–17)

Justin Theroux in The Leftfovers

What happens when a huge chunk of the world’s population just suddenly vanishes? Before Marvel’s Infinity War tried it, The Leftovers proposed an answer. Long story short, everyone understandably flips out. The Leftovers follows the Garvey family three years after the "Sudden Departure,” which is what they’ve named the unexplained disappearance of 2% of the world’s population. Mainstream religions partly fall apart and give way to freaky cults, one of which Kevin Garvey Jr.’s (Justin Theroux, Wanderlust) wife (Amy Brenneman, Judging Amy) has left their family to join. From the co-creator of Lost, this supernatural mystery series is guaranteed to leave you with a lot of feelings, and I can’t promise they’ll all be positive, but this show is quite the experience and will certainly keep you on the edge of your couch.

Watch it on HBO Max.

MILLENNIUM FILMS / All Star Picture Library / Alamy Stock Photo

37.Lovecraft Country (2020)

A still from "Lovecraft Country"

Lovecraft Country is based on a book by the same name, and executive-produced by Jordan Peele, two immediate green flags right off the bat. In an effort to find his missing father, Atticus Freeman (Jonathan Majors), his friend Letitia (Jurnee Smollett), and his uncle George (Courtney B. Vance) venture on a road trip across a segregated 1950s America. On their journey, the group quickly realizes that the racist horrors of white America aren't the only monsters they need to be wary of. This supernatural series has the J.J. Abrams touch, meaning it’ll leave you with so many questions unanswered and yet you won’t be able to stop watching.Watch it on HBO Max.

Eli Joshua Ade/HBO

38.Love Life (2020–)

A still of Marcus in "Love Life"

In the first season of this rom-com anthology series, we got an endearingly misguided, people-pleasing Darby (Anna Kendrick) stumbling through relationships with hardly any hope (but in a fun and entertaining way that’s totally not sad). This time around, we get William Jackson Harper (The Good Place, Midsommar) as Marcus, who suddenly finds himself single after engaging in some definitely shady emotional cheating and actively sabotaging his marriage. This isn’t the adamantly ethical Chidi Anagonye we all know and love. Marcus is rough around the edges in the way that makes for the best kind of TV. The best part of the nature of this show? Each season can stand alone, so if you don’t want to go back and catch up on Season 1, you can still easily dive right into the midlife crisis surrounding action in Season 2.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Sarah Shatz / HBO Max

39.Made for Love (2021–)

Cristin Milioti in "Made for Love"

Finally, Cristin Milioti is getting the attention she so rightfully deserves. The thoroughly underrated Palm Springs actor stars as Hazel, the wife of tech billionaire Byron, played by Billy Magnussen (Game Night, No Time to Die) in Made for Love. After emerging from a 10-year stint living in a VR paradise of his making, the tech mogul determines that the best course of action to keep his marriage healthy is to, in Stepford-wife style, implant a chip into his wife's brain that will allow him to track her, see through her eyes, and study her emotional data. After Hazel escapes from her husband's villainous clutches (don't worry, it's really not a spoiler), she runs off to hide out at her estranged father's place. Nobody does "trapped in some scary sci-fi scenario" quite like Cristin, and she definitely doesn't disappoint in this horrifyingly hilarious series, which is currently in its second, equally gripping season.

Watch it on HBO Max.


40.Mare of Easttown (2021)

Kate Winslet in "Mare of Easttown"

Small-town police detective and high school basketball hero Mare Sheehan (Kate Winslet) is struggling to solve the murder of a local girl when another body turns up in her close-knit Pennsylvania community, where every resident appears to have a skeleton or two in the closet. County Detective Colin Zabel (Evan Peters, American Horror Story) arrives to help out on both cases, but things just grow more complicated from there. If you’re looking to feel nervous about your own small-town community or just watch the British Titanic star struggle with a Delco accent, then this Emmy-winning series is totally for you.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Michele K. Short/HBO

41.Minx (2022–)

Jake Johnson and Ophelia Lovibond talking in Minx

As a ride or die New Girl fan, I will champion practically anything featuring Jake Johnson, but even if that scruffy man didn’t have my heart in the palm of his hand, I’d still be going to bat for this fantastic, vaguely pornographic new series. The show follows the overzealous Joyce (Ophelia Lovibond, Guardians of the Galaxy), who has big dreams of launching a revolutionary magazine called The Matriarchy Awakens to expose young women to the beauties of feminism. But it’s the 1970s, so of course no man in publishing is interested. That is, until Joyce finds Doug (Johnson). Doug possesses a heart of gold underneath a hearty layer of slime, and a keen eye for the porn business. Together, the pair launch the first erotic magazine for women with the goal of spoon-feeding radical politics to their readers between scandalous spreads of naked men. Minx is raunchy and fun, and much like its editorial namesake, will likely spoon-feed its viewers some larger ideas about subverting the male gaze and subsequently the patriarchy (or so I hope). This show’s got a gorgeous setting, a wildly entertaining cast, and Jake Johnson in chronically unbuttoned shirts. What’s not to love?

Watch it on HBO Max.

