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The best Netflix original series right now (July 2022)

Back in the day, the issue with so many hundreds of channels was that it became difficult to filter through the noise and find quality shows to watch. However, even with Netflix, you’ll find an extensive library that can still seem overwhelming. How could you possibly decide what to watch while you’re waiting for your favorite series to return?

We’re here to help with that. We have spent hours upon hours watching TV, reading reviews, and conducting extensive research to determine the best Netflix original series right now. From recent additions like Heartstopper to Emmy-nominated shows like Unorthodox, under-the-radar favorites like The Last Kingdom and long-running series like Grace and Frankie, these are all shows that made their debut on Netflix over the last almost decade, and each is worth looking into.

If you want to know the latest additions to the Netflix library, be sure to check out our list of what’s new on Netflix this month, the best movies on Netflix, and the best shows on Netflix.

Recently added to Netflix

Heartstopper (2022) new

Heartstopper
85 %
8.8/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Drama
Cast Kit Connor, Joe Locke, William Gao
Created by Alice Oseman
Heartstopper is a British coming-of-age story, and Alice Oseman wrote the webcomic and graphic novel on which the show is based, as well as the show itself. Set in the complicated world of high school, Charlie (Joe Locke) is a young gay man who falls for his classmate Nick (Kit Connor). Through a series of events, conversations, and conflicts, fans follow the relatable journey of a young man simply trying to find himself. Praised for its positive representation of the LGBTQ community, Heartstopper has a Certified Fresh 100% rating on review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes with critics saying its feel-good, adorable, even predictable elements all add to the charm. The series received a second and third season renewal less than a month after season 1 premiered, indicating that fans are hungry for more.

Maid (2021) new

Maid
82 %
8.4/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama
Cast Margaret Qualley, Nick Robinson, Anika Noni Rose
Created by Molly Smith Metzler
Margaret Qualley impressed in this drama that touches on serious subject matter with heart, honesty, and tons of emotion. Alex (Qualley) escapes her abusive husband and sets out to build a new life for her and her young daughter. Mothers will do anything to provide for their kids, and for Alex, that means taking a job cleaning houses so she can make ends meet. Aside from being an engrossing story about a battered woman looking to rebuild her life, the limited series is also a social commentary on all-too-familiar real-world situations. There’s a lot of frustrating red tape to cut through for government assistance, and many parents, particularly single parents, face the realities of putting their personal dreams on hold to deal with the struggles of day-to-day life. Indeed, the inspirational story is based on a real one: the memoir of Stephanie Land, whose own story shares similarities with that of Alex’s in the series.

The Last Kingdom (2015) new

The Last Kingdom
78 %
8.5/10
tv-ma 5 Seasons
Genre Action & Adventure, Drama, War & Politics
Cast Alexander Dreymon, Emily Cox, Eliza Butterworth
Created by Stephen Butchard
For historical fiction buffs, The Last Kingdom is a must-watch. Initially premiering on BBC, the series was acquired by Netflix in 2018, and a total of five seasons are available to stream. Based on The Saxon Stories by Bernard Cornwell, the setting begins in the year 866 when the Great Heathen Army arrives in Britain to cause conflict between the Vikings and the Anglo-Saxons. The show continues to cover time periods, battles for power, and resistance movements through to the 900s, with each season based on books in Cornwell’s series. Once you power through these, stay tuned for the upcoming feature-length sequel film, Seven Kings Must Die, which is currently in development.

Unorthodox (2020) new

Unorthodox
85 %
8/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama
Cast Shira Haas, Amit Rahav, Jeff Wilbusch
Created by Alexa Karolinski, Anna Winger
Seemingly out of nowhere, a little German American drama took viewers by storm and became a massive hit for Netflix. Unorthodox, which features dialogue mainly in Yiddish with subtitles, earned eight Primetime Emmy Award nominations, including one for Outstanding Limited Series and another for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series for Shira Haas. A raw look at the strictly religious and faith-based lives of those in an ultra-Orthodox community in New York City, at the center of the story is Esty (Haas), a 19-year-old woman who yearns for more freedom. While she’s destined by tradition and religious beliefs to get married and have children, she longs to unshackle herself from the constraints of marriage and motherhood and pursue a deep passion for music. There are only four episodes in the series, but Haas’ performance and the eye-opening, heart-wrenching storyline will keep you glued to the TV the entire way through. The story is fictional but it’s based on the autobiography of Deborah Feldman, who herself caused an uproar when she rejected her Hasidic roots.

Grace and Frankie (2015)

Grace and Frankie
58 %
8.2/10
tv-ma 7 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen
Created by Howard J. Morris, Marta Kauffman
Still holding the distinction of being Netflix’s longest-running original series, Grace and Frankie ended after seven seasons but kept viewers laughing the entire way through. The title characters, played by comedy icons Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, find their lives upended when their husbands and business partners Robert (Martin Sheen) and Sol (Sam Waterston) reveal that they are not only gay, but they have been secretly in a romantic relationship with one another for decades. The uptight, snooty Grace has never liked the free-spirited, quirky Frankie but now finds herself living in a co-owned beach house with the only woman who can relate to what she is going through. The show progresses as the reluctant, mismatched pair grow to love and respect one another. It’s an inspiring story about the possibilities of starting over, even if you’re pushing 80. Whether the ladies are dating, inventing the next best thing for aging women, thwarting attempts by their kids to move into a group home, or getting up to all kinds of hijinks, it’s plenty of fun to watch.

13 Reasons Why (2017)

13 Reasons Why
60 %
7.5/10
tv-ma 4 Seasons
Genre Drama, Mystery
Cast Dylan Minnette, Grace Saif, Christian Navarro
Created by Brian Yorkey
13 Reasons Why might be one of the more controversial titles on Netflix given the graphic depictions of assault, rape, and suicide. But for those who heed the trigger warnings and go into the show with a level of awareness and the openness to talk to others about what’s being shown, it’s the type of show you’ll want to watch with your older children, no matter how uncomfortable it is. The story is told through the perspective of Hannah (Katherine Langford), a high school student who committed suicide but left a series of cassette tape recordings addressed to each person she claims played a role in her mental decline. As the show continues through its subsequent three seasons, additional perspectives and parallel storylines are revealed involving the 13 individuals. While season 1 is by far the strongest entry, with moments that will shock and even disturb, it’s the type of show that needs to be seen and talked about, even if you’re being critical of it.

Love, Death & Robots (2019)

Love, Death & Robots
65 %
8.5/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Animation, Sci-Fi, Fantasy
Cast Gary Cole, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Nolan North, and more
Created by Tim Miller
Love, Death & Robots was actually developed as a reboot for the Heavy Metal animated movie before it landed on Netflix as a cartoon anthology series for adults. In this format, themes of sexuality, morality, romance, and more are explored in vividly executed shorts that vary greatly in terms of visual style. Many notable performers have lent their voices to these shorts, including Gary Cole, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Nolan North, John DiMaggio, and more. The second season of shorts debuted on May 14, with eight new episodes as visually stunning as the first season.

Stranger Things (2016)

Stranger Things
75 %
8.7/10
tv-14 4 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Mystery, Drama
Cast Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Finn Wolfhard
Created by Matt Duffer, Ross Duffer
This throwback sci-fi series set the world ablaze in the summer of 2016, igniting a bonfire of nostalgia while simultaneously telling a gripping story that gets more exciting with each episode. Now, it’s back for Season 4. When 12-year-old Will Byers goes missing in the small town of Hawkins, Indiana, his mother, Joyce (Winona Ryder, in a comeback performance), thinks she’s losing her mind, believing that Will has been taken by supernatural forces. Meanwhile, Will’s friends work to find and rescue him, with the help of a mysterious young girl named Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown), who appears seemingly out of nowhere. The mystery gets deeper and darker as the show goes on, while more and more members of the Hawkins community get drawn into the creepy tale. Few shows have been as willing to let children drive the story, and Stranger Things is better for it. The show is a clear homage to Spielberg’s coming-of-age films and ’80s horror, and superb performances across the board make this a must-watch.

