The best TV shows you can stream on Stan
In over three years, Stan has considerably expanded its catalogue, which now includes thousands of hours of content. Here are the best series available to stream right now.
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Australia’s home-grown streaming service has a lot going for it. From a generous roster of shows fast-tracked from the US, to original content like No Activity, horror spin-off Wolf Creek, raucous comedy The Other Guy and the grim drama Romper Stomper, Stan has proven itself a force to be reckoned with.
Here are the best TV shows you can currently stream on Stan, as determined by a mix of critic reviews, audience response and the expertise and opinion of our writer.
1. Head High
A New Zealand series, Head High chronicles the rise of high school rugby stars Mana and Tai. Under the guidance of their parents, they compete in their school's team and hope to make it big one day. But tragedy, secrets and a rival high school might get in their way.
A powerful drama that's more about family than it is about sports, Head High will draw you in from episode one and keep you glued to the screen until you binge the entire first season in one go. If you enjoyed Friday Night Lights, there's a pretty good chance you'll like this one too.
This new crime drama tells the story of Clarice Starling, whom you might remember if you've seen The Silence of the Lambs. Clarice follows the FBI agent as she returns to the field about one year following the events depicted in the movie, ready to hunt down other monsters but still haunted by her encounter with the elusive Hannibal.
Clarice is a grim affair, but it's the kind of show that will definitely appeal to viewers looking for a new crime procedural to sink their teeth into. One thing's for sure: the premiere is solid enough to make you come back for more.
A charming Stan original series, Bump follows a teenager, Oly, who has big future plans… and a surprise baby. Needless to say, the unexpected newcomer causes complications for both families involved.
Bump has already been renewed for a second season – which is excellent news, since the Aussie drama is a delight. Full of heart and humour, it's a show about people just trying to do their best. It's also quite binge-worthy, so don't start watching unless you have at least a couple of hours of free time ahead.
4. It's a Sin
It's 1981, the start of a new decade. Three friends begin a new life in London and adjust with the help of their housemates, but a new virus is on the rise. Soon, their lives will change in ways they never imagined.
This highly-acclaimed series focuses on London's vibrant gay scene, showing the importance of found families and the confusion and heartbreak AIDS caused over the course of a decade. To call it must-watch TV would be an understatement.
This reboot of '90s series Walker, Texas Ranger stars Jared Padalecki of Supernatural fame as the titular Texas Ranger. After losing his wife and going undercover, he returns home to his struggling kids and gets a new partner to help him keep the peace in Austin. However, he's still haunted by images of his wife, who he suspects perished under dubious circumstances.
Walker looks like a solid series you can watch with the entire family, something that has become almost a rarity in today's era of peak TV. It's perfectly pleasant, with a likeable cast and sharp dialogue. If the action picks up, it will become even more appealing.
6. The Watch
Looking for a crime show with a twist to add to your watchlist? You can't go wrong with The Watch. The series, inspired from the Discworld fantasy novels by Terry Pratchett, follows a group of misfit cops who rise up to save their corrupt city from catastrophe.
A fun mix of action and humour, The Watch has a compelling cast and excellent production values. Whether or not you've read the novels, you'll find plenty here to catch your eye.
7. Your Honor
The premise behind Your Honor is pretty straightforward: the son of a respected judge is involved in a hit-and-run, killing the son of a drug kingpin. While his dad initially urges him to turn himself in, he eventually changes his mind and attempts to help him get away with murder.
Bryan Cranston shines as the father with nothing to lose, while the series as a whole makes for a satisfying addition to the 'how far will you go for your child?' genre. Prepare to be on the edge of your seat.
8. Saved by the Bell
A follow-up to the iconic 1990s sitcom, Saved by the Bell revolves around a group of California low-income high school students who are transferred to Pacific Palisades' wealthy Bayside High. Once there, they clash with the privileged kids, who are in for a much-needed awakening.
Hilarious and boasting a strong cast, this Saved by the Bell reboot is much better than everyone expected, blending nostalgia with timeliness in a seamless and intriguing way. Whether you tune in to see familiar faces or are more interested in what the new generation experiences, there's plenty here to love.
9. Gangs of London
When the head of a criminal organisation is assassinated, the resulting power vacuum leads to a struggle that threatens the fragile peace among the intricate web of international gangs operating on the streets of modern-day London.
That's the premise behind this gripping crime series – a must-see for anyone who appreciates exhilarating action and nuanced character drama. Add some excellent performances into the mix and you've got yourself a first-rate show you won't be able to look away from.
10. The Good Lord Bird
Based on the 2013 novel of the same name by James McBride, The Good Lord Bird stars Ethan Hawke as abolitionist John Brown.
The story is told from the point of view of Onion, a fictional enslaved boy who becomes a member of Brown's motley family of abolitionist soldiers and participates in the 1859 raid on the Army depot at Harpers Ferry. Brown's raid failed to initiate the slave revolt he intended but was the instigating event that started the American Civil War.
