40 Best Series on Hulu Right Now

40 Best Series on Hulu Right Now

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With titles like The Act, The Handmaid’s Tale, and Normal People, Hulu has long been holding its own in the streaming wars, able to go head-to-head with original-content heavyweights like Netflix and Amazon Prime. But when it became the official streaming hub of premium channel FX in 2019, Hulu has been unstoppable ever since with its array of original titles and FX assets (an enviable collection that includes Reservation Dogs and Atlanta, among others). 

Given all this content, it can be difficult to wade through your options. So below, we’ve gathered the most worthwhile shows you can catch on the streamer. These have been hand-picked by our curators as among the very best not just on Hulu, but on TV right now. 

10. Abbott Elementary

best

8.5

Country

United States, United States of America

Actors

Chris Perfetti, Janelle James, Lisa Ann Walter, Quinta Brunson

Moods

Binge-Worthy, Easy, Feel-Good

Abbot Elementary is a mockumentary that follows a group of well-meaning but cash-strapped teachers trying to make their school a better place. The premise sounds simple enough, but the show’s big heart and sharp observations about the rotting U.S. education system make it a breath of fresh air in the sitcom world. Abbot Elementary’s characters are funny and likable, while also being fearless, defined, and nuanced. 

The show manages to do the seemingly impossible: genuinely and lightheartedly uplift the people it represents. It shines some much-needed light on the public service these undervalued teachers provide, without ever sounding too preachy or patronizing: an impressive feat for such a progressive show.

9. The Bear

best

8.6

Country

United States, United States of America

Actors

Abby Elliott, Ayo Edebiri, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Jeremy Allen White

Moods

Binge-Worthy, Dark, Funny

The Bear is a frantically paced miniseries that follows Carmy, a young and over-accomplished chef who moves back to Chicago to take over his family’s small restaurant. As his first order of business, Carmy tries to rework the restaurant’s so-called system, but he is continually rebuffed by the kitchen crew, who insist on maintaining their scruffy setup. 

While Carmy and crew initially refuse to meet each other halfway, their tension soon gives way to an electric, workable chemistry, which then lays the foundation for a lot of surprisingly tender moments. Funny, gripping, and absolutely mouthwatering, The Bear is, as many critics have pointed out, an absolute chef’s kiss of a show.

8. Over the Garden Wall

best

8.6

Country

United States of America

Actors

Elijah Wood

Moods

Binge-Worthy, Easy, Mini-series

Over the Garden Wall consists of 10 episodes that together run just under two hours. While each episode stands alone, it’s easy to watch the entire series in one sitting. The story beckons you to go deeper into its fantastical forest called the Unknown, at the center of which lies a dark mystery, and two boys on a quest to return home.

Wirt (Elijah Wood) and his younger half-brother Greg (Collin Dean) are lost in these enchanted woods. Beatrice, a talking bird, befriends the boys and offers to guide them home. Here, the trio encounter singing frogs, beastly creatures, and sinister forces hidden in the shadows.

There is no other series quite like Over the Garden Wall, which so perfectly balances its comedic and melancholic moments. If you’re looking for something a little bittersweet, musical, and fun, this miniseries will surely hit the spot—that is, if you’re brave enough to enter its Unknown.

7. Dopesick

best

8.7

Country

United States of America

Actors

Andrea Frankle, Brendan Patrick Connor, Ian Unterman, Jake McDorman

This miniseries is about the drug Oxycotin and how corporate greed and corruption kickstarted a harrowing epidemic in the United States. Oxycotin was falsely advertised as non-addictive, which led to many people taking it for small or moderate injuries and becoming drug addicts. 

It’s a collection of stories of hard-working middle-class families and how they were ravaged by the drug, all set against the obscene wealth of the family-owned pharma company that sells it. At the same time, it follows lawyers and federal agents who tried to stop the drug early on and the obstacles they faced. 

Michael Keaton plays a small-town doctor, Rosario Dawson plays a DEA agent who was one of the first to look into the company, and Kaitlyn Dever (Booksmart) plays a teenager who gets prescribed the drug for a back injury. 

6. Casual

8.8

Country

United States of America

Actors

Britt Robertson, Michaela Watkins, Tara Lynne Barr, Tommy Dewey

Moods

Funny, No-brainer, Slice-of-Life

Michaela Watkins is truly the star of the show, delivering a major performance almost every time she appears on screen. The former SNL cast member plays a recently divorced psychologist, who moves in with her brother Alex (Tommy Dewey) and her sexually confident teenage daughter Laura (Tara Lynne Barr). Casual is not only the name of her sibling’s successful online dating site, but also the name of the game of every character’s sexual relationships.

Directed by Jason Reitman, the amazing director who gave us Thank You for Smoking, Juno, and Up in the Air, Casual features sharp dialogue and great performances, the writing being as profane as it is profound. Above all, you will have no choice than to take a good look at yourself, while rolling over the floor laughing at the show’s sexual shenanigans. That’s how smart it is!

5. Luther

9.0

Country

UK, United Kingdom

Actors

David OHara, Dermot Crowley, Enzo Cilenti, Idris Elba

Moods

Binge-Worthy, Dramatic, Gripping

Ok, two words: Idris Elba. This 11-time Emmy-nominated detective series is his show. He leads the action as DCI John Luther, a Serious Crime Unit detective, who is as smart as he is self-destructive. A committed policeman but frequently in over his head and prone to be consumed by the darkness of the criminals he pursues. And, finally, a main role where Elba can legitimately use his thick East London accent, innit.

