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The best Amazon Prime Series (September 2020): 26 great Prime TV shows to stream

UPDATED: The best shows on Amazon Prime to watch.

The best Amazon Prime Series (September 2020): 26 great Prime TV shows to stream
Marc Chacksfield
04 September 2020

This best Amazon Prime series list is a snapshot of what is available on Prime right now. Choosing favourites has been tough but the following shows are gilded in our eyes - gold standard television that needs to be binge-watched without delay.

The following shows prove that an Amazon Prime subscription is really worth the expense. It gets you a lot more than a fast delivery service, but arguably the best benefit of your Prime subscription is access to Prime Video. We would get one just to access the great library of movies and TV shows.

UPDATE: The Boys: S2 is now streaming on Prime Video, with three episodes available. It's currently third in this best Amazon Prime Series list and it's a fantastic watch, as long as you aren't easily offended. It's the prefect antidote to the moral Marvel universe and is fantastic, if violent, fun.

In the following best Amazon Prime shows guide, we've picked our favourites and now it’s your job to rank them. If there is a particular Amazon Prime show you are fond of, give it an upvote. If we’ve chosen something you hate, then click the downvote button.

Oh, and if we’ve somehow forgotten something you loved, let us know below and we’ll make sure it’s added.

If you are looking at what the rival has to offer, then head to our best Netflix shows guide.

These are the best movies on Prime Video, ranked

Best Amazon Prime Series

The beauty of Amazon Prime - and Netflix - is that these platforms breathe life into previously dead shows, like The Expanse. It's a show about what happens when humans colonise the solar system (spoiler: it ain’t great). Syfy cancelled it after three seasons but Amazon gave The Expanse a new home. Why? Well, for one thing CEO Jeff Bezos is a big fan. We’re glad he did - this is stunning sci-fi and universe-building at its best. According to early reviews, the highly-anticipated fourth season may be even better than the first three.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

2. Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

The Jack Ryan series of movies, those starring Harrison Ford at least, were a lot of fun. While a prequel movie with Chris Pine stumbled, this alternate TV take is well worth a watch. John Krasinski is effortless as Ryan, a CIA analyst forced into the field. As is The Wire’s Wendell Pierce as Jack Greer, Ryan’s mentor - a role that once belonged to James Earl Jones. Big shoes to fill, then, but he manages it. It’s a little Mission: Impossible lite in places but well worth a watch, especially in 4K.

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The Boys is one of the most original takes on the superhero genre we have seen. The concept (based on Garth Ennis' great comic) is that the world is filled with superheroes but they are all, well, dicks. Underneath their shiny, hero image they actually abuse their power and cause havoc in the world. The good news is that there's a team of anti-heroes that can put a stop to them, lead by Karl Urban. This is one gory, violent, hilarious show that's not for the faint hearted.

The second season is now streaming, with new episodes landing weekly.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

4. The Marvelous Miss Maisel

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

It was about time a show gave Rachel Brosnahan a chance to shine. After bit parts in movies and a stint on House of Cards, The Marvelous Miss Maisel sees her in fantastic form as a 1950s housewife who decides one day to become a stand-up comic. There’s a lot to love about the show, but Brosnahan’s main performance as ‘Midge’ Maisel steals it - her transformation when she eventually gets on the stage is brilliant to watch.

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On the face of it, Vikings seems a little one dimensional: a whole show based on the pillaging, conquering and brutal world of Viking Ragnar Lothbrok. But this is definitely not Game of Thrones on a budget. The character development over the first three seasons is beautifully handled, and Vikings tells what is a simple story really well.

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It seems a little trite to heap more praise on a show that it is pretty much universally loved but the thing is (looks to camera, with a wry smile), they’re right. Phoebe Waller-Bridge's adaptation of her own one-woman stage show manages to be stunningly crass, utterly hilarious and tear-inducing all at the same time. Yes, Waller-Bridges is perfect as Fleabag but the rest of the cast are just as good, characters rounded with surgical precision.

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The Americans is stunning TV. It would be in everyone’s top 10 list, if they had only seen it. Set around the Cold War, the show follows a seemingly normal apple pie-loving American couple who turn out to be Russian spies. Both Keri Russell and Matthew Rhys are sublime as the spy duo, while the show slowly ratchets up the tension season after season.

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Bosch is a brilliant, easy watch, and is now in its fifth season. It stars Titus Welliver as the titular Harry Bosch, whose acting raises this show above your average police procedural. As does the writing. Overseen by Eric Overmyer, whose credits include The Wire, Treme and Boardwalk Empire, this is a top-quality show.

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Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett’s fantastic book Good Omens gets the TV treatment, thanks to a joint production between the BBC and Amazon Studios. The result is a superb six-part series with one of the best acting pairing seen on TV in recent years. David Tennant and Michael Sheen shine as angels Aziraphale and Crowley, and their job is to stave off the impending apocalypse. Fans of Gaiman will love Good Omens. He was deeply involved, as Terry Pratchett asked Gaiman to write the TV show's script before he passed away. A request we are very glad was fulfilled.

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Sam Esmail created something special in Mr Robot. Its tale of hackers looking to overturn the might of corporate America has never been so pertinent. It doesn’t help, either, that he cast Oscar-winner Rami Malek in the role of Elliot, an anti-social hacker with his fair share of tics. The supporting cast are great too. BD Wong and Christian Slater are brilliant in their roles.

