The Finest Exhibits on Apple TV+ Proper Now (February 2021)

Of all the giants in the streaming game right now, Apple TV+ is definitely the most difficult one to peg down. After all, Netflix has built an empire giving binge-watchers what they want, you know exactly what you’re gonna get when you sign into Disney+, and even more all-encompassing streamers like Hulu and Amazon Prime Video have managed to carve out some space for their in-house hits. But Apple TV+ is still pretty new to the game, and without a massive catalogue of old favorites behind it, you might find yourself staring at a bunch of original titles with no idea what to watch.

That’s where we come in. We’ve watched it all, from the great to the grim, and put together a handy list of the best shows on Apple TV+ right now. Whether you’re looking for something to watch with the whole family, a thrilling mystery to take your mind off the real-world, or some good old-fashioned star-studded prestige drama, we’ve got you covered with the highlight picks on Apple’s streaming service.

Check out our full list below, and for more streaming recommendations, check out the Best Shows on Netflix and the Best Shows on Amazon Prime.

Ted Lasso


Image via Apple TV+

Creators: Bill Lawrence, Jason Sudeikis, Brendan Hunt, and Joe Kelly

Cast: Jason Sudeikis, Hannah Waddingham, Jeremy Swift, Phil Dunster, Brett Goldstein, Nick Mohammed, and Juno Temple

You’ve no doubt heard the buzz, but believe me when I say: Ted Lasso lives up to the hype. This half-hour comedy series is not only one of the most pleasant and optimistic shows on television, it’s full-stop one of the best. Jason Sudeikis plays a perpetually positive college football coach named Ted Lasso who is hired to coach an English Premier League team despite having no experience in football (or “soccer” for us Americans). As it turns out, he’s been hired to tank the team in a revenge scheme concocted by their owner, but Lasso’s attitude begins to rub off on even the most brutish of Englishfolks. The series is a unicorn in that it’s a portrayal of positive masculinity and healthy competition as Lasso gently but effectively forces the team and the city to begin thinking differently about team sports – and life in general. Sudeikis is brilliant in the lead role, and the show is chock-full of incredible puns so don’t go thinking it sacrifices the comedy for emotion. It’s as satisfying, humorous, and uplifting as any show I’ve seen in the last five years. If that’s not a ringing endorsement, I don’t know what is. Believe. – Adam Chitwood



Image via Apple TV+

Creator: Tony Basgallop

Cast: Lauren Ambrose, Toby Kebbell, Nell Tiger Free, Rupert Grint, Tony Revolori

Servant was labeled M. Night Shyamalan’s new Apple TV+ series out of the gate, which makes sense since the big-name filmmaker directed two episodes and executive produced, but the series was actually created by Hotel Babylon creator Tony Basgallop. The result is a series that feels very much a hybrid of those sensibilities, living up to the mystery and dark thrills audiences expect from a Shyamalan project, while also feeling like something else entirely. It’s a strange and potent brew, making Servant a macabre and twisted binge-watch well worth putting on your list if you’re in the mood for something a bit grim, but undeniably addictive.

Lauren Ambrose gives a phenomenal (and phenomenally underrated) performance as a woman grieving the death of her infant son, when her harried husband (Toby Kebbell) and concerned brother (Rupert Grint) agree to help her through the process with the use of a life-like doll. But when she hires a nanny to take care of her “son,” the cracks in the creepy veneer are quick to show and that’s before all kinds of supernatural stuff starts happening. Servant is a contained, queasy piece of psychological horror that features some of the best performances and most striking cinematography you’ll see on Apple TV+. – Haleigh Foutch

Defending Jacob


Image via Apple TV+

Creator: Mark Bomback

Cast: Chris Evans, Jaeden Martell, Michelle Dockery, Cherry Jones, Pablo Schreiber, J.K. Simmons, Betty Gabriel

After playing America’s dad for a decade in the MCU, Chris Evans goes full dad-mode in Apple’s original series Defending Jacob. Evans stars as assistant D.A. and devoted father Andy Barber, who winds up trapped in a nightmare when the case he’s investigating leads to his own son being charged with murder. Directed by The Imitation Game helmer Morten Tydlum, Defending Jacob is a tense and addictive murder mystery, and while the show sometimes struggles to decide between pulp and prestige TV, Evans is reliably great in return to TV and he’s surrounded by a supporting cast of absolute knockouts, including the ever outstanding Cherry Jones and J.K. Simmons. – Haleigh Foutch

For All Mankind


Image via AppleTV

Creators: Ronald D. Moore, Matt Wolpert, Ben Nedivi

Cast: Joel Kinnaman, Michael Dorman, Wrenn Schmidt, Sarah Jones, Shantel VanSanten, Jodi Balfour

