With a lot of us still in lockdown, I wanted to update this list of what I think are the best series on Netflix. I will keep my old suggestions since I still recommend them, but I have watched some new series since then that I would recommend as well. I sorted my suggestions by genre, and most shows have several genres so I listed them as well.
Atypical: There are 3 seasons of Atypical on Netflix, and the series is about Sam Gardner who has autism and is a senior in high school. The series follows him as he begins dating and learns to become more independent.
Other genre: Comedy
Bridgerton: Bridgerton is set in Regency-era England when the eldest Bridgerton daughter Daphne enters society with the Queen’s favor. She meets Simon, the Duke of Hastings, but he no intentions of marrying. However, the anonymous and scandalous newsletter columnist Lady Whistledown stirs things up when she begins to reveal high society’s secrets.
Other genre: Romance
Maniac: Owen, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia and recently lost his job, and Annie, who is living in the past and fixated on the broken relationship with her sister, are two complete strangers who are drawn to a drug trial that is supposed to solve all their problems. However, things do no go as planned. Maniac is a limited series with only 1 season available.
Other genres: Comedy and Sci-Fi
Once Upon A Time: This series is about a woman named Emma Swan whose son she gave up shows up and is convinced she is the daughter of Snow White and Prince Charming. He believes the Evil Queen cast a spell on the fairytale characters that brought them to Storybrooke, Maine. After Emma takes Henry home to Storybrooke, she decides to stay to keep an eye on him and she soon discovers he may be right. I have finished season 6, and there are 7 seasons available on Netflix. Each season introduces new characters and villains like Elsa and Anna, the Wicked Witch, Cruella de Vil, and Merida.
Other genres: Fantasy, Mystery, and Adventure
The Queen’s Gambit: The Queen’s Gambit is a 7 episode mini-series about Beth Harmon who was orphaned at 9-years-old and quickly masters the game of cheese. She struggles with drug and alcohol dependency on her journey to become the world’s greatest chess player.
Riverdale: Archie Andrews and his friends Betty, Veronica, and Jughead investigate the murder of their high school classmate Jason Blossom. In the second season, they uncover the shooter the Black Hood, and the third season is about a new threat of the Gargoyle King. The fourth season is about their senior year, and the fifth season is ongoing.
Other genre: Mystery
Sex Education: This series is about a teenage boy named Otis whose mother is a sex therapist mother, and he teams up with his classmate Maeve to set up an underground sex therapy clinic at school. There are currently 2 seasons of Sex Education.
Other genre: Comedy
Shadowhunters: The Mortal Instruments: On her 18th birthday Clary discovers she is a Shadowhunter who hunts demons. When her mom is kidnapped, she begins working with the other shadowhunters, and with the help of her best friend she uncovers the answers to find her mother. I am currently on season 3 and there are 4 seasons available.
Other genres: Fantasy, Supernatural, and Romance
13 Reasons Why: Clay receives a box of tapes made by his classmate Hannah who committed suicide. The tapes explain the 13 reasons why she killed herself, and Clay needs to listen to them to find why he is on one of the tapes. The second season focuses on the court case between Hannah’s parents and the school for failing to protect Hannah and preventing her suicide, and the third season follows the disappearance of Bryce. The fourth and final season is about the last semester of high school and graduation. There is also Beyond the Reasons for each season where the cast, producers, and mental health professionals discuss the difficult issues and themes in the series.
Other genre: Mystery
Black Mirror: Each episode is a standalone story that is set in the near future and shows the darker side of technology. However, there are a few feel-good episodes. There are 5 seasons of Black Mirror available as well as Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, which is a choose your own adventure film about a programmer who is adapting a fantasy novel into a video game.
Other genres: Drama and Dystopian
Dark: When 2 boys go missing, the double lives and fractured relationships of 4 families are exposed. There are also supernatural elements that tie back to the same town in 1986. There are 3 seasons available, and the series is in German, but there is an option for sub and dub.
Other genres: Thriller and Drama
The Rain: A rain-carried virus wipes out most of Scandinavia, and 6 years later 2 siblings emerge from their bunker. They then join a group of survivors to search for signs of life. There are currently 3 seasons, and it is in Danish, but there are options for sub and dub.
