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HBO Max added a shuffle button for indecisive viewers

Published Mar 24th, 2022 7:13PM EDT
HBO Max now has a shuffle button.
Image: HBO Max

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Over the past year, HBO Max has become one of the most serious threats to Netflix’s throne. Millions of new subscribers signed up in 2021 as huge blockbusters hit the streaming service on the same day they came to theaters. HBO Max also debuted some superb original shows, such as Station Eleven and Made for Love. But as impressive as the HBO Max library might be, it’s still catching up with Netflix and other streaming services when it comes to features. To that point, HBO Max just added a shuffle button this week.

HBO Max now has a shuffle button

As Variety notes, Netflix first introduced its “Play Something” feature last April. If you hit the button, Netflix will automatically begin playing a TV show or movie on your watchlist or that the service thinks you will like based on your viewing history. It could be virtually anything, and you can continue shuffling until you find something you want to watch.

On HBO Max, the shuffle feature is slightly more limited.

Rather than shuffling through the entire library, the new shuffle button on HBO Max is only available for 45 select shows. When you go to the pages for those shows, you’ll see a shuffle button. When you click it, HBO Max will start playing a random episode.

“With HBO Max as home to the greatest array of series, movies, and specials for audiences of all ages, picking an episode of your favorite show isn’t always an easy task,” WarnerMedia said in a statement. “With an added element of serendipity, selecting the shuffle button lets you kick your feet up and start watching faster.”

At the moment, the shuffle feature on HBO Max is only available on the desktop interface. You won’t be able to shuffle from a mobile device or smart TV.

Which shows have the shuffle button?

Here are all 45 shows on HBO Max that give users the option to shuffle episodes:

  • A World of Calm
  • Adventure Time
  • Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
  • Apple & Onion
  • Chappelle’s Show
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog
  • Craig of the Creek
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm
  • Ed, Ed and Eddy
  • ER
  • Flight of the Conchords
  • Fresh Prince
  • Friends
  • Full House
  • Great Pottery Throwdown
  • Hot Ones
  • How It Really Happened
  • Impractical Jokers
  • Key & Peele
  • Looney Tunes
  • Martin
  • Mike & Molly
  • Regular Show
  • Reno 911!
  • Rick & Morty
  • Robot Chicken
  • Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!
  • Selena + Chef
  • Sesame Street
  • South Park
  • Teen Titans Go!
  • The Amazing World of Gumball
  • The Big Bang Theory
  • The Boondocks
  • The Mentalist
  • The Middle
  • The Nanny
  • The Office (U.K.)
  • The Shot: Uninterrupted
  • Tom and Jerry
  • Total Dramarama
  • Two and a Half Men
  • We Bare Bears
  • Whose Line is it Anyway
  • Young Sheldon

As you can see, most of the shows are sitcoms and cartoons. Most of these shows don’t feature strict, serialized plots, so you won’t be lost if you jump in halfway through. Also, if you’ve already seen every episode of Friends half a dozen times, it might be better to let HBO Max pick an episode rather than scroll through every season.

More HBO Max coverage: For more HBO Max news, check out our coverage of the latest new HBO Max movies and series to watch.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.

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