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!
PATTON OSWALT: TALKING FOR CLAPPING (Netflix)
The gifted stand-up/actor — who tragically lost his wife, Michelle McNamara, the same day this special was released — displays his dazzling wit in this hour-plus set filmed at the Fillmore in San Francisco. His topics are typically diverse: gay proms, Star Wars vs. My Little Pony, and birthday clowns, just to name a few. And lazy members of the PC police could learn a lot from his epic defense of RuPaul (“She laid down on the barbed wire of discrimination in the ’70s and ’80s so this generation could run across her back and yell at her for saying ‘tranny?’").
KONG: KING OF THE APES (Netflix)
He’s not a monster, he’s just misunderstood. The marauding monkey from the movies gets reinvented for this animated series set in 2050. Kong’s on the run after escaping from Alcatraz Island. Turns out he was set up by a brilliant supervillain who intends to unleash a barrage of giant mechanical dinosaurs. Who can stop them? Why, Kong, of course! All 13 episodes are now available on Netflix, so it’s the perfect time to go ape.
PENNY DREADFUL: SEASON 3 (Hulu)
The Showtime shocker doesn’t return until May 1, but you can catch the first episode of Season 3 on Hulu now with a Showtime add-on to your subscription. Patti LuPone, who guest-starred last season as the Cut-Wife, joins the cast in a new role as a therapist treating the institutionalized Vanessa (Eva Green), and Dr. Jekyll (Shazad Latif) supplements the show’s roster of spooky 19th century literary characters that already includes the Frankenstein monster, Dorian Gray, and more. Still no sign of Sweeney Todd yet, but with LuPone around full-time, one never knows.
DEADBEAT: SEASON 3 (Hulu)
It’s more supernatural action, but with way more jokes than Penny Dreadful. Reaper’s Tyler Labine returns for his third go-round as Kevin “Pac” Pacaliouglu, a Brooklyn hipster who can see dead people. This time, he joins forces with Clyde Shapiro (Harold & Kumar’s Kal Penn, an old hand at stoner humor), a pot-repeneur who becomes his roommate and ghostbusting comrade. All 13 episodes are now available; Hulu released them on 4/20, natch.
MURDOCH MYSTERIES: SEASON 9 (Acorn TV)
The Canadian crime drama — which airs under the title The Artful Detective on the cable network Ovation — follows 1890’s Toronto cop William Murdoch (Yannick Bisson) as he uses rudimentary forensic technology to catch evildoers. The second episode of the ninth season features a guest shot by William Shatner as Mark Twain, who’s targeted for murder while on a speaking tour of the Great White North. Also watch for Ed Asner as a would-be Santa Claus in episode 10, “A Merry Murdoch Christmas.” And here’s a real gift to Murdoch fans: The show has been renewed for a tenth season.
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.