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Best TV shows to stream online via Netflix, Hulu, more

As Netflix, Amazon, HBO and Showtime dive deeper and deeper into the TV Anywhere (and anytime) pool, the opportunities to stream online — and binge happily — continue to grow. And grow rapidly. We are now in the midst of the best period for TV production — and hence viewing — of any time in the medium’s history.

But where to begin? In my continuing quest to figure out how to answer this for myself, I offer you another binge list — 50 ways to spend your valuable time without actually wasting your valuable time.

As usual, the same conditions apply, beginning of course with a fast Internet connection. And consider the ritual of deciding whether to binge a show similar to the ritual of deciding whether to read a book: Is the cover enticing? Does the subject (sci-fi? historical fantasy? satire?) interest you?

In that spirit, I’ve attempted to create some diversity here, but also provide some editorial direction. Pirates might not be your “thing” — for example — but “Black Sails” has some excellent action, and a first-rate lead in Toby Stephens. So if pirates are your thing, this is a reasonable place to go.

Here’s another point to consider: Bingeing isn’t about bingeing on commercials. It’s about total immersion in the show, with the fewest breaks possible. For that reason, most of what is here is on Netflix or the subscription services of the major pay services. But Hulu is also an acceptable venue — at least it seems to have figured out a way to make those breaks as painless as possible.

Happy bingeing.

BETTER CALL SAUL

“Better Call Saul,” AMC/On Demand. Better get on board to binge before the first season wraps. This is a worthy prequel to one of the greats: “Breaking Bad.”

MAD MEN

“Mad Men,” AMC/On Demand. This one needs no introduction, but just in case: Ad men, the ’60s, Don Draper … sound familiar? It all wraps in a few months, so time to binge it all on-demand now.

EMPIRE

“Empire,” Hulu. You’ve heard the hype, now see the hype. This is a prime-time soap, and a well-done one. Very easily consumed, there’s no

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