Paramount+: best streaming shows of 2023

From Yellowjackets to The Inspired Unemployed – here are the top Paramount+ shows of 2023 according to ScreenHub writers.

Here are the six best shows to stream on Paramount+ in 2023, as reviewed by ScreenHub authors.

Yellowjackets S2 – 4.5 star review

Yellowjackets. Image: Paramount+.

‘It’s exciting enough that any TV show now tells its own unique story rather than being based on pre-existing intellectual property. But Yellowjackets is particularly rich, complex and gripping, and I love the way it subverts many of the simplistic ‘trauma and recovery’ tropes familiar from ‘elevated horror’. It has a flinty, anti-nostalgic quality: do you look back yearningly at your youth, or strive to outrun your past mistakes and regrets? Yes, the characters are ‘damaged’ – but they also have agency, and they can’t truly be controlled. This is a show in which women might do literally anything.’

Read: Yellowjackets S2 review: these women might do anything

NCIS: Sydney – 4 star review

NCIS Sydney. Image: Paramount+.

‘To be extremely clear, this isn’t trying to do anything new with the by-now very well-established NCIS formula. If you like those series you’ll almost certainly like this, even if your interest in the franchise is strictly just ‘I can’t find the remote after The Cheap Seats has finished, guess I’ll stick around and find out who murdered that naval cadet working on a secret code-breaking formula, hope the relationship between the sexy NCIS agent and the sexy NCIS coroner isn’t on the rocks because it’s the anniversary of his wife’s death’.’

Read: NCIS Sydney review: Bob Hawke was dope?

Adam Hills: Grow Another Foot – 4 star review

Adam Hills: Grow Another Foot. Image: Paramount+.

‘Hills is an endearing and charismatic central figure, and his commitment to the sport and his team mates constantly shines through. He’s not afraid to show the emotional and physical toll it all takes; it’s a side of him that the usually polished performer (occasional rants on The Last Leg aside) rarely displays. But while this is obviously a salute to determination, overcoming the odds, the power of mateship and the majesty of sporting achievement, a persistent theme throughout is just how physically risky taking part in full contact rugby is for a lot of the players.’

Read: Adam Hills: Grow Another Foot review – eyes on the ball

The Betoota Advocate Presents – 4 star review

The Betoota Advocate Presents. Image: Paramount+

‘Australian satirical sites have a bit of a tradition of moving into serious news commentary. The Chaser’s commentary site, The Shot, made a name for itself during the dregs of the Morrison government for repeatedly pointing out that the Morrison government was often a bit rubbish. This isn’t that, because there’s nothing particularly controversial being said here. It’s more of an extension of the brand, a way to present Betoota as the face of a certain kind of blunt, cut-through-the-crap, tell-it-like-it-is Aussie story-telling. What you get with The Betoota Advocate Presents is engaging and informative factual entertainment. From the website that gave you headlines like ‘Uni Student At Stage Where They Think It’s Time To Host A Dinner Party’ and ‘Balding Guy At Least Quite Tall’, maybe it is on brand after all?’

Read: The Betoota Advocate Presents review: irreverent explainers surprise and delight

The Inspired Unemployed: (Impractical) Jokers – 4 star review

The Inspired Unemployed. Image: Paramount+.

‘Not all prank shows are created equal. First you have the kind where the joke is on unsuspecting members of the public – classic shows like Candid Camera, or somewhat less classic series like Balls of Steel. Sometimes you get a series where the pranks are trying to take down the high-profile and powerful, which is the kind of thing that shot The Chaser and Ali G to fame. The Inspired Unemployed are four twenty-something mates – Jack Steele, Liam Moore, Dom Littrich and Matt ‘Falcon’ Ford – on a mission to humiliate each other. Ford and Steele are the ones behind their popular Instagram page and they’re big on TikTok as well, but here all four are on an equal footing and nobody’s getting off lightly.’

Read: The Inspired Unemployed: (Impractical) Jokers review

Paper Dolls4 star review

Paper Dolls. Image: Paramount+.

‘Pop music goes in cycles, nostalgia is always in fashion, and pointing out the sexism of the music industry while young women in sexy costumes gyrate on stage is just good business. Paper Dolls isn’t so much lifting the lid on the inner workings of celebrity as giving audiences a more polished and twist-heavy reboot of what Pop Stars was serving up 20 years ago. Turns out the music business is sleazy, exploitative and heartless – I guess that’s what makes it so entertaining.’

Read: Paper Dolls, Paramount+ review: a musical roller-coaster ride

Paul Dalgarno is author of the novels A Country of Eternal Light (2023) and Poly (2020); the memoir And You May Find Yourself (2015); and the creative non-fiction book Prudish Nation (2023). He was formerly Deputy Editor of The Conversation and joined ScreenHub as Managing Editor in 2022. X: @pauldalgarno. Insta: @dalgarnowrites