While Netflix started out as a movie service, fans now tend to think of the streaming platform's extensive library of great shows. Netflix has so many great TV shows that it can be hard to know where to begin. Whether you're streaming a new series from the comfort of your couch, or downloading series to watch on your phone to watch later, here are 21 of the best Netflix shows streaming in 2021.
New Netflix Original Series
Netflix is the gold standard for streaming service original series. It now has an excellent original show empire, from the co-produced Lilyhammer, to its first big in-house hit with House of Cards, and beyond. Here's a list of the must-see Netflix original series you'll want to watch next.
Based on the romance novel series by Julia Quinn, Shonda Rhimes' Bridgerton follows eight close-knit siblings of a powerful family in Regency-era England as they attempt to find love. The steamy series was a breakout hit when it dropped in December 2020 and is definitely NSFW.
Behind Her Eyes
Behind Her Eyes stars Eve Hewson as a single mother who is forced into a world of messy mind games when she begins an affair with her psychiatrist boss while simultaneously befriending his wife.
Netflix's latest reality series, Bling Empire follows a crew of insanely wealthy Asian and Asian American adventure-seekers as they experience all the glamour and drama in Los Angeles.
Firefly Lane tells the story of lifetime BFFs Tully Hart (Katherine Heigl) and Kate Mularkey (Sarah Chalke), who meet as young girls on Firefly Lane and navigate the ups and downs of friendship throughout 30 years.
Fate: The Winx Saga
In Fate: The Winx Saga, a group of teenage fairies attends a magical boarding school in the Otherworld, where they are tasked with learning how to use their magical powers while also navigating love, rivalries, and the monsters that are out to end the fairies for good.
Ginny & Georgia
Ginny & Georgia follows 15-year-old Ginny Miller, who moves to a new England town with her 30-year-old mother Georgia and her little brother Austin after the death of her father. While the family begins to assimilate in their new hometown, secrets from the past start to complicate things in the present.
Netflix Lupin is a modern-day retelling of the classic French story about Arsène Lupin, a world-famous thief and master of disguise. The 10-episode series follows Lupin on a mission to clear his father's name after he was framed for the theft of an expensive diamond necklace by his employer.
Fan-favorite Netflix Original Series
In addition to the relatively new Netflix Original Series listed above, the streaming service also has a backlog of originals that have already come to a close, or have been waiting for several seasons. Here's a list of some of the long-running Netflix Original Series you'll want to binge next.
BoJack Horseman, a delightfully strange and surreal show, is the kind of show that could have only lived six full seasons on Netflix. This animated series focuses on the titular former TV star as he figures out a life among addiction and absurdity.
Follow Queen Elizabeth II as she rules in this drama that follows the British Royalty. Season 4 of The Crown debuted in November 2020 and made headlines for centering on the dramatic courtship and marriage between Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
Picked up by Netflix ahead of its fourth season, Lucifer follows the titular fallen angel, who becomes disenchanted with his life in hell and decides to retire to Los Angeles. After Lucifer meets the inherently good Detective Chloe Decker, he begins to wonder if his soul can be saved.
Narcos: Mexico is a continuation of Netflix's Narcos series and explores the origins of the modern drug war by going back to the '80s, when the burgeoning Mexican trafficking world consisted of a disorganized confederation of independent growers and dealers.
An evolution of the original series, Queer Eye on Netflix has an all-new crew of experts that go beyond makeovers. The updated squad gets to the root of the emotions that got people in dire need of help. Prepare to watch with tissues.
Stranger Things has racked up love from fans, critics, and Netflix, as the show has delivered attention and views. Dive into the supernatural, conspiracies, and the Upside-Down with local, small-town kids and the superpowered Eleven.
The Witcher follows a monster hunter as he deals with people he can't strike down at will. Fans of the book series, along with newcomers, have been overall positive about the first season of this Netflix adaptation. Season 2 is expected to drop sometime in 2021.
Best Netflix Library Series
Not every great show on Netflix is an original. Netflix also has plenty of series in its library that aired on other networks. Some of these have new seasons airing now, while others are about to ship off to other streaming services. Enjoy these great shows as part of Netflix today.
Watch all five seasons of Breaking Bad -- one of the most highly regarded TV shows ever -- and celebrate how its popularity grew through streaming. Walter White goes from chemistry teacher to drug lord while battling cancer.
Better Call Saul
Better Call Saul is the prequel series to Breaking Bad and offres its own brand of fresh, tense and surprising twists. It explores lawyer Jimmy McGill's downward spiral toward becoming Saul Goodman. The first five seasons are streaming on Netflix, with the sixth and final season expected to air on AMC in early 2022.
Call the Midwife
Call the Midwife became a hit in the states on PBS, but the first eight seasons of the British series are streaming now on Netflix. Follow the lives of midwives from a nursing convent in the '50s if you're looking for a period drama.
The Good Place
The Good Place ends up being so much more than the funny, quirky sitcom you think it is. Take a journey through the afterlife with four people who are anything but normal by streaming all four seasons now.
This is a love story for all time...travel. In Outlander, a 1900's English nurse and a 1700's Scottish rebel meet under strange circumstances. Watch as each season tells the tales first told in Diana Gabaldon's popular novel series.
Canadian comedy Schitt's Creek has become a hit in the U.S. too, as the series imagines the life of a rich family that loses everything except a town they bought as a lark. All six seasons are streaming now.
Supernatural wrapped up on The CW in late 2020, and now all 15 seasons are available to stream on Netflix. The series stars Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles as brothers Sam and Dean Winchester, who face a sinister and scary landscape as they hunt monsters across the United States.
The Best of the Best for you
Netflix has TV shows to suit nearly any taste, so it should be possible to find something just right for you. Plus, it's easy to sign up, upgrade or download your Netflix account at any time.
With new content constantly being added to the platform, it can be a bit overwhelming to decide which are the best Netflix shows to watch right now. Along those lines, you might want to start streaming something that's already trending on the homepage. If you're looking for a family dramedy to watch with your mom, Ginny & Georgia might do the trick. And if you're looking for something a bit darker, full of unexpected twists and turns, Behind Her Eyes might be more your vibe.
You'll also find a Netflix classic in Stranger Things, which is packed with both '80s nostalgia and excellent acting from the youngsters, who have the freedom to behave like real kids amidst scary situations. If you'd rather check some things out that are a bit different, take a ride with BoJack Horseman or the award-wining Schitt's Creek. Both of these shows tap into a specifically unique brand of humor, and there's a real pleasure that comes from knowing the entire series is ready for you to binge.
Reality series are also a good option for viewers looking to hear about real people who are thrust into extraordinary experiences, and that's where Bling Empire or Queer Eye might come into play. And if you want to catch up on something that's equally silly and dark, you Better Call Saul before the new season premieres.
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