Peaky Blinders (2013)

Peaky Blinders
8.8/10
tv-ma 6 Seasons
Genre Crime, Drama
Cast Cillian Murphy, Paul Anderson, Sam Claflin
Created by Steven Knight
Although it’s made for the BBC, Netflix distributes Peaky Blinders in the United States as a Netflix original, so it makes this list. It’s also one of Netflix’s most popular shows, and the diehards are finally rewarded in June with the long-awaited Season 6. The hard-boiled gangster drama centers on the Peaky Blinders, a notorious gang in Birmingham, England in the 1920s. The Blinders are run by the Shelby family, primarily the second-eldest brother, Tommy (Cillian Murphy). Tommy and his brothers have returned from World War I with distinguished war records, but also with deeply rooted, little-understood trauma that both haunts and informs their everyday decisions. In an England torn by post-war horror, economic depression, and the Bolshevik Revolution on the other side of the continent, the conditions are ripe for crime. Tommy has every intention to ride this opportunity to the top.

The Umbrella Academy (2019)

The Umbrella Academy
63 %
8.0/10
tv-14 3 Seasons
Genre Action, Adventure, Comedy
Cast Elliot Page, Tom Hopper, David Castaneda, Emmy Raver-Lampman, Robert Sheehan, Aidan Gallagher, Mary J. Blige
Created by Steve Blackman (created for television by), Jeremy Slater
It’s a tale as old as time: 43 women give birth on the same day, at the same time, despite not showing any previous signs of pregnancy, and seven of these unique babies are adopted by an eccentric billionaire who molds them into a team of child superheroes known as The Umbrella Academy. The unusual story follows the group, who disband during their teenage years, only to meet up again when their adoptive father dies. Immediately the crew finds themselves dealing with old wounds and at each other’s throats. They’re forced to throw their differences aside, however, to save the world from ending. This Netflix series immediately became a hit; it was first released in February 2019, and season 3 will premiere on June 23, 2022. The cast includes Elliot Page, Tom Hopper, David Castañeda, Emmy Raver-Lampman, Robert Sheehan, Aidan Gallagher, Justin H. Min, Cameron Britton, and Mary J. Blige. They are all expected to return for the next season. It’s based on a comic book series with the same name and was created by Gerard Way (from the band My Chemical Romance) and illustrator Gabriel Bá.

Russian Doll (2019)

Russian Doll
88 %
7.9/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Adventure, Comedy, Drama
Cast Natasha Lyonne, Greta Lee, Yul Vazquez, Charlie Barnett, Elizabeth Ashley
Created by Leslye Headland, Natasha Lyonne, Amy Poehler
This critically acclaimed series features Natasha Lyonne as a woman who finds herself stuck in a time loop, reliving the night of her birthday and dying over and over again, only to wake up at the same earlier point in the night. Lyonne co-created the series along with Amy Poehler and Leslye Headland, and the first, eight-episode season received high praise from critics and audiences alike, as well as 13 Primetime Emmy Award nominations. The show’s setting amid the nightlife of New York City, the colorful characters that drift in and out of the life of Lyonne’s character, and the deep dive it takes into the psychological aspects of her experience make it so much more than just another Groundhog Day story.

Ozark (2017)

Ozark
67 %
8.4/10
tv-ma 4 Seasons
Genre Crime, Drama
Cast Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, Sofia Hublitz
Created by Mark Williams, Bill Dubuque
Jason Bateman has had as interesting a career as anyone in the limelight. He burst onto the Hollywood scene in the early 1980s as a young heartthrob, starring in stuff like Teen Wolf Too and The Hogan Family before experiencing a major career renaissance in the late aughts with shows like the brilliant comedy Arrested Development. Ozark marks a different look for Bateman than many have seen, as he plays a financial planner-turned-money launderer who relocates his family to the remote Ozark mountains in Missouri to avoid attention from the law. Unsurprisingly, the law finds him anyway, and Marty (Bateman) must scramble to stay afloat while paying off debts to a Mexican cartel. Laura Linney is awesome as Marty’s wife, who gets caught up in the scheme, and Julia Garner is particularly good as the odd local girl Ruth Langmore. Though Ozark will naturally draw comparisons to Breaking Bad, its scope isn’t nearly as grand, but Bateman seems to improve with each passing episode.

Anatomy of a Scandal (2022)

Anatomy of a Scandal
52 %
NaN/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama
Cast Sienna Miller, Michelle Dockery, Rupert Friend
Created by David E. Kelley, Melissa James Gibson
Based on the Sarah Vaughan novel of the same name, Anatomy of a Scandal is a legal thriller co-created by Big Little Lies creator David E. Kelley. The anthology series centers on the personal and political scandals of the British elite, particularly one around an ambitious Parliament minister (Rupert Friend) and the barrister (Michelle Dockery) in charge of prosecuting the case.

Human Resources (2022)

Human Resources
72 %
7.5/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Animation, Comedy
Cast Nick Kroll, Maya Rudolph, Randall Park
Created by Jennifer Flackett, Mark Levin, Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Kelly Galuska
Fans of Big Mouth will love having a little extra in their life. This spinoff from the popular series about puberty goes behind the curtains to examine the preparation that Hormone Monsters, Shame Wizards, and other not-so-helpful creatures go through before joining their little humans on their journies.

Bridgerton (2020)

Bridgerton
75 %
7.3/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Drama, Romance
Cast Phoebe Dynevor, Regé-Jean Page, Adjoa Andoh
Created by Chris Van Dusen
Every now and then, a Netflix show becomes a cultural phenomenon. At the moment, that’s the role that Bridgerton is filling. This period romance series has already made a star out of Regé-Jean Page for his role as the Duke of Hastings, Simon Bassett. The show takes place in 1813 as Violet Bridgerton (Ruth Gemmell) tries to find suitable husbands and wives for her eight children. The breakout relationship in the first season follows Daphne Bridgerton (Phoebe Dynevor) and Simon as their friendship grows into love before veering into even more complicated territory. This story is just beginning, and it’s likely to be on Netflix for years to come.

Emily in Paris (2020)

Emily in Paris
58 %
7.0/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Drama, Comedy
Cast Lily Collins, Ashley Park, Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu
Created by Darren Star
Emily in Paris defies logic. Despite modest reviews, it was a surprise nominee for Outstanding Comedy Series at the 2021 Emmys. The series follows Chicago marketing executive Emily Cooper (Lily Collins) as she takes a new job at a Paris firm to provide an American perspective. As Emily navigates being a foreign national, she finds love and adventure at every turn. The series returned for a second season in December 2021.

The Witcher (2019)

The Witcher
53 %
8.2/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Drama, Action & Adventure
Cast Henry Cavill, Freya Allan, Anya Chalotra
Created by Lauren Schmidt

One of Netflix’s most successful series to date is also one of its most ambitious. Based on the video game franchise and book series of the same name by Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski, The Witcher is steeped in mythology and history and yet seems to move much more naturally than a fantasy contemporary, Game of Thrones. The series follows a link of destiny formed between a monster hunter (a witcher) called Geralt of Rivia and princess Ciri, a young woman who was cast from her home when it was razed by an enemy force. Following protagonists Geralt, Ciri, and the sorceress Yennefer of Vengerberg, the story moves across multiple timelines until merging by the end of the season. As Geralt hunts terrifying beasts and tries to find acceptance in the world, his relationship with the equally misunderstood Yennefer and the lost princess Ciri may be his ultimate hope.

Squid Game (2021)

Squid Game
69 %
8.1/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Action & Adventure, Mystery, Drama
Cast Lee Jung-jae, Park Hae-soo, Jung Ho-yeon
Created by Hwang Dong-hyuk
An acquisition from South Korea, Squid Game hit Netflix like a bolt of lightning, quickly becoming the most-watched show the platform has ever hosted. The viral sensation took off largely through social media and word of mouth by captivating and horrifying audiences with its sadistic premise. A cadre of ultra-wealthy elites round up desperate people and offer them the chance to become rich beyond their wildest dreams simply by competing in a few children’s games. Only, in these games, losing is not an option.

You (2018)

You
75 %
7.7/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Mystery, Crime, Drama
Cast Penn Badgley, Victoria Pedretti, Saffron Burrows
Created by Greg Berlanti, Sera Gamble
Originally a Lifetime show, You quickly caught the attention of Netflix, which acquired the rights to air season 1 as an original and make future seasons itself. Good thing it did, as Netflix’s platform gave You new life, so much so that most people don’t even know that it originated on another channel. Penn Badgely is sickeningly charming as a sociopath who will do absolutely anything for love. And as his crushes become obsessive, he soon finds himself extremely, irrevocably deep into the personal lives of the women he admires.

