Last updated on October 10th, 2022 at 06:04 pm
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Netflix is still every bit as popular as it was a few years ago when the internet discovered the term “Netflix and Chill” for casual college hookups. One reason it grows increasingly popular with adults is due to the fresh Netflix Originals content added to the platform each month.
We all love the way Netflix is bringing back our old favorites with reboots of beloved ‘80s and ‘90s TV shows. But most of all, it has become a wellspring of some amazingly creative new television trends.
Luckily for us, Netflix doesn’t dismiss the offbeat or restrict its creators into narrow genres. The results of this openness to new ideas are apparent when it comes to innovative television. Netflix takes chances and flips stereotypes on their backside.
Netflix original series are on the cutting edge of entertainment for a variety of reasons. Netflix has more than proven its strength and staying power and has recently become one of the heaviest hitters in entertainment due to their media deals with Shonda Rhimes, the Obamas, and Martin Scorsese.
They operate under the theory that the creativity of their media producers should not be hampered by the over-involvement of financial production interests. This is a completely new formula that contrasts with the more traditional approach of most movie production and distribution companies.
The shows that have come from Netflix in the last number of years are so exceedingly good they have made streaming the only way to go. Netflix original series have received numerous accolades, including the largest number of Emmys for any network.
For years people have had watercooler discussions about Orange is the New Black and Stranger Things. Glow and Making a Murderer captured the minds of people around the world. Series like Grace & Frankie prove that Netflix produces shows traditional networks may pass on, to their own demise; Grace & Frankie received huge accolades even with protagonists above the age of 70.
Netflix series tend to become popular due to the hands-off approach of the company. The chief content officer of the company, Ted Sarandos, believes in going against conventional television wisdom and creating culturally relevant events for under-served audiences. The successes have included both documentary films and documentary series, feature films and foreign offerings.
The meat and potatoes of Netflix, however, has always been the unique Netflix original series that populate their selections.
What Is a Netflix Original Series?
The main component of the Netflix formula is the distribution of their original content. Their shows are something you cannot see anywhere else. The company may finance the show to some extent, but the secret to Netflix is buying and owning the rights to certain shows.
They do this with American productions and also global ones, such as their purchase of rights to the popular Peaky Blinders from the BBC.
The enthusiasm for Netflix has grown since it has become clear they cater to all interests, tastes, and backgrounds. This has drawn prominent and talented producers and directors as well as exciting actors, actresses, and comedians to the Netflix brand.
They know a Netflix original series allows them the freedom to both make good art and have a strong and supportive company behind them. Demographic studies give the company an understanding of the content that viewers are hankering to see.
Highest-Rated Netflix Series
Netflix has some of the most unique series offerings available right now. Their highest rated Netflix original series, Stranger Things, has been enormously successful since 2016 and continues to be a crowd-pleasing powerhouse. Its popularity is fueled by nostalgia, innocence, and a return to classically suspenseful horror that is popular across the globe.
The second-highest rated show is a touchstone of sorts for Netflix. Orange is the New Black is as popular as it ever was as a Netflix original series after receiving sixteen Emmy nominations and four Emmy wins for the first five seasons.
Ever Widening Content Choices
The streaming service just continues to release new original movies and shows, and because Netflix allows writers and producers so much artistic license in their contracts, there’s something for everyone. It also means that each production has its own individual twist.
Netflix’s subscription service means consumer-driven programming, and that means more diversity and creativity when it comes to content.
TV Veterans Buy into Netflix
Even entertainment powerhouses like Shonda Rimes are signing with Netflix. And it’s not just because of the money. Rimes told reporters:
“Ted provides a clear, fearless space for creators at Netflix. He understood what I was looking for — the opportunity to build a vibrant new storytelling home for writers with the unique creative freedom and instantaneous global reach provided by Netflix’s singular sense of innovation.”
Netflix’s contracts with David Letterman, Dave Chapelle, and even Barack and Michelle Obama prove that it’s not about the money. It’s about the freedom to share their vision with audiences.
The following are just a some of the excellent Netflix Originals that you must see. Even though some of them are now household names, you may have been put off by the hype.
Trust us. All of these shows live up to the hype and more!
