The Definitive Guide to the Best HBO TV Series of 2016 and Beyond
Are you tired of scrolling through endless TV options, desperately seeking something that will captivate you from start to finish? Look no further because we have compiled a list of the best HBO TV series from 2016 that will leave you on the edge of your seat and begging for more. From groundbreaking dramas to hilarious comedies, HBO has consistently delivered top-notch content that has redefined the television landscape. Buckle up, because we're about to take you on a journey through the most gripping and unforgettable stories that will keep you hooked for hours on end.
The Sopranos (1999-2007)
The Sopranos premiered in 1999 and became a trailblazer for dark, character-driven dramas on HBO and other networks. The show follows Tony Soprano, a mob boss from New Jersey, as he navigates the complexities of his criminal empire and seeks therapy for his panic attacks. In addition to its well-crafted characters and intricate plotlines, The Sopranos offers mind-bending dream sequences, humorous moments, and outstanding performances from a talented ensemble cast. All six seasons of the show are essential viewing.
Sex and the City (1998-2004)
Sex and the City is not just about the lives of its four main protagonists. It also serves as a love letter to New York City, capturing the essence of the late '90s and early 2000s. The series, based on Candace Bushnell's column and subsequent book, explores love, friendship, and the challenges of living in a big city. With its iconic fashion, memorable lines, and relatable stories, Sex and the City has left a lasting legacy.
Lena Dunham's Girls offers an insightful and entertaining look into the lives of a group of young women living in Brooklyn. The show's protagonist, Hannah Horvath, may be self-aware and unaware at the same time, but she embodies the struggles and complexities of being a young adult in the 2010s. Girls is known for its unabashedness and memorable moments, including Marnie's cover of Kanye West's "Stronger."
Julia Louis-Dreyfus delivers a career-defining performance as Selina Meyer in Veep. The show follows Vice President Selina and her bumbling staff as they navigate the world of American politics. Veep combines humor with biting commentary on the flaws of the political system. The all-star cast, including Anna Chlumsky, Tony Hale, and Timothy Simons, elevates the comedy to new heights.
The Wire (2002-2008)
The Wire stands apart from other TV dramas by examining the corrupt systems at play in Baltimore's war on drugs. The show presents a range of iconic characters, including Omar Little, Stringer Bell, and Jimmy McNulty, and exposes the failures of both individuals and institutions. Each season delves into different aspects of Baltimore's policing, politics, and education, offering a comprehensive and thought-provoking exploration of the city's interconnected problems.
Angels in America (2003)
Mike Nichols and Tony Kushner joined forces to create a miniseries adaptation of Kushner's Pulitzer Prize-winning play, Angels in America. The sprawling and fantastical work tackles a wide range of subjects, from the AIDS crisis to faith, politics, and love. The series features an impressive cast, including Meryl Streep, Al Pacino, and Emma Thompson, who deliver powerful performances. Angels in America is a worthy adaptation of one of America's great stories.
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown (2013-2018)
Parts Unknown is not just a travel show. In each episode, Anthony Bourdain brings viewers to various destinations, providing cultural context and delving into the complexities of different societies. Bourdain's deep hatred of hipsters and his unflinching look at different cultures make the show both entertaining and thought-provoking. From cooking meals in difficult conditions to exploring the history and politics of a place, Parts Unknown offers a unique perspective on the world.
HBO's Looking is a seminal gay series that presents authentic stories about queer characters without relying on their sexuality as a plot device. The show follows the lives of a group of gay friends living in San Francisco, with Jonathan Groff leading the cast. Looking provides a realistic portrayal of the LGBTQ+ community and addresses issues that many queer individuals face in their daily lives.
Steven Universe (2013-2019)
Steven Universe is an animated series that combines adventure and heartwarming themes. The show follows Steven, a young boy on a quest for answers about his mother and his own purpose in life. Alongside the Crystal Gems, a group of super-powered celestial beings, Steven learns important lessons about love, family, and personal growth. Steven Universe's wide appeal makes it enjoyable for viewers of all ages.
Succession, described as a "sitcom disguised as a drama," explores the dynamics of a powerful media family. The show revolves around Logan Roy, the chairman of Waystar RoyCo, and his children, who all want to succeed him as CEO. With familial betrayals, acquisitions, and intricate plotlines, Succession offers awe-inspiring performances from the entire cast. The series has captivated audiences, especially with its recent tragic conclusion.