Sex Education (2019)

Sex Education
79 %
8.3/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Asa Butterfield, Gillian Anderson, Ncuti Gatwa
Created by Laurie Nunn
Asa Butterfield plays the son of a renowned sex therapist — played by X-Files star Gillian Anderson — who finds himself thrust into a similar role with his teenage classmates, who are all either having or trying to have sex, but rarely enjoying it. The show debuted in January 2019 to positive reviews and was renewed for a second season just a month later. Wonderfully acted by a fantastic cast, the British series also stars Emma Mackey, Ncuti Gatwa, Connor Swindells, and Kedar Williams-Stirling, but it’s worth seeing just for Anderson’s performance as the loving, no-filter mother of Butterfield’s character.

Big Mouth (2017)

Big Mouth
86 %
7.9/10
tv-ma 5 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Animation
Cast Nick Kroll, John Mulaney, Fred Armisen
Created by Jennifer Flackett, Mark Levin, Andy Goldberg, Nick Kroll
If you can handle a little bit (OK, a lot) of potty humor, you should enjoy Big Mouth. The animated series follows two seventh-graders, Nick and Andrew (series creator Nick Kroll and John Mulaney, respectively), as they struggle with their burgeoning sexuality, represented by a grotesque, crass “hormone monster” (also voiced by Kroll), whose base desires cause turmoil and frustration for both boys. Their friends Jessi (Jessi Klein) and Jay (Jason Mantzoukas) also struggle with puberty to varying degrees, as does Andrew’s crush, Missy (Jenny Slate/Ayo Edebiri). On its surface, Big Mouth is quite crude, but that humor belies the show’s nuanced, relatable exploration of adolescence and physical maturation. The series deftly handles the difficulties of middle school life, including common misconceptions held by kids about their sexuality and their bodies.

Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness (2020)

Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness
76 %
7.5/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Documentary, Crime
Cast Joe Exotic, Carole Baskin
Created by Eric Goode
Tiger King, perhaps Netflix’s most absurdist and absurdly popular docuseries to date, could not have arrived at a more apt time in history. As the entire world shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic, people spending their entire lives at home suddenly needed something to watch. A hero nobody asked for emerged: Joe Exotic. Exotic is a mulleted, gun-toting, country-singing polygamist who operates one of the most notorious roadside big cat zoos in Oklahoma. As such, he’s styled himself the Tiger King. This seven-part series centers primarily on Joe, but it takes a dark, chaotic spin in the world of big cat trading, introducing us to kingpins, con men, cult leaders, and other megalomaniacs who have become obsessed with the mystique and danger of owning tigers. Their ultimate enemy: animal activist, cheetah print enthusiast, and sanctuary owner Carole Baskin, who has dedicated her life to ending the big cat trade. Things get dark and weird fast. In September it was announced that the pandemic-popular show will be returning for a second season beginning November 17.
Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness | Official Trailer | Netflix

Midnight Mass (2021)

Midnight Mass
74 %
7.1/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Mystery, Drama
Cast Kate Siegel, Zach Gilford, Hamish Linklater
Created by Mike Flanagan
It’s not quite Halloween yet, but The Haunting of Hill House creator Mike Flanagan has a new supernatural horror story on Netflix: Midnight Mass. Within the show, Zach Gilford plays Riley Flynn, a young man who once fled from his hometown in disgrace. Years later, Riley returns to Crockett Island just as Father Paul (Hamish Linklater) triggers a religious revival among the townsfolk that coincides with events that could only be described as “miraculous.” However, there’s more to Father Paul than meets the eye, and something wicked this way comes for Riley and everyone he’s ever loved.

Hit & Run (2021)

Hit & Run
7.1/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Action & Adventure, Drama, Crime
Cast Lior Raz, Kaelen Ohm, Moran Rosenblatt
Created by Dawn Prestwich, Nicole Yorkin, Lior Raz, Avi Issacharoff
Hit and run accidents tend to be tragedies that strike without warning. But in Hit & Run, Segev Azulai (Lior Raz) comes to believe that the death of his American wife, Danielle (Kaelen Ohm), was no accident. When Danielle’s killers flee Israel and return to America, Segev follows them on a mission of revenge. Segev enlists his former lover, Naomi Hicks (Sanaa Lathan), to help him get to the truth. But as events spiral out of Segev’s control, there are very few people he can trust and no one who can save him except himself.

The Chair (2021)

The Chair
7.2/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama, Comedy
Cast Sandra Oh, Jay Duplass, Holland Taylor
Created by Amanda Peet, Annie Julia Wyman
Sandra Oh isn’t Killing Eve anymore, but she does have a new show on Netflix called The Chair. In it, Oh portrays Professor Ji-Yoon Kim, the first woman of color to chair Pembroke University’s English department. It may be a prestigious position, but it throws Ji-Yoon into the fire as she deals with proposed layoffs, a badly outdated curriculum, apathetic students, and deeply troubled members of her department. At home, Ji-Yoon is challenged by her adoptive daughter, Ju Ju (Everly Carganilla), and she soon finds that there are too few hours in the day to be both an educator and a parent.

Firefly Lane (2021)

Firefly Lane
57 %
7.4/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama
Cast Katherine Heigl, Sarah Chalke, Ben Lawson
Created by Maggie Friedman
Firefly Lane is the story of Tully Hart (Katherine Heigl) and Kate Mularkey (Sarah Chalke), two women who have been friends for more than half of their lives. Through a constantly time-shifting narrative, we see young Tully (Ali Skovbye) and Kate (Roan Curtis) bonding as teenagers, as well as a stint in the ‘80s when both Tully and Kate worked as TV reporters. In the present, Tully is a famous talk show host, while Kate is going through a divorce and attempting to restart her career after 14 years. There are some mysteries to solve as the narrative slowly unfolds, but the friendship between the two women feels genuine in every era of the show.

Never Have I Ever (2020)

Never Have I Ever
80 %
7.9/10
tv-14 2 Seasons
Genre Comedy
Cast Maitreyi Ramakrishnan, Jaren Lewison
Created by Lang Fisher, Mindy Kaling
Inspired by Mindy Kaling’s childhood, this comedy series focuses on Devi Vishwakumar (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan), a first-generation Indian American girl growing up in modern America. While Devi wants to improve her status at school, her community and emotions don’t exactly make it easy. Never Have I Ever is a familiar concept but packed with refreshingly funny and original characters and themes.

Lupin (2021)

Lupin
7.5/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Action, Crime, Drama
Cast Omar Sy, Ludivine Sagnier, Clotilde Hesme
Created by George Kay
Omar Sy stars as Assane Diop, a new character inspired by the classic French thief Arsène Lupin in this modern update that has strong Sherlock vibes. After an injustice inflicted by a wealthy family, Diop sets out to avenge his father using every ounce of cunning he has. A gentleman, thief, and master of disguise, Diop uses his charm and craft to outwit his enemies and pursue his quest for vengeance.

I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson (2019)

I Think You Should Leave with Tim Robinson
7.9/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Comedy
Cast Tim Robinson
Created by Zach Kanin, Tim Robinson
You might love I Think You Should Leave. You might hate it. You probably will not be indifferent to it. Tim Robinson stars in this sketch comedy series that is about as weird as sketch comedy gets. The general premise: Tim Robinson and a guest target someone and ridicule them or make them feel so uncomfortable that he or she is forced to leave. It’s not as cut and dry as that though, with many everyday scenarios like sitting next to someone on a plane or a first date getting the sketch treatment resulting in some truly extraordinarily weird and uncomfortable yet hilarious interactions.