1. Orange is the New Black
Orange is the New Black (OITNB) seems to be the turning point for the explosion of Netflix Originals content. Along with House of Cards, it was one of the first web-only television series to receive an Emmy nomination. Based on the memoirs of Piper Kerman and launched in 2013 as a TV series, OITNB is still one of Netflix’s most-watched shows.
Boasting 12 Emmy nominations and three wins in its first season, the story focuses on Piper Chapman. Piper is a self-involved, upper-class white woman in her thirties who ends up in prison because of her involvement with a drug cartel.
The contrast between Piper’s privileged life and the one she has in prison is no less than arresting. And although early episodes centered on Piper, at its heart, OITNB is an ensemble show with a diverse cast. The writers bring viewers into the stories of all the woman in the prison. From the wise and wonderful Russian immigrant, Red, to former firefighter and transwoman, Sophia, audiences connect with the often unjust and even humorous stories behind their prison sentences.
You can check out the trailer above, but beware — OITNB explores adult situations, including sex and violence, and there is some strong language.
2. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
On the flip side of OITNB is Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, in which protagonist Kimmy maintains her sunny and hopeful demeanor despite a traumatic past. Kimmy and a handful of other women were kidnapped and held imprisoned in an underground bunker for 15 years.
This Netflix Originals comedy series opens when she and the others escape the doomsday pastor holding them captive.
Kimmy must come to terms with this brand new world on her own. The problem is that she’s basically the same naïve 14-year-old girl she was when abducted. And the charm of her naivety while she navigates the adult world is what makes this show work.
Kimmy approaches everyone with the same childlike and trusting openness. And this quality gives the writers great opportunities for humor and pathos. Kimmy lives in contrast to her two comic foils, her flamboyant roommate, Titus Andromedon, and her cynical employer, Jaqueline White.
Titus has given up on his dream of stardom to become a costumed street performer in Times Square. Jacqueline’s obsession with status has turned her into a self-absorbed icon of the 1 percent. But that doesn’t stop Kimmy from dealing with them tenderly and treating their somewhat superficial problems as very real.
3. Grace and Frankie
Meet Grace and Frankie, the wives of two law partners, Robert and Sol. Their lives are turned upside-down when their husbands finally admit that they’ve been in love with each other for over 20 years and no longer want to live apart. Despite the fact that these women can’t stand each other, they end up living together.
Grace, a retired cosmetics mogul, and Frankie, an ex-hippie, must support each other after their broken marriages.
The series opens when the men make the announcement at dinner, and we follow Grace and Frankie as they try to come to terms with the upheaval in their lives. Frankie, who sincerely loves her husband, feels wounded by his abandonment.
Tight-laced Grace is angry that everything she thought she could depend on is gone.
This Netflix Originals show hits all the comedic spots you’d expect. But the touching moments of real honesty, particularly between Frankie and Sol, elevate this series above the usual sitcom fare. And with Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Sam Waterston, and Martin Sheen, Grace and Frankie is brimming with seasoned talent.
4. House Of Cards
Despite the scandal surrounding lead actor Kevin Spacey and the subsequent cancellation of the show, House of Cards is an intense political drama well worth a view. This thriller documents the vengeance exacted by Congressman Francis Underwood (Kevin Spacey) as he pays back everyone in Washington D.C. he thinks wronged him on his rise to prominence.
His schemes go all the way to the White House, too. Underwood and his wife, Claire (Robin Wright), are both incredibly corrupt and move through the D.C. landscape like snakes in the grass in a ruthless campaign for power.
What makes House of Cards so addictive is the conflict the writers have created by making Underwood both the villain and hero of his own story. This American version of an original BBC series doesn’t use kid gloves when showing us how low Underwood will go to satisfy his ambitions, and careful writing and superior acting make sure he never goes too far.
Both Spacey and the writing team have developed Underwood as a nuanced character with many sides.
5. Stranger Things
Both winsome and frightening, Stranger Things has taken America by storm with its nostalgic take on the 1980s horror movie. Do you like Stephen King? Did you love movies like ET and War Games when they came out? Do you miss the days when kids could go outside and play for hours, and nobody pressed charges?
Then you’ll love Stranger Things.