Katrina Marcinowski/HBO

42.My Mom, Your Dad (2022)

A still of a romantic date from My Mom, Your Dad

Is the secondhand embarrassment you’re getting from this season of The Bachelor just not enough for you? Enter: My Mom, Your Dad, an absolute fever dream of a reality series created by the people who gave us the gifts of Love Island, Queer Eye, FBOY Island, and so much more fantastic unscripted content. Hosted by Insecure’s Yvonne Orji, My Mom, Your Dad follows a group of single parents all nominated for a second chance at love (via reality dating show) by their college-aged kids. Don’t worry, it only gets more awkward from there. In typical reality TV fashion, all these parents move into a house together, entirely unaware that the cameras aren’t just broadcasting their every move to HBO Max, but directly to their adult children, down the street in their own house. The kids get to provide commentary on all their parents' choices, and also hand select who their parents get matched up with for one-on-one dates — totally fine and normal. This absolute horror show of a series unfortunately has a lot of heart to go hand in hand with the endless cringeworthy moments. Fans of reality TV will not be disappointed.

Watch it on HBO Max.


43.The Nanny (1993–99)

Ray Romano, Fran Drescher, and Rachel Chagall in "The Nanny"

If you haven’t seen The Nanny and for some odd reason you need a push to add it to your queue, Fran Fine gave us some of the most unforgettable fashion inspiration from the '90s. And if the simple but sweet antics of a Jewish fashionista from Queens don’t rope you in, the style content should do so. The premise of The Nanny is actually quite similar to that of the film The Sound of Music, or rather, the parts of The Sound of Music that we retained from our childhoods — why did we all collectively forget about part two? Anyway, you’ve got a vivacious woman waltzing into the mansion of the Sheffield family to become the children’s larger-than-life nanny and (not-so-spoiler alert) eventually marrying the patriarch of the bunch. This quintessential '90s sitcom arrived on HBO Max in April and has been having a moment ever since. It’s even in the works to become a Broadway musical soon.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Cliff Lipson / CBS / Courtesy Everett Collection

44.Naomi (2022)

Naomi in Naomi

Canceled too soon, Ava DuVernay's DC superhero drama, Naomi, is now available on HBO Max — is this a hail Mary pass to secure a second, streaming-exclusive season? Only time (and ratings) will tell. Naomi follows the titular Superman-obsessed teen (played by Kaci Walfall) living an average life in a small town until one day, her superpowers begin to manifest. Attempting to learn more about her origin story, Naomi learns that her and her favorite superhero have a lot more in common than she thought. Does this show sound eerily similar to the recently released Disney+ series Ms. Marvel? Yes. But can we ever have too much multiverse content? Not in this universe.

Watch it on HBO Max.

The CW

45.The Night Of (2016)

Nasir staring at someone in prison in the night of

I know our watchlists are already drowning under the number of crime shows — true or not — so trust that if I‘m recommending you add yet another gritty, suspenseful series to the queue, it’s worth it. The Night Of follows Nasir “Naz” Khan, a Pakistani-American college student who borrows his dad’s taxi cab to get himself to a party in Manhattan and winds up ending the night in jail, arrested for murder. The Night Of is a harsh but elegant investigation into the criminal justice system packed into a puzzle you won’t want to pause. And since it’s only made up of eight hour-long episodes, you hypothetically don’t have to.

Watch it on HBO Max.


46.Nikki Glaser: Good Clean Filth (2022)

Nikki Glaser performing onstage

Cool, calm, and crass, Nikki Glaser’s first HBO comedy special is everything you could possibly want from the comic my boyfriend so affectionately referred to as “yassified Carrie Bradshaw” while he floated in and out of the living room half judging, half laughing. I've written it before, and I'll recycle it now, if my boyfriend can't sit all the way through a standup special, that's a definite green flag for the comic in question. You'll laugh, you'll shudder, you'll learn information you’ll have wished you hadn't, and if you're anything like me, you'll fall head over heels for Nikki Glaser in Good Clean Filth.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Adam Rose / HBO

47.The O.C. (2003–07)

Mischa Barton, Peter Gallagher, Kelly Rowan, Benjamin McKenzie, Adam Brody, and Rachel Bilson in "The O.C."

As much as we love the teen shows of today like Riverdale, the new Gossip Girl, Outer Banks, etc., they’ve got literally nothing on the teen dramas of the early 2000s. Set in stunning Newport Beach, California, The O.C. follows troubled teen Ryan Atwood (Ben McKenzie, Gotham) as he adjusts to his new wealthy community after being taken in by Kirsten (Kelly Rowan, Hook) and Sandy Cohen (Peter Gallagher, Burlesque, American Beauty). This series has got everything: romance, drama, the pressures of getting into the right college, and *spoiler alert* actual murder. They just don’t make them like this anymore…or rather, they do, but it feels so played out these days. And speaking of early 2000s teen shows, The O.C. is also responsible for stealing Dave Rygalski (Adam Brody) away from Lane. If that’s not a good indicator of the show’s cultural significance, I don’t know what is.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Warner Bros / Everett Collection

48.Olive Kitteridge (2014)

Frances McDormand

To call Olive Kitteridge a TV show feels vaguely insulting (no offense to all the other fantastic shows on this list) because the four-part miniseries more closely resembles several Oscarworthy films or a spectacularly bootlegged Broadway play. Frances McDormand (Three Billboards, Nomadland) is Olive Kitteridge, a middle school math teacher residing in a seaside town in Maine. The story unfolds over 25 years and explores the intricacies of small-town life and the highs and lows of the human experience. Richard Jenkins (The Shape of Water) stars as Olive’s husband. The ever-charming Zoe Kazan (The Big Sick) portrays a somehow still-charming hurdle in the Kitteridge marriage, and Bill Murray makes an appearance in the second half of the series as the widower Jack Kennison. What is it about these not-so-sleepy small towns that makes for a great miniseries? Who can say. Regardless, Olive Kitteridge is worth the nearly four-hour commitment.

