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The Best Netflix Original Series and Movies of 2019 So Far

The streaming service has already put out a ton of fun shows and films

Amanda Bell
Stranger Things 3
1 of 36 Netflix

Stranger Things 3

The Duffer Brothers' homage to the '80s continued to impress in its third season, as the Hawkins kids faced an even bigger and more disgusting Upside Down monster -- and explored the Starcourt Mall. With even more throwback references, higher stakes for the heroes, and a whole lot more fun, the new season proved that the show still has some surprises in store for fans.

2 of 36 Netflix

Russian Doll (Season 1)

Natasha Lyonne's turn as a whip-smart, foul-mouthed woman stuck in a time loop in Russian Doll is endlessly watchable. We're ready to see so much more of her life ... and deaths. (Good news: The show has been renewed for a second season.)

3 of 36 Netflix

When They See Us

Ava DuVernay's celebrated miniseries about the Central Park Five, a group of young men who were wrongly incarcerated, is necessary viewing. The show earned several Emmy nominations and has become one of Netflix's most-watched series.

4 of 36 Netflix

Homecoming: A Film by Beyonce

The power of Beyonce's vision and her ability to execute it on stage can never be understated, and that was especially clear when she decided to lift the veil on her process of creating that groundbreaking 2018 Coachella headline show with her raw and still consummately professional documentary, Homecoming.

5 of 36 Ed Araquel / Netflix

Always Be My Maybe

The breakthrough rom-com of the year (so far), Ali Wong and Randall Park's hilarious adventure as a pair of childhood friends who reconnect in adulthood is exactly the kind of rewatchable, meme-able comedy that we needed for the summer. Always Be My Maybe is nothing short of a must-watch for fans of the genre

6 of 36 Netflix

Dead To Me (Season 1)

Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini take fans on a roller coaster (or, perhaps more appropriately, balloon ride) of emotions in Dead to Me as they navigate the stages of grief with lots of delicious twists along the way. It's a good thing the series has been renewed for a second season because the first left us yearning for more.

7 of 36 Netflix

FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened

Despite becoming the subject of an unexpected streaming war with Hulu, Netflix's documentary about the spectacular disaster that was the Fyre Festival still manages to stand out, thanks in no small part to its memorable guests like the oral sex guy and Maryann Rolle, the restaurant owner whose story of loss has inspired audiences to crowdfund her recovery.

8 of 36 Netflix

Sex Education (Season 1)

This feel-good series centers on Otis (Asa Butterfield), the uptight son of a sex therapist (Gillian Anderson), who uses his unique insights to help others at his school. Sex Education's brutal honesty about the coming-of-age process hasn't gone unnoticed, and the show has been renewed for a second season.

9 of 36 Gisle Sverdrup/Silverback/Netflix

Our Planet (Season 1)

Perhaps the most essential viewing of the year, Our Planet showcases, with stunning and often heartbreaking imagery, just how precious the planet is -- and how badly humankind is treating it.

10 of 36 Netflix

Trigger Warning with Killer Mike

Killer Mike, rapper and all around smart guy, is starring in his first docuseries -- and it's incredibly fun! The show features him challenging himself to do things like go three days using only goods from black-owned businesses, learning carpentry and creating a Crip-branded cola. It's a good time and features some eye-opening positivity.

11 of 36 Netflix

Tuca & Bertie (Season 1)

Ali Wong's very good year continued with Tuca & Bertie, an adult animated series that features her alongside Tiffany Haddish as a pair of pals navigating their lives as thirtysomethings who also happen to be birds. The series was tragically canceled after only one season.

12 of 36 Netflix

Tidying Up with Marie Kondo (Season 1)

The famed lifestyle author Marie Kondo brings her KonMari method to American homes as she teaches others how to declutter in Tidying Up with Marie Kondo. Kondo has already had a big pop culture impact as she teaches audiences to let go of things that don't spark joy.

13 of 36 Netflix

The Society (Season 1)

Netflix has finally found its YA sensation in The Society, a dystopian thriller series centered on a group of teens left to govern themselves when they're dropped off in an empty facsimile of their town, leaving them no way to contact the outside world.

14 of 36 Netflix

One Day at a Time (Season 3)

The Alvarez family's story is just as spirited and uplifting as ever in One Day at a Time's third season. This show has a solid formula, and it knows how to stick to it. Even though Netflix canceled the series, fans will still get to see more as the show moves to a new home on PopTV.

15 of 36 Elizabeth Sisson/Netflix

Amy Schumer Growing

The comedian got very personal in her latest stand-up special, offering insight into her marriage and then-pending motherhood, but she still sprinkled in some of her signature vulgarity to keep the laughs rolling.

16 of 36 Lara Solanki/Netflix

I Think You Should Leave

Tim Robinson's sketch comedy series I Think You Should Leave has been rightly celebrated for its laugh-out-loud gags.

