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The Best TV Shows and Movies on HBO and HBO Max in January

Euphoria and Search Party return, and Peacemaker premieres

Tim Surette
John Reynolds, Meredith Hagner, John Early, and Alia Shawkat, Search Party

John Reynolds, Meredith Hagner, John Early, and Alia Shawkat, Search Party

Jon Pack/HBO Max

HBO and HBO Max are really taking their New Year's resolutions to bring you some awesome things to watch seriously. January 2022 is packed, with the final season of Search Party starting things off on Jan. 7, followed by the Season 2 premiere of Euphoria on Jan. 9. Later in the month, it's all about new originals, headlined by the John Cena DC Comics series Peacemaker, which premieres Jan. 13, and The Gilded Age, the period drama from Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, which drops Jan. 24. And for all you fans of classic sci-fi gems, HBO Max will be the new streaming home of the excellent Fringe starting Jan. 15. 

Our list of suggestions for the best shows and movies on HBO and HBO Max in January is below.

The Best TV Shows and Movies on HBO and HBO Max in January 2022

Search Party

Season 5 premiere Jan. 7 on HBO Max 
In its fifth and final season, Search Party is getting culty. After surviving the fire at the end of Season 4, Dory (Alia Shawkat) has apparently had some kind of spiritual awakening, and now feels it's her responsibility to deliver that enlightenment to others. (Keep in mind that she's killed two people.) To do so, she teams up with a billionaire played by Jeff Goldblum, as one does, and ropes her friends, Drew (John Reynolds), Elliott (John Early), and Portia (Meredith Hagner) into it. I trust this show to take me on the wildest of rides for its last hurrah, just like it always does. -Allison Picurro


Season 2 premiere Jan. 9 on HBO, HBO Max
The badly behaved teens of Euphoria are back, baby. Somehow, the first season of this show aired all the way back in 2019, and aside from two special episodes in between, this is the first we've seen of Rue (Zendaya), Jules (Hunter Schafer), and their very chic peers in a while. Rue is still reeling after her relapse, and now she's wheeling around a suitcase full of pills that seems to be part of her new "amazing plan" to do... something. It's not quite clear, but it's almost certainly going to result in complete chaos. I can't wait to see how much glitter they all pour on themselves this season. -Allison Picurro

The Righteous Gemstones

Season 2 premiere Jan. 9 on HBO, HBO Max
Hallelujah! The Righteous Gemstones, creator-star Danny McBride's laugh-out-Lord funny satire of greedy evangelical megachurch pastors, is back for a long-awaited second season (the series premiered way back in August 2019). In Season 2, the Gemstone family is fending off attacks from interlopers trying to take down their megachurch empire. They're like the Duttons of Yellowstone but intentionally funny. One of the biggest threats comes from journalist Thaniel Block (Jason Schwartzman), who's working on an exposé of the Gemstones' wanton corruption. Meanwhile, the Gemstones partner in constructing a Christian timeshare community with Lyle Lissons (Eric André with a crazy Southern accent). The Righteous Gemstones is one of a select few comedy series currently on TV whose primary objective is to make you laugh so hard that snot shoots out of your nose every scene. -Liam Mathews


Series premieres Jan. 13 on HBO Max
John Cena brings his The Suicide Squad DC Comics character Peacemaker — a buff guy who wants peace so badly he's willing to be extremely violent about it — to the small screen, with James Gunn writing all the episodes (it was a COVID "fun" project for him) and directing five of them. If you saw the surprisingly great The Suicide Squad (not to be confused with but of course it's going to be confused with the dud Suicide Squad), you know this has a chance to be really good, with Gunn riding the gross-out humor of The Suicide Squad into an origin tale of the best character from the film who wasn't a walking weasel. Joining Cena are Steve AgeeDanielle Brooks, and Robert Patrick


Complete series streaming Jan. 15 on HBO Max
Can I interest you in a Fringe rewatch (or first-time watch) in these trying times? The ambitious Fox procedural, which aired from 2008-2013 and was co-created by J.J. Abrams, is finally about to be a little easier to stream, which is either great or terrible news for all the people I've been bothering about Fringe lately. The sci-fi series stars Anna Torv as Olivia Dunham, an agent with the FBI's Fringe Division, who enlists Peter Bishop (Joshua Jackson) and his scientist father, Walter Bishop (John Noble), to consult on strange cases. It starts as a mostly case-of-the-week procedural, but Fringe really takes off when it leans into its parallel-universe mythology, evolving into a propulsive drama about family, redemption, and trying to avert the looming end of the world. It's hard to imagine we'll see anything like it on network TV again anytime soon. I treated myself to a rewatch this fall, and I had a blast. -Kelly Connolly

Somebody Somewhere

Series premiere Jan. 16 on HBO, HBO Max
Comedian Bridget Everett stars in this indie-com about a woman named Sam learning to find herself in Kansas after the untimely death of her sister. But it's not a sad show! In fact, Somebody Somewhere is about relishing the joys of friendship, expressing yourself, and embracing what makes you unique, but in that weird way that the choir club at high school used to do. Everett's chemistry with Sam's new BFF Joel (Jeff Hiller) is going to be a highlight of 2022. Plus there's fart jokes and party invitations written on ketchup packets. What's not to like?

The Gilded Age

Series premiere Jan. 24 on HBO, HBO Max
If you're into period dramas in general and Downton Abbey specifically, you're probably going to be into The Gilded Age, a new HBO series from Downton creator Julian Fellowes. And if you're not usually a fan of that kind of thing, you might be after you see this cast list. It's got Carrie Coon! It's got Christine Baranski! It's got Cynthia Nixon! And it's got a lineup of recurring and guest stars that reads like a who's who of Broadway, including Nathan LaneAudra McDonaldKelli O'HaraDonna Murphy, and Michael Cerveris. NEW YORK, BABY! I think I love period dramas now. Anyway, the plot, if it matters, revolves around a pair of old-money sisters (Baranski and Nixon) warring with their new-money neighbor (Coon) in 1880s New York City. Everybody raise a pinky. -Kelly Connolly

Looking for more recommendations of what to watch next? We have a ton of them! And if you're looking for more hand-picked recommendations based on TV shows you love, we have those too.