10 Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time, Ranked

Best HBO miniseries of all time, include Chernobyl, The Pacific and Sharp Objects

HBO has really established a reputation for delivering stellar shows to the masses, with Game of Thrones, Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Last of Us being popular examples. However, for all of HBO’s popular dramas and comedies, it has also introduced some strong miniseries.

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These miniseries go for quality over quantity as they tell incredible stories in condensed packages. While their premises can appear to be restrictive, there are many miniseries where the limited episodes actually enhance the audience’s experience. If done right, a few episodes is enough to establish a show’s premise and characters, but without overloading the series with too much information and clutter.

10 Mare Of Easttown Is Made By Its Engaging Cast

Mare of Easttown is an American crime drama that debuted in 2021 with just seven episodes. Mare of Easttown‘s primary selling point is the incredibly talented Kate Winslet as the lead, Detective Mare Sheehan. Mare of Easttown follows Mare as she investigates murder while carrying baggage of her own.

Mare of Easttown has everything a crime drama should have. It masterfully builds tension and suspense but never feels procedural. The show’s incredible performances ultimately help to bring it all together. Mare of Easttown won four awards at the 2021 Primetime Emmys, for Winslet, Julianne Nicholson, and Evan Peters’ performances.

9 Generation Kill Is A Compelling Adaptation Of Evan Wright’s Experience In Iraq

Generation Kill is a seven-part miniseries that aired back in 2008. The show is based on Evan Wright’s book about his experience as a reporter with the Marines in Iraq. The 2003 invasion of Iraq is captured in a new light for all to see, and the results are compelling yet horrifying.

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While Lee Tergesen plays Even Wright, Alexander Skarsgård also stars as Sgt. Brad Colbert. Generation Kill won three awards at the 2009 Primetime Emmys for its visuals and sounds, which really helped to capture the intensity and brutality of war.

8 Watchmen Was A Remixed Sequel To The Comics

The 2019 Watchmen series has largely flown under the radar in terms of long-term recognition, which is surprising considering how it is seen as something of a sequel to the popular Watchmen comics. The series takes place 34 years after the events of the comics, but it tried to be a remix of the initial concepts and ideas.

Watchmen won a staggering 11 Primetime Emmys in 2020, with the likes of Regina King and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II being recognized for their exceptional performances. The show concluded its 9-episode run and was re-categorized as a miniseries when showrunner Damon Lindelof left immediately after, believing that he had finished the story he wanted to tell. Regardless, the 2019 series added to Watchmen‘s storied legacy across various media.

The Pacific is often held in the same regard as Band of Brothers in terms of style and substance. Bruce C. McKenna spearheaded the miniseries, and he was previously one of the main writers on Band of Brothers.

The Pacific follows three Marines, Robert Leckie, Eugene Sledge, and John Basilone, throughout the 1st Marine’s Division’s escapades in the likes of Guadalcanal and Okinawa. The war drama has the intensity of its predecessor, with a new stacked cast telling more of the tragedies and horrors of war.

6 Amy Adams Shines In Sharp Objects

Sharp Objects follows a similar template to Mare of Easttown by focusing on a complex character who’s in the midst of a wider investigation. In Sharp Objects, Amy Adams leads the way as Camille Preaker, a reporter with a traumatic past who returns to her hometown of Wind Gap to investigate the murders of two young girls.

Amy Adams is at her absolute best in Sharp Objects, supported by a similarly stellar performance by Patricia Clarkson, who plays Camille’s mother. Sharp Objects is an 8-episode psychological thriller with plenty of drama and mystery, twists, and turns.

5 The Night Of Is A Gripping Crime Drama With All The Suspense

The Night Of is a thrilling crime drama that stars Riz Ahmed as Nasir Khan, a man who wakes up next to a murdered woman and becomes the prime suspect in a complex investigation. The Night Of has twists and turns throughout the show’s eight episodes, keeping the audience on the edge of their collective seat.

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The Night Of won five Primetime Emmy Awards in 2017 for not only Riz Ahmed’s performance, but also for the stellar cinematography, sound, and visual design. The Night Of really is the perfect miniseries for those wanting mystery and suspense inside a gruesome murder investigation.

4 I May Destroy You Is The British Comedy-Drama At Its Best

I May Destroy You is a British black comedy drama that premiered in 2020 with 12 episodes. I May Destroy You really is the Michaela Cole show, as she created, wrote, co-directed, and starred as the lead character, Arabella Essiedu. Naturally, her writing and the series’ music were both recognized at the Emmys.

I May Destroy You is a psychological drama that follows the young writer Arabella waking up after a night out in London and trying to remember what happened. I May Destroy You has an irresistible mixture of comedy and drama. The miniseries has plenty of serious and upsetting themes, making it an intense rollercoaster.

3 Angels In America Has A Stacked Cast Handling Poignant Issues

Angels in America is an HBO miniseries from 2003 that’s structured as if it were a colossal movie separated into six chapters. Angels in America follows six individuals who live in New York amidst the AIDS crisis of the mid-1980s. Each of them are affected in some way.

Angels in America has a stacked cast that’s headed by Al Pacino and Meryl Streep, with Emma Thompson and Michael Gambon of the Harry Potter movies also starring. Angels in America is a compelling fantasy, drama, and romance show, which is proved by the numerous awards it won.

2 Band Of Brothers Is War Drama At Its Best

Band of Brothers is a 10-episode miniseries about World War II. The series follows “Easy Company” through their various trials and tribulations. Band of Brothers is remembered as a quintessential war series; it builds up numerous characters before hitting them with tragedy and the natural grief that comes with war.

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Looking back, Band of Brothers boasted one of the best and most stacked casts ever seen in one television series, and many of the actors went on to have hugely successful careers. There is a reason why Band of Brothers still has a 9.4 IMDb rating with almost half a million contributing scores. It has suspense, action, and emotion in droves for a truly memorable watching experience.

1 Chernobyl Is Five Exceptional Episodes Of Intense Chaos And Tragedy

Chernobyl is a historical drama miniseries that discusses the 1986 Chernobyl disaster and the surrounding fallout. The five-part series premiered in 2019, and its captivating storytelling gripped audiences with its scenes of horror, disaster, and tragedy.

Craig Mazin was at the helm for Chernobyl, and fans of the new HBO series The Last of Us will recognize his influence, as he is the co-creator alongside Neil Druckmann. With Chernobyl, Mazin expertly built up tension while introducing characters and putting them through emotional turmoil. Chernobyl mixed fact and fiction, which made the miniseries an incredible yet horrifying experience.

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