Each week our staff of film and TV experts surveys the entertainment landscape to select the ten best new/newish shows available for you to stream at home. We put a lot of thought into our selections, and our debates on what to include and what not to include can sometimes get a little heated and feelings may get hurt, but so be it, this is an important service for you, our readers. With that said, here are our selections for this week.
10. (tie) Harley Quinn (HBO Max)
The good news here is that Harley Quinn is back, finally, after a multi-year break due to, well, everything. The delightfully profane animated series remains one of our finest television programs, between Harley and Ivy being a couple now and chaos descending upon Gotham and this show’s version of Bane continuing to be a hopeless goofball. It really is a blast, a beam of sunshine in a world filled with bleak dramas. You deserve to have fun. Watch it on HBO Max.
10. (tie) She-Hulk: Attorney at Law (Disney Plus)
Alison Brie didn’t get to portray this “Allison Brie type” role, but hey, we’re getting Orphan Black‘s Tatiana Maslany, who has so much fun relishing this role. She’s smart and silly and she Hulks out like a pro while also being the MCU’s very green attorney for superheroes. Expect a lot of cameos, and Mark Ruffalo is on hand as Bruce Banner. There’s no word on whether we’ll eventually see the Hulk Butt like we received in Thor: Ragnarok. Admit it, that’s on your wishlist, too. Watch it on Disney Plus.
10. (tie) Welcome to Wrexham (FX/Hulu)
Welcome to Wrexham is like Ted Lasso, if Ted Lasso was about Deadpool and Mac from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia buying a soccer team. Other than that, it’s identical. The documentary series follows Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney as they purchase and help run the Wrexham A.F.C. football club. Welcome to Wrexham looks sweet and sincere, which is a nice change of pace from getting mad at [your favorite sports team here] blowing it AGAIN. Watch it on FX/Hulu.
9. Reboot (Hulu)
A comedy all-star team of Judy Greer, Keegan Michael Key, Johnny Knoxville, Rachel Bloom, and Paul Reiser come together to gently mock the reboot gold rush and the entertainment industry, providing a Larry Sanders-y kind of inside baseball show that benefits from the presence of Modern Family co-creator Steven Levitan and Party Down mastermind John Enbom. Did we mention Judy Greer? The legend that is Judy Greer grows as she totally steals these early episodes as an actress turned duchess turned actress trying to stave off Hollywood irrelevancy, which is something that could never happen to the real Judy Greer because she is an American treasure. But acting! Watch it on Hulu.
8. The Patient (FX/Hulu)
Steve Carell is back on television once again, this time not so much to make you laugh as to… well, creep you out. He plays a therapist who is held captive by a serial killer who desperately wants help curing his murderous urges. It does not exactly sound like light/fun viewing but it does sound intriguing. And it’s from the creator of The Americans. And he has a pretty righteous beard going on. While we cannot in good faith support kidnapping Steve Carell and holding him hostage in real life, this all could be worth checking out. Watch it on Hulu.
7. Cobra Kai (Netflix)
The last time we visited with these warring dojos, evil had somehow triumphed over good. The franchise’s ultimate villain is now presiding over his own Cobra Kai schools, and everyone else is licking their wounds. This means that Daniel LaRusso and Johnny Lawrence must learn to get along for real, and Chozen is along for the ride to help the Miyagi Do and Eagle Fang tag-team approach. It sounds like a mess, yes, and it is, but this show’s still got the “Eye of the Tiger.” Once again, this franchise does the thing by appealing to several generations while lighting the soul of the valley on fire. Watch it on Netflix.
6. Atlanta (FX/Hulu)
Atlanta is back — and back in Atlanta — for one last ride after a season-long jaunt to Europe. It’s kind of remarkable that this show has even existed. In a good way. It’s strange and silly, thoughtful and artistic, and not really like anything else out there. Donald Glover was a star before any of this got underway, but it’s made the rest of the main cast stars, too. That’s kind of cool. Get in there and appreciate this show while we still have it. You could be waiting a long time for anything even remotely similar. Watch it on FX/Hulu.
5. Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (Amazon Prime)
Jeff Bezos is finally getting his version of Game of Thrones, and this even more enormously expensive franchise looks to be worth the price tag to bring J.R.R. Tolkien’s fabled Second Age to the screen. A young Galadriel will be one of the bigger highlights of this series’ exploration of relative peace that’s shattered when evil reemerges. Expect stunning visuals that leap from the Misty Mountains to an island setting to majestic forests. Between this and House of the Dragon, we’re sure getting our fill of epic fantasy shows these days. Watch it on Amazon Prime.
4. Andor (Disney Plus)
George Lucas has frequently insisted that, like Wu-Tang Clan, Star Wars is for the children. But Andor sure looks like it’s geared more towards adults. The Rogue One prequel starring Diego Luna, reprising his role as Cassian Andor, is gritty, mature, and other words you use to describe movies and TV shows that aren’t messing around. And with this being the first Disney-era Star Wars show to be filmed in real-life locations, Andor isn’t messing around. Watch it on Disney Plus.
3. Abbott Elementary (Hulu)
The first season of Abbott Elementary was a feel-good network sitcom that caught a massive wave of popularity and won a bunch of Emmys in a time when feel-good network sitcoms are kind of not supposed to do that. Credit for this goes to creator and star Quinta Brunson, who realized that an underfunded inner-city public school was exactly the right place to show us people with good hearts working inside a system that can be cold. Kind of like Parks and Recreation but in Philadelphia. The second season is underway and does not appear to be missing a beat. This is basically a miracle, all around. Watch it on Hulu.
2. Reservation Dogs (FX/Hulu)
The first season of Reservation Dogs was a revelation. Just a group of foul-mouthed Native American teens living on a reservation in Oklahoma and getting into trouble and being little rascals. It was also, sometimes, sweet and, also sometimes, heavy, and sometimes there was a mystical figure who would show up and giggle a lot and kind of just screw with everyone for five minutes. It’s a hard show to describe. But it’s a heck of a ride. Watch it on Hulu.
1. House of the Dragon (HBO Max)
Game Of Thrones seems like the easiest greenlight in the world. How could a sister project miss even with the mixed reception to the original’s finale? But House Of The Dragon is the second attempt (with one pilot failing to generate a series order) and it starts with one particular question hanging over its head: was it the world or the characters that inhabited it that made the original so widely adored? We’re about to find out as a new creative team tries to walk a line between old and new, creating fresh stories with a ring of familiarity. On their side: dragons, face-smashing combat, and Matt Smith’s good kinda bad energy. Watch it on HBO Max.