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Best shows on Netflix January 2020: Top 49 shows

Stranger Things / Glow / The Good Place - best shows on netflix
(Image credit: Netflix; NBC)

You just got home, and to help you settle down, we've found the best shows on Netflix. Whether you're trying to fill the hole that Friends left, speeding through The Office before it goes to HBO Max or figuring out why everyone loves The Good Place, you've got plenty of episodes to watch. And that's just comedies.

One of the newest best shows on Netflix is The Witcher, starring Henry Cavill, an original from the service that draws from the critically acclaimed video series and books of the same name. It's already risen to the ranks of the best Netflix shows (taking some of the conversation away from The Mandalorian), making it the kind of show that could help Netflix stave off competitors in the war to be the best streaming service.

Other recent gems include season 2 of You, which has kept everybody talking after its release. If you're looking for what to watch off the beaten path, check out our roundup of the best Netflix hidden gems

Rather watch something delectable and delicious? David Chang has another Netflix show: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. Also, as you're probably aware, new episodes of The Great British Baking Show (one of our picks for the best food and cooking shows on Netflix) have been arriving on a regular schedule. And if you're looking for films, see our roundups of the best movies on Netflix and the best family movies on Netflix

Looking towards what's next, Ozark Season 3 just got its release date (March 27, 2020), and we just got the first trailer for the graphic novel adaptation Locke & Key (which is coming on Feb. 7). Oh, and the Stranger Things writers dropped a hint we may get Season 4 this year.

But for those looking for their next favorite series, here are the best shows on Netflix:

Schitt's Creek

Schitt's Creek

(Image credit: Pop TV)

You know how Arrested Development got a bit nihilistic, and didn't really care about endearing its characters to audiences? Schitt's Creek took a similar premise — rich family loses their fortune — but actually managed to create characters you'll feel for, and possibly root for. Created by the father and son team of Eugene and Dan Levy, who also star in the series, Schitt's creek feels especially modern. What's amazing is how it almost never got an audience — until Netflix began streaming the show.

Originally debuting on the Canadian CBC Television network, and eventually appearing on Pop! (a network hidden in the top tiers of most cable packages), Schitt's Creek was super hard to find, which is pretty sad. From hidden gem to widely-appreciated sitcom, Schitt's Creek shows the value of bringing a cult hit to Netflix. Looking to stream the just-debuted season? You might need our guide for how to watch Schitt's Creek season 6 online. Either way, you're watching one of the best shows on Netflix, bar none. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%

Stars: Eugene Levy, Catherine O' Hara, Dan Levy

Creators: Eugene Levy, Dan Levy

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The Witcher

The Witcher (Netflix)

(Image credit: Katalin Vermes/Netflix)

Back in 2001, Polish production house Heritage Films attempted to adapt Andrzej Sapkowski's beloved Witcher novels into a TV series. The result was not very good. But now, armed with a budget and an Anglophone audience, Netflix has tried its hand at a Witcher series, with much better results. Henry Cavill stars as Geralt of Rivia: a roving monster hunter in a dark fantasy world. While Geralt wants nothing more than to ply his trade, he runs afoul of prejudiced townsfolk, ambitious wizards and even foreign royalty. Allied with the devious sorceress Yennefer (Anya Chalotra) and the young Princess Ciri (Freya Allan), Geralt must use his unique talents to protect those he (begrudgingly) loves. We're already tracking The Witcher season 2 news to see what's next for one of the best shows on Netflix.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 55%

Stars: Henry Cavill, Joey Batey, Eamon Farren, Anya Chalotra, Freya Allan

Creators: Lauren Schmidt

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You (Netflix)

You gets creepy mighty fast (Image credit: Beth Dubber/Netflix)

It's time to meet You, your next guilty pleasure binge watch. A thrilling  drama, You is the talk of social media these days thanks to how much the show plays with our own addictions to Instagram and other apps. You stars Penn Badgley (Gossip Girl) as a bookstore manager named Joe, who falls in love with Beck (Elizabeth Lail), a grad student, and cyber-stalks the ever-loving heck out of her. Co-star Shay Mitchel is earning raves for her performance as Peach, Beck's rich-and-horrible bestie, who feels like a female riff on Gossip Girl's Chuck Bass.

Season 2 of You is out, and is already one of the best shows on Netflix right now.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 93%

Stars: Victoria Pedretti, Penn Badgley, Elizabeth Lail

Exec. producers: Greg Berlanti, Sera Gamble, Sarah Schechter, Leslie Morgenstein, Gina Girolamo, Marcos Siega, Silver Tree

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Riverdale - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: The CW)

In a time with too many reboots, you'd be excused from rolling your eyes at the mention of a dark, gritty Archie show. Yet, somehow, Riverdale defied expectations (or succeeded by leaping over a low bar?) and became a cult sensation during its first season. That section of episodes mixed high school drama with a noiry murder mystery (think Veronica Mars with a campy vibe), and then the second season added a cult, the Gargoyle King (we won't spoil that one for you) and a rash of violence tied to a tabletop roleplaying game. What else do you need to hit Play?