Watch it on HBO Max.

HBO / Album / Alamy Stock Photo

49.The Other Two (2018–)

Molly Shannon and Case Walker in "The Other Two"

How would you feel if your 13-year-old brother suddenly became the next Justin Bieber? The Other Two follows the elder siblings of an overnight pop sensation while they attempt to navigate their own lives as millennials who feel they "missed their wave." Real-life TikToker Case Walker stars as the aforementioned teen celebrity, while Molly Shannon (Saturday Night Live, The White Lotus) absolutely shines as his fame-famished mother. The Other Two takes every assumption you'd make about the family it follows and flips it on its head between laugh-out-loud funny jokes and cutting commentary on the world of modern-day celebrities.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Jon Pack / HBO Max

50.Our Flag Means Death (2022–)

The pirate crew in our flag means death staring up at the sky together

What do you get when you combine Pirates of the Caribbean with What We Do in the Shadows, add in an ensemble cast with comedy legends like Fred Armisen, Leslie Jones, Kristen Schaal, Nick Kroll and Will Arnett, PLUS give Taika Waititi an absolutely fantastic beard? Our Flag Means Death. Inspired by the true adventures of Stede Bonnet (played in the show by Rhys Darby, Flight of the Conchords), a privileged aristocrat who gave up everything to become a pirate captain, Our Flag Means Death follows Bonnet’s new crew aboard the ship called Revenge. After struggling to gain any respect as a pirate due to his soft and wealthy background, Captain Bonnet, branding himself as the “gentleman pirate” befriends the icon, the legend, Captain Blackbeard (Waititi). It’s a workplace comedy like no other, and it sells its swashbuckling absurdity with ease. And again, Taika Waititi in that beard? Shiver me timbers.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Aaron Epstein/HBO Max

51.Painting With John (2021–)

John Lurie sitting in the forest outside his home

Do you miss long, meandering chats with your own father? Consider popping on Painting With John. About to drop its second season, this oddball unscripted program insists that despite its painting premise, it’s nothing like The Joy of Painting. “Bob Ross was wrong. Everybody can’t paint, it’s not true,” Painting With John’s titular John proclaims in the series trailer. John Lurie is a musician, actor, director, and painter, and all of these creative trades are woven into this uniquely entertaining program. John sits at his worktable, or in his backyard on what he describes as “a tiny island in the Caribbean,'' and shares some less than child-friendly anecdotes as he paints “miserable” trees. The show is cinematically soothing and thoroughly captivating, and Season 2 will be out on Feb. 18. No painting materials needed.

Watch it on HBO Max.


52.PAUSE with Sam Jay (2021–)

Sam Jay in a courtroom in a judges chair in Pause with Sam Jay

The always delightful Sam Jay hosts this experimental late-night talk show that serves as the perfect solution for when you’re feeling social but don’t actually want to socialize. Each episode, Sam throws a party in her apartment and turns the resulting conversations about pressing cultural issues into episode topics, rounding them out with sketch comedy, animation, and follow-up interviews. It’s funny, fresh, and incredibly engaging, just like the comedian co-creator herself.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Stephanie Mei-Ling/HBO

53.Peacemaker (2022–)

John Cena and Freddie Stroma in Peacemaker

Our favorite overly muscled murderer is back in James Gunn’s Suicide Squad spinoff series, Peacemaker. Sure, the last Suicide Squad film spent roughly half an hour successfully coaxing us into hating John Cena’s patriotic and severely misguided hero, but that's all in the past now. The spinoff series catches up with Christopher Smith, aka Peacemaker, post-recovery from the bullet that Idris Elba’s Bloodsport put through his head. This time around, he's been recruited for a brand-new mysterious (and morally questionable) assignment, Project: Butterfly. His new team consists of the lovable Danielle Brooks (Orange Is the New Black), Jennifer Holland (American Horror Story: Asylum), Freddie Stroma (Harry Potter), Chukwudi Iwuji (The Underground Railroad), and Steve Agee (New Girl’s iconic Outside Dave). It looks like in his episodic format, Peacemaker is finally figuring out how to achieve some character growth, but maybe the hero willing to do anything for peace (even, and sometimes especially, kill) is just testing out some new methods.

Watch it on HBO Max.


54.Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin (2022)

Bailee Madison in Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin

They’re baaaack (sort of). There are no words more promising than “From the creators of Riverdale and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” and so, coupled with the genius concept of turning the next chapter in the Pretty Little Liars franchise into a slasher, I am tentatively (extremely) excited about Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin. This new generation of liars live in the blue-collar town of Millwood where, 20 years ago, some Carrie-esque situation went down and then was basically never dealt with…until now. Will this bloody slasher sequel have anything more than a flimsy, one-off sentence connection to its namesake? TBD. But regardless of where this new PLL spinoff takes us, I will most definitely be along for the ride.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Karolina Wojtasik/HBO Max

55.Raised by Wolves (2020–)

