New in streaming: November 2023: Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Prime Video, Disney Plus, Apple TV Plus, NOW, ITVX
From the start of The Crown's last season with Imelda Staunton to the return of David Tennant in Doctor Who, here's the best of streaming in November
Netflix UK release date: Thursday 2 November
Steven Knight is one of the most prolific TV writers of our times: Peaky Blinders, Great Expectations, and Spencer are just a few recent triumphs. And his latest effort, adapting the Pulitzer-winning WWII novel All the Light We Cannot See with Stranger Things director Shawn Levy, spells another victory.
In occupied France, Marie-Laure (Aria Mia Loberti), who is blind, is forced to flee Paris with her father (Mark Ruffalo) to stop a legendary diamond from falling into Nazi hands. They find refuge in the walled city of St Malo, meeting with her uncle (Hugh Laurie) who transmits radio broadcasts for the French Resistance. Meanwhile, in Nazi Germany, the young Werner (Louis Hofmann) is recognised for his talents with radio technology and recruited into the Hitler Youth – soon crossing auditory paths with Marie-Laure.
Fingernails, Apple TV+
Apple TV+ UK release date: Friday 3 November
Given the international success of Yorgos Lanthimos (Poor Things) – one of the key figures in the Greek Weird Wave film movement – the drive to find a fresher version is hardly surprising. Christos Nikou made the cult hit Apples in 2020, which was selected as Greece’s official entry for the Oscars, and now he’s moving into the English language for his new film Fingernails.
big names like Jessie Buckley (I’m Thinking of Ending Things), Jeremy
Allen White (The Bear) and Riz Ahmed (The Sound of Metal), Nikou’s romcom satire shares plenty with Lanthimos’s English-language debut The Lobster.
It’s set in a strange future where it’s scientifically possible to verify if
two people are in love, decided through a special machine that analyses the couple's fingernails. But Anna (Buckley), a technician at the Love Institute, finds
herself contradicting the science. Despite being in a matched relationship with
tepid boyfriend Ryan (White), she begins to have feelings for her mentor Amir
Netflix UK release date: Friday 3 November
The need for conquest seems innate in human nature, and you can see it in athletes and daredevils: the need to climb a mountain; the need to swim the Channel. Documentary filmmakers Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi have some experience in this area, having made Free Solo – about a man who climbs a granite monolith alone and without a rope. Now, in their first fictionalised effort, the directors tackle the water for NYAD.
Nyad disputedly achieved the feat of swimming over 110 miles between Havana and
Florida, at the age of 64. The film follows the rigorous training towards the big event, with Annette Bening playing Diana and Jodie Foster as her coach and former
girlfriend Bonnie Stoll. As well as the incredible distance, Diana has sharks and
box jellyfish to deal with.
The Buccaneers, Apple TV+
Apple TV+ UK release date: Wednesday 8 November
Free-spirited, bodice-ripping period dramas have always been in demand on television (at least since 1995, when Colin Firth went for a swim). But Bridgerton ignited a more fun, sexual, American energy into the genre. Apple TV+ has already delved into that territory with the bizarre and underrated comedy-drama Dickinson, but its new venture The Buccaneers – based on the unfinished novel by The Age of Innocence author Edith Wharton – looks to be in direct competition with the chart-busting Netflix show.
With a culture-clash premise worthy of Ted Lasso, the series opens with a gaggle of vivacious American women sent to the strait-laced society of 1870s London – aiming to find husbands. But these buccaneers have much more in mind, which dismantles the rigid traditions of the time. Stars Mad Men’s Christina Hendricks.
The Killer, Netflix
Netflix UK release date: Friday 10 November
David Fincher has often looked away from his bloody and macabre lens on humanity. Examples like The Social Network and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button proved to be more than side experiments; they're even lauded as some of his best work. But as with a lot of established auteurs, there’s a certain salivation for what made Fincher famous: i.e., the insurgents and murderers that have bled across his oeuvre via Seven, Fight Club, Zodiac and Gone Girl.