Rotten Tomatoes score: 86%

Stars: KJ Apa, Camila Mendes, Lili Reinhart

Creators: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa

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Sex Education

sex education - best shows on netflix

This show is definitely NSFW (Image credit: Sam Taylor/Netflix)

If you ever thought that puberty would become a stale topic for a TV series, you thought wrong. Sex Education, a British Netflix Original series, shakes up the formula with one of TV's most reliable veterans: Gillian Anderson. Yes, that's right, the star of X-Files and Hannibal breathes life into the genre as Dr. Jean F. Milburn, a sex therapist and single mother of Otis (Asa Butterfield), an insanely awkward teen who's having trouble coming to grips with his own sexuality. This is more than just a family sitcom, though, as Otis' classmates — including his best friend Eric (Ncuti Gatwa) and local bully Adam (Connor Swindells) — provide tons of tension and drama. And while Otis is beset by trouble from all corners, he's getting help from the most unlikely of sources, including Maeve, the local bad-girl.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%

Stars: Asa Butterfield, Gillian Anderson, Ncuti Gatwa

Creators: Laurie Nunn

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American Horror Story

American Horror Story - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Michele K. Short/FX)

Black Mirror isn't the only anthology series out here that's gonna scare the heck out of you. Netflix currently streams 8 seasons of American Horror Story, the product of show-runners Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk (Glee, Nip/Tuck), who turn out to have a preternatural knack for tales packed with supernatural scares. Of course, at the core of each season, is a reveal of the terrible things that men and women can do to each other. Asylum, the most critically adored season, stars Jessica Lange, Zachary Quinto and Sarah Paulson, and takes place inside an insane asylum in the 1960s. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 76%

Stars: Connie Britton, Dylan McDermott, Kathy Bates

Creators: Brad Falchuk, Ryan Murphy

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Big Mouth 

Big Mouth - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Growing up isn't just complicated, it's especially messy and filthy once you hit puberty. And while you might say "South Park did it" already, don't sleep on Big Mouth. Born from the mind of comedian Nick Kroll (The League) and his cohorts, this series stands out by actually creating fuller, more fleshed-out characters that audiences that can actually empathise with (unlike Cartman and Randy Marsh). And on top of all the toilet humor there's a surprising amount of discussion of heavy topics, educating audiences on depression and other major issues. Big Mouth's perfect Rotten Tomatoes score is just one of the reasons why it's one of the best shows on Netflix.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 100%

Stars: Nick Kroll, John Mulaney, Gina Rodriguez

Creators: Nick Kroll, Andrew Goldberg, Mark Levin, Jennifer Flackett

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Queer Eye (2018)

Queer Eye (2018) - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Christopher Smith/Netflix)

It's practically too perfect that a makeover show got a makeover, and became one of the best reality programs on TV, but that's where we stand with Queer Eye. And while hosts Bobby Berk (interior design), Jonathan Van Ness (grooming) and Tan France (fashion) all get a lot of credit for helping people around the world (they're in Japan in the latest season), the show's also got two hosts that audiences sometimes joke about, for not really doing that much. Is Antoni really saving someone by showing them how to make avocado toast? And how much do Karamo's talks about society and culture really improve the quality of life? Still, this newly rebooted fab five have taken the show to a whole new level, and given all of us a ton of feels and happy tears along the way.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 91%

Stars: Antoni Porowski, Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Jonathan Van Ness and Tan France

Creators: David Collins

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Russian Doll

russian doll - best shows on netflix

Natasha Lyonne's struggling to figure out her looping experience. (Image credit: Netflix)

Coming in under the radar in Netflix's Feb. 2019 releases, this dark, druggy delight subverts a ton of traditions to positive results. A lot of that comes from audiences coming in hopefully-cold, and getting surprised by the show's premise and inner workings, so let's stay spoiler-free. The first thing you should know is that Russian Doll is the funny and emotional the series that Natasha Lyonne (its star, co-creator, writer, and director) has long since deserved, as she's spent most of her career as a co-star and not a lead. Next up, as Todd VanDerWeff pointed out, Russian Dolls goes beyond having a strong, brash female lead, and places men in supporting roles — that aren't quite fleshed out, but help drive the story — typically made for women.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%

Stars: Natasha Lyonne, Greta Lee, Yul Vázquez

Creators: Leslye Headland, Natasha Lyonne, Amy Poehler

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Love, Death & Robots

love, death & robots - best shows on netflix

Black Mirror, but make it animated (Image credit: Netflix)

