Netflix, founded in 1997, originally made money by sending people DVDs in the mail. Broadband access in homes allowed it to migrate its business to streaming video in 2007. The change was so successful that within less than a decade, it began to produce its own movies to entice new subscribers and then encourage them to renew their subscriptions. It currently has a production budget that rivals that of traditional studios. The business model has helped lift its paid subscriber level to 220 million worldwide. Its growth has helped launch competitors from the likes of Amazon, Apple and Disney.
The streaming industry as a whole grew substantially because of the COVID-19 pandemic. People who could not go out to watch movies in theaters had to watch films in their homes.
To determine the best Netflix original series, 24/7 Tempo reviewed audience user ratings on IMDb, an online movie database owned by Amazon, as of December 2021. Only English-language series with at least 15,000 user reviews were considered. In the case of a tie, the series with more IMDb user ratings was ranked higher. Supplemental data on premiere date, season count, episode count and cast information also came from IMDb.
There is a rich variety of candidates. These include gripping drug-cartel-themed thrillers such as “Ozark” and “Narcos,” which have run for multiple seasons. Humorous animated programs like “BoJack Horseman” and “Big Mouth” feature the talents of Will Arnett and Nick Kroll, respectively. Offbeat fare is represented by such series as “GLOW,” an acronym for the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, about female wrestlers in Los Angeles.
If your taste runs toward black comedy, there is “Dead to Me,” pairing Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini, and “After Life,” starring British comedian Ricky Gervais. Perhaps the crown jewel among the Netflix series is “The Crown,” tracing Queen Elizabeth’s tenure as the British sovereign. It has won 21 Emmys out of 63 nominations.
The best original Netflix original series is “Narcos.” Here are the details:
- IMDb user rating: 8.8/10
- IMDb user reviews: 389,837 votes
- Original series run: 2015 to 2017 (three seasons, 30 episodes)
- Cast: Pedro Pascal, Lizbeth Eden, Wagner Moura, Boyd Holbrook
“Narcos” traces the rise of the drug kingpin Pablo Escobar and the Colombian drug cartels, their ability to corrupt society’s institutions and the inability of law enforcement to stop them. The series holds a 95% audience score on Rotten Tomatoes.
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