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As a 27-year-old guy with, as I’ve previously admitted, no hobbies, I watch a lot of TV shows. Well, not actual TV shows, of course. Cable shows are, for the most part, absolute trash. Now, like a good millennial, I stick with streaming sites. I watch Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu, all on my parents account of course. However, when it comes to good shows, shows that I actually wait all week to watch, no one can touch the king – HBO. “But which HBO shows should I watch?” You ask. Well, let me tell you. Here is the definitive ranking of the top 10 HBO shows of all time.
10. The Deuce
The only reason this show is in the tenth spot is because it’s too soon for me to be sure how good it’ll be. It’s only in its second season, but let me tell you, I’m hooked. Set in grimy, 1970s New York, this show chronicles a bunch of hookers and pimps founding (and fighting) the emergence of the porn industry. It features an abundance of nudity, a good amount of violence, and absurd hilarity from both pimps and prostitutes alike. Also, James Franco plays identical twin brothers who have love/hate relationship. That alone should get you to watch.
9. The Wire
I already know I’m going to get shit for the low placement, but guys, this show is so boring. I tried to like it. It took me three tries over the years to even get past the fourth episode, and I’ve never made it to the end of the second season. In theory, a gritty show about undercover cops busting Baltimore drug dealers sounds dope, right? Wrong. It’s slow, it’s boring, and with the exception of the scene of Omar walking down the street with a shotgun, it’s shot in the dullest manner possible. I just can’t do it.
Ballers is fun. Is it exceptionally well written, acted, or shot? No. But it’s fun. It’s basically sports-themed Entourage with The Rock and Rob Corddry (of Hot Tub Time Machine fame) cracking jokes. I go back and forth on whether or not I love The Rock or whether he’s gotten a little too into himself, but regardless, this show is a great choice to put on when you’re eating or need a pick me up from a more serious drama.
7. The Pacific
Speaking of serious dramas, this show is as serious as it gets. Following the true stories of WWII heroes as they fight the Japanese Empire in the Pacific Theatre, this will hold your full attention. I watched this entire ten-episode min-series in a single Saturday, and was captivated the whole time. This only reason this show isn’t higher on the list is because I instinctively compare it to its somewhat-prequel, Band of Brothers, which you’ll see further down the list.
I’m just going to hit you with the facts. It’s set in the late 1800s in the wild fucking west. It’s a classic story of a corrupt town versus an honest sheriff. And the word “fuck” is uttered, on average, 1.5 times a minute. I actually had to Google “origin of the word cocksucker” when watching it because I didn’t believe they were being historically accurate when they used it 300+ times over the course of the show. I was delightful to learn I was mistaken. Watch this fucking show, you cocksuckers.
I’m not going to describe it, because a) you all know what it’s about, and b) at this point, I have no idea what it’s about. Season One was dope until the stupid “we’re actually showing two different timelines” plot twist. That’s not a plot twist, that’s just ignoring the way shows are supposed to work. What’s the next “twist,” that Bernard is actually just a figment of Robert Ford’s imagination? Shit, that’s actually pretty cool. The second season makes even less sense, but that didn’t stop me from watching every second of it. The point is, I’m not smart enough to keep track of this show, but it’s still incredibly entertaining.
Is Entourage eight seasons of sophomoric humor? Yes. Is it about the four bro-iest bros dealing with fake problems as they stumble their way into success? For sure. But is it wildly enjoyable to watch? Absolutely. If watching Vinnie Chase lead his friends into a life of debauchery and fame through nothing but his own good looks and relaxed attitude doesn’t put a smile on your face, congratulations, you’re a Westworld robot.
3. Silicon Valley
This show is funny as fuck. That’s it. That’s my full review. I was born and raised in Silicon Valley, and the way this show makes fun of the nerdy-cool lifestyle of startups and tech companies in the Bay Area is spot on, and it’s about time someone knocked them down a peg. T.J. Miller plays himself (a hilarious piece of shit), and Kumail Nanjiani, Zach Woods, and Martin Starr will make you laugh out loud with their ridiculous rapport. The main character is extremely unlikeable, but also necessary to make the rest of the show funny. Great stuff.
2. Game of Thrones
If you’re not already watching and invested in GoT, you’re a loser and you need to get caught up ASAP. Yes, it’s a fantasy show involving magic and dragons and shit. Yes, it’s so complicated that I regularly need to watch with a character list and a map to understand what’s going on. No, none of that matters. It’s fucking awesome. Imagine a complex political thriller mixed with an extremely high budget action flick mixed with a porno. Yeah. If you don’t like it, you don’t have pulse.
1. Band of Brothers
If you watch one show out of all the ones I’ve recommended, make it this show. I’ve watched it three times, and I think I might go home and start it over again tonight. It’s a mini-series following the heroic actions of Easy Company paratroopers from the day they set foot in boot camp to the day they liberate Nazi concentration camps. Each episode begins with interview footage from the now-octogenarian soldiers who’s stories are the basis of the show. Watching these guys tell their tales of bravery and then seeing them come to life is something else. This show transcends mere entertainment. It’s a history book, a testament to the strength of this great nation, and a lesson that good can, and will conquer evil. All rolled into one. To put it plainly, this show makes my fucking dick hard..
Image via HBO