June has the perfect variety of action, thriller, drama, and comedy to satisfy anyone’s early summer binging palette. From GLOW to Preacher to The Affair and more, learn more about what you should be watching this month below.
What it is: Based on the original Swedish series, Real Humans, Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley’s English-language adaptation takes place in a near-future where artificial intelligence exists in the form of humanoid servants called Synths. Of course, such miraculous technological developments come with larger social and political consequences. Who’s really the one in power?
Why you should watch it: Like film Ex Machina, HBO’s Westworld, and other prestige A.I. outings, Humans is a sci-fi psychological thriller for the thinking viewer. Top-notch performances and enticing plot twists will keep you glued to the screen. After over a year since the March 2017 finale of season 2, it finally returns with season 3 on June 5.
Commitment: Approx. 12 hours
What it is: This sci-fi adventure series from the minds that brought you The Matrix follows eight strangers from around the world who are inexplicably linked mentally and emotionally as “sensates.”
Why you should watch it: While the series is inherently escapist entertainment, there’s a pronounced depth to the social themes it explores across politics, identity, religion, race, sexuality, and more, and much of its adventure can ultimately be seen as allegorical to real-world issues today. While it wrapped after season 2, Netflix is bringing it back by popular demand for one finale two-hour feature finale on June 8. So grab the popcorn and get to binging!
Where to watch it: Netflix
Commitment: Approx. 23 hours
What it is: Niecy Nash stars as Desna Simms, the takes-no-prisoners owner of Nail Artisans, a nail salon in the swampy town of Manatee County, Florida. She’s flanked by a scene-stealing assortment of coworkers and patrons. The drama flares, however, when the employees of Nail Artisans turn to organized crime and start laundering money.
Why you should watch it: Full of camp, high-stakes crime drama, and whip-smart, hilarious scripts with performances to match, Claws may be the most fun you’ll have with a TV series this summer. Plus we’ll take any excuse to see two-time Emmy nominee Nash execute her perfect blend of humor and heart. Season 2 premieres June 10.
Commitment: Approx. 7.5 hours
What it is: Billy Bob Thornton is a pro at playing down-and-out, so you’re seeing a master at work when you see him put his spin on the trope in Goliath. He stars as Billy McBride, a disgraced lawyer who’s expelled from his firm. Now an ambulance chaser, he gets his shot with a new case to enact revenge on those who took him down to begin with.
Why you should watch it: Goliath creator David E. Kelley — Big Little Lies, Boston Legal, The Practice, Ally McBeal, Chicago Hope — has been attached to some of the best television series of the last few decades. Throw in Oscar-winner Billy Bob Thorton (who also won a Golden Globe for his performance here), and the result is must-watch TV.
Where to watch it: Amazon
Commitment: Approx. 8 hours
What it is: As the old adage goes, love is a battlefield, and with The Affair, we’re here to witness some emotional warfare. The titular indiscretion comes about when Alison and Noah meet on Long Island, consummate their desires, and in turn destroy their respective marriages to Cole and Helen, respectively. The Affair is told through the four main players’ rotating perspectives.
Why you should watch it: We know the Golden Globes love to honor a rookie series, but it’s not for nothing that The Affair swept them after its first season by winning best drama series and best lead actress for Ruth Wilson. Maura Tierney then went on to win for her supporting turn the following year. Dense and emotionally trying as it may be, these are all characters that you’ll fall in love with and feel for as the dissipation of their happiness and potential reconciliation plays out each week. Season 4 premieres June 17.
Commitment: Approx. 32 hours
What it is: While we first met Luke Cage on the streets of Hell’s Kitchen in Jessica Jones, when it came to debuting his own namesake series, Netflix brought our super-strengthed hero up to Harlem, where he’s attempting to rebuild a life after the experiment that gave him his strength in the first place went awry.
Why you should watch it: Luke Cage may have been followed by a billion-dollar blockbuster film straight out of Wakanda, but that doesn’t diminish the power of seeing a black Marvel superhero on the small streaming screen. It helps, too, that it’s an excellent series full of fine performances and industry heavy-hitters like Mahershala Ali, Alfre Woodard, Rosario Dawson, and Mike Colter as the titular hero. Season 2 premieres June 22.
Where to watch it: Netflix
Commitment: Approx. 10 hours
What it is: Sam Catlin, Evan Goldberg, and Seth Rogen team up here behind the camera to adapt Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon’s cult comic book about a preacher, Jesse Custer (Dominic Cooper), on a violently allegorical quest to “find God” — plus vampires, exploding holy men, extraterrestrial entities, and gun-slinging exes (played by Ruth Negga, no less).
Why you should watch it: If that soundbite wasn’t at least enticing, this series is probably not for you. But if your interest is piqued, Preacher is sheer perfection. Unapologetically bloody, brazen, and bad to the bone, this series comes at the height of peak genre TV and runs with the best of them. Season 3 premieres on June 24.
Commitment: Approx. 17 hours
What it is: From creators Liz Flahive and Carly Mensch, GLOW (taken from the real-life ’80s entertainment series, Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling), follows a group of down-and-out actresses who unwittingly find themselves cast in a televised women’s wrestling league. Following both their personal and professional lives, it centers on Ruth Wilder (Alison Brie), Debbie Eagan (Betty Gilpin), and the man who runs the league, Sam Sylvia (Marc Maron).
Why you should watch it: On paper, GLOW sounds like the kind of series that’s just so crazy it might work. Then again, it is from producer Jenji Kohan (Weeds, Orange Is the New Black). Utterly unique in the world of the half-hour dramedy, this standout series is lead by a stellar cast of kickass ladies (and even more behind the camera). Season 2 premieres in full June 29.
Where to watch it: Netflix
Commitment: Approx. 5 hours
What it is: From creator Courtney Kemp Agboh and starring Omari Hardwick as main anti-hero James St. Patrick, Power charts James’ life as he runs a popular nightclub in New York City while moonlighting as an underground drug kingpin. How he keeps it all together while leading a double-life is just the tip of the iceberg of this series’ juicy drama.
Why you should watch it: Over the course of its four seasons, this gritty crime drama has succeeded with a powerful ensemble cast providing compelling and gloriously soapy performances in pursuit of its titular vice. Season 5 premieres July 1.
Commitment: Approx. 38 hours