The 14 Best Netflix Shows You’re Not Watching

Sarah O NeillSarah O Neill in Entertainment, Netflix, TV
Published 16.08.19

Everyone knows Netflix continuously puts out some big-hitters. From the gigantic Stranger Things to Arrested Development (well, at least the earlier series), it’s always got a great show you can awkwardly use as a talking point with your less friendly colleagues.

However, some of the best programmes available on the platform often seem to fall under the radar.

So, with the immense number of series to choose from, we’ve narrowed down the best shows available on Netflix that no-one watched, so you know you’re not missing out on those less talked-about hits.

1. Schitt$ Creek

Despite having a pretty big following in America, Daniel Levy’s Schitt$ Creek seems to have been missed by a UK audience. Don’t let the unfortunate name put you off, this reverse rags-to-riches story has some really great moments of comedy, as well as some genuinely touching parts. Following a family that loses everything, and is forced to move into the small town brought as a joke, the characters consistently grow over the seasons. Also, Catherine O’Hara’s Moira has an inexplicable accent makes every little thing she says hilarious.

If you’re a fan of feel-good American character-driven comedies like Parks and Rec, and The Office, this is the show for you, with each of the family becoming more and more likeable as the series go on.

2. Dark Tourist

Following a presenter seeming more politely-confused by any situation than Louis Theroux can muster on a good day, Dark Tourist delves into the insane tourist spots available for you to visit all over the world.

The Japan episode is particularly good; on a visit to a nuclear test site, the guide continues to downplay the radiation risk, despite the numbers increasing on the Geiger counters as the tour continues. With other visits to oddities such as the Fred and Rose West museum and a full-scale replica of Noah’s arc, prepare yourself for a bizarre experience, as you would fully expect from the people who made “Tickled”.

3. Historical Roasts

Named the “Roastmaster General”, Jeff Ross and guests each take turns to rip apart a figure from history. Parodying the popular roast of celebrities, Historical Roasts has had some mixed reviews, but that doesn’t mean it’s not really fun to watch (but if you’re a not a fan of dark humour however, best to avoid the Anne Frank episode). A highlight is the Freddie Mercury roast, in which David Bowie – played by Seth Green- Kurt Cobain and Princess Diana throw their two-cents in on the singer’s life.

4. Evil Genius

Despite being on of the most bizarre cases in recent American History, both Evil Genius and the case itself has flown under the true-crime radar. With enough unseen turns and untied leads to make your head spin, this documentary is a must-watch for any fans of the genre. With a bank heist, a collar bomb, and too-smart-to catch criminals, Evil Genius has enough intrigue and reveal to keep you hooked from the first episode.

The show delves into the background and intentions of those involved, mainly focusing on the character of Marjorie Diehl-Armstrong, who’s planned and calculated behaviour makes her a fascinating study. With Netflix’s other docu-series like Wild Wild Country receiving far more foot traffic, it’s worth checking out this case for it’s uniqueness alone.

5. Worst Cooks in America

So, there are a lot of cooking shows out there. Master-Chef if you’re a fan of weirdly high-octane shows about poaching eggs and watching grown adults cry over tiramisu, or Great British Bake Off if you just want to see happy people making cakes. Work Cooks in America, however, is exactly what it says on the tin- a group of the worst Chefs out there come together to brag about how they’ve never made a meal, and are then forced to make a meal. With $25,000 on the line, the contestants have a pretty good incentive to learn what a spatula is.

6. Almost Royal

Another comedy on the list, Almost Royal is a mockumentary-style reality show following two fictional royal family members. Successfully fooling a whole bunch of Americans, Ed Gamble and Amy Hoggart road trip across the US carrying their fake father’s ashes on a last-farewell tour of the country.

Trying out a number of activities the pair deem “American”, the humour of the show comes from the incredulous victims, who try and appease every whim and eccentricity of the ‘siblings’. A highlight being the particularly angry barista who has to calm down after an innocently ill-judged comment from Gamble.

