Each week, we bring you our editor-curated “watch list,” filled with all the quirky hidden gems, salacious reality stars, comedy geniuses, and award-worthy newcomers that have us binge-watching and setting our DVRs. We hope this weekly list will help broaden your viewing horizons and fill you with escapist joy. Happy watching!
This week, there’s finally a new show worth watching: The Get Down. If you’re a Baz Luhrmann fan, or just a love a good retro moment, this is literally going to be your new jam. And while we’re traveling back in time, we might as well revisit a few of our old friends: Hannah, Lizzie, Raven, they’re all on Freeform’s genius late-night block, That’s So Throwback. It’s like comfort food for your child brain. If you’re looking for something just slightly more fear-inducing than Disney stars, Mr. Robot, Pretty Little Liars, and Fear the Walking Dead are all in full force right now. And for those of you who owe your boyfriends big time, check out HBO Sports’ NFL reality show, Hard Knocks. You’ll score enough points to control the remote come fall.
1. The Get Down
“This week, I’m dedicating all my free TV hours to Netflix’s newest original series, The Get Down. So far, I’ve watched the 90-minute premiere episode and it’s safe to say that I’m hooked. The musical drama takes place during the 1970s and follows a group of Bronx teenagers who help birth hip-hop in a disco-centric era. Baz Luhrmann created the series so you know the visuals are stunning and the music is epic. Plus, the talent of the show’s young cast—like stars Justice Smith, Herizen Guardiola, Shameik Moore, and Jaden Smith—will make your jaw drop. Want to know more about the series before diving in? Check out these six fun facts about it!” All episodes of The Get Down are available to stream on Netflix. —Janelle Grodsky Taylor, associate editor
2. Mr. Robot
“I have a hard time with appointment television (who watches TV on a TV anymore, anyway?), so I’m currently binge-watching season 2 of Mr. Robot at my own leisurely pace, courtesy of usanetwork.com. By this point, you’ve probably heard all about the show, which centers around a young programmer named Elliot who works as an engineer at a cybersecurity firm by day and moonlights as a hacker by night (basically the Batman of the internet). While the plot is not without its own drama, I can’t get over the fact that the protagonist (played by Rami Malek) looks, acts, and dresses exactly like my brother—he even lives in the same neighborhood in N.Y.C. The resemblance is so uncanny, I can’t look away.” Wednesdays at 10 p.m. ET or stream on usanetwork.com. —Claire Stern, associate editor
3. That’s So Throwback
“Adulting is a lifestyle that was thrust upon me without my consent, so my nightly trip back to childhood via Freeform’s That’s So Throwback is a welcome refuge from the daily hardships of being a grown up. This block of programming includes classic Disney Channel original programming from the golden age of the early 2000s. You can catch gems like Hannah Montana (vintage Miley Cyrus!), Lizzie McGuire, Kim Possible and my personal favorite, That’s So Raven. I’m sure all of today’s tweens are pretty confused by the non-HD quality and weird fashions, but for those of us that grew up watching these shows, the chunky highlights, bedazzled T-shirts and fedoras are sure to inspire all the nostalgic feels.” Watch That’s So Throwback weeknights on Freeform from midnight to 2 a.m. ET. Or, if you’re a responsible person who goes to bed at a decent hour, set your DVR and watch whenever you want. —Courtney Higgs, editorial assistant
4. Fear the Walking Dead
“I’ve been a Walking Dead fan since the very beginning, so of course I was sucked into the series’ spinoff, Fear the Walking Dead, when it premiered last August. The new series occurs at the same time as the original but takes place in Los Angeles instead of Atlanta. It’s interesting to see how the zombie apocalypse plays out in a different part of the country with different characters and different circumstances. Season two has been on hiatus since May, and I’ve been lost without my suspense-filled Sunday nights on the edge of my couch. But the second half of the season kicked off last night, so you know where to find me for the next seven Sundays. If you’re a Walking Dead fan but haven’t tuned into FTWD, it’s not too late to catch up. And if you’ve never seen either show, you’re making a big mistake.” Stream FTWD on HULU or tune in Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on AMC. —Tessa Trudeau, editorial assistant
5. Hard Knocks
“I’m not a sports fanatic. Let’s just get that out of the way. But, since my extremely patient fiancé endured hours of The Bachelorette for me without complaint, I agreed to watch this HBO Sports docu-series with him. The truth is, I kind of enjoy it. This season of Hard Knocks focuses on the NFL’s move back to Los Angeles after 22 years—which means I have a home team again with the Los Angeles Rams. Bonus: I get to watch them acclimate to the city I love in hilarious fashion (yoga, Muscle Beach, tank tops, and celebrities included!). The show takes viewers behind-the-scenes of the team’s training camp, and dives into players’ personal stories, forging a connection this non-sports person can relate to. It offers a fascinating peek into both the good and bad parts of football culture I never knew existed. So, if you’re looking to score major points with the football fan in your life, throw on Hard Knocks and get your game face ready.” Available via the HBO Sports tab on HBO Now and HBO Go, or check your local cable provider for air times. —Angela Salazar, senior editor
6. Pretty Little Liars
“PLL has officially sucked me back in this season. The series revamped itself following ABC Family's rebranding as the Freeform channel, with racier jokes and (slightly) more mature characters who can finally discuss their near-death experiences over mimosas, rather than lattes. Sure, many of the plot lines are still far-fetched, but it’s the anything-can-happen-in-Rosewood mentality that keeps fans coming back for more in the first place. I find myself legitimately wondering the real identity of the show's latest villain, A.D., at the end of each episode, and there are still so many questions to be answered before next week’s summer finale on Aug. 30. Will #Haleb reunite? Will #Ezria get married? Is Jenna behind everything? Who is Mary Drake’s second child? And seriously, what is Noel Kahn doing with his life? I’ll be tuning in to find out.” Pretty Little Liars airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Freeform. —Samantha Simon, assistant editor