With midterms and Fall Break shortly approaching, it’s important to find a Netflix series to binge watch. You have to avoid your distractions somehow, right? Have no fear, this list is for you. Being the procrastinator that I was born to be, I decided to be the guinea pig and watch a whole lot of Netflix original series so you didn’t have to. BINGE AWAY!
Narcos tells the story of notorious drug kingpin, Pablo Escobar. Escobar, also known as “The King of Cocaine,” was the wealthiest criminal in history, with an estimated known net worth of $30 billion by the early 90’s. The show focuses on DEA influences in Columbia, Escobar’s families’ struggles throughout his tirade, and Escobar’s interactions with other drug lords throughout his heyday.
Jam packed with sex, gore, and violence, Narcos will definitely peak your interest from the start. Since the vast majority of the show is in Spanish, it’s important to read the captions and keep up. The real DEA agents, Murphy and Peña, who were the lead investigators in Escobar’s case, actually helped writers with the historical accuracy on the show. Escobar’s own son, Sebastián Marroquín, slams Narcos, calling a lot of the storyline inaccurate. Although the creative team might have taken some liberties with historical accuracy, it’s uncannily watchable.
The show was nominated for two Golden Globe awards. Season one & two (20 episodes in all) are now streaming. Since season two was just released, season three has not begun filming as of yet.
Sense8 is a sci-fi drama revolving around eight strangers from around the globe who find themselves connected by a violent vision and linked thoughts and actions. These eight people begin to experience what they assume are hallucinations — but are actually glimpses into each other’s lives. As they pursue answers as to why this is happening to them, a mysterious organization is hunting them down, intent on destroying them.
If you’re into mystery and sci-fi suspense, then Sense8 was made for you. Andy and Lana Wachowski, the directors of Sense8, made their breakthrough debut while directing The Matrix (1999). They also directed Speed Racer (2008), Cloud Atlas (2012), and Jupiter Ascending (2015). The second season is said to be filming in sixteen cities across the globe.
The show has won the GLAAD media award and received a Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music. The music throughout the series is pretty remarakble. Season one (12 episodes) is already streaming, while season two just finished wrapping up. Sense8 will return for a special episode this Christmas while the rest of the installments for season two are expected to air during the early parts of 2017.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is, in a nutshell, oddly hilarious, quirky, and unique. Of course any show created by Tina Fey is destined to be a hit. The show centers around Kimmy Schmidt, played by Ellie Kemper, who after being rescued from a doomsday cult starts fresh in New York city. Since being stuck in the cult for fifteen years, Kimmy adjusts to real life in her own way.
Kimmy Schmidt is the perfect show to come home to on a miserable, rainy day. Her positive attitude will perk you right back up. While the first six episodes of the series were originally edited with the thinking that they would air on NBC, the creators were allowed to reedit the episodes once Netflix purchased the series. Production for season three was actually put on hold because of Ellie Kemper’s pregnancy and Tina Fey has been working on adapting Mean Girls into a musical.
As of yet, the show has been nominated for ten Primetime Emmy Awards. Season one and two are now streaming, while season 3 is now in production.
Orange is the New Black (OITNB)
If you don’t know about this show then it’s time to climb out from under of your rock, Patrick. OITNB is based on Piper Kerman’s memoir, Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison (2010), about her experiences at a minimum-security federal prison after being sentenced to fifteen months after being convicted of a decade-old crime of transporting money to her drug-dealing girlfriend. The show grows into developing story lines for the other criminals that Piper gets involved with, the good and the bad. In the end, everyone has a story and we all want to know about it.
There’s plenty of drama to get you feeling better about your own daily struggles. To the prison drug wars, love sagas, untimely (and not always unfortunate) deaths, there’s always something to keep you captivated.
OITNB quickly became Netflix’s most-watched original series. It is very easy to binge watch. With a 96% on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s safe to say that OITNB will be Netflix’s longest running series. With season 1-4 (52 episodes) already streaming, season five is expected to premiere in June 2017.
House of Cards
House of Cards is the story of Frank Underwood, played by Kevin Spacey, who, after being passed over for appointment as Secretary of State, initiates an elaborate plan to get himself into a position of greater power. Aided by his wife, Claire Underwood, played Robin Wright, the pair manipulate all of Washington D.C.
If you love manipulation and watching power hungry individuals duke it out, this one’s for you. Kevin Spacey does an incredible job single-handedly placing everyone under his wing. It’s scary realistic actually…
House of Cards put Netflix on the map for its whopping 33 Primetime Emmy Award nominations, and it’s currently the longest-running original series on Netflix at 52 episodes. Seasons 1-4 are already streaming, while season five is set to release in 2017.
The Ranch stars Ashton Kutcher as Colt, a former college football star whose life mission has been to make it to the pros. He returns to his hometown for a try-out, makes the team, and ends up staying to tend to his families’ ranch when he learns his father is in financial trouble. Danny Matherson plays Kutcher’s less socially successful brother who stayed to help their father with the ranch after Kutcher went to college. Seems like your basic sitcom…
The tone is so similar it truly feels like you’re watching an episode of “That ’70s Show” that happens to be on a ranch. The show can be a little bizarre and dull at times, but it’s still great that Kutcher and Matherson are back together again. Surprisingly, the series hasn’t gotten much buzz.
The first batch of 10 episodes have already been released, while the second batch are set to be released October 7, 2016. The Ranch has been renewed for a second season of 20 episodes.