Aah, TV shows. We often choose an episode of a show over watching a full 2-hour movie - but it isn’t uncommon that the shows tempt us into binging the entire series in one go. We’ve all been there, which is why we suggest you stay away from these shows on HBO Max during the working week because they are so binge-able!
We’re not kidding, and this list mentions some of the best shows to watch on HBO max. Try whatever you may, we assure you that the effort to stop at one episode will be in vain. So, when you plan your weekend this week, make sure you slot out a part of the day for indulging in the best TV shows on HBO max from this list.
Industry is a show of fierce competition – one where graduates are prepared to do whatever it takes to get into Pierpoint, one of the leading investment banks in London. Revolving around a central group consisting of Harper Stern, Hari Dhar, Yasmin Kara-Hanani, Robert Spearing and Augustus “Gus” Sackey, each coming from vastly different backgrounds, the shows pits each person against each other in an energetic environment where the winner literally takes it all. With a fast-paced script and a cast that delivers superb acting, we can only see this show age like a fine wine.
House of the Dragon
Built on the backbone of the iconic show Game of Thrones, House of the Dragon takes us back in time – 200 years behind in fact, to show the rise of house Targaryen. Built on a fictional world that is much richer than what we saw in Game of Thrones, this show promises a future that promises much entertainment going forward. Truth be told, it’s one of the shows we’ve been waiting to air since we heard the rumors. The cast playing the roles of the central characters of house Targaryen deliver superb performances, leaving nothing to be desired.
The Vampire Diaries
Based on the novels from L.J. Smith by the same name, The Vampire Diaries is a long-standing favorite TV show for generations past and for generations to come. Damon and Stefan Salvatore are two brothers who have been alive for centuries and move from place to place to keep their true identity intact. Their latest haunt for refuge- the town where they both lost their human lives. Even though this would be considered a predictable genre, this show is filled with twists that manage to exceed our expectations in every episode. Filled with solid storytelling that remains addictive even after you turn off the show, we would recommend this as a must-watch for any audience.
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What would you do when you wake up in a strange land with no idea about who you are or were? Jamie Dornan takes us through this scenario as he acts out the central role in The Tourist, where he must fit the puzzle of his life before it becomes too late. He must make friends on the way as he treads down self-discovery and faces the twists and shocks that derail everything he thought he would be like. What’s interesting is to note that the man himself knows less about himself than we do, which is a refreshingly new take on the thriller genre.
Based on a true story that was also featured as a documentary, The Staircase takes us through the life of Michael Peterson, a local politician who was framed for the murder of his wife Kathleen. As the family bear witness to the investigations, things are not quite as accidental as they seemed. We thought the documentary was fantastic until this docuseries came out and blew it right out of the water. Throwing a bright light on society’s fascinations with horrible tragedies, and Colin Firth and Toni Collette deliver performances that can keep you on the edge.
Making the move to America from the Dominican Republic to live in the “American Dream”, the Gordita Chronicles finds the Castelli family find that it is not as rosy as it may seem from outside the country. The eccentric family of four find it hard to fit in, but they also manage to find a nice warm spot in our hearts with their charming obviousness. A significant part of the appeal of the show is the two child actors playing Cucu and Emilia, as they struggle to learn what it takes to make friends and thrive in a land that is far removed from what they’ve experienced.
Westworld is, in a way, a look into the future of amusement parks. The park allows rich vacationers to live out any fantasy with robotic “hosts” to help indulge in their every desire, without fear of consequences. In a land such as this, what can happen when the hosts find true consciousness, and begin to question the constructs of the world they were programmed to fit into? Based on the 1973 cult classic film, Westworld is a marvel to behold, and even more so if it truly existed. With a complex storyline such as this, the rewards of keeping up can only be felt after each season, but it is definitely worth it.