Strangely, despite his latest film The Killer watering that cinematic thirst for blood, it's hardly a competitor. The Netflix revenge-thriller about a disillusioned hitman feels more like a side project than any of his side projects. But don’t fret: whisked into his usual grey/yellow colour palette, Fincher’s gross, bleak and detailed storytelling remains untarnished.
The Curse, Paramount+
Paramount+ UK release date: Saturday 11 November
Last year, the socially strange comedian Nathan Fielder created the mind-bending reality show The Rehearsal. It was one of the most bizarre and addictive examples of the genre (and was included in Culture Whisper’s favourite shows of 2022). For 2023, in collaboration with the brilliant Benny Safdie (Uncut Gems), Fielder embarks on a similarly weird and ambitious project: The Curse.
and Emma Stone star as married couple Asher and Whitney, who are making a home-renovation series to project a family-friendly image of themselves. But their bright, televisual facades begin to melt, which the duplicitous producer Dougie (Safdie) is keen to capture.
A Murder At the End of the World, Disney+
Disney+ UK release date: Tuesday 14 November
The oddball sci-fi series The OA is one of Netflix’s most controversial cancellations. The creators Zal Batmanglij and Brit Marling have kept quiet on the writing front since the show’s cliffhanger demise in 2019, but now they’ve hopped onto the whodunnit trend with A Murder at the End of the World. Despite its premise mirroring Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, this seven-part limited series feels stranger and darker.
The Crown actor Emma Corrin stars as the hacker and amateur sleuth Darby Hart, one of nine guests invited to the retreat of a solitary billionaire (Clive Owen). A guest is found dead and Darby uses her skills to prove who the murderer is. Also stars Harris Dickinson (Triangle of Sadness).
The Crown, season 6, part 1, Netflix
Netflix UK release date: Thursday 16 November
When Peter Morgan’s royal Netflix series started back in 2016, who could’ve predicted the real-life dramas that'd happen during its run? Prince Andrew stepped down from his duties after the infamous Newsnight interview, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle left the family (airing their grievances in a Netflix documentary), and Prince Charles became King after the death of Elizabeth II. Considering the classic rumblings about abolishing the monarchy, a lot of royalist anger is directed toward The Crown. And although much of it is unfounded, that fury only contributes to the series’ resonance in our time.
Thankfully, season six is extending only as far as the early noughties. And like Harry & Meghan last year, it's being split into two parts: the first dropping on Thursday 16 November and the second on Thursday 14 December. The first part is confirmed to cover Princess Diana's (Elizabeth Debicki) growing relationship with Dodi Fayed (Khalid Abdalla) before their deaths in the Pont de l'Alma car crash in 1997.
Read our review of season five.
Squid Game: The Challenge, Netflix
Netflix UK release date: Wednesday 22 November
A horrifying eternity has passed since Squid Game season one concluded. Hwang Dong-hyuk’s record-breaking series – still at the top of the worldwide Netflix charts – was a colourfully violent thriller that pitted hundreds of competitors against each other through children’s games… to the death. In an effort to fill the Squid Game gap in our lives, as well as build up hype for the upcoming season, Netflix has commissioned a reality show based on the concept. Hopefully, the players won’t lie in puddles of blood if and when they lose.
in the UK, Squid Game: The Challenge gathers 456 contestants to play various
games for the chance to win $4.56 million – the biggest jackpot
in reality history, according to Variety. However, the show has already become mired in controversy because of (somewhat ironic) complaints that the working
conditions were ‘inhumane’. Could the show and the act of watching it prove to resemble a multi-layered Black Mirror episode? Would we turn into
the garishly masked capitalists, viewing the chaos from a place of luxury? We’ll have to watch to find out…
Doctor Who: 60th Anniversary, BBC iPlayer
BBC iPlayer release date: 25 November
What a time to be a Doctor Who fan! First, Russell T Davies announced his return – nearly 20 years after rebooting the series to stupendous success. Then, after an earth-shattering breakthrough in Sex Education, Ncuti Gatwa was announced as the next Doctor – a genius piece of casting that can’t be unseen. And following Disney’s purchase of the show’s streaming rights, the budget has increased substantially. But none of those thrilling developments compared to the closing scene of Jodie Whittaker’s final episode, during which she reverse-regenerated into David Tennant (aka the 10th Doctor).
