Free-wheeling use of language, nudity, graphic violence, what have you, premium cable stations like HBO, Showtime and Starz lack of limitations allow the networks to create shows that are much more realistic and at the same time further fetched than their network or basic cable counterparts. The lack of censorship and innovative storylines has reeled in viewers from all demographics, and not just those who splurge for all the stations through their Direct tv or Dish satellite packages. Between DVD sales and viewing parties, the fame of such shows spans far beyond even lofty premium cable subscription numbers, and deservedly so. Met with critical acclaim and legions of regular fans, the following titles are not only the best premium cable has to offer, but perhaps the best shows on TV.1. Entourage (HBO) Adrian Grenier stars as Vincent Chase, a movie star navigating the highs and lows of the rich and famous. As he takes his Brooklyn crew along for the Hollywood ride, each season features fresh career pitfalls, outrageous purchases and, of course, women.2. Weeds (Showtime) A suburban drug-dealing mother of two, Nancy Botwin tries to make ends meet after the passing of her husband in the backwards world of affluent suburban America. A steady diet of laughs and off-hand political commentary, this black comedy holds weight no matter the preferred state of mind.3. Boardwalk Empire (HBO) This newcomer to the HBO lineup recently walked away with the prestigious Best Television Drama Award at the Golden Globes, establishing the time piece on Knucky Thompson and his slew of Prohibition era gangsters as not only a fan favorite but one of the most well-respected shows on the air.4. Californication (Showtime) Writer Hank Moody is far from your pasty-faced, reclusive wordsmith, rather embattled with vices most men only dream of acting on, from heavy drinking to womanizing to free spending. Despite fame and relative fortune, Hank struggles against his inner-demons to recreate his early-career success and re-gain the affection of his longtime girlfriend, while balancing the burden of fatherhood against his morally depraved lifestyle.5. Dexter (Showtime) Just your average serial killer next door, title character Dexter is a forensic bloodstain analyst for the Miami PD by day and a mass-murder by night. The catch? Dexter only kills killers, feeding his sociopathic predilection for murder in the most socially responsible manner possible.
www.aboutstarz.com — January 27, 2011, 12:00 am
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