For All Mankind begins with a very easy-to-understand idea to explore — what if Russia beat the United States to the moon in 1969? From there, though, things get complicated as this alternate history leads to massive change within the United States, where instead of America pulling back on space exploration, there’s a commitment to space travel that promises to last for decades. Life in creator Ronald D. Moore’s isn’t necessarily utopian, as battles wage within the space program between military and civilian authorities, and the Russians nipping at America’s heels to compete. But the effects of that one big change to society are vast and complex, well beyond whether or not men and women happen to live on the moon, and Season 2 promises to go even deeper into what America looks like, when it hasn’t given up on the stars. — Liz Shannon Miller

The Morning Show


Image via Apple TV+

Creator: Jay Carson

Cast: Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Billy Crudup, Mark Duplass, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Néstor Carbonell, Karen Pittman, Bel Powley, Desean Terry, Jack Davenport, Steve Carell

Apple TV+’s supposed flagship series wasn’t as critically acclaimed as Apple might have wanted it to be, especially given the money spent to bring in an A-list cast including Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Aniston, Steve Carell, and scene-stealing Billy Crudup. However, the surprisingly soapy The Morning Show proved to also be quite an addictive binge viewing, as the behind-the-scenes drama about a morning chat show that becomes a scene of chaos after its lead anchor (Carell) gets fired for sexual misconduct. The question of his guilt or innocence, as well as the All About Eve-esque battles between veteran host Alex (Aniston) and the up-and-coming Bradley (Witherspoon), makes for a very compelling binge, with Gugu Mbatha-Raw emerging as a breakout by the end of the season. — Liz Shannon Miller

Amazing Stories


Image via AppleTV+

Creators: Edward Kitsis, Adam Horowitz, Steven Spielberg, Darryl Frank, Justin Falvey

Cast: Various

The Steven Spielberg-produced revival of the classic ’80s anthology series is Apple TV+’s equivalent to The Twilight Zone and much like The Twilight Zone (or anthology series in general) its quality can waver from episode to episode. But the first five episodes do feature an intriguing collection of actors, including Dylan O’Brien, Victoria Pedretti, Robert Forster, Kyle Bornheimer, Sasha Lane, Josh Holloway, Linda Park, Edward Burns, and Kerry Bishé. And the first episode, “The Cellar,” might be its strongest, a sweet and sad time travel romance that finds a fresh spin on the genre.

Snoopy in Space


Image via Apple TV+

Short and oh-so-sweet, everyone’s favorite adventurous pupper fulfills his dreams of becoming a cosmonaut in Apple’s Peanuts spinoff series Snoopy in Space. With a strong eye towards keeping the kids educated, Snoopy in Space sends the gang to NASA, where Snoopy and Woodstock seek to see the stars. And good grief, your kids are gonna love it. Apple knows a target audience when it sees one, and I saw this show absolutely take a kiddo’s heart when it first debuted with just one brief 10-minute episode. In fact, I don’t think there’s a stronger recommendation I could give than my nephew did, so I’ll leave you with the words of a 5-year-old, who sat down for the first episode asking “Who’s Snoopy?” and stood up 10 minutes later, ecstatically screaming, “I LOVE SNOOOOOPYYYYYYY!” – Haleigh Foutch

Home Before Dark


Image via AppleTV+

Creators: Dana Fox, Dara Resnik

Cast: Brooklynn Prince, Jim Sturgess, Abby Miller, Louis Herthum, Michael Weston

There’s a question to be asked about who, exactly, Home Before Dark is for, as the series based on real-life young reporter Hilde Lysiak is full of cute moments — but also thematically tough material. But no matter what your age might be, anyone who loved Harriet the Spy at the age of 11 will likely find the story of a girl whose family moves to a small town full of secrets, which she plans to investigate using the journalism skills she learned from watching her dad. It’s rare to see a father/daughter pairing as good as Jim Sturgess and Brooklynn Prince, and the mystery is also pretty compelling. It’s a low-key charmer. — Liz Shannon Miller

Little America


Image via Apple TV+

Creators: Kumail Nanjiani, Alan Yang, Lee Eisenberg, Emily V. Gordon, Joshuah Bearman, Joshua Davis

Cast: Various

Real talk: It’s surreal to watch Little America right now, at a moment when the concept of the American Dream… well, it’s not exactly thriving. But that doesn’t make the eight stories told in the first season any less profound or affecting. Based on real stories of immigrants from around the world, originally published by Epic Magazine, this anthology series executive produced by Alan Yang, Emily V. Gordon, and Kumail Nanjiani is alternately hilarious and deeply moving, with a stellar cast of both well-known faces as well as talented newcomers. There’s a strong chance that every episode will make you cry, if only for the memories of what this country used to stand for. — Liz Shannon Miller