Harley Quinn (2019-present)
Harley Quinn is the first DC Comics show entirely dedicated to the iconic character. It reimagines Harley Quinn as a complex and independent individual separate from the Joker. The irreverent comedy, voiced by Kaley Cuoco, delves into Harley's personal growth and showcases Gotham's lesser-known characters. With its adult humor and character development, Harley Quinn stands out as a unique addition to the animated series landscape.
The Other Two (2019-present)
The Other Two is a satirical comedy that follows the lives of the older siblings of a rising pop star named Chase Dreams. The show brilliantly satirizes the absurdities of superstardom and offers hilarious moments. With a cast including Drew Tarver, Heléne Yorke, Molly Shannon, and Ken Marino, The Other Two is a comedic triumph that deserves more recognition.
Los Espookys (2019-2022)
Los Espookys introduces viewers to a group of friends who stage spooky events inspired by B horror films. The idiosyncratic series, starring Bernardo Velasco and co-created by Fred Armisen, offers a unique blend of humor and fantastical elements. Los Espookys showcases the talents of its cast and delivers unconventional storytelling.
Issa Rae's Insecure follows the story of the character Issa as she navigates love, work, and personal growth in Los Angeles. The critically acclaimed series offers a realistic portrayal of the Black experience and explores themes of friendship and self-discovery. With its top-notch music supervision and relatable characters, Insecure has left a lasting impact.
The Flight Attendant (2020-present)
Kaley Cuoco stars as Cassandra Bowden, a flight attendant who finds herself in a complicated situation after waking up next to a dead man. The Flight Attendant is a story of self-discovery and reflection as Cassie confronts her excessive drinking and tries to unravel the mystery surrounding the man's death. With a mix of drama and dark humor, the series keeps viewers engaged.
How To With John Wilson (2020-present)
How To With John Wilson presents seemingly straightforward how-to videos that quickly spiral into unexpected journeys. John Wilson's exploration of various questions and encounters with real people offer a fascinating and gut-wrenching viewing experience. The series combines entertainment with philosophical musings, making it truly one-of-a-kind.
Industry captivates viewers with its intense portrayal of recent graduates navigating the cutthroat world of investment banking in London. The drama explores themes of ambition, competition, and the consequences of one's actions. With a compelling ensemble cast, Industry keeps viewers hooked with its gripping storylines.
Search Party (2016-2022)
Search Party takes audiences on a thrilling and unexpected ride. The series begins with Dory, played by Alia Shawkat, becoming obsessed with finding a missing woman, which leads to a series of twists and turns. As the show progresses through its five seasons, it evolves into something entirely different, offering a story that is both gripping and thought-provoking.
Starstruck follows the story of Jessie, an awkward New Zealand millennial living in London. After a chance encounter with a handsome man named Tom, Jessie discovers that he is a famous movie star. Their attempts at dating are hindered by terrible communication skills, leading to comedic and relatable situations. With dry humor and a fun cast of characters, Starstruck provides light-hearted entertainment.
The Last of Us (2023-present)
HBO's The Last of Us expands upon the gripping story of the video game. The series follows Joel and Ellie's journey through a post-apocalyptic world as they navigate the challenges of survival and their complex relationship. With Pedro Pascal and Bella Ramsey leading the cast, The Last of Us delivers powerful performances and stays true to the game's beloved narrative.
Bill Hader's Barry blurs the lines between comedy and drama as it tells the story of an ex-marine and hitman attempting to reform himself through an acting class. The series explores themes of identity, personal growth, and the consequences of one's actions. With a talented ensemble cast, including Henry Winkler and Sarah Goldberg, Barry offers a unique and philosophical viewing experience.
As the years go by, HBO continues to propel itself as the powerhouse of captivating television series. From the groundbreaking brilliance of "The Sopranos" to the irreverent and empowering "Sex and the City," and the thought-provoking masterpiece "The Wire," the network has consistently delivered some of the greatest shows of our time. And it doesn't stop there. With recent hits like "Succession," "The Flight Attendant," and "Search Party," HBO proves that it is still at the forefront of cutting-edge storytelling. As we eagerly await the arrival of highly anticipated series like "The Last of Us" and "Barry," it is clear that HBO's commitment to delivering the best TV experiences is unwavering. So grab your popcorn and prepare for another unforgettable binge-watching journey with HBO, because their lineup of stellar shows shows no signs of slowing down.
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