I would cancel HBO Max and Hulu this month — here's why

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It's the time of the month to consider canceling streaming services, as November is here and your holiday shopping budget could probably stand a little more here and there. As someone who likes to cut ties with services — I canceled Netflix and came back months later — I'm here to remind you that all of your favorite services are about to charge you again. 

As much as I love HBO Max (it's the best streaming service in our book), I'm looking at its November schedule with a bit of frustration. Now that the doors of The House of the Dragon have closed as we wait for season 2, they're not exactly offering a ton to replace it with. 

This is personally annoying because a few weeks ago — before HBO rolled out its Nov. 2022 list — I was singing another tune. Fortunately for HBO, the apparently leaked The Last of Us' HBO Max release date suggests we won't be waiting long for the service's next must-see series.

But with holiday shopping gnawing at all of our budgets, and Apple TV Plus' price hike (as well as the Disney Plus and Hulu price hikes), we can't ignore those monthly charges. So, I'm doing what I do at the start of every month at Tom's Guide, looking at the big lists of scheduled releases to see what the big streaming services are offering in November 2022 — and giving my recommendation for the streamer(s) to cut. 

As we do every month, we're breaking down what's new on Netflix, HBO Max, Apple TV Plus, Hulu and Disney Plus. We won't get into the stuff they already have, as it's impossible to guess what you have (and have not) already watched. 

Peacock and Paramount Plus are rising streaming services, but not for consideration for this list as they're just not as widespread. We're also skipping Amazon Prime Video, because it's less of a standalone service than a Prime membership perk. 

Should you cancel Apple TV Plus in November 2022?

Apple execs are likely bracing for cancelations, and they may not be blaming their content. An Apple TV Plus price hike tacked bumped up the price by $2 in the states and similar amount elsewhere, so that it now costs $6.99 / £6.99/$8.99 CAD/AU $9.99 per month. Yes, Apple TV Plus is now pricier than Peacock or Paramount Plus' ad-supported tiers.

Apple looks to start its month strong with prestige, dropping Causeway (Nov. 4), a new Original film starring Jennifer Lawrence and Brian Tyree Henry. Lawrence plays a war veteran having trouble re-adjusting to live in New Orleans while she deals with a brain injury caused by an IED explosion. 

That same day, Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me (Nov. 4) provides a behind the scenes look at the singer, songwriter, actress, producer, entrepreneur and activist's recent mental health journey. 

The Jim Henson Company's Slumberkins (Nov. 4) also debuts, giving new life to the emotional learning brand and its adorable Bigfoot, Unicorn, Sloth, Yak and Fox characters. Then, Mosquito Coast season 2 (also Nov. 4) dives into the Guatemalan jungle as Allie Fox (Justin Theroux) and his family look to escape from multiple forces, including cartels and the U.S. government.

Arguably the biggest Apple TV Plus release of November 2022 is Mythic Quest season 3 (Nov. 11), which returns to see how game developers Ian (Rob McElhenney) and Poppy (Charlotte Nicdao) fare running their own new studio. One of the best shows on Apple TV Plus without question, Mythic Quest is a funny ensemble cast series featuring the likes of Danny Pudi (Community) and F. Murray Abraham (The White Lotus season 2). We can't wait to see what it's like now that the Mythic Quest developers are at war with their former colleagues.

The family-friendly Circuit Breakers (Nov. 11) debuts this month, offering a sci-fi anthology series that you can share with the kids (sorry, Black Mirror). This series is all about a group of kids who experience reality-bending moments. One kid basically gets internal AR like a Terminator and one child can control their parents.

Apple's also getting into the holiday cheer with Spirited (Nov. 18), starring Ryan Reynolds and Will Ferrell. Clint Briggs (Reynolds) is his generation's Scrooge, who is visited by the Ghost of Christmas Present (Ferrell), and — get this — it's a musical. Octavia Spencer and Sunita Mani also feature.

Want something more adult? Apple's new action series Echo 3 (Nov. 23) comes from Academy Award winner Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty), and stars Luke Evans, Michiel Huisman and Jessica Ann Collins, who plays a scientist who goes missing. Her brother (Evans) and husband (Husiman) set out to track her down on the Colombia-Venezuela border.

My recommendation: While it's pricier than before, a returning favorite, an action series from a credible name, a holiday movie with Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds and a Jennifer Lawrence film make Apple's first new price tolerable.

Should you cancel HBO Max in November 2022?

Now that House of the Dragon is over, HBO Max's big series is The White Lotus season 2 (Nov. 7, 14, 21, 28). And as much as I am a fan of the latter, the first episode didn't exactly thrill me. So, that might influence my stance here, as the $9.99 (with ads) and $14.99 (ad-free) HBO Max feels a little lacking. 

