Movies and TV Shows with Milwaukee Connections to Stream While You’re at Home

Movies and TV Shows with Milwaukee Connections to Stream While You’re at Home

Because somewhere in between cooking shows and Netflix binging, you might miss life in Milwaukee.

With all of us practicing social distancing (read: staying the heck home), are you looking for a glimpse of Milwaukee’s appearance or mention on the silver screen? Or how our fair city has managed to snag positive air time (in other words, no “Making of a Murder” or true-crime shows) in television-series’ settings or episodes of documentary-type shows?

From Antiques Roadshow to That ‘70s show, here are 10 ways to stream Milwaukee right now:


That ‘70s Show

Yes, this former Fox comedy is technically set in fictitious “Point Place, Wisconsin,” designed to be a faux Green Bay ‘burb between 1976-1980, but that’s only two hours from Milwaukee and close enough. Spot Ashton Kutcher (as “Michael Kelso,” with current wife Mila Kunis as his co-star) sport bell-bottom jeans and all the shenanigans many of us will, ahem, identify with, as acted out by six teenage friends.

How to Watch: stream on Netflix (all eight seasons)


Bridesmaids

In this 2011 film, SNL alum Kristen Wiig’s “Annie” character’s apartment is on KK in Bay View (and, side note, looks like it’s atop a hill when it’s actually not) and while she bounces between Chicago and Milwaukee to fulfill her bridesmaid’s duties for her friend’s wedding (“Lillian,” starring Maya Rudolph), we like the Milwaukee references best. But not the “Oh, you live in Milwaukee? Oh, I’m sorry,” one.

How to Watch: stream on Hulu


Happy Days

Set in Milwaukee during the mid-‘50s to mid-‘60s, this ABC sitcom ran from 1974 to 1984 and featured the Cunninghams, anchored by stay-at-home mom Marion and father Howard, who owns a hardware store. True to the period, one character is drafted by the U.S. Army and there’s a lot of fixing cars” going on. Maybe you can’t go take a selfie with “the Bronze Fonz” on the Riverwalk right now but you can watch episodes of Happy Days.

How to Watch: stream on CBS or stream on Amazon Prime (season 2 only)


Laverne & Shirley

Could this former ABC comedy be any more Milwaukeean than two girls (“Laverne DeFazio” and “Shirley Feeney,” played by Penny Marshall and Cindy Williams) working at the fictitious Shotz Brewery? As a Happy Days spinoff, the show — set in 1958 to 1967, it aired from 1976 to 1983 — followed the adventures of two female acquaintances of “Fonzie.”

How to Watch: stream on Sling (seasons 3, 6, 7 and 8 only)


Around the Corner with John McGivern

A perennial favorite for any Wisconsin enthusiast, this PBS show has honed in on quite a few Milwaukee neighborhoods and ‘burbs, including New Berlin and Milwaukee’s Story Hill. Check out the episodes for tips on where to eat, explore and shop once social-distancing ends (don’t worry, it will).

How to Watch: stream on PBS


Handcrafted America

In the 10th episode of the first season of this show (which aired on the INSP network) host Jill Wagner visits the owners of Bay View’s Brass Rooster and Hen House (John and Kate McLaughlin). The show aired in 2016 and the episode, titled “Millinery, Longbows and Surfboards,” also featured California artists who crafted surfboards out of exotic woods.

How to Watch: stream on Amazon Prime


Antiques Roadshow

As fans of this PBS show well know, the hosts travel around the country in search of antiques and knick-knacks that people usually either inherited or scored for cheap at a garage sale. (It’s no fun to watch professional purveyors learn they made a killing, right?) In the “Vintage Milwaukee” episode (season 17, episode 23), which aired in 2013, the show looks into—15 years later—whether items appraised in Milwaukee 15 years ago have held their value. Among the items is a Tiffany lamp valued at $8,000-$15,000 in 1998…which jumped to $20,000-$30,000 in 2012.

How to Watch: stream on PBS


Weird Homes

If you grew up in Milwaukee, you likely remember folks whispering about “the witch’s house” in Fox Point. By now we know that the late Mary Nohl is one of the country’s most famed folk artists. The “Made with Passion” episode on the second season of Weird Homes, which aired in 1999 and features Nohl’s home and concrete sculptures, proves just that.

How to Watch: stream on Amazon Prime


Mr. 3000

Sad about the delayed start to the next Major League Baseball season? In this 2004 film, Bernie Mac plays “Stan Ross,” a Milwaukee Brewers sportsman who abruptly retires after his 3,000th hit during the 1995 playoffs. Aching to make a comeback at the age of 47, he emerges out of retirement to ace three more hits (due to a clerical error, only 2,997 were counted). Also starring in the film is Madison native Chris Noth (you know him as “Mr. Big” on Sex & the City).

How to Watch: stream on Amazon Prime


Milwaukee Blacksmith

One of Bay View’s many artisan-oriented businesses (Milwaukee Blacksmith, run by Kent Knapp and his three sons) snared some air time on the History Channel in 2016. If you missed those episodes, and have been thinking about taking a 101 instructional class at the shop, get your fix by streaming the show now.

How to Watch: stream on Amazon Prime (season 1 only)

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A seasoned writer, and a former editor at Milwaukee Home & Fine Living, Kristine Hansen launched her wine-writing career in 2003, covering wine tourism, wine and food pairings, wine trends and quirky winemakers. Her wine-related articles have published in Wine Enthusiast, Sommelier Journal, Uncorked (an iPad-only magazine), FoodRepublic.com, CNN.com and Whole Living (a Martha Stewart publication). She's trekked through vineyards and chatted up winemakers in many regions, including Chile, Portugal, California (Napa, Sonoma and Central Coast), Canada, Oregon and France (Bordeaux and Burgundy). While picking out her favorite wine is kind of like asking which child you like best, she will admit to being a fan of Oregon Pinot Noir and even on a sub-zero winter day won't turn down a glass of zippy Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.