Miss Game Of Thrones? Meet Your New Pop Culture Obsessions
Netflix / HBO / Starz
If you’re still grieving over the loss of Game of Thrones, you’re not alone. Plenty of viewers are still trying to figure out where to go next. What do you watch after enjoying eight years of one of TV’s most addictive dramas? That’s where we come in.
Whether you’re still fruitlessly browsing through titles to find something to scratch that same itch or you just want to try something new, we’ve got a selection of nine shows that we’re confident will very quickly become the next best show you can’t stop talking about — each hand-picked for their connection to the mega-popular HBO series.
We’ve got drama, fearless women, character cliques, and just about anything you could ask for, even including a few murder mysteries. There are established shows a few seasons in that you can happily binge, and also a few new series about to light up our streaming queues.
With these shows, you’ll be over that final episode in no time:
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Drama; complicated relationships; complex storylines; powerful women; a leading man who knows nothing; murder; scheming
What’s it about? It’s all about the drama, baby. The fresh-faced cast of Archie Comics is plunged into a dark, sexy world of murder, betrayal, and intrigue. This isn’t your grandparents’ Betty and Veronica, either – Riverdale has taken the perennially pure Archie universe and spread dirt all over it to powerful effect.
The show works to slowly peel back the layers of a seemingly idyllic small town to reveal its seedy underbelly. Everyone’s favorite high school football player Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) navigates adolescence alongside best friend Jughead Jones (Cole Sprouse), Betty Cooper (Lili Reinhart), and wealthy socialite Veronica Lodge (Camila Mendes). Oh, and the entirety of Riverdale High is forced to face the death of one of its beloved students: Jason Blossom (Trevor Stines).
Jason’s sister Cheryl Blossom (Madelaine Petsch) initially works to uncover the secret behind his death, but the show quickly transforms into a much more nuanced mystery beyond that — complete with appearances by some beloved Archie characters like Josie McCoy (Ashleigh Murray) and Kevin Keller (Casey Cott). If you’re not sold already then we have two words for you: musical episodes.
Where to watch: You can catch up with current seasons of Riverdale on Netflix and the CW app.
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Dark storytelling; intriguing plot threads; unhappy endings; stunt casting
What’s it about? Black Mirror is an anthology series, much like The Twilight Zone, which deals with the what-ifs of modern technology. Each episode is an independent story (though some have references to others), and usually deals with a singular concept of technology gone wrong.
With how close we are to the precipice of the Internet, social media, and smartphones ruling our lives, Black Mirror succeeds because it projects just what might happen if we teeter off the edge right into techno-insanity. Each episode is a chilling look into the maybes of tomorrow and just how alone we can be despite the world being more connected than ever. It’s also rife with some exceedingly dark subject matter, and plenty of unexpected character deaths and unhappy endings.
Where to watch: You can stream all seasons of Black Mirror, including the spinoff Black Mirror: Bandersnatch on Netflix.
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Gritty action; addictive plot; murder; betrayal; memorable dialogue; superb character acting
What’s it about? This critically-acclaimed Western series is set in 1870s Deadwood, South Dakota. Over three seasons, it weaved an intricate look at life in the mid-late 19th century and featured the stories of historical figures like Calamity Jane, Wyatt Earp, Wild Bill Hickok, and more. Series creator David Milch used diaries and newspapers from the era to paint an accurate portrait of the time, and it remains one of the most evocative portrayals of the Old West.
Unfortunately, despite the acclaim during its original run from 2004 to 2006, Deadwood was canceled. In the time since, it’s developed a huge fanbase and concluded properly in the form of a two-hour film that premiered last month. It’s all come full circle.
Where to watch: You can stream the entirety of Deadwood and its accompanying film via the HBO Now app and Amazon Prime Video.
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Mysteries to unravel; drama; high production values; murder; grisly deaths; strong blond heroines who may or may not actually be villains
What’s it about? Westworld is a theme park in the near future that allows visitors to check out a realistic recreation of the Wild West. The park is inhabited by androids which both serve the guests of the park and as characters in a multi-day narrative meant to serve to immerse them in the western atmosphere. At the end of their pre-programmed story, the androids have their memories wiped and the whole thing starts over.
