It has been almost 15 years already that Netflix became a streaming platform, and since 2013 it has been putting out some amazing original shows you can watch on any of the best websites to watch movies and TV shows.
Currently, a lot of its catalog has been taken over by these original productions, which to their credit are indeed mostly great. You can also find some of the classics that will never die out (Friends, anyone?), but since there are just so many different options it can be somewhat hard to find what to binge-watch next.
There’s no definite answer as to what are the best shows on Netflix (many of which you can even watch on the best IPTV options) since each person has their own particular tastes. To make an approximation, we have selected some series that have received wide critic and public acclaim, as well as some of our personal tastes.
It is worth noting that this list does not follow any particular order, either ratings or preferences. So, just read more down below to learn which ones are the best alternatives for you to binge-watch next.
Tip: if you want to do something else than watching TV shows, it may be worth checking out which ones are the best free music download websites, the most popular artists on Spotify, and learn how to listen to music offline for free!
1. Stranger Things
We can’t deny that Stranger things is the biggest trend among the best shows on Netflix. Everyone is always waiting at the edge of their seats for the next season and, as soon as it is over, everyone is talking about it for days.
There’s a good reason for that, of course, since the show comes with a lot of references to the 1980s and a large appeal is trying to find them hidden in the episodes.
In its third season, the piece is set in a small American city where some unethical experiments revealed the existence of a super-powered girl, as well as a parallel dimension to ours, called the Upside Down. The girl, Eleven, is a fundamental part of the understanding of the mysteries of this other world and to protect our dimension from the creatures in the Upside Down.
2. Orange is the New Black
With seven well-renowned seasons, Orange is the New Black is one of the first of the largest successes in the original shows section of Netflix. Based upon a book by the same name, it follows the life in prison of a white middle-class woman for a white-collar crime she had committed years ago.
The series is set during her sentence, in which the protagonist Piper (the woman) is faced with and is forced to live in a reality completely different to the one she’d grown accustomed to.
The first show of many that came from a partnership between Marvel and Netflix, Daredevil has three amazing seasons. In them, the series counts with several well-choreographed fight scenes, in particular those in narrow hallways. We also will follow a very compelling story that can surprise you at any moment!
When maskless, the blind lawyer Matt Murdock tries to protect less-fortunate citizens in his New York neighborhood (Hell’s Kitchen) against those who are richer. At night he dons his mask to search for justice and oftentimes revenge through less conventional means.
Other than the many intrigues and the several fight scenes, this show also explores themes such as duality, identity sense, and even how far can super-heroes go when trying to protect others from evil.
We have to also bring attention to Vincent D’Onofrio in the role of the villain Wilson Fisk, also known as Kingpin.
4. Jessica Jones
The second partnership between Marvel and Netflix has also been extremely well-received, even though it focuses on the previously-mostly-unknown hero Jessica Jones.
The super-powered private detective relives her past traumas when Kilgrave, a villain with the power of convincing anyone to do whatever he wants, returns. He had previously kept her hostage under his control for years before she broke free.
Unlike on Daredevil, Jessica Jones has fewer action scenes and a larger focus on investigation and how the characters develop when facing the threats.
5. Our Planet
Completely different from anything we’ve shown so far among the best shows on Netflix, Our Planet is one of the best Netflix documentaries that follows a TV show format. In it, we see the relationship that we, humans, have with the different environments found on Planet Earth.
Forests, mountains, frozen areas, and many more different habitats are shown in each episode, which also portrays our destructive impact on each one. With stunning sceneries, Our Planet explains all the ways we’re negatively impacting our planet, even if we’re unaware of it.
This is an excellent option to better understand how climate change works and how it is actually affecting us.
6. Killer Ratings
Another documentary web series, Killer Ratings is one of Brazilian origin, and it portrays the impressive and absurd case of Wallace Souza. Host of a sensationalist police show on a Brazilian TV channel, his popularity was so high that he easily entered politics as a state congressman for 10 years.
Everything he showed, however, wasn’t entirely true. Suspecting how quick the host was in figuring out the crimes even before the police did, an investigation was conducted and a stunning truth came to light: Wallace himself was directly connected to the crimes he denounced.
To better understand how he got where he did, only to fall from his grace, it is recommended that you watch Killer Ratings.
Another option of Brazilian origin, but now in the fiction department, 3% has been very well critically received all around the world. The series brings a futuristic and dystopic society that is divided into two territories: the Inland, riddled with misery and lack of resources, and Offshore, highly-evolved and full of fine technology.
Every year, people who reach the age of 20 have the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of going through a rigorous selection to go from Inland to Offshore. Only 3% can complete the Process. The series follows a group of these people, exploring their motivations and the secrets behind this meritocratic society.
8. The Good Place
If documentaries or series with a strong social criticism aren’t exactly what you’re looking for, maybe The Good Place is the perfect option for you! The series starts off when the protagonist, an egocentric person, dies and goes to heaven by mistake.
The show talks about some philosophical questions, such as the duality of good and evil, that are well mixed in with the hilarious and nonsensical situations that the protagonist has to face in this “Good Place”. It is worth noting, however, that even with all its levity, not everything is what it seems in The Good Place!