Sesame Street season 53 (Nov. 3) arrives this month, and brings celebrities including Zazie Beetz, First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, Samuel L. Jackson, Brett Goldstein, Ava Duvernay and HAIM to the iconic set. That same day, kid-ults will celebrate Titans season 4 (Nov. 3), as the returning DC series finds the team dealing with a cult they met in Metropolis.

A reality TV powerhouse practically previews the HBO Max/Discovery Plus merger when Magnolia Table with Joanna Gaines season 7 (Nov. 4). Also arriving on Discovery Plus and the Magnolia app, this new season has recipes for homemade pasta, brisket sliders and much more. Gaines even wants to get audiences able to make their own waffle cones. 

More ideas for non-traditional Thanksgiving tables come to HBO Max in The Big Brunch (Nov. 10). Host and judge Dan Levy is joined by experts Sohla El-Waylly and Will Guidara in a series that looks to give room to "undiscovered culinary voices from every corner of the country."

Mindy Kaling's take on collegiate life is coming back with The Sex Lives of College Girls season 2 (Nov. 17). The co-eds get a little under-dressed for a winter party, and then enjoy rock-hard abs of their colleagues while trying to raise funds. Other topics explored include the definition of a "short king."

Up next, A Christmas Story Christmas (Nov. 17) will look to recreate the classic's magic, and Shaq (Nov. 23) is a docu-series about the NBA titan on and off the court. Then, Love, Lizzo (Nov. 24) provides a documentary-style view of the megastar's rise. And then, We're Here season 3 (Nov. 25) provides another trek with beloved drag queens Bob the Drag Queen, Eureka O'Hara and Shangela, as they spread the love in small-town America.

My recommendation: Unless you can't wait to finish The White Lotus season 2 or see the return of Titans or Sex Lives of College Girls, HBO Max feels a little not-Max this month.

Should you cancel Netflix in November 2022?

Netflix may seem light on Original shows this month, but that's more because it's all about new shows than returning favorites. And while we'd rather they have both, we're always ready to congratulate Netflix for trying something new. Those who want to make the most out of their Netflix subscription should check out my guide to the 5 shows on Netflix you should watch right now.

For example, Netflix's newest comedy is all about the business it basically killed: Blockbuster (Nov. 3). The new sitcom starring Randall Park, Melissa Fumero and J.B. Smoove is all about life in the last Blockbuster Video in America. And we're always ready to see more of Mr. Park, who always elevates the material.

That said, Netflix knows audiences love a good sequel, and so Enola Holmes 2 (Nov. 4) gives Millie Bobby Brown and Henry Cavill a chance to have a little more fun as the Holmes siblings (a welcome change of pace for the drama that Eleven and Geralt have gone through). 

Mystery box drama fans get to breathe a sigh of relief as Manifest season 4 part 1 (Nov. 4) brings the Flight 828 survivors back from death again, as Netflix saves the series from cancelation at NBC. This 'part 1' delivers the first 10 episodes of a super-sized 20-episode final season.

Bigger Netflix TV news comes with the long-awaited The Crown season 5 (Nov. 9). Not only will this season of the Royals drama cover the divorce of Prince Charles (Dominic West) and Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki), but also those of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson and Princess Anne and Mark Phillips. So, three divorces and Elizabeth Debicki looking exactly like Diana, and The Wire's McNulty as the man who will become king? This is all enough to get folks who haven't watched the series to give it a chance, too. Oh, and Imelda Staunton steps into the role of Queen Elizabeth II, succeeding Olivia Colman.

Then, we get Netflix's Teletubbies (Nov. 14), words that make me wonder about an impending apocalypse. Oh, and Manifest isn't the only show with passengers without answers, as the creators of Dark debut 1899 (Nov. 17). This mystery features a ship filled with European immigrants headed to New York, only to encounter a bizarre surprise with another ship full of migrants on the Atlantic.

Secrets will finally be revealed in Dead to Me season 3 (Nov. 17), which ends the black comedy's run. More follow-ups come from The Cuphead Show! Part 3 (Nov. 18) and The Great British Baking Show: Holidays: Season 5 (Nov. 18). 

Love your high school drama? Elite season 6 (Nov. 18) brings more of the tense class-warfare in one of Spain's most-elite private schools. 

