Summer is here. That mean’s hitting the beach, picking up the ol’ weights and…who are we kidding? We both know you’re going to spend most of your summer watching one episode after another of TV shows you heard good things about ten years ago but didn’t bother checking out until they were on Netflix.
Instead of spending almost as much time choosing what to watch instead of actually watching it, here are some awesome TV shows you probably missed out on.
It’s Walker, Texas Ranger meets No Country For Old Men in this six season adaptation of legendary writer, Elmore Leonard’s Raylan Givens stories. The show follows a US Marshall forced to return to his hometown of Harlan County, Kentucky after getting in a shootout with a gangster he gave 24 hours to leave town. A modern day Western with whip-crack dialogue and tense showdowns, the show also hosted a who’s-who of awesome guest stars including Alan Ruck (Cameron from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off) and character actress Margo Martindale in an Emmy-winning turn as the matriarch of a clan of hillbilly pot growers. In addition to Timothy Olyphant as grizzled lawman Raylan Givings, Justified also features Walter Goggins, known for the racist sheriff from Tarantino’s The Hateful 8, as a white supremacist who finds Jesus after getting shot. You can find it on Hulu and Amazon.
Why should you sink hours of your life into this Showtime comedy following two frustrated, British writers struggling to remake their hit show for the US despite the Hollywood Machine’s interference? Two words: Matt LeBlanc. Featuring the Friend’s star’s big TV comeback after the dumpster fire that was Joey, LeBlanc plays a fictional version of himself attempting to make a big TV comeback after the dumpster fire that was Joey. Of course, the real-life LeBlanc’s comeback has been a lot more successful, considering he won a Golden Globe for playing himself in 2012. LeBlanc isn’t the only Friends alum behind Episodes, the show was created by Friends writer’s David Crane and Jeffrey Klarik. Considering that and how 99% of the humour in Episodes is derived from the incompetence of American networks and the vapid deviousness of TV execs, it really makes you wonder about how friendly the set of Friends actually was.. You can watch it on OnDemand, ITunes, and Amazon Instant.
If you like sex and violence, Cinemax’s Banshee is for you. Created by True Blood’s Alan Ball, who knows a thing or two about making the most of cable TV’s lack of content restrictions, the show follows a recently-released master thief who takes on the identity of a murdered sheriff to win back his ex and find the jewels he stashed before heading to the slammer. Yes, it’s exactly as convoluted as it sounds. It’s also awesome and features villains right out of a Bond movie including a flamboyant, albino prison boss, and a vicious Amish gangster.
If you missed the hype train when this seminal sci-fi drama rolled around between 2003 and 2009, now is the time to find out why Portlandia did a whole episode about how addictive it is. Dumping the cheese factor of the original show from the seventies, Ronald D. Moore’s BSG redux took the idea of robots destroying the Earth and turned it into one of the most tense and thoughtful dramas ever made. While the last season is controversial among fans, almost no other show has done as much to create today’s Golden Age of TV. You can find it on Hulu.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Did you love The Avengers? Of course you did, everyone did, it was a great movie. Buffy the Vampire Slayer has all the humor, heart, and sick one-liners of the MCU, largely because they’re both brainchildren of geek overlord, Joss Whedon. Based on a shitty movie no one watched in the ‘80s, Whedon so loved the idea of the dumb blonde who dies in every horror movie getting the chance to do the ass-kicking for once, he structured a whole mythology around it. While the action hasn’t aged well and the first couple of seasons are amazingly ‘90s – there’s a episode where a demon takes over the internet and catfishes Buffy’s best friend – BTVS features everything that has made Joss Whedon one of the most respected nerds in the entire world. You can also check it out on Hulu.