Prepare your summer 2020 binge list: All the hottest quarantine shows
There’s so much to watch, but so little time! It can be a little overwhelming deciding what to watch during quarantine, especially with how great TV has been in the past few years. So, here are some series you may have missed or which just appeared on your favorite streaming service. Each is either completed or, in the case of anthologies, has completed seasons.
The Americans (6 seasons)
The Americans is possibly one of the best series in this Golden Age of Television. And yet, almost no one talks about it. It actually picked up a few Emmys, but The Americans rarely gets the attention it deserves.
The Americans is based on the real-life Russian spies that blended into American life during the Cold War. The series follows Phillip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth Jennings (Keri Russell) who seem to be a loving couple with two children, but are actually Russian spies who spend their nights in the 1980s dressing up in (wonderful) disguises as they work on missions to learn U.S. government secrets.
The series is incredible from start to finish. Notable for its brilliant writing and amazing cast, The Americans is worth watching over a long period of time, but it’s so great that it wouldn’t be surprising if you end up finishing it in a week.
The Americans is available on Amazon Prime.
Avatar: The Last Airbender (3 seasons)
Netflix took the internet by storm when Avatar: The Last Airbender showed up on the streaming service. Rewatch this childhood gem or introduce it to your family! Not only is it a beautiful animated series, ATLA has memorable characters and takes place in a fascinating world, making it one of the best-animated series of all time.
The Last Airbender possesses such an established world it’s surprising that it’s not based on any prior graphic novel or anime. Aang is the last surviving member of his nation, who, along with his friends, attempts to stop the powerful Fire Nation from taking over the world.
With stunning artwork and touching storylines, The Last Airbender is worth revisiting, no matter what age you are.
Avatar: The Last Airbender is now available on Netflix.
Fargo (3 seasons)
Based on the Coen Brothers’ film of the same name, Fargo is an anthology series following different criminal acts in the wintry chaos of Minnesota. Every season takes place in a different decade with different characters, but each is equally exciting to watch.
Fargo is filled with fantastic ensembles and interesting mysteries that lure you in right from the pilot. While the first season is still the best, the rest of the series is still fun, especially if you’re a fan of the 1996 film.
Fargo is available on Hulu. The fourth season has been delayed due to the pandemic.
Over the Garden Wall (1 season)
Wholesome and heartrending, Over the Garden Wall is short & sweet. The animated show follows two half-brothers as they explore a fantasy world, trying to get back home. Created by Patrick McHale of Adventure Time, Over the Garden Wall is one of the most unique children’s programs in recent years.
The brothers encounter a new obstacle in each episode as they travel through the mysterious forest. There are only ten 11-minute episodes, so if you have the time you can watch Over the Garden Wall in less than two hours. You’ll be yearning for more when you get to its finale’s satisfying, beautiful conclusion.
Over the Garden Wall is available on Hulu.
The Sinner (2 seasons)
The Sinner is an incredibly addictive crime anthology series. While each season depicts a different crime, veteran performer Bill Pullman helms the series as Detective Harry Ambrose, who has a keen interest in solving complex crimes.
With cliffhangers, twists, and turns, The Sinner keeps you guessing with its intricate plotlines. The show has a great ability to introduce new characters, while also deepening the character of Ambrose as you learn more about him throughout the series. An enigma himself, Ambrose gives the show backbone, making The Sinner even better than a typical investigation series.
Seasons 1 – 2 of The Sinner are available on Netflix. Season 3 aired in February and March of this year.
The Thick of It (4 seasons)
Love British humor? Give The Thick of It a try. A precursor to shows like Veep, The Thick of It is a satire on British government helmed by pre-Doctor Who Peter Capaldi. Luckily, you don’t have to know anything about the British government to watch the show.
The Thick of It is a scathing mockumentary series, consistently hilarious and filled with absurd characters. The series was so successful it produced a spinoff feature, In the Loop, and directly influenced the creation of HBO’s Veep in the U.S. Known for its profanity & wild antics, it’s easy to binge The Thick of It all at once, especially if you need a laugh and want a break from current events.
The Thick of It is available on Hulu and Amazon Prime.
Twin Peaks (3 seasons)
From the fantastic mind of David Lynch, Twin Peaks is the poster child of postmodernism. When it originally premiered in the 90s, Twin Peaks was clearly ahead of its time.
The world might not have been ready for its dark humor, idiosyncratic characters, and surreal plot. Now, Twin Peaks’s legacy & impact on television is clearly evident, especially for the “premium” shows TV platforms like HBO & Netflix regularly premiere.
Twin Peaks may take some time to get used to, but the payoff is definitely worth the watch. While the second season isn’t as strong as the first (due to execs booting the visionary Lynch), Twin Peaks got the conclusion it deserved when it surprisingly returned three years ago for one season, which premiered on Showtime.
Seasons one and two of Twin Peaks are available on Netflix, Hulu, and CBS All Access. Twin Peaks: The Return is available on Showtime.