As you welcome another month of winter festivities and some warm snuggles around the fireplace, we have lined up all the mini-series from HBO max that you should add to your to-watch list this season. With the perfect amount of drama, thrill, crime, mystery, and romance minus the multiple-season watch, these mini-series are a great way to relax this holiday season.
So put on your Christmas PJs, tap silent mode on all your devices, and put your headphone on. You are in for a fun ride!
This 2019 release is one of HBO’s finest releases to date. Rated 9.4 on IMDb, this 5 episode series rigorously traces the events that led to the radiation-related fatalities in a nuclear reactor. Narrating all that went down in this unique and possibly the worst disaster in modern human history on 26th April 1986 in the north of Ukraine, SSR, this series will give you goosebumps.
Supported by a strong cast, including Jared Harris, Emily Watson, and Stellan Skarsgard, this mini-series is not for the light-hearted. The dramatic portrayal of heroism, corruption, and incompetence that prevailed in 1986 makes for a thrilling watch, and if you enjoy watching drama based on real-life events, you are bound to enjoy it.
Angels in America
Arguably one of HBO’s best stage play adaptations, this 2003 release explores the themes of fantasy and drama. Based on the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s, the story centralizes around a gay man Prior Walter, played by the wonderful Justin Kirk, and his encounter with an angel as he deals with homophobia. The stellar cast utilized wonderfully by the director, Mike Nicholas, plays parallel storylines in this magic and real-life politics collision so well that this mini-series holds the record of winning all the major Emmys it was nominated for. And rightfully so.
Years and years
Sci-fi drama paired with some cynical British humor is exactly how we will define this 6 episode mini-series. Following the story of The Lyons, this mini-series takes us on a journey of what first-hand experience would be like if we were to face the consequences of globalization and climate change. Of course, like all the sci-fi movies set in the future, the British production explores the pervasive spread of new technologies going mayhem. Supporting a cast that includes legendary actor Emma Thompson, Russel Tovey, Rory Kinnear, and Jessica Hynes, among others, years and years, is a not-to-be-missed watch.
You know HBO max is doing it right when a crime production sweeps the Emmys with a whopping number of 26 nominations and 11 statuettes. Thoughtfully exploring the sensitive themes of political violence, supremacism, and infiltration of a problematic social group in government institutions, the story masterfully narrates the supposed consequences of Alan Moore’s comic book series of the same name. The story follows a group of masked vigilantes who band together against the government’s portrayal of them as criminals. Played by a spectacular cast including Regina King, Jeremy Irons, Jean Smart, and Don Johnson, the mini-series will give you all the right feels, making it a brilliant watch.
If you are part of an audience that enjoys biographical drama or true crime documentaries, this TV show is a must-watch. Exploring the life of writer Michael Peterson, played by Colin Firth, the mini-series on HBO details the mysterious death of his wife Kathleen, who was found dead near the staircase in their North Carolina home. It is based on a true crime documentary series released in 2004 and became an instant hit after release due to an apt depiction of modern family drama. The staircase has a total number of 8 episodes, which you will find yourself binge-watching because of the gripping dark story.
The most wonderful part of watching this mini-series is watching Amy Adams on the small screen. However, it will be unfair to undermine any other aspects of the show, including the wonderful writing. If you enjoyed watching the movie version of gone girl, this series is a treat for you since the same author wrote the book versions of both.
Playing the journalist Camille Preaker, Amy Adams is a treat to watch as the series explores a captivating blend of mental health with the detective genre. Following the story of her troubled family relationships and past traumas, as she returns to investigate murders in her hometown, this mini-series is bound to keep you on the edge of your seat for the entiriety of eight one-hour episodes. Thrilling and complex in equal parts, this psychological thriller is a must-watch.
I Know This Much is True
If you are looking to watch a strong story in a relatively short time, this Mark Ruffalo starrer is just what you need on your list. We all know him as the brilliant actor he is from his portrayal of the Great Hulk in the MCU, but his performance will surprise you in this TV series. And the best part? He plays a double character in the series, portraying two complex and contrasting characters. An unforgettable performance that won him an Emmy and wide critical acclaim. The series is an intelligently written drama focusing on two twin brothers whose lives are in chaos as one tries to help the other in his fight against schizophrenia. Be warned, it is an emotional watch and will surely tug at your tear-strings, so we advise some family comfy couch time for this watch.
Mare of East Town
This mini-series is a gripping 7-episode watch unraveling the story of a small-town detective, Mare. The viewers follow her journey as she tries to solve a brutal murder case while her life crumbles around her. With a direction and captivating story like none other, this mini-series has gained critical acclaim and a large fan base. Starring the oscar-winning Kate Winslet, arguably one of the most wonderful living actresses, the mystery in the storyline keeps the viewers hooked throughout as Mare dives deeper into her investigation, and the series sets a dark atmosphere. It also helps that the remaining cast includes renowned names like Julianne Nicholson and Evan Peters.
Even if you are someone who doesn’t usually enjoy watching criminal dramas, this series is sure to captivate your attention and keep you hooked to the very end.
Based on the real-life experiences of ‘Rolling Stone journalist Evan Wright, this seven-part biographical series on HBO max will unveil a new face of American war to you. Chronicling his experiences in Baghdad during the first 40 days of the American war, this is not a series for the faint-hearted. The series explores the struggles of the first reconnaissance Battalion as the braveheart journalist sets out to face combat with them.
Lee Tergesan does full justice to the role of Evan Wright with his commendable performance, making the series a treat to watch.
The lady and the dale
A television documentary narrating the story of the woman who launched the twentieth-century motor car corporation in the middle of a global gas crisis, this series is full of crime drama. A web of stories starting from that of a convicted fraudster entangled in manhunts, media biases, corruption of the judiciary system, and transgender politics, the mini-series gained the attention of a large audience upon its release. The most interesting part is that the documentary includes the interviews of Elizabeth Carmichael’s children and their experiences during the entire fiasco of the 1970s.
Now that you have a list of what is worth binge-watching this weekend, from crime to family drama and psychological thrillers, it is time to grab a big bowl of popcorn and a warm blanket because you won’t be getting up from that comfy couch any time soon.