Despite the serious subject matter, the series is quite funny at times, making for an engaging and entertaining watch. Plus, Ethan Hawke is phenomenal.
11. Brave New World
Brave New World is an adaptation of Aldous Huxley's classic novel of the same name. In a utopia whose perfection hinges upon control of monogamy and privacy, members of the collective begin to question the rules, leading to surprising results.
Sleek and intriguing, this dystopian will surely appeal to sci-fi fans looking for an addictive and satisfying binge. It offers a fresh spin on the genre and it may even give you a lot to think about.
12. Power Book II: Ghost
A Power spinoff, this series revolves around some of the most controversial characters in the original.
On his own for the first time, Tariq St. Patrick divides his time between school and hustling to pay for a defence attorney that might help his mother get out of jail. Soon though, he finds himself turning to a familiar drug game to make ends meet.
If you were a fan of the original series, you'll be happy to know that the spinoff picks up just where the original left off. Perfect for fans craving a bigger Power universe.
13. Little Birds
Set in the '50s, Little Birds revolves around heiress Lucy Savage, who arrives in Tangier fresh off the transatlantic steamer to one of the last outposts of colonial decadence. She's set to experience a culture shock in more ways than one.
A TV adaptation of Anais Nin's infamous collection of erotic short stories, Little Birds is a show with style to spare about a woman losing and then finding herself down a mesmerising rabbit hole. Feel free to indulge.
Evil centres on skeptical psychologist Kristen Bouchard, who reluctantly works together with a priest in training in order to investigate and find logical explanations for every supernatural occurrence within the Church.
Created by the same people behind hit show The Good Wife, Evil is not your run-of-the-mill procedural. Unsettling, twisty and sometimes satirical, the series is equal parts disturbing and fun.
Meet the women and patrons of an infamous Mississippi strip club and follow them as they struggle with love, life and everything in between.
That's the premise behind this intriguing drama series which celebrates the beauty of the craft, but also makes it a point to highlight the challenges. If you ever wondered about the behind-the-scenes activities that occur at a strip club, now's your chance to find out more.
16. The Other Two
A hilarious comedy with a lot of heart, The Other Two revolves around two struggling siblings whose lives are turned upside-down when their teenage brother becomes an Internet sensation overnight. They try to make the most of the situation, with mixed results.
The Other Two is the kind of series that both celebrates and pokes fun at pop culture, with timely references peppered every step of the way. What really helps the show stand out from the crowd, though, is the family at the centre – sometimes relatable, other times ridiculous. You'll find plenty to love here.
Kevin Costner stars in this western drama as the patriarch of a powerful, complicated family of ranchers. He operates in a corrupt world, constantly at odds with those who border his property – be it an expanding town, an Indian reservation or America's first national park.
With beautiful backdrops and an engaging cast, Yellowstone is sure to appeal to western enthusiasts. For everyone else, the melodramatic storylines make for an appealing addition. In other words, if you’re a fan of complicated families, this one will be right up your alley.
18. The Great
A genre-bending, hilarious series, The Great follows the rise of Catherine the Nothing to, well, Catherine the Great. Tune in to see how she goes from outsider to the longest reigning female ruler in Russia's history.
The show has a wicked sense of humour and a stellar cast, which make it a delicious and addictive binge. The story may be different than what you remember from the history books, but there's enough satire here to keep you glued to the screen.
19. Love Life
Anna Kendrick stars in this charming rom-com anthology as Darby Carter, a young woman who embarks on a journey from first to lasting love. Turns out, the people we're with along the way make us into who we are when we finally end up with someone forever.
Offering a fresh take on the genre, Love Life is a light and breezy binge, anchored by an excellent performance from Kendrick. If you're looking for something comforting to watch after a long day, you can't go wrong with this one.
20. Normal People
Based on the popular Sally Rooney novel of the same name, Normal People follows Marianne and Connell, who come from different backgrounds. As years go by and they weave in and out of each other's romantic lives, the impact they have on one another is undeniable.
Normal People is an emotional series about love and class, perfectly anchored by two compelling performances. The show does justice to the source material but is also very accessible to those who are unfamiliar with the book. If you're looking to lose yourself in a tender and moving story, you can't go wrong with this one.
21. Penny Dreadful: City of Angels
A spin-off to Penny Dreadful, City of Angels is set nearly 50 years after the original series, during the Golden Age of Hollywood. After a grisly murder, a detective and his partner become embroiled in an investigation that reflects the history of Los Angeles, coming face-to-face with powerful, supernatural forces.
The new series is just as harrowing as its predecessor, featuring some excellent performances and stunning visuals. Plus, there's enough going on to keep viewers intrigued and coming back for more.
22. First Wives Club
The TV adaptation of the 1996 feminist classic, First Wives Club follows three women who band together as their marriages are falling apart. They find strength in sisterhood and they might even be able to enjoy a little revenge.
First Wives Club is an engaging series with a tremendous cast and plenty of funny one-liners. It also makes for a fast watch at only nine episodes, so you can easily binge it during a lazy afternoon.
23. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist
Missing the delightful madness that was Crazy Ex-Girlfriend? This quirky series will fill the musical hole in your heart. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist centers on a young woman who develops the ability to hear the innermost thoughts of the people around her as songs and musical numbers.
Due to the grim times we’re living we could all benefit from more breezy, fun shows in our lives, and Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist delivers. A touching blend of drama and humour with some tremendous choreography thrown in, the series will either win you over from the first scene or make you roll your eyes as soon as the first musical number graces your screen. We advise you tune in immediately to see where you stand.
24. Everything’s Gonna Be Okay
Everything’s Gonna Be Okay revolves around Nicholas, a neurotic twenty-something who rises up to the occasion of taking care of his siblings following their father’s unexpected death. A heartfelt comedy, the show navigates themes of adolescence, autism, consent, grief, and, most importantly, family.
The concept may sound overdone, but the execution is fresh and heartwarming. Everything’s Gonna Be Okay is funny, sweet, charming, and poignant, making it a must-see title - at least for viewers who love witty sadcoms.
25. The Vampire Diaries
An iconic paranormal series, The Vampire Diaries follows teenager Elena, who finds herself caught between two vampire brothers and a whole lot of supernatural intrigue. Her new entourage includes witches, werewolves, and doppelgangers - to only name a few. Try navigating high school life at the same time!
Featuring wild twists and cliffhangers every step of the way, The Vampire Diaries is superbly paced and brimming with characters you will undoubtedly root for. While the quality rises and falls across the drama’s eight seasons, the series never becomes boring, managing to find a way to keep things fresh until the very end.
26. The Commons
Set in a familiar future, this Stan original series is a gripping character-driven relationship drama revolving around a radical and gifted neuropsychologist who is desperate for a child of her own. However, as humanity faces next level climate change, the question of bringing a child into the world is a whole lot more complicated than it used to be.
The first word that comes to mind when describing The Commons is timely - so much so that the show might make for an uncomfortable, but necessary watch. It doesn’t hurt that the series is very good, benefiting from a hefty budget and some fine performances from everyone involved.
27. The L Word: Generation Q
The L Word revolutionised a generation. Now, its reboot is aiming to do the same. Set ten years after the original, the classic group of friends is joined by new faces as they continue their journey through the trials of life and love in Los Angeles.
Glossy and soapy, this sequel is likely to appeal to old and new fans alike, doing a great job at both catching up with established characters and introducing new faces the audience can root for. Plus, there’s plenty of drama to keep you glued to the screen.
28. Buffy the Vampire Slayer
A cult series that needs little introduction, Buffy the Vampire Slayer revolves around a teenager who has been chosen to fight the forces of evil (vampires, demons and the like), while also trying to maintain some sort of a normal life. Luckily, she gets help from the Scooby gang, which includes a few loyal friends.
A pop culture staple, Buffy is one of the greatest supernatural teen shows of all time. There’s action, melodrama, friendship, and quite a healthy amount of forbidden love. The special effects may look dated nowadays, but the storylines will still hit you right in the feels. All seven seasons of this beloved and iconic series are now streaming on Stan. If you haven’t seen it yet, it may finally be time to discover it in all its glory.
29. Grey’s Anatomy
Aussie fans, rejoice! There’s finally a platform that lets you stream this beloved medical drama. Well, at least the first 13 seasons. Grey’s Anatomy centers on the professional and personal lives of a group of doctors, initially following five interns who are just kicking off their career at a Seattle hospital.
Grey’s Anatomy is currently the longest-running medical drama of all time and has grown into a global phenomenon thanks to its appealing cast, clever scripts, and generous amounts of elevator flirting. Fair warning - the series is addictive, so you might want to put your life on hold for the next few months if you plan to tune in.
30. Family Guy
One of the most popular animated series of all time, Family Guy centers on Peter Griffin and his family, who find themselves in some of the most hilarious (and politically incorrect) scenarios imaginable.
The show doesn’t stir away from controversy, so it’s not recommended for viewers whose sensibilities may be hurt. It can go from zany and smart to downright insulting in only a few seconds. As expected, this only makes Family Guy that much more intriguing. More than 300 episodes are available to stream on Stan.
31. Godfather of Harlem
Godfather of Harlem takes place in the ‘60 and follows infamous crime boss Bumpy Johnson, portrayed by Forest Whitaker. When he returns from 10 years in prison to find his neighborhood in shambles, Johnson must take the necessary measures to ensure that his crime family will regain control.
A thrilling gangster drama, Godfather of Harlem is based on true events, which makes it even more addictive. This is an ensemble show by all standards, but Whitaker truly shines as the lead, offering a brilliant performance. Add some sharp writing to the mix and you’ve got yourself a gritty and absorbing hit.
32. Looking for Alaska
Based on the book of the same name penned by John Green, Looking for Alaska revolves around Miles, a high school junior who enrolls in a boarding school in order to gain a deeper perspective in life. Here, he’ll find a loyal group of friends and meet the charming Alaska, who immediately catches his eye. However, when a tragedy occurs, he’ll have a tough time understanding how something like this could happen.
