The Good Lord Bird is Showtime’s latest drama, bringing to life the story of abolitionist John Brown. It premieres Sunday, October 4 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
If you don’t have cable or don’t have Showtime, here’s how you can watch The Good Lord Bird streaming online for free:
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Amazon Prime subscribers (Prime comes with a 30-day free trial) can watch all live and on-demand Showtime content on the Prime Showtime All-Access channel. You can try both Amazon Prime and the Showtime Channel at no cost with a free trial right here:
Watch Showtime on Amazon Prime
Once you’re signed up for the Prime Showtime All-Access Channel, you can watch The Good Lord Bird live or on-demand on the Amazon Video app on your Roku, Roku TV, Amazon Fire TV or Firestick, Apple TV, Chromecast, Nvidia Shield, Xiaomi, Echo Show or Echo Spot, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, various Smart TV’s, Android TV, iPhone, Android phone, iPad or Android tablet.
You can also watch on your computer via the Amazon website.
This is ultimately the same option as above, except you’ll watch on Showtime’s digital platforms instead of Amazon’s. Showtime’s streaming service, which includes all live and on-demand Showtime content, comes with a free 30-day trial:
Showtime Free Trial
Once you’re signed up for Showtime’s streaming service, you can watch The Good Lord Bird live or on-demand on your computer via the Showtime website, or on your phone (Android and iPhone compatible), tablet, Apple TV, Roku, Fire TV Stick, Xbox One, Smart TV, Facebook Portal TV or other compatible streaming device.
Showtime is available as an add-on to FuboTV’s main 100-plus-channel package. Both the main channel bundle and the Showtime add-on can be included in your free seven-day trial:
FuboTV Free Trial
Once signed up for FuboTV, you can watch The Good Lord Bird live or on-demand on the FuboTV app, which is available on your Roku, Roku TV, Amazon Fire TV or Firestick, Apple TV, Chromecast, Xbox One, Samsung Smart TV, Android TV, iPhone, Android phone, iPad or Android tablet.
You can also watch on your computer via the FuboTV website.
Whether you already have Hulu or you want to sign up for a new subscription, Showtime is available as an add-on to either Hulu or Hulu with Live TV. If you’re a new subscriber, you can start a free 30-day trial of regular Hulu plus the Showtime add-on:
Hulu Free Trial
Once signed up, you can watch The Good Lord Bird live or on-demand on the Hulu app, which is available on your Roku, Roku TV, Amazon Fire TV, or Firestick, Apple TV, Chromecast, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Samsung Smart TV, LG Smart TV, Android TV, iPhone, Android phone, iPad, or Android tablet.
Or you can watch on your computer via the Hulu website.
‘The Good Lord Bird’ Preview
This seven-party limited series stars Ethan Hawke (who is also an executive producer) as controversial abolitionist John Brown, but it is told from the point of view of Onion (Joshua Caleb Johnson), a fictional enslaved boy who becomes a member of Brown’s motley family of abolitionist soldiers during Bleeding Kansas – a time when the state was a battleground between pro- and anti-slavery forces – and eventually finds himself participating in the famous 1859 raid on the U.S. Armory at Harpers Ferry. Brown’s raid failed to initiate the slave revolt he intended but was the event that started the Civil War. The Good Lord Bird weaves a humorous, dramatic, and historical tapestry of Antebellum America, spotlighting the complicated and ever-changing racial, religious, and gender roles that make up the American identity.
The show is based on James McBride’s book of the same name. At the 2020 Television Critics Association winter press tour, he told critics that this is not your typical “white savior” story that the Black community so often sees in stories about their history.
“This is not the typical story of the white savior that comes to save African American people. This is the African American perspective on the point of view of — African American perspective on the white savior that comes to save us, and so it’s a lot different, and that’s why it’s so funny. It’s a story of caricature. And so Frederick Douglass is treated as an element of caricature. I personally am kind of tired of the ‘Go on. Go down….’ I don’t want to see stories like that, and I don’t want to read books like that. I want to read a book that informs me, and, also, I want to see something that informs me,” said McBride.
Hawke added that it was McBride’s wonderful book that drew him to the piece in the first place.
“What drew me to the period is James McBride’s book. I have no interest in and of itself just to arbitrarily start talking about the period. … James found a way to talk about this in a way that makes it extremely relevant and exciting. In a dialogue about Ferguson, for example, St. Louis, you can’t understand that in a vacuum. You have to understand our country and how we arrived at these places,” said Hawke. “And here we are in 2020, and all of the things that people are bristling up against each other about are not new. And James found a way to make us laugh and see our common humanity and see that we are all participating in something much bigger than our individuality and that it can be a unifying — storytelling can be powerfully unifying when we start to realize that all of our experiences aren’t as unique as we think.”
The series also stars Ellar Coltrane, Hubert Point-Du Jour, Beau Knapp, Nick Eversman, Jack Alcott, Mo Brings Plenty, David Morse, Steve Zahn, Wyatt Russell, Orlando Jones, and Daveed Diggs as Frederick Douglass.
The Good Lord Bird airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Showtime.
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