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Top 6 Shows To Stream This Summer

TV series that give off that summer energy.

Summer TV series
Shutterstock / Andrey_Popov

It’s official! Summer is here and school is out. You know what that means: more time to binge your favorite TV series! If you’re looking for some entertainment that gives off that perfect summer energy, you’re in the right place. Here are six series that will get you pumped for the season of sun.

1. Looking for Alaska

Looking for Alaska image
Credit: Hulu / YouTube

Based on the novel by John Green, Looking for Alaska follows the primary character Miles “Pudge” Halter. Following a whim to seek more out of his life, Miles transfers to an Alabama boarding school called Culver Creek.

Miles meets Chip “The Colonel” Martin and his friends, but he’s particularly taken with Alaska Young. She’s what you might call a typical John Green character — smart, gorgeous, a little weird (quirky, if you will). Anyway, she and Miles really hit it off.

Tragedy strikes, however, and Miles realizes everything may not be as it seems. The series explores love, plus elements of vulnerability and mystery. The boarding school really gives off more summer camp vibes than anything, and the show introduces character dynamics you won’t soon forget.

While Looking for Alaska originally premiered as a Hulu original, the streaming service removed the series last year in a content purge.

Where to stream: YouTube, Apple TV

2. The Summer I Turned Pretty

The Summer I Turned Pretty season 2
Credit: Amazon / YouTube

I know just about everybody has seen (or at least heard of) The Summer I Turned Pretty, but I had to include it. I mean, it doesn’t get better than a coastal summer love triangle with a side of family drama.

The series is adapted from Jenny Han’s book trilogy and concerns Isabel “Belly” Conklin’s annual trip to Cousins Beach. Her family goes every summer to meet up with the Fishers, whom they’ve known since Belly was a little girl.

The Fisher brothers, Conrad and Jeremiah, couldn’t be more different. Conrad is the moodier, strong-and-silent type. Jeremiah is the outgoing, golden retriever type. News flash: both of them have a thing for Belly. And their mom, Susannah, has a sad secret.

From the music to the wardrobe to the scenery, The Summer I Turned Pretty is overflowing with summer energy. Go stream the first two seasons — season 3 is coming in 2025.

Where to stream: Prime Video

3. The O.C.

The O.C. TV series
Credit: College Hills Pictures Inc. / YouTube

What if there was a ‘summer’ version of Gossip Girl? Well, there is, and it’s The O.C.

When troubled teen Ryan Atwood is kicked out of his home, he moves in with a rich couple — Sandy and Kirsten Cohen. He becomes besties with their son, Seth, and is thrown into the lives of the upper class.

O.C. stands for Orange County. The series takes place in California, the perfect location for some summer drama. Most of the series focuses on the relationships between characters, including the girl-next-door, Marissa, and Seth’s crush, Summer (apt name, no?).

There are four seasons, each one placing emphasis on different storylines. Ryan and his friends face the challenges of adolescence, heartbreak, conflicting lifestyles, and good old family dysfunction. Trust me, there’s never a dull moment.

Where to stream: Hulu, Max, Prime Video

4. Surviving Summer

Surviving Summer TV drama series
Credit: Werner Film Productions / YouTube

Another rebellious teen, by the name of Summer Torres (yippee!), is expelled from her school and sent away to live with a family friend — in Australia. Yes, you heard me right.

In this fictional town of Shorehaven, Summer reconnects with her childhood best friend Ari and joins in on the town’s competitive surfing. Be forewarned, Summer is the classic “troublemaker/wild child” stereotype, which might grind your gears a little. Don’t worry — some of the other characters are annoyed, too.

Some find the series to be juvenile, and others find it entertaining. The episodes are about 30 minutes apiece, which makes them very bingeable, and there are some pretty wild surfing shots.

If you’re looking for something quick and (relatively) painless, this one might be for you.

Where to stream: Netflix

5. Outer Banks

Outer Banks TV series
Credit: Netflix / YouTube

When Outer Banks premiered in April 2020, the internet ate it up. Quarantine was keeping everyone indoors, and Outer Banks had what we craved: entertainment, a bangin’ summer soundtrack, and cute surfer guys (and gals).

The series consists of 3 seasons so far and follows the adventures of John B, Pope, JJ, and Kiara — four teenaged friends living in the Outer Banks, North Carolina. This show has it all. Treasure hunts, mystery, suspense, and of course romance.

Outer Banks is popular for the summer energy, but it’s also known for some cringey dialogue. Exhibit A: “Dude, did you just yeet over that chain?” If you can get past the occasional moments of “teen slang,” though, I think it’s worth the watch.

Personally, I watch for the vibes and for JJ/Kiara. Sue me.

Where to stream: Netflix

6. H2O: Just Add Water

H2O: Just Add Water TV series
Credit: Jonathan M. Shiff Productions / YouTube

Adding this one purely for the nostalgia. Don’t act like you didn’t play mermaids in the pool all the time when you were a kid.

In this iconic 2000s series, three girls — Cleo, Rikki, and Emma — wind up as unlikely friends when a misadventure grants them mermaid powers. Now they have to keep their abilities hidden on top of dealing with typical high school drama. As if being a teenager wasn’t hard enough…

Any of you remember the (now ancient, by social media’s standards) “coconut girl” aesthetic? Well, Cleo, Rikki, and Emma were the forerunners. Their bright summer wardrobe and beachy accessories are a Y2K time capsule.

Trust me, it’s a fun, easy binge. But if you can’t stop saying “naur” after watching, don’t blame me.

Where to stream: Netflix, Prime Video, Sling TV

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