Sweet Tooth (2021)

Sweet Tooth
78 %
7.9/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Drama, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Cast Christian Convery, Nonso Anozie, Adeel Akhtar
Created by Jim Mickle
After The Great Crumble wreaked havoc on the world, mysterious babies began being born. These “hybrids” — part human, part animal — are feared and hunted by humans who suspect they’re created by the virus unleashed during The Great Crumble. A sheltered, hybrid deer-boy named Gus (Christian Convery) has lived peacefully in his secluded forest home when he unexpectedly befriends a wandering loner called Jepperd (Nonso Anozie). Jepperd doesn’t fear Gus; instead, he takes Gus under his wing as they venture across the post-apocalyptic country in search of answers. Based on the beloved DC comic book series by Jeff Lemire, Sweet Tooth is an epic tale that’s suitable for fantasy fans of all ages.

Master of None (2015)

Master of None
87 %
7/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Lena Waithe, Naomi Ackie
Created by Aziz Ansari, Alan Yang
If you’ve never seen an episode of Master of None, you might be surprised to see star/creator Aziz Ansari depart from his trademark style of comedy — namely, loud, ridiculous, and goofy — and try on an outfit that looks new, but somehow feels broken-in. The show follows Dev Shah (Ansari), a not-so-famous actor living in New York (then, later, Italy), who is simply trying to get by. Master of None offers a unique and honest take on comedy that’s less reliant on punch lines and more situational — it’s Louie, with a millennial twist. Some episodes are funny, while some are sad, but the majority of them feel well-written and natural. Noël Wells and Eric Wareheim (Tim and Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!) provide some help off the bench, and while the acting can occasionally feel a bit strained (especially in the first season), Ansari’s crisp writing and relatable performances (he won a Golden Globe for his efforts) truly carry the show. Aziz’s real parents also appear as Dev’s parents in several hilarious segments, displaying comedy chops that must be hereditary. A long-awaited third season debuted in May 2021.

Shadow and Bone (2021)

Shadow and Bone
69 %
7.7/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Adventure, Sci-Fi, Fantasy
Cast Jessie Mei Li, Archie Renaux, Freddy Carter, Amita Suman, Kit Young, Ben Barnes
Created by Eric Heisserer
Netflix’s latest sensation is Shadow and Bone, a new fantasy series based on Leigh Bardugo’s novels. The show is set in an alternate world where the kingdom of Ravka is divided by an area of permanent darkness called the Shadow Fold. On a mission inside of the Fold, Alina Starkov (Jessie Mei Li) discovers that she is a magic user with the power to create light. This revelation changes Alina’s life forever as she is recruited to serve under General Kirigan (Ben Barnes). In her new position, Alina encounters danger, intrigue, and potentially love.

The Irregulars (2021)

The Irregulars
60 %
6.0/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi, Fantasy
Cast Henry Lloyd-Hughes, Royce Pierreson, McKell David
Created by Tom Bidwell
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes has proven to be a remarkably adaptable character in fiction. But in Netflix’s The Irregulars, the Great Detective (Henry Lloyd-Hughes) is missing in action. Consequently, John Watson (Royce Pierreson) turns to the Baker Street Irregulars to solve cases in Sherlock’s absence. Bea (Thaddea Graham) leads the Irregulars, which includes her sister, Jessie (Darci Shaw), as well as Billy (Jojo Macari) and Spike (McKell David). The team is very capable, but even they aren’t prepared for the supernatural threats they will face.

Ginny & Georgia (2021)

Ginny & Georgia
62 %
7.5/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Antonia Gentry, Brianne Howey, Mason Temple
Created by Sarah Lampert
Fifteen-year-old Ginny Miller (Antonia Gentry) frequently feels more mature than her 30-year-old mother, Georgia Miller (Brianne Howey). Despite their relation, the two women couldn’t be more different. But after years on the run, Georgia is finally ready to put down roots in western Massachusetts and give Ginny and her younger brother Austin a totally normal life. Unfortunately, Georgia’s past has a way of catching up with her, threatening her newfound life and bringing out a protective side in Georgia.

The End of the F***ing World (2017)

The End of the F***ing World
77 %
8.1/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama, Crime
Cast Alex Lawther, Jessica Barden, Naomi Ackie
Created by Jonathan Entwistle
One of Netflix’s many outstanding acquisitions, The End of the F***ing World is a British show adapted from the award-winning comic book series of the same name. The show follows two 17-year-old outsiders, James and Alyssa, on a journey to find Alyssa’s estranged father. However, James is pretty convinced that he’s a psychopath and believes it’s time to graduate from killing animals to humans. Naturally, Alyssa makes a wonderful target.

The Queen’s Gambit (2020)

The Queen’s Gambit
8.0/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama
Cast Anya Taylor-Joy, Bill Camp, Moses Ingram
Created by Scott Frank, Allan Scott
Based on Walter Tevis’ novel, this limited series takes audiences into a surprisingly captivating world: Competitive chess in the 1950s. The series follows Beth Harmon (Anya Taylor-Joy), a Kentucky orphan who discovers an aptitude for chess when she sneaks away from choir practices to play with the orphanage’s custodian. After her adoption as a teenager, Beth leans into the competitive chess scene, supported by her single, hedonistic adoptive mother. But although Beth is a female superstar in a male-dominated world, she’s haunted by personal demons and plagued by addiction and an obsessive personality.

Don't F**k with Cats: Hunting an Internet Killer (2019)

Don't F**k with Cats: Hunting an Internet Killer
8.0/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Documentary, Crime
Cast Deanna Thompson, John Green
Canadian Luka Magnotta was many things: A male model, a jet-set traveler, his mother’s pride and joy, and a murderer. When a viral video hits the internet of Magnotta killing two kittens, a group of amateur chatroom buds bands together to track down Magnotta before he can strike again. A manhunt that eventually rises to the attention of proper authorities through several different states and countries, this dark and perplexing crime series takes a dive into even deeper waters of morbidity. A three-part docuseries that’ll have you glued to your screen, Don’t F*** with Cats is not for the faint of heart, but it’s a gripping show from start to finish.

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018)

Chilling Adventures of Sabrina
74 %
7.5/10
tv-14 4 Seasons
Genre Drama, Fantasy, Horror
Cast Kiernan Shipka, Ross Lynch, Lucy Davis, Tati Gabrielle, Miranda Otto, Gavin Leatherwood
Created by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa
Remember Sabrina the Teenage Witch, the charming sitcom with Melissa Joan Hart? This is not that show. Instead, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina shares its name with a horror comic that modernizes Sabrina’s tales of witchcraft with a much harder edge. Kiernan Shipka stars in the series as Sabrina Spellman, a human/witch hybrid who is just starting down her magical path. Will she be one of Satan’s chosen? Or will Sabrina find her own way as a witch? It’s not always an easy journey, especially when the forces of darkness threaten Sabrina and her family.

Cobra Kai (2018)

Cobra Kai
70 %
8.6/10
tv-14 4 Seasons
Genre Action & Adventure, Drama
Cast William Zabka, Ralph Macchio, Courtney Henggeler
Created by Hayden Schlossberg, Josh Heald, John Hurwitz
Originally made for YouTube Red, this series sequel to the Karate Kid franchise has found a new home on Netflix. Picking up thirty years after the 1984 All Valley Karate Tournament, Cobra Kai finds down-and-out Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) desperate to find redemption from his epic loss. To do so, he reopens the infamous Cobra Kai karate dojo, reigniting his rivalry with the Karate Kid himself, Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio), who now runs a successful karate dojo of his own. But all is not roses in Daniel’s life, as he struggles to maintain balance and find peace after the passing of his mentor, Mr. Miyagi.

The Haunting of Bly Manor (2020)

The Haunting of Bly Manor
63 %
7.4/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Drama, Horror, Mystery
Cast Victoria Pedretti, Henry Thomas, Oliver Jackson-Cohen
Created by Mike Flanagan
The Haunting of Hill House was a big hit for Netflix, but that story has been told. Fortunately, Mike Flanagan has reassembled Victoria Pedretti, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Henry Thomas, Kate Siegel, Carla Gugino, and Catherine Parker for a new series, The Haunting of Bly Manor. This stand-alone horror series doesn’t share any continuity or characters with Hill House, but it is loosely based on Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw. Pedretti headlines the series as Dani Clayton, an American hired to be an au pair in London in 1987. Unfortunately for Dani, Bly Manor holds all sorts of dark secrets. Perfect for any viewers who have been itching for a scare.