A high school melodrama with a lot of heart, Looking for Alaska is bittersweet and touching, with well-written characters and a wonderful soundtrack. If you’re nostalgic about your high school years, this one will be right up your alley.
Ramy centers on Ramy Hassan, a first-generation Egyptian-American who is caught between his Muslim community and the frivolous Millennial generation. At the same time, he tries to do all the typical things expected of a twenty-something, like party and date. What could possibly go wrong?
Hilarious and insightful, the series explores themes that manage to come off as revolutionary by simply highlighting the American Muslim experience. Thanks to complex characters and clever writing, Ramy stands out from the crowd and ends up being more than your typical comedy. It’s a real treat.
34. Tracey Ullman's Show
This brilliant sketch comedy show starring, as you might have already guessed, Tracey Ullman, features the comedian offering her unique take on some extraordinary characters living in, or visiting, the busy global hub that is the UK. Each episode offers a glimpse of British life, from dusk till dawn, as well as including an original song penned by Ullman and composer Richard Thomas.
Topical and hilarious, the sketch show is a must-see for everyone who enjoys quality comedy. Three seasons are now streaming on Stan.
35. The Loudest Voice
Based on the book of the same name by Gabriel Sherman, this Showtime miniseries stars Russell Crowe as Roger Ailes, the controversial figure who turned Fox News into a phenomenon over the past decade. The series aims to shed light on how one of the US media's most infamous players arguably became the Republican Party's de facto leader, chronicling defining events in his personal and professional life.
Crowe’s portrayal of the media mogul is the main reason why this show is a must-watch - he offers a nuanced performance, managing to convey everything that made Ailes both charismatic and repellant. Plus, The Loudest Voice is more about the man than the politics, so it’s likely to appeal to a wide range of viewers, regardless of how little they actually know about Fox News.
36. City on a Hill
Starring Kevin Bacon, City on a Hill is set in the early ‘90s in Boston, when violent criminals and racism are part of the norm. The series revolves around a hardened FBI veteran and a District Attorney who form an unexpected alliance that will eventually lead to altering the city's criminal justice system.
Ambitious and riveting, the show boasts an impressive cast and highly benefits from great performances and engaging dialogue. While the plot can get somewhat convoluted, these fascinating characters will surely keep you coming back for more.
Based on the classic novel of the same name, Catch-22 centres on Yossarian, a US Air Force bombardier in World War II who gets frustrated with the fact that his own army keeps increasing the number of missions the men must fly to complete their service.
Thanks to a stellar cast and a sharp script, Catch-22 is a hilariously horrifying exploration of war. It’s almost impossible to pull off a perfect adaptation of Joseph Heller’s seminal book, but this miniseries comes very close.
38. The Last O.G.
Foul-mouthed, yet surprisingly sweet, The Last O.G. follows Tray, a man who has just been released from prison after 15 years. He returns to his former life only to discover that everything has changed - not only is his neighborhood now affluent, but he’s also the father or twin sons born to his former girlfriend, who is currently married to someone else. Tray wants to connect with his kids, but finds it particularly hard to make ends meet in this new reality.
Morgan and Haddish are both excellent in this addictive sitcom, and the story itself is one that doesn’t get to be told often, so it has tons of potential. If you were looking for a hilarious new binge, you’re in the right place.
A musical drama series, Nashville follows two country singers. After two decades as the reigning queen of country music, Rayna is faced with pressure to adapt and reinvent herself to stay relevant. Meanwhile, Juliette is a sassy up-and-comer with a troubled past who is determined to steal Rayna's place at the top.
With catchy tunes and compelling storylines, Nashville is so much more than a melodrama, providing its characters with enough depth to win over the audience from episode one. Plus, the occasional over-the-top twist never hurt anyone. This is best enjoyed as a binge, so add it to your watch list immediately.
40. Now Apocalypse
Now Apocalypse is a zany and sexy series that centres on Ulysses, a young man struggling to balance hookups with forging a successful life for himself. Things get complicated when he is plagued with foreboding dreams that suggest that a horrible conspiracy might be going on and that the end of the world is just around the corner. Or, maybe he’s just smoking too much weed.
Quirky and fun, Now Apocalypse is sometimes silly, other times poetic, always beautiful to look at. Fair warning - the show might be too wild for the casual viewer. But, if you’re looking for something out of the box, you’ll likely fall head over heels for this one.
Depicting the ups and downs of middle school life, Pen15 stars comics Maya Erskine and Anna Konkle playing versions of themselves as teenage outcasts in the year 2000. Surrounded by actual teenagers, the two navigate the awkwardness of adolescence, when the best day of your life can easily turn into the worst day of your life in a manner of seconds.
Quirky and hilarious, Pen15 sneaks up on you. Don’t dismiss it based solely on its ridiculous title - the series is zany and earnest, perfectly depicting both the awesomeness and awfulness of middle school. We bet the show will catch you by surprise.
