By now we’ve pretty much all figured out that Netflix is the place to go for great TV shows. Orange is the New Black, Stranger Things, and House of Cards might get more media attention, but there are a few under-the-radar that you shouldn’t miss out on. From comedies to comics, Netflix offers content for a variety of tastes.
Grace and Frankie
My mom refers to Grace and Frankie as “the old people show” and doesn’t understand how it appeals to twentysomethings. Despite this show’s cast being primarily septuagenarians, the themes are generation-less. While Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin are the leads of the show, supporting actresses Brooklyn Decker and June Diane Raphael are dealing with common millennial problems like new motherhood, dating, and adulting. Perhaps the most moving part of the show is the love between Sol and Robert, Grace and Frankie’s ex-husbands, who come out as gay in the first episode of the series. The show addresses homosexuality with sincerity and explores the confusion these older gentleman feel as they navigate their new lives. The show is lighthearted and incredibly clever.
Master of None
If you only watch one Netflix original series, make it Master of None. Aziz Ansari (you’re probably most familiar with him from his role as Tom Haverford on Parks and Rec) manages to bring that Tommy charm to a role that is a fictionalized version of himself. Master of None explores dating, our relationships with our parents, racism, and figuring out what we actually want to do with our lives. Each episode makes you feel, think, and laugh. With season two just released, make sure to check it out.
Santa Clarita Diet
Drew Barrymore as a realtor turned flesh-eating zombie? It’s something worth seeing. The show is fairly gory, but the blood and guts are overshadowed by delightful humor. Some critics weren’t overly impressed with the show, but I think it’s a great show to mindlessly enjoy for a few laughs. My favorite part is the dialogue between Drew Barrymore’s character and her onscreen husband, Timothy Olyphant. Their exchanges are comical and reminiscent of couples who try really hard to communicate effectively even when they want to throttle the other person. The shows only flaw? Nathan Fillion isn’t featured nearly enough!
Marvel’s Defenders Series
Technically, Marvel’s Daredevil Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist are all their own series but take place in the same universe. There’s a lot of crossover between shows and eventually all four members will assemble this summer when Netflix releases The Defenders movie. Think of The Defenders like the junior varsity team to The Avengers varsity-level world saving. If you can stomach some gore and are a fan of a good superhero show, this is great series to binge that will last you awhile. Doctor Who fans may be particularly interested as David Tennant plays the villain in Jessica Jones.
I will always have a soft spot in my heart for Eric McCormack and can’t wait for his return as Will on Will & Grace. However, the Travelers’ side of McCormack is much more macho and sexy than high-strung Will. The premise of Travelers is that people from the future are coming back to the present day in order to prevent catastrophic events that would change the world we know today. The way time traveling works in this series is different than we normally see and manages to give it an interesting spin. The dynamics of the travelers with each other and the people they meet on the journey gives it an extra edge. You’ll be white knuckling your way to the season finale.
The next time you feel a Netflix binge coming on, check out one of these shows and finally see what you’ve been missing out on!
Sarah Michelle Walsh is writer and blogger focused on living well. Sarah—along with her fiancé and their four furbabies—focuses on finding simple pleasures to make every day a little more special. She considers herself equal parts feminist and princess and often dreams about running off to the French countryside. To learn more about her approach to living well, visit www.sarahmichellewalsh.com.