Ratched (2020)

Ratched
50 %
7.3/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Mystery, Drama, Crime
Cast Sarah Paulson, Finn Wittrock, Jon Jon Briones
Created by Evan Romansky
In One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Nurse Mildred Ratched was the authority figure whose actions proved to be monstrous and vindictive. Ryan Murphy’s prequel series, Ratched, puts Mildred on the marquee with Sarah Paulson (American Horror Story) in the title role. But rather than soften Mildred’s edges and make her sympathetic, the show goes all-in on her descent into darkness. If anything, she’s an even bigger monster in the series than she was in the movie or the novel that inspired it. Ratched turns back the clock to 1947, as Mildred makes her mark on a mental health facility while harboring her own hidden agenda. She does have a human side and occasional moments of empathy. But Mildred’s heart was black long before she became a nurse.

Locke & Key (2020)

Locke & Key
61 %
7.4/10
tv-14 2 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Drama, Mystery
Cast Darby Stanchfield, Connor Jessup, Emilia Jones
Created by Carlton Cuse, Meredith Averill, Aron Eli Coleite
It took quite a long time to bring Joe Hill and artist Gabriel Rodriguez’s Locke & Key comic book series to television, including failed attempts at Fox and Hulu. However, Netflix found a winning approach to the material, thanks to Carlton Cuse, Meredith Averill, and Aron Eli Coleite. The series follows the Locke family after the murder of their father, Rendell. Nina Locke moves herself and her children into the Keyhouse, the ancestral family home. While exploring their new home, Tyler, Kinsey, and Bode discover that Keyhouse lives up to its name with keys that can unlock other worlds and even the mind itself. But a malevolent force wants to claim Keyhouse and its power for itself. This is a perfect Halloween treat for fans looking for TV horror.

Altered Carbon (2018)

Altered Carbon
64 %
8.0/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Cast Anthony Mackie, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Chris Conner
Created by Laeta Kalogridis
Richard K. Morgan’s cyberpunk noir novel, Altered Carbon is, like all of Morgan’s literature, high-concept sci-fi that is sleek and sexy enough for a mainstream audience. No wonder Netflix jumped at the opportunity to adapt it. This engrossing series is set more than 300 years in the future, in a world where death has effectively been conquered. Technology allows humans to store their entire consciousness on a disc-like device called a “stack,” enabling them to switch bodies practically at will. Once, however, there was a revolution against this immortalization of society, spearheaded by a group called Envoys, who believed true death was the only thing keeping the world from becoming hopelessly corrupt and destructive. Takeshi Kovacs is the only surviving soldier of that group, his mind imprisoned for centuries until wealthy businessman Laurens Bancroft boots him back up, offering to resurrect Kovacs as himself if he’ll do something for Bancroft: Solve Bancroft’s murder. Altered Carbon is complicated and can be difficult to follow, especially when Kovacs moves from Joel Kinnaman’s body to Anthony Mackie’s body between seasons, but it’s deeply provocative and enjoyable sci-fi.

American Vandal (2017)

American Vandal
76 %
8.2/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Crime, Drama
Cast Tyler Alvarez, Griffin Gluck
Created by Dan Perrault, Tony Yacenda
After 27 cars in the high-school faculty’s parking lot are vandalized with crude phallic images, the school’s resident slacker and class clown is expelled, but when two fellow students initiate a documentary-style investigation into the incident, everyone becomes a suspect in this surprisingly compelling and hilarious series. A satire of true-crime documentaries like Making a Murderer and SerialAmerican Vandal is a mockumentary that manages to channel much of the same “Did he really do it?” uncertainty into its story, while also offering a very funny and impressively clever spin on the typical docuseries format. Much like the true-crime series that inspired it, the first season of American Vandal is packed with narrative twists and turns that keep the audience guessing. It’s supremely binge-friendly as you push to discover the next revelation in this seemingly minor incident that consumes the lives of the characters involved in it. The first season of the series earned rave reviews, prompting Netflix to commission a second season, which premiered to even more critical acclaim. Sadly, that might be the last we see of the series, as Netflix abruptly canceled it in October 2018 as part of a wave of cancellations of projects Netflix co-produced with other studios.

Atypical (2017)

Atypical
66 %
8.3/10
tv-14 4 Seasons
Genre Drama, Comedy
Cast Jennifer Jason Leigh, Keir Gilchrist, Brigette Lundy-Paine, Michael Rapaport
Created by Robia Rashid
On its surface, Atypical is a traditional family sitcom that hits all the right charming notes with its coming-of-age narrative and characters who are easy to cheer for despite (or because of) their relatable flaws. Look a bit deeper, however, and the Netflix Original series about a high-functioning autistic teenager and his family becomes a remarkably thoughtful exploration of what it means to be “normal” in the modern world. Keir Gilchrist plays Sam, the show’s protagonist, whose pursuit of love and the trials and tribulations that go along with it serves as the foundation of the series’ narrative, and shapes the experiences of his family as they try to find the balance between being supportive and allowing him — and themselves — to be independent. Michael Rappaport and Jennifer Jason Leigh play Sam’s parents, while Brigette Lundy-Paine portrays his supportive sister.

Away (2020)

Away
6.6/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Drama
Cast Hilary Swank, Mark Ivanir, Ray Panthaki
Created by Andrew Hinderaker
The world’s first manned mission to Mars will be led by an American woman: Emma Green (Hilary Swank). Emma has worked her entire life for this goal, but as the launch approaches, she must reconcile with her decision to leave behind her husband (Josh Charles) and teenage daughter (Talitha Bateman) at a crossroads in their lives. Working with a team of international astronauts, Emma is more motivated than ever, but the personal dynamics and pain of leaving her family behind create a tension that she can’t control, making her decision to leave Earth an increasingly complex one.

Black Mirror (2011)

Black Mirror
8.8/10
tv-ma 5 Seasons
Genre Sci-fi, Psychological Thriller, Dystopia
Cast Daniel Kaluuya, Wyatt Russell, Bryce Dallas Howard, Daniel Lapaine
Created by Charlie Brooker
What happens when technology goes too far? That’s not an unreasonable question to ask oneself in 2019, and Black Mirror (originally broadcast on British Channel 4, before being acquired by Netflix) is a wildly entertaining, if depressing, answer to that question. Most of the episodes of this chilling anthology series ponder hypothetical eventualities resulting from the unchecked advancement of technology, often charting courses that are disturbingly well-connected to the way we work and live today. The show’s production value keeps getting better, and the fourth and fifth seasons — produced by Netflix — include a bevy of household names, from Miley Cyrus to Gugu Mbatha-Raw (whom creator/writer Charlie Brooker uses to great effect). The first two seasons — including the epic holiday special White Christmas  are also must-see programming. The series broke new ground in late 2018 with the release of Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, a stand-alone movie that features an interactive, “choose-your-own-adventure”-style narrative that broke new ground for the medium.

BoJack Horseman (2014)

BoJack Horseman
82 %
8.7/10
tv-ma 6 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama, Animation
Cast Will Arnett, Aaron Paul, Alison Brie
Created by Raphael Bob-Waksberg
Despite lukewarm reviews for its first season, BoJack improved dramatically and received critical acclaim for the remainder of its run, until it was canceled earlier this year after six hilarious seasons. The animated show centers around BoJack Horseman (Will Arnett), a washed-up ’90s sitcom star (and actual horse-man) trying to find happiness and reclaim his former fame. Anthropomorphic half-breeds are the norm, and the show milks much of its humor by simply playing off stereotypes associated with the characters’ animal halves. The show’s true strength lies in its sincerity, however, as BoJack struggles to deal with his insecurities in a town rife with celebrity and its many vapid failings. Paul F. Tompkins (Best Week Ever), Alison Brie (Community, GLOW), and Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) provide excellent voice support in a series that flips from hilarious to depressing with impressive grace.

Chef's Table (2015)

Chef's Table
8.5/10
tv-ma 6 Seasons
Genre Documentary, Cooking
Cast Dan Barber, Massimo Bottura
Created by David Gelb
This documentary web series introduces viewers to top culinary minds across the world, offering insight into the day-to-day experiences and responsibilities of renowned chefs. Each episode focuses on a different restauranteur and blends together personal stories with culinary content to great effect. The show’s traditional documentary presentation can be a bit stuffy at times, and the narratives can be unevenly balanced in favor of emotional backstories, but most viewers should enjoy and appreciate some insight into the wide world of fine dining. The quality of each episode hinges largely upon the personality of the chosen chef, and some — notably Massimo Bottura in the first season, Dominique Crenn in the second, and the brash Ivan Orkin in the third — are more camera-friendly than others. Still, the series is a welcome departure from the competition-focused cooking shows that dominate cable and network TV. If you like this, Chef’s Table France is also worth checking out.

