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Randy Schiff


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If you seek supremely silly, but intellectually stimulating television, then ascend to the heavens of “The Good Place.” Featuring Kristen Bell’s hilarious star performance and a refreshing focus on moral philosophy, “The Good Place” offers truly intelligent comedy. Title: "The Good Place" Year it began: 2016 Where it can be seen: NBC, Netflix Who’s in it: Krist…

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If you seek absorbing, cerebral drama, then take a trip through the shadowy forest to binge-watch Dark. A German-language Netflix original, "Dark" features gorgeous cinematography and a perfectly paced, complex story that mixes horror with science fiction. Title: "Dark" Year it began: 2017 Where it can be seen: Netflix Who’s in it: Louis Hoffmann, Maja Schöne, …

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If you seek gripping science fiction about a team of agents literally leading double lives, then binge-watch "Travelers." The show makes you want to join the journey of its intense and likable agents, who protect future earth while following difficult protocols designed to limit their impact. Title: "Travelers" Year it began: 2016 Where it can be seen: Netflix …

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Do you like vampire, werewolf, and ghost stories, but can’t decide which to watch? Have no fear: you’ll find all three binge-watching “Being Human,” a show about young and lively monsters struggling against their darker selves. Title: “Being Human” Year it began: 2011 Where it can be seen: Amazon; Itunes; Netflix Who’s in it: Sam Witwer; Meaghan Rath; Sam Hunti…

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First-rate crime drama. Cerebral scripts. A brooding atmosphere. True Detective has all that and features gripping investigations in Louisiana and California; it will move to the Ozarks in its recently green-lit third season. Title: True Detective Year it began: 2014 Where it can be seen: HBO; Amazon; DVD Who’s in it: Matthew McConaughey; Woody Harrelson; Tory …

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"The Crown" is a sumptuously filmed historical period drama that focuses on the United Kingdom’s royal family. It brings us inside the halls of palaces and prime ministers’ chambers and offers an absorbing study of the modern British monarchy. Title: "The Crown" Year it began: 2016 Where it can be seen: Netflix Who’s in it: Claire Foy, Matt Smith, Vanessa Kir…

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If you want wildly inventive comedy with a sharp satirical edge, then binge-watch “Community.” Featuring a first-rate cast and top-shelf scripts, Dan Harmon’s “Community” offers both laughter and social commentary as it parodies pop-culture conventions. Title: "Community" Year it began: 2009 Where it can be seen: NBC, Hulu, Amazon Who’s in it: Joel McHale, Gill…

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Travel back to early 1980s Dallas with “Halt and Catch Fire.” The show offers a fascinating portrait of the intense convergence of computer and business dreams. Title: Halt and Catch Fire Year it began: 2014 Where it can be seen: AMC; Netflix; Amazon Who’s in it: Lee Pace; Scoot McNairy; Mackenzie Davis; Kerry Bishé; Toby Huss; Aleksa Palladino Typical episo…

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If you seek cerebral and unsettling mystery, travel to provincial New Zealand to binge-watch Top of the Lake. After its sublime 2013 season, Top of the Lake returned for a second season in 2017. Title: Top of the Lake Year it began: 2013 Where it can be seen: BBC; Sundance; Amazon Who’s in it: Elisabeth Moss; Peter Mullan; Holly Hunter; Jacqueline Joe; David We…

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If you seek high-quality comedy with the cinematic power of drama, then binge-watch “Atlanta.” Anchored by the bold vision of creator, co-writer and star Donald Glover, “Atlanta” offers uniquely riveting television. Title: Atlanta Year it began: 2016 Where it can be seen: FX; Amazon; Hulu Who’s in it: Donald Glover; Brian Tyree Henry; Zazie Beetz; Keith Stanfie…

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If you have questions about the universe, then satisfy your curiosity by binge-watching Through the Wormhole. With excellent visuals and interviews, and with Morgan Freeman as your guide, Through the Wormhole offers lively scientific programming. Title: Through the Wormhole Year it began: 2010 Where it can be seen: Science Channel; Amazon; Hulu Who’s in it: Mor…

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If you love slapstick and seek surreal sitcom fun, then binge-watch Get a Life. Starring Chris Elliott as a psychotic paperboy, Get a Life reaches comic heights—or should I say depths?—that few shows have attained. Title: Get a Life Year it began: 1990 Where it can be seen: Amazon; DVD Who’s in it: Chris Elliott; Robin Riker; Bob Elliott; Elinor Donoghue; Sam R…

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If you are looking for a thrilling law-enforcement show that features paranormal phenomena, shadowy conspiracies, and lots of scientific investigation, then get ready to binge-watch Fringe. It really is out of this world. Title: Fringe Year it began: 2008 Where it can be seen: Fox; Amazon Who’s in it: Anna Torv; John Noble; Joshua Jackson; Lance Reddick; Jasika…

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FICTION Origin By Dan Brown Doubleday 456 pages. $29.95 Exploring the competitive tensions between religion and science, Dan Brown’s “Origin” is a mystery that will appeal to readers looking for thoughtfulness and thrills. Brown tells the tale of Edmond Kirsch, a brash computer scientist and atheist activist who thinks his recent discovery about humanity’s o…

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If you yearn to see sumptuous sites while learning about ancient civilizations, then join Bettany Hughes as she explores the “Ancient World.” Hughes’ intelligence and enthusiasm enliven these beautifully filmed documentaries. Title: “The Ancient World with Bettany Hughes” Year it began: 2002 Where it can be seen: Amazon; Channel4.com; DVD Who’s in it: Bettany H…