At this point, it’s almost funny how many shows Netflix decides to release each year, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t tons of awesome picks out there to watch. There are super popular series on the streaming site, like Stranger Things or the massive 2020 hit, Bridgerton, however, we’re here to talk about the underrated shows.
I’m talking great series like Living With Yourself, or I Am Not Okay With This, that flew under the radar and deserve so much more praise than they get. Today, we’ll talk about the underrated Netflix original shows, and how you can watch them right now.
The Get-Down (2016-2017)
The cancellation of this show is a crime to me. The Get-Down is set in the Bronx in the 1970s, and tells of the rise of hip-hop and disco through the eyes of a group of talented teenagers, all trying to chase their own dreams.
One of the key factors of this show is the music. It’s so incredibly catchy. I remember when it first came out, I was listening to the soundtrack constantly. The performances themselves are great, with the talented Justice Smith performing some awesome raps and bringing great personality to his role as Zeke. It’s so much fun. The first season was split into two parts and canceled afterward, but honestly, it deserved much more time.
Dear White People (2017-Present)
The comedy series Dear White People, based on the film of the same name, follows several black college students who attend a (fictional) Ivy League university, and constantly deal with issues of the modern-day experiences of an African Americans, as well as the constant issue of race relations.
I know, for something that dives into such heavy topics, you wouldn’t expect it to be a comedy. But, Dear White People handles it exceptionally well, combining a mixture of dark comedy with serious messages that everyone should learn about. Each episode focuses on a particular character, showing the different aspects of life for them compared to everyone else. The show is currently still running, with a fourth and final season coming soon, so be sure to catch up.
In Gentefied, a play on the word “gentrified,” we get to follow the lives of three Mexican-American cousins who are struggling to achieve what they believe is the American Dream. However, when their neighborhood begins to disappear due to gentrification, it creates another whirlwind of problems for them.
This show is perfect for you to learn what is happening inside neighborhoods like the Bronx or Brooklyn right now, because the people's daily lives are being taken away due to gentrification. Gentefied is a great mix of comedy and drama, and doesn’t hold back from telling you what is going on in the world. The series has been renewed for Season 2, so you’ll be able to catch more episodes with this great family soon.
One Day At A Time (2017-2020)
One Day At a Time is a remake of a series from 1975, only this time following the lives of a Cuban-American family. The main character is Penelope Alvarez, an. Army Nurse Corps veteran, who is facing her return to civilian life and living with her children and mother after being in the army.
One Day at a Time is the perfect comedy-drama series for today. Not only is it super funny, but it deals with serious topics that you wouldn’t normally expect in a sitcom, such as immigration, sexism, homophobia, racial identity and so many more. It’s a great way to re-imagine the original series, and offers new stories for people of this generation to enjoy. With three seasons on Netflix (and one other through Pop), the show has plenty of awesome momentsand deserves so much more love.
The End Of The F*ing World (2017-2019)
This is one of my favorite underrated series. In The End of the F*ing World, we follow James, a 17-year-old who believes that he is a psychopath, and Alyssa, an angry classmate who meets James and sees him as a way out of her home life.
This show is so ridiculous, and that’s what makes it so much fun. Whatever you’re expecting to happen, it doesn’t. There are so many twists and turns, and the acting from both Alex Lawther and Jessica Barden is great, along with their amazing chemistry.
Living With Yourself (2019)
If you love Paul Rudd, then you’ll be seeing double in this Netflix series and loving it. Living With Yourself follows the story of Miles Elliot, a man who, after undergoing a strange treatment that promises a better life for him, discovers that he’s actually been replaced by a clone.
Let’s just start this off by saying that Paul Rudd has so much chemistry even with himself, it’s impossible not to like this series. The jokes land well, the story is great, and Paul Rudd does exceptionally well literally playing two versions of himself. When this show first came out, I wished it got more hype than it did. Paul Rudd really does shine.
Julie And The Phantoms (2020)
If you want a musical show, then look no further than Julie and the Phantoms. In this dramedy, we follow the story of Julie, a teenager who is struggling to make music following her mother’s death. Then, out of nowhere, Julie accidentally summons a ghost band from the past and eventually starts her own band with them.
I know, the premise sounds absolutely ridiculous, but Julie and the Phantoms has so much going for it. The story is a lot of fun, the music catchy, and the jokes land each time. I mean, what else can you expect with High School Musical's Kenny Ortega being one of those behind the series? The man knows his musicals well. While Season 2 hasn’t been announced yet, so many fans want it, so it might only be a matter of time.
I Am Not Okay With This (2020)
In I Am Not Okay With This, we get to follow the story of Sydney, a seemingly normal 17-year-old girl, who over time ends up developing special powers that change her life forever.
Let me start off by saying that the acting talents of Sophia Lillis were outstanding in this show, and really allowed her the platform to shine and show off that she is a leading lady. Not only that, but the jokes in this dark comedy paired so well with the superhero aspects. The story was intriguing and interesting to follow, too. Everything hit so well for this Netflix show. Apparently, the show was canceled due to COVID-19 related reasons, but we can at least give it the love it deserves now on Netflix.
Judd Apatow strikes again in the romantic comedy department with this underrated Netflix show. In Love, we get a look at the real world of dating by exploring the different perspectives of females and males in relationships, through the main characters, Mickey and Gus.
Community’s Gillian Jacobs and Paul Rust (Super Fun Night) really carry this series, showing off the different ways they view love, date, and look at the world. This Judd Apatow project has hysterical comedy, with great romance. I’m genuinely surprised that this show only ran for three seasons and not several more, with how funny some of the jokes are. You’ll find yourself laughing a lot with this series.
To me, these are some of the best shows on Netflix and should be talked about way more. While there are plenty of 2021 Netflix TV shows coming out soon, like Season 2 of The Witcher or Bridgerton Season 2, maybe give one of these underrated shows a chance. I promise you, you won’t regret it.
Big nerd and lover of Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire. Will forever hate season eight. Superhero and horror geek. And please don't debate me on The Last of Us 2, it was amazing!
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