The 10 best international series on Showmax this May.
RUN S1 | First on Showmax | New episodes every Monday
17 years ago, college sweethearts Ruby and Billy made a pact: if either of them ever texted the word "RUN" and the other replied with the same, they would drop everything, board the first train after 5pm out of Grand Central Station, and travel across America together. But they're about to discover that the reality of taking that leap may not be quite how they pictured it...
Emmy winner and Golden Globe nominee Merritt Wever from Unbelievable, Godless and Nurse Jackie stars as Ruby, opposite Berlin Shooting Star winner Domhnall Gleeson from Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Ex Machina as Billy. The cast also includes Emmy and Golden Globe winner, Phoebe Waller-Bridge (Fleabag), who's also executive producer; Golden Globe nominee Archie Panjabi (HBO's upcoming I Know This Much Is True, The Good Wife); Screen Actors Guild nominee Rich Sommer (Mad Men, Glow); and Sundance jury prize winner Tamara Podemski (Coroner).
From HBO and the team behind Fleabag, Run has an 84% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with NPR hailing the romcom thriller as "the best new show of 2020."
RICK AND MORTY S4 | First on Showmax | New episodes every Monday
Rick Sanchez is a sociopathic genius scientist who lives with his daughter Beth's family, constantly bringing her, his son-in-law Jerry, granddaughter Summer, and inherently timid grandson Morty on insanely dangerous adventures across the universe.
Adult Swim's half-hour animated comedy is the highest-rated animated series of all time on IMDb, with a 9.2/10 rating, and has won an Emmy, two Annie Awards and a Critics Choice Award, among other honours. Season 4 has a 100% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, which praises the season as "both an exciting progression and a delightful return to form that proves more than worth the two-year wait."
THE OUTSIDER S1 | New episodes 2330 every Thursday | Same day as M-Net
Police detective Ralph Anderson (Golden Globe nominee Ben Mendelsohn from Bloodline and Rogue One) is still grieving the death of his own son when the mutilated body of 11-year-old Frankie Peterson is found in the Georgia woods. The mysterious circumstances surrounding the horrifying crime lead Ralph to bring in unorthodox private investigator Holly Gibney (Cynthia Erivo, nominated for two Oscars and two Golden Globes this year for Harriet) to help explain the unexplainable.
The cast also includes Golden Globe winner Jason Bateman (Ozark), Emmy nominee Bill Camp (Joker, The Night Of), Oscar nominee Mare Winningham (The Affair, American Horror Story), BAFTA winner Paddy Considine (In America), Critics Choice nominee Julianne Nicholson (Masters of Sex, I, Tonya), and Screen Actors Guild nominee Yul Vázquez (Russian Doll).
This hit HBO miniseries is based on the best-selling novel by Stephen King, topped IMDb's Most Popular Show list earlier this year, and has an 82% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Creator Richard Price was behind the Emmy-winning The Night Of and the show's directors include Bateman, who won an Emmy for directing Ozark, and Andrew Bernstein, who won a Directors Guild of America award for The West Wing.
INSECURE S4 | New episodes 22:30 every Monday | Same day as 1Magic
Created by A Black Lady Sketch Show exec producer Issa Rae and Black-ish exec producer Larry Wilmore, Insecure centres on friends Issa (Rae in a Golden Globe, Emmy and Critics Choice nominated performance) and Molly (Black Reel awards nominee Yvonne Orji). The show has a 95% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics consensus hails Insecure as "an insightful, raunchy, and hilarious journey through the life of a twentysomething black woman that cuts through stereotypes with sharp wit and an effusive spirit."
As The Peabody Awards put it, "Rae delivers a ground-breaking series that captures the lives of everyday young black people in Los Angeles with a fresh and authentic take. Breaking away from tired and familiar representations of 'diversity' on television, this series offers a fun and intimate portrayal of work, relationships, and the ordinary experiences of the two young black women at its center."
Insecure was named TV Program of the Year at the 2018 American Film Institute Awards and was also nominated for two Emmys for cinematography and for Show of the Year at the MTV Movie and TV Awards.
WESTWORLD S3 | Binge now
In April, HBO announced they'd renewed Westworld for a fourth season – a no-brainer since the sci-fi-drama topped IMDB's Most Popular Show list earlier this year.
Westworld is a dark wild west odyssey about the dawn of artificial consciousness and the birth of a new form of life on Earth. It's named after an exclusive theme park where those who can afford a ticket can live without limits, where lifelike robots – 'hosts' - indulge every human appetite, no matter how noble or depraved. But, as Season 3 starts, the hosts have escaped, and have plans of their own...
Season three saw the return of Golden Globe nominees Evan Rachel Wood (Dolores) and Thandie Newton (Maeve), Golden Globe winner Jeffrey Wright (Bernard/Arnold), People's Choice nominee Tessa Thompson (Charlotte), Screen Actors Guild nominees Luke Hemsworth (Ashley) and Rodrigo Santoro (Hector), and Oscar nominee Ed Harris as The Man in Black, alongside new faces like Golden Globe nominee Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad), César Award winner Vincent Cassel (Ocean's Twelve, Black Swan), Emmy winner Lena Waithe (Ready Player One), Tommy Flanagan (Sons of Anarchy) and Grammy winner Kid Cudi.
