The 25 best TV shows on Netflix (February 2018)

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It's the age old question: What shall we watch on Netflix tonight? Well, not that old perhaps, but still... it's an important question. There's so many fantastic TV shows on Netflix that it can feel a little overwhelming at times. Especially when EVERYONE is talking about the hot new series you haven't got around to watching yet! It's ok... shhh... calm down... step away from the never-ending Netflix carousel and take a look at our list of the best TV shows on Netflix in Februrary instead. 

It's super easy to follow with specific sections on which seasons are available in which regions, AND it includes not just great new series like Penny Dreadful and Crazyhead, but the best shows on Netflix full stop. There's a healthy mixture of recent (and not so recent) must-watch Netflix Originals, like Dark and Daredevil, as well as iconic series you might have missed, which have made it onto the streaming service, such as Breaking Bad and Friends. Basically, you're weekend starts here and it's looking goooooooood. 

25. Crazyhead

Region: Worldwide

Season(s): 1

The show: Tagged as the British Buffy, it is one of the very best shows on Netflix that you’ve never seen and there’s one joyous season to binge right now. From Misfits creator Howard Overman, the show balances both the ass-kickery and humour of Buffy, repackaging it into a UK-set fantasy. The story follows Amy, a bowling alley worker, who discovers she’s also a “seer” - someone who can see monsters and demons. After getting attacked by a beastie, she’s rescued by another seer, who takes Amy under her wing.

Why it’s worth watching: Notching up excellent reviews and a loyal audience doesn’t just happen. This is top quality genre TV that spins out into a space left by Buffy and barely filled by Supernatural. Alas, as Firefly fans know, quality alone doesn’t guarantee an epic run, and that’s the case with Crazyhead as the show was cancelled after one season. Maybe if we get enough folks tuning in on the streaming service, Netflix will give it a second season? 

24. Altered Carbon 

Region: UK, US

Season(s): 1

The show: The cyberpunk trappings of the late ‘90s are back, and feister than ever, albeit with fewer trenchcoats and long-winded monologues from Laurence Fishburne. Altered Carbon throws us into a dark, gloomy future, where people no longer inhabit bodies but ‘Sleeves’. And your mind? Yeah, that lives inside a ‘Stack’, a device attached to the back of your neck. The action kicks off when Takeshi Kovacs, the sole survivor of an uprising 250 years prior, wakes to find himself given a unique opportunity: stay behind bars or solve a murder.

Why it’s worth watching: It might not be hard sci-fi at its very best, but it’s definitely worth a watch. Utterly gorgeous in terms of production value, but a little contentious in terms of story quality. It’s something you need to watch and discuss, especially if you dig the retrofuturist grime of Blade Runner.

Read more: 10 questions I have after watching Altered Carbon

23. The Crown

Region: Worldwide

Season(s): 1-2

The show: Loosely based on the 2006 Helen Mirren flick, The Crown charts the life of Queen Elizabeth II from the start of her reign up until the present day. This Netflix Original weds top notch drama with an array of great performances, lead by Claire Foy as the young monarch. It sheds light on unseen parts of the Queen’s duties, and the troubled dynamic of juggling a public and private life. 

Why it’s worth watching: The early years of the current English monarch? Sounds great, but not for you, right? Bit too Downton? Seriously, don’t miss out on some of the best TV of last year: this is a superb character drama that packs in loads of historical factoids and a rollicking good story.

22. Friends

Region: UK, US

Season(s): 1-10

The show: The one where all the twentysomethings can afford spacious Manhattan apartments. Yes, I’m talking about Friends! Upon its debut in 1994 the show became an instant hit, and even now some 14 years after its finale aired, it is still considered one of the most popular sitcoms of all time. It’s hard to disagree, really, as the series continues to get better with age, following the lives of Monica, Rachel, Phoebe, Ross, Joey, and Chandler as they navigate through good times and bad. Oh, and numerous Thanksgiving mishaps, of course.

Why it’s worth watching: This is great feelgood TV, that performs so well and stands up to repeat viewings because the main cast is just so darn likeable. From the first episode, each of the six leads carves out a unique spot in the show without coming across like caricatures. Sure, Ross may get a tad whiny in later seasons, but hey, he’s been through a lot. They were on a break, right?

Read more: The 25 best Friends TV episodes ever (because we know you’re watching on Netflix. Yes, even YOU)

21. The Frankenstein Chronicles

Region: UK, US

Season(s): 1 (UK), 1-2 (US)

The show: Having debuted in the UK on the ITV Encore network, The Frankenstein Chronicles now arrives on Netflix ready to become your new favourite show of the year. Creators Benjamin Ross and Barry Langford have sculpted a fresh take on Frankenstein lore, that’s more of a vague reimagining of Mary Shelley’s novel than a direct reboot. Sean Bean stars as John Marlott, a cop who discovers a child’s body that later turns out to be several bodies stitched together. You know, ‘cause it’s Frankenstein!