The show follows small-town high school students while they battle an insidious evil released by a secret government laboratory in the middle of nowhere. Noah Schnapp plays Will Byers, the freshman who disappears into a mysterious dimension known as the “Upside Down.” At the same time, “Eleven” (Millie Bobby Brown), a strange girl with unusual powers, escapes from the secret lab.
Will’s friend, Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), finds her and hides her from pursuit. It seems that the lab has been performing questionable experiments on children like Eleven, and only these special kids seem to be able to control the monster the lab has unleashed.
Starring ‘80s iconic actress Winona Ryder as the slightly mad and awfully frazzled single mom of two, this Netflix Originals series features an outstanding cast, including David Harbour as Jim Hopper.
6. Fuller House
This reboot of the 1990s TV favorite has gotten lots of attention from fans of the original series. Full House aired on network television from 1987 to 1995 and starred John Stamos and comedian Bob Saget. In Fuller House, however, little DJ Tanner has grown up and has three kids of her own.
As a new widow, she teams up with her sister, Stephanie, and childhood friend, Kimmy, to help raise them. Just like her father did when he found himself a widower in the original series! The cast features the original characters and actors from the show, except for the littlest sister, Michelle Tanner, who was played by twins Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen.
The first season is replete with the same hokey, family-friendly humor as the original, but that’s not always a bad thing if you’re looking for something light-hearted. We don’t get many cute sitcoms on network television anymore, so it’s refreshing to have something you can watch with the kids that doesn’t feel completely outdated.
7. 13 Reasons Why
Netflix Originals launched this series in 2017 to a slew of controversy. Based on the novel by Jay Asher, the series deals with hot-button high school issues in the 21st century. Unfortunately, these issues include bullying, rape, and suicide.
Protagonist Clay Jensen (Dylan Minnette) tries to unravel the reasons behind the suicide of his crush and coworker, Hannah Baker, while listening to the cassette tapes she recorded detailing her decision to end her life. It’s a story containing shocking events, and just when you think the worst has happened, it leads to yet another outrage.
Hannah narrates the bullying, abuse, and ostracism she suffered in 13 separate audio cassettes, calling out those who assaulted her and the friends who failed to help her. This is made all the more tragic, as she narrates from beyond the grave, and Clay must listen passively, unable to change the past.
This drama will have you on the edge of your seat wondering just what could have driven her to such a tragic end. And as the story unfolds, you’ll find yourself thinking very differently about how we treat other people.
This reason alone makes 13 Reasons Why a must-watch series.
Daredevil is the first of the Netflix Originals forays into superhero TV, released in 2015 to wide acclaim, and garnering the award for Best New Media Television Series from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror. Netflix contracted with Marvel to explore the backstories of some of its more interesting, and perhaps, less sympathetic, heroes.
Each show has its own dark twist, unlike the more family-friendly superhero fare on network television.
In Daredevil, Matt Murdock is a blind lawyer by day and the masked crime fighter Daredevil by night. Blinded in a chemical spill as a child, his other senses heightened to superhuman levels. As a master of martial arts, he works as a vigilante to bring down the bad guys of Hell’s Kitchen.
Tinged with moral ambiguity, Daredevil is a comic book show for grown-ups, with striking cinematography and a gritty undertone that takes the action in some unexpected directions. Aside from the comic book aspects, you’ll find Daredevil a gripping crime drama that will have you binge-watching through all the available seasons.
9. Marvel’s Jessica Jones
Also harboring adult themes such as around rape and abusive relationships, Jessica Jones is the story of a reluctant superhero played by Krysten Ritter. Jessica gave up the cape to launch her own private investigative firm. Unfortunately, her first battle is against her own horrific past. Kilgrave (David Tennant), the villain who used mind control to force her to bend to his every sick demand confronts Jessica.
She finds that she must overcome her own fears to save the next young woman he targets. Battling PTSD, as well as Kilgrave’s exceptional mental abilities, Jessica fights for justice and her own life to bring him down in this riveting Netflix Originals series.
Her failure as a superhero has left Jessica stumbling through low-paying detective jobs and drinking whiskey straight from the bottle. Self-loathing and emotionally paralyzed, she’s content to get numb and get by until Kilgrave walks back into her life.
