The channel that has maintained a premium status since its conception, HBO is now a major streaming platform for all to enjoy. Much like all the others, HBO Max has many original shows and movies worth talking about but also features some of the best classic movies and shows to ever be released. The reason it has maintained its premium status is that it features some of the best original shows to be released in the past five years, not to mention the fact that it releases specific movies on the same day as their theater release but we’re not here to talk about that.
From comedy to drama, sci-fi to pseudo-documentary, HBO Max has it all. Other than enjoying some spectacularly produced and acted miniseries’, these shows will also teach you something if you let them. Let your mind unwind and hope it’s a weekend because some of these shows will make you want to keep hitting that ‘Next Episode’ button till the sun comes up.
A side-splitting comedy to add to your collection is Curb Your Enthusiasm, a Larry David masterpiece that is outwardly ridiculous while also appealing to life’s simple, somewhat relatable annoyances. Wonderfully satirizing and exaggerating his own life, Larry David attempts to weave through small inconveniences but continues to get hung up on the details, causing an episode-length set of problems for him and his friends.
Creator: Larry David
Main Cast: Larry David, Cheryl Hines, Jeff Garlin
Total Episodes: 110
IMDb Rating: 8.7
A new and interesting mystery/thriller/drama from HBO is The White Lotus, a show that will make you want to scream if you’ve ever worked in the service industry before. The White Lotus is an expensive destination resort in Hawaii where only the richest people go, and where, if money is never an issue, multitudes of other issues are either created out of boredom or presented due to sheer arrogance.
Creator: Mike White
Main Cast: Murray Bartlett, Connie Britton, Jennifer Coolidge
Total Episodes: 7
IMDb Rating: 7.7
An excellent genre mix — but predominantly comedy — of incredible proportions, Barry is a story of a depressed hitman who discovers his passion for acting after being sent to Hollywood to find his ‘mark.’ Featuring Bill Hader as the hitman and Henry Winkler as the acting coach, hilarious parallels are drawn between the world of acting and the darker side of life.
Creators: Alec Berg, Bill Hader
Main Cast: Bill Hader, Stephen Root, Sarah Goldberg
Total Episodes: 18
IMDb Rating: 8.3
A thrilling and simultaneously hilarious sci-fi dramedy to watch is Made For Love, the story of a woman trapped in a corrosive marriage to a tech billionaire who has implanted her with a chip that is supposed to enhance their love life. Though he does all he can — monitors her visually, audibly, and emotionally through this implant — she scrapes and claws her way out by any means necessary, with some surprising moments of comedy that are pure and welcome.
Creators: Dean Bakopoulos, Christina Lee, Alissa Nutting
Main Cast: Christin Milioti, Billy Magnussen, Ray Romano
Total Episodes: 9
IMDb Rating: 6.9
Carried masterfully by the debut performance of Michaela Cole (who is also the show’s creator), I May Destroy You takes a deep and abstract dive into the trauma of sexual assault and how it can change the very fabric of one’s being. Though the premise is dark and may be a trigger for some, it brings some smart and dark comedy along with it while showing what it can mean to be forced to reassess your entire life.
Creator: Michaela Coel
Main Cast: Michaela Coel, Weruche Opia, Paapa Essiedu
Total Episodes: 12
IMDb Rating: 8.1
One of the most hard-hitting sources for what’s actually going on in the world today, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver is highly informative and thorough as well as somewhat stress- and existentialism-inducing. Given a chance to show his potential as a standalone voice from his experience writing and co-hosting on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, John Oliver took flight with his own form of impactful journalism that always carries a much-needed comedic bashing of the sheer ridiculousness of our situation.
Main Cast: John Oliver, David Kaye, Ryan Barger
Total Episodes: 30
IMDb Rating: 8.9
Set in an alternate history and based on the graphic novel of the same name, Watchmen is a show that balances racism, crime, and only slightly exaggerated social issues that are displayed in an action/mystery format. While it doesn’t follow the exact plot or storyline of any pre-existing Watchmen novel, the story is canon in that the events taking place in those novels happened many years prior to this new story.
Creator: Damon Lindelhof
Main Cast: Regina King, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Tom Mison
Total Episodes: 9
IMDb Rating: 8.2
Truly a one-of-a-kind show on our list today is The Larry Sanders Show, a show about the behind-the-scenes happenings of a late-night talk show. Due to its endlessly witty and crisp writing, the show is an absolutely hilarious perspective that is portrayed by Garry Shandling, Jeffrey Tambor, Rip Torn, and many other surprise guests that may be familiar — if you are familiar with the 90s sitcom era.
Creator: Dennis Klein, Garry Shandling
Main Cast: Garry Shandling, Jeffrey Tambor, Wallace Langham
Total Episodes: 89
IMDb Rating: 8.4
When a young and inexperienced comedy writer happens upon the once-incredible Las Vegas comedian Deborah Vance (Jean Smart), a twisted and dysfunctional mentorship begins to form and fester. This show is as cleverly written as it is dark, detailing the highs and lows of the industry and all the push and pull it takes to make it in any category.
Creators: Lucia Aniello, Paul W. Downs, Jen Statsky
Main Cast: Jean Smart, Hannah Einbinder, Carl Clemons-Hopkins
Total Episodes: 11
IMDb Rating: 8.3
A brave and gritty drama to behold is Chernobyl, a show that tells the story of the brave men and women who fought to extinguish the disastrous 1986 nuclear accident, as well as the irresponsible and arrogant men who made it happen. Besides having some fantastic characters backed by some incredible performances, this is a very important story to know for anyone to understand what really happened as it has been described as “hauntingly accurate” by Business Insider’s Aria Bendix.
Creator: Craig Mazin
Main Cast: Jessie Buckley, Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård
Total Episodes: 5
IMDb Rating: 9.4
A show that has been known to bring many current movie stars to the limelight, Band of Brothers is like an incredible — and accurate — war movie that just keeps going. Following the American 101st Airborne Division through their missions in WWII, ‘Easy Company’ goes through hardships and loss as we are told by actual survivors from the division.
Main Cast: Scott Grimes, Damian Lewis, Ron Livingston
Total Episodes: 10
IMDb Rating: 9.4
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