A trilogy of specials will air from November, celebrating the show’s 60th anniversary. As well as Tennant, Catherine Tate also returns as the underrated series four companion Donna Noble. New cast members include Neil Patrick Harris, Heartstopper’s Yasmin Finney, and Millie Gibson as the latest companion Ruby Sunday.
ITVX release date: TBC late November
Did you know that Cary Grant was born in Bristol, and that his birthname was Archibald Alexander Leach? Although everyone associates the classic Hollywood star with a statuesque face and a mid-Atlantic accent – seen in Bringing Up Baby, His Girl Friday and North By Northwest – his humble, West Country beginnings aren't easy to guess. But that is the reality, covered in detail by Stan & Ollie writer Jeff Pope in his new four-part bio-drama Archie.
Starting from his troubled early life in Bristol – facing grief, poverty and parental adultery – the series dives into Archibald’s teenage interest in performing. He joins the music hall act Bob Pender Troupe at 14, finding himself stuck in the US after the tour went international. Archibald decides to stay in the land of opportunity, which leads to global fame. Jason Isaacs plays Leach/Grant alongside Laura Aikman (Scrapper) as ex-wife Dyan Cannon and Harriet Walter (Succession) as his mother Elsie Leach.
The full November 2023 streaming slate:
Wednesday 1 November
The Simpsons, season 34 (Disney+)
Cigarette Girl (Netflix)
Hurricane Season (Netflix)
Locked In (Netflix)
Mysteries of the Faith (Netflix)
Nuovo Olimpo (Netflix)
Till Murder Do Us Part: Soering vs Haysom (Netflix)
All the Light We Cannot See (Netflix)
Higuita: The Way of a Scorpion (Netflix)
Unicorn Academy (Netflix)
Fingernails (Apple TV+)
Quiz Lady (Disney+)
Blue Eye Samurai (Netflix)
Daily Dose of Sunshine (Netflix)
Ferry: The Series (Netflix)
Selling Sunset, season 7 (Netflix)
Invincible, season 2 (Prime Video)
Lawmen: Bass Reeves (Paramount+)
The Santa Clauses, season 2 (Disney+)
The Billionaire, the Butler and the Boyfriend (Netflix)
Cyberbunker: The Criminal Underworld (Netflix)
Escaping Twin Flames (Netflix)
Robbie Williams (Netflix)
Nandor Fodor and the Talking Mongoose (Prime Video)
For All Mankind, season 4 (Apple TV+)
At the Moment (Netflix)
Fame After Fame (Netflix)
The Killer (Netflix)
NCIS: Sydney (Paramount+)
007: Road to a Million (Prime Video)
The Curse (Paramount+)
A Murder at the End of the World (Disney+)
How to Become a Mob Boss (Netflix)
Brawn: The Impossible Formula 1 Story (Disney+)
Best. Christmas. Ever! (Netflix)
The Crown, season 6, part 1 (Netflix)
Monarch: Legacy of Monsters (Apple TV+)
Dashing Through the Snow (Disney+)
All-Time High (Netflix)
Believer 2 (Netflix)
Scott Pilgrim Takes Off (Netflix)
Maxine’s Baby: The Tyler Perry Story (Prime Video)
Twin Love (Prime Video)
Saturday 18 December
David Holmes: The Boy Who Lived (NOW)
Hannah Waddingham: Home for Christmas (Apple TV+)
The Velveteen Rabbit (Apple TV+)
Squid Game: The Challenge (Netflix)
Good Burger 2 (Paramount+)
A Nearly Normal Family (Netflix)
Saturday 25 November
Doctor Who: 60th Anniversary (BBC iPlayer)
Intrusion: Stasi FC (NOW)
Faraway Downs (Disney+)
Love Like a K-Drama (Netflix)
Slow Horses season 3 (AppleTV+)
The Artful Dodger (Disney+)
American Symphony (Netflix)
The Murder of Lyn Dawson: The Teacher, The Groomer, The Killer (NOW)
Greatest Guitar Riffs (NOW)
The Lazarus Project, series 2 (NOW)