Last Updated: August 5th
There’s no shortage of prestige TV series on Netflix, but sometimes, you just need a good guilty pleasure binge-watch.
That’s where these shows come in. Each of the entries on this list packs on the drama, navigating the high-stakes world of politics, the even more cutthroat halls of high school, and giving us characters so eccentric, so over-the-top, you can’t help but love them. Or, love to hate them. We tune into these stories for their entertainment value, to be mesmerized by the melodrama, to enjoy all the juicy gossip, shocking betrayal, and eye-rolling cat fights that come with them.
These are the best guilty pleasures on Netflix right now.
1 season, 10 episodes | IMDb: 6.4/10
Renee Zellweger turns on the melodrama for this 10-episode anthology series about a San Francisco billionaire and the young scientist whose company she funds. Zellweger plays Anne Montgomery, a high-profile member of San Francisco’s elite upper class. She has plenty of money and the attitude to back it up. Jane Levy plays a wunderkind named Lisa, whose promising medical company is broke and needs a helping hand from Anne, who agrees, but her money comes with a price. If daytime soaps are your thing, you’ll probably love this one.
3 seasons, 57 episodes | IMDb: 7.4/10
Riverdale is a dark teen comedy based on characters from the Archie comics. It mixes in elements of a conventional teen drama — romance, small-town life, and the high-school ecosystem — with a compelling, adult murder mystery. The series takes place in a small-town with a 1950s vibe (despite being firmly set in the present) where a high-school teenager is found dead under mysterious circumstances that implicate much of the community as suspects. Riverdale is powered not just by the mystery, but by characters who are instantly likable (Betty, Veronica, and Jughead are all standouts) and is easy to invest in. The mystery is so incredibly intriguing that it’s almost impossible not to get wrapped up in it as the storyline guides us through numerous red herrings. It’s a madly addictive series, occasionally campy, and just self-aware enough not to take itself too seriously.