More and more, Netflix is giving us reason to cut our cable and go straight to digital streaming for our entertainment. A huge bang for our buck, the platform has given viewers a library of fantastic television shows and movies. That said, where Netflix is really making its mark is in the original programming department.
Tackling both movies and television, subscribers of the Netflix service have been given exclusive access to some fantastic content. The promise of this type of programming to continue is even more exciting.
But, like any production company, Netflix doesn’t always get things 100 percent right. With every hit comes more misses, and while some of the most popular shows in history can be found on Netflix, so can some of the worst.
We’ve decided to give you a little taste of both with this following list of 15 shows. These are exclusively Netflix original television series, and many of them are well-known to Netflix users. If you haven’t seen these shows, we’re here to do our best to steer you in the right direction. Your mileage may vary on what you believe makes for good entertainment, but for the most part, our list consists of shows that were either widely criticized or loved.
We’ll try to explain why these shows are either nauseating or great, and then you can determine if you still feel they’re worth watching, or potentially, binge-watching which Netflix users often do. Below is our list of 10 of the most nauseating Netflix original series and five that are great.
15. Nauseating: Iron Fist
This show was supposed to be one of Netflix’s most anticipated dives into the Marvel Universe, and it has Marvel fans completely divided. Some will stick with the show because it’s Marvel and others realize how badly written and silly it is at times. There is, of course, punching and fighting which is kind of the idea of the show. But it doesn’t make up for terrible optics and implausible action. In many cases, the fight scenes aren’t even all that good (an area that should be priority no. 1).
Iron Fist is easily the weakest of all the Marvel shows on Netflix, and it fails in so many ways. The series is too long, there are no real villains worth enjoying, and the bizarre storytelling and plot holes are almost too hard to ignore. But, for those fans who love Marvel, they’ll probably overlook all that in anticipation for how this connects to the other shows in the Marvel Universe and for whatever is coming down the pipe next.
14. Nauseating: Hemlock Grove
The thing about a platform like Netflix is that you can go back and watch shows that have already run their course and ended. If you choose to do that with a show just to try something new, don’t choose Hemlock Grove. It got canned for a reason.
It was one of Netflix’s first original series, and at that stage of Netflix productions, it was almost like trial and error; this one specifically being an error. The show is full of bad acting, the terrible accents are painfully slow, and it’s shot in a way that makes it look dirty and inexpensive. The special effects are not good, and the producers and editors simply left in mistakes as if to say, “Ah, what the heck, who’s going to notice?” It was damned by the critics and for good reason.
13. Great: Ozark
Ozark is dark drama starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney. The two play an unhappy couple forced to move their already hostile family dynamic to the Lake of the Ozarks after a failed “business relationship” with a drug cartel. There are scenes that are difficult to watch. But that being said, this is one of Netflix’s best new shows. The show almost forces you as a viewer to root for main characters who are not good people. Yet, you do and you feel relieved as they get through obstacles.
Bateman shows major acting chops and is fantastic as the main character forced to launder money all while dealing with a family who loves him and knows they have to go along but hate what he’s done to them by getting them in this mess. Linney is great as the estranged wife, and the adversaries are frequent but creative and original. And the best part is, they just keep coming.
12. Nauseating: Friends From College
The show Friends From College should be so much better than it is. Made by the husband-and-wife team that brought you Forgetting Sarah Marshall (Nicholas Stoller and Francesca Delbanco), the show has a fantastic cast. Still, Keegan-Michael Key, Cobie Smolders, Fred Savage, and Nat Faxon, among others, don’t make these blah stories about their lives interesting or funny. They’re just six old Harvard graduate friends, all of whom have messy relationships between them.
This is a show that is meant for people who think it’s cool to say they’re from Harvard, have affairs, and act like immature idiots well into their adult lives. Most of the normal characters who play smaller parts have it right when you see them struggling to like the main cast. It’s because they’re not likable. They’re just immature. If you’re 40, I suppose it’s a good show to make you feel better about yourself. So in that respect, it does have some use.