The Time Traveler's Wife
Mix in elements of deep romance and complicate it with the concept of time travel, and you get a show to enjoy in The Time Traveler’s Wife. Based on the best-selling novel, the show carries an appeal that can keep you hitting the play button for the next episode. We think the show far outdoes the movie based on the same novel. We think it’s a show that will last as an important piece in time (get it?), because of the feelings it can evoke. Rose Leslie and Theo James perform their roles admirably, and we couldn’t have asked for more.
Barry is both funny and unsettling, but it is a TV experience you should not miss. Barry is a hitman who is fed up with his job and is looking for a way out. By coincidence, he is sent to LA for another hit but finds himself participating in acting class and actually liking it. But his criminal past and network don’t want to let go of him that easily, and the tragicomic series has us go down a rather insightful path of what it means for a man to become a better human. Don’t miss an opportunity to binge on this, we say.
Minx is a critical comedy about how women were treated as second-class citizens in the US. A young feminist who decides to rebel against this treatment teams up with a publisher of low repute to publish the first erotic magazine for women in the 70s. We want to say that the plot is fresh and hilarious, just like the magazine Minx. What’s interesting to note is that this show sells feminism but also walks the talk. Shows of this kind of caliber can be very addictive, as we experienced with this 10-episode show. If we could think of a show that would make you want to subscribe to HBO Max, it would be this one.
If the DCEU ran a poll of our favorite heroes from their arsenal, Peacemaker would show as a close favorite. With John Cena as the leading actor, the show follows the exploits of Peacemaker, a superhero who does everything he can to maintain peace, even if he ends up killing a lot of people. But if you walk into this show with expectations from the DC movies, be prepared to have them shattered. Peacemaker is funny, gore, violent, vulgar and has a lot of heart, and we think Peacemaker is the hero that the DC movies never knew it needed.
If you’re looking for a juicy drama that can last you through the weekend, you might want to consider binging on Dawson’s Creek. The show centers around the lives of 4 central characters – Dawson, a wannabe filmmaker, Joey, his best friend who also has a secret crush on him, Pacey and Jen, the girl next door. These 4 characters have to deal with each other, their feelings for each other, and the changes in their lives when new characters enter and leave. The mix of the coming-of-age genre with soap opera turns out well, and we found it to be an appealing show, especially for the younger ages.
YEAR: 2004 - 2011
Entourage is a highly acclaimed show that has always remained one of our favorites since 2004. Four buddies decide to move to Queens, New York, to discover their passion for acting. Led by Vince, who claims to be the next superstar, the show follows their lives in the fast-paced life of Tinseltown, with the blend of clever dialogue and chemistry between all the actors. It would be wrong to say that the depiction of Hollywood is all true, but the show does shine some light on how the business has changed over time.
Take a person at the top of their field and put them with someone who is looking to find their voice in the same field, and you get HACKS, a show that plays off with cast chemistry that is astounding. Deborah Vance, the legendary Las Vegas comic, decides to take Ava Daniels, a 25-year-old comedy writer, under her wing and guide her all the way to the top of the world of comedy. The show is starkly realistic, with a well-written script that manages emotional drama, a compelling relationship, fame, fortune, and comedy. The show punches well above its weight, and we think it should definitely be added to your watchlist.
Rose Matafeo shines in the role of Jessie in Starstruck, a story about a drunken New Year’s Eve hookup that gets complicated. When Jessie finds out that the person she slept with is actually a movie star, things move quickly from a funny story to talk about to serious business. Matafeo really stole the show with her scriptwriting because Starstruck is really a relatable romantic comedy with the most endearing cast. We guarantee that this gem is a pleasant way to spend your weekend because you’ll realize that the day is almost over only when you’re at the 8th episode...
It's a Sin
It’s a Sin is a classic example of how the small screen can deliver an experience that can draw parallels with the best big-screen films in the world. When they turn 18, Ritchie, Colin and Roscoe decide to leave their homes and journey onward to London in the 80s to explore their individual freedom. But when a mysterious virus emerges in the scene, the three boys must find a way to navigate through the dark days. The show will surely touch your hearts, and the personal dramas in the lives of the characters can move you to tears.
Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty
The Los Angeles Lakers are one of the sports world’s most iconic teams, and Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty is a deep dive into the way this team went on to define the golden age of professional basketball. The show is based on the book by Jeff Pearlman, who speaks about the time of Kareem, Magic, and Riley. The show, like its main characters, keeps us moving quickly and gives room for the actors to really showcase their talents. In some regards, it makes us go in awe at the heights of performance these players embodied, and for those who are looking to learn something about the world of professional basketball, this is a worthwhile watch.
Euphoria is an American adaptation of the Israeli show of the same name, which focuses on the life of Rue, a 17-year-old substance abuser who has been through a stint of rehab but plans to go down the same path once she’s out. Her gang is just as dysfunctional as she is, with their varying degrees of extremes, and the show interplays their confusions with their hopes for their futures. The show is a real look into the lives of the current teenage landscape of wild parties and the stressful lives of growing up in the face of adulting.
Peacemaker brings to us John Cena as the Peacemaker, a superhero who wants to maintain peace no matter the cost. This action-packed drama is a show that seems to be tailored around John Cena's physique and personality because you're sure to wonder if he is a vigilante in real life. Cena's charisma is a large factor in making us favor this show, the dialogues, and the jaw-dropping opening sequence are a killer combo itself. But the show's wackiness comes from a place of intelligent scriptwriting, and we're hoping there are many more seasons to come.
Our Flag Means Death
Our Flag Means Death is a hilarious trip down the memory lane of the era of the pirates, told in a manner that would make Captain Jack Sparrow proud. Stede Bonnet runs away from his aristocratic family to become a pirate due to a situation of a midlife crisis but soon comes to realize that the pirate’s free life isn’t quite for everyone who just wishes for it. When we think of pirates, a barbaric feeling definitely comes to mind, but Our Flag Means Death’s characters are quietly introspective, which makes us easily relate to them even though we’re centuries apart.
The Gilded Age
When we talk about the Gilded Age in America, we can agree that it was mostly a time of economic upheaval and the clash between the old and new ways of running the country. The Gilded Age follows the life of Marian Brooks as she moves to New York City from rural Pennsylvania to live with her aunts. But she is soon subject to the very clashes that defined the Gilded Age because her family is strictly conservative about old money, while she is fascinated with the developments of the modern age. How will she decide to move forward when her heart calls out to something but her surroundings direct her elsewhere?
Station Eleven is perfectly placed for the pandemic season, and we think this is one of the best shows yet to come on HBO Max. Based on the post-apocalyptic world that has been devasted by the flu, we are taken through the lives of multiple survivors as they try to come together and rebuild a world from the ashes. The show is rich in its direction, acting and faith and while it may seem a tad slow, the show will grip you onto your couch till the end of the ten episodes.
The Righteous Gemstones
The Righteous Gemstones is a show that follows the lives of the Gemstone family, who are the famous televangelist family that is blessed with dividends from God. The show begins with Patriarch Eli, the man who built the family, mourning the loss of his wife and his eldest son Jesse, who has to step in to handle his father’s duties while he is in mourning. But the other two siblings, Judy and Kelvin, are the exact kind of people who don’t meet the social image of the Gemstone family (not that they want to, either). The show follows the rise of this religious empire and how they continue to stave off threats while making some real good money doing it.
Logan Roy, the lead character played by Brian Cox, is the head of Waystar Rosco, the media conglomerate of epic proportions, which is also the bigger picture in Succession. But Logan is aging, and he has come to a point in life where he thinks about whether the future has more to offer. While he has no plans of stepping down from his role, he knows that he’s stayed there longer than he ever meant. But internal politics collide with the succession plan, as family members try to claim the absolute power that he holds for themselves.