The best Paramount+ shows: from South Park to The Offer
The latest streaming service has some gems you need to know about.
Paramount Plus has quietly become one of the best streaming services for TV, and far more than just an Amazon Prime Video add-on.
It's the home of Star Trek, South Park and critical-hit classics like Oz and Deadwood. There's new and original content too, and the pipeline is not slowing down any time soon. Paramount apparently plans to spend upwards of $6 billion on content in 2024.
UPDATE: Paramount+ is the home of Star Trek. But until now we hadn't included one off the most beloved Star Trek shows of them all, Deep Space Nine. If you think Sisko is about as cracking a captain as Picard, give him an upvote down below. Think more Trek is needed too? Let us know in the suggestions box at the bottom of this article.
The best bit about Paramount+ in the UK is that it has a partnership with Sky. This means if you're currently a Sky Cinema user, using SkyQ or Sky Glass, then you get the Paramount Plus service for free.
How to set up Paramount+ on Sky
That's right, head to the Paramount+ app on your Sky box and choose the Get Paramount+ option. This offers up a QR code and through a few steps, you can access Paramount+ for free once signed in.
Unfortunately, if you are a NOW user (Sky's monthly streaming service), then Paramount+ isn't yet available through this service.
How to get Paramount+ elsewhere
If you aren't a Sky user, then you can still sign up to Paramount+ for £6.99 a month, with 7 days free. There's a Cancel Anytime option too.
This is a fairly cheap monthly fee, especially when compared to Netflix, but it is worth noting that there are far fewer movies and shows on the service. But you do get access to Paramount titles, Showtime titles, some MTV content, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon content.
In fact, there is so much content for kids that there is a dedicated kids' section for the little 'uns.
Is it worth it? Well, that's completely up to your own TV and movie preference - and if you are a huge fan of Star Trek or not - but we've highlighted 20 Paramount+ TV shows that are worth a watch. There's a nice mix of classic shows and new shows that have piqued our interest.
These are the best Paramount+ shows we are watching right now.
Best Paramount + shows
1. YellowstoneWatch now (Paramount+)
Taylor Sheridan is one of the key show makers for Paramount+. He is behind Mayor Of Kingstown but his biggest success is Yellowstone, the five-season behemoth that stars Kevin Costner as a ranch owner who has an onslaught of people who want to take control of what he has amassed. This is a violent, epic modern-day western that will have you hooked from the start.
2. 1883Watch now (Paramount+)
Who's the name on this one? Oh, yes it's Taylor Sheridan again who has created a prequel to his massive western success that is Yellowstone. While Yellowstone follows the modern-day Dutton family as they try and keep hold of their land and riches, 1883 showcases the past relatives as they arrive in Texas, embarking on new lives. Sam Elliott, Tim McGraw and Faith Hill all star.
3. School SpiritsWatch now (Paramount+)
Maddie is a ghost, stuck wandering the halls of her school because it is where she was murdered. She needs to find her killer, with the help of the one living person who can actually see her. This 8-episode series is a teen/YA drama, with some of that Riverdale-grade sheen, but is elevated by the strength of the writing and performances, particularly Peyton List’s Maddie. It has also been renewed for a second season.
4. Mayor of KingstownWatch now (Paramount+)
Mayor of Kingstown is a riveting look at the US' broken prison system. The show focuses on The McLusky family, which includes a former prisoner (Jeremy Renner) his fixer brother dubbed 'the mayor' (Kyle Chandler), cop brother (Taylor Handley) and teacher mother (Dianne Wiest). They all work as peace brokers between the prisoners and police, in an unofficial middle ground. Given that Kingstown is flanked by some seven prisons in a 10-mile radius, they are key to making things work. It's been revealed that there will be a second series.
5. Twin PeaksWatch now (Paramount+)
Both the original two series and the recent-ish return to Twin Peaks are streaming on Paramount+ and they are essential viewing. There is nothing quite like what David Lynch has created here - a surreal whodunit that is at times a police procedural, a coffee advertisement and a waking nightmare all rolled into one. Unmissable stuff.
6. The OfferWatch now (Paramount+)
The standout new show of Paramount+ is definitely The Offer, a fantastic biopic of sorts about the making of The Godfather. The casting of actors and filmmakers we all know very well is spot-on and the series does well to showcase just how such an important movie was made, by indie filmmakers rallying against the big studios that were financing them.
7. DeadwoodWatch now (Paramount+)
The swearist show on TV now has a home on Paramount+ and if you have yet to wallow in the delights of Al Swearengen and co who, after Custer's Last Stand, start to make a name for themselves in the murky town of Deadwood. Mixing real-life incidents with some marvellous plot strands, this is one fun but brutal show.
8. Nurse JackieWatch now (Paramount+)
After co-starring in The Sopranos, the brilliant Edie Falco didn't spend much time relaxing, instead she went headfirst into Nurse Jackie - a fantastic show about a nurse who relies on substance abuse to get her through her shifts. Despite her flaws, you will be captivated by Jackie which make all that happens all the more harder to watch.