Other genres: Post-apocalyptic and Drama
Stranger Things: This series is set in the 80s when a young boy goes missing and his mom, sheriff, and friends look for answers and uncover secret government experiments and supernatural forces. The second and third seasons are a continuation of the first, but now there are new and bigger threats. There is also Beyond Stranger Things where the cast and crew discuss the episodes of the second season.
Other genres: Supernatural and Horror
The Umbrella Academy: Seven children with superpowers were adopted by billionaire Sir Reginald Hargreeves to help save the world. Over time, the members of The Umbrella Academy disbanded, but following the death of their father, the six surviving members reunite. There are currently two seasons of The Umbrella Academy.
Other genres: Dark Comedy, Drama, and Action
The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina: Sabrina, who is a half-witch half-mortal, is torn between the two worlds. While she decides if she wants to be part of the Church of Night or remain in the mortal world, she has to fight evil forces including demons and other witches. There are currently 4 seasons available.
Other genres: Drama, Supernatural, and Horror
The Haunting of Hill House: This series follows a fractured family who confronts the haunting memories of their old home, Hill House, and the terrifying events that drove them from it. There is also a season of The Haunting of Bly Manor where an American nanny is hired to care for two children at Bly Manor after their au pair’s tragic death.
Other genres: Drama, Supernatural and Horror
Locke and Key: After their father is murdered, the three Locke siblings and their mother move to their ancestral estate, Keyhouse, which is full of magical keys that unlock powers and secrets. There is currently 1 season.
Other genres: Drama and Fantasy
A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Baudelaire orphans investigate the mysterious death of their parents as they outsmart Olaf who will do whatever it takes to get his hands on their inheritance. This series is based on the books, and there are 3 seasons as of now.
Other genres: Dark Comedy, Drama, and Adventure
Unsolved Mysteries: Unsolved Mysteries is a true-crime documentary series that is about disappearances, horrific deaths, and paranormal encounters that are unsolved. There are currently 2 seasons with 12 episodes total.
You: You follows a dangerously charming and intensely obsessive man who will go to extreme measures to insert himself into the lives of those he is transfixed by. There are 2 seasons of You with a third season expected to be released this year.
Other genre: Drama
The Circle: In this reality series, people live alone in apartments and compete for $100,000 by communicating solely through the social media platform – The Circle. There is only 1 season as of now.
Instant Hotel: Instant Hotel is a reality series where Australian homeowners compete for the title of the best Instant Hotel by staying at each other’s rentals and rating their experiences. There are currently 2 seasons.
Glow Up: In Glow Up, 10 aspiring makeup artists from the UK compete to win a contract to work with leading makeup artists. There is 1 season available.
Magic for Humans: In Magic for Humans, Justin Williams performs tricks and illusions for real people on the street without any camera tricks. There are 3 seasons available.
Other genre: Comedy
Nailed It!: This series is a baking competition where amateur bakers with a bad track record try to recreate edible masterpieces. The baker who comes the closest wins $10,000. There are 4 seasons available to watch, and there are also 2 seasons of Nailed It! Holiday! where the desserts are holiday-themed.
Other genre: Comedy
Queer Eye: In Queer Eye each member of the Fab 5 has their own specialty: Tan (fashion), Jonathan (grooming), Antoni (food and wine), Bobby (design), and Karamo (culture). Together they transform people on the inside and out so they can be the best version of themselves. There are 5 seasons available as well as 4 episodes of Queer Eye: We’re in Japan!
RuPaul’s Drag Race: 12 drag queens compete in weekly challenges to become America’s Next Drag Superstar and win $100,000. There are 12 seasons available as well as season 4 and 5 of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars, a season of RuPaul’s Secret Celebrity Drag Race, and an episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race Holi-Slay Spectacular.
Selling Sunset: In Selling Sunset, real estate agents at The Oppenheim Group sell high-end properties to affluent buyers in Los Angeles. When a new agent joins the team, drama ramps up. There are 3 seasons available.
Zumbo’s Just Desserts: This show is a more serious baking competition where 12 chefs compete to win $100,000 and to do so they must complete intricate and delicious challenges. There are 2 seasons.
What are your favorite Netflix series?