If you are anything like me, you love a good binge watch. There are times where my brain feels to fried to focus on a book, but I still want to consume a story in some way, which is where tv comes in. I've written previously about my top 5 shows to binge on Netflix, but I wanted to make a post about my top 5 Amazon series too (although I might throw in a few honorable mentions!).
1. Boardwalk Empire
This series follows Enoch "Nucky" Thompson, corrupt politician and gangster running illegal booze into Atlantic City during the Prohibition years of the 1920s. Featuring legendary gangsters like Al Capone, Charles "Lucky" Luciano, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel, and Meyer Lansky, the series is an absolute must watch for anyone interested in the gangsters of the 20s. The show combines my love of period dramas with the hard, well-written drama HBO is known for. Also, I'll come right out and say that Richard Harrow is one of my favorite television characters ever, across any show. The show only has 5 seasons, but they are great ones. All five seasons are available to stream.
2. Band of Brothers
Are you sensing a pattern here? I do love a period drama! This one is a limited 10-episode series focusing on members of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division, Easy Company. Seeing some of the most pivotal moments of World War II, Easy Company dropped into Normandy on D-Day, were involved in Operation Market Garden in the Netherlands, and the Battle of the Bulge. Even if WWII isn't your jam, I would still recommend this series. Between the gorgeous cinematography and great writing, the casting is equally amazing. So many actors involved in Band of Brothers have gone on to have huge careers, such as Damian Lewis, James McAvoy, Tom Hardy, or Michael Fassbender. It is a wonderful series that has absolutely stood the test of time and never fails to make me cry.
3. Sons of Anarchy
When trying to explain this series to people, I like to summarize it as Hamlet if everyone were outlaw bikers. Following the Shakespearian power struggle between Jackson "Jax" Teller and his stepfather Clay Morrow, Sons of Anarchy tracks the ups and downs of an outlaw biker gang in small town Northern California. I will say, that the last two seasons or so just got too dark for me and are my least favorite of the series, but I still think the series overall is worth a watch. All seven seasons are available to stream.
Everyone knows that HBO cancelling Deadwood was one of its biggest mistakes ever. The much beloved TV series focuses on the settlement of Deadwood in what is now South Dakota. Deadwood doesn't shy away from the dirt, violence, and unsavory people that were accurate to the time period. If anything, it leans into them further, giving the show the grit it is known for. Aside from that, Timothy Olyphant's Seth Bullock is one of my favorite television characters period and his acting in the role is great. It was truly a show that was taken away too soon. All three seasons are available to stream.
5. Teen Wolf
I can hear the eyeball rolling from here, but I genuinely love Teen Wolf. As with many shows, the seasons get a bit weaker as the show goes on, but overall it is still worth watching. The show is fun and incorporates a lot of supernatural/werewolf mythology. If you want high drama, see the first four entries on the list. But if you want to watch something fun that isn't going to emotionally destroy you (much), check out this show. All six seasons are available to stream.
- Under the Dome
Given how much I love Stephen King, it should come as no surprise that an adaptation of one of his works made it into this post. Under the Dome is one of King's more recent works and asks what would happen if an inexplicable dome dropped down overtop of a small town in Maine. With King's typical human villains complicating an already fraught situation, the story is one that keeps you guessing. The third season is batshit crazy, which is why it didn't make my top 5, but I think the first two seasons are really interesting. All three seasons are available to stream.
To sound like a broken record, I love period dramas. So, when Amazon put out an adaptation of Trollope written by Julian Fellowes (of Downton Abbey fame), I knew I needed to watch it. This series does not disappoint. Though lighthearted, it has drama, social scheming, and romance, plus Alison Brie as a sassy American heiress. What's not to love? The entire limited series is available to stream.
If Doctor Thorne is lighthearted and pleasant, Poldark is something dark and stormy. Another period drama, Poldark focuses on Ross Poldark, Revolutionary War veteran who returns home to find the woman he loved has moved on and his family's copper mine is failing. If you need any more convincing to watch the show, just take a look at Aidan Turner's brooding gorgeous face. All three seasons are available to stream
There you have it, a total of eight recommendations for Amazon Prime Video! Most tend to lean towards more serious and dramatic storytelling, but there are plenty of fluffier shows out there too. Have you watched any of these series? Are there any shows you think I should have included? Let me know in the comments!