It’s no secret that the creation of Netflix and its recent tendency to stream quite the variety of TV shows has forever changed the world of television. Binge-watching has become a common, well-known term in our culture and Netflix has thus given its users the chance to catch up with current shows and discover shows that perhaps aired before the watcher was even born.
The site gives people a myriad of possibilities when it comes to picking what to watch. You might stumble across that obscure Nickelodeon or Disney TV movie that you watched once you were five but just couldn’t remember the name of. You can marathon Say Yes to the Dress or your select Kardashian spinoff series because, why not?
As an devout Netflix fan who practically only watches Netflix, I’d like to recommend three scripted, non-reality/competition television shows that you can find in their entirety on the streaming website.
1. Lost – Maybe this recommendation is futile, because so many people watched Lost as it aired, but, if you’re like me, you were a little too young for it when it originally premiered on ABC in 2004. I personally started watching the show on Netflix last year and am nearly finished with the final season (yes, i know what’s coming at the end, no need for warnings). This cult drama has very quickly become one of my favorite TV programs ever. It begins with a plane crash on an uncharted, mysterious island, and portrays the crash survivors adapting to each other and the environment. As the days pass, they realize that there is nothing normal about where they’ve landed. The events that soon unfold are almost supernatural, but the character-driven plotlines and exceptional cast (Once Upon a Time viewers will recognize many actors, as OUAT was created by former Lost producers) are truly what makes Lost the amazing show it is. I cannot recommend it more.
SHOW LENGTH: 6 seasons.
TYPICAL EPISODE LENGTH: 43 minutes.
2. Scrubs – As main character JD once said, Grey’s Anatomy is “like they’ve been watching our lives and just… put it on TV.” Well, not quite. While Scrubs is a show about doctors and their experiences together, it is instead a comedy, and quite a unique one at that. Episodes are often narrated by JD’s internal monologues and there is a great emphasis on physical comedy. Although jokes may come at you one after another, episodes end with reflective scenarios that often make you stop and think about your own life. Plus, JD’s bromance with his best friend Turk is one for the history books. For fans of The Middle, Neil Flynn appears in Scrubs as the unpredictable and kookily hilarious Janitor, a role vastly different from Mike Heck. I recommend this if you are also a fan of The Office or Parks and Recreation, but the true style of Scrubs is one that I’ve yet to find in any other show.
SHOW LENGTH: 9 seasons.
TYPICAL EPISODE LENGTH: 21 minutes.
3. The Wonder Years – Starring Fred Savage (Ben’s big brother) as inquisitive suburban kid Kevin Arnold, The Wonder Years depicts Kevin growing up in the late 1960s and early 70s. Also featured are Kevin’s relationships with his family, his best friend Paul, and his longtime crush Winnie Cooper. Now, this show isn’t for everyone and I’ll be the first to admit that it can feel a little slow sometimes. But certain episodes (“The Powers That Be” and “Christmas” are two of my favorites) tug on your heartstrings and stir up memories of your own childhood. If there’s one thing The Wonder Years doesn’t lack, it’s nostalgia. Heartfelt moments of the show lead to the revelation that, even if something is set in a long ago era, there is a bond among humanity that never fades with age. I think lovers of Boy Meets World would definitely appreciate this show of “the other Savage brother”.
SHOW LENGTH: 6 seasons.
TYPICAL EPISODE LENGTH: 23 minutes.
There are obviously an enormous amount of other streaming shows on Netflix, and I like to think that hitting up some cultural icons is best to do when using Netflix for the first time. Of course, also pick to watch what you believe you will like!
What other shows are currently available on Netflix that you think are worthy of recommendations?