The Finest Drama Exhibits on Netflix (November 2020)

Sometimes all you need is a gripping drama, and thankfully Netflix delivers. From what are now TV classics (like breaking Bad) to Peak TV Jewels (Hap and Leonard, Mindhunter), Netflix is ​​home to some of the most beautifully designed and responsive televisions of our time.

Over the next few weeks, we'll be posting more lists of TV subgenres on the streaming giant, including the Best Crime Series, Best Fantasy, Best TV Comedies, Best Horror Series, and more. If you don't see your favorites here, keep checking them! For a full list of all the TV deals recommended by Netflix, see our main list of the best TV shows on Netflix.

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This list will keep growing, but for now, be sure to check out our list of the best drama shows on Netflix and let us know some of your other favorites in the comments:

The Queen's Gambit


Image via Netflix

Created by: Scott Frank

Occupation: Anya Taylor-Joy, Marielle Heller, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, Harry Melling, Bill Camp and Moses Ingram

You don't have to be interested in chess to fall for the seven-episode limited series The Queen's Gambitbecause at its core the show is not about chess at all. It is an extremely dramatic story about a young orphan who works through her trauma to find some semblance of joy wherever she can, and about the people she meets along the way. Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch) is a revelation in the lead role of Beth Harmon, a young chess prodigy who gives the character a cool confidence while capturing the nuances of their emotional complexity. Scott Frankwho writes and directs each episode, brings the 1950s and 60s to life in a vibrant way, with stunning production design and beautiful costumes, but it's the way he captures the chess games that really take this thing up. They're exciting and engaging, not because of the specific moves, but because the show does such a great job that you're so invested in Beth's story. And with seven episodes and a full ending, you don't have to worry about this show getting canceled – it's a full story from start to finish. – Adam Chitwood



Image via BBC America

Created by: Chris Chibnall

Occupation: David Tennant, Olivia Colman, Jdie Whittaker, Andrew Buchan, Arthur Darvill, Carolyn Pickles, Matthew Gravelle, Charlotte Beaumont and Phoebe Waller-Bridge

If you're in the mood for a drama series that is also a crime thriller, check out the UK show Broadchurch. Originally broadcast on ITV, the series takes place David Tennant and Olivia Colman You play as two detectives investigating the disappearance and subsequent murder of a boy in a quiet fictional English town in Dorset. And while the crime fiction's point of view is certainly fascinating, this is a show that doesn't detract from the characters' emotions. This young child's death is devastating and the show is a huge contributor to how this affects the family and townspeople (fair warning: you will cry a lot). And while the second and third seasons don't match the narrowness of the first, it's still a gripping and utterly dramatic show. Season 2 focuses on the process after the events of the season one finale, while Season 3 focuses on a new case. – Adam Chitwood



Image via Netflix

Created by: Bill Dubuque and Mark Williams

Occupation: Jason Bateman, Laura Linney, Julia Garner, Peter Mullan and Janet McTeer

The Netflix original series Ozark is often one of the streaming service's most popular shows, and for good reason. Almost like a Backwoods version of breaking Badthe series begins with Jason BatemanLife is falling apart. He and his family are forced to move from Chicago to the Ozarks to start a money laundering business after discovering his longtime business associate is involved with Mexican drug cartels and they owe inordinate amounts of money. Bateman's life is spared when he promises to recover by opening a vacation destination in the Ozarks, but as he and his family become deeper and deeper into the criminal underworld, the line between good and evil continues to blur. It's pretty exciting, full of twists and turns and the performances are solid. It's not as tight or emotionally satisfying as Breaking Bad, but what is it then? As for replacements, Ozark is solid. – Adam Chitwood

breaking Bad

Breaking Bad Cast Season 5

Image via AMC

Created by: Vince Gilligan

Occupation: Bryan Cranston, Anna Gunn, Aaron Paul, Dean Norris, Betsy Brandt, RJ Mitte, Bob Odenkirk, Jonathan Banks and Giancarlo Esposito

It is quite possible breaking Bad will go down in history as the most influential television drama of all time. Creator Vince Gilligan does well in five seasons in a single story arc: The chemistry teacher Walter White (Bryan Cranston) from Mr. Chips to Scarface. This arc follows, but on the way there we get a gripping, winding, character-rich story that can fluctuate between deeply emotional and exciting. The show begins with the meek white man receiving an end-stage cancer diagnosis and choosing to get into the crystal meth trade in order to raise some money to leave his family. But as the story goes on and obstacles emerge, Walter White transforms into something far more dangerous and terrifying – or was it always there, bubbling beneath the surface? – Adam Chitwood



