watchworthy presents

The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time 

Ranker TV
Updated January 13, 2020 313 votes 43 voters 34 items

List Rules Vote up the best limited series from HBO

The best HBO miniseries tell their tale in a limited number of episodes, but that doesn't mean their impact is less than a long-running show. From period dramas to speculative fiction, HBO miniseries continue to hold their weight as television events in a world that is more and more frequently split by streaming and network attentions.

Since their first miniseries in 1979, The Seekers, HBO has turned out many beautiful historical drama limited series. The much-acclaimed 2001 Band Of Brothers was about the drama of war while From Earth To The Moon awed audiences with its special effects and accurate telling of the Apollo program. It isn't just docudramas that fill HBO's miniseries programming schedule, there are also adaptations of novels, such as Sharp Objects, Olive Kitteridge, and Empire Falls. The adaptation of the play Angels in America not only won a Golden Globe and an Emmy for its category, but stars Al Pacino and Meryl Streep each won a Golden Globe and an Emmy for their performances in the miniseries as well.

With so many great miniseries and limited series from HBO, which stand out the most? Vote up the best miniseries to air on HBO.

Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
1
Band of Brothers is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Scott Grimes, Damian Lewis, Ron Livingston

Premiered: 2001

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Action/Adventure, Drama, Military, Adventure film, + more

Band of Brothers is a 2001 American WWII drama miniseries based on historian Stephen E. Ambrose's 1992 non-fiction book of the same name. The executive producers were Steven Spielberg and Tom ...more
2
Chernobyl is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Jared Harris, Stellan Skarsgård, Emily Watson

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Historical drama

Chernobyl (HBO, 2019) is an American-British historical drama television miniseries created by Craig Mazin. In April 1986, an explosion at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the USSR becomes ...more
3
The Pacific is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Hugh Ambrose, Ed Tracy

Premiered: 2010

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, War film, Drama

The Pacific is a 2010 television series produced by HBO, Seven Network Australia, Sky Movies, Playtone and DreamWorks that premiered in the United States on 14 March 2010. The series is a ...more
4
John Adams is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Paul Giamatti, Laura Linney, John Dossett

Premiered: 2008

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Drama, Historical drama

John Adams is a 2008 American television miniseries chronicling most of U.S. President John Adams' political life and his role in the founding of the United States. Paul Giamatti portrays John ...more
5
Sharp Objects is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Amy Adams, Patricia Clarkson, Eliza Scanlen

Genres (Tv): Thriller

Sharp Objects (HBO, 2018) is an American miniseries created by Marti Nixon, based on the novel by Gillian Flynn. Fresh out of a psych hospital for her years of self-harm, crime reporter Camille ...more
6
The Night Of is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
The Night Of John Turturro, Riz Ahmed, Bill Camp

Genres (Tv): Crime drama

The Night Of (HBO, 2016) is an American eight-part crime drama television miniseries created by Richard Price and Steven Zaillian, based on the British TV series Criminal Justice. After a night ...more
7
The Young Pope is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
The Young Pope Jude Law, Diane Keaton, Silvio Orlando

Genres (Tv): Drama

The Young Pope (2016, HBO) is an English-language Italian drama television series. Jude Law stars as .Pope Pius XIII (born Lenny Belardo), the newly elected Pope and former Archbishop of New ...more
8
Elizabeth I is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Helen Mirren, Jeremy Irons, Hugh Dancy

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Drama, Television special

Elizabeth I is a two-part 2005 British historical drama television miniseries directed by Tom Hooper, written by Nigel Williams, and starring Helen Mirren as Elizabeth I of England. The ...more
9
Catherine the Great is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Helen Mirren, Jason Clarke, Joseph Quinn

Genres (Tv): Drama

Catherine the Great (Sky Atlantic/HBO, 2019) is a British-American television miniseries following the life of Catherine The Great.
10
Angels in America is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Angels in America is a 2003 HBO miniseries adapted from the play of the same name by Tony Kushner. Kushner adapted his original text for the screen, and Mike Nichols directed. Set in 1985, the ...more
11
Generation Kill is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Alexander Skarsgård, James Ransone, Lee Tergesen

Premiered: 2008

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, War film, Action/Adventure, Drama, Military, + more

This series is a British-American seven-part television miniseries produced for HBO, based on the 2004 book of the same name by Evan Wright about his experience as an embedded reporter with the ...more
12
Parade's End is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Benedict Cumberbatch, Rebecca Hall, Rupert Everett

Premiered: 2012

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, War film, Drama, Action film

