It’s a new month and that means you’ve got a whole new batch of movies and TV shows online and ready to stream directly into your living room or onto a mobile device. According to a recent IAB survey, over three-quarters of Americans stream TV shows and movies from Netflix and YouTube, while about half look to Amazon Prime and other portals like Google to satisfy their viewing needs. The survey also found, “One in Three U.S. Adults Owns a Connected TV, with Many Spending 50% or More of Their TV Viewing Time Devoted to Digital Video Programing & 76% Saying that Streaming Video to TV Is As Good As or Better Than Traditional TV.”
Streaming content pioneer Netflix, which hooked us all on their original series’ like House of Cards and Orange is the New Black, is still serving up the widest array of digital entertainment and they’re releasing a great mix of classics and future addictions this month.
One of the most anticipated new series, Grace and Frankie, premiers on May 8. It stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin as two women whose husbands (Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston) have just announced they are gay and in love with each other. If these ladies are even half as amazing together as they were in 9 to 5, this will be an instant hit.
If you’re a fan of atmospheric, apocalyptic thrillers, you have to check out Between. It’s a Canadian series about a town under quarantine because it’s been overrun by a mysterious disease that kills everyone over 21. The first episode of this six-part series premiers on May 21 and the rest of the episodes will come out weekly. As dedicated binge-watchers we hope this isn’t the beginning of a trend! Kids can look forward to two new animated Netflix Originals, The Adventures of Puss in Boots on May 8 and H2O Mermaid Adventures on May 22. Richie Rich Season 2 (May 22) and Mako Mermaids Season 3 (May 29) are also on the way.
Netflix isn’t just offering up episodic TV shows online. JenKirkman: I’m Gonna Die Alone (And I Feel Fine), an original comedy special by stand-up comedian and Chelsea Lately writer Jen Kirkman premiers on May 22. If you’re a documentary fan—or have a daughter—you’ll want to watch Hot Girls Wanted, available May 29. Rashida Jones produced this disturbing but informative doc about 18-year-old girls and the growing online amateur porn industry.
And there are some great old and new flicks to add to your queue. Make room for Legally Blonde I & II, Fruitvale Station, Taxi Driver, The Last Waltz, Blue Velvet, The Babadook and Frankie & Alice.
Amazon Prime is beginning to rival Netflix when it comes to great original TV shows online but they’re not dropping any new seasons this month. They are adding lots of new films to their roster for May, including some fascinating documentaries. The People vs. George Lucas explores the love/hate relationship between die-hard Star Wars fans and director George Lucas. If you never got around to seeing Werner Herzog’s 2005 doc Grizzly Man, now’s your chance. Be warned, it is literally a bit grizzly as it’s based on found footage of grizzly bear enthusiast Timothy Treadwell and his girlfriend being killed by their favorite subjects. On a lighter note, Art & Craft follows the adventures of Mark Landis who was one of the most prolific art forgers in U.S. history. You can also catch up on Defiance, season 2 and Suits, season 4.