42. The Golden Girls
The Golden Girls follows four women who live together in Miami as they experience the angst and joy of their golden years. The group, who has delicious chemistry, includes strong-willed Dorothy, spacey Rose, lusty Southern belle Blanche, and matriarch Sophia.
A classic for a reason, The Golden Girls features a tremendously talented cast and consistently delivers when it comes to laughs. More importantly, the show has a lot of heart, so it always makes for a fun re-watch. You’ll be in for a treat.
43. I Am the Night
I Am the Night is a limited series centering on Fauna Hodel, a young woman who finds out that she has been adopted. Set out to discover more about her past with the help of a troubled reported, Fauna ends up following a sinister trail that swirls closer to a gynecologist involved in the legendary Black Dahlia murder.
The two lead performances in I Am the Night are incredibly strong and the story itself is both fascinating and creepy. Helmed by Patty Jenkins, the series is riveting, interesting, and stylish, offering a fresh angle on a legendary murder. If you’re into noir, you can’t miss this one.
Scrubs follows a group of goofy doctors as they start their medical careers at Sacred Heart Hospital, learning to cope with the unusual challenges that come with the job. The main character is JD, an intern with a passion for daydreaming who will soon learn that the life of a doctor isn’t quite as he expected.
This iconic comedy is a mix of social commentary, hilarious jokes, and heartfelt moments, which makes it the perfect binge for when you’re feeling a bit low and want something to lift you up. Well-written and emotionally honest, Scrubs never disappoints.
Lost follows the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815, who crash into a mysterious island. They have no idea if or when they will be saved, so they get to know each other and explore their surroundings to increase their chances of making it off the island alive. Too bad the island has other plans.
The show was a hit for its first episode, offering compelling mysteries, a memorable setting, and intriguing characters. Addictive and mind-bending, Lost will grip you from the very first scene, pulling you into its universe with no chance of escape until you’ve binged all episodes. Consider yourself warned.
46. The Handmaid’s Tale
Based on the bestselling novel of the same name by Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale is set in Gilead, a totalitarian society that used to be part of the US. Due to a plummeting birth rate, the remaining fertile women are forced to serve families in order to help them conceive. The series centres on Offred, who is determined to survive the harsh life she’s leading and find the daughter that was taken away from her.
Grimm and powerful, The Handmaid’s Tale is the kind of show that makes you both uncomfortable and unable to look away. Elisabeth Moss gives a riveting performance in the lead role, backed up by a terrific supporting cast. As difficult to watch as it may be at times, the series is masterfully made, so you should definitely give it a go.
A Stan original series, Bloom takes place a year after a devastating flood kills five people. When a new plant is discovered with the power to restore youth, some locals are prepared to kill for it. It’s a show about regrets, living in the past, and the lengths some people are willing to go to be young again.
With an intriguing premise and some great performances from everyone involved, Bloom is a quick binge that will capture your attention from episode one. Stylish and engaging, this enthralling series should definitely earn a spot on your watch list.
48. The Bold Type
Inspired by the life of Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles, The Bold Type follows three young, outspoken women as they navigate life and love in New York. They work together at a glamorous magazine - Jane is a writer, Kat handles social media, and Sutton starts as an assistant but dream about a career in fashion. They are often mentored by their fierce boss, Jacqueline.
Despite revolving around the world of fashion magazines, The Bold Type’s main focus is the strong friendship between the three main characters, who have each other’s backs no matter what. Smart and bubbly, the show doesn’t shy away from tackling hot-button themes like gun control or sexual assault, but it does so in a thoughtful manner, ultimately offering a message of courage and hope. It’s refreshing to watch women supporting women instead of working to tear each other down.
49. Escape at Dannemora
Based on true events, Escape at Dannemora is a docu-drama revolving around two convicted murderers who pull off a prison break with the help of a female prison employee they get romantically involved with. The series, directed and produced by Ben Stiller, is a dramatization of the infamous 2015 Clinton Correctional Facility escape.
Escape at Dannemora doesn’t limit its scope to showing you the prison break. Instead, the series takes its time to put things in context by looking at each character’s life in detail. It’s slow-moving at times, but keeping up with it will reward you with a memorable tale and some fine acting from everyone involved. More character-driven than action-packed, the show is dark and intense, so it’s best to pace yourself with this one instead of binge-watching multiple episodes in one go.
50. All American
All American centres on Spencer, a talented football player who catches a break when a coach from a team in Beverly Hills recruits him. He decides to seize the opportunity and leave his violence-ridden neighbourhood behind, but soon finds out that life among the rich and privileged isn’t quite as rosy as he initially imagined.
The show is a thoughtful mix of classroom drama and class struggles, boasts an appealing cast, and offer enough soapy material to keep you invested in the story. A star in the making, Ezra manages a nuanced performance in the lead role, with the supporting players pulling their weight as well. The best part? You don’t need to be familiar with football to stay glued to the screen.