Why it’s worth watching: Sean “Ned Stark” Bean stars as a troubled cop. That should be sufficient enough! The fact is, this series mixes us multiple styles into one thoroughly entertaining package. It’s a hearty dose of sci-fi telly, a period piece, and a crime procedural to boot, all with oodles of name-dropping (Dracula gets a mention!).

20. Luke Cage

Region: Worldwide

Season(s): 1

The show: Netflix's Marvel universe kicked off with the likes of Daredevil and Jessica Jones, but then came Luke Cage. We met the bulletproof hero back in JJ season 1, and here he is taking charge down in Harlem, as he comes under attack from a vicious gangster Cornell 'Cottonmouth' Stokes and his even more duplicitous cousin Mariah Dillard.  

Why it's worth watching: More than a superhero series, this is a show in harmony with the Harlem community. Producers brought in a slew of talented African-American actors, pulled together a sublime soundtrack (seriously, the theme? Yeah, might not seem much at first but you'll be humming it soon), and really let rip. It's in a league of its own. Plus, season 2 is coming soon. 

Read more: 21 Luke Cage Easter eggs you might have missed (including a Back to the Future nod)

19. Sense8

Region: Worldwide

Season(s): 1-2

The show: After dallying with sci-fi on and off for their entire cinematic career, The Wachowskis take their vision to the small screen with Netflix Original Sense8. Plucking ideas from sci-fi canon to tell a sprawling story, with a dash of Heroes, a drop of Lost, and a whole heap of WTF, the story follows eight people, from different locations across the globe, who suddenly find themselves telepathically connected. Skills, experiences, thoughts, are all shared between the group, who come to depend on that vast pool of resources because, naturally, they’re being hunted by a shady organisation. 

Why it’s worth watching: This series was missed by most upon its initial release, but its die-hard fans love it so much they demanded a proper finale after the show was axed post-season 2. The two-part conclusion is set to air later this year, so if you haven't seen it yet, now is the time to catch up. 

18. The Walking Dead

Region: US

Season(s): 1-7

The show: AMC's adaptation of Robert Kirkman's zombie comic has propelled to the top of every TV fan's must-watch list during its many, many seasons. At times The Walking Dead is a bloodthirsty horror epic, at others a harrowing survivalist drama, but whatever you call it, it's easy, enjoyable viewing for zombie enthusiasts. The adventures of Rick Grimes and his band of friends as they make their way through a post-apocalyptic America is gripping stuff - despite the somewhat meandering elements of its most recent seasons.

Why it's worth watching: With every season the stakes are raised and at least one fan favourite character dies - there's no escaping the wrath of the biters... or the villainous humans! With the second part of season 8 due to return to our screens soon, you better get cracking if you're not up to date. 

Read more: The Walking Dead season 8 recap: Catch up with the new season before it starts again

17. Penny Dreadful

Region: US

Season(s): 1-3

The show: The seedy, dark backalleys of Victorian London are the backdrop for Penny Dreadful, an equally seedy, dark series featuring a roster of well-known literary figures. While 19th century icons such as Victor Frankenstein and Dorian Grey star, make no mistake: this isn’t a quaint old-school drama. This is a heart-pounding thriller, that enlists a bunch of original characters for what begins as a missing persons case. Adventurer Sir Malcolm Murray and his aide, the psychic Vanessa Ives, recruit Dr. Frankenstein to help locate Murray’s missing daughter Mina, and from thereon things take a decidedly macabre turn.

Why it’s worth watching: This is crossover TV to die for. Sure, the superhero genre, and in particular, Marvel and The CW, have made that style their own, but who’s to say it can’t work elsewhere? Penny Dreadful masters the crossover in a wholly unique way, bringing a multitude of gothic characters together.

Read more: Why we didn’t actually deserve Penny Dreadful

16. GLOW

Region: Worldwide

Season(s): 1

The show: The grunts as bare skin slaps onto the canvas, jeers and brouhaha from the over-excited crowd, and simply divine outfits... welcome to the world of GLOW! Another Netflix Original that’s ripe for bingeing, you’ll dig it whether wrestling is your thing or not. Because, really, it’s about the women involved in this true story and how they face the obstacles life has thrown their way. Alison Brie leads the pack as Ruth, an out-of-work actress who's made some questionable choices. The women are led by Marc Maron’s drole, chain-smoking producer, who cajoles performances out of them in the hopes of making some serious cash. Come for the costumes, stay for the witty repartee.

Why it’s worth watching: For a show that’s based on wrestling, the main heft of what’s so enjoyable isn’t about the sport at all, but the circumstances of these women. Ruth and Debbie’s dynamic in particular is electric. Well, what would you expect with alter-ego names like Zoya the Destroyer and Liberty Belle?

Read more: Why GLOW is the greatest TV show about wrestling (that’s not really about wrestling)