And when it comes to big IP, Netflix is tickling our nostalgia with Wednesday (Nov. 23), starring Jenna Ortega (Scream 2022). The show looks to be very much about its titular character's generation, as she's been kicked out of Nancy Reagan High School for enacting revenge on her brother's behalf. And she's on her way to the school where her parents met. Speaking of her parents, the casting of Luis Guzmán as Gomez Addams is amazing (Fred Armisen plays Uncle Fester? Not so much.)

Those who love their Netflix true crime docs ripped from the headlines will likely devour the documentary film Ghislaine Maxwell: Filthy Rich (Nov. 25) on Black Friday. The film looks to "tell the definitive story" of Jeffrey Epstein accomplice, who hasn't always gotten as much attention as he did. 

Then, close out the end of the Crime Scene: The Texas Killing Fields (Nov. 29), as the series returns to see how some refuse to let unsolved murders in the 1980's and 1991 in Texas go cold.

My recommendation: With multiple returning favorites, new shows that have us interested and more true crime? Netflix has a strong November at hand.

Should you cancel Hulu in November 2022?

Hulu (starting at $7.99 per month) now costs more than before, though cord-cutters will probably stick around for Abbott Elementary and other programming that the likes of Sling TV don't have. 

And Hulu starts off November by feeding us more real life horror, with God Forbid: The Sex Scandal That Brought Down a Dynasty (Nov. 1) story of the pool boy who became intertwined with the family of Evangelical icon Jerry Falwell Jr — by entering an affair with both Falwell's wife and the man himself. 

Then, Dreaming Walls: Inside the Chelsea Hotel (Nov. 3) offers a documentary view of the iconic New York hotel. This, unfortunately, is where the big Hulu exclusives run cold. That is unless you're hyped for Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War's premiere (Nov. 4) from Viz, All Rise season 3A (Nov. 9) from OWN, Where is Private Dulaney? (Nov. 16) a true crime docuseries about a Marine's mom looking for answers and Dragons: The Nine Realms season 4 (Nov. 17).

The next big release is Fleishman is in Trouble (Nov. 17), which is one of the FX shows that's only on Hulu. We still find that as weird as you do. This series, which features Jesse Eisenberg in the titular role as a recently-divorced forty-something  who has to get into dating apps — all the while raising his 11-and-9-year-old kids, because their mother went missing. This adaptation of Taffy Brodesser-Akner's praised novel of the same name, and co-stars include Claire Danes, Lizzy Caplan and Adam Brody. Personally, I'm all in. I can tell why others might not be. 

Then, a bunch of recent theatrical releases come to streaming. My Old School (Nov. 17) hits Hulu, starring Alan Cumming as Brandon Lee, a true character of a human, who tricked a school in Glasgow, Scotland into believing he was someone else. The Forgiven (Nov. 18) stars Jessica Chastain and Ralph Fiennes in a class-driven drama that Matt Smith appears in as well. Dual (Nov. 20) stars Karen Gillan in a sci-fi drama where Sarah (Gillan) deals with the miracle of a second chance at life — and the clone that was supposed to replace her.

The theatrical-to-Hulu path continues with The Immaculate Room (Nov. 25), where couple Mike (Emile Hirsch) and Kate (Kate Bosworth) suffer each other's company for 50 days in a single room to win 5 million dollars.

Parents afraid of sending their kids off to college will have more to worry about with the limited docuseries Death in the Dorms (Nov. 21), an ABC News and Hulu joint-release. 

Lastly, let's look at two interesting Hulu originals. Kumail Nanjiani stars in Welcome to Chippendales (Nov. 22), which debuts with two episodes (airing on Disney Plus internationally). This true-crime series tracks the rise of the all-male stripping business run by Somen “Steve” Banerjee (Nanjiani), and the war for control of the empire.

Families that already know about The Croods: Family Tree, or have season 5 (Nov. 25) circled on their calendars, likely won't cancel Hulu. 

Last up, Planet Sex with Cara Delevingne (Nov. 29) finds the actress/model exploring sexuality across the human experience, and sharing some of her own stories.

My recommendation: Welcome to Chippendales and Fleishman is in Trouble look interesting, but Hulu's mostly filled with from-the-theater releases that don't do much for us.

Should you cancel Disney Plus in November 2022?

Disney Plus' November arrives packed with strong offerings, seemingly arranged to get in our good graces before the Disney Plus price hike in December. For now, it costs $7.99 / £7.99 / $11.99CAD / AU $11.99 per month. The U.S. price goes up to $10.99 if you're not willing to watch ads, though you can keep the $7.99 per month price if you're OK with ads.

Andor (Nov. 2, 9, 16, 23), the best show on Disney Plus, as well as The Mysterious Benedict Society and The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers air new episodes on Wednesdays, and you'll get more Dancing with the Stars on Mondays. The first Wednesday also delivers Donna Hay Christmas (Nov. 2), as Disney Plus gets into cooking content. 

