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10 Unmissable TV Shows to Gobble up on Netflix

What the frack? You haven't seen Battlestar Galactica yet? Fix that and nine other omissions STAT
Kirstie McDermott's picture

By Kirstie McDermott @frillseeker

Tuesday, September 3, 2013 - 12:00

5 comments

Battlestar Galactica

Ok, so the Netflix we get isn't quite as fully featured as the service our cross-pond cousins have access to, but for €7 a month, I challenge you to not get full value out of it, especially when you can use it out of home too on your phone or tablet.

So quit yer whinin' Netfix naysayers. With that in mind, here are my top ten shows* you need to catch up on, or watch for the first time. Remember people. Seven euro. No, they're not paying me, more's the pity.

1. Battlestar Galactica

An embarrassment of sci-fi riches, this. Four fracking amazing series' of twists, turns, FDL drives spinning up, intrigue and issues handled in a way no science fiction show ever has before or since. The excruciating Caprica wasn't a patch on Battlestar Galactica, for shame.

And, here's the thing I think I love it for the most: it absolutely passes the Bechdel test, and then some. The Bechdel test? Oh, just a lil' thing so often - in fact usually - ignored in all forms of broadcast media. It asks whether a work of fiction features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man. And God knows, that's all us women do, right? Yawn.

Breaking Bad

2. Breaking Bad

Didn't get into it when it was on originally? No probs. Watch this tale of a meek man go rogue now and then finish up with the new series currently rolling out on Netflix. It's been accused of glorifying the meth trade but every character is completely horrible and unsympathetic so it's slightly hard to see how they're making a case for that. With lots of hands-over-eyes and violently black comedy moments, you really won't ever want to take drugs (again) after it.

Portlandia

3. Portlandia

It's hit and miss, sure, but the funny bits are laugh-out-loud. Carrie Browstein (yes, her from Sleater Kinney) and Fred Armisen (SNL) created this sketch show set in Portland, Oregon, a city famed for its hipsters. Lampooning so many behaviours you'll either recognise in yourself or others - obsessive 'foodie' assholery in restaurants, the need to have birds on all items of home decor, being a complete neurotic dick, etc - it's the ultimate send-up of white person first world problems.

Arrested Development

4. Arrested Development

You will be making a terrible mistake if you don't watch this from start to end. So many classic episodes. So many classic quotes. Tobias being a Never Nude. Mother Boy. Light treason. Such awesome casting. It's just genius. I even didn't hate the just-for-Netflix series they recently released and that's saying something, wha?

Firefly

5. Firefly

More sci-fi here with this single series that's a space western from the brilliant mind of Joss Whedon (Buffy), it seriously deserved more than a mere 14 episodes. Starring Nathan Fillion (he does lots of game VOs, fact fans), its popularity was such that it spawned a post-cancellation film, Serenity (named after the spaceship in the show) and continuing online fan support to bring it back. As you'd expect from something from Joss Whedon, it's funny, kind of bonkers and very entertaining.

Misfits

6. Misfits

Starring our own curly moptop Robert Sheehan, things start to go very wrong for a rag-tag bunch of delinquent brats on community service when weird-ass lightning strikes the South London resource centre they're meant to be cleaning up. Lots of blackly comedic moments, quasi-rubbish-superpower stuff and hijinks ensue.

Orange is the New Black

7. Orange is the New Black

I'm about halfway through this and it's looking mighty fine. WASP goes to low-security prison for white collar crime committed in her rebellious youth; endless cockups ensue. I'll let you know how I get on but I'm predicting-slash-knowing I'm going to have an insane amount of like.

Hemlock Grove

8. Hemlock Grove

This made me laugh so hard. Based on the 2012 book of the same name, It's not meant to be funny at all, and in fact super-serious horror man Eli Roth directed it. If you like your telly ridiculous, full of vampires, werewolves, complete gibberish, fluid-to-non-existent plotlines, nonsense and heavy-handedly evil femme fatales, then hey: you'll love Hemlock Grove.  And bingo! There's going to be a second series. All my side-splitting Christmasses have come at once!

Gossip Girl

9. Gossip Girl

Look. You've just got to, have to, need to watch all of this from start to finish if you've never seen it. The crazy carry on, the clothes, the shenanigans, the intrigues, THE CHUCK BASS. Mostly, to be honest, the Chuck Bass. The last season isn't on Netflix yet and I am living by the day until I can watch it all in one technicolour go. Love you Gossip Girl. XoXo.

It's Always Sunny in Philadephia

10. It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia

One of the finest shows of all time, this criminally-underrated comedy is laugh-out-loud hilarious. Following the exploits of four truly awful, horrible, vile human beings, Charlie, Dee, Denis and Mac, its genius really kicked off in season two when Danny DeVito joined the cast as Dee and Denis' dad. He brings a whole new level of mayhem to the mix and his and Charlie's plots and plans in particular are the stuff of script-writing genius. Now into its ninth season, there's just so much goodness to catch up on. Lucky, lucky you if this is a new one on your radar.

*I left House of Cards out simply cos I haven't watched it meself yet, like. I'm also reliably informed that TOWIE's on there too but I just can't.

Now, tell me what I've missed out/what I need to see/what you recommend in the comments. Go on!

Kirstie McDermott's picture
Kirstie McDermott

Kirstie is Frillseeker's founder and editor-in-chief. This is her second foray into the web-world: she founded Beaut.ie in 2006 before stepping down in 2012 and has held a large number of positions over the past number of years including acting beauty editor at Image magazine and beauty ed at the Sunday Tribune, Irish Examiner and Confetti. She's currently the deputy editor at STELLAR magazine.

@frillseeker

Comments

Chanelfreak's picture

Chanelfreak said...

We have vay, vay similar taste Kirstie - high five! Have you seen the American Horry Story series? First one was good, second one is awesome so I would definitely recommend.

At 4.22pm on September 3, 2013
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Chanelfreak's picture

Chanelfreak said...

And by Horry, I of course meant Horror. Ahem

At 4.22pm on September 3, 2013
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Gráinne's picture

Gráinne said...

Boyfriend just got Netflix last week and I am loving it, am about halfway through Orange Is The New Black and am having a nostalgic re-watching of Season 1 of Dawsons Creek - will definitely give some of these a viewing. :)

At 5.43pm on September 3, 2013
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Pam's picture

Pam said...

OITNB is the BEST thing I've watched in years. Cannot wait for series 2. House of Cards - excellent as well. Love the recommendations and going to get stuck in to them soon!

At 10.19pm on September 3, 2013
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Kirstie McDermott's picture

Kirstie McDermott said...

The utter joy of telly.
At 2.31pm on September 4, 2013
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