Starring Jim Carrey, Kidding follows Jeff Pickles, famous kids TV personality. But while he’s trying to make the little ones smile and teach them things on television, Jeff is dealing with a lot behind closed doors. The TV star is coping with the death of one of his children, which results in his sanity slowly leaking, causing trouble in both his personal and professional lives.
Although technically a comedy, Kidding is a very sad show. However, it tremendously benefits from a tight script and a fabulous performance from Jim Carrey. Bleak, yet still riveting, the series is highly recommended for when you’re craving something raw, honest, and beautiful.
Now here's a crime-procedural thriller you should definitely sink your teeth into (possibly with some fava beans and a nice chianti.) Hannibal introduces us to gifted criminal profiler Will Graham, an investigator who can empathise with anyone, including the worst psychos out there. Sadly, his unique methods aren't flawless. When an un-trackable serial killer crosses Graham's path he enlists the help of brilliant shrink Hannibal Lecter who, at this point in his career, is very much an under-the-radar cannibal. Snacks at this stage, not banquets.
In due (main) course the two form an effective criminal profiler partnership but it slowly becomes apparent that Lecter's brilliant mind has gone to the dark side. The good news is that as the seasons progress each course is more delicious than the last. Go in expecting polished presentation, plenty of gore and even the rare sprinkling of twisted humour. Bon appétit.
Rare is the show that can make you root for a cold-blooded serial killer, but that's basically Dexter's modus operandi. By day Dexter Morgan is a Miami-based blood splatter expert who helps the good guys solve murders; by night (and sometimes during the day, too) he commits a few of his own. Don't worry though, he only offs the guilty, so it's ok. Sort of.
Seeing dirtbags get their comeuppance is only part of this show's appeal – it's the episode to episode cover up of Dexter's double life that's the most riveting element. Because staying off the psycho radar isn't easy when your co-workers are cops and your own sister is in law-enforcement as well. Even if you're usually squeamish, prepare to be hooked on this character, what with his twisted code of honour and a growing desire for true, compulsion-free happiness.
This is the quintessential Western TV series, a based-on-records drama that focuses on the titular, almost-lawless gold-mining town. Though Deadwood does cameo some of the greatest gunslingers the frontier ever knew, at the centre of the action is Seth Bullock (Timothy Olyphant). He's a hot-headed lawman-turned-merchant who's forced to rethink his vocation when it becomes apparent that he's basically the only honest man in town.
Although his up-and-up character is instinctively repulsed by local “entertainment entrepreneur” Al Swearengen (Ian McShane) a jagged alliance between the two men is formed, even though the dislike is more than mutual. Together they resolve to try and defend their fledgling civilisation against greedy outside interests, including territorial government, the Pinkertons and other mining consortiums. Other things to expect: gratuitous swearing, in-your-face violence and a feeling outrage when you reach the end of season three and realise this is where HBO chose to end it.
Starring Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock and Martin Freeman as Watson, this acclaimed BBC series is a contemporary spin on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's beloved series. We follow the legendary detective as he prowls the streets of modern-day London, cracking oddball cases and solving difficult mysteries with the assistance of his helpful sidekick.
The BBC series has received tons of praise ever since it first launched, and for good reason. Sherlock is slick, smart, witty and visually stunning. Both Cumberbatch and Freeman deliver amazing performances. The twists and turns are thrilling and unpredictable. Moreover, despite allowing Sherlock to use technology to solve crimes, the series stays true to its classic characters, so even purists will be utterly delighted. A must-watch for mystery lovers and Sherlock enthusiasts alike.
Based on a rootin' tootin' character seen in Elmore Leonard's books and short stories, Deputy Raylan Givens (Timothy Olyphant) is a modern lawman who shoots from the hip like the West is still wild. Basically, he's that classic police maverick chestnut: a loose cannon with the John Wayne strut who gets results, while also being a thorn in the side of his U.S. Marshals Service bosses.
In his crosshairs are scumbags of all shapes and sizes – moonshiners, grifters, white supremacists, the Dixie mafia – you name it, he offers them the same cold-blooded logic. If you're a criminal armed with a gun around him, he's justified in filling you full of lead when the action kicks off. Admittedly, this sort of cowboy law-enforcement character hasn't aged well since 2010, but we challenge you not to get hooked on Raylan's adventures anyway.
57. No Activity
Stan’s first original series follows the peripheral players in a major police sting. The characters are involved in a stake-out where not much happens, so all that’s left to do is for them to enjoy each other’s company and relish in idiotic conversations. It’s a dark comedy centred on mundane human interactions, but that doesn’t make it any less watchable. Neither does the fact that the dialogue features a lot of improvisation, which leads to some hilarious bits.
Thanks to No Activity, Stan became the first streaming series ever to be in the running for the Logies, season one of the series scoring three nominations. Two seasons are currently available to binge, as well as season one of the US version.
