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The 20 best shows to stream on Paramount Plus Australia
Paramount Plus promises a mountain of entertainment. Here's a sneak peek.
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10 All Access officially became Paramount Plus on Wednesday 11 August. That means more content for existing subscribers, as well as an extra incentive for new users to give the fresh platform a go. The service will host original series, exclusive shows, movies and live football matches – all for $8.99/month with a 7-day free trial.
On the TV front, Paramount Plus offers everything you've already seen on 10 All Access and 173 new series. In other words, you can still binge-watch your way through NCIS, Blue Bloods or every episode of The Big Bang Theory. Additionally, you can stream original series and new titles courtesy of Showtime, MTV, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Smithsonian Channel and Network 10.
There is so much here, including a vast amount of reality TV, crime shows by the bucketload - no less than 4 versions of CSI - plus animations, children's content, 80s sitcoms and old-school favourites. Yep, it has the original MacGyver in all its mullet-laden goodness. But here we have focused on 20 titles you either need to check out or re-watch.
Cast: Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, David Zayas
Fans of this brilliant series about a forensic analyst that hides a very dark side will be excited to know that a new series, Dexter: New Blood, is in the pipeline. For those who are yet to check out the original, now is the time. Over 8 seasons, Dexter managed to shock and delight while also proving a record-breaker at the time for viewing numbers.
2. Ray Donovan
Cast: Liev Schreiber, Eddie Marsan, Dash Mihok
You are certain to have someone in your life who has seen every episode of Ray Donovan. Now ask that person if you should tune in for the first time, we know the answer. Amongst a long line of crime drama series, Ray Donovan manages to stand out as the titular character tries to juggle family life with a career intrinsically linked to organised crime. Cancelled without warning in February 2020 after 7 seasons, a feature length film is in production for a 2022 release.
3. Two Weeks to Live
Cast: Maisie Williams, Sian Clifford, Mawaan Rizwan, Taheen Modak
In Two Weeks to Live, Maisie Williams stars as Kim, a misfit who was raised in isolation. When she becomes convinced that everyone will die in a couple of weeks, Kim sets off on a revenge mission meant to honour her late father. A dark comedy, this 6-part series has a killer sense of humour and enough thrills to keep you glued to the screen.
Cast: Ernie Hudson, J.K. Simmons, Lee Tergesen
Well before prison dramas like Wentworth or Orange is the new black were born, there was Oz, a groundbreaking, revolutionary show that depicted the horrors of prison life. Set in the fictional Oswald State Correctional Facility, or Oz for short, this confronting drama that often had the look of a documentary ran for 6 seasons and had an all-star cast including Ernie Hudson, Christopher Meloni, J.K. Simmons and Harold Perrineau.
5. Why Women Kill
Cast: Allison Tolman, Lana Parrilla, Lucy Liu, Ginnifer Goodwin
A dark anthology series, Why Women Kill is… all about women and why they kill. The first season follows 3 women in different time periods who are experiencing issues in their marriages. Season 2, meanwhile, revolves around a housewife in 1949 who is desperate to join an exclusive garden club. The show is impeccably cast and very stylish. You'll be addicted in no time.
6. The Bite
Cast: Audra McDonald, Taylor Schilling, Steven Pasquale
Content inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic has been mixed so far, but The Bite is wacky enough to work. Created by Robert and Michelle King, the same team behind The Good Wife, this miniseries follows 2 neighbours who have to deal with day-to-day problems while also facing a new strain of a deadly virus that turns people into zombies. It's a mix of satire, horror, comedy and drama – and we're here for it.
Cast: Jonny Lee Miller, Lucy Liu, Aidan Quinn
A modern take on the classic Sherlock Holmes tale has Miller in the lead role and Liu playing his trusted sidekick Dr Watson. Filmed in New York, the show ran for 7 seasons with a hefty 24 episodes for the first 5 seasons, 21 for the penultimate season and 13 for its conclusion in 2019. With a strong balance of storytelling and humour coupled with a fast pace, Elementary quickly became a favourite with viewers and critics alike.
Cast: Miranda Cosgrove, Jerry Trainor, Nathan Kress, Laci Mosley, Jaidyn Triplett
She's back! Based on Nickelodeon's original hit sitcom, the new iCarly picks up nearly 10 years later. It still follows Carly Shay, the original influencer, as she navigates love and work in her twenties alongside her friends. For those who grew up with iCarly, the reboot will feel like reuniting with an old friend. For everyone else, it's a solid and relaxing comedy.
Cast: Katja Herbers, Mike Colter, Michael Emerson, Aasif Mandvi
10 All Access users should already be familiar with Evil, a top-notch supernatural drama about a skeptical psychologist who teams up with a priest in training to investigate the church's backlog of unexplained mysteries – demonic possessions, miracles, the likes. Clever and well-written, the show makes for an unsettling binge. Migrating to Paramount Plus, it returns with season 2, with episodes arriving weekly on the platform.
