1) “The Killing” (all seasons available August 1st)
Why Should I Watch It? Honestly? Because it’s on Netflix. After surviving more threats to its survival than the victims it follows, “The Killing” has again fought through to another new season and thusly deserves your attention on long, lazy Saturdays. Be wary of watching Seasons 1 and 3 at night the day — they can get a little spooky — but make sure you catch up before diving into Netflix’s new season, because you’ll need a little background on Mulder and Scully– Whoops. I meant Holder and Linden.
Best Episode: Season 1, without the disappointing final episode, is probably the best section of “The Killing,” and now you can watch all of AMC’s cops-and-killers series without the letdown many audiences experience while watching it live. Season 2 is just a click away instead of a year, so any (misconstrued) expectations of learning who killed Rose Larson won’t be attached to one episode. You’ll find out. Just keep binging.
READ MORE: Will Arnett and Aaron Paul Ask Deep Questions in New ‘Bojack Horseman’ Trailer
2) “Bojack Horseman” (Season 1 available August 22nd)
Why Should I Watch It? Well, we don’t really know yet. Another Netflix Original series launching this month, “Bojack Horseman” enlists the oft-utilized vocal talents of Will Arnett and the fan-friendly personality of Aaron Paul to draw in more subscribers. Add to that list the voices of Amy Sedaris, Alison Brie, and Paul F. Tompkins, and you’ve got one of the better ensembles out there. Oh, and then there’s this website. Seriously. If whoever created the website also works on the show, it will be one of the all time great animated adult comedies.
Best Episode: Um, gee. That’s tough. Maybe…the website? I mean, hopefully one of the 13 upcoming 30-minute episodes will top this homage to the oh-so-great ’90s webpage designs, but it will be tough.
3) “Parenthood” (Season 5 available August 25th)
Why Should I Watch It? “Parenthood” is from showrunner/executive producer Jason Katims. Jason Katims was the showrunner/executive producer for “Friday Night Lights.” “Friday Night Lights” is the best television series ever made. Therefore, if you apply the transitive property, you should all be watching “Parenthood.” (It’s not quite as good as that intricate drama of small town living in Dillon, TX, but it’s deserving of its all-star cast, and well worth your time.)
Best Episode: “You’ve Got Mold.” As always, there are plenty of story lines being worked out throughout the 22-episode season of NBC’s hour-long family drama. Jasmine (Joy Bryant) and Crosby (Dax Shepard) have a new baby. Kristina (Monica Potter) runs for Mayor. Sarah (Lauren Graham) and her offspring make exceedingly poor life choices (aren’t they the worst?). But what defines Season 5 is Julia (Erika Christensen) and Joel’s (Sam Jaeger) very realistic separation. It’s crushing for everyone involved, and the writers don’t let up on the difficulties surrounding it. There’s no easy bridge back, but in “You’ve Got Mold,” viewers are reminded neither members of the couple have changed. It’s a heartwarming episode with a consistent track of laughter running in parallel. Enjoy.
4) “Cosmos: A Space Time Odyssey” (Season 1 available August 7th)
Why Should I Watch It? So you can learn something, you lazy oaf! Binging on Netflix doesn’t have to mean shutting down your mind, and FOX’s reimagining of the classic science series was met with mostly high praise upon its rollout. Give it a go. See what you can pick up.
Best Episode: “Standing Up in the Milky Way.” It may seem like a cheat to choose the pilot episode, but it’s not only the best episode of the series — it’s integral to enjoying the rest of it. The information isn’t what’s pertinent here, like it is in many pilots where exposition is laid out in chunks larger than the galaxy surrounding us. It’s the formatting. “COSMOS: A Space Time Odyssey” picks up where its predecessor left off and features a few updates to Carl Sagan’s versions while sticking with its main mission. Education first, entertainment second. Though don’t think No. 2 is that far behind.
5) “Revenge” (Season 3 available August 29th)
Why Should I Watch It? If you’re looking for a guilty pleasure on this list, look no further. “Revenge” is essentially the opposite of “COSMOS,” offering very little benefits to the mind and plenty of voluptuous bodies to ogle. Make your own choices, of course, but be warned: it’s hard to stop plotting once you start.
Best Episode: “Execution.” To be fair, we’re not entirely caught up on “Revenge,” but how could its best episode not be its last? All night time soaps are built to have a killer season finale, and “Revenge” certainly has a history of surprising when it comes to its closers. Don’t take this as a reason to sit through anything you don’t want to — Season 4 may be complete garbage — but we’re guessing it won’t disappoint anyone involved enough to get that far.
Other TV Titles Coming to Netflix:
“Haven” (Season 4) – August 12th
“Low Winter Sun” (Season 1/Entire Series) – August 12th
“Once Upon a Time” (Season 3) – August 29th