At one time, Jessica was a puppet to his demands. He forced her to dress as he liked her to dress and smile upon command. He even forced her to kill an innocent woman on his orders. Kilgrave’s psychic control powers require a bit of suspension of disbelief.
However, once you buy into the premise, you’ll quickly become addicted to this show.
Both Ritter and Tennant deliver stellar performances as this drama of good versus evil plays out. Often lauded as a feminist icon, Jessica Jones is the superhero story that every grown-up girl should watch.
10. Luke Cage
Another member of the Defenders, Luke Cage is invulnerable to physical damage, but not emotional damage. This low-key and thoughtful superhero is an ex-con himself. Played by the deliciously subtle Mike Colter, Luke Cage tries to run from his own past.
Then, circumstances inspire him to return to Harlem and stand up for what’s right.
We watch as Luke get his own origin story that explores his time as a cop and how he ended up in prison after being framed. It also follows Luke as he agrees to undergo experiments in exchange for a reduced sentence. When the corrupt prison warden sabotages the experiment, it gifts Luke with his superhuman invulnerability.
The show has a dark, noir feel to it, and Colter’s portrayal as the stoic superhero is spot on. A deep backstory on one of Marvel’s black superheroes is far overdue, and Luke’s life in Harlem and his decision to return feels heartbreakingly real.
Best of all, this Netflix Originals take on the Marvel Universe features some spectacular, and unexpected, bad guys.
11. Iron Fist
Played by Finn Jones, protagonist Danny Rand, must reconnect with his family after having gone missing for 15 years. Iron Fist is certainly one of Marvel’s more unique heroes. Rand is a Buddhist monk and martial arts specialist who can call up the powers of a mystical “Iron Fist.”
Presumed dead in a plane crash for 15 years when the show opens, Rand must convince his family he’s still alive. Not surprisingly, Rand soon ends up in a mental institution. We soon discover that Rand is the current Iron Fist and sworn enemy of The Hand. This supervillain drug cartel manipulates people with both dangerous substances and healing medicines.
The Hand has infiltrated Rand Enterprises, and our hero must work to remove the criminal element from this family business.
Fans have praised the show for its loyalty to the original source material. Others have lauded Iron Fist’s interesting side characters. With two seasons available to watch, catch up with Rand’s origin story before watching Marvel’s The Defenders in the penultimate battle.
12. Altered Carbon
Originally intended as a movie, science fiction fans will love Altered Carbon. This series stars Joel Kinnaman, James Purefoy, and Martha Higareda. Based on the 2003 novel by Richard K. Morgan, this cyberpunk thriller is set 300 years in the future.
Human beings are digitized and moved from body to body. Death has been defeated. Protagonist Takeshi Kovacs was put “on ice” for rebellion. But, a wealthy client promises to restore him to a new body if he solves a murder.
13. Seven Seconds
A northeastern city explodes with racial tension after a white cop hits and injures a black teen. Afterward, an attempt to cover up the accident follows, along with the trail of a century. Clare-Hope Ashitey, Regina King, and Beau Knapp star.
This emotion Netflix Original series was created by The Killing producer, Veena Sud.
14. Kiss Me First
This virtual world action thriller features Tallulah Haddon, Simona Brown, and Matthew Beard. Leila, a lonely 17-year-old gamer, meets Tess on the gaming site, Agora. Tess is a confident party girl, but harbors a dark secret. When Tess disappears in real life, Leila assumes her identity to solve the mystery.
“Skins” writer Bryan Elsey is penning the script, adpated from Lottie Moggach’s best selling young adult novel. Netflix is pairing up with U.K. Channel 4. And producers are promising state-of-the-art CGI animation to put viewers slap-dab in the middle of action on Agora.
Channel 4 Head of Drama, Piers Wenger told the press:
“This is a thrilling and truly groundbreaking series which takes an emotional look at the lives of a group of young gamers and the truth which exists behind their online life. We are thrilled to be welcoming Bryan Elsley back to E4 to lead a group of new writers and to helm this exciting new show.”
This new animated series is from Matt Groening, the brilliant mind behind The Simpsons and Futurama. This fantasy show follows the misadventures of Princess Bean of Dreamland. She hard drinker and hangs out with an elf companion.