17 of 36 Netflix

Lucifer (Season 4)

Lucifer's resurrection at Netflix proved to be a sinfully good decision with this new season, which left us burning for more (which we'll get now that it's been renewed for one final run).

18 of 36 Netflix

I Am Mother

This sci-fi original film will keep audiences guessing right up to its end -- and then far beyond that. The story of I Am Mother centers on a girl named Daughter who has been raised by an android named Mother, who has been charged with repopulating the human species. When a mysterious woman shows up at their bunker, though, things get very, very complicated.

19 of 36 Netflix

Blown Away (Season 1)

Who knew a relatively drama-free series about glassblowers could be this compelling? By pulling away from the reality genre's usual manufactured drama, this quick competition series puts the artists and their craftsmanship front and center, resulting in a very warm little binge.

20 of 36 Netflix

Dark (Season 2)

The new season of Dark continued to confuse with its twisty timeline and complicated family tree, but the story remained just as compelling as it was in the first season -- perhaps even more so.

21 of 36 Netflix

The Umbrella Academy (Season 1)

Based on Gerard Way's comic series, The Umbrella Academy focuses on a group of superheroes who, after being mysteriously born to women who had not been pregnant the day before, were adopted by a billionaire industrialist with the hopes that they might one day save the world. The adaptation -- which is complete with one energetic dance montage -- leaves us ready for more.

22 of 36 Netflix / Eike Schroter

A Series of Unfortunate Events (Season 3)

The third and final season of A Series of Unfortunate Events, Netflix's gloomy adaptation of the Lemony Snicket books, finally brings some closure to the Baudelaire siblings' story.

23 of 36 Saeed Adyani / Netflix

Santa Clarita Diet (Season 3)

It's a shame that Santa Clarita Diet won't be back for a fourth season, because things really started to get good in the show's third outing.

24 of 36 Netflix

Big Mouth: My Furry Valentine

Big Mouth's holiday-themed deep dive into the awkwardness of Valentine's Day offers exactly the same kind of vulgar fun fans have come (pun!) to expect after the show's first two seasons.

25 of 36 Ali Goldstein / Netflix

Grace and Frankie (Season 5)

The incomparable Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda return to their celebrated roles as the jilted ex-wives of two men who've decided to make their affair official -- only this time, the ladies work to get their old lives back. There are no signs of this power pair slowing down, either, as a sixth season of Grace and Frankie is still ahead.

26 of 36 Netflix

Knock Down the House

Centering on some of the biggest breakthroughs of the 2018 congressional election cycle, Knock Down the House offers a stunning glimpse at what went into bringing four determined women to Washington.

27 of 36 Peter Andrews/Netflix

High Flying Bird

Steven Soderbergh's basketball drama has a high-scoring cast (including André Holland and Zazie Beetz) and a bustling script that makes an important point about the values of the players who make the game possible.

28 of 36 Netflix

The OA: Part II

This existential sci-fi/fantasy series continued to embrace its utter weirdness in the second season, jettisoning its reluctant heroine into an all-new dimension where many of her old problems still awaited her. We sure do hope Brit Marling gets the chance to finish this saga, especially given that amazingly bonkers ending.

29 of 36 Netflix

Love, Death, & Robots (Season 1)

This anthology series of animated shorts is not safe for work or kids, but there are a few essential episodes that stand out and make the series worth watching.

30 of 36 Netflix

Rilakkuma and Kaoru (Season 1)

This cozy animated series features a woman living with a trio of actual teddy bears that comfort her as she faces the trials of being a twentysomething.

31 of 36 JUHAN NOH/Netflix

Kingdom (Season 1)

This Korean series, featuring a beleaguered crown prince who must fight plague-monsters to save his people and his reputation, is a refreshing reinvention of the ailing zombie subgenre.

32 of 36 Netflix

Larry Charles' Dangerous World of Comedy

This documentary series explores the work of comedians across the globe, including those in unexpected or dangerous places, as they try to bring laughter to people in the most need of it.

33 of 36 Netflix

Queer Eye (Season 3)

The Fab Five took their feel-good makeover spree to Kansas City, Mo., to help some new "heroes" glam up their lives in Season 3, including a young black lesbian who was in search of her place in the world and a grieving father who was trying to make the best home he could for his child after the loss of his wife.

34 of 36 Netflix

Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes

The chilling four-part docuseries revisits the twisted mind of the serial killer. Using audio evidence and exclusive interviews, Conversations With a Killer details both the killings and the media frenzy surrounding Ted Bundy's crimes, and it's all just as eerie and revolting as you'd expect it to be.

35 of 36 Netflix

The Breaker Upperers

This New Zealand comedy film about two women setting up a breakup agency breathes zany new life into the buddy comedy genre.

36 of 36 Netflix

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Season 4, Part 2)

The oh-so-cheery Kimmy Schmidt (Ellie Kemper) gets one last dance in this final stretch of the series, and while it all wraps up a little too neatly, it's still a must-see for fans of the effervescent title character.