In a survey conducted by Netflix in February 2014, 73% of people define binge-watching as “watching between 2–6 episodes of the same TV show in one sitting.” Whoever finds watching 6 episodes at a time a bizarre concept has probably never seen any of the following shows.
Unfortunately Game of Thrones is not yet streaming on Netflix, so here’s my pick of the top TV shows currently available on the site that are worth a look-in.
Launched on Channel 4 in 2011, the series foresees the influence technology will have on our daily lives in the not so distant future. If you think the number of followers you have on Instagram has no relevance to your life, one episode imagines a world where a cumulative score decided by friends, family, coworkers and strangers determines what seat you’re assigned to on an aircraft.
Each episode follows a different story line so feel free to dive into the series at any point. A personal favourite is Season 3 Episode Hated in the Nation. This 90 minute episode tells the story of a police detective in London investigating mysterious deaths linked to social media. Don’t watch this if you’re scared of bees!
The Good Wife
After first airing in 2009, the show actually improved as the series went on. If you thought Julianna Margulies was good alongside George Clooney in E.R, it was her role on the Good Wife that defined her as one of televisions leading ladies.
Marguiles plays Alicia Florrick (“The Good Wife”), who returns to her career in law after her husband gets involved in public sex scandals and political corruption. Kalinda Sharma, a private investigator for Florrick’s firm is the secret weapon of the show. Played by Archie Panjabi, Kalinda is the ball-busing sidekick to Alicia that makes smart look sexy – a female character that didn’t have a place in television before 2009. A must see.
Jason Bateman plays Michael Bluth, the cool-headed brother in the family who keeps the family affairs in order after his father goes to prison. If Cheaper by the Dozen made me wish I’d grown up in a big family, Arrested Development made me glad I didn’t. A fun and quirky show and all-round crowd pleaser.
Breaking Bad is everyone’s favourite meth-laced drama that you’ve probably heard of. The show quietly amassed a cult following when it premiered back in 2008 and later blew up online after a social media frenzy. It follows a struggling high school chemistry teacher diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer who teams up with his former student to produce and sell crystal meth. Addictive.
Top of the Lake
Elisabeth Moss may be best known for her role as Peggy Olsen from Mad Men. However, it’s Moss’ highly courageous performance in Top of the Lake that will be seen as her most memorable, at least for now.
Set in New Zealand, Moss plays a detective who in search of a missing 12 year old girl is deemed intrusive by small town locals. The backdrop of tall trees and still water is not reflected by a tranquil town . In her pursuit to find the missing girl, drug trafficking, guns and misogyny frustrate her every move. A sublime Sundance masterpiece.
Dexter is the modern day superhero. Michael C. Hall plays a forensic technician specializing in blood spatter pattern analysis for the Miami Metro Police Department. Dexter leads a secret life as a vigilante serial killer, however, he only hunts down murderers who have slipped through the cracks of the justice system. Don’t worry, he only kills the really bad guys. There’s a fine line between this crime drama mystery series and straight up horror. Sunny Miami and his quirky protective sister keep the show light-hearted and entertaining. Not all Superheroes wear capes, some wear surgical gloves!
Before the days of Googling the answer on your smartphone, I would be the team member at a table quiz able to list all of Henry VIII‘s wives thanks to my obsession with this show. Sex, power and violence are a great recipe for any drama series, but this one takes the crown for shock value and scandal story telling.
We know the story line and the tragic fate for many of the characters we’re introduced to in the series (Anne Boleyn in particular), but that won’t stop you squirming in your seat at the shows tensest moments. Jonathan Rhys Meyers is so great as Henry VIII that you can almost empathise with his deluded actions.
Click here to stream any of these shows on Netflix now.
Please leave a comment below and let me know what’s too good not to be on this list!