Parade's End is a five-part BBC/HBO/VRT television serial, which is an adaptation of the tetralogy of novels of the same name by Ford Madox Ford. It premiered on BBC Two on 24 August 2012, and ...more
13
Gunpowder is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Kit Harington, Peter Mullan, Mark Gatiss

Premiered: 2017

Genres (Tv): Period Drama, Action Thriller

Gunpowder (HBO, 2017) is a British historical period drama television series developed by Ronan Bennett, Kit Harington, and Daniel West. British activist Guy Fawkes (Tom Cullen) and a group of ...more
14
Empire Falls is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Paul Newman, Helen Hunt, Ed Harris

Premiered: 2005

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Drama

Empire Falls is a two-part mini-series that aired on HBO in 2005. It was based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name which was written by Richard Russo. It was nominated for and ...more
15
Years and Years is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Emma Thompson, Rory Kinnear, T'Nia Miller

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Drama

Years and Years (BBC One/HBO, 2019) is a British television drama series created and written by Russell T Davies. Vivienne Rook (Emma Thompson) is an outspoken celebrity-turned-political figure ...more
16
The New Pope is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Jude Law, John Malkovich, Mark Ivanir

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Drama

The New Pope (Sky Atlantic/HBO, 2020) is an Italian and Spanish drama television miniseries created and directed by Paolo Sorrentino. The limited series continues the story of 2016's The Young ...more
17
Mosaic is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Sharon Stone, Garrett Hedlund, Frederick Weller

Genres (Tv): Mystery, Drama, Crime

Mosaic (HBO, 2018) is an American television murder mystery series directed by Steven Soderbergh. In conjunction with the interactive app that lets users investigate the mystery, the show ...more
18
The Casual Vacancy is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Monica Dolan, Michael Gambon, Keeley Hawes

Premiered: 2015

Genres (Tv): Crime, Drama, Mystery

The Casual Vacancy (HBO, 2015) is a British miniseries directed by Jonny Campbell, based on the novel by J. K. Rowling. The citizens of the small British town of Pagford fight for the spot on ...more
19
From the Earth to the Mo... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Tom Hanks, Nick Searcy, Lane Smith

Premiered: 1998

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Docudrama, Drama, Documentary, History

From the Earth to the Moon is a twelve-part HBO television miniseries co-produced by Ron Howard, Brian Grazer, Tom Hanks, and Michael Bostick, telling the story of the landmark Apollo ...more
20
Mildred Pierce is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Kate Winslet, Evan Rachel Wood, Guy Pearce

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Drama

Mildred Pierce is a five-part miniseries that first aired on HBO on March 27, 2011. Adapted from James M. Cain's 1941 novel of the same name, it was directed by Todd Haynes, and starred Kate ...more
21
Mrs. Fletcher is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Kathryn Hahn, Jackson White, Casey Wilson

Genres (Tv): Comedy

Mrs. Fletcher (HBO, 2019) is an American comedy television series based on the novel by Tom Perrotta. A single mom (Kathryn Hahn) whose son has moved out for college looks to begin a new life on ...more
22
All the Rivers Run is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Parker Stevenson, Gus Mercurio, Bud Tingwell

Premiered: 1983

Genres (Tv): Miniseries, Drama

All the Rivers Run is an Australian television miniseries from 1983, starring Sigrid Thornton and John Waters. The miniseries is based on the Australian historical novel by Nancy Cato, first ...more
23
The Far Pavilions is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
The Far Pavilions Ben cross, Amy Irving, Omar sharif

Premiered: 1984

The Far Pavillions (HBO, 1984) is a six-part miniseries which first aired on HBO in 1984. It was HBO's first miniseries and is based on the book of the same name by M.M. Kaye. ...more

24
Show Me a Hero is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Oscar Isaac, Bob Balaban, Jim Belushi

Premiered: 2015

Genres (Tv): Drama, Biography

Show Me a Hero (HBO, 2015) is a American miniseries directed by Paul Haggis, based on the nonfiction book by Lisa Belkin. Yonkers' Mayor Nick Wasicsko (Oscar Isaac) takes offices in 1987 and has ...more
25
Our Boys is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best HBO Miniseries Of All Time
Shlomi Elkabetz, Johnny Arbid, Adam Gabay

Premiered: 2019

Genres (Tv): Drama, Miniseries

Our Boys (HBO, 2019) is an American-Israeli television miniseries created by Hagai Levi, Joseph Cedar, and Tawfik Abu-Wael. It focuses on telling the story of the kidnapping and murder of ...more