11. Nauseating: Haters Back Off
Miranda Sings is a YouTube phenomenon. Her videos have received billions of views, tons of subscribers, and, in some cases, the channel has some uniquely interesting stuff on it. For the most part, it’s not terribly funny but it struck a chord with its audience who flocked to the channel in droves. And, because it’s popular, Netflix decided to give Colleen Ballinger (the woman who plays Miranda) her own Netflix original series called Haters Back Off. It’s awful and the haters should not back off.
In the show, Ballinger plays Miranda as a wannabe singer who can’t really sing. The idea here is that she’s odd and so is her family. And despite how much people tell her that she can’t do it or she sucks, she keeps on trucking along in an awkward helpless kind of way.
The show does not allow for what made the YouTube videos popular, which is a short outbreak of chalkboard-scratching comedy. Instead, the show is full of obsolete comedy, and a 30-minute presentation is not the right format for this kind of material.
10. Great: Stranger Things
Like a wicked mashup of Stand By Me and Goonies, this show is one you’ll find yourself watching all the way through in one sitting. It’s also all about the ’80s which is totally radical. It is one of Netflix’s best original series in history, and Season 2 is going to be highly anticipated by a huge audience.
The show has turned its relatively unknown actors into stars and all based on the fact that almost any type of viewer can get into the story. It starts with the story of a missing boy, and it gets nuts from there. It’s a simple premise that all of a sudden becomes a science-fiction thriller in ways you couldn’t have imagined. Winona Ryder is also extremely believable as the missing boy’s mother, and it’s nice to see her bounce back in this role. This is definitely high on my list of recommended shows. I’ve already watched the first season twice.
9. Nauseating: Flaked
In Flaked, Will Arnett plays a character named Chip. Chip is a recovering alcoholic. He constantly gives advice to his other alcoholic friends because they believe he’s the only recovered one in the group; only he isn’t and he’s a constant screw-up. That’s the background. The story isn’t much better.
The whole idea of a show is a complicated love triangle between Chip and his friend, Dennis, both of whom like the same woman. The catch is that Dennis spotted her first and while the girl doesn’t seem to like Dennis and does, in fact, like Chip, Chip struggles with how to deal with the situation and not screw over his friend. We lose you yet?
Although the show is written by, executive produced by, and stars Arnett (someone who is normally quite good), the series is boring and drawn-out. It could have been an idea told in a much shorter time frame, but they tried to stretch a bad premise into multiple hours of dull comedy. It already got shorted by two episodes upon its renewal for Season 2. It’s one of Netflix’s lowest-rated shows on Rotten Tomatoes.
8. Nauseating: Fuller House
The audiences that watch Fuller House seem to love this show. The critics don’t and it’s easy to see why. Instead of the wholesome but extremely campy Full House we all grew up watching, Fuller House is a tweener-type show that edges on inappropriate for kids in some places but too cheesy for adults in other places.
What was supposed to be a nostalgic reintroduction into the Tanner world (the kids are grown up and having kids or troubles of their own), the show immediately crosses into a mix of too many puns and catchphrases from the early episodes along with an overdose of the bland family comedy we all loved at first, but now find nauseating. There’s a good reason Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen skipped coming back for the quick buck that was the reboot. They were smart to stay away.
That said, the show has an audience, and the stars of it are probably doing quite well for themselves. This was their ticket to some easy money and a steady acting gig, and they took it. Good for them.
7. Great: G.L.O.W
This is the kind of show that makes you finally admit you’re a fan of professional wrestling, but the beauty is, you don’t have to like wrestling to like this show. Full of great acting, funny characters, and ’80s stereotypes, the show is sweet and edgy, and it’s one of Netflix’s best female-led shows currently being produced.
The show is about a group of failed actresses who have no choice but to join the circus of a television show called G.L.O.W. (Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling). If they could do anything else, they would, but they weirdly get attracted to this underground way of making a living, all the while fighting with each other and their director.
6. Nauseating: Arrested Development
Some things are just better left alone. When Netflix decided to revive Arrested Development, it made a mistake by taking a much different approach to the show than what fans were used to. Instead of continuing on in what they called Season 4, the show took a more Act 1 and Act 2 approach, focusing on each character individually, which made the show extremely boring.
