Earlier this week, Netflix announced that it had brokered a deal with Warner Brothers television to add eight television series to Netflix Instant, including The West Wing, Fringe and Arrow. While researching the piece I wrote on that, I had forgotten just how rich the WB’s television catalogue is, and what a shame it is that more of their titles — old and current — aren’t available on Netflix. I’m hoping that the deal is just the beginning, because there’s a number of television shows that deserve the kind of cult audiences that Netflix can increasingly bring to them, that deserve to be discovered, and rediscovered, and that deserve to be shared with a wider audience.
Among those titles, these are the ten that should be added to Netflix first: They are the best, the most marathon-worthy, and addictive, which makes them perfect for the streaming service. Make it happen, Netflix.
Pushing Daisies (22 episodes) — There are actually three Bryan Fuller series all worth Netflix marathoning, all excellent shows, and all cancelled to soon. Pushing Daisies is the most notable of the three (though, Dead Like Me is the best). Pushing Daisies is perfect if you’re in a whimsical, pie-eating mood, although if you’re allergic to quirk, the series may trigger violent dry-heaves. The series’ bright colors, however, do wonders for Anna Friel, who inspired a lot of girl crushes between 2007 and 2009.
The O.C. (92 episodes) — How is it even possible that this series isn’t on Netflix. But for the length of the series (it’s four seasons long), it’d be a perfect show to marathon, and it’s still an idea series to watch over the course of the summer, grabbing an episode or two a day. It’s candy: Delicious, post-modern, overly melodramatic candy fully of gorgeous actors, lightweight soap-y plotlines, amazing eyebrows, and satisfying fish-out-of-water comeuppance. Be warned, however: Oliver is the worst.
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (22 episodes) — Aaron Sorkin’s follow-up to The West Wing gets a bad rap, as it was crushed under overly high expectations. Yes, the sketch show within the show is terrible, but the pilot is literally one of the best episodes of television in the last decade, and even though the series can be ham-fisted, high-minded, overly moralizing, and self-righteous, it has a great cast with a lot of excellent chemistry. It does not fare well when compared to The West Wing and Sports Night, but up against The Newsroom, Studio 60 stacks up well as a guilty pleasure with some intelligent ideas and commentary.