What if you took the dystopic futurism of Black Mirror, but made it slightly less depressing and animated it? You'd get David Fincher's new Love, Death & Robots, a new Netflix original anthology series that's comprised of 18 episodes that run about 15 minutes a piece. Sure, there's some brutality, it's not toothless, but it won't leave you looking for a therapist in the same way that Black Mirror did. Also, its animation style manages to pull off detailed CGI, without descending into the uncanny valley.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 79%

Stars: Topher Grace, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Gary Cole

Creator: Tim Miller

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Halt and Catch Fire

Halt and Catch Fire - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Bob Mahoney/AMC)

A fictional version of the dawn of the personal computer era doesn't sound like a must-watch, but Halt and Catch Fire caught on with a small, dedicated audience thanks to fantastic acting and tightly-written dialogue. Sure, it wasn't the big hit that AMC's three other shows (Breaking Bad, Mad Men and The Walking Dead — all of which are also on Netflix), but the series was a hit with critics, taking home the Most Exciting New Series award in 2014 from the Critics' Choice Television Awards, and landing high on many end-of-year lists. Lee Pace and Kerry Bishé also got award nominations for their performances, which helped humanize this digital tale.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%

Stars: Lee Pace, Scoot McNairy, Mackenzie Davis

Creators: Christopher Cantwell, Christopher C. Rogers

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Supergirl - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: The CW)

The cure for Zack Snyder's dour and gritty murderverse of DCEU movies, Supergirl tells the tale of Kara Danvers, a plucky employee of the CatCo media empire. Of course, Kara's got something in common with her cousin Clark Kent, as her real name is Kara Zor-El. The series, currently in its fifth season, is widely liked for its heartfelt nature, terrific writing and how it fits into the overall DC universe. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 86%

Stars: Melissa Benoist, Calista Flockhart, Mehcad Brooks

Creators: Marv Wolfman, Jerry Ordway

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I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson

i think you should leave with time robins - best shows on netflix

This one gets mighty awkward (Image credit: Lara Solanki/Netflix)

Critics are raving about this new sketch comedy series from SNL alum Tim Robinson (Detroiters), which manages to make you cringe in a brand-new way. His characters manage to stretch jokes out far longer than you'd expect, and the show's tone is so over-the-top that you'll find yourself laughing so hard you'll need a chance to pause and breathe. Thankfully, I Think You Should Leave With Tim Robinson episodes run 15 to 20 minutes a pop, giving you a chance to pause between laughs. Also, it's only 6 episodes long, so you'll be done before you know it.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%

Stars: Tim Robinson, Andy Samberg, Ashleigh Nicole Johnson

Creators: Tim Robinson, Zach Kanin

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Grace and Frankie

Grace and Frankie - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Ali Goldstein/Netflix)

An excellent odd-couple comedy, Grace and Frankie gives Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin starring roles with a lot of great one-liners, filling a void left by an industry that often pushes women of a certain age to the background. The series begins with a life-shattering moment as Frankie and Grace (Tomlin and Fonda, respectively) simultaneously discover that their husbands are leaving them. Smartly, the show takes its foot off the pedal after this major plot point, leaving them to stew as natural enemies before they start to slowly become friends.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 89%

Stars: Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen

Creators: Marta Kauffman, Howard J. Morris

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Mindhunter - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Thought we had enough crime shows? Think again. Over two seasons, Mindhunter has brought cinema-quality visuals and strong character development to the genre, and took us back in crime to the 1970's as police began to understand and track serial killers. The series stars Jonathan Groff (Glee) as Holden Ford, a hostage crisis specialist, who's at the center of these new investigations. Its second season continues the story of the first, expanding its universe.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%

Stars: Jonathan Groff, Holt McCallany, Anna Torv

Creator: Joe Penhall

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The Great British Baking Show

The Great British Baking Show - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Competitive reality TV doesn't have to be a backstabbing mess. Sure the genre has spent decades running people through a mill of backstabbing (Survivor) and other ghoulish behavior (Temptation Island) — but The Great British Baking Show (which is called The Great British Bake Off when it originally airs in the U.K.) subverts that with a smile on its face. On this series, contestants have a surprising amount of comradery as they produce plentiful amounts of pastries and cakes. Just think twice before watching when you're hungry, GBBS might send you past dinner straight to dessert. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 89%

Producers: Anna Beattie, Richard McKerrow, Letty Kavanagh, Kieran Smith

Stars: Sue Perkins, Sandi Toksvig, Mel Giedroyc

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Peaky Blinders

Peaky Blinders best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Robert Viglasky/Netflix)

