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What to Watch This Weekend? Here Are 3 Recommendations


It’s the perennial question: With streaming platforms constantly offering new content, what exciting thing will be on (and actually worth turning in for) in the coming days? Well, we’re here to help you sort through the chaff. Here are three things to watch this weekend.

The first two episodes of Hacks on HBO Max

Thursday’s premiere of Hacks introduced its two hilariously matched protagonists: Deborah Vance (the great Jean Smart, who also currently appears on Mare of Easttown)—a comedy veteran and QVC queen whose act is starting to feel a little bit tired—and Ava (comedian Hannah Einbinder), a headstrong young writer out of a job after sending an ill-ad vised tweet about a closeted politician. Thrown together by their shared manager, Jimmy (a very funny Paul W. Downs), they make an acerbic but deeply charming odd couple—one part jaded showbiz brass, one part liberal millennial rage. “They come from completely different worlds, or at least seemingly at first,” Smart recently told Terry Gross. “That’s been the fun part, is just their conflict. And the fact that I just get to abuse her horribly.” New episodes stream on Thursdays.—Marley Marius

Halston: May 14 on Netflix

What to Watch This Weekend Here Are 3 Recommendations

Photo:  Atsushi Nishijima/Netflix

Fashion, sex, drugs, drama—the life of Roy Halston Frowick had all of that, and a new Netflix miniseries from executive producer Ryan Murphy captures it. Ewan McGregor stars as Halston, an American designer as inventive and inspired as he was troubled, with Krysta Rodriguez, Rebecca Dayan, Sietzka Rose, and Dilone as Liza Minnelli, Elsa Peretti, Karen Bjornson, and Pat Cleveland, just some of the muses, friends, clients, and collaborators who filled out his glamorous circle. “I’ve found that Halston was so interesting because his environment was so controlled while his creativity was so chaotic,” Murphy told Vogue earlier this year. Director Daniel Minahan explores both sides of that dichotomy over Halston’s five episodes—the vision of slicked-back chic that emerged from his studio, as well as the personal and financial crises that led to his untimely undoing.—M.M.

The Underground Railroad: May 14 on Amazon Prime

The Underground Railroad—filmmaker Barry Jenkins’s dreamy, exquisite, and semi-exhausting 10-part adaptation of Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer Prize–winning novel—is not a binge-watch. Many episodes are more than an hour in length, and the series doesn’t have momentum so much as an accruing gravity, a deepening air of tragedy. We are in the antebellum South, at a cotton plantation in Georgia where Cora (Thuso Mbedu) and Caesar (Aaron Pierre) escape hellish treatment and flee along the railroad—here an actual, rickety underground train with escape hatches on the road north. Whitehead’s magic-realist conceit is richly rendered onscreen, and the performances are powerful. Mbedu—a newcomer from South Africa—has a difficult task, carrying a nearly wordless burden of trauma, but she is impressive, charmingly youthful one moment, harrowed by time the next. Joel Edgerton is more expansive, and frightening, as Ridgway, a slave hunter, and his sidekick, played by Chase Dillon, is the series’ young scene-stealer. Jenkins’s storytelling, as Cora moves from state to state, may not be fast-paced, but the series is suffused with unforgettable imagery—luminous landscapes, nightmarish tableaux. The Underground Railroad is not an easy watch but an indelible one.—Taylor Antrim

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