• Donald Glover in 'Atlanta'. (SBS)Source: SBS
Out of the loop? These are the shows you should be watching.
By
Jenna Martin

26 Apr 2017 - 12:42 PM  UPDATED 5 Jun 2017 - 1:01 PM

Are you looking for your latest binge watch? Need something compelling to keep you warm and cosy as the days get shorter and the temperatures plummet? We’ve got you covered.

SBS has five of the biggest shows in the world streaming on demand. From HBO’s latest smash hit to prestige British drama and must-watch Scandi-noir, these are the hottest series in the world right now.  

 

The Young Pope

You’ve definitely heard people talking about this. If you haven’t, you’ve at least seen some of the memes. This bonkers show stars Jude Law as - you guessed it - a Pope who is, well, young. He’s also a chain-smoking, Diet Cherry Coke-drinking Brooklynite called Lenny who, despite his youth, is an extremely conservative, homophobic tyrant determined to send progress within the Catholic Church back a good 500 years. Oh, and it co-stars Diane Keaton as Sister Mary, the nun who raised our young pope. Because when you hear “Annie Hall”, you immediately think “nun”.

All jokes aside, this show is huge fun. It’s beautifully shot, well-acted, big, bold and so OTT it shouldn’t work, but somehow it does.

How hot is it?

While not HBO’s biggest show - that honour goes to a little-known show called Game of Thrones - it was a huge hit at the start of the year and a second season has already been commissioned. Praise be to God.

Watch the first episode:

 

Atlanta

Starring Donald Glover, who also created it, this comedy-drama follows the daily life of Earn, a Princeton dropout who is trying to get his life back on track. His plan to make a living for himself and his young daughter is to join forces with his cousin, a guy on the brink of stardom in the Atlanta rap scene. Consistently praised for its honest depiction of black America, Atlanta is funny, clever and unique.

How hot is it?

Earlier this year, it was the surprise, but well-deserved winner of the Golden Globe Awards for Best Comedy and Best Actor in Donald Glover. A monster hit among that critical 18-49 demographic advertisers love so much, the show has already been picked up for a second season.  

Watch the first episode:

 

Midnight Sun

The latest Scandi-noir series to take the world by storm, Midnight Sun makes it clear its motto is “go big or go home” by giving us an opening scene where the murder victim gets decapitated by a helicopter rotor. Directed by the team behind massive hit The Bridge, Midnight Sun follows the investigation of this murder, which happens to take place in a small Swedish mining town in the Artic Circle - a place where the sun never sets for six months of the year.

With the absence of darkness, no one can hide - from their responsibilities, guilt and personal demons. Midnight Sun takes many of the hallmarks of the genre - hard-nosed detectives, quirky suspects and beautiful, moody locales - and dials things up to 10. If you’ve never really gotten into Scandi-noir, this is a great place to start.

How hot is it?

Sydney Morning Herald TV critic Michael Idato called it “the best thing on TV” and many others the world over agree.

Watch the first episode:

 

Search Party

Dory (Arrested Development's Alia Shawkat) is searching for a purpose and thinks she's found it when she sees a missing persons poster featuring a girl she vaguely knew at college. Dragging her sceptical, self-involved friends and boyfriend along for the ride, Dory's quest to find out what happened to her former acquaintance twists and turns as any good mystery should, while simultaneously working as a satire of the millennial condition.

Featuring a star-packed supporting cast (Parker Posey, Rosie Perez, Ron Livingston), Search Party operates on multiple levels and effortlessly juggles several plot strands, but at its core is a story of a twentysomething New Yorker finding herself... as she tries to find someone else.

How hot is it? 

So hot. Critics have heaped superlatives on the genre-blurring series and a second season is already in the works. Just try to avoid reading too much about it online since the season one ending is best enjoyed when you don't see it coming.

Watch the first episode:

 

Witnesses

A French crime drama that gives all those Scandi-noir shows a run for their money in the chilling serial offender stakes, Witnesses (aka Les Témoins) follows a particular disturbing investigation. Dead bodies are being dug up and put on display in model homes, but to what end? And why is a framed photo of the former chief of police left at one of the scenes?

The crimes aren't the only mysteries to unfold, with the typically quirky lead detective, Sandra Winckler (Marie Dompnier), sharing some sort of history with the former chief (Thierry Lhermitte), who's dragged out of retirement for his insight. What's their connection?

How hot is it?

The French love it enough it have commissioned a second season, while critics in the UK and the US have hailed its "eerie", "creepy" tone.

Watch the first episode:

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Acclaimed drama Midnight Sun exclusive to SBS
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