A still from raised by wolves of Mother walking through the jungle

Raised by Wolves features all the greatest aspects of classic sci-fi stories, steeped in religious lore, against — dare I say — new and excitingly fresh backdrops. Mother (Amanda Collin) and Father (Abubakar Salim) are two androids sent to the planet Kepler-22b following a violent, Earth-destroying war between atheists and the Mithraics, a religious group who worship the sun. The two androids are tasked with raising a new generation of human children to lay the groundwork for a future atheist civilization. After about a decade of their adopted family growing up in their chosen desert landscape, a colony of Mithraic survivors show up to lay claim to the planet as their own. Season 2 finds Mother and Father and the children having relocated to somewhere much more tropical, but trust me when I say it won’t be the family vacation we’ve all been hoping for. In summation, whether android or human, parenting is rough.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Coco Van Oppens / HBO Max

56.Rap Sh!t (2022)

Aida Osman, KaMillion in Rap Sh!t

By this point, I think we all understand that everything Issa Rae touches turns to gold, and there’s no doubt that her latest project, Rap Sh!t, will follow suit. Starring Love & Hip Hop: Miami’s KaMillion and comedian and Crooked Media podcast host, Aida Osman, the series follows two estranged friends from high school who are struggling in adulthood and desperately want to break into the Miami rap scene. Setting their differences aside, the duo decide to form a rap group (and reignite their heartwarming friendship).

Watch it on HBO Max.

Alicia Vera/HBO Max

57.The Rehearsal (2022)

A man drinking coffee on a rocking chair

It’s Nathan Fielder’s world, and we’re just livin’ in it. The Rehearsal is an absolute headache of a show that I’m not sure I should, in good faith, be recommending to anyone not looking to have at least a little bit of an existential crisis. And yet, here we are. The Nathan for You star’s newest show, The Rehearsal, is built on the idea that practice makes perfect. Simple enough, right? With the help of real and for some reason consenting participants, Fielder takes scenarios participants are nervous about experiencing, and runs a rehearsal. From fessing up to a casual lie to tackling what it’s like to be a mother, Fielder runs through “scenes” with participants inside mind-blowing replica sets of the real life spaces in participants’ lives. It’s incredibly difficult to watch, and even more difficult to pull yourself away from. I apologize in advance.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Allyson Riggs

58.Rick and Morty (2013–)

Rick, Summer and Morty from Rick and Morty

And speaking of worlds you can get lost in, Rick and Morty manages to deliver season after season of mind-bending entertainment. The Adult Swim series came out swinging — albeit drunkenly — in Season 1 and hasn’t stopped throwing punches since. Whether you’re in it for the shocking moments of sentimentality that break through Rick’s never-quite-sober stupor or the sheer absurdity crammed into every episode, I never thought I’d write these words, but there’s something for everyone in this animated log of interdimensional space travel, even if you don’t get the Szechuan sauce hype.

Watch the first four seasons on HBO Max.

Adult Swim

59.The Righteous Gemstones (2019–)

A still of Adam DeVine performing onstage in The Righteous Gemstones

If you have a Succession-sized hole in your heart after the shocking Season 3 finale, then it might be time to let The Righteous Gemstones take the wheel. This dark comedy follows the Gemstone family as they run their scam-laden business as televangelists and megachurch pastors. This satirical take on televangelism has all the beloved trappings of Succession, including but not limited to: selfish and immature adult children (Danny McBride, Adam DeVine, Edi Patterson), a morally questionable patriarch tasked with reining in the family drama (John Goodman), and an excess of wealth and ego. After a two-year pandemic-induced hiatus, The Righteous Gemstones returns for its sophomore season with the much-welcome addition of Eric André and Jason Schwartzman.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Ryan Green/HBO

60.Scenes From a Marriage (2021)

A still of Mira and Jonathan from "Scenes From a Marriage"

Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain have palpable, near-painful chemistry in this limited series, based on the 1973 Swedish miniseries of the same name. That viral red carpet arm kiss situation at the Venice Film Festival offered up just a mere hint of the power this pair is packing in each of the five parts of Scenes From a Marriage. Mira is a tech executive with big ambitions for her career and much less hope for her marriage, and Jonathan is her intellectual, philosophy professor husband who clings to the dream of making their marriage work. This heart-wrenching study of relationships is far from what I’d deem a comforting show to experience. But despite the fascinating fourth wall breaks that dare you to distance yourself from the storyline, it is wholly engaging to say the least.Watch it on HBO Max.

Jojo Whilden/HBO

61.Search Party (2016–22)

Dory, Drew, Elliott, and Portia shopping at a pet store in "Search Party"

Alia Shawkat (Arrested Development) stars as the twentysomething Dory, who finds herself feeling dissatisfied with everything from her relationships to her career trajectory. While in the midst of her quarter-life crisis, she learns that a “friend” (read: acquaintance) from college has gone missing and takes it upon herself to start searching for her. While Dory's friends dismiss her stories of spotting the missing girl at first, eventually they all find themselves wrapped up in the darker-than-expected shenanigans. John Reynolds (Stranger Things), Meredith Hagner (Hits, Ingrid Goes West) and John Early (Late Night, The Disaster Artist) also star in this dark comedy that I haven’t been able to stop watching. The fifth and final season just wrapped up, meaning you can now binge this roller coaster of a series from start to finish (if you dare).

Watch it on HBO Max.

