It must be nice having an Amazon Prime membership. Access to free shipping and a range of movies and television—what more could you ask for? How about a lineup of documentary shows? Yeah, Amazon has that. Though most people seek out humor, suspense, or something else along those lines in a great TV series, that's not to say we can't all enjoy a documentary show here and there, and you can find some good ones with Prime.
Whether you're looking for a trip through America's national parks (The National Parks) or an extensive history lesson in jazz (Jazz), you'll find quite a few popular documentary series on Amazon Prime. Whatever it is, you'll be learning at the least—and nothing beats good education.
So, take a lesson in something you've never heard of or catch up on your favorite series from the list below. Also be sure to vote up the ones you like to help determine the best documentary shows on Prime. You can also add any that aren't already on the list.
Premiered: 1974Nova is a United States popular science television series produced by WGBH Boston. It is broadcast on Public Broadcasting Service in the U.S., and in more than 100 other countries. The series has won... more
Premiered: September 27, 2009The National Parks: America's Best Idea is a 2009 documentary film for television, DVD and companion book by director/producer Ken Burns and producer/writer Dayton Duncan which features the United... more
Premiered: January 15, 2015The New Yorker Presents (Amazon Video, 2015) is a documentary television series. A groundbreaking new series that brings America's most award-winning magazine, The New Yorker, to the screen with... more
Premiered: October 4, 1988American Experience is a television program airing on the Public Broadcasting Service Public television stations in the United States. The program airs documentaries, many of which have won awards,... more
Premiered: March 22, 2007This American Life is an American television series based on the radio program of the same name. Like the radio program, the series is hosted by Ira Glass. The series premiered on March 22, 2007. Two... more
Premiered: 2001Jazz is a 2000 documentary miniseries, directed by Ken Burns. It was broadcast on PBS in 2001, and was released on DVD and VHS in January 2, 2001 later that year by the same company. Its... more
The Dust BowlThe Dust Bowl is a documentary film directed by Ken Burns which aired on Public Broadcasting System on November 18 and 19, 2012. The four-part miniseries recounts the impact of the Dust Bowl on the... more
The Story of the JewsThe Story of the Jews is a television series, in five parts, presented by British historian Simon Schama. It was broadcast in the United Kingdom on BBC Two in September 2013 and in the United States... more
Premiered: October 28, 2005I Shouldn't Be Alive is a documentary television series that airs on multiple networks in the United States, Canada, the U.K., the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, India, Iran, Pakistan, South... more
Premiered: August 21, 2006When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts is a 2006 documentary film directed by Spike Lee about the devastation of New Orleans, Louisiana due to the failure of the levees during Hurricane... more
Kingdom of DavidKingdom of David was a part of the Empire Series of history documentaries for the Public Broadcasting Service Public television stations produced by Oregon Public Broadcasting in joint venture with... more
Premiered: April 25, 2010How the Universe Works is a mini-series that originally aired on the Discovery Channel April 25, 2010 to May 24, 2010. The first and third seasons were narrated by Mike Rowe and the second by Erik... more
Premiered: November 13, 2012Mankind: The Story of All of Us is an American documentary television series on History that premiered on November 13, 2012 in the US and the UK, and on November 14, 2012 in Asia. The broadcast is... more
The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.The African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross is an award-winning six-part Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) public television series written and presented by Harvard University scholar Henry Louis... more
- 27American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story (Amazon Video, 2017) is an American documentary series directed by Richard Lopez. A combination of interviews, archival footage, and cinematic re-enactments,... more
Premiered: July 1, 2016All or Nothing (Amazon Video, 2016) is a sports documentary series. An unprecedented inside look at the lives of players, coaches, and owners of a franchise over the course of an entire NFL season.... more
- 210Long Strange Trip is a documentary film about the rock band the Grateful Dead, directed by Amir Bar-Lev. The film features newly conducted interviews with living band members and friends including... more
Premiered: 2019Lorena (Amazon Video, 2019) is an American documentary television series. The limited series examines the 1993 assault and subsequent court case involving John and Lorena Bobbitt through the lens of... more
Premiered: 2019This Giant Beast That Is the Global Economy (Amazon Video, 2019) is an American documentary television series. Host Kal Penn, actor and former White House Associate Director of Public Engagement,... more
- Ted Bundy: Falling for a Killer (Amazon, 2020) is an American documentary series produced by Trish Wood, Pam McNair, Michael Kot, and Betty Orr. After years of silence, Ted Bundy’s long-term... more
Premiered: 2020The Last Narc (Amazon Video, 2020) is a documentary television series directed by Tiller Russell. The Last Narc is a four-part docuseries examining in detail the 1985 kidnap and murder of DEA Agent... more
Premiered: October 29, 2020The Challenge: ETA (Prime Video, 2020) is a Spanish documentary series. The eight-episode series follows the fight of Spanish military police against the terrorist group for the independence of the... more
Premiered: January 29, 2021The Great Escapists (Prime Video, 2021) is an American documentary series. The six part series follows Richard Hammond and Troy Belleci as they use their engineering and scientific skills to not only... more
Premiered: March 12, 2021Making Their Mark (Amazon Prime, 2021) is an Australian reality sports series. The series takes an inside look and follows six Australian Football League teams throughout one of the most challenging... more
Lauren Greenfield examines materialism, celebrity culture, and social status and reflects on the desire to be wealthy at any cost.