Whether youâre self-isolating or practising social distancing, itâs clear weâre all going to be spending a lot more time at home.
If our internet decides to hold up, it’s the perfect time to catch up on some shows you’ve been meaning to watch, and discover some newbies that have just been released.
Deadwater Fell is a chilling BBC series starting this week, set in a small, idyllic Scottish town. A tragedy shocks this close-knit community when a fire rips through the home of a family of five, with only the father surviving. It tears the town apart as suspicion is cast around. It stars David Tennant and Cush Jumbo. Watch it: BBC First on Foxtel/Fetch
The Plot Against America is a miniseries adapted from a Philip Roth novel by the creators of The Wire, David Simon and Ed Burns. It’s set in 1940, in an alternative version of American history in which aviation hero Charles Lindbergh becomes President, steering the US towards isolationism and fascism. There are definite parallels with the Trump era and it stars Winona Ryder and Zoe Kazan. Watch it: Foxtel/Foxtel Now
Devs is the kind of show that really messes with your head. Written and directed by Alex Garland, this trippy, mind-boggling thriller is interested in ideas around artificial intelligence, simulated realities and determinism. It kicks off when a computer engineer’s partner disappears after he’s tapped to join a mysterious division at their quantum computing company. It’s beautifully filmed and just as hypnotic. Watch it: Foxtel
The Cry is an Australian-British co-production, a four-part miniseries starring Jenna Coleman and Ewen Leslie. When a young couple travels to Victoria from Scotland with their baby son, their lives are up-ended when their young son disappears. There are shades of the Madeleine McCann story and it features spectacular performances. Watch it: ABC iview
Counterpart is a two-season sci-fi thriller in which the world was secretly split into two universes some 30 years ago during the Cold War. On the other side of a door in Germany, there’s a mirror universe in which we all have doubles. Counterpart has elements of John Le Carre-type spy stories, with J.K. Simmons playing two versions of himself. There’s even an element of a pandemic. Watch it: iTunes/Google Play
The Outsider is adapted from a Stephen King novel about a small town torn apart when one of its own is arrested for the gruesome murder of a child. The problem is, while there are witnesses and forensic evidence of his crime, there is also the same that places him somewhere else entirely. It’s spooky, unsettling and a real mystery. It stars Ben Mendelsohn and Cynthia Erivo. Watch it: iTunes/Google Play/Foxtel
Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet is a workplace comedy set in a video game company. Don’t let the name fool you, it’s not a strange fantasy series. It’s actually full incredibly relatable personalities and scenarios that we face every day – narcissist bosses, bureaucracy and weirdo co-workers. Watch it: Apple TV+
Ramy is a great little series created by a Muslim-American comedian, Ramy Youssef. In the show, he plays a version of himself, a 20-something man trying to grapple with questions of faith, family and future in a resonant immigrant story. It has a strong authorial voice and fully realised characters. Watch it: Stan
The Good Place just wrapped up its four seasons, which makes it the perfect time to catch up if you haven’t already. Set in the afterlife, it follows the eternal lives of four misfits who find themselves inextricably in The Good Place, despite not being saints on Earth. Did someone make a mistake? Watch it: Netflix
Friday Night Lights: If there was ever time we needed someone like Coach Taylor in our lives, it’s now. Even hearing “Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose” will make us feel a little bit better. Set in a small town in Texas, this series centred on a high school football team is so much better than its logline suggests. It stars Kyle Chandler, Connie Britton and Jesse Plemmons. Watch it: iTunes/Google Play
The West Wing celebrated its 20th anniversary last year but it already feels like it was even older than that – maybe that’s just because the tenor of politics has changed so much since the fictional Jed Bartlet occupied the Oval Office with his random knowledge about strawberries. If The West Wing was wish fulfilment then, what does that make it now? Watch it: Stan
Mad Men: The sumptuous, beautifully crafted period drama is a nuanced, character-driven masterpiece. If you haven’t seen it before, now is the time. Over 92 episodes, it gave audiences a slice of America in the 1960s, a period of social upheaval as seen through the lives of a Manhattan ad agency and the tortured souls that walked its halls. Watch it: Netflix
The Simpsons is the longest running scripted series in US history with 30 seasons of TV, each with over 20 episodes. You do the maths. Even if you think The Simpsons hasn’t been amazing for many years, can you name another show that was still really solid by its 11th season? That’s a lot of Ay Carambas. Watch it: Disney+
Grey’s Anatomy is a great option for those fond of soap operas but appreciates a higher production value. All the goings-on in Seattle Grace Hospital will satisfy – especially those earlier seasons with McDreamy. There are 16 seasons (did you know it was still going?!), clocking in at over 350 episodes – you may not even finish it all before next year. Watch it: Stan
The Good Wife is a great legal drama with 156 episodes across seven seasons. Sex scandals, political betrayal, cutting remarks – it has it all. Plus, an incredible cast including Julianna Margulies, Josh Charles and Matthew Goode. And no one throws a scathing look quite like Christine Baranski. Watch it: Amazon Prime Video
SOMETHING WITH THE KIDS
The Mandalorian is a great family-friendly series from the Star Wars universe – but you don’t need to be fully versed in the ways of the Jedi to get what’s happening. Set between the original trilogy and the latest one, it follows the story of a bounty hunter who comes across a strange creature, also known as Baby Yoda. Watch it: Disney+
Frozen 2 is hitting Disney+ three months early as a treat for all those parents stuck at home with their stir-crazy kids. The adventures of Elsa and Anna continue when the Ice Queen hears a mysterious voice on the wind who can reveal secrets from her family’s past. Watch it: Disney+
Bluey: If you have a young kid, you don’t need us to tell you about Bluey; chances are, your kids are already obsessed. Bluey has just returned for its second season and there are even four bonus episodes on the ABC Kids app, and some new interactives. Rejoice. Watch it: ABC Kids
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