Weekend Binge Guide: May 2018

Have the weekend free? Going out is overrated! Binge-­watch one of these shows instead:


If you want to laugh:



See all reviews for Episodes

Maybe it's because I wasn't the biggest Joey fan (don't @ me), but I'm not kidding when I tell you that Episodes is Matt LeBlanc's finest role/show to date. The series, which ran for 5 seasons on Showtime (although each season contained only 7-9 episodes) stars LeBlanc as a sort of a**hole version of himself - we hope - in a post-Friends universe, and he's great. If you don't believe me, he actually *was* nominated for an Emmy for the role 4 times, although I'd still argue that the show mostly flew under the radar. The show started off mocking the United States' tendency to knock off British TV series, which is why we were introduced to the characters of British writers Beverly and Sean Lincoln (played by Tamsin Greig and Stephen Mangan, respectively), who were appalled to learn that a difficult LeBlanc would be starring in a US version of their show. As the show progressed, the characters became involved with various other shows - including a great gag with LeBlanc hosting a truly terrible reality series - but always made astute observations (and inside jokes) about the TV industry.


If you want to cry:


American Crime

See all reviews for American Crime

Be forewarned that American Crime - not to be mistaken with American Crime Story - is a show that is often horribly depressing and difficult to watch. As a result, many people did not watch it when it aired originally, although they definitely missed out. The series is an incredibly powerful and beautifully acted series, starring A-rate actors including Felicity Huffman, Regina King - who won 2 Emmys for her work - and Timothy Hutton. The show was an anthology, created by John Ridley (who won an Oscar for his work on 12 Years a Slave), with each season focusing on different stories about race, class, and gender in America. Unlike normal crime series, this show was not focused on the cops, but on everyone else connected and impacted by a crime. Though the series has concluded, it will remain thought-provoking and relevant for years to come.


If you want to scream:



See all reviews for Dexter

Dexter is certainly an example of a show that overstayed its welcome (and had a pretty universally despised series finale, which isn't a great way go out), and this may have tarnished its lasting legacy for some. That being said, the show's first few seasons were some of the best TV out there - then and now. It also clearly was ahead of its time on the serial killer trend - these days there are too many serial killer series to count - as the show debuted all the way back in 2006. Perhaps don't watch the entire series, but certainly check out the first 4 seasons of this Showtime drama about a blood-splatter analyst for the Miami Police department (played to perfection by Michael C. Hall) who moonlighted as a pretty likable serial killer. Why was he likable? He was targeting other murderers who had managed to escape justice. The show also excelled at crafting season-long arcs with different mega-villains each season.


If you want to think:



See all reviews for Westworld

I would hope that most of you are already watching Westworld, but in the event you are not, this seemed like a fitting month to include it in our binge guide, as it has recently returned (after a hiatus of over a year) for a highly anticipated second season, and has already been renewed for a third. Westworld is the name of a futuristic theme park, where robotic hosts are essentially enslaved, forced to fulfill the twisted desires of the park's rich visitors, only to have their memories wiped and then suffer again. Problem is, as the robots usually do, they begin to gain their own consciousness and revolt against the terrible humans, and boy is it fun to root for those robots! HBO is betting big on Westworld as the network's successor to Game of Thrones - the budget is clearly massive from the sets to the stars - and it shows. Thankfully, the big budget isn't wasted, as the show is also hugely compelling. Once you begin, you'll likely have to keep watching until you are up-to-date and eagerly awaiting the next week's new episode.




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May 2, 2018 9:27PM EDT

My take: (some currently airing, some not... like above)

If you want to laugh: Those Who Can't
If you want to cry: 800 Words (not exactly a tear-jerker, but has an emotional aspect to almost every episode)
If you want to scream: Killing Eve, or Kiss Me First (more like silent screams)
If you want to think: Legion, or The Magicians

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May 3, 2018 9:59PM EDT

If you want to laugh: Last Man on Earth
If you want to think: The OA
If you want to catch up on what everyone else watches: Westworld & Game of Thrones

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May 5, 2018 8:19AM EDT

WW is meh
Dexter is actively terrible
The rest? don't know but seem mediocre.

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May 6, 2018 8:57PM EDT

I'm currently bingeing on Veep season 5, but I can't wait to get to season 6. It's got to be as good or better.

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May 7, 2018 6:26AM EDT

fyi the link to american crime is broken (missing a '-' between american and crime)

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May 7, 2018 11:56AM EDT

@mdl352 Thanks for pointing this out - we have corrected!

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