The best Netflix shows to binge right now

By Jennifer Smith | Reporter

I had become accustomed to mindlessly scrolling through my news feed while something I’ve seen five-thousand times plays on Netflix in the background. I fall into the trap that is the “continue watching,” category and find myself quoting whichever “Gossip Girl” or “Friends” episode I left off at. So, in a desperate attempt to shake up my precious free time, I boldly went where no habitual show-watcher goes — the “New Release” category.

I started dabbling in different shows, and I covered most of the entertaining, mysterious, thrilling and feel-good shows Netflix has to offer. After thinning out the painfully horrible chick-flicks and melodramatic sitcoms, these are the shows I found to be truly interesting.

If you’re looking for a suspenseful thriller that will keep you on your toes then look no further than the Netflix original, “Ozark.” When a family gets mixed up with the cartel, they have to come together and find the will to survive in their situation. The show stars Jason Bateman; as always, he does a great job of playing the cynical, level-headed leading character. I was not only blown away by the show’s crazy, yet believable storyline, but also by the incredible cast and their acting abilities. Get ready to jump, gasp and become addicted to this one-season series.

As fall slowly takes its time to creep around the corner this year, my go-to gloomy day series is “Cold Justice: Sex Crimes.” I know the title can be intimidating, but this series is truly touching. Two prosecuting attorneys re-open sexual assault cold cases and stop at nothing to find justice for the victims. These women do an amazing job of presenting the facts, while also emotionally connecting to the people they’re working with. Each episode is packed with twists and turns as they uncover new evidence, suspects and possibilities to the cases they are solving. Each episode is fast-paced and based on a new case, which I found was more entertaining than a long documentary crime series, such as “Making A Murder.” So, if you’re like me and love all things true-crime related, give “Cold Justice: Sex Crimes” a chance and watch two incredible women on the hunt for justice.

If those shows seem too heavy for a nice relaxing Netflix sesh, then try out the new feel-good show, “The Good Place.” In this light-hearted show, the hilarious Kristen Bell is sent to the “good place,” or Heaven, by accident after her death. Her presence throws things off balance in the good place, and she has to figure out a way to keep her accidental arrival a secret or else she’ll be sent to the “bad place” where she belongs. This show is flat-out hilarious. The writing is quirky and fun, but the way Kristen Bell delivers her lines had me laughing at every scene. This show tackles the sacred concept of heaven and hell in a funny, modern way. If you’re looking for a feel-good show to lighten your spirits you won’t regret watching, “The Good Place.”

Other shows that significantly stood out to me for being entertaining include “The Confession Tapes,” a true-crime serious, “Gypsy”, a thrilling series about a woman’s double life, and “Gage: Five Foot Two,” an artistic documentary about Lady Gaga’s artistic processes, struggles and mega-star life.

The next time you take a personal day or finally finish that test you’ve been studying for all week, unwind with these entertaining and mind-stimulating shows.