Every single week, our TV and film experts will list the most important ten streaming selections for you to pop into your queues. We’re not strictly operating upon reviews or accrued streaming clicks (although yes, we’ve scoured the streaming site charts) but, instead, upon those selections that are really worth noticing amid the churning sea of content. There’s a lot out there, after all, and your time is valuable.
10: TIE. You (Netflix series)
Stalker Joe is taking a bit of a reprieve on the streaming charts this week while fans await the second half of the season, which shall arrive in about a week. Until then, catch up on his total lack of coping skills when someone stalks him despite his new persona, Professor Jonathan Moore. This season isn’t as steamy for Joe, but other characters do get it on in some raunchy ways, and it’s quite intriguing (although admittedly troublesome) that the Internet is still holding a candle for Penn Badgley’s leading character.
10: TIE. The Consultant (Amazon Prime series)
I don’t know man. If I walked into work, and Christoph Waltz was there to evaluate me, I’d promptly hide under a desk. The most frightening actor in history portrays (as the title suggests) a corporate consultant who likes to smell people. Fortunately, this is also a darkly comedic thriller series, so if you dig Severance, you’ll probably also enjoy watching this selection, too.
9. Daisy Jones & The Six (Amazon series)
Elvis Presley’s granddaughter, Riley Keough, portrays the lead singer of a Fleetwood Mac-esque band, but here’s a decent aside: Keough admits to totally lying about her vocal abilities even though she nabbed the role. The series co-stars Sam Claflin, who’s a world away from his The Hunger Games days here, and if you wanted to whirl away on tour with a rock ‘n’ roll band from your living room, this weekend would be your chance to begin.
8. The Walking Dead (AMC series on AMC+ and Netflix)
Much like Walkers, this franchise keeps staggering through the mud while we await more spinoffs. Fortunately, we’re finally seeing more about Rick Grimes’ spinoff and hearing about the more revolting Walkers than we’ve ever seen before now. In other words, between anticipation for the three main-series spinoffs and the final season of Fear The Walking Dead, it’s no wonder that people are still binging this show.
7. The Whale (A24 film streaming on VOD and Amazon)
This is not the easiest watch in the world, but it’s worth the journey of watching Brendan Fraser truly ascend to Oscar-worthy territory after he’s been clawing his way back to Hollywood A-lister status for quite some time and including his Doom Patrol turn. In addition to that HBO Max show (recently RIP) and this Darren Aronofsky picture, we’ll soon see him in a little joint called Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon. The Brenaissance has been a long time coming, but what matters is that it’s here.
6. Outer Banks (Netflix series)
This season re-teams the audience with characters who simply cannot chill out and enjoy Poguelandia, so of course, one can expect more danger and intrigue and the search for treasure. This is an incredibly silly show at this point, but at least the show seems self-aware enough to embrace that fact. Soap operatics will abound, and people eat this stuff up.
5. Poker Face (Peacock series)
Let’s just say that things get really intense in this week’s episode for Natasha Lyonne’s latest hard-walking-and-talking protagonist, Charlie. She and Rian Johnson have really come together to bring us a magnificent return to mystery-of-the-week format on TV, and we are lucky to reap the benefits of their collective creativity. Also, my gosh, the steady supply of guest stars here — including Joseph Gordon Levitt, Adrian Brody, Benjamin Bratt, Lil Rel Howery, Chloe Sevigny, and Dascha Polanco — cannot be beat. Between Natasha’s connections and Rian’s knack for interweaving cameos, this show has been a pleasure.
4. Bel-Air (Peacock series)
Will’s spirit remains strong and intact, if a little less effervescent, in this darker take on the original 1990s sitcom. Dramatic territory worked out in a rare display of franchise reinvention, and but this season, it’s growing more apparent that Will must consider the feelings of others in addition to working towards his own development. This season, Jabari Banks returns as Will with Adrian Holmes as Uncle Phil and Cassandra Freeman as Aunt Viv. Also, rapper Saweetie is on tap for a cameo, and Olly Sholotan returns as Carlton, who will not be doing the dance popularized by Alfonso Ribeiro’s version.
3. Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal (Netflix limited series)
This series has been, not coincidentally, timed to release alongside the real-life trial of formerly prominent attorney and disgraced heir Alex Murdaugh. That trial recently ended, and a verdict came swiftly regarding the deaths of Alex’s son and wife, and this series aims to take a hard look at the evidence, along with damage control from the defendant, who may have been financially motivated, at the very least. The series also takes a grim look at the legal system and those who know how to (again, allegedly) manipulate it from within their own sordid stories.
2. The Mandalorian (Disney+ series)
Finally, the little guy who will never let us down: Grogu, a.k.a., “Baby Yoda.” Although he’s using the Force to snatch candy, his real new adventures have already begun with Pedro Pascal having a true moment on TV these days. One character’s ongoing absence has already been explained, and easter eggs are arriving like mad, but if you are wondering whether or not to watch the Boba Fett series before returning to this show, that’s probably a good idea. Also wonderful: Jon Favreau believes that The Mandalorian can keep flowing for several seasons to come.
1. The Last Of Us (HBO series streaming on HBO Max)
Last week’s harrowing episode built (in an emotional sense) upon the one that came before, and only two episodes remain in this season that has made a miraculous leap from video game to true prestige series. Somehow, Pedro Pascal stars in the two biggest shows on TV right now, which is quite a turn from several years ago, when people felt bad that he got killed off Game of Thrones so quickly. Things change! And they stay the same because he remains as charismatic, and Craig Mazin has gone from being known best as one of the The Hangover filmmakers to a mainstay for delivering epic HBO shows. Also, yes, he did kind-of save us from a terrible pilot for GoT, too.