Need a new Movie or TV Show for your next Sofa sesh?
Here's your guide to the best series to watch on Netflix right now
Netflix's offering of TV shows is so extensive that there really is something for everyone. But with such a vast catalogue comes the classic conundrum plaguing modern streamers: there's just too much choice. We know, we know, how ungrateful we sound! But if you've ever spent 45+ minutes scrolling the endless reels of Netflix series while your dinner gets cold, you'll know what we're talking about.
So, to help you stop the mindless scrolling, we've taken it upon ourselves to handpick the very best in TV gold that Netflix has to offer, spanning every genre from award-winning period dramas to classic sit-coms and cult sci-fi phenomenons. Whether you're in it for the true crime drama (Carole who?), the feminist comedies, or simply the very best in reality TV – we've made sure there's something here to satisfy your binge-watching desires.
The latest show to get everyone talking is Maid, a harrowing 10-part Netflix drama starring real-life mother-daughter duo, Andie MacDowell and Margaret Qualley. It's about a young woman named Alex, who flees her abusive partner and struggles to make ends meet for her three-year-old daughter, Mady, as she navigates motherhood, PTSD, looking after her own mother, all whilst working as a full time cleaner to secure a better future. You'll need all the tissues for this one!
You'll also be well aware of Squid Game by name, the Korean Netflix drama that has pretty much taken over social media since launching on the platform on 17th September.
Prior to that, it was Clickbait that had us all in a frenzy - a mind-boggling drama that'll leave you at the edge of your seat. The show follows family man Nick Brewer, who's abducted in a crime online with a sinister twist. It's all very creepy, just how we like our dark thrillers.
You can also dive into the latest season of South African teen drama, Blood & Water. The show is back by popular demand after a successful first season in 2020, continuing to follow Puleng (Ama Qamata), a high school girl whose desperate to find her sister Phumelele, who was kidnapped as part of a human trafficking network shortly after birth. Full of mystery, suspense and all the drama, the show has been compared to the likes of Gossip Girl and Elite, meaning it's an imminent yes from us!
Who: Starring real-life mother-daughter duo, Andie MacDowell and Margaret Qualley.
What: Maid is a harrowing 10-part Netflix drama about a young woman named Alex, who flees her abusive partner and struggles to make ends meet for her three-year-old daughter, Mady, as she navigates motherhood, PTSD, looking after her own mother, all whilst working as a full time cleaner to secure a better future.
Why binge? Everything about this is brilliant. It's also real emotional rollercoaster so brace yourself for all the feels!
Who: Lee Jung-Jae plays the lead but HoYeon Jung is definitely the breakout star of the show.
What: Written and directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk, the nine-part Dystopian thriller is all about a deathly survival game that targets the most desperate and debt-riddled people in the city of Seoul, luring them to risk everything for a life-changing cash prize of ₩45.6 billion (£28m). In the series, 450 people - all of whom are drowning in serious debt - are invited to play a cryptic game that includes a bunch of challenges based on an old Korean children's game. However, things quickly take a twisted turn when the participants realise that they've put their lives on the line, with a loss resulting in immediate death, and a brutal murder at that!
Why: As Netflix's biggest series launch of all time, Squid Game is an absolute must-watch. I mean, haven't you seen all the memes? If that's not enough to get you on board then nothing will!
Blood & Water
Who: Puleng Khumalo
What: The South African teen drama first hit Netflix in 2020, becoming a hit among viewers for its mystery and suspense.
Why: The show follows a Cape Town teen, who's search for her missing sister leads her to infiltrate a school and a whole new life. Fans have compared dramatic plot twists to Gossip Girl (the original) and Elite, which already sounds promising to us.
What: If a creepy freakishly realistic drama outlining society's toxic attachment to the internet...
Why: The show follows family man „Nick Brewer“, who’s abducted in a crime online with a sinister twist. There’s a lot to get your head around, so make sure you are alert when watching!
Who: Real life victims and their families.
What: A series about crime cases that never reached a resolution, exploring the possibilities that were never investigated.
Why: Warning: the mysteries surrounding these unsolved crimes are extremely gripping. Series 2 dropped back in October 2020 and all fingers are crossed for a third.
Tiny Pretty Things
Who: Emerging stars Brennan Clost, Barton Cowperthwaite, Bayardo De Murguia, Damon J. Gillespie.
What: A drama about the battle to become prima ballerina at an elite New York ballet school.
Why: Like an extended version of Black Swan, 2020's Tiny Pretty Things is the drama that takes us inside the cutthroat world of dance in New York.
When They See Us
Who: Marquis Rodriguez, Jharrel Jerome, Asante Blackk, Caleel Harris, Ethan Herisse.
What: When a woman is attacked whilst jogging in Central Park in the summer of 1989, five black teens from Harlem are arrested, interrogated and convicted. They are the 'Central Park Five': Kevin Richardson, Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Korey Wise and Raymond Santana, and this is a four-part dramatised account of their real story.
Why binge: It's a gut-wrenching, gripping look at how five young men of colour were victims of a broken justice system and systemic racism – something that director Ava DuVernay reminds us is still very much alive (Trump's reaction is shown through press conference coverage), and how what happened to the Central Park Five back in 1989 could just as easily happen today.
Who: Claire Foy, Matt Smith, Olivia Colman, Helena Bonham Carter, Josh O'Connor.
What: This Golden Globe-winning series chronicles the life of Queen Elizabeth II from the 1940s to modern times.
