10 Shows To Watch If You Liked Silicon Valley

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10 Shows To Watch If You Liked Silicon Valley

Mike Judge has helmed the creation of several iconic shows, Silicon Valley being a recent example. Here are other shows like the series.

Mike Judge has helmed the creation of several iconic shows, Silicon Valley being a recent example. The HBO comedy series revolved around a group of down-on-luck programmers who wish to make it big in Silicon Valley, competing against several other programmers and companies who harbor similar dreams. Rather than delving into familiar underdog narratives, the show takes a more realistic turn leaving no stone unturned in satirizing corporate drama and cracking intellectually-superior jokes that many techies might relate to.

RELATED: Silicon Valley: Ranking Pied Piper’s Best Employees (& Bosses)

However, despite its technical jargon, it makes for great deadpan and situational humor, bolstered by performances of actors like Thomas Middleditch, Kumail Nanjiani, and Martin Starr. Running for six seasons, Silicon Valley was definitely a major entry in the pantheon of technological dramas and workplace comedies.

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10 The IT Crowd (2006-2013)

IT Crowd Feature Image

A show that might be the closest alternative to Silicon Valley is The IT Crowd. The British sitcom stars Richard Ayoade, Chris O’Dowd, and Jen Barber as three bumbling workers of a company’s IT department. It might seem like a goofy comedy on the surface, but The IT Crowd’s cult status was largely due to the lead performances and its dry wit. The laughing track in the initial episodes might seem dated but it gets better as the episodes progress.

RELATED: 10 Things To Watch If You Like The IT Crowd

The side plots involving the behind-the-scenes functioning of the company’s executives also provide further entertainment, with Martin Berry delivering a stand-out performance as the spoilt, brash CEO of the company.

9 Devs (2020)

Devs Hulu Nick Offerman Forest

A miniseries written and directed by modern sci-fi maestro Alex Garland, Devs reinvents familiar tropes around a future run by Artificial Intelligence and quantum computing. A large part of the show revolves around the companies of Silicon Valley that are venturing into such territories as a software engineer (Sonoya Mizuno) attempts to solve the mystery of her boyfriend’s death. The boyfriend, as it turns out, died on his first job at an IT company called Devs.

Her quest for the truth brings her closer to the company’s founder (played by Nick Offerman in one of his career-best roles). Devs is highly engaging and thrilling, serving as a warning for a technology-dominated future.

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8 Upload (2020-)

Upload is based on an interesting concept that quickly shifts from being gimmicky to pretty emotional and even believable. It’s set in a time when people can ‘upload’ their consciousness after their death, leading to a virtual afterlife. A programmer similarly gets a new life after his untimely death. But his overbearing girlfriend makes him question the negatives of such an altered state of mind. Matters get complicated as his cyber persona is handled by a company’s executive who seems to share a romantic bond with the protagonist.

Created by Greg Daniels (The Office, Parks and Recreation), Upload can get increasingly introspective in its approach, transcending the tropes of his usual sitcom-routines.

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7 Maniac (2019)

A surreal take on the Norwegian TV series of the same name, Maniacs bizarre, vibrant atmosphere makes for a highly engaging experience. Emma Stone and Jonah Hill’s performances are an added bonus. Both play troubled individuals who often dwell in solitude, finding meaning in life and overcoming a gloomy past.

To escape their worries, they volunteer as subjects for a mind-altering experiment that can erase their sad memories. As the experiment undergoes some unprecedented changes, they are forced to undergo virtual simulations in diverse settings and timelines where they can survive only with each other’s help. As much as Maniac is a masterful tech-thriller, it’s a heartwarming romance too.

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6 Silicon Valley: The Untold Story (2018)

A still from Silicon Valley The Untold Story

A three-part documentary Discovery’s Science Channel, the miniseries attempts to understand the timing and context of multiple revolutions in the tech-world that made Silicon Valley what it is today. Home to Facebook, Google, Intel, and hundreds of other major IT giants, this region in California got its name after the initial development of silicon chips and computers that progressed to further innovations in no time.

The in-depth research attempts to understand not only the scientific nature and entrepreneurship of the Valley (interviewing executives and founders like Apple’s Steve Wozniak) but also presents the Valley as an efficient business model, based on interviews with venture capitalists.

5 Mad Men (2007-2015)

Learning about JFK

Widely considered as a masterclass in writing and acting, Mad Men focuses on the advertising sector in 1960s America as Don Draper (Jon Hamm) works at a New York firm. While Draper’s professional life seems to be touching new heights, his own personal life suffers at the cost of this corporate success. The show drew immense praise for its characters, socio-political narratives, and accurate tones pertaining to its time period.

RELATED: Mad Men: 10 Historical & Pop Culture Events Referenced In The Show

Running for seven seasons, Mad Men makes for essential viewing for all those who crave stories around professional success and the burden that comes along with it.

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4 Halt And Catch Fire (2014-2017)

Halt and Catch Fire Season 3 Key Art

Halt and Catch Fire with its power-hungry characters drew parallels with shows like Mad Men but its premise and attention to detail still made it stand out on its own as a technology-driven period drama. Set in the technology boom of the 1980s, the show attempts to capture the excitement and innovations when the era of personal computing was just about to start. As IBM’s computers prove to have some flaws in them, a renegade employee of the company ends up fronting his own team to create a PC that would be much more effective than the IBM model.

Even though the storyline is fictitious, it dissects the era with as much authenticity as possible and serves as a fitting tribute to the engineers and programmers who shaped the future of Silicon Valley and computing.

3 Mr. Robot (2015-2019)

The show that launched Rami Malek’s career, Mr. Robot continues to be one of the most impactful and riveting cyber-thrillers in today’s times. Malek plays the role of Elliot, a supersmart cyber-security engineer with anxiety issues. While he manages his day job in the morning, he uses his hacking skills to catch felons by night.

RELATED: 10 Movies To Watch If You Miss Mr. Robot

After being recruited by a mysterious anarchist named Mr. Robot, Elliot’s life turns upside down as he attempts to take down the seemingly sinister corporation he works for. The lead character serves as an enthralling vigilante and goes through several moral debates that seem socially relevant in the real world too.

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2 StartUp (2016-2018)

As tech entrepreneurs rack their brains to get their stake in the rising digital currency sector, a ganglord, a hacker, and a banker join forces to run their own secret criminal empire based on a currency called GenCoin. Crooked secret agents and government forces enter the game either to take down this new era of American organized crime or make these tech-geniuses work for the Pentagon.

StartUp had a limited run but it presented an interesting picture of digital crime and the continuing debate on the misuse of advanced tech if it falls in the wrong hands.

1 Planet Of The Apps (2017)

A still from Planet of the Apps

Apple TV’s first original series Planet of the Apps is an unapologetic exercise in self-indulgence and was canceled after just one season. However, this reality series has its entertaining moments and can be seen as Shark Tank for mobile apps. Contestants get a minute to pitch app ideas to the celebrity judge panel that includes actresses Jessica Alba and Gwyneth Paltrow, singer will.i.am, and entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk.

The expected drama aside, the show does offer a few useful tips for app developers on how to pitch and sell their ideas.

NEXT: Top 10 Silicon Valley Episodes, According to IMDb

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About The Author Shaurya Thapa (228 Articles Published)

Hailing from and based in India, Shaurya Thapa harbors interests in freelance journalism, cultural diversity, and critical analyses on films and TV of varied genres.

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10 Shows To Watch If You Liked Silicon Valley

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