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!
THE GET DOWN (Netflix)
In 1977, the Bronx was burning, and this sprawling musical drama from director Baz Luhrmann (Moulin Rouge) plays like a mashup of Season 4 of The Wire and Summer of Sam as it tracks a quartet of teenage boys (including Jaden Smith, Will’s son) coming of age amid the ruins. The most recognizbale faces in the teeming ensemble are Jimmy Smits as Francisco “Papa Fuerte” Cruz, a South Bronx pol with grand visions for revitalizing the neighborhood and Breaking Bad’s Giancarlo Esposito as his brother, a Pentacostal preacher determined to ensure that his musically talented teenage daughter (Herizen F. Guardiola) keeps the faith. The soundtrack — which captures NYC at the crossroads of disco, rap and punk — is guaranteed not to get you down.
TRIUMPH’S SUMMER ELECTION SPECIAL 2016 (Hulu)
The presidential campaign between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton is perfect… for Triumph the Insult Comic Dog to poop on! Conan O'Brien’s favorite foul-mouthed canine puppet (played by Robert Smigel) crashes the Republican and Democratic conventions, as well as rallies, focus groups and live news broadcasts. Watch for cameos by CNN’s Jake Tapper and Wolf Blitzer and deposed Democratic National Committee leader Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Oh wait, that’s just Triumph in a wig.
DAVID CROSS: MAKING AMERICA GREAT AGAIN! (Netflix)
If you haven’t gotten your fill of biting political humor from Triumph, check out this stand-up special from Arrested Development vet Cross. Not that he’d want to be identified that way — "Oh, hey, Tobias is in town. I didn’t know he told jokes,“ he mocks himself and his Austin, Tex. audience. No cow is sacred as Cross satirically slaughters Trump supporters, NRA members and politically correct liberals alike. No wonder some audience members walk out. He’s not afraid to grate on America again.
POLICE ACADEMY 1-7 (Crackle)
Should you be seeking laughs that won’t make you think, look no further than the seven-film Police Academy series, now available in its entirety on Crackle. Starting with 1984’s original — which introduced Steve Guttenberg, Kim Cattrall & Co. — and culminating with 1994’s Mission to Moscow, the franchise hit its peak, if you ask me, with 1987’s Police Academy 4: Citizens on Patrol, featuring the Gute’s final appearance as officer Carey Mahoney, plus a pre-Basic Instinct Sharon Stone, the great Bobcat Goldthwait, David Spade (as a skateboarding juvenile delinquent) and underrated boxer-turned-actor Randall "Tex” Cobb. No word yet on if any will be available for Key & Peele’s long-in-development Police Academy reboot.
THE WINE SHOW (Hulu)
You might not know from their Yank accents on The Americans and The Good Wife, but Matthew Rhys and Matthew Goode both hail from the U.K., and they let their natural brogues — as well as a whole lot of wine — flow in this 13-episode docu-series from Britain’s ITV. Follow these two actors around the world as they sample all manners of the grape. We’ll drink to that!
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.