Russian Doll Trailer

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

Hello and welcome to another week of Small-Screen Stream, where I bring you suggestions for TV shows available to stream right now. This week, in a minor tribute to Captain Marvel – who bursts onto the big screen this Friday – Ive decided to focus this column on shows with female leads and female-centric storylines. What better way to honor our first female-headlined Marvel flick than with a reminder that female stories are varied, interesting, dark, funny, and everything in between?

Ive cobbled this list together with shows from Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and HBO Now. Here are 12 female-starring shows you can watch from home right now.

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Best Shows Streaming

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

Netflix has been the talk of the town these last few weeks. In December, its original movie Bird Box became its most-streamed ever, and the company – once notoriously private about ratings – has started slowly releasing viewership information. And then, the Oscar nominations happened, where two Netflix movies – Roma and The Ballad of Buster Scruggs took home multiple nominations, finally breaking the wall between prestige film and the Academy.

I say all of this because this weeks Small-Screen Stream is front-loaded with a ton of new and returning notable series from Netflix. I balanced it out with offerings from other streaming services later in the post, but there are so many new Netflix things to talk about that I had to get to that first. With that in mind, here are the best TV shows to stream this week.

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Best Shows Streaming

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

It’s a brand new year and the slates are wiped clean – which means it’s time to start playing catch-up with TV-watching once again! The endless viewing cycle never ends, but streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu make it easy to sit back, light up the screen, and get lost in a new series. I, for one, spent my holidays watching nothing but junk-food TV, so I’m anxious to get back into some higher-quality territory. For this week’s Small-Screen Stream, I plucked out some series I’m catching up on and that you might like to check out, too.

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Best TV Streaming

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

The year is winding to an end, the “best of” lists are pouring in, and chances are you’re up to your neck in content you’d like to catch up on before the month is through. Plenty of those lists are filled with big-name series everyone knows – Westworld, Atlanta, The Americans, The Handmaid’s Tale – but what about the more underrated gems sneaking in? Have you heard of those, too? Did you know you can watch most of them at home right now?

For this week’s Small-Screen Stream – the last of the year – I’ve curated a list of many critical darlings that you might have missed in the cavalcade of content that’s come out this year. Some are recently announced Golden Globe nominees, some are criminally under-seen, some were recently canceled, but all were must-watch TV anyway.

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Best TV Streaming

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

If you’re anything like me, the last month of the year is always dedicated to catching up on everything you missed. That can be a pretty chaotic feeling, considering how many films and shows come out in the age of digital streaming. It’s nearly impossible to see it all, despite our best efforts.

For this list, I’m doing some counter-programming to that mentality. These are all things that you needn’t feel rushed to finish on time, but that can offer an alternative to all of the hubbub. These are feel-good shows, fun shows, weird shows, shows you can luxuriate in or fall asleep to. Quieter things, and many things you might have missed but don’t have the urgency of, say, The Haunting of Hill House or Sharp Objects. (Which, seriously, you cannot miss.)

Don’t let the holidays or year-end lists stress you out! Sit back with your clicker and enjoy these breezier series.

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Homecoming Trailer

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

We’re in that weird time of year where things have gotten cold, dark, and frankly pretty miserable outside, which welcomes the idea of long TV binges on the couch. We’re also — luckily — living in a time when that’s never been more feasible, as streaming services across the board are punching up their TV catalogues, seemingly preparing their patrons for the long, cold winter ahead. That’s bad news for our vitamin D levels, but good news for our eyeballs and sanity.

For this week’s Small-Screen Stream, I compiled a list of a few new original series, some great programs that just hit streaming, a few things you should definitely catch up on, and a healthy serving of comfort TV for the nights when you just want to turn your brain off and relax. Think of it like hot cocoa in the form of visual pleasure.

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Suspiria Poster

I’m still trying to figure out Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria. It’s been more than a month since I saw the movie at Fantastic Fest, and I’ve caught it once more in the meantime. In the immediate aftermath of that first viewing, I was lucky enough to speak with two of the creative minds at the helm of this rebirth of Dario Argento’s classic horror film: screenwriter David Kajganich and actress Jessica Harper, who originated the role of Suzy Bannion in the 1977 original and plays a mysterious role in the remake.

The two were gracious with their time and answers, and I was especially pleased to know that some of my initial misgivings about the film were addressed and eased by Kajganich. I don’t know that I’ll ever wrap my head around this massive movie — which I can’t stop writing or talking about — but I do know that I appreciate the insight Kajganich and Harper gifted me, and I hope our conversation can help fellow readers who might be parsing out their own complicated thoughts.

Below, we discuss the film’s gender politics, the influence of German filmmaker Rainer Werner Fassbinder (including a fun personal story from Harper about meeting him), and all that noise about a possible sequel.

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Suspiria Reviews

The halls of the Markos Dance Academy are barren; blanched of color and body, wide deco door frames and high ceilings gape like hungry mouths. The sizes seems preposterous for how few people dwell there: a handful of young women in the company and their teachers. But though the women are small in number, there exists in their building an unflinching, insurmountable terror. A thicket of wicked in its bowels. Numbers don’t matter when evil is thirsting in the shadows.

Luca Guadagnino’s palatial Suspiriaa remake of Dario Argento’s 1977 original — is in a league of its own, arguably the most interesting horror remake of all time, and definitely the best. Assembled into six chapters and an epilogue, it’s a nearly 3-hour behemoth, which will annoy some and liberate others, while forging a cinematic identity unto itself. You’ve never seen anything quite like this. You might be grateful for that.

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chilling adventures of sabrina clip

(Welcome to Small-Screen Stream, a feature where we share the best television shows streaming and where you can watch them.)

I’m going to do something a little different for this week’s Small-Screen Stream column. Instead of focusing on full shows, I’m going to highlight individual episodes of TV shows that feature Halloween-centric episodes. I went with a mix of old and new, and popular and less popular entries. A lot of sitcoms have done multiple Halloween episodes through the years, so I got creative about which ones I chose of the many.

Halloween episodes can be a great way to get in the holiday spirit with a little more variety and a little less time commitment than a feature-length movie. It’s also a good alternative for those of you who don’t do well with full-blown horror. I love to revisit my favorite Halloween episodes every year, so I thought I’d introduce them to you — along with some new discoveries and hidden gems in the back catalogues of these streaming services. Let’s get spooky!

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Cool Posts From Around the Web:

In high school, I first heard the myth of the invisible ships. Perhaps you know it. It goes as such: When European explorers first discovered the Americas, their boats were so inconceivably large and foreign that the natives couldn’t comprehend them, and therefore couldn’t see them. The theory is based mostly on observations from the voyagers, who noted that natives failed to acknowledge the massive ships, and that even as they approached the shore they didn’t look up from what they were doing to take in the sight.

The theory is probably bogus, but has stuck with me since I first heard it, and popped back into my head when I saw Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria remake at Fantastic Fest last month. A voyager’s massive ship and an experimental horror film are, circumstantially, pretty different; but the idea of being so utterly overwhelmed at the sight of something that you could barely comprehend it feels comparable. Suspiria isn’t a thing you look at once and understand. It’s a radical, carnal, enormous piece of work that took a lot of mediating, fire-stoking, and reflection to get to where I’m at now with the film. I imagine many viewers will have a similarly complicated experience.

That’s why I wanted to write out the stages of Suspiria acceptance that I went through after seeing the film, talking to its screenwriter David Kajganich, and witnessing the critical reactions pour in. I hope I can help others mount the beast that is Guadagnino’s insane masterwork. Let’s work the steps together.

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