7. Rea(L)ove

More intense and weird than Love Island could ever be, Rea(L)ove follows the interactions and dates of a number of couples as they try to find love. Although, this is a dating show with a twist; each contestant has a secret which has affected their life deeply, and will be revealed over the course of the show. A bit iffy at times in regards to the contestants reactions to the reveals, Rea(L)ove has some genuinely sweet moments and happy endings.

8. Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency

Flying so under the radar that it was cancelled before it’s third season, Dirk Gently’s Hollistic Detective Agency is based loosely on the book of the same name (I promise I’m not trying to get you to watch this out of purely selfish reasons to get it renewed). With a great ensemble cast, the show primarily centres around ‘holistic detective’ Dirk Gently, and his reluctant side kick played by Elijah Wood. With plot lines of psychic powers, assassins, police detectives, and secret Government programmes, the overlapping storylines are just bizarre enough that they work.

(God, this show needs to get renewed).

With a petition currently going around asking for another season, it could do with a few more viewers before Netflix would consider taking it on, so why not take the chance? (i.e please watch this show so I can get it renewed!)

9. The Toys That Made Us

Made up of interviews, narrations, and cartoons, this nostalgic docu-series details the life and success of many toys that featured in all of our childhoods. Following the life-cycle of favourites such as Hello Kitty, Barbie, He-Man and LEGO, the series looks into the rise and fall and rise again of each company, and how close it often came for these toy lines to never have existed in the zeitgeist like they did. Series three is in development right now, so now is the best time to catch up with history of the worlds most influential toy lines.

10. Atypical

Not your usual coming-of-age drama, Atypical centres in on the life of Sam, a teenager on the autistic spectrum, and his quest to find a girlfriend. Through his story, he encourages his family to consider their own choices alongside his changes, with each person struggling with their own issues silently kept from each other, which often is in stark contrast to Sam’s openness. The show itself has many individuals with autism in the cast and on the production team, especially in the second season, which allows it to focus on a perspective that is often overlooked in the media, as from both the main character and supporting cast.

11. iZombie

Named like a pre-Black Mirror Charlie Brooker series, iZombie has just finished its final season, to pretty good reviews. Based on a comic book of the same name, the series takes a pretty casual view on the zombie genre, veering into elements of comedy, crime, and horror. Taking on the personality traits of the corpses she eats, Liv Moore (no bonus points for the name) aids the police in solving crimes. With such a niche plot, it’s not surprising there’s not been much of an audience. But with the over-saturation of both police procedurals and zombie dramas, the trick to keeping the genres fresh might be to combine them, monster-movie style.

12. Jane the Virgin

A loose adaptation of the telenovela Juana la Virgen, Jane the Virgin satirises and parodies the genre it stemmed from, featuring all the twists, turns and dramatic reveals you would expect, alongside moments of genuine pathos and comedy. The show does not solely rely on just it’s referential humour; following the accidental artificial insemination of Jane Villanueva who is – unsurprisingly – a virgin, the story focuses mainly on the three generations of Villanueva women, each with their independent plot lines and charming family dynamics.

13. Flowers

Another family-based show with an ensemble cast, Flowers features Olivia Colman and The Mighty Boosh’s Julian Barrett adjacent from each other in excruciatingly awkward and darkly comedic roles. This comedy-drama focuses on the eccentric Flowers family, each character showing their own oddities and flaws, and presents the frustration of five individually brilliant people living their separate and incompatible lives in very close quarters. Unsettling at times, the series looks into a number of serious issues, such as metal illness, suffocating loneliness, and rage (I mean the show does start up with an attempted suicide), but with enough bold and dark humour that it seems like a realistic portrait of familial struggle and individual confusion.

14. Kirlian Frequency

Atmospheric and visually odd, the comic-book like Kirlian Frequency has a creepy backstory to go alongside the plot. Disappearing from all social media platforms in 2018, the web-series was finally re-announced when it was brought back by Netflix in January. Set in a small town with a big mystery, the first episode starts the series off with the smooth talking radio host, who within the first four minutes has kidnapped and threatened a ‘celebrity guest’. Big on it’s visual storytelling, this series uses inter-tiles, found footage, and on-screen text to pack a whole lot into five 10 minute episodes – so if it’s not really for you, at least it’s short.