TBS / courtesy Everett Collection

62.*Selena + Chef (2020–)

Selena Gomez can sing, dance, sometimes perform wizardry, has her own fantastic cosmetics line, and…still can’t cook? Now in its third season, Selena + Chef features a wide variety of chefs who attempt to virtually teach the “Lose You to Love Me” singer how to cook elaborate, occasionally themed meals while she attempts not to slice her finger open (again) from the (relative) safety of her own kitchen. The series started out during the early days of the pandemic, causing every episode to have this intimate, high-budget YouTube series-like style that makes it uniquely compelling in today’s over-seasoned cooking show market. I’ll never complain about seeing more of the former Wizards of Waverly Place star. So, in case you haven't gotten into Only Murders in the Building yet, or are looking for a side serving of Selena to go along with the wacky murder mystery series, get excited about Season 4 of Selena + Chef. Watch it on HBO Max.

Selena Gomez can sing, dance, sometimes perform wizardry, has her own fantastic cosmetics line, and…still can’t cook? Now in its third season, Selena + Chef features a wide variety of chefs who attempt to virtually teach the “Lose You to Love Me” singer how to cook elaborate, occasionally themed meals while she attempts not to slice her finger open (again) from the (relative) safety of her own kitchen. The series started out during the early days of the pandemic, causing every episode to have this intimate, high-budget YouTube series-like style that makes it uniquely compelling in today’s over-seasoned cooking show market. I’ll never complain about seeing more of the former Wizards of Waverly Place star. So, in case you haven't gotten into Only Murders in the Building yet, or are looking for a side serving of Selena to go along with the wacky murder mystery series, get excited about Season 4 of Selena + Chef.

Watch it on HBO Max.


63.The Sex Lives of College Girls (2021–)

A still from "The Sex Lives of College Girls"

Mindy Kaling is bringing some of her Never Have I Ever and The Mindy Project magic over to HBO Max with the help of Brooklyn Nine-Nine writer Justin Noble. Four college first-years (one of whom is played by none other than Pauline Chalamet, aka Timothée’s sister) share a living space and plenty of growing pains in this sometimes sexy, often uncomfortable, and consistently hilarious new series that focuses on — you guessed it — their sex lives. As if you need any more encouragement to check this show out, Gavin Leatherwood from Netflix’s Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is in it, in case you’ve been missing his oft demon-plagued self since the Spellmans got canned.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Jessica Brooks/HBO Max

64.Sex and the City (1998–2004)

Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda all out to dinner

If you'd prefer to catch up with the SATC gals back in the days of the (seemingly) solid foursome, you can always take a stroll down memory lane. Because despite what Carrie tells Big during one of their major Season 6 fights, she does seem to still live in that iconic apartment. The chokehold that closet had (still has) on me… Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte and, yes, Samantha, are just a quick search on HBO Max away. Frozen in time where their rock-solid, fashion-forward friendship will last forever.

Watch it on HBO Max.


65.Six Feet Under (2001–05)

Nate and David at a graveyard in "Six Feet Under."

Six Feet Under first premiered over 20 years ago, but it still remains unrivaled in its insightful portrayal of grief, loss, and the interconnectedness of life and death. Sounds like a total hoot, right? But truly, this quirky show can deliver large laughs and even bigger emotions in each and every episode. When their father (Richard Jenkins) dies, Nate (Peter Krause, Parenthood) and David Fisher (Michael C. Hall, Dexter) have to step up and run his business, Fisher & Sons Funeral Home. Every episode of this family drama starts off with a death, but don’t let that deter you. Six Feet Under’s exploration of life is definitely worth the grief.

Watch it on HBO Max.


66.Somebody Somewhere (2022–)

Bridget Everett in Somebody Somewhere

This seven-part HBO series finds its protagonist in the wake of major loss: Sam returns to her hometown of Manhattan, Kansas, to take care of her sister, Holly, while she is sick. Now, six months after Holly’s death, she’s still living in her sister’s totally untouched house, just sort of floating. What follows is a midlife coming-of-age story that sees Sam slowly but surely creep out of her shell with the help of her coworker and former high school classmate, Joel. Bridget Everett (Inside Amy Schumer) steps brilliantly into the role of Sam as a Manhattan (the Kansas one) native herself, and makes her small town feel almost like the one you moved away from all those years ago. This comedy series is warm, heavy, and familiar in the best sense of the word.

Watch it on HBO Max.


67.The Sopranos (1999–2007)

Tony Soprano walking in a bathrobe in "The Sopranos"

TV’s best kept secret, maybe you haven’t heard of this super-underrated show before… OK, we get it, everyone knows about the show that’s widely hailed as one of the greatest TV series of all time. Do I even need to summarize the plot of The Sopranos? James Gandolfini is Tony Soprano, a husband, a father, and a notorious mob boss. But he’s also in therapy, so he’s working on himself, and that’s what’s really important here. And what’s important to Tony, above all else, is his family, spearheaded in part by his wife, Carmela (Edie Falco, Nurse Jackie). If, for some reason, The Sopranos hasn’t made it into your rotation yet, with The Many Saints of Newark just released, now is as good a time as any to start watching.

Watch it on HBO Max.