Characters like Michael (Jason Bateman) were made to look pathetic, and when presented by himself, instead of with the family as a whole, the entire premise of the show was lost and not nearly as entertaining. What makes this so painful is that Arrested Development was one of TV’s great dysfunctional masterpieces. Now, it’s just dysfunctional. It appears as though the show is going to be coming back for another season. If it does, here’s to hoping there are major changes.
5. Nauseating: Marco Polo
This show has its fans and mostly because they’re probably searching for another way to get into something that even remotely resembles Game of Thrones. I suppose if that’s what the producers of Marco Polo were going for, it’s the closest thing Netflix offers to the hugely popular HBO series. But as a show on its own merit, it’s beautiful but not very good.
A series meant to mix history, storytelling, and extensive fight scenes and throws in a ton of women in the buff, it’s like a one-man band on the street corner. It’s something to watch, but it doesn’t necessarily offer expertise in any one particular area. The most we can suggest is that the acting isn’t wonderful but it is full of beautiful cinematography. Some have called it “the most gorgeous thing you’ll ever fall asleep to.” The show has a huge following, but critics seem to hate it. Most of the viewers are somewhere in between.
4. Great: House Of Cards
This is a show on the verge of losing its grip on what made it so good. But because of how fantastic the first couple seasons were, it is worth letting that slide and a definite recommendation. Kevin Spacey plays President Frank Underwood who’s ruthless, unethical, and power-hungry to the core. The show is full of twists and turns, and it takes some big risks (some that don’t always pay off) that seem almost too crazy to be possible.
The cast is excellent, and while some of the stories tend to wind up in no man’s land, the idea of these characters seeking more and more power in a corrupt Washington as they run roughshod over America and anyone who stands in their way is just too interesting an idea in today’s current political landscape; not to think things are plausible. You don’t have to be into politics to enjoy it either. It’s binge-worthy enough as a drama that has American politics thrown in. It actually might be better if you’re not into politics. It allows you to overlook a few things that political enthusiasts won’t.
3. Nauseating: Girl Boss
If you wanted to produce a show that was both known for its completely awful timing and bad writing, you’d have to put Girl Boss right at the top of your list. Meant to be a story loosely based on Nasty Gal founder Sophia Amoruso, the show is supposed to document the struggle of a young female entrepreneur as she runs one of the fastest-growing companies in America, only the company went bankrupt in real life. Netflix was producing the show while the company Nasty Gal was still a big deal. Then, it flopped which made the show kind of pointless.
Clearly, Amoruso cost herself millions in real life, and her character in the show was extremely unlikable. The kicker as to how this show got canceled was because the heads at Netflix asked why nobody was watching it. Once they realized their mistake, they nipped it in the bud. Trying to convince the viewers to root for a smart and edgy young lead character who wasn’t smart or edgy made it a terrible show that got canceled after one nauseating season.
2. Nauseating: Gilmore Girls: A Year In The Life
Like Fuller House and Arrested Development, this show just doesn’t do justice to the old version of the program that so many people loved. It’s too bad, too, because we were really hoping a rebooted show that would finally hit a home run. It might be the closest, but it’s not quite there.
While it’s nice to see these characters back, the show feels like it was made only for the old viewers of the original Gilmore Girls, and it includes old and outdated jokes and ideas that seem to be set for a different time. The fact that the show is 90 minutes also makes it feel long. In the end, if you’re looking for a chance to revisit some of what you missed when the show ended, you’ll get that back. If you want a show that is anything more than revisiting old characters, this is not that show.
1. Great: Orange Is The New Black
Like a number of shows, Orange is the New Black doesn’t quite have the bite it once did, but the show is still incredibly well-written and full of fantastic female actors who make you cheer for people who constantly make mistakes. Season 5 is a bit messy but still interesting enough to keep you watching, and it does eventually come together.
The series focuses on female prison inmates who are trying to simply survive and be human. Still one of Netflix’s most unique shows, it’s held the title as the most popular show on the platform for a long time. It doesn’t try to be more than it should and, at the end of the day, is just a story about what it means to be constantly reminded of your surroundings and making the most out of a very bleak future. The show keeps you entertained and laughing, and it makes you ponder the question, this can’t really be what a women’s prison is like, can it?
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