Best Netflix Original Series

netflix-original-series1

Netflix offers a mammoth library of movies, series, and documentaries that are sure to please, particularly when it comes to original content. While some are decidedly mainstream, many cater to niche interests. No matter what you’re in the mood to binge, there’s a Netflix original series waiting.

 

Love

When a nice guy’s girlfriend cheats and leaves, he meets Mickey (Gillian Jacobs, Community), a wild child struggling with sobriety.

The show is slower moving, and provides a great mix of comedy and emotion. Some viewers will find its odd mix of personalities frustrating, but others will find that’s part of Love’s charm.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

Daredevil

Hailing from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Daredevil features a blind lawyer (Vinvent D’Onoforio) taking on criminal resurgence through his heightened senses.

The show’s relatively violent, which might be refreshing when compared to the non-stop witty banter of more clever, thoughtful superheroes.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

Everything Sucks

From the world of Freaks and Geeks comes a show celebrating those angsty teen years. Most of the plot revolves around AV Club geeks and drama kids in the town of Borin, Oregon, as they film a movie on a quest for respect.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

BoJack Horseman

The name, premise, and concept of a talking horse—who looks disturbingly human—are a bit hard to take seriously at first, but this adult animation is an excellent depiction of depression.

Bojack (Will Arnett) enjoyed fame and glory during a cherished 90s sitcom run, but now lives a restless and hollow life seeking redemption in Hollywood (or, uh…Hollywoo). He’s not just struggling to make a comeback, however: he’s struggling to become a better person and find happiness.

If it sounds like some boring “on the up and up” arc, it’s definitely not. Bojack is often despicable and frustrating, but loveable because of it: you can’t help but relate to his constant self-sabotage.

Sexuality, addiction, mental illness, and morality are just a few of many themes the show covers. Some episodes get darker than others, and it’s really hard to say if the humor adds levity to the darkness…or sets you up to get sucker-punched. It’s probably some of each.

Funny, serious, and accurate, Bojack Horseman is absolutely worth the watch. Fans of animated adult shows will appreciate its smart dialogue, background sight gags, and running jokes that don’t just pop up once or twice, but continue for entire seasons at a time.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

Stranger Things

Stranger Things follows a group of kids in small-town Indiana in the 1980s as they unravel government experiments and supernatural events.

The first season of the show started a new 80s pop culture fad, while the third recaptured the fun of the first.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

Ozark

A financial advisor (Jason Bateman) moves his family to the Ozarks after issues with a Mexican drug cartel. Ozark is comparable to Breaking Bad: relatable, memorable characters doing bad things with questionable motives.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt manages to combine a childlike kidnapping survivor, a gay black man with an amazing voice, a crazy old lady, and an upper-class divorcee into a hilarious show.

As a teen, Kimmy was kidnapped by a reverend and placed in an underground bunker for 15 years with three other women. The series begins with her escape from the doomsday cult, and follows her struggles to adapt to a world that went on without her.

Ellie Kemper and Tituss Burgess add to the already great performances, and keep audiences on their toes. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is addictively funny. There’s also an interactive finale special, which will be supremely satisfying when you’ve binged the other four seasons and want just a little more.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

The Crown

This fictionalized look at the British royal family is the perfect example of a subtle drama. With an understated but beautiful score, sublime casting—which changes to conform with the characters’ ages—and extraordinary attention to detail in sets and costumes, you feel like you’re watching the real royal family.

Some storylines focus on the political aspects of Queen Elizabeth’s coronation and reign, but most hone in on personal trials that, of course, can’t be judged for accuracy. While the platform says it’s dramatized, Netflix also refuses to add disclaimers.

Still, it feels remarkably realistic, and that’s its appeal. One of the best elements of the show is how it manages to create and maintain tension, even when very little action is happening on-screen.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

The Witcher

The Witcher is based on a video game series and book, and is now a pretty well-known Netflix original series.

It stars the popular Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia, a monster-hunter struggling to find his place amongst humans who, at times, can be even more monstrous than the creatures he hunts. The extensive cast of characters can get confusing, but this fantasy adventure series is still fun to dig into.

Watch it on Netflix here.

 

GLOW

This comedy focuses on a group of down-on-their-luck actresses in the 80s. They get roped into “GLOW”: Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, a television show masquerading as a real wrestling series.

Watch it on Netflix here.

via GIPHY

Netflix original series could probably fill their own platform, by now: new content is published and updated constantly, luring in new subscribers while keeping existing ones happy—even in the wake of rising prices. The extra money might just be worth it, though, to keep binging the best Netflix original series.

For more Netflix recommendations, check out the best shows to bingehorror TV shows, or every episode of Black Mirror, ranked from worst to best.