And talk about kicking a princess while she’s down — she also has her own private demon in tow.
16. The Umbrella Academy
Penned by Gerard Way (yes, that Gerard Way — former frontman of My Chemical Romance), The Umbrella Academy is coming to the small screen. And heading the voice talent cast is Ellen Page.
Announced last July, this Netflix original series follows a family of superheroes that aren’t all that super. The cast of misfit heroes — The Monocle, Spaceboy, Number Five, The Horror, and The White Violin — reunites to solve the mystery behind their adoptive father’s death.
17. Watership Down
A year after the passing of beloved children’s author Richard Adams, we have the new animated adaptation of his first novel, Watership Down, to look forward to. Critics admonish Adams because of the blunt and realistic portrayal of life as a wild rabbit in the English countryside.
The 1978 cartoon adaptation brought even more outcry. Promoted as a cartoon for young ones, its scenes of violence left some kids terrified.
The new show creators say this Netflix original series is less violent. Netflix is teaming up with the BBC to remake this classic. According to executive producers, they’re also going to spotlight the heroics of the female rabbits in the new show more than the original.
Rory Aitken, executive producer told The Telegraph:
“While we won’t shy away from the darkness in the book, visually it won’t be as brutal and scarring.”
18. The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
The Coen Brothers are back. And this time, they’re on television. The Academy-Award winning producers of Fargo are bringing an anthology of Western tales to Netflix.
With six, one-hour episodes, the show will star James Franco, Zoe Kazan, and Tim Blake Nelson in the eponymous role. Their treatment of “True Grit” makes them the go-to team for Westerns.
Economic inequality is one of the leading issues the world faces today. The rich becoming richer is an undeniable statistical fact. It is only natural that storytellers created a show around the problem, especially considering that 3% is Brazillian. The country is at once an emerging global economic power, but also famous for its favela slums.
The show is not only a glimpse into our future but also a striking commentary on everyday life in Brazil.
3% is set in a dystopian future defined by a strict divide between progress and devastation. Rich and poor. Offshore and inland.
Through a rigorous and brutal system called The Process, people have a chance to get a better life. The problem is, only 3% make it through, and leave the continent for one of the offshore islands. But those who fail might not even make it out of the trials alive.
Directed by City of God cinematographer Cesar Charlone, 3% is Netflix’s first Portuguese language TV show. And it’s a fresh take on the genre, following the participants of Process 104. On a production level, it might lag behind a little but makes up for it through tight storytelling and a compelling vision of survivors in a broken world.
Intersecting the struggles of healthy family life with the high stakes of organized crime is a favorite TV topic. The Sopranos, Breaking Bad, and Fargo are all great examples of this. And, the stories are popular for a good reason. Have we not all dreamt of what would happen if we started to break the law in some fashion?
At the very least, we’re curious about what that life entails and what would happen if we crossed that line. Ozark is Netflix’s answer to this question.
Financial planner Mike Byrde (Jason Bateman) lives a quiet life in the suburbs of Chicago. He’s married to his wife Wendy (Laura Linney), with whom he has two kids: Charlotte (Sofia Hublitz) and Jonah (Skylar Gaertner). Life is comfortable until suddenly he relocates the entire family to a resort community in the Missouri Ozarks.
Unbeknownst to the rest of the Byrdes, Mike has laundered money for a Mexican drug lord. After things go wrong, he not only has to save his family and repay his debts but deal with local criminals and the tribulations of a family who wants to go back home.
21. Evil Genius
It sounds like a story ripped from a Saw movie. Back in 2003, a man with a bomb strapped around his neck attempted to rob a bank, lest the explosive would kill him. Known as the Pizza Bomber, the case made tabloid headlines, leaving people to wonder who could do such a thing.
Following the success of their true crime documentaries, Netflix released the story of the Pizza Bomber with Evil Genius: The True Story of America’s Most Diabolical Bank Heist. With twists and turns only real life can create, Evil Genius is a captivating story.
It’s a story of an overzealous investigation, mass media attention, and the extremes some humans are willing to go. The show explores the set-up and aftermath of the failed heist, making it a fascinating portrayal of crime in the 21st century. And it’s just too crazy.