68.The Staircase (2022)

Toni Collette and Colin Firth in The Staircase

Michael Peterson had a loving marriage with his wife, Kathleen, and a pleasant family life with their blended family of five children…but all true-crime lovers know, that’s never the whole story. The Staircase tells the tragically true story of Kathleen Peterson’s death and all the chaos that ensued in the aftermath. When Michael finds Kathleen unconscious at the base of their staircase, he assumes a horrible accident has occurred, but authorities aren’t convinced. What follows is not your typical true-crime miniseries, but something much more stylized, sophisticated, and far less focused on the actual outcome of the case. It focuses more on family dynamics under stress than it does courtroom drama — but don’t worry, there’s still a healthy dose of lawyer-antics to seethe over. Colin Firth and Toni Collette star as the ultimately cursed couple, alongside Patrick Schwarzenegger and Sophie Turner, to name just a few from this surprising cast. The downside? Two Mr. Darcys may be ruined for you after watching this one.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Courtesy of HBO Max

69.Starstruck (2021–)

Jessie and Tom sitting drinking tea together in "Starstruck"

I think I’ve read this fanfiction before… Jessie (Rose Matafeo) is just an average millennial living in London and juggling two jobs she doesn’t care for, until she has what’s intended to be a one-night stand with Tom (Nikesh Patel, Four Weddings and a Funeral), who turns out to be a very famous movie star. What unfolds is very much a Y/N insert-style fanfiction plot, only our Y/N is Jessie, who defies this trope by existing as a well-rounded character who doesn’t give too much weight to Tom’s stardom and gets on with her life despite her somewhat casual celebrity crush. If you’ve ever watched the Disney Channel original movie of the same name and longed for a more realistic plot, better characters, and cool accents, then Starstruck is the series for you.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Mark Johnson/HBO Max

70.Station Eleven (2021–)

Mackenzie Davis riding horseback in a caravan in Station Eleven

If the past few weeks dealing with the latest COVID-19 variant haven't given you flashbacks to March 2020, you could always try Station Eleven. The new miniseries is based on the 2014 novel by the same name and tells the story of a pandemic and what it does to civilization across multiple timelines. Mackenzie Davis (Black Mirror) stars as Kirsten, who, 20 years after watching the fall of society as the avian flu has ravaged the world, performs in a traveling Shakespeare troupe who aim to spread art and culture throughout a Great Lakes region populated by small groups of remaining survivors. In this "new normal" the characters of Station Eleven are living in, there are danger and violence, but also love, hope, and joy. Above all else, this post-apocalyptic show, created partly during our own pandemic, is about joy.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Ian Watson/HBO Max

71.Steven Universe (2013–20)

A still from Steven Universe of Steven and his Crystal Gem friends

"Oh, Steven! There's one more thing I have to mention!" Whether you were a cartoon kid or not, this series (clearly very recently discovered by TikTok) is a total gem. Cartoon Network’s first animated show created solely by a woman tells the story of Steven Universe, a young kid who lives with these adorable magical aliens called the Crystal Gems. Steven himself is half Crystal Gem, half human, and struggles with sorting out his identity and coming into his powers throughout the show. The group goes around protecting humanity from monsters and dealing with surprisingly complex emotions for its cartoon medium. After the show ran its course, there was also a TV movie and a limited-series epilogue, so there's plenty of Steven Universe content to get into.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Cartoon Network / Courtesy Everett Collection

72.Succession (2018–)

The Roy family in Succession

Taking home the Emmy for Best Drama Series in 2020, this intensely dramatic, darkly comedic show is often referred to as a “must-watch” on HBO Max, a label that the depths of the internet seem shockingly in agreement on. The series follows the Roy family, who own and operate Waystar RoyCo, a global media and entertainment conglomerate. When Logan Roy (Brian Cox) announces his plans to step down from the helm of the family business, bloodthirsty, morally questionable chaos ensues among his offspring. Beyond the killer theme music (which makes for a great TikTok sound) and the appearance of Sky High’s Nicholas Braun as Cousin Greg, this series operates in that compelling gray area where none of its characters are people we should root for, and yet, despite your better judgment, you might soon find yourself firmly on team Logan or team Kendall (Jeremy Strong).

Watch it on HBO Max.

Macall Polay/HBO

73.*Sweet Life: Los Angeles (2021—)

Jerrold Smith II, P'Jae Compton, Keilan in sweet life: los angeles

Everything Issa Rae touches turns to gold, so it comes as no surprise that the Emmy and Golden Globe nominee’s first attempt at reality TV was a smash hit. Sweet Life: Los Angeles explores what it means to be young, Black, and ambitious in Los Angeles, California these days. The series follows a tight-knit but inevitably drama-riddled friend group, all grinding in their own respective fields (which tend to conveniently overlap quite a bit). Sweet Life: Los Angeles Season 2 continues to tell the complicated coming-of-age story of its subjects through eye-catching cuts and an undeniably sick soundtrack. If you’re searching for a new reality show to binge, Sweet Life is a sweet option.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Courtesy of HBO Max

74.That Damn Michael Che (2021–)

Michael Che

If Weekend Update is (rightfully so) your favorite part of Saturday Night Live, this one’s for you. Brilliant comedian and generally chill guy, Michael Che, stars in this sketch comedy series that explores themes and situations from Che’s perspective. Through sketches that frequently put his day job to shame, Che addresses what it's like to be unemployed, experience racial profiling, fall in love, and more. The first season’s cast was unsurprisingly jam-packed with Che’s very funny friends, including fellow SNL stars, Cecily Strong, Heidi Gardner, and Colin Jost, along with a slate of once again SNL-rivaling guest stars. Season 2 drops at the end of this month, but you can (and should) stream the first six episodes of That Damn Michael Che right now.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Courtesy of HBO Max

75.The Time Traveler's Wife (2022)