Image via Apple TV+

Creator: Steven Knight

Cast: Jason Momoa, Hera Hilmar, Sylvia Hoeks, Christian Camargo, Archie Madekwe, Nesta Cooper

Imagine if you made a cocktail that was two-parts Bird Box, two parts Game of Thrones, and a healthy splash of The 100’s future-apocalypse aesthetic, and you’re on the right track for what to expect from See. Created by the always unpredictable and consistently weird Steven Knight, who recently helmed everyone’s favorite WTF movie of 2019 with Serenity and created the bizarre FX series Taboo, See takes the kind of big, wild swings you’d expect from a creator like Knight.They don’t always land, but you can’t say it’s a show that plays it safe, and with Jason Momoa starring as the leader of a blind post-apocalyptic tribe, it’s a big-budget, bigger-spectacle dark fantasy series that leans hard on shock value. – Haleigh Foutch

Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet


Image via Apple TV+

Creators: Charlie Day, Megan Ganz, and Rob McElhenney

Cast: Rob McElhenney, Charlotte Nicado, Danny Pudi, David Hornsby, F. Murray Abraham, Ashly Burch, Jessie Ennis, Imani Hakim

Mythic Quest: Raven’s Banquet is one of the underseen gems in 2020’s freshman series. Created by a team of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia familiars, the series stars Rob McElhenney as the “genius” behind the best-selling videogame; a well-meaning blow-hard who surrounded himself by a devoted and somewhat deranged team while building his empire. By and large, Mythic Quest is a familiar workplace comedy and it definitely goes easy on toxic video game culture (these things happen when gaming giant Ubisoft co-produces your series,) but it has the standout characters and comedic performances to make it feel fresh. It also has a downright stunning half-hour of television in the standout episode “A Dark Quiet Death,” and according to Collider’s TV Editor Liz Shannon Miller, “the first Coronavirus Era Masterpiece” with its special episode filmed in quarantine. – Haleigh Foutch


Hailee Steinfeld in Dickinson

Image via Apple TV+

Creator: Alena Smith

Cast: Hailee Steinfeld, Ella Hunt, Adrian Enscoe, Anna Baryshknikov, Chinaza Uche, Toby Huss

Hailee Steinfeld stars as literary great Emily Dickinson, but don’t expect a stuffy period piece with Alena Smith‘s Dickinson. The YA-targeted series is fun and breezy, sometimes surreal, endlessly playful, and keen to investigate the long-suppressed queer elements of Dickinson’s life. Steinfeld is radiant and charming and vexing as the mercurial writer with Anna and the Apocalypse breakout Ella Hunt bringing her own quiet charisma as her best friend and lover (and future sister-in-law) Sue Gilbert. A vibrant, cheeky and energetic spin on period romance, Dickinson doesn’t wind up being super weighty, but it’s a fun, fast watch with intro music you can’t help but dance to. — Haleigh Foutch

Visible: Out on Television


Image via Apple TV+

Emotional, educational, and impeccably constructed for compelling binge-viewing, Visible: Out on Television is a pretty special piece of documentary TV about TV. With all five episodes directed by Ryan White (Ask Dr. Ruth) and featuring testimonials from groundbreaking queer voices like Wanda Sykes, Anderson Cooper, Ellen DeGeneres, Billy Porter, and many many more, the docu-series investigates the history of LGBTQ+ representation on television, from queer-coding to contemporary struggles for on-screen equality. But most important of all, Visible doesn’t just document the battle to get where we are, it makes a gripping, heartfelt, and above all, convincing case for why representation matters, not just to the individuals who finally see themselves on screen, but as a vital force that helps shapes our constructs, and thus the reality, we live in throughout the eras. – Haleigh Foutch


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About The Author

Haleigh Foutch
(3199 Articles Published)

Haleigh Foutch is a writer, editor, host, actor, and cat enthusiast based in Los Angeles. She’s currently Senior Editor of Content Strategy and Analytics at Collider, where she’s been climbing the ranks and screaming about the unsung genius of Grosse Pointe Blank for nearly a decade. She also oversees Collider’s horror content and co-created The Witching Hour podcast, previously appeared as a regular panelist on Movie Talk, and has written for Rotten Tomatoes, Complex, Birth.Movies.Death., and more. You can usually find her sharing Buffy the Vampire Slayer memes on Instagram, rehearsing the Five Movements from The OA, and asking people about their pets.

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