10. Chappelle's Show
Cast: Dave Chappelle, Donnell Rawlings, Rudy Rush
Running for just 2 seasons and 24 episodes in total, standup comedian Dave Chappelle's skit show made a mammoth impression when it launched in 2003. Tackling issues of race in particular, along with celebrity and drug use, among others, it became an institution. If you have seen any of Chappelle's standup specials, you need to go back to see where it really began.
11. Anne Boleyn
Cast: Jodie Turner-Smith, Mark Stanley, Paapa Essiedu, Barry Ward
A re-telling of Anne Boleyn's downfall and execution, this 3-part series aims to tell the infamous Queen's side of the story. It explores Boleyn's final months as she struggles to secure a future for her daughter. Anchored by an excellent performance from Jodie Turner-Smith, this progressive period drama will surely appeal to genre fans.
12. Everyone Is Doing Great
Cast: Stephen Colletti, James Lafferty, Alexandra Park, Cariba Heine
A delightful comedy, Everyone Is Doing Great follows a couple of guys who were on a hit television vampire drama. But, 5 years after their show has ended, they still refuse to grow up. Instead, they lean on each other to navigate life's many ups and downs. It's hilarious and awkwardly relatable at times. Plus, it's created by One Tree Hill alums Stephen Colletti and James Lafferty, who used crowd-funding to get the show made. If you've missed them, there's no time like the present to catch up.
13. The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
Cast: Stephen Colbert, Jon Batiste, Stay Human
It can't get much more difficult than having to step into the enormous shoes vacated by David Letterman on his long-running, late night staple, The Late Show. The fact Stephen Colbert managed to do that and put his own stamp on it is testament to the ability of Colbert and a top-notch writing staff. While his ongoing Donald Trump impression brought him new fans and followers, it is his easygoing yet brilliant style of humour that keeps people coming back for more.
14. In the Dark
Cast: Perry Mattfeld, Brooke Markham, Rich Sommer, Casey Deidrick
In the Dark centres on a blind woman, Murphy, who likes to drift through life in a drunken haze. She stumbles upon a corpse while on a walk with her guide dog, but the body disappears before the police show up and they are reluctant to investigate. Believing that the body was that of a friend, Murphy sets out to find out what really happened. If you like shows with amateur sleuths, you can't miss this one.
Cast: Aidan Turner, Matilda De Angelis, James D'Arcy, Alessandro Sperduti
To call Leonardo da Vinci a fascinating figure would be an understatement – and seeing him portrayed by Poldark fave Aidan Turner is a real treat. A historical drama, Leonardo invites viewers to unlock the enigma of this extraordinary man, recounting his life, work and personal struggles. We highly recommend you RSVP yes to Leonardo.
16. Five Bedrooms
Cast: Kat Stewart, Stephen Peacocke, Doris Younane, Katie Robertson, Roy Joseph
After a long wait, the second season of this hit Aussie dramedy is coming to Paramount Plus, giving fans plenty of reason to celebrate. The show revolves around 5 people who decide to buy a house together. What could possibly go wrong? According to the official synopsis, season 2 features a DIY renovation injury, 2 pregnancies, an unexpected tragedy and more. Colour us intrigued.
17. South Park
Cast: Trey Parker, Matt Stone, Isaac Hayes
Every episode from this classic animation - that is now up to its 23rd season - can be found on Paramount Plus. While you may want to go back to season 1 to see how it all started, we can warn you it's mainly toilet humour and horrible animation. But over the years the show evolved to become an incredibly witty and insightful view at huge issues in society - OK sure, still retaining a lot of the toilet humour.
Cast: Jeff Probst, Lillian Morris, Jon Dalton
The reality show that laid the groundwork for everything that has entered the genre since. That probably means plenty of people can't stomach Survivor, but it retains an enormous, loyal fanbase in the US, Australia and around the world. While people recall the acts of physical strength and ability to eat sometimes horrendous food, the social game-playing is really what Survivor is all about.
19. My Life Is Murder
Cast: Lucy Lawless, Bernard Curry, Ebony Vagulans, Todd River
A whodunnit crime show with a lighter, sometimes silly edge, My life is murder had its first season run back in 2019, with its second season debuting in mid-2021. Lawless plays Alexa Crowe, a former detective lured from retirement to help on a particularly tough case. Focusing more on some comedy than blood-splattered bedrooms, we hope this show continues for some time yet.
Cast: Ted Danson, Rhea Perlman, George Wendt, Shelley Long
In another example of a show that really set the tone, Cheers led the way for the likes of Roseanne, Home Improvement, Seinfeld and direct spinoff Frasier that would all come in the wake of its massively successful 11-season run. Danson is superb as the washed up baseball player running a bar and the support cast is memorable across the board. Throw in a truly memorable theme song and you have one of the greatest sitcoms of all-time.
See our list of best movies on Paramount Plus Australia. Not sure how to sign up? See our guide to help get you started with Paramount Plus.
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