What’s new on Netflix? Hot on Hulu? Amazing on Amazon? Crossing the Streams scours the streaming services to find the best shows and specials freshly available for online viewing. You’re welcome!
BOSCH: SEASON 2 (Amazon)
The high-caliber crime drama based on Michael Connelly’s best-selling novels exudes even more of a noir feel in Season 2 as Titus Welliver’s LAPD gumshoe gets ensnared in a case with a femme fatale (Star Trek: Voyager’s Jeri “Seven of Nine” Ryan, who’s still a 10) whose porn-mogul husband is murdered. The supporting cast — including a trio of Wire alums: Jamie Hector, Lance Reddick, and James Ransone — and 24’s Sarah Clarke as Bosch’s poker-champ ex-wife — remains stellar, and The Killing’s Brent Sexton steals the season as a seemingly meek security guard. With a smoky jazz score (and a cameo from Late Show with Stephen Colbert sax symbol Grace Kelly), Bosch casts an entrancing spell and leaves fans wanting more, just like Connelly’s books do.
While we wait for another (hopefully better) season of Arrested Development, here’s a new dramedy from star-cocreator Will Arnett and exec producer Mitch Hurwitz. In it, Arnett plays Chip, a recovering addict trying to put his life back together in Venice, Calif. The ensemble boasts Robert Wisdom (another Wire alum — they’re everywhere!), Sons of Anarchy’s Mark Boone Junior, Superbad’s Christopher Mintz-Plasse, and Heather Graham (as Arnett’s ex-wife). It’s good to see Arnett challenging himself again after coasting through sub-par sitcoms like The Millers. In other words, his development as an actor no longer seems arrested.
THE CHARACTERS (Netflix)
Eight up-and-coming comedians — Dr. Brown, John Early, Kate Berlant, Henry Zebrowski, Natasha Rothwell, Paul W. Downs, Lauren Lapkus and Tim Robinson — are given their own half-hour episodes to do whatever they want. The result is a free-form skitcom featuring parodies of The Bachelorette, a blind-cop show and more. The most familiar face may be Robinson, who did a short stint on SNL and will soon co-star with Veep’s Sam Richardson in their own Comedy Central series Detroiters. This oddball octet may not be ready for network late-night, but they’re a perfect fit for Netflix.
KINGDOM: SEASONS 1-3 (Acorn TV)
While his former Brit-com partner Hugh Laurie was starring in House, Stephen Fry took on the title role in this dramedy as a lawyer who represents the eccentric residents of a small U.K. town. The series ran for three seasons, from 2007-2009, with the first available now on Acorn, and the next two rolling out March 21 and 28, respectively. Note: This show is not to be confused with DirecTV’s mixed-martial arts drama Kingdom, so don’t be disappointed if you don’t see any shirtless Jonas brothers.
AMERICAN CRIME: SEASON 2 (Hulu)
Sadly overshadowed by the similarly titled The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, ABC’s powerful dramatic anthology recently wrapped its second season with many of its Season 1 stars (Felicity Huffman, Timothy Hutton, Regina King, Elvis Nolasco) taking on new roles. This installment conerns an alleged sexual assault at an Indianapolis private school and examines issues of race, class, gender and sexuality with supreme sensitivity. The standouts in the cast are young actors Connor Jessup (Falling Skies) and Joey Pollari as the students involved in the incident. Given its mediocre ratings — and the depature of its champion, network president Paul Lee — American Crime may not return for Season 3, but creator John Ridley and his entire ensemble can be proud of the work they’ve done, which will no doubt be discovered by streaming viewers for years to come.
Currently Senior Articles Editor for Closer Weekly, Bruce Fretts has written for The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, TV Guide, Emmy Magazine, Fast Company, and Vulture. You can follow him on Twitter @brucefretts.