In a four-part docu-series, Evil Genius is available for true crime fans right now. It’s too strange of a story you’re not going to believe.
22. The Keepers
In November 1969, a young nun at a Catholic school was found dead. Popular with students and faculty alike the case brought up one question: Who killed Sister Cathy? Another entry in Netflix’s collection of engrossing true crime shows, The Keepers strikes a more sinister tone than most.
While murder comes in many forms, barely any of them are institutionally sanctioned.
The Keepers tells the story and the real-life disappearance and murder of Cathy Cesnik. Her former students believe that the story told to the public was a cover-up, and reopen the case decades later. But more than just the murder, the school where Sister Cathy taught faces allegations of sexual abuse.
And in this tight-knit community, the question arises whether or not the authorities are more willing to protect the lives of their children or the sanctity of their church. And if they’re willing to go far enough to kill.
The abuse of power and the deep scars of trauma are the driving force of this seven-part miniseries. It’s an infuriating portrayal of organized injustice.
Serial killers have taken on mythological proportions in our culture. They are the proverbial monster under our beds we warn our children about. They are the antithesis of what makes us human — the dark reflection in the corners of our collective humanity.
More than any other crime story, serial killers have captured our imaginations. Despite the continuous presence of their stories, Netflix’s Mindhunter can carve out its original angle on serial killers.
Inspired by true events, Mindhunter follows the early days of criminal psychology at the FBI. Set in 1977, the story follows young and ambitious Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff), and his quest to gain an understanding of criminality that goes beyond the currently accepted dogma.
Together with colleague Bill Tench (Holt McCallany) and psychologist Wendy Carr (Anna Torv), he originates the Behaviour Science Unit. They begin to interview incarcerated serial killers, with hopes of using the gained knowledge to solve existing cases.
However, Holden is not anticipating everything: What toll will be starring into the abyss have? And when will the monsters in the closet strike back?
With directors such as David Fincher attached, Mindhunter was a critical success, making it one of the top shows for Netflix.
24. The Confession Tapes
Imagine being imprisoned for a crime you didn’t commit. You were in the wrong place at the wrong time, coerced into a false confession. What does something like this do to a person? Netflix’s The Confession Tapes seeks to answer precisely this.
In season one, seven episodes deal with six different murder cases. And in season two, they add four more.
The show questions the validity of the confessions that lead to convictions. Using experts on false confessions, miscarriage of justice, criminal law, and psychology, we look at each case through a different lens.
What if the crime did not occur as previously assumed? What if the guilty party is still out there? Its an indictment on how the police are conducting its interrogation, and a mystery until the end.
The Confession Tapes are available to all Netflix subscribers right now.
25. The Frankenstein Chronicles
Similarly to its titular character, The Frankenstein Chronicles has a mixed history of its life and death. Formerly a British TV show, it was canceled, only for Netflix to renew it after a three-year hiatus. Whereas Netflix is at this point, famous for being the number one address for crime documentaries, The Frankenstein Chronicles takes a different approach.
The show follows Inspector John Marlott (Sean Bean). His investigation leads him to the dead body of a small child. It is, however, not an ordinary corpse. No actual child looks like this, as it appears to be from the bodies of seven or eight children stitched together. Marlott sets out to track down whoever was responsible for this monstrous crime, as he dives headfirst into the world of the 19th century.
It’s a century defined by obscene wealth, contrasted with the daily struggle of the destitute.
Despite its initial gritty set-up, The Frankenstein Chronicles is not as much of a horror show as you might think. Loosely inspired by Mary Shelly’s original book, the show takes the premise of creating life from dead flesh and turns it into a crime mystery. If that sounds like an appealing combination, that’s because it is.
Avoiding the trappings of either genre, the mix feels at once fresh, yet intuitively familiar — a unique entry among gritty TV shows.
Originally titled “One of Us,” Retribution is another BBC Netflix picked up. Set in the remote lands of northern Scottland, the gritty landscape is as much a character on the show as the people. It’s a rugged land, where only a few people stay to call it home.
Hard on its inhabitants and their character, one wonders how the places we live in shape us.
Set in the Scottish Highlands, the shows tells the story of two childhood sweethearts coming home from their honeymoon, only to be found brutally murdered.