The fourth season of Mr Robot is now here and it picks up where the last season left off and is as hard-hitting and edge-of-your-seat tense as it's always been. Some critics have slammed the idea of a fourth season, but we think there's still a lot of story to tell here and can't wait to see where series creator Sam Esmail takes it.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

11. Star Trek: Picard

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

Many Star Trek fans approached Picard with caution, after Discovery failed to satisfy many long-term Trekkers. But Patrick Stewart's return to the universe seems, so far, to be a real success. The series takes a slower approach to storytelling, with numerous story threads set to unravel slowly over the first season's 10-episode arc.

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Carnival Row is one of our hottest new picks on Amazon Prime this Autumn. It's a dark fantasy story with some crime thrown in. It follows the story of a faerie refugee (played by Cara Delevingne) and an investigator (played by Orlando Bloom) whose paths cross during the hunt for a serial killer. It's already proved to be such a hit that it's been renewed for a second season.

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Another stunning piece of television that simply needs to be watched by all. We never thought a drama about rival biker gangs could be anything but schlocky but Sons of Anarchy plays out like a Shakespearean tragedy. Charlie Hunnam is fantastic as Jax, who tries to change his gang for the better.

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When Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen announced they were creating a Preacher show, we thought they would turn Garth Ennis’s superb graphic novel into some sort of stoner comedy. How wrong we were. Preacher has its fair share of mayhem, bloody violence and acerbic comedy, but it also has a strong message about religion and asks some serious questions about, and to, god.

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If you're a fan of Neil Gaiman's work, you're in for a real treat with an Amazon Prime subscription. Now not only can you enjoy American Gods, but Good Omens too. Both TV shows make our list because they're prime examples of deliciously addictive storytelling, rich characters and mind-bending fantasy. Neil Gaiman played a bigger part in the development of Good Omens, but that doesn't mean American Gods isn't a dark and binge-worthy series with some trulyexcellent performances.

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Over six seasons Justified proved itself to be one of the best shows of all time. This is all down to its two sparring partners: Raylan Givens, a brilliant Timothy Olyphant, and Boyd Crowder, played by the fantastic Walter Goggins. The show centres on Givens coming back to his home town as a deputy - what ensues is just brilliant.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

17. The Man in the High Castle

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

The Man in the High Castle was one of the first Prime Video Originals and it ran for four seasons, concluding at the end of 2019. It's a fantastic-looking show that is based on Philip K. Dick's novel where in a parallel universe the Nazis won and the changes this makes to the world. By the end of the show it deviates from the book but it's well worth going the distance.

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Amazon announced it has cancelled The Tick, and that can only be because Amazon doesn’t know how to have fun. It is a superhero parody with heart, and a brilliant cast. ‎Peter Serafinowicz is superb as the titular Tick, the superhero without superpowers, playing it without any knowing wink that he is in on the joke. And that’s the brilliance of the show, which really stepped up in the second season. Unfortunately, Season 2 will now be its last, unless it can find another home - which fans are trying to make happen with the #SaveTheTick hashtag

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Best Amazon Prime Series

19. Tales From The Loop

Stream Now (Amazon Prime Video)

It's pretty rare that a show has been inspired by something other than a book, but this one is based on the paintings of Simon Stålenhag. It's a great premise - each painting is like a jumping off point for an episode, a glimpse into a bigger narrative. It's a lot of fun - a time-travelling series that has hints of Twin Peaks and its big streaming rival's hit show Stranger Things.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

20. Little Fires Everywhere

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

The sumptuous show stars Reece Witherspoon as a housewife in the 90s who has swapped her career as a journalist. On the surface everything looks perfect but the addition of a new mother and daughter to the neighbourhood shifts this narrative. Witherspoon is fantastic, as is Kerry Washington and Joshua Jackson. This feels like a show that will end after the first season and it's all the better for it

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Best Amazon Prime Series

21. Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

Six seasons of Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. are available to watch on Prime Video and it's a huge amount of fun. While it takes a few seasons to find its feet, the tale of the those behind the bigger superheroes is well worth a watch. The seventh and final season is currently airing elsewhere.

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Those craving a Twin Peaks sized hole will love Homecoming. Now in its second season (with singer Janelle Monáe taking over from Julia Roberts in the first season). The show centres on the Geist Group, a wellness company that has rather unorthodox methods of making people better. And, as you can imagine, all is not what it seems.

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There is a lot of fun to be had in this James Bond-lite tale of a teenager who joins MI6. There are some 14 novels to take material from and this series is focused on the second book - it's a lot of fun, with star turns from Otto Farrant. It's a little gadget lite compared to the books but there's a huge amount of action and boys' own adventure.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

24. All of Nothing: Tottenham Hotspur

Watch now on Prime Video

Amazon couldn't have chosen a better season to document with its latest iteration of All or Nothing. While the first one was based on Man City and saw them win the title, this one is about Spurs. They didn't win anything this year, but that's not the point: this was a season hit by Covid-19, a season where Mourinho was given the manager's job. In short: it was a season like no other and this is a riveting behind-the-scenes look at everything that went on.

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The 80s is a TV gold mine. Stranger Things used the era of Walkmans and shell suits as a backdrop for some crazy stuff. Red Oaks tempers the craziness but ramps up the warmth and fun, creating a wonderful coming-of-age story that needs to be seen. It is a show that doesn’t shirk big issues, but they are wrapped in a lot of affection for the era and its characters.

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Best Amazon Prime Series

26. Too Old To Die Young

Stream now (Amazon Prime Video)

Known more for his ultraviolent movies, such as Drive and Only God Forgives, his foray into television is superb as it is brutal. Although Refn prefers to think of Too Old To Die Young as an extended movie, it's been broken down into 12 manageable 'episodes', following a cop played by Miles Teller who goes on something of a revenge spree, ridding the world of some very unsavoury characters. This is uncompromising, unflinching entertainment - and all the better for it.

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