The first five seasons of Peaky Blinders has spanned a decade of crime drama in Birmingham, England. The series, driven by Cillian Murphy (28 Days Later) starring as the upwardly criminal Tommy Shelby, started off slow but currently moves at a breakneck pace. Each season is made up of 6 hour-long episodes, so you could get through all of the show on your next vacation. Most recently, the Peaky Blinders timeline brought its cast of ruffians to the 1929 stock market crash, to show its rippling effects around the world. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 92%

Stars: Cillian Murphy, Tom Harper, Iddo Goldberg

Creators: Steven Knight

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She-Ra and the Princesses of Power

she-ra and the princesses of power best shows on netflix

Retro feels powers, activate! (Image credit: Netflix)

For once, a modernized update isn't a lifeless, gritty reboot, as She-Ra and the Princesses of Power is the best new animated series on Netflix and a ton of fun. Sure, it might start in a dark place — as protagonists Adora and Catra did grow up as orphaned child soldiers — but it doesn't live in that despair. Before you know it, She-Ra and the Princesses embraces everything we love about Steven Universe, from its glowing palette to a strong, winking sense of humor. If show-runner Noelle Stevenson gets the chance to fill She-Ra with the inventiveness she made her name for with the fantasy comic Nimona, this series has a true chance to remake its titular hero for generations to come. 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 96%

Stars: Aimee Carrero, Amanda Michalka, Marcus Scribner

Creator: Noelle Stevenson

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Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

chilling adventures of sabrina - best shows on netflix

Mad Men's Kiernan Shipka is casting a spell on audiences in Sabrina (Image credit: Dean Buscher/Netflix)

What if you took everything people love about the hit show Riverdale — including its beautiful look, campy fun and dark storylines —  but added horror sensibilities and made it even funnier? That's what you get with Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, a new Netflix original that will have viewers forgetting about the sitcom led by Melissa Joan Hart that was rooted in the same characters. Also, this series benefits from an excellent lead in Kiernan Shipka, who's taken everything she learned as Sally Draper and is applying it to a show with much more room to be weird.

After a Sabrina holiday special debuted on Dec. 14, its a second season arrived on April 5. Vulture's Angelica Jade Bastién noted that the sophomore effort "ricochets from near-perfectly pitched dark fantasy to rote considerations of normal life, only striking the right balance when it doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it still has enough magic and wonder to enthrall."

Rotten Tomatoes score: 82%

Stars: Kiernan Shipka, Miranda Otto, Chance Perdomo

Exec producers: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Lee Toland Krieger, Greg Berlanti, Sarah Schechter, Jon Goldwater

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Salt Fat Acid Heat

salt fat acid heat - best shows on netflix

Can you smell was Samin Nosrat is cooking? (Image credit: Netflix)

This four-part series adapts chef Samin Nosrat best-selling book into a joyous adventure breaking down the essential elements of great-tasting food. Not only does the beautifully-shot show encourage audiences to believe in their ability to cook (even if it's not there yet), but it educates audiences on the cultures that spawned these culinary marvels. By the end of the series, you'll not only be starving, but you'll be imbued with a bit of confidence to make the step from the audience to the chopping block. Salt Fat Acid Heat has some influence from Anthony Bourdain's work, but could be the start of the new best cooking show on Netflix.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 100%

Star: Samin Nosrat

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Tuca & Bertie

Tuca and Bertie - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

The latest member of the "cancelled too soon" club, Tuca & Bertie provided an animated take on the complications of adult friendships. Seen by may as a proper successor to Broad City, the show centers around a brash toucan named Tuca (voiced by Tiffany Haddish) and the anxiety-riddled songbird named Bertie (Ali Wong), who meet through living in the same apartment building. The pair proved highly relatable, bringing the experiences that women go through in their personal and professional lives to a wildly drawn world.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%

Stars: Tiffany Haddish, Ali Wong, Steven Yeun

Creators: Lisa Hanawalt

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glow - best shows on netflix

The gals of Glow know how to slam our emotions (Image credit: Erica Parise/Netflix)

Women's wrestling -- heck, all pro wrestling -- has historically been laughed at, and called a side-show. Netflix original Glow looks to flip the script on how this predetermined spectacle is viewed, by showing how a group of misfit actors and wanna-be celebrities (portrayed by Alison Brie, Betty Gilpin, Britney Young and others) went from nobodies to the stars of the hit 1980's program GLOW: Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling. Podcaster and comedian Marc Maron also stars, as aspiring film director Sam Sylvia, who can't stand any of his performers.

Read our full Glow Season 3 review here. Glow was renewed for a fourth and final season.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 93%

Stars: Alison Brie, Marc Maron, Betty Gilpin

Creators: Jenji Kohan, Liz Flahive, Carly Mensch

Watch Now

The Office (U.S.)

