Now that it’s December, you may be tempted to settle in and get cozy. That doesn’t mean your entertainment has to be bland.
To help spice up this first weekend of the last month of the year, I asked our culture writer Shirley Li to pick a few spunky or nerve-wracking shows to stave off the winter slump. Happy watching.
This new coming-of-age survival thriller is “sort of like Lost meets Lord of the Flies meets Jennifer’s Body,” Shirley tells me. “The pilot is one of the best I’ve seen this year, and the show is incredibly twisty.”
Where to watch: Showtime
2. The Great
“The black comedy’s satirical tone captures how theatrical and nearsighted politics can become amid a crisis,” she wrote in 2020.
Where to watch: Hulu
“Small-scale in focus, but not in ambition,” as Shirley notes in her review, the new series frees the least exciting Avenger—Hawkeye, played by Jeremy Renner—from Marvel’s universe-building.
Where to watch: Disney+
The HBO show is a favorite at The Atlantic—notwithstanding some concerns about season three’s trajectory. If you’re already a fan, you can read Shirley’s review of the latest episode on our site.
Where to watch: HBO
5. Cowboy Bebop
No, not the new live-action remake: Shirley recommends streaming the original anime, “a cult success” that first aired in the U.S. in the early 2000s and is “anchored by a collection of vividly drawn personalities.”
Where to watch: Netflix and Hulu
Explore the week that was. Our senior editor Alan Taylor compiles scenes from around the world.
Read. In this week’s Books Briefing, my colleague Kate Cray explores the connections between storytelling and clothing, using writers such as Haruki Murakami and Joan Didion as examples.
Watch. Viewing Peter Jackson’s Get Back—a three-part documentary on the Beatles, now streaming on Disney+—is like witnessing four marriages fall apart, James Parker writes.
Licorice Pizza, playing in theaters, is “a bittersweet reminiscence about how difficult embracing adulthood can be,” David Sims writes.
The scariest movie of the year isn’t a horror film, Shirley Li warns: It’s The Humans, a movie set around the Thanksgiving table (available on Showtime).
Listen. “Mommy’s been having a lot of big feelings recently.” On this week’s episode of The Review, our critics unpack the new Adele album.
On The Experiment, our hosts discuss whether, when it comes to murder, intent matters.