58. Romper Stomper
Romper Stomper is a sequel to the 1992 movie with the same name, set 25 years after the events in the film. This time we follow a new generation of far-right activists and anti-fascists. It’s a bold and ambitious production starring Jacqueline McKenzie, Dan Wyllie, Lachy Hulme, Sophie Lowe, David Wenham and Toby Wallace. It’s also the series that helped a lot of us nurse hangovers on New Year’s Day.
At only six episodes, Romper Stomper makes for compelling and invigorating television. You’ll be completely mesmerised from the opening moments of the first episode, when you meet most of the main players, until the explosive finale. Plus, it’s not the kind of series you binge and then forget about. It will stay with you, at least for a few days. Fair warning.
59. Wolf Creek
A spin-off of the movies Wolf Creek and Wolf Creek 2, this Stan original sees John Jarratt reprising the role of deranged killer Mick Taylor. In season one we follow college student Eve, the lone survivor after Taylor attacks her family and kills her parents and brother. Determined to avenge the deaths of her loved ones, Eve turns from prey to predator and sets out to hunt down the notorious psychopath.
As far as revenge-driven TV series go, this is one of the best. Mick Taylor is a fascinating character audiences will be happy to get reacquainted with, while the series as a whole is gripping enough to keep you on the edge of your seat.
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This Showtime series stars Paul Giamatti and Damian Lewis, which should be enough information to convince you to add it to your watch list. Need more? It’s all about the high-stakes world of Wall Street, as the show tracks the approaching collision between a US attorney and a leading hedge-fund manager whose hobbies include insider trading and other illegal proclivities. Fun!
While season one of Billions received mixed reviews, there’s been nothing but praise for the show since its sophomore effort forward. The writing is sharp, the performances are great, and the fast-paced story doesn’t disappoint. If you’re into shows that explore themes related to greed and power, Billions will be right up your alley.
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61. The Other Guy
For a poignant portrayal of modern dating, look no further than Stan’s The Other Guy. The show stars Matt Okine as a radio host who finds himself back in the dating pool after a tough break-up. But while the series does bring on the laughs, its more serious moments aren’t too shabby either. That’s because The Other Guy is more of a dramedy, highlighting how difficult getting over a break-up can be. Also, #adulting.
The show largely benefits from Okine’s natural charisma, with Harriet Dyer also pulling off an amazing performance as the main character’s no-filter BFF. All in all, if you’re looking for a pleasant way to spend a weekend, watching The Other Guy is a safe bet.
62. Better Call Saul
Spin-off series can either go very well (hello, Frasier), or they can be total disasters (we’re looking at you, Joey). We’re happy to report that Better Call Saul falls into the first category. We’re not going to argue that it’s better than Breaking Bad, but we strongly advise you give it a go, regardless of whether you’ve seen the original or not. The spin-off is an engaging and stunning drama that successfully stands on its own.
Better Call Saul follows small-time lawyer Jimmy McGill, played by Bob Odenkirk, six years before his appearance on Breaking Bad as Saul Goodman. As the series progresses, viewers see the events that shaped the lawyer’s life prior to his Breaking Bad appearance.
There’s no shortage of comic-book adaptations gracing our TV screens nowadays, but Preacher is something special. Visually stunning and ridiculously addictive, the series doesn’t shy away from shocking viewers with gory scenes then immediately delighting them with some witty banter. The drama follows an unconventional minister who teams up with his ex and a hard-drinking Irish vampire and goes on a quest to find God.
Preacher is outrageous and disgusting, hilarious and bizarre. It promises a crazy ride and delivers, constantly crossing the line and pushing the boundaries of the genre in a delightful fashion. If you were looking for an unusual series, look no more.
Speaking of excellent comic-book adaptations, iZombie is another underrated show that should be on everyone’s radar. This fascinating series is a fresh take on the horror genre, proving that not everything zombie-related has to be gloomy and apocalyptic. In fact, iZombie is fun and charming, and yet the creators excel when it’s time to pull off darker or more thought-provoking storylines.
The series follows Liv Moore, a former medical resident who becomes a zombie after being scratched at a boat party. She takes a job at the morgue where she snacks on brains, absorbs the memories of those she feeds on, and then helps the police solve murders. The premise is exciting enough, but the execution is what makes iZombie a delight. The show expertly combines procedural and serialised elements. As a result, it delivers both compelling "case of the week" episodes as well as thrilling season-long story arcs. Also, seeing the main character adopt different personalities every episode never gets old.
65. Ash vs Evil Dead
Evil is always waiting in the shadows. So when a plague threatens mankind, a hero reluctantly embarks on a journey to save the world. That’s the premise of this glorious series that acts as a sequel to the Evil Dead films. Ash, the titular hero, gets help from two trusty sidekicks: his friend Pablo and Kelly, whose family was wiped out by the evil dead.
The show works well for Evil Dead fans and newbies alike, being both gory and hilarious. It’s over the top and twisted, sure, but that’s part of what makes the series so much fun.
66. Veronica Mars
Marshmallows, rejoice! Veronica Mars is available to stream on Stan, so fans of the series have reason to cheer. As for those who haven’t seen this marvellous cult show yet, what are you waiting for?