The Office - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: NBC)

Every day, somebody's born who hasn't seen The Dundees yet. Whether that's the greatest episode of the American adaptation or not is something we can argue about 'til the beets at Schrute Farms ripen, but it's hard to argue the significance of this series in the cultural landscape. A jumping-off point for a ton of actors — Mindy Kaling, John Krasinski, Craig Robinson and Rashida Jones to name a handful — The Office's simple premise of mismanaged employees at a paper company proved to be an excellent source for laughs. All praise to Steve Carrell, for managing to stem comparisons to Ricky Gervais' David Brent, after early episodes saw Michael Scott adhering too closely to the boss of the original U.K. office.  

Of course, binge The Office here while you can: it's leaving Netflix in 2021, to go to NBCUniversal's Peacock service.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 88%

Stars: Steve Carell, Jenna Fischer, Rainn Wilson, John Krasinski 

Creators: Greg Daniels, Ricky Gervais, Stephen Merchant

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Stranger Things

stranger things - best shows on netflix

Eleven deals with a lot in three seasons (Image credit: Netflix)

While I won't spoil the events of Stranger Things 3, I can say that the more I got spoiled about it, the more I needed to binge watch the show to avoid more details leaking out. Why? In short, a lot happens this season, which breathes life back into the series after a mixed bag of a second season, more than earning its 90% on Rotten Tomatoes

We're eagerly awaiting an announcement of a fourth season. So break out the waffles and sit down for the addictive tales of Dustin, Mike, Lucas, Will, Max and Eleven, who keep finding themselves in the center of supernatural predicaments. Laugh at the dry wit of police chief Jim Hopper, find the joy in Winona Ryder's over-the-top performance and smirk at the show's excellent retro soundtracking choices.

We've been keeping tabs on all Stranger Things 4 rumors, and the latest suggests the season will actually arrive in 2020.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 93%

Stars: Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Millie Bobby Brown

Creator: Matt Duffer, Ross Duffer

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The Good Place

the good place - best shows on netflix

Forget what you thought you knew about the afterlife (Image credit: Colleen Hayes/NBC)

What if you woke up in heaven, but knew you didn't deserve to be there, and had to hide your imperfections? That case of impostor syndrome is at the root of the critically-praised The Good Place, which stars Ted Danson and Kristen Bell, and is the creation of Michael Schur, the writer and producer best known for his work on The Office (US), Parks and Recreation and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. In terms of currently active programming that's still on the service — which is currently leaning more toward its own originals than shows that aired on TV — The Good Place is one of the best shows on Netflix.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%

Stars: Kristen Bell, Ted Danson, William Jackson Harper

Creator: Michael Schur

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Master of None

Master of None - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Netflix/Universal Television )

While Aziz Ansari got famous for being a tonedeaf wanna-be lothario on Parks & Rec, his Netflix original series takes a much more grounded approach at the insanity that is dating in the 2010's. Currently two seasons in, Master of None centers around Dev (Ansari), a good guy who's struggling both as an aspiring actor and a single guy in a world of Tinder, Bumble and texting. While season 1 is a love letter to New York, season 2 sends Dev and his friend Arnold (Eric Wareheim) on an Italian adventure, as Dev learns how to make pasta while trying to get over his ex. A third season has yet to be announced.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 100%

Stars: Aziz Ansari, H. Jon Benjamin, Eric Wareheim

Creators: Aziz Ansari, Alan Yang

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The Crown

the crown best shows on netflix

The new empress of drama (Image credit: Netflix)

Claire Foy and Matt Smith (Doctor Who) have garnered praise from critics and audiences alike for their portrayals of Queen Elizabeth II and Philip the Duke of Edinsburgh. The Crown tells the story of Elizabeth. from her time as Princess Elizabeth and her 1947 wedding, up to the present day. Not only do the two display a fantastic on-screen but they're fleshing out these historical figures with humanity and gravitas, earning them some of the sympathy they never gained in the court of public opinion.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%

Stars: Olivia Colman, Claire Foy, Vanessa Kirby

Exec. producers: Peter Morgan, Andy Harries, Stephen Daldry

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Marvel's Jessica Jones

marvel's jessica jones best shows on netflix

Indestructible but cancelled (Image credit: Myles Aronowitz/Netflix)

Even superheroes can fall for the wrong man. Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter) works as a private eye, but her full-time profession might as well be "alcoholic" after an abusive relationship with a manipulative supervillain known as the Purple Man (David Tennant). When a mysterious murder occurs in Hell's Kitchen, Jessica might be the only one who can get to the bottom of it. Its second season focused on unraveling the mystery of how Ms. Jones got to be so strong. Jessica Jones Season 3 forced Jessica and Trish to work together, and also served as the final chapter of the Netflix and Marvel relationship.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 83%

Stars: Krysten Ritter, Mike Colter, David Tennant

Creator: Melissa Rosenberg

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Marvel's Daredevil

marvel's daredevil best shows netflix

Even a blind-man could tell that Daredevil got great in Season 3 (Image credit: Netflix)

Daredevil represented the dark side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While the Avengers take down supervillains and win glory, it's folks like Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) who fight for the little guy. Lawyer by day and masked crime-fighter Daredevil by night, Murdock takes on corrupt landlords, dirty cops, murderous vigilantes and, of course, a few mystical ninjas for good measure.

