18 TV Shows You Can Watch on HBO Max From Start to Finish This Weekend
These are the best quick marathons that the streaming service has to offer.
The weekend has arrived, so you have some important questions to consider: What to eat? How late to sleep in? And most importantly, what to watch? If you're an HBO Max subscriber, we've got you covered. Knowing that longer shows are a big commitment, we've searched the service's offerings to find the 18 best shows on HBO Max you can watch in just one weekend. And no matter your mood, there's something here, from tense, crime dramas to edgy comedies. So read on for our picks, and for quick marathons streaming elsewhere, here are 17 TV Shows You Can Watch From Start to Finish This Weekend.
Based on the Matt Ruff novel of the same name, Lovecraft Country was definitely one of the most talked-about shows of 2020. The horror-fantasy-historical imagines monsters created by sci-fi writer H.P. Lovecraft terrorizing the Jim Crow South. Starring Jonathan Majors, Jurnee Smollett, Michael K. Williams, and others, Lovecraft Country's return is TBD, but the first season packs in tons of dark magic, nightmare-inducing creatures, and other, more human terrors.
For more recommendations, check out 17 Shows You Can Watch on Hulu From Start to Finish This Weekend.
This stunning miniseries about the unprecedented nuclear disaster earned a whopping 19 Emmy nominations for its depiction of the errors leading up to the event as well as the aftermath and attempted cover-up. It's certainly not as lighthearted as many of the rest of the shows on this list, but its five devastating episodes are also riveting.
The Righteous Gemstones
From the guy who also brought you Vice Principals and Eastbound and Down comes The Righteous Gemstones, a comedy about a family of Christian televangelists trying to expand their flock and outrun some blackmailers. Creator Danny McBride also stars, along with John Goodman, Walton Goggins, Edi Patterson, and Adam DeVine. It's been renewed for a second season (that doesn't have a premiere date yet), and you can binge all nine episodes of the first season right now. Want more watch lists sent right to your inbox? Sign up for our daily newsletter.
The Other Two
Watching a younger sibling achieve an ungodly amount of fame while you're still not sure what you're even doing with your life? It would be a sobering judgment on you and a pretty incredible opportunity. The Other Two goes all in on this premise, following two young adults (Drew Tarver and Heléne Yorke) who become hangers-on when their teen brother (Case Walker) is dubbed the new Justin Bieber.
His Dark Materials
This series adaptation of Philip Pullman's beloved fantasy novel series just wrapped its second season and has been renewed for a third and final. That gives you time to catch up on the story of Lyra (Dafne Keen), a young woman born to powerful and dangerous parents in a world in which all humans have animal daemons and a shadowy organization performs dangerous experiments on children.
The Comeback is Lisa Kudrow's post-Friends tour-de-force, a comedy about a former sitcom star trying to carve out a place for herself in the industry years after her first brush with fame. Though HBO canceled the show after its first season, it finally got a second nine years later, bringing Valerie Cherish's story to a surprisingly moving end. And for more praiseworthy series enders, check out The Most Hated TV Finales of All Time.
The Night Of
Riz Ahmed won an Emmy for his starring role in this limited crime series about a student accused of murder. As Naz navigates the criminal justice system (and its bias against non-white people), the audience is left to wonder what really happened the night of the killing—and whether or not Naz was wrongfully accused.
Hugh Grant and Nicole Kidman star as a wealthy New York couple who are not as blissfully happy as they seem in this six-episode thriller. When a mom at their son's fancy private school turns up murdered, Grant's character Jonathan seems—at first, at least—to be the prime suspect. For more recommendations, check out 13 Netflix Shows You Can Watch From Start to Finish This Weekend.
Gavin and Stacey
Before James Corden became a late-night talk show host in the U.S., he co-created this comedy about an English man (Matthew Horne) and a Welsh woman (Joanna Page) who strike up a long-distance relationship. Spanning years of their lives, the show covers all the funniest and most stressful elements of falling and staying in love with someone, including dealing with their family.
I May Destroy You
Michaela Coel's I May Destroy You will do exactly that. The creator also stars on the series—which appeared on pretty much every "Best of 2020" list that there was—as Arabella, a British writer who struggles to move on after a devastating sexual assault. For more buzzy shows from last year, check out The Best TV Show of 2020, According to Critics.
Season 3 is on the way, so it's high time for you to see what all the Succession fuss is about. The darkly hilarious drama follows a family made wealthy by their media empire and who are brought to a crossroads when their patriarch (Brian Cox) must decide to which of his adult children he should pass his torch.
This episodic horror anthology is a lot like Netflix's Black Mirror. Each terrifying episode of HBO Asia's Folklore focuses on a different frightening myth or folktale from an Asian country, so this is one to watch when you're in the mood for something unsettling. And if that's your bag, check out The Best Horror Films of All Time, According to Critics.
Years and Years
And here's a show that's a different brand of unsettling. Years and Years is part interpersonal drama, part apocalyptic thriller, as we watch the near future descend into chaos through the eyes of one British family. The show feels eerily prescient as it anticipates how bitter political divides lead to violence, uncertainty, and a chilling "new normal." Happy watching!
Lost and The Leftovers showrunner Damon Lindelof reimagines the classic graphic novel with this racially conscious take on Watchmen. Despite the nine-episode series racking up awards and acclaim (including Emmys for stars Regina King and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), Lindelof has sworn that he's told the exact amount of story that he wants to tell and that there won't be any more. Good news for you, since you can watch a whole masterpiece in just a day, if you feel like it.
Before Game of Thrones, HBO had another expensive drama with stunning international locations, a sky-high body count, and plenty of otherwise "adult" content. Rome ran for two seasons from 2005 to 2007, and while the aforementioned bloodshed of the historical series may make it a tough weekend binge, it's certainly accomplishable.
Laura Dern leads this cult classic dramedy as Amy Jellicoe, a woman whose personal and professional life simultaneously fell apart, leading to her being institutionalized. Across its two acclaimed seasons, Enlightened follows Amy as she attempts to get back the normalcy that she lost.
If you're missing Benedict Cumberbatch's modern Sherlock Holmes, try Miss Sherlock, a Japanese series in which both the detective and her associate, Dr. Watson, are women. No sign of a second season yet, but you can still enjoy all the intrigue and deductions of its eight-episode debut.
Fans of Pushing Daisies have been mourning the show since it went off the air after two seasons in 2009. The visually sumptuous fantasy-romance stars Lee Pace as Ned, a man who can bring dead things back to life just by touching them, and Anna Friel as Chuck, his childhood love. Since Ned brought Chuck back to life, he can never touch her again, seeing as the other part of his power is that he can kill anything for good that way. It does make him a pretty great solver of murders, however, since he can use his touch to question the deceased.