The series follows a teen private eye who deals with typical high school problems while also tracking down bad guys. A noir mystery drama like no other, Veronica Mars greatly benefits from sharp writing, heavy subject matter and a nuanced performance from Kristen Bell. The teen sleuth solves a different stand-alone case every episode while working to crack a more complex mystery over the course of a season. It’s fun, it’s addictive, it’s compelling and it's smart. More importantly, despite being released in 2004, the show stands the test of time, so you’ll enjoy it just as much today.
All three seasons are on Stan. Plus the fresh fourth installment, which landed earlier in 2019. This one follows a present-day Veronica as a full-fledged private investigator who is trying to figure out who is behind a series of bombings which occur during spring break.
67. The Office
Based on the acclaimed British series of the same name, this quirky mockumentary follows the mundane adventures of a bunch of employees working at a paper company in Pennsylvania. Their boss, portrayed by Steve Carell, is well-intentioned, yet his attempts at humour usually fail miserably, making everyone uncomfortable.
The Office gave us memorable pranks, hilarious moments and a Jim/Pam romance worth rooting for. The first season is a mixed bag, but later instalments are worthy of praise and multiple re-watch sessions. With all nine seasons available on Stan, now’s the perfect time to revisit the show or tune in for the first time. Especially if you had a particularly crappy day at work.
68. Breaking Bad
What would happen if you quit your job and became an outlaw? Meet Walter White, the antihero living this ultimate fantasy. A school chemistry teacher who barely makes ends meet, White is diagnosed with terminal cancer. To avoid financial ruin, he resorts to turning an old RV into a meth lab on wheels.
Over the course of five seasons, White goes from awkward to ruthless, but viewers keep rooting for him nonetheless. Because herein lies the power of this influential series: its characters. Sure, the action sequences and plot twists are great, but the depth and complexity of the characters is what ultimately makes Breaking Bad so compelling. The show remains a pop culture phenomenon even a decade after it first aired, and it’s available to binge in its entirety on Stan.
Meet the freshman class of Glendale Community College. They’re a bunch of oddballs who form a study group to help each other survive. They have very little in common, but their chemistry is the stuff of dreams. As a result, the show is funny, fresh and packed with pop culture references and meta-humour.
Here’s the thing about Community: you either love it or hate it. There’s no in-between. It’s unlike any other comedy you’ve seen before and its humour won’t appeal to everyone. But if it’s your kind of fun, you’ll become obsessed after only a couple of episodes. Six seasons are available on Stan. We’re still waiting for the movie.
When they were little, Sam and Dean lost their mother to a demonic force. To avenge her death, their father became a hunter, going after supernatural beings. Now the brothers are following in his footsteps, saving people, hunting things. The family business. Over the course of the series they deal with all sorts of threats, from witches and demons to fancier monsters like djinns and ghouls. Constantly struggling to save the world, their unique bond is what keeps them moving forward.
Despite being on the air for 13 years, Supernatural is still going strong, with fresh storylines and a loyal fan base. With episodes varying from thrilling to heartfelt, the show is highly entertaining, and its meta instalments always manage to stand out from the crowd.
71. Twin Peaks
Something very strange is happening in Twin Peaks, so viewers should gear up for a crazy ride. At its core a crime drama, the cult series toys with the audience via odd dream sequences, creepy visuals and bizarre characters. It follows FBI agent Dale Cooper as he travels to a small town to solve the murder of Laura Palmer, a high school student. He soon realises that in Twin Peaks, nothing is what it seems.
The show originally aired in the early 90s but was revived last year. Twin Peaks is dark, stunning, surreal and breathtaking. In other words, it’s more of an experience than a TV show. Both the original and the revival are available on Stan.
72. Parks and Recreation
Parks and Recreation is the perfect example of how a rough start doesn’t have to prevent a series from becoming a low-key phenomenon. Despite an uneven first season, the show reinvents spectacularly in season two, defying all expectations thanks to clever writing and a wonderful ensemble cast.
The series follows the employees in the Parks Department of Pawnee, a fictional Indiana town. They’re led by Leslie Knope, the inspirational and hard-working hero we all need in our lives. Charming and funny, Parks and Recreation will grow on you. It’s an uplifting series that isn’t afraid to give its characters room to evolve. Treat yourself and watch all seven seasons on Stan.
The show about nothing revolutionised the sitcom and rightly deserves a spot among the best series of all time. It stars Jerry Seinfeld as a fictionalised version of himself and revolves around him and his friends – most notably Elaine, George and Kramer – as they deal with the minutiae of daily life. The fact that they happen to be horrible people is just the cherry on top.
Seinfeld offers no growth or reconciliation to its characters. And yet it’s beloved and influential, even today. The Bubble Boy. Festivus. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. No soup for you! It’s such a huge part of pop culture that you’re familiar with these elements and catchphrases even if you’ve never binged the series in its entirety. Which you can totally do now – all seasons are available on Stan.
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