Then, Zootopia+ (Nov. 9) delivers animated shorts based on the popular animated movie:

That same day, a five-episode premiere of The Montaners (Nov. 9) re-introduces Latin music icon Ricardo Montaner and his family.

Do you remember that Disney Plus also includes National Geographic content? Thor himself is here to remind us, as Limitless with Chris Hemsworth (Nov. 16) finds the super-buff actor looking to find ways to be healthier and live longer. Jessica Chastain is seen in the below trailer.

Tim Allen's Santa, Scott Calvin, returns in The Santa Clauses (Nov. 16) a six-episode limited series that finds this Saint Nick at work — trying to find his successor and retire. And right when the Christmas he was to spend with his family was going well, it doesn't. Scott learns he picked the wrong new Santa, and he has to save the elves. Kal Penn co-stars, and Elizabeth Mitchell, Eric Lloyd and David Krumholtz reprise their roles. Much like that Christmas Story sequel, we wonder who asked for this. 

Disney Plus continues its foray into live-streamed events, though, with Elton John Live: Farewell from Dodger Stadium. This is the iconic musician's final North American show, and there will even be a red carpet event. 

The biggest Disney Plus November 2022 releases are staggered at the tail end, though, right around Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Disenchanted (Nov. 24) is the long-awaited Enchanted sequel that adds Maya Rudolph to the already strong cast of Amy Adams, Patrick Dempsey, James Mardsen and Idina Menzel. 

Next up, the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special (Nov. 25) looks to deliver the feels and laughs, as Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) deals with a holiday season without Gamora. Fellow Guardians Mantis (Pom Klementieff) and Drax (Dave Bautista) know just how to cheer him up: kidnapping Kevin Bacon.

Then, Lucasfilm icon Willow (Nov. 30) gets a sequel series with plenty of younger stars supporting Warwick Davis' titular sorceror. Princess Kit (Ruby Cruz) and knight-in-training Jade (Erin Kellyman) look like highlights.

My recommendation: Disney Plus delivers with more from beloved series, along with a live Elton John concert, the end of Andor and a Chris Hemsworth series.

Streaming services in November: Highlights this month

Swipe to scroll horizontally
ServiceNoteworthy shows and moviesMonthly price
Apple TV PlusMythic Quest season 3, Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me, Spirited, Causeway, Echo 3, $6.99 / £6.99 / AU$9.99
Disney PlusDisenchanted, Willow, Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, Elton John Live: Farewell from Dodger Stadium and more Andor$7.99 / £7.99 / AU$11.99
HBO MaxThe White Lotus season 2 (continuing), A Christmas Story Christmas, The Sex Lives of College Girls season 2 and Love, Lizzo$9.99 with ads, $14.99 without ads
NetflixThe Crown season 5, Blockbuster, Enola Holmes 2, Manifest season 4 part 1, Wednesday, 1899, Ghislaine Maxwell: Filthy Rich$15.49 / £10.99 / AU$16.99 for Standard
HuluFleishman is in Trouble, Welcome to Chippendales, God Forbid: The Sex Scandal That Brought Down a Dynasty$7.99 with ads, $14.99 without ads

The two streaming services I'd cut this month are:

I liked The White Lotus as much as the next person, but I'm not thrilled with HBO Max's November. Sex Lives of College Girls is not the kind of show you need to be watching week to week, and can be binged in December. 

I'd also cancel Hulu (if I didn't need it for Abbott) as Fleishman is in Trouble and Welcome to Chippendales don't exactly feel like shows you build a month around. But those are the service's two big originals, as much of its releases are from-the-theaters drops. 

As always, folks, your mileage may vary. These are just my suggestions. Just make sure you're making the most of the services you're paying for.

Next: HBO Max vs Hulu: Which $1.99 Black Friday streaming deal wins?

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.

  • sjdubreuil
    admin said:
    Looking to save money on your streaming service bills? We do a deep dive into which ones you should cancel

    Forget canceling Netflix, I'd cancel HBO Max and Hulu right now : Read more
    As far as Disney+, consider watching the first 3 seasons of "The Orville". It is an underrated Sci-Fi series that came over from Hulu. Don't let the fact that it's Seth MacFarlane's creation throw you off. It's not a silly comedy in space. It has humor for sure, but it's thoughtful, well-written stories with deep character development and good special effects. Who knew that MacFarlane was such a SciFi movie/series fan since he was a child? There is a very loyal fan base, including myself, who are hoping for a 4th season to be made. Give it a try, you won't be sorry!