9. 1923Watch now (Paramount+)
If you thought Yellowstone fans had had enough of the show, what with five seasons of the original and the 1883 prequel series, then think again. Creator of the Yellowstone-iverse, Taylor Sheridan, has also made a series set somewhere in-between. 1923 is about the Dutton family in 1923 trying to navigate life during the Prohibition and early stages of the Great Depression. There are eight episodes in the first season and it's recently been renewed for a second. Which is hardly surprising considering Sheridan's track record with hit TV shows and with Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren at the helm.
10. YellowjacketsWatch now (Paramount+)
You may have already caught Yellowjackets when it streamed earlier this year but now it has a home on Paramount+. Yellowjackets is a great big mystery, surrounding a plane that crashed with a women's college soccer team on board. The story is about the survivors and the big mystery that surrounds just what happened when they had to survive off of the land after the crash. The cast are superb (both the younger and older actors), while the premise will keep you guessing and then some.
11. South ParkWatch now (Paramount+)
As well as all the seasons of South Park, there are also two Covid-based new movies to watch the gang in. Given this animated comedy has been going for over 25 years now, it's surprising just how funny and fresh the new episodes are.
12. Star Trek: Strange New WorldsWatch now (Paramount+)
The latest Star Trek show will be a joy for old-school Star Trek fans. It feels like the older shows, has a fantastic cast and a storyline that, so far, is riveting. This one follows Captain Pike, Officer Spock and Number One as they traverse space some 10 years before the original Star Trek series.
13. FrasierWatch now (Paramount+)
One of the best sitcom spin-offs of all time, Frasier is a glorious old-school laugh-out-loud affair about psychiatrist Frasier who heads home to Seattle to become a talk-show host. 11 seasons long with nary a dud, this is effortless TV.
14. Star Trek: Deep Space NineWatch now (Paramount+)
Deep Space Nine is one of the most highly regarded Star Trek shows, and it has a different vibe to the rest thanks to its setting: a space station, not a classic space ship. It means more of the drama is domestic, the space station effectively becoming a small town in space. It's typically in competition with the original series and Next Generation for the top spot of the older-era Star Trek shows.
15. Joe PickettWatch now (Paramount+)
A TV show with a rare achievement: a perfect 100% Rotten Tomatoes rating for both of its seasons. Joe Pickett is a game warden in rural Wyoming who finds a murder on his figurative doorstep. Expect lots of twists and turns, glued together by a great performance from lead Michael Dorman. If you have a soft spot for Americana, you should get on with Joe Pickett just fine. There are currently two seasons of the show, each with 10 episodes.
16. Broad CityWatch now (Paramount+)
Broad City may about women living their lives in New York but it is about as far removed from Sex And The City and Girls as you can get. The show's focus is twenty-somethings Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson and the adventures they get up to as their friendship deepens. As funny as it is poignant, with a dollop of toilet humour thrown in for good measure, this one is a gem.
17. OzWatch now (Paramount+)
Oz was a number of things for HBO - including its first one-hour drama - but it will always be remembered for pushing the constraints of cable TV, with its depiction of drug abuse, violence and the prison system. Over 6 series this is a hard watch but also a compelling one, which is based in an experimental wing of a prison that tries new tactics to rehabilitate its inmates. The sheer amount of actors who came out of this show - J. K. Simmons, B.D. Wong, Lance Reddick to name a few - proves the quality of the TV.
18. Rabbit HoleWatch now (Paramount+)
Kiefer Sutherland is back to his classic antics in Rabbit Hole. We’re talking espionage, folks getting framed for murders they didn’t commit, and the threat of a double-cross around every corner. If you’re the kind of person who loves a twisty-turner thriller that does its best to confound your expectations, give Rabbit Hole a watch. It’s an 8-episode season, with a second still up in the air as we write this.
19. Star Trek: The Next GenerationWatch now (Paramount+)
There are a number of Star Trek properties on Paramount+ right now, but the one we went to first was Star Trek: The Next Generation. This is a show that was a turning point for Star Trek - it managed to modernise the franchise, creating new characters that over time became just as likeable as Kirk and co. Brilliant stuff.
20. CalifornicationWatch now (Paramount+)
David Duchovny did well to get rid of his X-Files persona, by playing Hank Moody - a womanising, alcoholic author who is suffering from writers' block. While the show veers off course in its last seasons, it's still a fun watch if you haven't seen it before.
21. HaloWatch now (Paramount+)
We were expecting more from the Halo show. For a start, it doesn't feel much like Halo. However, Pablo Schreiber does make for a decent Master Chief and the CGI and creature designs throughout are superb. It's strange to recommend this show to non Halo fans, but they may get the most out of it - the world-building and sci-fi premise stand strong, and away, from the successful games franchise.