May traditionally marks the end of the TV season, but this year there were a number of shows whose seasons were cut short because of the coronavirus pandemic, so new TV episodes are drying up even sooner than usual. Luckily, there is an abundance of television already out there, and if you're looking for something new to sink your teeth into, we suggest trying out a new streaming service and broadening your viewing horizons.
Now is actually the perfect time to explore new territory, as several streaming services and pay cable networks are currently offering 30-day free trials or discounted pricing to new subscribers in an effort to help families safely and happily pass the time while social distancing. So check out the list of services below and get busy finding your next binge.
Acorn TV is a streaming service dedicated to bringing you programming from the U.K and beyond. The service, available in the U.S. and Canada, is currently offering a 30-day free trial for new subscribers. Those interested can sign up at Acorn TV with the special code FREE30.
Shudder is dedicated to bringing viewers thrilling horror programs, and the service is currently offering a 30-day free trial for new subscribers. It is available in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Ireland, and you can sign up at Shudder with the special code SHUTIN.
Sundance Now is a streaming service that will make you the cool kid among your group of friends, as it features a number of great programs and miniseries many people might have missed but are worth watching. It is currently available in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and Ireland. New subscribers can sign up at Sundance Now using the special code SUNDANCENOW30.
UMC (Urban Movie Channel), a service dedicated to black TV and film, features sitcoms like UPN's All of Us, throwback films like Eddie Murphy's Harlem Nights, network TV shows like OWN's Black Love, and more. Normally, $4.99 per month, the service is available with an extended 30-day free trial to new subscribers who use the code UMCFREE30.
Showtime is offering a 30-day free trial to new customers, who will be able to access the pay cable network's original series, movies, special, and documentaries via the Showtime service by going to Showtime.com or the Showtime app. Here is a list of recommendations of what to watch on Showtime first. Many of the network's streaming partners and traditional TV providers are all offering a 30-day free trial for Showtime as well.
Topic, a new streaming service featuring unique stories from around the world, is offering a 30-day free trial to new subscribers for a limited time along with a special rate for the first year of subscription: just $29.99, which is half the normal rate. New films and series are released weekly.
Recommendations: What's Your Ailment?, The Miracle, The Virtues
Sling TV is providing Americans with access to news and entertainment sources for free through its "Happy Hour Across America," which unlocks free prime-time television every night as a public service through May 15. New users can register to watch free TV every night from 5 p.m. to midnight by visiting Sling.com on a Chrome, Safari, or Edge browser and following the instructions.
SERVICES OFFERING FREE PARTIAL ACCESS
If you've always been envious of your neighbors having HBO while you are stuck with basic cable, now's your chance to put on your top hat and live like a king. HBO is offering a select portion of its library for free for a limited time (the terms of which have not yet been announced). All you have to do is download the HBO GO or HBO NOW apps or or head over to HBONOW.com or HBOGO.com to start watching. Or, if you have an Amazon account (which is free, no Prime needed), you can watch several of the shows and movies that way. We have a full list of what'a available, as well as the five programs we think you should watch first.
If you're wondering which streaming service is right for you, check out our comparison of Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, Disney+ and Apple TV+. And find the best shows and movies to stream, as well.
Editor's Note: A previous version of this story also listed Starz, CBS All Access, Criterion Channel, and Apple TV+ but those promotions have now ended.