While its Daredevil season 3 gained critical praise for fixing the pacing problems that plague Marvel's Netflix shows, a Deadline report on Nov. 29 revealed that Netflix had cancelled the show. While many now think Daredevil and his fellow canceled superheroes (Luke Cage and Iron Fist) will show up on the upcoming streaming service Disney+, TV critic Alan Sepinwall tweeted that "The execs have already said they don't want these shows on the Disney service. And even if they did, the nature of the contracts would make it virtually impossible. They're done."

Rotten Tomatoes score: 92%

Stars: Charlie Cox, Vincent D'Onofrio, Deborah Ann Woll

Exec. Producers: Steven S. DeKnight, Douglas Petrie, Drew Goddard, Marco Ramirez, Jeph Loeb

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Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

crazy ex-girlfriend - best shows on netflix

These tunes will get stuck in your head (Image credit: Greg Gagne/The CW)

Everyone has had a story about an unexpected opportunity for love in his or her life, but not everyone has the presence of mind to sing about it. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend stars Rachel Bloom as Rebecca Nora Bunch: a New York City lawyer who packs up and leaves for California, only to find her first love living nearby. Naturally, the whole cast makes the situation into a musical revue.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 98%

Stars: Rachel Bloom, Santino Fontana, Michael McDonald

Exec. Producers: Aline Brosh McKenna, Rachel Bloom, Marc Webb

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Better Call Saul

better call saul - best shows on netflix

Before Saul ever helped Jesse and Walter (Image credit: Ursula Coyote/Sony Pictures Television/AMC)

A spinoff of Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul casts slick, shady lawyer Saul Goodman (Bob Odenkirk) as the central character. Both a sequel and a prequel to the show that inspired it, Better Call Saul reveals Saul's sordid past as two-bit con man Jimmy McGill and the family drama that led him to pursue ambulance chasing rather than a more noble profession in elder law.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%

Stars: Bob Odenkirk, Michael McKean, Jonathan Banks

Creators: Vince Gilligan, Peter Gould

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Arrested Development

Arrested Development - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Saeed Adyani/Netflix)

We all love to see rich people fall, and Arrested Development scratched this itch well, while showing us how dumb the 1% can be. Of course, you might find a way to sympathise with Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman) and his son George Michael Bluth (Michael Cera), who are trying their best to fix the business. Watch long enough, though, and you might feel more like matriarch Lucile Bluth, who's more detached and laughing at it all.

As adored for its first seasons as it was maligned for its most recent arcs, Arrested Development is one of those great sitcoms that maybe should have stayed dead. Fortunately, you don't need to watch seasons 4 and 5, as Netflix also offers the first 3 seasons (which it didn't create). 

Rotten Tomatoes score: 75%

Stars: Jason Bateman, Michael Cera, Jessica Walter, Jeffrey Tambor

Creators: Mitchell Hurwitz

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BoJack Horseman

bojack horseman - best shows on netflix

This animated series is mightily depressing (Image credit: Netflix)

Rotten Tomatoes score: 93%

Stars: Will Arnett, Aaron Paul, Amy Sedaris

Creator: Raphael Bob-Waksberg

BoJack Horseman is a hilarious and profound meditation on the nature of depression that just happens to be about an anthropomorphic horse. BoJack (Will Arnett) is a washed-up Hollywood TV star with plenty of money but no real goals or joy left in his life. As his oddball friends urge him on, he realizes that failure doesn't define him, but neither does triumph make him whole. BoJack Horseman Season 6 recently came out.

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Portlandia - best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Danielle Mathias/IFC)

If you don't know where "the spirit of the 90's is alive," then you should take a detour to Portlandia. In this sketch-comedy series, SNL alum Fred Armisen and Sleater-Kinney's Carrie Brownstein spent 8 years poking fun at the culture of Portland, Ore, where eccentricity gets pushed beyond all reasonable boundaries. The pair don all kinds of wigs and bald caps as they take on a variety of roles, as well as accents and bizarre affectations.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 94%

Stars: Fred Armisen, Carrie Brownstein, Chloë Sevigny

Creators: Fred Armisen, Carrie Brownstein, Jonathan Krisel

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Orange is the New Black

orange is the new black best shows on netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling) realizes she can't escape the mistakes of her past when she winds up in a minimum-security women's prison on a drug smuggling charge. Granted, it's not all bad, as she befriends the quirky inmates and reflects on the bizarre backstory that brought her there. Both funny and insightful, Orange is the New Black is one of the most popular Netflix original series.