The Crown (2016)

The Crown
84 %
8.6/10
tv-ma 4 Seasons
Genre Biography, Drama, History
Cast Claire Foy, Olivia Colman, Matt Smith
Created by Peter Morgan
Easily the most celebrated British period piece since Downton AbbeyThe Crown follows Queen Elizabeth II — the still-reigning Queen of England, at 93 years old — across different periods of her life, beginning with her 1947 marriage to Prince Philip of Edinburgh. Reception to the series has been overwhelmingly positive, as nearly every aspect of the show — acting, production value, historical accuracy — has been widely praised. The series’ interesting format sees Netflix recasting the role of Elizabeth and other characters season-to-season; Claire Foy starred in seasons 1 and 2 alongside Matt Smith (Dr. Who) and Vanessa Kirby, while Olivia Colman (Peep Show) takes the royal reins in seasons 3 and 4, the latter of which introduces Lady Diana Spencer (Emma Corrin) to the fray, as the show begins its portrayal of her ultimately tragic story. Netflix plans to produce a total of 60 episodes over six seasons.

Cursed (2020)

Cursed
59 %
5.9/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Action & Adventure, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Cast Katherine Langford, Devon Terrell, Gustaf Skarsgård
Created by Frank Miller, Tom Wheeler
Based on Thomas Wheeler’s bestselling book of the same name, Cursed reimagines the legend of King Arthur through the eyes of Nimue, a young woman destined to become the Lady of the Lake who bestows the legendary sword Excalibur upon Arthur. In this tale, Nimue and Arthur have a much more nuanced shared history. After her mother’s death, Nimue finds an unexpected partner in Arthur, who is a humble mercenary on a quest to deliver an ancient sword to the wizard Merlin. Through the course of her journey, Nimue discovers she has extraordinary powers of her own, becoming a target of the terrifying Red Paladins and King Uther. It’s a coming-of-age tale set within a classic story with electrifying action and provocative themes.

Marvel's Daredevil (2015)

Marvel's Daredevil
72 %
8.6/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Crime, Drama, Action & Adventure
Cast Charlie Cox, Deborah Ann Woll, Elden Henson
Created by Drew Goddard, Steven S. DeKnight
The first in a slew of Marvel shows to hit Netflix over the past few years, Daredevil works largely on the strength of Charlie Cox’s performance in the title role. Cast in a similar vein as Christopher Nolan’s Batman movies, this series shows a darker side to Marvel Studios’ colorful cast of superheroes. The blind vigilante spends his days protecting New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen as a lawyer, and his nights doing the same in a much more tangible (and violent) manner. The show’s action sequences are fun, and amiable supporting performances from Elden Henson (The Mighty Ducks) and Deborah Ann Woll (True Blood) bring some comic relief and heart to the bleak setting, but as usual, the real stars of the show are the villains. Vincent D’Onofrio is excellent as the deranged Kingpin, while Jon Bernthal’s turn as the Punisher — which earned him his own Netflix series — is as convincing as it is visceral. Sadly, the series was canceled by Netflix shortly after the debut of the critically acclaimed third season as part of its efforts to reduce the number of series it co-produces with other studios.

Dark (2017)

Dark
8.8/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Drama, Mystery, Crime
Cast Louis Hofmann, Karoline Eichhorn, Christian Hutcherson
Created by Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese
As the only foreign-language entry on our list, Dark would merit some curiosity at the very least, but it’s here not because it’s German, but because it’s awesome. A Stranger Things-esque setup — missing children from a small town, supernatural occurrences, mysterious laboratories — will have you thinking you know what to expect, but trust us, you don’t. The town of Winden lives in the shadow of eternal clouds, lending Dark a more macabre vibe than Stranger Things, which peppers in comic sequences and lots of nostalgia. Dark weaves together multiple storylines amid complex relationships endemic to small-town life, even outside the good, old U.S. of A. If you’re in the mood for a lighthearted romp or a satisfying romance arc, move on — this is not the show for you. But if you love serious shows with a flair for the dramatic (and a heaping helping of despair), check this one out.

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance (2019)

The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance
82 %
8.2/10
tv-pg 1 Season
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Action & Adventure
Cast Anya Taylor-Joy, Nathalie Emmanuel, Taron Egerton
Created by Jim Henson
More than three decades after Jim Henson first introduced audiences to the magical land of Thra in The Dark Crystal, Netflix returned to the world of Skeksis, Gelflings, and other fantastic creatures with this 10-episode prequel series that chronicles the events leading up to the 1982 film. Like the original film, Age of Resistance features a cast composed almost entirely of puppets, with the Jim Henson Company teaming up with Netflix to produce this visually stunning adventure that follows a group of Gelflings who discover the Skesis’ dark secret and must stoke the fires of rebellion throughout Thra.

Dead to Me (2019)

Dead to Me
68 %
8.0/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Drama, Mystery, Crime
Cast Christina Applegate, Linda Cardellini, James Marsden
Created by Liz Feldman
When Jen’s (Christina Applegate) husband dies in a tragic hit-and-run, she becomes determined to solve the crime. When she meets optimistic free spirit Judy (Linda Cardellini) at a grief support group, their polar opposite personalities strike up an unlikely friendship. As they bond over wine and a shared affinity for The Facts of Life, Judy realizes that she holds the key to a shocking secret that may destroy Jen’s life. It may also be the key for Jen to move on with her life, though. Dead to Me is a dark comedy that explores the entertaining sides of grief, loss, and forgiveness. It’s about maintaining your sense of humor in the face of tragedy.

Dear White People (2017)

Dear White People
6.2/10
tv-ma 4 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Logan Browning, Brandon P. Bell, DeRon Horton
Created by Justin Simien
After Justin Simien’s 2014 film of the same name earned rave reviews, Netflix commissioned the young director for a multiseason TV series, featuring the same characters (recast) and an altered storyline. The series is about Black students at a predominantly white (and fictitious) Ivy League college, Winchester University, who work to try and find both group and individual identities while carving out a place within the school’s ecosystem. Logan Browning stars as Sam White, a student who runs a radio show titled Dear White People, which causes some controversy among the student body. Thanks to Simien’s expert touch, the show deftly handles the nuances of identity, romance, education, and socialization with plenty of comedic moments, helping to inform viewers of all colors about other points of view without ever seeming judgmental or vindictive.

Easy (2016)

Easy
72 %
6.9/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Created by Joe Swanberg
This anthology series, created by mumblecore hotshot Joe Swanberg (Win It All), provides a template for relatable and realistic depictions of love and sex in the 21st century. Despite a star-studded list of performers — including Orlando Bloom, Emily Ratajkowski, and Dave Franco, to name a few — Swanberg manages to make you forget that you’re watching someone famous by crafting characters that are deep, yet not too complicated to fit into a 30-minute window. Each vignette catalogs the struggles of a couple or group of people in contemporary Chicago, where gender roles and language barriers are equal obstacles for people seeking happiness. The show’s brevity prevents most of the stories from reaching any sort of satisfying conclusion, but it’s a sincere collection of not-so-tall tales that most will find familiar and engaging. If you watch all three seasons, there are even some neat callbacks.

Fear City: New York vs The Mafia (2020)

Fear City: New York vs The Mafia
61 %
7.1/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Documentary, Crime
Cast Rudolph Giuliani
An intense docuseries on the “Golden Era of the Mob,” Fear City is true crime for gangster movie aficionados. Throughout the 1970s and ’80s, the “Five Families” of the New York mafia — Bonanno, Colombo, Gambino, Genovese, and Lucchese — had a seemingly insurmountable grip on the city, with their hands in unions, politics, law enforcement, and practically everywhere else. This three-part series from Sam Hobkinson (Don’t F**k with Cats) goes deep into New York’s massive endeavor to take down its most formidable mob bosses. Using interviews with law enforcement officials and ex-mafia associates, unearthed surveillance recordings, news footage, and archival material, Fear City paints a terrifying, engrossing portrait of the mob’s brutality, excess, and ubiquity.