Theo James in The Time Traveler's Wife

Is there a more perfect role for Theo James than to finally deliver justice for Audrey Niffenegger’s utterly fantastic and overwhelmingly romantic novel? I think not! And yeah, this is me slandering the 2009 movie adaptation (sorry Ms. McAdams). The series adaptation of The Time Traveler's Wife tells the epic love story of Claire (Rose Leslie, Game of Thrones) and Henry (James), a couple with a uniquely challenging problem: Henry uncontrollably travels through time. Claire has known Henry since she was about six years old. Sometimes he’s old, sometimes he’s young, but he nearly always tells her tales of the future; her future, with him. The two are destiny incarnate, but Henry’s frequent absence means their relationship can be…strained, at times. Despite feeling much like Claire each and every time Henry habitually disappears on Christmas after seeing the first book-to-screen adaptation, I have higher hopes for the HBO Max version than I do for my own future.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Macall B. Polay/HBO

76.Togetherness (2015—2016)

Mark Duplass and Melanie Lynskey screaming at each other in the shower in Togetherness

I’ve been a fan of basically everything Jay and Mark Duplass have ever done, so it’s no surprise that Togetherness is right up my alley. But its subtle approach to turning small stories into big explorations of the human condition makes it, in my only a little humble opinion, the right show for everyone. Four middle aged adults battle your average marital rut ennui and the sheer panic of still being single past a “certain age” respectively. The Mark half of the Duplass brothers stars alongside Yellowjackets scene-stealer (and recent Emmy nominee) Melanie Lynskey, series co-creator Steve Zissis and where-do-I-know-her-from’s (the answer is vaguely everywhere) Amanda Peet. Togetherness is a canceled-too-soon two-season-hit wonder that’s definitely worth the less than satisfying season-turned-series finale.

Watch it on HBO Max.


77.The Tourist (2022)

Jamie Dornan in the tourist

In a conversation with a colleague recently regarding our ranking of every Robert Pattinson performance, they suggested Jamie Dornan would have perhaps made a better Edward Cullen than the now-Batman actor. While I don’t entirely agree based on the flop that is Fifty Shades of Grey, I will now reveal this very brave and controversial take: Jamie Dornan could’ve done Twilight but I’m not sure Robert Pattinson could do The Tourist. This thrilling series follows Dornan as — you guessed it — a tourist traveling through the Australian Outback (this is made clear to us, of course, by the “Australia” T-shirt he’s casually wearing). As Dornan’s mysterious man is enjoying his solo road trip, he begins to be tailgated by a giant truck that appears out for blood, or at least burnt rubber. Dornan wakes up bruised and battered in a hospital bed with basically no memories. Now, with the help of a few either extremely kind or sinisterly motivated locals, and the occasional clue from seemingly left by his past self, Dornan’s tourist must figure out who he was and what he’s done. If your only impression of Dornan is from the absolutely cursed Fifty Shades trilogy, please take an afternoon or two to enjoy his six-episode redemption arc via The Tourist.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Ian Routledge/Two Brothers Pictures

78.True Detective (2014–19)

Mahershala Ali in True Detective season 3

Each season of True Detective is its own true crime drama neatly (or not-so-neatly) wrapped up in eight episodes. The first season follows Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson into the crosshairs of a seemingly supernatural serial killer wreaking havoc on Louisiana. Season 2 sees Vince Vaughn, Colin Farrell, and Rachel McAdams working together in an attempt to take down a politician suspected of murder. The third season, after a several-year hiatus, stars Mahershala Ali, searching for two missing children in the now-familiarly eerie setting of the Ozarks. You don’t need to watch the seasons in order — or even in their entirety — to enjoy the hair-raising mystery and drama of True Detective.

Watch it on HBO Max.


79.Tuca & Bertie (2019–)

Tuca and Bertie in Tuca and Bertie

Tiffany Haddish and Ali Wong are bird besties in what is undeniably one of the best cartoons Adult Swim has ever saved. Tuca (Haddish), the confident (and proudly uncool) toucan, and Bertie (Wong), the seriously anxious songbird, are lifelong friends and neighbors who Netflix tried and thankfully failed to cancel. Despite being animated in 2D, Tuca and Bertie share a relationship so raw and complex it feels entirely real — occasionally too real. Tuca & Bertie has quite a bit in common with BoJack Horseman (including production designer and producer Lisa Hanawalt), but where BoJack’s protagonists were at times very difficult to love, Tuca & Bertie’s are incredibly easy to fall for (and they won’t let you down). If you like your cartoons a bit experimental and filled with guest stars, then it’s time to let Tuca & Bertie into your heart. Season 2 arrives June 24, and according to Hanawalt’s Twitter, we can expect Season 3 to arrive sometime this summer.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Adult Swim

80.Veep (2012–19)

Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Veep

If the characters on Parks and Recreation had been allowed to swear and made it to higher office a tad sooner, you’d get Veep. This political satire series follows former senator Selina Meyer (Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Seinfeld), who, after becoming vice president of the United States, finds that her dream job is actually more of a waking nightmare. Tony Hale, Anna Chlumsky, Matt Walsh (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Ted) and Reid Scott (The Big C, Curb Your Enthusiasm) round out the cast of this chaotic comedy that boasts a similar vibe as The Office, Arrested Development, and Silicon Valley. Veep ran for seven great seasons, so if you need a new show to watch now that Parks and Recreation is being held hostage by Peacock, give it a try.