Its seventh and final season arrived on July 26 to mightily positive responses.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%

Stars: Taylor Schilling, Jason Biggs, Kate Mulgrew

Creator: Jenji Kohan

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The Fosters

the fosters best shows on netflix

A truly modern family drama (Image credit: Tony Rivetti/Freeform)

In this ABC Family/Freeform drama. Callie and her brother Jude are welcomed into the home of the Foster family after spending much of their lives in foster homes. The rest of the family includes their new parents — Stef and Lena — and a mix of diverse children, both biological and adopted, in this blended-family series geared toward teens. The Fosters earned critical acclaim and two GLAAD Media Awards for its portrayal of LGBT topics and themes.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 97%

Stars: Teri Polo, Sherri Saum, David Lambert

Creators: Bradley Bredeweg, Peter Paige

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House of Cards (U.S.)

house of cards best shows on netflix

Frankly, this series didn't hurt without Kevin Spacey (Image credit: Nathaniel E. Bell/Netflix)

A remake of the popular UK series of the same name, House of Cards is all about the inner workings of federal politics and just how dirty and deceitful they can get. Kevin Spacey stars as Frank Underwood: an amoral American congressman who will do absolutely anything to gain political power. As the show progresses, Frank becomes more influential and more unhinged. A new trailer for the show's final season suggests Robin Wright's Claire Underwood will be taking control of the executive branch, as she's sitting behind the desk in the oval office, before the words "Hail to the Chief" appear on screen. Kevin Spacey, who was fired following sexual assault allegations, is nowhere to be seen.

The House of Cards reviews for the 6th and final season say the series isn't hurting without Spacey in the show.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 78%

Stars: Kevin Spacey, Robin Wright, Sebastian Arcelus

Creator: Beau Willimon

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Black Mirror

black mirror best shows on netflix

The best dystopic drama (Image credit: Netflix)

If you were concerned about technology being a detriment to privacy, sanity and human relationships, then the sci-fi thriller series Black Mirror will only serve to confirm your worst fears. While its first episode, the sexually explicit "The National Anthem" only needs the present day's social networks to upend the United Kingdom, later episodes — such as "Fifty Million Merits" and the Jon Hamm-starring "White Christmas" — predict how future advances in in-app purchases, reality TV and privacy filters will stunt our future. The series won two Primetime Emmy awards in 2017 for its San Junipero episode, and "USS Callister," the first episode of its fourth season, proves that the show hasn't run out of insane mind-bending ideas.

Its fifth season, which ran a mere three episodes, hit Netflix on June 5 and proved to be a mixed bag. Tom's Guide's Monica Chin critiqued these episodes for talking down to her generation.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 83%

Stars: Bryce Dallas Howard, Alice Eve, Michael Kelly

Creator: Charlie Brooker

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sherlock best shows on netflix

It's not "Elementary" — but it's arguably better (Image credit: Robert Viglasky/Harstwood Films for Masterpiece)

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's classic detective comes to life for the 21st century in Sherlock. When Dr. John Watson (Martin Freeman) returns from a tour of duty in Afghanistan, he takes a room with the brilliant but antisocial Sherlock Holmes (Benedict Cumberbatch). Together, the two must solve bizarre, complicated murder mysteries, protect state secrets and even undermine a criminal empire.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 78%

Stars: Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Rupert Graves

Creators: Mark Gatiss, Steven Moffat

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Parks and Recreation

parks and recreation - best shows on netflix

Leslie Knope cares a lot. It's kinda her thing. (Image credit: Colleen Hayes/NBC)

Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) is the boss you wish you had. Perpetually chipper and driven, even in the face of her supremely apathetic co-workers, Leslie's fondest wish in life is to keep the parks in suburban Pawnee, Indiana, running in ship shape. Parks and Recreation takes aim at government bureaucracy, but also a fun, earnest side about how local government can be a positive force.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 92%

Stars: Amy Poehler, Rashida Jones, Aziz Ansari

Creators: Greg Daniels, Michael Schur

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Breaking Bad

breaking bad best shows on netflix

The most consistently strong action-drama of its age. (Image credit: Ursula Coyote/AMC)

One of the most intense and ambitious shows of the last decade, Breaking Bad is a story about disease and drugs, family and friendship, profit and power, and much, much more. High school chemistry teacher Walter White (Bryan Cranston) needs money for his cancer treatment, and realizes he can put his scientific know-how to good use: making methamphetamine and starting an illicit empire.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 96%

Stars: Bryan Cranston, Anna Gunn, Aaron Paul

Creator: Vince Gilligan

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Mad Men

mad men best shows on netflix

Booze-soaked meditations life in the 1960s. (Image credit: Frank Ockenfels/AMC)

