If there’s one thing that Aussies love it’s sports. When we’re not playing sports, we’re watching them and when we’re not watching them directly, we’re watching TV series’ and movies about them.
From the intense world of sports betting to the beauty and drama of Chess, here’s our top seven binge-worthy TV Series’ from the last 10 years where sports play a key role:
Peaky Blinders (2013 – present, Netflix)
Peaky Blinders is one of the most talked-about Netflix series’ at the moment. The British period drama, which chronicles the life a historic 1900s criminal gang from Birmingham, focuses much of its plot around the Shelby family’s sports betting operation.
The drama takes place at a time and place far from the world of legal Australian betting sites that modern sports fans are accustomed to and the Peaky Blinders are able to do pretty much what they want in the country where modern betting was born.
The Shelby family’s exploits outside of the law, which lead to frequent scenes of drama and violence, have managed to capture millions of viewers from around the world. Filming is currently underway in what is set to be the sixth and final season of the show.
All American (2018 – present, Stan)
All American is (as you may be able to guess) and Amercian series about a High School Football star. When Spencer James, from Crenshaw, South L.A. is given a scholarship to Beverly Hills High two different worlds collide.
The show is inspired by the life of professional football player Spencer Paysinger and explores youth sports in the USA as well as the relationship between two vastly different sides of American life.
Ted Lasso (2020 – present, Apple TV +)
For sports fans looking for something a little more lighthearted, there’s the award winning American comedy series Ted Lasso. Starring Jason Sudeikis (We’re the Millers, Saturday Night Live, Horrible Bosses), Ted is an American Football coach who is recruited to move to the UK and coach the Premier League side AFC Richmond.
Sudeikis won the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a TV Comedy Series in 2020 for his performance and the series was renewed for a third season in October, 2020.
Last Chance U (2016 – 2020, Netflix)
Many sports series’ have their roots in reality but take liberalities in their story telling – not Last Chance U. The documentary series follows real-life college football teams, and their players and coaching staff, as they navigate the challenges of academic life, college football and troubled pasts.
The series focuses on the stories of many of the school’s star athletes as they work to turn their lives around and earn Division One scholarships or professional contracts. The passionate and sometimes problematic personalties of players and staff involved with the teams are also explored.
There are currently five seasons of the show with East Missisipi Community College, Independence Community College of Kansas and Laney College of Oakland, California the 3 schools followed.
The Queen’s Gambit (2020, Netflix)
Chess is one of the most intellectual sports in the world and Netflix manages to capture this reality in The Queen’s Gambit. The mini series has won critical acclaim and is attributed as one of the key factors in an explosion of recent worldwide chess interest. The main protagonist, Beth Harmon is played by Anya Taylor-Joy who won the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Miniseries.
The show is set in Cold War era United States and follows a young ophan with an extraordinary talent who has to put her entire life on the line to become the best chess player in the world.
The English Game (2020, Netflix)
If you’re a football fan you’ll probably love this miniseries that uncovers the origins of the beautiful game in England. Set in the 1870s, the show highlights the beginning of the FA Cup and the problems surrounding football at the time.
The English Game is a period drama that explores the birth of football competitions as they are known today and the emergence of professional football in England. There’s one season with six episodes and it’s well worth the watch for those who enjoy the sport.
Ballers (2015 – 2019, Binge/Foxtel)
Dwayne Johnson plays Spencer Strasmore in this American comedy-drama about a retired NFL player who is now working as a financial manager for other NFL players. Ballers is all about the world of football, luxury and business and has been described as the Entourage of the NFL.
Ballers ended in 2019 after 5 seasons with Dwayne Johnson’s charm and depth being one of the series’ major drawcards.