Watch it on HBO Max.


81.Watchmen (2019)

Regina King in Watchmen

Tired of Marvel movies and looking to get your superhero fix elsewhere? HBO’s adaptation of the 1986 DC comics series Watchmen drops in on some familiar faces 34 years later, beginning a new chapter of Watchmen’s story. In Tulsa, Oklahoma, a white supremacist group begins a violent war on minorities and the police that protect them. After the group enacts a mass killing spree on the Tulsa police force, all the city's cops are either dead or quit the force, with only two remaining: detective Angela Abar (Regina King) and police chief Judd Crawford. As the plot unfolds, we get flashes of the original Watchmen plot refreshed and reframed for this 2019 limited series, making it an enthralling journey for old and new fans alike.

Watch it on HBO Max.


82.Westworld (2016–)

Westworld: It's like Disneyland, only for the super rich... OK, so it's exactly like Disneyland, but the guests in attendance get to live

Westworld: It's like Disneyland, only for the super rich... OK, so it's exactly like Disneyland, but the guests in attendance get to live "without limits," and no, I don't just mean they get the fancy fast passes and unlimited popcorn refills. This dystopian sci-fi show follows the “hosts” of Westworld, an Old West-themed amusement park wherein advanced androids populate and run the park, living out the same plot each day while enduring abuse and harassment from the high-paying guests and getting their memories wiped every evening. What a life. When a system update causes hosts Dolores Abernathy (Evan Rachel Wood, The West Wing) and Maeve Millay (Thandiwe Newton, Crash) to become aware of the nightmare loop they’re trapped in, chaos ensues. Who doesn’t love a cowboy and robot mashup? Three seasons in and Westworld has so far managed to keep that Wild West spark alive despite moving away from the theme park and into the real world to deal with sentient robot ethics and such. The incoming season promises 1930s mafia-core, the return of James Marsden, and a brand-new character for the Oscar-winning Ariana DeBose — sign me up. Season 4 of Westworld premieres June 26.

Watch it on HBO Max.

John P. Johnson/HBO

83.What Happened, Brittany Murphy? (2021)

A childhood photo of Brittany Murphy

Explosive and insightful, this two-part docuseries reframes the life story of Brittany Murphy. The Clueless actor was known as one of Hollywood’s sweethearts before falling victim to the beloved-to-berated pipeline as paparazzi and tabloid culture began to taint Murphy’s reputation. This series retraces the origins of her success and subsequent career spiral and delves into the mysterious circumstances surrounding the actor's seemingly sudden death. Though it's produced by Blumhouse, there’s nothing campy or over the top about this real-life Hollywood horror story.

Watch it on HBO Max.


84.The White Lotus (2021–)

Connie Britton in White Lotus

Looking to feel extremely unsettled on your next vacation or feel really good about the fact that you don’t have travel plans anytime soon? Try The White Lotus. The show that dominated the summer TV discourse might no longer be the talk of Twitter, but it’s most definitely worth the watch. This satirical comedy-drama stars Sydney Sweeney, Jennifer Coolidge, and Connie Britton among other heavy-hitting actors as vacationers who arrive in Maui for a rejuvenating reset. As these individuals' week of relaxation unfolds, the intimate dramas of their lives are revealed and tensions rise in contrast to the characters' idyllic setting. Boy, I sure am grateful to not be on my way to "paradise" right now…

Watch it on HBO Max.

Mario Perez/HBO

85.Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty (2022)

John C. Reilly standing on a basketball court in winning time

Do I know a single thing about basketball (or any sport for that matter)? No! Am I completely and utterly enthralled by Winning Time? Of course. It’s a true testament to the quality of a show about a team I don’t have any particular affinity for, playing a sport I don’t really care about, if I still take time away from rewatching this past season of Euphoria (like a mad woman trying to piece together all the plot holes) to watch. Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty chronicles the lives of the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980s. As a period piece, the series so far has done everything right, with great sets, an authentic-looking wardrobe, and the completely stacked cast all rocking '80s hair. The series was filmed utilizing “vintage” tech and a shooting process beyond my comprehension (I’m not making TV, y’all, I just love to watch it), which really brings you into the time and place in a way some of my other favorite period pieces have never achieved. With a cast that includes John C. Reilly, Jason Clarke, Adrien Brody, Quincy Isaiah, Sally Field, Jason Segel, and the criminally underrated, Gaby Hoffmann, Winning Time, like the team it's inspired by, might be too big to fail. Was that convincing? I mean, seriously, someone lend me some Lakers knowledge to work with here, please.

Watch it on HBO Max.

Warrick Page/HBO

86.The Wire (2002–08)

A still from "The Wire"

David Simon, literal crime reporter for the Baltimore Sun, created The Wire to explore writing partner Ed Burns’ experiences as a former homicide detective and public school teacher. The Wire is a study in crime and dysfunction, and it’s one of the original blueprints for an actually good cop drama. The show starts off by exploring the Baltimore drug scene from the perspectives of both the dealers and the cops trying to put them away, and every season that follows takes on a different squeaky wheel inside the city’s system. If you’re a fan of bleaker dramas focused on law enforcement (emphasis on bleak — I’m not talking about Brooklyn Nine-Nine here), you may want to give this early crime series a shot.

Watch it on HBO Max.

HBO / Alamy Stock Photo

* Denotes title (or season) has been newly added to HBO Max for August.

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