Great Britain

The 20 best series to watch on Netflix right now

SELF-isolation and lockdown have made Brits retreat to their homes and stream to their hearts' content like never before.

But distraction is just a click away - look no further for our pick of Netflix's best series to binge on and beat the boredom.

1. Orange Is the New Black

This hit prison series revolved around Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), a 30-something woman who is sentenced to 15 months in Litchfield Penitentiary. The minimum-security women’s federal prison in upstate New York and the stories of the other inmates drives the series and you'll soon fool in love with the band of misfits. With seven seasons to binge on, it’s the perfect COVID-19 blackout show to watch. 

2. Stranger Things

The acclaimed series is seen as a love letter to 80’s sci-fi. Set in 1983, Indiana, a young boy vanishes into thin air under seriously dark circumstances. Family, friends and the local police begin searching for answers, however they stumble upon a mysterious young girl in a top-secret government facility. Starring Millie Bobby Brown, the series is suitable for tweens upwards.

3. The Stranger

If your fill of drama comes from mystery thrillers then look no further. This gripping whodunit follows a stranger who makes some shocking claims about members of a small town, throwing local families into chaos. One family man becomes entangled in a mystery of deadly proportions whilst searching for answers about his wife's pregnancy. The show is guaranteed to keep viewers on the edge of their seats with its many twists and turns.

4. The Haunting of Hill House

Turn the lights out and get ready to be scared out of your wits. With guaranteed jump scares this series is not for the light-hearted but perfect for avid horror fans. The story hops from past to present, following a family who are confronting their memories of living in their old home and what drove them away from it. There are some disturbing themes in the series, but the plot had fans demand a second season after the first outing, so that should tell you all you need to know.

5. Sex Education

Filled with laughs and socially awkward teens, this coming-of-age drama offers something different. Following the life of Otis Milburn (Asa Butterfield) and his sex therapist mum, expect cringes and giggles in equal measure. Due to his mother's teachings, the endless manuals and books he’s been exposed to, he uses his specialist knowledge to elevate his social status in school. Together with his friends, they set up an underground sex therapy clinic to help fellow students deal with their problems and ordeals. 

6. You

A tech-savvy young man living in New York uses modern resources to lure women into falling in love with him. However, the further you peer into his life, the more sinister it gets. Joe has skeletons in his closet, ones that are made evidently clear throughout the gripping series. If you enjoy suspense then You, is definitely one to add to the watch list. 

7. The Witcher

Fantasy fans looking to fill the void of Game of Thrones can be sure to love this one. A mutated monster hunter struggles to find his place in the world where it becomes increasingly difficult to decipher who is more wicked: human beings or beasts?

8. Love Is Blind

If you’re looking for a fix of love and drama then look no further. With this Love Island-esque reality series the contestants are thrown into a house and told to date on another in pods, where they cant see each other. The speed dating format is supposed to help them decide whether they want to get married after going on a set number of dates. Women and men are kept separate and they do not see each other in person until they are engaged. Viewers are in for a wild ride as contestants explore courtship like no other, with an explosive ending for many couples. 

9. The Crown

Looking at the British monarchy and the government, The Crown follows the two famous addresses - Buckingham Palace and 10 Downing Street. The scandals, their love lives and the events that shaped the second half of the 20th century make up the historic drama. Two houses, one court, one Crown.

10. Top Boy

Modern day gang members who are looking to get rich quick selling drugs rarely come without their own baggage and Top Boy is no different. Far from the likes of Power, Top Boy offers insight into the British gang scene and the trials and tribulations of these young men. 

11. Mindhunter

With the 1970’s as the backdrop, this story follows two FBI agents who are tasked with interviewing serial killers in order to solve older open cases. CSI enthusiasts will find the series absorbing, chilling and utterly addictive. Probably not for you if you're on the squeamish side though...

12. The Umbrella Academy

Based on the comic book series of the same name, The Umbrella Academy tracks forty-three infants who are born to an array of women who showed no symptoms of pregnancy until the day before they were due to give birth. Seven of them are adopted by a billionaire industrialist, Reginald Hargreeves, who creates The Umbrella Academy. He uses the children in his plans to save the world, but only ends up leaving the family fractured. They family disband and only reunite upon Hargreaves passing away, discovering his darkest secrets.

13. Pandemic 

More relevant now than ever, Pandemic hasn’t left the top of Netflix’s watch list for months. A compelling series that showcases what is being done to combat the deadly COVID-19 pandemic and what the outbreak can lead to. A no-frills, five part series that has arrived right on time. 

14. Gossip Girl 

If you’ve always wanted an insight on the lives of rich kids in New York, then this is the perfect escapism for you. These privileged teenagers create chaos on the Upper East Side while a blogger by the name of the show writes about them, airing their dirty laundry. The identity of the mysterious blogger isn’t revealed until the end and it’s a surprising twist to say the least. Starring You’s Penn Badgley and Blake Lively.

15. Jane The Virgin 

Telenovelas are a way of life for South Americans and this slice of life drama is no different. Based on the immaculate conception Bible story, the story follows Jane Villenuva, who is a virgin that is artificially inseminated. With a cop fiancé and her very Catholic grandmother in tow, it shows how her life progresses through her pregnancy and beyond. Throw in a few kidnappings, murders, drug lords and it's the all-rounded telenovela with a Western twist. 

16. Tiger King

Big cat breeding is illegal in many countries, but unfortunately this doesn't stop private zoo owners in the United States.

Joe Exotic is at the centre of this mind-blowing 7-part documentary.

The bizarre true crime series is messy and captivating, with twists and turns of deadly proportions.

Warring animal rights factions, professional sabotage and even assassination attempts all feature in this unprecedented show.

17. Atypical

A coming of age story that follows 18-year-old Sam (Keir Gilchrist), who is on the autistic spectrum, as he searches for love and independence.

The funny and emotional journey of self-discovery sees Sam's family struggle with questions of what it means to be 'normal' in the 21st century.

18. Gilmore Girls

Mother and daughter duo Loralai Gilmore (Lauren Graham) and Rory Gilmore (Alexis Bledel) show the humorous and heartfelt journey of friendship and family in this beloved classic.

It takes a cross-generational view of things, with single mother Lorelai's difficult relationship with her own parents also under the microscope, as well as Rory's journey through high school and university.

19. The IT Crowd

This British sitcom shows a group of computer geeks whose careers reside in the basement of a huge company.

The comedic adventures of the rag-tag team of co-workers see them regularly at odds with the company's boss, who is is technically inept and doesn't know the difference between software and hardware.

20. Money Heist 

An intelligent, enigmatic character who goes by the name of 'The Professor' plans a unique plot to carry out the biggest robbery in history.

The series also goes by the name of 'La Casa De Papel', which is the Spanish title for the crime drama series.

Both English subtitles and dubbing are available.

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