Image via NBC

Creator: Bryan Fuller

Cast: Mads Mikkelsen, Hugh Dancy, Laurence Fishburne, Caroline Dhavernas, Michael Pitt, Richard Armitage and Gillian Anderson

I guarantee you have never seen a show like this before Hannibaland if you like elaborately told serial killer stories with high levels of sexual tension, you will love it. Based on Thomas Harris Roman of the same name, the show started out as a kind of Hannibal Lecter series –Mads Mikkelsen plays forensic psychiatrist Dr. Hannibal Lecter called on by the talented criminal profiler Will Graham (Hugh Dancy) and the FBI's Behavioral Sciences division to track down a serial killer. Will and Hannibal develop an extremely inappropriate, deeply connected relationship that only complicates matters if Will suspects that Hannibal might play a role in these murders. And for Harris fans, the show includes several popular storylines from his Lecter books (like Red Dragon). Hannibal is a completely unique series that gets stranger and stranger over time, but keeps you hooked all the time. It consists of part of the mystery of crime, part of twisted psychological thriller romance, and part of horror story. You will soon wonder how on earth these graphics, poetics, and weirdness aired on NBC for three seasons. – Adam Chitwood



Image via Netflix

Created by: Joe Penhall

Occupation: Jonathan Groff, Holt McCallany, Anna Torv, Hannah Gross and Cotter Smith

Executive produced and essentially showrun by David Fincher, Mindhunter is one of the best TV shows. The series is based on real life and follows the beginnings of the FBI's crime profiling division in the late 1970s. Two FBI agents from the FBI's Behavioral Science Unit – Holden Ford (Jonathan Groff) and Bill Tench (Get McCallany) – Set about interviewing incarcerated serial killers to see why they understand why they did what they did in order to create a profile for the FBI that can be used to catch these type of killers. The show is methodical, wildly addicting, and surprisingly funny, and Fincher himself directs multiple episodes for the first two seasons, which also makes for a great piece of filmmaking. It's an addicting series that refuses to go easy or worn-out paths but instead finds brand new ways to record stories told countless times and, as a result, offers entirely new insights into human behavior. Oh yeah, and it's deliciously entertaining. – Adam Chitwood



Image via Netflix

Created by: Patrick Somerville

Occupation: Emma Stone, Jonah Hill, Justin Theroux, Sally Field, Sonoya Mizuno, Gabriel Byrne, Julia Garner and Billy Magnussen

The limited series Maniac is unlike anything else on TV, made all the better by the fact that True detective and Bond 25 Helmer Cary Fukunaga Directed all 10 episodes. The series takes place in a slightly more advanced version of the earth, in which two depressed and desperate individuals – played by Emma Stone and Jonah Hill– Take part in a mind-boggling pharmaceutical study to cure them of their diseases. In the study, they mentally act out different fantasies and scenarios, which then gives Fukunaga the opportunity to associate with different genres, while Stone and Hill play different versions of themselves in all areas Coen Brothers-esque crime story to one Lord of the rings-like fantasy world. While it's a bit uneven, the performances are fantastic and it's a really unique twist on a science fiction drama. – Adam Chitwood

The western wing

West Wing-Janel-Moloney

Image via NBC

Created by: Aaron Sorkin

Occupation: Martin Sheen, Bradley Whitford, Alison Janney, Rob Lowe, John Spencer, Richard Schiff, Janel Moloney and Dule Hill

Given that The western wing is probably my all time favorite show. I might be a little biased here, but that's it Aaron SorkinMagnum Opus. The show is an ode to good people who are trying to do their jobs well. It's not just an incredibly engaging look "behind the scenes" of the White House, it's also a funny comedy, moving drama, and charming love story rolled into one. Granted, the show goes downhill after Sorkin leaves, but while season five is doing badly, the series bounces back for the final two seasons as it transforms into a new, slightly different creative voice under the new showrunner John Wells. But man, you'd have a hard time finding anything better than these first few seasons. And this cast! If you are looking for something that is smart, fun, and easily addicting, make your way to the west wing. – Adam Chitwood

The crown

Image via Netflix

Image via Netflix

Created by: Peter Morgan

occupation: Claire Foy, Matt Smith, Jared Harris and John Lithgow

Netflix & # 39; most expensive series to date, The crown explores the early reign of England's Queen Elizabeth II. The series is beautifully staged in luscious but calm tones as young Elizabeth (Claire Foy) – newly married to Philip the Duke of Edinburgh (Matt Smith, plays against the guy) – first lives as a privileged princess before she must switch to the position of queen. From there, as her grandmother warns her, two Elizabeths will stand at odds with each other: a young woman with hopes and dreams of her own and a royal woman whose life will be full of duty and sacrifice. "But the crown always has to win."