Westworld has won seven Emmys and been nominated for four Golden Globes, among other accolades. Season 3 has an 81% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics consensus says, "Westworld succeeds in rebooting itself by broadening its scope beyond the titular amusement park while tightening its storytelling clarity."
I'M SORRY S2 | First on Showmax | Binge now
Comedy writer, wife, and mom Andrea is back with a new season of zero-filter, acid-sharp and usually totally inappropriate humour, putting her foot in it in cringeworthy everyday situations that are at once laugh-out-loud funny and bitingly true.
The series is inspired by the life of creator and star Andrea Savage (Veep, Step Brothers, Episodes). Tom Everett Scott (13 Reasons Why) plays Andrea's husband Mike, while Golden Globe winner Kathy Baker (Picket Fences, Edward Scissorhands), Golden Globe nominee Allison Tolman (Emergence, Fargo), Jason Mantzoukas (Brooklyn Nine-Nine, The Good Place), and Screen Actors Guild nominee Judy Greer (Arrested Development, Two and a Half Men) co-star.
I'm Sorry has an 81% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes and was recently renewed for a third season. Los Angeles Times calls it "funny and grounded", saying, "This is a show about what happens when the compulsively comic mind meets the casually funny (or humourless) one, and what can seem the astonishing willingness of the professional comedian to violate taste and decorum."
THE L-WORD: GENERATION Q | First on Showmax | Binge now
In this sequel to the ground-breaking, Emmy-nominated 2004-2009 series, Golden Globe nominee Jennifer Beals (Flashdance), Kate Moennig (Ray Donovan, Grown-ish) and Leisha Hailey (CSI) reprise their original roles alongside a new generation of diverse, self-possessed LGBTQIA+ characters as they take on love, heartbreak, sex, setbacks and success in L.A.
Generation Q was up for a 2020 Queerty for Best TV Series and is nominated for a 2020 GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Drama Series. The show has a 81% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics consensus says Generation Q "has style and charm to spare and announces a new phase for The L Word that will please new and old fans alike."
THE MAGICIANS S5 | First on Showmax | Binge now
Based on the bestselling novels by Lev Grossman - at least until Season 3 - The Magicians follows a group of New York magic students who discover a fantasy world that threatens our own.
In the fifth and final season, not only is magic back, but now there is way too much of it. Julia (Stella Maeve), Alice (Olivia Taylor Dudley), Eliot (Hale Appleman), Margo (Summer Bishil), Penny (Arjun Gupta) and the rest of the gang are coping with – spoiler alert – Quentin's tragic death while fighting to prevent the literal end of the world.
All four previous seasons of The Magicians have been nominated for Best Fantasy TV Series by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films. Season 5 has a 100% critics rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with TV Fanatic calling it "without a doubt a satisfying conclusion to an amazing five-year series."
THE PLOT AGAINST AMERICA S1 | Mondays at 23:30 from 11 May | Same day as M-Net
From the award-winning creators of The Wire, David Simon and Ed Burns, comes The Plot Against America, an alternate history story in which Franklin D Roosevelt loses the U.S. presidential election of 1940 to Nazi sympathiser Charles Lindbergh. What follows is the terrifying and tension-building tale of the country's turn to fascism, told through the eyes of a working-class Jewish family in New Jersey in the build-up to World War 2.
Starring Emmy nominee Zoe Kazan (The Big Sick, Olive Kitteridge), Oscar nominee Winona Ryder (Stranger Things), Golden Globe nominee John Turturro (The Night Of) and Morgan Spector (Homeland, Boardwalk Empire), The Plot Against America is based on the acclaimed novel by Pulitzer Prize winner Philip Roth.
The Plot Against America has an 87% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, where the critics' consensus reads: "A cautionary tale that hits close to home, The Plot Against America's handsomely realized revisionist history is disturbingly relevant, making it difficult, but essential viewing."
DEADLY CLASS S1 | First on Showmax | Binge from 11 May
Marcus is a disillusioned teen recruited into King's Dominion - an exclusive private school with a focus on special skills: specifically, the art of assassination and all the skills required to become the young heirs and heiresses of the world's most prominent crime families.
As Marcus, Benjamin Wadsworth (Teen Wolf) was nominated for a 2019 Saturn Award by the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films. The cast also includes Benedict Wong (Doctor Strange, Avengers: Infinity War) as school head, Master Lin; Olivia Cheng (The Stand, Warrior) as the head of the Assassins' Guild, Master Gao; and MTV Movie Awards' Best Kiss winner Lana Condor (To All the Boys I've Loved Before) as Saya Kuroki. Look out for cameos from Ice-T and Henry Rollins.
Based on the comic book series by Rick Remender and Wesley Craig, Deadly Class is executive produced by the Russo Brothers (Avengers: Endgame), with Adam Kane (American Gods, Heroes) and DoP Owen McPolin (Into The Badlands, Vikings) as the main director and DoP respectively.
Deadly Class has a 92% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. "It's very much a story of '80s rebellion, complete with John Hughes archetypes," says AV Club, "but that tale is one that has been influenced by Park Chan-wook and Quentin Tarantino. Sounds fun, right?"