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It's Stranger Things Season 3 premiere week on Netflix, but that's not the only sci-fi original worth watching on the streamer. Sadly, Netflix doesn't have my favorite sci-fi show of the moment, The Expanse. That's currently over at Amazon. And you have to head to CBS All Access for Star Trek: Discovery and Patrick Stewart's upcoming Picard show.
But Netflix still has several good sci-fi series (and some halfway decent sci-fi movies), so here are five out of this world originals streaming to you at the speed of light!
I can't tell you how frustrated and heartbroken I was when Netflix declined to give Travelers a Season 4. Did Netflix forget about Protocol 1?! But that should not deter you from catching up on the first three seasons. I went into detail about how much I love this show, which sends "travelers" back from the future to try and save the world. On paper, that sounds like a sci-fi cliché, but the actual show is anything but. Eric McCormack leads a phenomenal cast (Jennifer Spence's Grace Day is a gift to the world) and I'd be shocked if the first episode didn't get you hooked right away.
If you like Travelers, also consider: Colony, which got three seasons on USA Network, all available now on Netflix.
Altered Carbon was more of a slow burn for me, but now I'm hooked and ready for Season 2. I like the idea of multiple actors playing Takeshi Kovacs, with new Captain America himself, Anthony Mackie, taking over from Joel Kinnaman for Season 2. The world that was established is complex and fascinating, and there's plenty of material to mine. But I'll be honest -- I cared mostly about Chris Conner's A.I. Edgar Poe, and when I heard he'd be returning for Season 2, I didn't need to know anything else. If nothing else, watch for him.
If you like Altered Carbon, also consider: Sense8, which got two seasons and a wrap-up finale, and the Netflix movie What Happened to Monday.
Lost in Space
I was skeptical about the Lost in Space reimagining, but the Robinsons (and the Robot) won me over. Also, I'm fascinated by Parker Posey's "Dr. Smith" and can't wait to love and hate her more through Season 2. The 10-episode first season came out in 2018. We know another season is coming, but Netflix hasn't set a date yet. You could watch it now, re-watch it now, or keep it in mind to watch right before Season 2 arrives. I'm going to have to go back and give myself a refresher before the new season to catch up on the danger Will Robinson was left in.
If you like Lost in Space, also consider: The Twilight Zone (the original Rod Serling series is available in its entirety on Netflix, so please please please watch them all).
Love, Death & Robots
This one -- called "stylish," "inventive," and "bonkers," but also "retrograde" "gruesome" and "hyper-masculine" -- isn't for everyone. And, unlike Lost in Space, it isn't exactly family-friendly, so it may not be for you. But it has gotten strong reactions, including a loyal fan base, so it may indeed be for you. Season 1 of the adult animation series has 18 standalone episodes, all under 20 minutes, and they were all made by different production crews. The whole thing comes from Tim Miller (Deadpool) and David Fincher (Fight Club) as a reimagining of their plans to reboot the 1981 animated sci-fi movie Heavy Metal. Netflix renewed Love, Death, & Robots for a Season 2, so more is coming.
If you like Love, Death & Robots, also consider: Black Mirror, which you should be watching anyway, but also the many, many versions of the interactive film Black Mirror: Bandersnatch.
I always like to include a recommendation for myself, and Dark has been on my Netflix list for a long time. Too long. But I know this is the kind of series that requires close attention, so I have to block out some time. It's not only a multi-layered sci-fi thriller series, it's in German -- the first German-language Netflix original series. Dark -- which starts by following disappearing children in a small German town -- has been compared to Stranger Things, but there's a time travel element adding depth and complexity. The first season came out in 2017 with 10 episodes, and eight more just dropped in June 2019. It's time for me to catch up, and prepare for the final Season 3, which Netflix has already ordered.
If you like Dark, also consider: Brazil's 3%, which I habitually recommend, plus The Rain, a post-apocalyptic series out of Denmark following a virus that's carried by rainfall that wipes out most of humanity in Scandinavia.
Those are just five sci-fi TV show options (plus bonus suggestions) to watch right now on Netflix. The streamer has plenty of non-original sci-fi shows to watch as well. What sci-fi shows are you enjoying on Netflix -- and what sci-fi shows are you also watching on Amazon, Hulu, CBS All Access, other streamers, or good old-fashioned network/cable TV? Also, I hope you bloody well watched the 5 British TV shows on Netflix I recommended last week.