Our Picks for the 10 Best Hulu Original Series
In the world of streaming services, there are three major players: Hulu, Neflix, and Amazon Prime. Of those three, Hulu is far behind in terms of original programming even though it’s been around for over eight years. But that’s because Hulu has an advantage that neither Netflix nor Amazon Prime can currently match: access to recent programming from Fox, NBC, The CW, and ABC. Hulu also has a deep bench of classic TV series and movies, as well as exclusive streaming rights to other popular shows like South Park.
However, times are changing at Hulu. The recently-concluded 11.22.63 marked the beginning of a more aggressive push into original programming. Netflix and Amazon Prime may currently be in the lead, but this isn’t a fight that Hulu is going to sit out. The library of Hulu originals is still pretty thin at the moment, but upcoming shows include Chance, Crow’s Blood, Shut Eye, Citizen, The Handmaid’s Tale, and Dimension 404.
If you’re looking to enjoy some Hulu originals sooner rather than later, ComingSoon.net has put together a list of the 10 best Hulu original series that you can watch right now.
Best Hulu Original Series: 11.22.63
11.22.63 was easily Hulu’s most ambitious show to date. It was an eight-episode adaptation of Stephen King’s novel of the same name that starred James Franco as Jake Epping, a man who discovers a way to travel back in time and potentially change history by saving the life of President John Kennedy.
There had been previous attempts to make 11.22.63 into a movie, but it seemed to be better suited as a miniseries. It may also serve as the blueprint for future TV projects from Hulu.
Best Hulu Original Series: The Awesomes
The Awesomes was one of Hulu’s first attempts at an animated series, and it became one of the longest-running original shows on the service. It’s a superhero parody that actually had character development and story arcs over the course of three seasons. The Awesomes also had a legitimately impressive voice cast that included Seth Meyers, Taran Killam, Rashida Jones, Bill Hader, Josh Meyers, Kenan Thompson, Bobby Lee, and Paula Pell.
Best Hulu Original Series: Battleground
Battleground has often been overlooked despite being Hulu’s first original scripted show. It was a mockumentary about a political campaign in Wisconsin; with Jay Hayden, Teri Reeves, Jack DeSena, Ben Samuel, Lindsey Payne, Jordan T. Maxwell, and Alison Haislip as the primary cast members.
The series was created by J.D. Walsh and only lasted a single season on Hulu, which may be why it doesn’t have a very big profile. However, it’s worth a watch and it has an important place in the history of Hulu.
Best Hulu Original Series: Casual
Casual is one of the flagship shows of Hulu’s new era original programming. It debuted last year to critical raves, and the second season premiered earlier this month. Casual is a refreshingly frank comedy about modern dating starring Michaela Watkins as Valerie, Tommy Dewey as Valerie’s roommate and brother, Alex; with Tara Lynne Barr as Valerie’s daughter, Laura. It’s the kind of show that doesn’t have much of an audience on network TV, but it seems to be right at home on Hulu.
Best Hulu Original Series: Deadbeat
Deadbeat is quite dead. Hulu canceled the series shortly after the third season debuted earlier this year. But this was one of the best shows that Hulu ever produced, in part because it never took itself too seriously. Tyler Labine played a very lazy supernatural medium named Kevin Pacalioglu, who was reluctantly compelled to help ghosts move on to the next life. Think of it as The Ghost Whisperer for stoners, if that show had been a comedy.
Best Hulu Original Series: Difficult People
Difficult People is another one of Hulu’s more recent comedy original series, and another critical favorite. The series follows two comedians: Julie Kessler (Julie Klausner) and Billy Epstein (Billy Eichner) who are horrible, horrible people who just happen to only get along with each other. It’s actually the fact that Julie and Billy are incredible jerks that makes Difficult People so much fun to watch. On a network show, they would have been retooled into “likable” characters. But on this series, they can bask in their negative qualities while occasionally displaying deeper emotions.
Best Hulu Original Series: The Mindy Project
The Mindy Project struggled to survive on FOX for three seasons before it was cancelled. But Hulu stepped in and renewed it for two additional seasons with 42 new episodes spread across two years. The series stars Mindy Kaling as a gynecologist who struggles to balance her personal and professional life. With this show, Hulu moved away from the binge model, and began releasing new episodes of The Mindy Project on a weekly basis.
Best Hulu Original Series: The Path
With 11.22.63 having reached its natural end, The Path is now Hulu’s flagship drama series. It’s already been renewed for a second season, and it stars Aaron Paul, Michelle Monaghan, and Hugh Dancy as members of a very cult-like religion known as Meyerism. Paul’s character is Eddie Lane, a man who has a crisis of faith about the tenants of his belief system, while Monaghan’s character, Sarah has her own faith tested by her husband, Eddie and Cal (Dancy), the man attempting to seize control of Meyerism for his own purposes.
Best Hulu Original Series: Quick Draw
Quick Draw was an original program that was very much a relic of Hulu’s more experimental and low-budget past. The series was semi-improvised comedy western starring John Lehr as John Henry Hoyle, the new sheriff of Great Bend, Kansas. Nick Brown costarred as Deputy Eli Brocias, with Allison Dunbar as Honey Shaw, Alexia Dox as Pearl Starr, Bob Clendenin as Vernon Shank, and Brian O’Connor as Cole Younger.
Although Quick Draw received a two-season order from Hulu, it never quite found an audience. But it’s rare mashup of genres that deserves a second glance.
Best Hulu Original Series: Resident Advisors
Resident Advisors premiered on Hulu last year and it seemed to pick up the torch from the classic cancelled sitcom, Undeclared, as it followed the misadventures of Resident Advisors at a small college. Former Veronica Mars co-star Ryan Hansen headlined the cast as Doug, an RA in his 30s who seems to be destined to stay in college as long as possible.
It’s not clear if Resident Advisors will be back for another season, but all seven episodes from the first season are still on Hulu.