Their families and neighbors are devastated by this loss to their lives and community. However, events turn even darker when a strange man arrives in the small village, injured after a car crash. Things are not as they seem, and the whole town begins to wonder: Is this man the killer?
Award-nominated and winning, Retribution was a massive success in its home country. With its singularly British setting, it creates a feeling of claustrophobia, that contrasts with the vast emptiness of its environment. The people are trapped here — either by their choice of community or by deadly circumstance.
Netflix picked up the miniseries for international distribution, with all four episodes available.
27. Four Seasons in Havana
For a long time, noir dominated the gritty crime genre. The hard-boiled detectives, the femme fatale, the low lighting, and the smoke-filled rooms. The 40s and 50s loved these types of anti-hero stories. The stories whose influence we feel still today.
Four Seasons in Havana, based on a popular series of novels, follows this grand tradition of old-school crime stories. But instead of being a mere homage, it adds a gritty Cuban twist.
Mario Conde (Jorge Perugorría) is a middle-aged, divorced philanderer who smokes and drinks too much. Wistful and melancholic, he drifts through a year in Havana. An easy enough life, were it not for his job investigating the dark side of the capital.
With drugs, prostitution, and corruption, the beauty of Cuba is not what it seems.
With gripping writing and beautiful visuals, critics and audiences lauded the show for its realistic portrayal of the poverty ravishing parts of the island. Four Seasons in Havana follows an unlikely hero navigating the moral decay that took ahold of his country, and himself.
28. Making A Murder
This Netflix Original Series has one season so far, with ten episodes telling the story of Steven Avery. Steven Avery was convicted of sexual assault and murder. Watch Making A Murderer to see how, with DNA evidence, Steven Avery was exonerated from his conviction.
29. Hip-Hop Evolution
Hip-Hop Evolution a Netflix Original Series is exactly what it sounds like! This series will walk you through the drastic evolution of hip-hop in American society from the 1970’s all the way through the 1990’s.
This documentary series is both amusing and informational at the same time.
30. F is for Family
‘F is for Family’ is raunchy television sitcom that takes place in the 1970’s. As an adult cartoon this is one of the first attempts from Netflix.
31. A Series Of Unfortunate Events
Based on the children’s book series, this Netflix Original is a must-watch for kids and adults alike. Many of us have enjoyed binge-reading this series and now it is time to take a turn for binge-watching the first season available on Netflix!
32. BoJack Horseman
With three seasons available to stream on Netflix, this original series is a witty television sitcom that is perfect for the days when you’re in need of a laugh. Try out this series if you’re one that loves adult sitcoms/cartoons!
Binge-watch it today on Netflix.
33. Arrested Development
Last but not least, ‘Arrested Development’ is also one of the first Netflix Originals, airing for the first time on Netflix in 2013; this series currently has four seasons available to stream. The program brings the viewer along on all of the unlikely events that occur in a very dysfunctional family.
This quirky show is guaranteed to give you a laugh or two; you may even find yourself relating to the characters, as embarrassing as that may be!
34. The Ranch
The Ranch is set in the current day and followers a group of ranchers on their ranch in Colorado. The main actor that most people will recognize is Ashton Kutcher who plays Colt in the show.
35. Project MC 2
A Teenage spy, teams up with 3 other super smart girls, who use their science skills to help save a prince’s space launch. Watch Project Mc² season 2 exclusively on Netflix now.
“Chelsea” was presented as something different than your average late-night talk show. It becomes available for streaming at 12:01 a.m. Pacific time, Wednesdays through Fridays, but given the habits of the streaming audience, it’s meant to be watched on the viewer’s schedule.
37. The Get Down
The Get Down tells the story of of New York spawned a new art form despite being on the edge of bankrupcy. This movie follows the rise of hip hop during the disco times of the 70s.
Bloodline follows the story of a bitter family that is almost torn about by the dark secrets of the past. When the “black sheep” of the family threatens to expose those secrets the siblings must decide what is more important.
39. The Central Park Five
This scripted drama series centers around the infamous crime committed in New York City in 1989 when a jogger was assaulted in Central Park and five teenagers were wrongly convicted and sent to prison for the crime. The series looks at how the crime affected the citizens of NYC, the media feeding frenzy that followed it, and the eventual release of the wrongly accused men.