While day-drinking lothario Don Draper may think that the Sterling Cooper ad agency revolves around him, Mad Men is more than just its lead. The show also tells the tales of Peggy Olson and Joan Holloway (a creative and an office manager, respectively) who are fighting to climb the ladder of an industry run by men. And while we only saw Don's daughter Sally (Kiernan Shipka) sporadically in the first three seasons, her dramatic arc as a child seeing the worst of her parents, turns her into a regular for the rest of the series.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 94%

Stars: Jon Hamm, Elisabeth Moss, Vincent Kartheiser

Creator: Matthew Weiner

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skins best shows on netflix

These kids get straight A's in drama. (Image credit: E4)

If you're looking for another great teen drama, check out Skins, a hit series from across the pond. The show's early seasons -- which features Nicholas Hoult (X-Men: First Class), Dev Patel (Slumdog Millionaire) and Hannah Murray (Game of Thrones) -- shocked many, by showing risque view of youth culture that many fear. The show depicts adolescence as a world where parents are absentees, teachers are having affairs with students and drugs are easily accessible. Rather than rely on sensationalism, though, the show dealt with these topics with respect and fleshed out its characters and their complex personalities.

Stars: Joseph Dempsie, April Pearson

Creators: Jamie Brittain, Bryan Elsley

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The IT Crowd

the it crowd best shows on netflix

You don't want to ask for their help. Trust me. (Image credit: Channel 4 UK)

"Have you tried turning it off and turning it back on again?" If you've ever tried to explain a simple piece of technology to someone who just doesn't get it, you know how Roy Trenneman (Chris O’Dowd) and Maurice Moss (Richard Ayoade) feel. On The IT Crowd the two best friends work in the IT department of a big company under their clueless boss, Jen Barber (Katherine Parkinson), with hilarious results.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 86%

Stars: Chris O'Dowd, Richard Ayoade, Katherine Parkinson

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supernatural - best shows on netflix

An almost-neverending story. (Image credit: Sergei Bachlakov/The CW)

Now the longest-running American fantasy series of all time, Supernatural is the story of Sam and Dean Winchester. This pair of brothers fights the paranormal, and battles both heaven and hell for a living. There's an argument to be made that their '67 Chevy Impala is the true star of the show, but it's actors are Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki, who play Dean and Sam Winchester, respectively.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 88%

Stars: Jared Padalecki, Jensen Ackles, Jeffrey Dean Morgan

Creator: Eric Kripke

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The West Wing

the west wing - best shows on netflix

An idealized version of an American presidency. (Image credit: Getty)

Being the president of the United States is arguably the toughest job in the world, unless you’ve got some good friends. In The West Wing, President Josiah Bartlett (Martin Sheen) and his affable senior staff confront problems both great and small, which concern both the American public and their own lives. The show's a bit more dramatic than real politics, but it's also more uplifting.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 75%

Stars: Martin Sheen, John Spencer, Steve Ryan

Creator: Aaron Sorkin

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Twin Peaks

twin peaks - best shows on netflix

Agent Cooper needs his coffee, now. (Image credit: Mark Seliger/Capital Cities/ABC)

Who killed Laura Palmer? This mystery lies at the heart of Twin Peaks, a small-town drama from visionary filmmaker David Lynch. Kyle MacLachlan plays FBI investigator Dale Cooper as he explores the quiet town of Twin Peaks, looking for clues to a brutal murder of a prominent figure in the community. The show is clever and eerie, but features the hallmark Lynch humor and surrealism.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 89%

Stars: Kyle MacLachlan, Joan Chen, Ray Wise, Dana Ashbrook, Sherilyn Fenn

Creators: David Lynch, Mark Frost

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Star Trek

star trek best shows on netflix

Stream me up, Scotty. (Image credit: Copyright Paramount/Everett Collection)

Join Capt. James T. Kirk (William Shatner) and the crew of the starship Enterprise as they boldly go where no man has gone before. Star Trek is a groundbreaking science-fiction adventure that had profound things to say about such concepts as exploration, war, racism and cultural differences. Some of the special effects are dated, but the stories and characters feel as fresh as ever.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 80%

Stars: William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, Celia Lovsky

Creator: Gene Roddenberry

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The Twilight Zone

the twilight zone original series - best shows on netflix

A seriously influential series. (Image credit: CBS)

If you love Black Mirror, then you should take a look at the series inspired it. Yes, Netflix is streaming The Twilight Zone, the original TV series with seriously thrilling stories, introduced by the stern Rod Serling. Must-see episodes include the shocking and tragic "Eye of The Beholder," as well as "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" and "Time Enough at Last," which have been referenced in popular culture for decades.

Rotten Tomatoes score: 80%

Stars: Rod Serling, John Anderson

Exec. Producer: Rod Serling

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