TV’s Dead Zone: 7 Shows to Watch While Waiting for the Good Stuff to Return

Bojack Horseman (Netflix)

Yesterday on HuffPost Live, I was part of a new panel show called Spoiler Alert, talking about Masters of Sex, Boardwalk Empire and the end of The Leftovers. And the point I kept coming back to–though it was probably better made by my amazing facial expressions–was that a lot of late summer programming is grim as hell. Like I never thought I would long for the day for Homeland to start, or have the only light at the end of this long, bleak tunnel be the next season of a Ryan Murphy production, but here we are. What do we have to look forward to these days? Transparent on Amazon, but binge-watching is like it’s own separate thing–it will be devoured in a week or less and then we’ll feel slightly fattened for a day or two before going back to the starving wasteland that lasts until Girls starts back up again. In January.

So what should we be watching until then? Click through to find out.

Peep Show

For fans of: The Office, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Being John Malkovich, dry British humor

What’s it about?: Mark and Jez are roommates and Mark is a history geek office drone and Jez is a…musician? Sort of? Jez has a best friend named Super Hans who loves crack. Oh, and the show is shot in a fish-eye lens and alternates from Jez and Mark’s inner monologue. Jez is like the Charlie Day character and Super Hans is the Dennis and Mark is like…much, more worse.

Where to watch it: Hulu and Netflix
Top of the Lake

For fans of: Elisabeth Moss, Lord of the Rings, True Detective, The Leftovers

What’s it about: New Zealand detective trying to solve mystery of who knocked up suicidal teenager on literally the edge of nowhere. Also, there is a cult of women led by Holly Hunter and it’s fantastic.

Where to watch it: Netflix, Sundance

High Maintenance

For fans of: “deep” drug comedies, the combined work of Seth Rogen and James Franco, Dazed & Confused, web series

What’s it about?: An unnamed weed delivery guy is the narrative thread weaving between a series of (somewhat) self-contained vignettes, which range from the poignant to the hilarious.

Where to watch it: Vimeo
[vimeo 56893066 w=500 h=281]

High Maintenance // Olivia from Janky Clown Productions on Vimeo.

Delusional Downtown Divas

For fans of: Lena Dunham, GIRLS, art. Or I guess anyone who hates those things but needs to write a think piece soon.

What’s it about: Hannah Horvath, if she was trying to be an artist instead of a writer. And wore crazier shit.

Where to watch it: YouTube


For fans of: LOST

What’s it about: Invaders of a magical island terrorize mystical smoke being. Also, it’s the 10-year anniversary of the premiere on the 22nd, because THAT’S HOW OLD YOU ARE.

Where to watch it: On your box set, you nerd.

Black Mirror
For fans of: Twilight Zone, Doctor Who, Orphan Black, Philip K. Dick, sci-fi parables about the modern condition

What’s it about?: Self-contained episodes about the dystopia of our dark reflections from the screen.

Where to watch it: DirecTV

Bojack Horseman

For fans of: Arrested Development, Adult Swim, “anti-comedy” comedy, The Comeback, Eastbound & Down

What’s it about?: Will Arnett is a former equine actor from the 90s hit sitcom “Horsin’ Around,” and now he’s trying to write his memoirs.

Where to watch it: Netflix

TV’s Dead Zone: 7 Shows to Watch While Waiting for the Good Stuff to Return