Why binge: You've got four seasons of royal drama to catch up on before S5 drops – though we're not too sure when that will be, Netflix announced the casting of Elizabeth Debicki as the new Princess Diana, taking over from Emma Corrin, who portrayed the late royal in season 4.
Who: Richard Madden, Keeley Hawes, Gina McKee.
What: After thwarting a terrorist attack, war veteran David Budd (Richard Madden) finds work in the Met Police's Royalty and Specialist Protection branch, as a bodyguard for the controversial home secretary Julia Montague (Keeley Hawes). Budd finds himself torn between his duty to protect and everything he believes in.
Why binge: After that opening scene on the train, you won't need a reason. You'll be hooked.
Behind Her Eyes
Who: Eve Hewson, Tom Bateman & Simona Brown
What: A single mother who enters a world of twisted mind games when she begins to have an affair with her psychiatrist boss while secretly befriending his mysterious and complex wife.
Why Binge: The twist at the very end is so unexpected you will be thinking about it for days after. This is not one of those shows you could just give up on half way.
Who: Penn Badgley, Elizabeth Lail, Victoria Pedretti, Ambyr Childers, James Scully.
What: In its first season, You follows the story of student Guinevere Beck, who meets articulate, smart bookworm Joe in the New York bookstore he works in. But Joe becomes increasingly obsessed with Beck, stalking her, stealing her belongings, and doing everything in his power to keep them together. Spoiler alert: things get a whole lot darker than Joe just nicking her phone. And that's all before the second season, which is even more twisted and sees Joe relocate to Los Angeles where he meets Love Quinn.
Why binge: We are seriously jealous of anyone who hasn't yet binged this WTF drama. Now that season 3 is finally here, it's time to settle in for a binge-watching session before Twitter reveals all the spoilers - best get the snacks in!
Who: Kaitlyn Dever, Toni Collette, Merritt Wever.
What: Based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning article An Unbelievable Story Of Rapes, this series tells the story of 18-year-old Marie Adler (played by Booksmart's Kaitlyn Denver), a young woman who claims a man broke into her home and raped her. However, the local police force – and her family – refuse to believe her. But when two female detectives in another state who are investigating a serial rapist hear of Marie's case, they start on the path to trust.
Why binge: It's based on a true story that makes for harrowing and uncomfortable viewing, but that is exactly why it's such a vital show.
Who: Dan Schneider.
What: Another must-watch from Netflix's recent roster of documentaries, The Pharmacist tells the story small town pharmacist Dan Schneider. After his son is murdered in a drug-related shooting in New Orleans in 1999, Dan embarks on a relentless mission to find his son's killer. Soon, he realises that hordes of seemingly young and healthy people are bringing prescriptions for heavy doses of OxyContin into his pharmacy – and they were all being prescribed by the same woman. He knew there was a problem long before the opioid crisis gained critical attention, and set about trying to save the lives of other young people in his community.
Why binge: Netflix has a ton of true crime documentaries, but what sets The Pharmacist apart is that Dan isn't just sitting in a leather armchair recounting what happened – he recorded almost all of it on video cassette and camera at the time, which gives this documentary a gripping immediacy that others lack.
What: From the mind of Charlie Brooker, this dark sci-fi anthology series examines society's reliance on, and obsession with, modern technology – and its consequences. Though this narrative underpins each episode, Black Mirror's five seasons could not be more diverse – there's political satire, futuristic worlds, serial killers, war, and good old romance.
Why binge: Though we love how varied it is, that also means you probably won't love every episode, so here are our favourites to get you started: Nosedive(S3, E1), Crocodile (S4, E3), Shut Up And Dance(S3, E3), The Entire History Of You(S1, E3) and Be Right Back (S2, E1).
The Haunting of Hill House
Who: Oliver Jackson-Cohen and Victoria Pedretti.
What: Based (very loosely) on the famously scary novels by Shirley Jackson, the jump-a-second Netflix drama follows siblings who grew up in what is now the most famous haunted house in the country. As adults, they are reunited due to a tragic turn of events and must finally, for the first time, relive the horrors of their childhood.
Why binge: If you don't like sleeping and love a good nightmare this is for you. It's the best TV horror series we know.
Who: Alison Brie, Donald Glover and Ken Jeong
What: A lawyer has his law degree revoked and is forced to go back to school and finds himself at Greendale Community College where one of the teachers is none-other than Ken Jeong of Hangover and Crazy Rich Asians fame. It's the most random school of all time.
Why Binge: This is pure laugh-out-loud escapism across six seasons. So prepare to give those abs a good work out.
The End of The F**king World
Who: Jessica Barden and Alex Lawther
What: This sleeper Netflix hit follows two sixth form students who go on a road trip which involves murder, estranged fathers and comedic police chases. It's a coming of age TV show, but one like you have ever seen before.
Why Binge: This black comedy is in 20 minute digestible episodes so you will be whizzing through the two seasons before you know it.
Never Have I Ever
Who: Maitreyi Ramakrishnan
What: Never Have I Ever is an coming-of-age comedy about the complicated life of a modern-day first-generation Indian American teenage girl. The series stars newcomer, Maitreyi Ramakrishnan as Devi, an overachieving high school sophomore who has a short fuse that gets her into difficult situations. Never Have I Ever is created by executive producer Mindy Kaling, with Lang Fisher serving as executive producer, showrunner and writer.
Why Binge: Mindy Kaling is an absolute genius and this laugh-out-loud comedy is a breath of fresh air. Plus, there are two whole seasons to get stuck into!
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