The 17 Biggest HBO Moments of 2017

It’s been quite a year. To send 2017 out with a bang, we’re revisiting some of the most unforgettable moments, episodes and films featured this year on HBO. Warning: Spoilers ahead.


1. January 7: Bright Lights gave a glimpse into the lives of Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds.

An intimate portrait of the legendary mother-daughter duo that came just after both unexpectedly passed away, the documentary provided a candid look at a relationship that was as complicated as it was loving.

2. February 12: John Oliver tried to get President Trump’s attention with Catheter Cowboy ads.

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver took a new approach with its appeals to the president, running educational commercials on the channel the commander-in-chief has repeatedly admitted to watching the most: Fox News.

3. February 19: Big Little Lies became the drama you didn’t know you needed.

An inventive, female-driven series with a little bit of murder mystery and unbelievable star power, Big Little Lies proved that stories focused on women shouldn’t be dismissed.

4. March 5: The Girls pregnancy no one was expecting.

The final season of Girls had its share of big moments, but the reveal that Hannah was pregnant was undoubtedly the most memorable. To complicate matters, the news was delivered to her by none other than Patrick Wilson’s Joshua, who was last seen in Season 2.

5. March 11: Mommy Dead and Dearest stunned with an unthinkable story.

One of HBO’s most watched docs of the year, Mommy Dead and Dearest told the stranger-than-fiction story of Dee Dee Blanchard’s murder by her daughter Gypsy Rose. The first few minutes of the film included a mind-blowing reveal guaranteed to make you say, “Wait, what?”

6. May 14: Silicon Valley’s Jian-Yang created the ultimate foodspotting app.

Jian-Yang’s perfectly ridiculous “Shazam for food” app with one single function — identifying if something is a hotdog or not — was so beloved, an actual, functional app was created.

7. May 28: Selina Meyer dealt with the biggest blow to her ego yet.

Out of elected office, Selina Meyer was completely out of her element in Season 6 of Veep, and the results were recognizably fresh and razor-sharp. Plus, Julia Louis-Dreyfus made history when the the actor earned her a sixth consecutive Emmy win — setting the record for most awards won for a single role.

8. June 4: The Leftovers series finale gave closure while still letting some of the mystery be.

Kevin and Nora’s relationship was a driving force of this unique series, and seeing them reunite was emotional and cathartic. Nora gave Kevin, and the audience, the answers they needed, and it was just the kind of ending the show, and its fans, earned.

9. July 30: Spencer Strasmore came. He crashed. He conquered.

Sometimes the shortest moments can make the biggest impressions.This season of Ballers saw Spencer (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson) make an epic entrance in a way only he could: at a Las Vegas monster truck rally.

10. August 6: Game of Thrones gave fans the reunion they’d been waiting for.

It was a moment almost seven years in the making. After seasons apart, sisters Arya and Sansa Stark (and real life best friends Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner) were back together on screen. It was worth the wait… and gave viewers all the feels.

11. August 14: VICE News Tonight captured unforgettable footage in Charlottesville.

Reporter Elle Reeve was on site for the tragic and violent clash in Charlottesville, Virginia. Vice News Tonight footage featured both sides of the protests, the fatal car crash, and extensive interviews with white supremacist leader Chris Cantwell.

12. August 27: Issa got an eyeful.

Season 2 of Insecure saw Issa Dee’s “hoe-tation” meet its breaking point when something happened that she was, to put it lightly, not ready for. The shocking incident was followed by frank discussions on the representations of female and male sexuality on television.

13. September 10: David Simon and George Pelecanos took viewers back in time with The Deuce.

From The Wire to Treme, David Simon and George Pelecanos had already solidified their maverick status. Their female-focused, sex positive drama about New York’s sex-trade industry in the ‘70s reminded viewers why they’re two of our greatest storytellers.

14. September 16: Boxing's biggest stars finally met their match, in each other.

The face-off between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin was a long time coming. But the in-ring action and even scorecards had fans wanting even more.

15. October 8: Larry David came back after six years — and was exactly the same.

Curb Your Enthusiasm returned to HBO, proving once and for all that although Larry David might not be the hero we need, he’s definitely the one we deserve.

16. November 18: Night of Too Many Stars gave non-stop laughs for a great cause.

Hosted by Jon Stewart, the annual benefit for autism had everything: a Daily Show reunion, Star Wars spoilers, and Billy Joel. All while raising money for thousands of individuals, families and communities across the country.

17. November 20: Baltimore Rising kept the city in the spotlight.

From The Wire’s Sonja Sohn, Baltimore Rising detailed the aftermath of Freddie Gray’s death, and the struggle faced by the city. The documentary was all the more powerful for its focus on the people behind the movement.