GLOW (2017)

GLOW
82 %
8.0/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Alison Brie, Betty Gilpin, Marc Maron
Created by Liz Flahive, Carly Mensch
Stop us if you’ve heard this one before: A down-on-her-luck actress in the mid-1980s (Alison Brie) finds surprising fulfillment when she joins a low-budget women’s wrestling program run by a seedy, dishonest director (Marc Maron). Oh, what’s that? You’ve never seen anything like this? Duh. GLOW — which stands for Gorgeous Ladies Of Wrestling — was a real show in the mid-’80s that featured wrestling (of course), wacky and colorful characters, and crazy comedy sketches. Netflix’s take on it sees the ladies of GLOW battling their issues while trying to come together and produce a successful show. It’s a dangerous premise, but one that works incredibly well thanks to dedicated performances from Brie, Maron, and Betty Gilpin. British rocker Kate Nash, Sydelle Noel, and Britney Young are also excellent in supporting roles. In August 2019, the series was renewed for a fourth and final season, but Netflix then reversed its renewal decision due to the pandemic, in effect canceling the series.

Godless (2017)

Godless
75 %
8.3/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Western, Drama
Cast Jeff Daniels, Michelle Dockery, Jack O'Connell, Thomas Brodie-Sangster
Created by Scott Frank
Two-time Oscar nominee Scott Frank (Out of SightLogan) created this Western drama for Netflix,  and the miniseries went on to earn a pile of Primetime Emmy Award nominations for its epic, seven-episode story arc. The series is set in a small mining town during the 1880s after a mine accident causes the death of nearly all of the town’s male residents. The remaining women are doing just fine, though, until a gunslinger arrives in town on the run from his former mentor, the bloodthirsty leader of an outlaw gang. The film features Jeff Daniels as the cruel, aforementioned leader of the gang hunting for their runaway member, but it’s Downton Abbey actress Michelle Dockery and Nurse Jackie vet Merritt Wever who are the show’s real standouts. They play a pair of pioneer women who don’t need any men to handle their business. Daniels, Dockery, and Wever all earned Emmy nominations for their performances, with Daniels and Wever both winning in their respective categories. The series boasts some stunning cinematography, brilliant dialogue, and compelling action scenes to go along with its strong performances all around.

The Haunting of Hill House (2018)

The Haunting of Hill House
79 %
8.6/10
tv-ma 1 Season
Genre Mystery, Drama
Cast Michiel Huisman, Elizabeth Reaser, Kate Siegel
Created by Mike Flanagan
This terrifying series from Mike Flanagan, the writer and director of criminally underappreciated horror films Oculus and Ouija: Origin of Evil, offers a new spin on Shirley Jackson’s 1959 novel of the same name. It follows a family who moves into an old house intending to renovate it, only to experience one scary paranormal event after another before a mysterious tragedy forces them out of the haunted manor. The story unfolds through a mix of timeline-hopping explorations of each family member’s experiences at Hill House and how the trauma of those encounters shapes their lives and eventually brings them back to where it all started. Beautifully shot, expertly paced, and filled with the sort of subtle callbacks that encourage multiple viewings, The Haunting of Hill House is one of the best horror tales to debut on any screen — big or small — in recent years. Oh, and if you don’t believe us, just consider that Stephen King himself described the series as “close to a work of genius.”

High Score (2020)

High Score
62 %
7.4/10
tv-14 1 Season
Genre Documentary
Cast Charles Martinet
Created by France Costrel
The behind-the-scenes stories of the video game industry are widely known to gamers who are deeply immersed in that world. However, High Score still has some surprises for even the most hardcore gamers, with its insightful examination of the industry’s early days as an entertainment art form. From the rise of the arcades, the console wars between Nintendo and Sega, the advancement of 3D graphics, fighting games, and more, High Score is a terrific crash course in video game history. It even features the voice actor behind Mario, Charles Martinet, as the narrator who walks us through every episode.

Marvel's Jessica Jones (2015)

Marvel's Jessica Jones
76 %
7.9/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Drama
Cast Krysten Ritter, Rachael Taylor, Eka Darville
Created by Melissa Rosenberg
Krysten Ritter shines as antihero Jessica Jones, who rejected her superhero persona after a traumatic experience at the hands of Kilgrave (David Tennant), and now runs her own detective agency. Like Daredevil, the series is darker and more grounded than Marvel’s cinematic efforts, though it’s missing some of the goofy lighthearted qualities that Daredevil brings. Jessica Jones is thematically heavier, as the characters deal with topics like rape and PTSD. As with Daredevil, the villain is the sizzle of this first season — Tennant conjures perhaps the best performance of any on-screen Marvel bad guy this side of Tom Hiddleston’s Loki. The show’s structure is uniquely suited for the future inclusion of guest heroes; Luke Cage figures prominently in the first season, while season 2 has its own intriguing new characters to build upon. The series came to its conclusion after season 3, however. Both Jones and Cage (along with Daredevil and Iron Fist) featured heavily in Netflix’s crossover series The Defenders.

Lost in Space (2018)

Lost in Space
7.3/10
tv-pg 3 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Action & Adventure, Drama
Cast Molly Parker, Toby Stephens, Maxwell Jenkins
Created by Irwin Allen, Matt Sazama, Burk Sharpless
The latest adaptation of Irwin Allen’s landmark 1960s sci-fi series, Lost In Space is centered on the Robinson family, which has taken to the stars together, courtesy of a program aimed at finding a new home for humanity. Of course, their craft veers off course and they end up in a new galaxy entirely, which leads — as you might expect — to a series of dangerous scenarios in which the family must work together to survive. Toby Stephens (Black Sails) plays army-dad John Robinson, whose wife Maureen (Molly Parker), is the expedition leader. The kids are played by Taylor Russell, Mina Sundwall, and Maxwell Jenkins, with support from Parker Posey, Ignacio Serricchio, and others. While it’s the same old take on The Swiss Family Robinson at its core, the series’ special effects, set design, and cinematography are all top-notch, lending a sense of legitimacy to the many perils faced by the Robinsons and company. Perhaps more importantly, the family dynamic — especially with the three children and the robot Will befriends — feels real, turning this from an also-ran space sitcom into a pretty great show.

Lucifer (2016)

Lucifer
49 %
8.1/10
tv-14 6 Seasons
Genre Crime, Comedy-Drama, Fantasy
Cast Tom Ellis, Lauren German, Kevin Alejandro
Created by Tom Kapinos
Lucifer is very loosely based upon the comic book that inspired it, but it has won a devoted fandom. Tom Ellis headlines the series as Lucifer Morningstar, the former Lord of Hell. Lucifer got bored living among the damned and he decided to move to Los Angeles and open his own nightclub. However, Lucifer soon found himself taken with LAPD Detective Chloe Decker (Lauren German), a woman seemingly immune to his charms. There is a police procedural baked into Lucifer that isn’t present in the comic. But there’s also a slow brewing love story between Lucifer and Chloe. Lucifer never hides who and what he is, but Chloe doesn’t initially believe him. Now that the truth is definitively out in the open, Lucifer and Chloe face new obstacles in the penultimate season.

Mindhunter (2017)

Mindhunter
80 %
8.6/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Drama, Crime
Cast Jonathan Groff, Holt McCallany, Hannah Gross, Anna Torv
Created by Joe Penhall
Why do we obsess over serial killers? Perhaps it’s because we don’t truly understand what makes them tick. That’s the hook for Mindhunter, a crime drama that is executive produced by David Fincher (Fight Club, Gone Girl) and Charlize Theron. Jonathan Groff (Glee, Hamilton) and Holt McCallany play FBI agents tasked with interviewing and assessing serial killers to build personality profiles that might help solve ongoing and future cases. Aside from Anna Torv (Fringe), a largely anonymous cast takes the stage here, as the pair of agents investigates and interviews characters based on real killers from the mid-late 20th century, including one Ed Kemper. Mindhunter is largely a bleak affair, with a general sense of dread pushed forward by creepy performances and graphic crime scene photos. Still, it’s a curious subject and one which informs the detective work done by characters in modern cop dramas. If you liked NightcrawlerZodiac, and Silence of the Lambs, you’ll like Mindhunter. 