Creator and writer Neil Cross (Doctor Who) has said to be inspired by Sherlock Holmes and Columbo. While this is a pretty apt description of Luther’s ambivalence, this detective delves into even darker territory than his cultural predecessors. In addition to Elba, Ruth Wilson is one of many amazing actors that grace the show, playing the seductive and completely psycho character Alice. Luther will routinely have you on the edge of your seat screaming “No, why did you do that?”, rooting for the DCI even when he’s taking all the wrong turns. This gritty BBC drama is British television at its nail-biting best.

4. Normal People

best

9.1

Country

Ireland

Actors

Daisy Edgar-Jones, Paul Mescal

Moods

Character-driven, Dark, Depressing

The author of the much-loved New York Times bestseller, Sally Rooney, is among the writers of this TV dramatisation, directed by Irish compatriot and indie director Lenny Abrahamson. Abrahamson, who also gave us Frank and the film adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s Room, builds on Rooney’s fantastic source material and an evocative soundtrack to create an intense, atmospheric drama about the vitality and violence of young love.

Initially set in rural Ireland, Normal People follows Marianne Sheridan (Daisy Edgar-Jones) and Connell Waldron (Paul Mescal) as they are figuring out themselves, their connection, and impending adulthood. And that is all I am going to say at this point, because I feel that it is best to know as little as possible going in.

Every detail of every scene feels studied, laying bare the raw emotion of the two main characters. The dialogue is sharp and funny. The acting is flawless. One thing is certain, if you like modern drama that is as much about how and what is said as about what is actually happening, you will have to watch Normal People!

3. Ramy

best

9.1

Country

United States of America

Actors

Amr Waked, Hiam Abbass, Laith Nakli, May Calamawy

Moods

Binge-Worthy, Easy, Funny

This Golden Globe-winning series is a comedy about, well, Ramy, an Egyptian-American who navigates an archetypal early-20s millennial life crisis, while being torn between what it means to be Muslim and to be American. With weird encounters at the mosque, overbearing, antisemitic uncles, kinky dates, and rampant drug use, it shines the spotlight on all the nooks and crannies of dual identities in 21st century America.

Both the show and its protagonist are named after its multi-award-winning creator Ramy Youssef, who was offered a show based on his own life after a successful career as a stand-up comedian. The soundtrack is also outstanding, combining tunes from well-known indie greats with obscure Middle Eastern funk. In addition to being hilarious, relatable, and deftly written, Ramy is a reminder of why diversity in storytelling matters. Not for PC points, but because it brings about original stories that make you walk in other people’s shoes while reflecting on universally human problems.

2. You’re the Worst

9.5

Country

United States of America

Actors

Andrew Daly, Aya Cash, Chris Geere, Desmin Borges

Moods

Binge-Worthy, Funny, No-brainer

You’re the Worst is the story of the relationship between Jimmy and Gretchen, or lack thereof. Jimmy (Chris Geere) is a smart but insensitive British novelist, a lone wolf with an excess of confidence. Equally smart and self-involved, Gretchen has clinical depression and a distinctive self-destructive streak. They meet, they have sex, she steals his car. As you do.

What ensues is, to some extent, a classic will-they-won’t-they comedy between two very cynical but often likeable people with a lot of humor drizzled on top. The electric chemistry between the two leads is topped off by their two weirdo sidekicks: Edgar, a war-veteran who suffers from PTSD, and Lindsay, a self-proclaimed “hot awesome sex fox” who married a nerd for money.

Written and created by Stephen Falk, one of the writers and producers for Orange Is the New Black and Weeds, You’re the Worst acts as if it cares about the standards of the genre, but, especially in season two, it also deals fearlessly with the subject of Gretchen’s mental health, which some have called the best explanation of clinical depression on television ever. Thanks to its witty writing, You’re the Worst will likely start off as the perfect watch-two-episodes-over-dinner-every-night series, until the plot sucks you in and you find yourself so hooked that you can’t watch anything else.

1. Atlanta

9.6

Country

United States of America

Actors

Brian Tyree Henry, Donald Glover, Keith Stanfield, Lakeith Stanfield

Moods

Funny, No-brainer, Slice-of-Life

American “dramedy” Atlanta is the work of mastermind Donald Glover, who you may already know without knowing – as a stand-up comedian, Troy Barnes from Community, or two-time Grammy nominated rapper Childish Gambino. It’s easy to tell from this list that Glover is a man of many talents. And Atlanta indeed feels like a complete use of his multifarious arsenal, he directs, writes, and plays the lead character.

Earnest “Earn” Marks Earn (Glover) is a 30-something, a highly intelligent, de facto homeless Princeton dropout striving to redeem himself in the eyes of his ex-girlfriend and mother of his baby. He reconnects with his cousin after learning that he is finding fame as the up-and-coming rapper “Paper Boi”.

The show is full of moments of absurdity and hilarious characters (look out for Darius, played by LaKeith Stanfield), but also offers a genuine look at modern life. A fun, sharp and unique show that can digress at any moment.

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