6 alternative but essential things to jump into on Netflix

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There’s one thing all Netflix users have in common, which is when we pop it on there’s approximately a 30 to 40 minute period of scrolling through all the films and shows we are interested in but not in the mood for. Sometimes we give up and switch the TV back on or simply go to bed in an agitated rage at not knowing what to watch.

So next time you’re about to put Netflix on, consider the following to simply play. You won’t regret it, trust me.

1. The Trip

Everyone knows Steve Coogan from Alan Partridge and Rob Brydon from his place in British comedy but the low-key series of the two of them travelling from hotel to hotel sampling food is something that works brilliantly well. Superbly written and ad-libbed it combines the mundane nature of two middle-aged men eating fancy food while doing a tonne of stellar impressions. There’s something so soothing about what they’re doing. Honest.

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Credit: BBC Productions

2. Rick and Morty

It’s only just come to Netflix but the thing with this show is it’s great for picking up odd episodes here and there and you’re instantly able to engage with its playful and extremely funny setup. Sort of in the same way you can dive in and out of shows like Futurama, which is obviously a very handy option to fill that void.

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Credit: Harmonius Claptrap

3. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia

This one’s been around for a while - there’s 11 goddamn seasons, so you’ve plenty to catch up on - but it’s still one of those shows, a bit like Arrested Development circa 2005, that’s amazingly well put together but not particularly well-known amongst the mainstream. Admittedly you’ll not want to jump between seasons but it’s the type of show you can watch in any order (within reason) and get the most out of. 20 minutes is nothing, so, like some of its core characters, is a no-brainier.

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Credit: Bluebush Productions

4. The Invitation

Yes, this may be a film but it’s on Netflix and I felt it was worthy enough to be added here as an alternative streaming experience. A sort of horror-mystery-drama as a group of estranged friends have a good, old get-together. There’s tension and a twisty, paranoid narrative that beats choosing between Transformers: Age of Extinction and The Ridiculous 6, at least.

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Credit: XYZ Films

5. Better Call Saul

If you’ve seen (and loved) Breaking Bad there’s no excuse not to be involved with this refreshing spin-off based around dodgy lawyer Saul Goodman - or Jimmy McGill as he’s original known. A much more subtle drama than Bryan Cranston’s exploits as Walter White, this is a charming, endearing and cleverly written series that’s really easy to watch. It’s currently awaiting its third season, so don’t delay.

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Credit: Netflix

6. Planet Earth

This one’s so easy to jump into not only because it’s presented by the absolute legend that is David Attenborough, but due to the sheer beauty and wonder it beholds. It can serve as an informative, educational trip whilst also being one of the most relaxing ways to spend your time on Netflix.

N.B. In case you end up whizzing through this, there’s also Africa, Blue Planet, Life, and many more fascinating shows from the great man himself.

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Credit: BBC Productions

Do you have go-to Netflix shows or films that’re easy to jump in and out of and chill out to? Share your comments below…

Mike P Williams is a freelance TV, film, music and entertainment writer, with an unhealthy obsession for Game of Thrones. Over the years he’s written for MTV, Total Film, BuzzFeed, GoThinkBig, HexJam, Loaded, and regularly scribbles for Yahoo Movies and BBC Radio 1.

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