While the androids are programmed not to harm guests in any way, a few have started to retain memories from past loops. Because they’re able to learn and retain information, they begin to become self-aware. Westworld follows this journey and the consequences of the androids learning their entire existence is a lie.
Where to watch: Westworld is available to stream on the HBO Now app. Season 3 will premiere in 2020.
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Intrigue; sex; intense character interactions; a great soundtrack
What’s it about? Though Euphoria has yet to air, it’s an upcoming HBO series that you’ll absolutely want to keep an eye on. Zendaya, in a tragic and mesmerizing performance, takes the lead in a show that follows a group of high school students as they struggle to navigate teenage life. They grapple with the same kinds of universal questions that pop up throughout adolescence — as well as love, sex, friendship, and drugs. But Degrassi this is not; the show aims to depict today’s teens as they really are: messy, complicated, and addicted.
Judging by its first trailer, Euphoria finds Zendaya’s character in a rough place in her young life. Based on the Israeli show of the same name, the show is executive produced by Drake and will feature a star-studded cast (and soundtrack). It should also be rife with an excess of uncomfortable moments and good characters doing bad things — and we all know Game of Thrones had that in droves.
Where to watch: Euphoria will be available to stream via the HBO Now app starting on June 16.
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Mystery; murder; supernatural elements; multiple storylines; conspiracies; picturesque scenery
What’s it about? Dark is, well, exactly what its name implies. When children start disappearing from the fictional German city of Winden, the mystery begins expelling several skeletons from closets — and taking you on a multiple decade-spanning thrill ride. It follows four families that find their destinies intertwining across 1953, 1986, and the present in 2019. We won’t spoil anything further, but it touches on double lives, supernatural elements, and mental health in ways that are unexpected and unforgettable.
Where to watch: You can stream the entirety of Dark via Netflix.
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Shaky alliances; scheming; supernatural elements; addictive storytelling; cliffhangers
What’s it about? What would happen if, one day, all the parents in the world disappeared? The Society, a modern-day reimagining of the 1954 Nobel Prize-winning novel Lord of the Flies, examines what happens when a group of teenagers discover they’ve been left alone to their own devices, forming a society (as the title implies, of course) with dubious intentions.
After the teens wake up in a strange approximation of their regular neighborhood without the influence of their parents, they must work together to rebuild a life for themselves as they knew it, all the while trying to parse details about where they are and how they got there to begin with. Of course, this means alliances are formed, partnerships are broken, and people are dying to keep particular secrets. You never know just quite who you should trust — but it makes for a great watch.
Where to watch: You can stream The Society via Netflix.
His Dark Materials
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Supernatural elements; fantasy setting; secrets; scheming; source material; fantastical beast companions
What’s it about? This upcoming fantasy series explores an alternate world where all humans have their own animal companions called daemons. But they’re not just any animals, they’re actually manifestations of the soul. Protagonist Lyra (Dafne Keen) is an orphan who stumbles upon a dangerous secret involving Lord Asriel (James McCoy) that takes her on a twisting, strange journey which finds her uncovering a web of kidnappings and their link to a substance called Dust.
Based on the popular novel series by Philip Pullman, His Dark Materials will premiere on HBO later this year, giving you plenty of time to catch up with the books in the event you want a head start. And unlike George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire, this book series is actually complete.
Where to watch: His Dark Materials will be available to stream via the HBO Now app when it begins airing later in 2019.
The Spanish Princess
Game of Thrones fans will appreciate: Perilous relationships; treachery; romance; sex; historical setting; great cinematography; forbidden lovers; thrones
What’s it about? It probably makes perfect sense to watch a period drama after Game of Thrones, since it’s closest in tone and setting to the fantastical series, and The Spanish Princess should tick all the boxes you’re looking for nicely. Braids. Crowns. Costumes. It has all of that in spades, plus a little romance. Following the teenage princess Catherine of Aragon, daughter of Spanish rulers Isabella and Ferdinand, it follows Catherine’s journey to England where she meets her husband-to-be: Arthur, Prince of Wales.
At first, she’s thrilled, thinking she’s been receiving romantic letters from Arthur, when all this time it’s actually been his brother Harry, Duke of York. Plans suddenly change, and after Arthur is out of the picture, Catherine sets her sights on another romantic suitor. As you can imagine, complications ensue.
Where to watch: You can stream The Spanish Princess via Starz.
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