9. Sex Education
At first sight, Sex Education might seem like a current-day American Pie. However, Sex Education, which certainly is one of the best shows on one of the best video streaming services, Netflix, goes much beyond the 5th-grade level jokes for which the movies are most known.
This series follows the student life of a teenager that, unlike most of his classmates, isn’t really keen on starting his sex life. And the reason for that is that his mother is a sex therapist and can’t wait to talk to her son about it!
On the other hand, he ends up giving a lot of advice to his classmates from the knowledge he has acquired – even if he desn’t want to – by hearing his mother’s sessions.
Back to the documentary shows, Explained is not gutwrenching like Killer Ratings and Our Planet are. Unlike them, the episodes are set as chat and bring up a lot of different current themes.
In one of them, you can learn more about feminism, for example, and in another, you can find out just how K-Pop became so popular all around the world. It is ideal to better understand things that are becoming more common but that we still don’t know much about.
Starring Wagner Moura, this series draws inspiration from the life of one of the biggest drug dealers in the world, Pablo Escobar. The series shows just how the Medelín Cartel managed to smuggle drugs all the way to the USA and to Europe, which is what interested the most powerful country in the world.
In response, two American special agents are sent to capture and kill him. And so, a cat and mice game is established between the characters. The show has three seasons and other spin-off shows.
12. Black Lightning
Now going to the DC side of the force, Black Lightning brings the veteran hero from Superman’s universe. An accomplished public school director, the hero who chose to retire his cape and live as a regular person will need to don his uniform once again to rescue his daughters from a kidnapper.
Obviously, the brief return to action as a hero doesn’t end there. With an aggravating factor: how can you be a hero without exposing your family to danger?
13. Star Trek: Discovery
For those who were missing a science fiction TV show, we have Star Trek: Discovery. Other than being a part of the extremely popular franchise, this series is another that can easily be considered to be one of the best shows on Netflix, which is also one of the best movie streaming apps on iPhone!
That is because the spaceship adventures and the new set of characters has been extremely liked by fans. Showing events that took place 10 years before the original show, Discovery brings back what made this franchise so popular: space exploration and contact with new planets and civilizations.
14. Money Heist
Another series that’s in everyone’s minds and has gone viral is Money Heist (La Casa de Papel). The Spanish show follows the story of the mysterious The Professor, who recruits eight people with distinct skills who have nothing to lose to take part in the greatest heist of the century: to break into the Spanish Treasury and steal over 2 billion euro.
Each character goes by the name of a world capital as their codename, and the first season follows the days in which they’re stuck in the Treasury with over sixty hostages. Will their mission be successful?
15. The Crown
If heists aren’t really your thing and you’re more into shows filled with schemes and conspiracy networks, The Crown could be the most well-suited option for you.
Following the coronation of the young Queen Elizabeth II, the show follows the oldest yet Queen of England, showing the most important events that happened since 1947, including her marriage, until the current days.
DC won’t leave Marvel alone, and all Netflix users get is benefits from the rivalry between the two. Titans is the most recent show to compete with Marvel’s productions. A reimagination of the group Teen Titans, for the first time they are portrayed in a live-action!
Robin, Beast Boy, Starfire, and Raven are the main characters in the first season, and the episodes show the origins of each one of them, showing how the team of young heroes got together.
17. When They See Us
By far and large, When They See Us is the most gut-wrenching of the best shows on Netflix, which is one of the best movie download apps, and it has real facts as a basis. The episodes in the series follow the story of five black teenagers who were unfairly accused of raping and assaulting a young woman in Central Park.
The series shows just how ingrained racism is in our society, and how the thirst for revenge can end up ruining the lives of innocents. When They See Us also shows how public opinion and the media work as an alternative jury, condemning even without any evidence.
18. Better Call Saul
A spin-off from the highly successful TV show Breaking Bad, Better Call Saul tells the story of the lawyer James Morgan McGill many years before he was known as Saul Goodman. In this spin-off, you’ll learn his entire trajectory and the events that turned him into the character we all know from the main show.
Even though it is only a spin-off, Better Call Saul has been praised both by critics and by the public, other than being an amazing way of delving deeper into Breaking Bad’s universe.
19. House of Cards
Showcasing the backstage of powerful people, House of Cards is a drama that follows the career of Francis Underwood, an ambitious (and unscrupulous) politician who aims for a high place in the American capital’s politics.
During all its six seasons, the series portrays the consequences of the relentless search for power and all the scheming, setting people up, and traps to reach the desired power. Amazing for anyone who likes more complex plots that aren’t quite obvious.
20. Black Mirror
To finish off our list of the best shows on Netflix we have Black Mirror, a quite impactful series, that’s heavy in many aspects. Even sho, each new season is always accompanied by comments, debates, and attempts at guessing which macabre paths using technology can follow.
Each episode is a different story and, with very few exceptions, each episode is standalone. What connects them is the themes: how the bad use of current technologies can end up making us less human.
Which ones are the best shows on Netflix in your opinion?
Let us know in the comments which ones are your favorites and if you agree or disagree with our list. Don’t forget to also check out the video websites like YouTube, the apps to watch anime, and the live TV apps for Android!