The series will be directed by Ava Duvernay, known for Thirteenth, a Netflix original documentary that depicts the direct line from slavery to prison for many African Americans. The Netflix original series The Central Park Five has a special significance now, since, in 1989, the current US President took out a full-page ad in The New York Times asking for the return of the death penalty to New York state based on the case and his belief that the perpetrators were guilty.
40. The Last Dance
The heyday of the Chicago Bulls and Michael Jordan is explored in this ten-part documentary series from Netflix original series and ESPN. With the expansion of sports television in the 1990s and around the clock coverage of the individuals involved, players became people you grew to know intimately.
More accessibility to athletes as people and not just players worked together to tie the legend to a man that any fan could relate to as they would a friend.
Not only was Michael Jordan known as a fantastic basketball player, you also got to know what a good-natured, down-to-earth, and even funny man he could be. Through interviews with the players and footage of the important moments in championship games, you gain a greater understanding of the many threads woven together to create such a powerful squad.
The ‘Last Dance’ of the title refers to the Bull’s final championship season after they had already won five championships with the legendary team that included Scottie Pippen and was led by coach Phil Jackson.
41. Our Planet
This is a sweeping nature project that has been shot and edited over the course of four years. It continues to display the breathtaking camerawork and vivid imagery the likes of which you may have previously seen in the BBC productions Planet Earth and Planet Earth II.
Now the team behind both documentary series has teamed up with Netflix to create the Netflix original series Our Planet.
Like the previous shows from this team, Our Planet combines dazzling, picturesque cinematography with brilliant HD footage taken from the enormous and majestic mountains of the world to the smallest nooks and crannies inhabited by tiny animals and insects.
Our Planet is a mind-blowing confection for nature lovers and urbanites alike, and the four-year wait to see some of the most amazing images you have witnessed in your life is well worth it.
42. Raising Dion
Comic book writer Dennis Liu knew in 2015 that his comic book, Raising Dion, was a diamond in the rough and tried doing something completely different with it. He wrote the first comic book and, with total belief in his creation and its value to young children discovering their individuality shot a trailer/short film based on the book.
In the Netflix original series, Dion’s mother discovers that her seven-year-old son is developing superpowers. She takes it upon herself to raise a boy into a young man who will know that his powers are something to be used judiciously. She tries to navigate Dion through the perils he faces from those who might try to use his superpowers for nefarious reasons while also navigating the treacherous minefield of being a single mother to a seven-year-old boy.
This story is very different from the other superhero stories we have grown used to seeing and already has many fans champing at the bit to see the Netflix original series, which is also directed by Dennis Liu. The ten-episode season promises a new and original perspective to a genre that many people felt had run out of ideas.
The Netflix original series follows the same story as the comic and stars Alisha Wainright as Dion’s mother, Nicole, and Michael B. Jordan as his father. The series which intertwines the challenges of mothering a young man and teaching a future superhero about right and wrong, promises to be a wholly original take on the genre that many are eagerly awaiting.
This show is a first for a Netflix original series because it is the first series shot entirely using the Arabic language and a cast of Middle Eastern actors. Shot in Jordan, this six-episode supernatural thriller follows a group of Arab teenagers whose lives change when one of them accidentally releases a mystical creature with power over supernatural forces while summoning a teenage boy.
There are both male and female characters with compelling back stories in the show, and it looks to be an exciting addition to Netflix.
There are so many options to choose from when it comes to watching any of the original series available only on Netflix. The new offerings range from documentaries to dramas and even contain childlike magic and a dash of mystical wonder.
There is something to entertain and engage any viewer of quality original programming.
Netflix really knows how to tune into the zeitgeist and deliver what its audience wants. The company has historically been shy about revealing its viewer data. But it certainly isn’t shy about using it to deliver the kind of fresh, original content that has turned it into an award-winning entertainment studio.
From innovative shows like Stranger Things to truly diverse casts like OITNB to superhero shows for an adult audience, Netflix is leading the way in entertainment trends. Catch one of these Netflix Original shows for your next marathon and enjoy.