Damages is really compulsive viewing.
Damages is really compulsive viewing.

Super compulsive TV show to binge now

What are you in the mood for this week? Some dry British humour? A thrilling American puzzler full of subterfuge and secrets?

We've got it all here in this week's list of what to watch at home.

SOMETHING NEW

 

Mystery Road was a TV spin-off from two feature films.
Mystery Road was a TV spin-off from two feature films.

 

Mystery Road S2: ABC's moody and invigorating Australian drama returns this Sunday. Starring Aaron Pedersen as gruff detective Jay Swan, it's a high-quality series that gives the viewer many elements to hook onto while also revealing something about Australia that many city-dwellers are blind to. For the second season, directed by Warwick Thornton and Wayne Blair, Swan is drawn into the case of a headless corpse in a coastal community in WA. Watch it: ABC/iview, Sunday from 8.30pm

Home: Apple wouldn't have known exactly how much our relationships with our homes would have morphed when it first dated this lifestyle show. This 10-part docuseries explores these structures where we live and sleep, and our connections to our communities, or sometimes lack thereof. Stories include a self-sustaining cabin in the Maine wilderness, the revitalisation of a poor neighbourhood in Chicago and Silicon Valley do-gooders building 3D-printed homes in Mexico. Watch it: Apple TV+

SOMETHING THRILLING

 

Glenn Close led the charge of movie actors to TV.
Glenn Close led the charge of movie actors to TV.

 

Damages: You could easily make the argument that Glenn Close kicked off the mass migration of movie stars to TV roles, first with a run on The Shield, and then for five seasons on Damages. And why wouldn't you when the reward is a character as compellingly complex as Patty Hewes, a ballsy, unsympathetic lawyer whose personal history holds myriad secrets. Those secrets then engulf her protege, Ellen Parsons (Rose Byrne) whose choice to work for Patty will change her life irrevocably. Damages is super compulsive TV. Watch it: Amazon Prime Video

Homecoming: This suspenseful and stylish thriller flew under the radar in its first season despite the considerable wattage from superstar Julia Roberts - that's what happens when there is this much on TV, that a show starring Roberts and directed by Sam Esmail isn't the only thing people are talking about. Roberts stars as a therapist working for a shadowy organisation messing with people's minds. A second season is coming late May. Watch it: Amazon Prime Video

SOMETHING FUNNY

 

Bored to Death is charming and diverting.
Bored to Death is charming and diverting.

 

Bored to Death: Offbeat and charming, Bored to Death only ran for three seasons but they were three wonderfully amusing seasons, thanks largely to its charismatic cast of Jason Schwartzman, Ted Danson and Zach Galifianakis. Schwartzman stars as a blocked pothead writer who decides to moonlight as a private eye, inspired by Raymond Chandler novels. Danson plays his publisher, a man with too much time and money and a petty rivalry with another publisher played by Oliver Platt. Watch it: Foxtel Now

Insecure: Issa Rae's HBO series is more of a slice-of-life character study than a plot or punchline-driven series - the laughs come from just living life and making bad choices. Set in LA, Issa is a young woman struggling with the same things as everyone else: money, men and friends. Insecure is insightful and funny, and gives you a really great sense of LA away from the Hollywood Hills. Season four starts this week. Watch it: Foxtel Now

SOMETHING OLDER

 

You can find full episodes of Jeeves and Wooster on YouTube.
You can find full episodes of Jeeves and Wooster on YouTube.

 

Jeeves and Wooster: Unfortunately, Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie's droll TV adaptation of P.G. Wodehouse's books are not on any streaming service or digital platform, but you can find full episodes on YouTube - it's just the not exactly HD, you know? But it's worth suffering through some grainy images to swim in the delightful comedy of manners of silly, privileged layabout Bertie and the ever-so-clever Jeeves in interwar London. Watch it: YouTube

Daria: Originally a spin-off from Beavis and Butthead, Daria is a very cool high school series that really leans into its dry and absurdist sense of humour. It ran for five seasons and features a cast of weirdo characters running from dumb jock Kevin to Daria's frivolous sister Quinn. While the characters are all archetypes, there are layers to all of them, particularly Daria whose laissez-faire attitude to everything belies her inner vulnerability. Watch it: iTunes/Google Play

SOMETHING LONG

 

30 Rock never gets old. Picture: Ali Goldstein/AP/NBC
30 Rock never gets old. Picture: Ali Goldstein/AP/NBC

 

30 Rock: Tina Fey's seven-season comedy is rock solid. From its long-running gags (how old is Kenneth, really? Or why does Tracy have so much history knowledge?) to the friendship between Liz and Jack, few comedies have been as clever and incisive as 30 Rock. Even if you've seen some episodes 14 times and you know the next line of dialogue or bout of physical comedy, it still elicits many, many laughs. Watch it: Stan/Amazon Prime/Foxtel Now/iview

The X-Files: You can really sink into a hole riven with paranoia while on a X-Files binge, and there are more than 200 episodes and two movies to get and keep you there. While the show's alien mythology arcs (which gets retconned themselves a few times), it's really the stand-alone mystery of the week episodes that stand out all these years later - like the time Mulder and Scully go undercover in a planned community and discover a garbage monster, or when Mulder switches bodies or the terrifying "Home" featuring a inbred family of killers. Watch it: SBS On Demand

Looking for things to pass the time? The best shows to watch, the funniest videos, the best hacks? Find it all at our Life (goes on) in Lockdown section

SOMETHING WITH THE KIDS

 

Lego Masters host Hamish Blake. Picture: Chanel 9
Lego Masters host Hamish Blake. Picture: Chanel 9

 

Lego Masters S2: Lego Masters couldn't come back at a better time for families frustrated by the lack of outdoor play. This amiable competition show should hopefully spark your kids' imaginations and get them thinking about all the possible configurations and worlds they could be building themselves. Downside? Lego is crazy expensive. Watch it: Channel 9 from Sunday, 7pm

Sonic the Hedgehog: If you were scared a Sonic adaptation was going to be a disaster, you wouldn't have been alone, especially after the first trailer. Happily, the abominable character design was revised and the finished product ended up being a pretty fun and wholesome (if not predictable) family movie. For the adults in charge of the remote, there's a wacky Jim Carrey performance as Dr Robotnik that harks back to his zany '90s peak - think The Mask and Ace Ventura. Watch it: iTunes/Google Play

Originally published as Super compulsive TV show to binge now



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