Narcos (2015)

Narcos
80 %
8.8/10
tv-ma 3 Seasons
Genre Crime, Drama
Cast Pedro Pascal, Matias Varela, Damián Alcázar
Created by Chris Brancato, Doug Miro, Carlo Bernard
Yes, Pablo Escobar is played out, and the show takes its fair share of historical liberties. However, any quibbles with this series can easily be pardoned thanks to some brilliant performances by Wagner Moura (Escobar) and Boyd Holbrook (Steve Murphy), the latter of which is on his way to becoming a bonafide action star thanks to turns in the excellent Logan and The Predator. Narcos details Escobar’s rise to wealth and power as the face behind one of the largest drug cartels of all time, based out of Medellin, Colombia. Moura oscillates between dedicated family man and ruthless kingpin with alarming ease, while DEA agents Murphy and Javier Peña (Pedro Pascal) work to capture the elusive patron. If you’re unfamiliar with Escobar’s story, this is a riveting (if not wholly realistic) look into the man, and the chaos he wrought upon an entire continent during his heyday. The third season follows a sister cartel after Escobar’s death (uh … spoilers?). The popularity of the series even led to a spinoff series, Narcos: Mexico, in 2018.

On My Block (2018)

On My Block
69 %
8.0/10
tv-14 4 Seasons
Genre Comedy
Cast Jason Genao, Brett Gray, Jessica Marie Garcia
Created by Lauren Iungerich, Eddie Gonzalez, Jeremy Haft
Saying that Hollywood has issues of representation would be the world’s biggest understatement, but with On My Block, Netflix is working to remedy those issues. The show follows four high school freshmen — all people of color — in a witty, relatable coming-of-age story that culminates in some tensely dramatic moments. Monse (Sierra Capri) is a tomboy with deep-seated feelings for one of her close friends, Cesar (Diego Tinoco), who’s trying to balance an unstable home life against the social demands of school and his feelings for Monse. Ruby (Jason Genao) is a whip-smart smooth talker, Jamal (Brett Gray) is a nerd on a quest, and Olivia (Ronni Hawk) is trying to make things work after her family is deported. The series treats ethnic and cultural divides with grace, showing how difficult it is to grow up as a young person of color in America.

Orange Is the New Black (2013)

Orange Is the New Black
8.0/10
tv-ma 7 Seasons
Genre Comedy, Drama
Cast Taylor Schilling, Natasha Lyonne, Uzo Aduba
Created by Jenji Kohan
This dramedy was once the crown jewel of Netflix’s original program list — judging by critical reception, at least. Orange Is the New Black received dozens of nominations and awards for its portrayal of an all-female prison. It follows Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), who goes to prison 10 years after smuggling drug money for her girlfriend. The show has been praised for its thoughtful representations of a diverse group of prison inmates, and for exploring issues relating to race, sexuality, and emotion within a controlled, female-dominant environment. Few programs are willing to dedicate so much time to women, and few combine humor with sincerity as flawlessly. The seventh and final season of the series was released in July 2019.

Sense8 (2015)

Sense8
66 %
8.3/10
tv-ma 2 Seasons
Genre Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Drama
Cast Miguel Ángel Silvestre, Max Riemelt, Jamie Clayton
Created by Lilly Wachowski, Lana Wachowski, J. Michael Straczynski
A sci-fi drama from some of the genre’s greatest storytellers might seem like an easy win, but there was nothing typical about this groundbreaking show from Lana and Lilly Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski. The series follows a group of eight individuals from around the world who suddenly find themselves connected mentally and emotionally. They can experience each other’s lives and draw upon the knowledge and talents they each possess. On the run from a mysterious government agency rounding up these “Sensates,” they must find a way to protect themselves and continue to live their lives, both as individuals and collectively. While the premise might seem straightforward, Sense8 stands out for its diverse international cast and globe-spanning locations that allow them to experience the world through each other’s eyes. As beautiful as the series is visually, it reaches even greater heights with its willingness to explore the world and the human experience through its characters’ hearts, and show the myriad ways we can love and be loved by those around us. The series was abruptly canceled after its second season due to the high cost of its international filming, but a fan campaign prompted Netflix to greenlight a two-hour series finale that tied up the story’s loose ends.

The Toys That Made Us (2017)

The Toys That Made Us
8.0/10
tv-14 3 Seasons
Genre Documentary
Cast Donald Ian Black
Created by Brian Volk-Weiss
There wasn’t always a toy market that catered to kids and collectors. Everything changed in the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s. Netflix’s The Toys That Made Us offers deep dives into the origins of Star Wars toys, Transformers, Barbie, Lego, Star Trek, Power Rangers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and more. Many of the people who brought these toys to life share the story of their creation, while fans around the world share their collections and their thoughts on the toy lines as well. There are even some occasionally heartwarming moments, including a reunion between two partners who had an acrimonious split several years before. This show is magic, in its own way. And we love it.

Trollhunters: Tales of Arcadia (2016)

Trollhunters: Tales of Arcadia
8.4/10
tv-y7 3 Seasons
Genre Family, Animation, Action & Adventure, Comedy, Sci-Fi & Fantasy
Cast Lexi Medrano, Charlie Saxton, Amy Landecker
Created by Guillermo del Toro
Created by Guillermo del Toro, Trollhunters‘ story is fairly run-of-the-mill for a cartoon series (ostensibly for kids), but its masterful animation and voice acting set it apart from contemporaries. When 15-year-old Jim Lake (the late Anton Yelchin) finds a magical amulet, he’s transformed into the Trollhunter, a magical being tasked with the protection of a world of trolls that is hidden beneath the fictional town of Arcadia. Jim must balance his real-life responsibilities with his new identity, battling evil gum-gum trolls and making friends in the process. Superb vocal support is provided by Kelsey Grammer (Frasier), Jonathan Hyde (Jumanji), and Fred Tatasciore. The series was renewed despite Yelchin’s untimely death shortly after production ceased. Three seasons are currently available and del Toro has indicated that Trollhunters (not to be confused with the film Trollhunter) is just the first arc of a three-part animated saga he has planned. The first of those three spinoff series, 3Below: Tales of Arcadia is now available to binge, too.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (2015)

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
80 %
7.6/10
tv-14 4 Seasons
Genre Comedy
Cast Ellie Kemper, Tituss Burgess, Jane Krakowski
Created by Tina Fey, Robert Carlock
In a sea of outlandish show concepts, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt continues to stand out. Kimmy (Ellie Kemper, The Office) spent 15 formative years in her life trapped in an underground vault with three other women at the hands of a lunatic cult leader. She’s rescued by police, and upon getting freed, Kimmy promptly moves to New York City and tries to adjust to life above ground. The show, produced by Tina Fey, received 11 Emmy nominations for its first two seasons alone. Critics praised Kemper’s portrayal of the “unbreakable,” idealistic Kimmy— whose sunshine-fueled personality combines with a variety of mental demons hovering just below the surface of Kimmy’s optimistic appearance. The plotlines are brought to a whole new level by the ensemble cast: hilarious performances from Tituss Burgess, Jane Krakowski (30 Rock), and Carol Kane (Annie Hall, Taxi) keep the show interesting. Every season absolutely doubles down in its wackiness and charm, which was the signature that kept viewers coming back for more. The series returned for its final story arc in January of 2019.

House of Cards (2013)

House of Cards
73 %
8.7/10
tv-ma 6 Seasons
Genre Drama
Cast Robin Wright, Michael Kelly, Constance Zimmer
Created by Beau Willimon
An adaptation of the 1990 BBC series of the same name (itself adapted from the 1989 book by Michael Dobbs), House of Cards follows the political exploits and personal dramas of Democratic House Majority Whip, Frank Underwood (Kevin Spacey). On a cruel quest for power, Frank, along with his wife, Claire (Robin Wright), and their cabinet of congressional conspirators and close contacts steamroll, backstab, and blackmail their way through six seasons of high-minded political madness. Due to allegations of misconduct, Kevin Spacey was removed from the show, with the sixth season focusing on Claire’s ascent to power.

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