Binge-worthy shows on HBO Max


Madelaine Vikse

HBO Max is a popular streaming platform owned by AT&T where watchers can view shows such as “Euphoria,” “Succession,” “Westworld” and more. (Madelaine Vikse | Northern Star)

HBO has built an impressive catalog of content since its inception in the 1970s. The channel has made memorable shows and movies that become pop culture staples like “True Blood,” “Game of Thrones” and “True Detective.” In May of 2020 streaming service HBO Max was released and was mainly built upon HBO’s content, but also serves as a content hub for WarnerMedia. The service includes original films and shows from HBO and expands to the massive library of content from Warner Bros. 

The service made bold moves during the pandemic by releasing new films directly to the service the same day as their theater release. This caused the show to see increasing subscription numbers and more people discovering the wonders of the subscription service. There are some entertaining shows to binge-watch on the service. Some may be well known in the pop culture zeitgeist while others may have flown under the radar and are underrated amongst most audiences. 

This list compiles a collection of titles that I recommend for audiences to binge-watch. 

“The Wire”

This early 2000s crime drama series is a masterpiece. The show was set and produced in Baltimore, Maryland and showed the corruption and correlation to law enforcement through different institutions throughout the city. These institutions include the education system, political spectrum and the perspective of working class citizens. The series was notably a breakout role for actors such as Idris Elba.

The Outsider”

“The Outsider” is an adaptation of a Stephen King novel of the same name. It is suspenseful and intriguing like many other Stephen King adaptations. The show stars Jason Bateman, Cynthia Erivo and Ben Mendelsohn. It is not an overly horrifying series, but the presence of a shapeshifting creature combined with the writing of this show is amazing. 


“Watchmen” is based on the graphic novel of the same name and the series works as a sequel to the graphic novel. The story is set in an alternate version of the United States of America in which masked vigilantes are treated as outlaws. This show still manages to capture some of those same themes from the original graphic novel that made it stand out in the first place. At its core, the series is a murder mystery involving superheroes and a subtle but important commentary on race and politics. 


“Westworld” is a dystopian science fiction series based on a movie of the same name from 1973. The series explores themes of greed, violence and the meaning of life. “Westworld” is also the name of the amusement park in which the majority of the story takes place, at least for the first two seasons. It’s reminiscent of the plot of “The Terminator” film series in which technology rises against its creators. The show depicts the various actions and events that take place in the amusement park in which wealthy people pay to interact with realistic androids. The story becomes intricate and shows how cruel humans can be. 


Season two of this series has started being released weekly, as of Jan. 9. This series explores the dark sides of modern youth and culture. The cinematography is beautiful and its use of color is entrancing. That isn’t even the most captivating part of the show. The main character is a teenage functioning drug addict who is struggling to beat her addiction and admittedly fails at times. The rest of the cast of characters also have their own issues. This show follows the characters as they struggle with anxiety, mental health issues, sexuality and societal pressures.