A fascinating and easily captivating portrait of a young monarch in a fairly modern era, the crown benefits from having a writer (creator Peter Morgan) give him narrative continuity. The story, which offers a glimpse into many familiar faces of the government at the time, slides through history and crosses the globe. However, it is most effective when examining the nuances of Elizabeth's life and the lives of those around her who must change the way they look at her (from a wife, sister, and daughter to a monarch whom they oppose at all times have to). The traps of power as they are are shown here as claustrophobic and tiring, though the lavish lifestyle it seems to offer is also seductive. And that's why once you step into the royal world of the crown, you won't want to leave. It always wins. – Allison Keene

The Haunted Hill House


Image via Netflix

Creator: Mike Flanagan

Occupation: Carla Gugino, Michael Huisman, Kate Siegel, McKenna Grace, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Elizabeth Reaser, Victoria Pedretti, Lulu Wilson, Timothy Hutton, Violet McGraw, Julian Hilliard,

silence and Gerald's game filmmakers Mike Flanagan delivers his most ambitious Netflix project to date (and that really says something when you're talking about someone who successfully customized Gerald's game) The Haunted Hill House. Inspired by Shirley Jackson's groundbreaking ghost story, the series transmits almost none of Jackson's narratives (though at times too much of its prose) and instead focuses on the haunted lives of the withered Crain family. They hopped back and forth between the summer the Crains spent in the title-ridden mansion and the years of grief and family trauma they suffered as a result. Flanagan has proven in previous work that he has a knack for disruptive imagery and well-composed horrors, but his big success at The Haunting of Hill House is the way he ties the horrors into a rich, intertwined family history drawn from Tragedy is shaped. Under the direction of a spectacular ensemble, the series moves between emotional revelation and moments of horror that give you full body coldness. It's the most moving and honest portrayal of mortality and grief on this site Six feet below, but it will give you a lot more nightmares. – Haleigh Foutch

Anne with an E.


Image via Netflix

Created by: Moira Walley-Beckett

occupation: Amybeth McNulty, Geraldine James, R. H. Thomson, Lucas Jade Zumann, Dalila Bela

Though Moira Walley-Beckett retells Lucy Maud Montgomery's classic Anne of Green Gables Stories borrow heavily from the darker side of Anne's orphan upbringing and the bullying she experiences in school when she arrives on Prince Edward Island. Anne with an E. is happy. And if you forgot, yes! Dramas can be joyful!

The second season moves a bit away from her beloved source material, but this way she can find her own voice and get even better. The series also finds modern relevance by including more "woken up" storylines, but it never feels forced – it all fits in with Anne's (McNulty) optimistic view of the world and the people in it. Anne is happy, fun, and ultimately an adorable exploration of teenage life. And although the series was over 100 years ago, it does an exceptional job creating a deeply relatable mood and aesthetic that makes both the dangers and precious moments of growing up appear as raw and real as they do in real life. The new season is full of moments of triumph and joyful subplots, as well as scenes of sadness and distress. All of this leads to an uplifting season that ends with Anne Shirley-Cuthbert and everyone around her, exploring the possibilities of an ever-expanding world. – Allison Keene

Hap and Leonard


Image via SundanceTV

Developed by: Jim Mickle, Nick Damici

Occupation: James Purefoy, Michael K. Williams

Based on Joe R. Lansdale's novel series Hap and Leonard is a wonderfully funny, action-packed, and unique story about two unlikely friends – a white hippie cowboy and a black, gay Vietnam vet – who lived in East Texas in the 1980s. They often get scraped and accidentally end up in the middle of a crime they never wanted to investigate, but the series is just as dark, deep, and soulful as it is manic, violent, and often weird. The show goes a difficult line in each of its lively 6-episode seasons, balancing humor and heartbreak as its heroes, villains, and beautiful scenery fade from the screen with color. Ultimately, it does so with serenity. Each season, like the novels, is a complete story that deals with very different stories, making it a simple and satisfying affair. The southern banter and the unique dynamism also make Hap and Leonard a wonderfully unique jewel from Peak TV. – Allison Keene

Stop and catch fire


Image via AMC

Created by: Christopher Cantwell, Christopher C. Rogers

Occupation: Lee Pace, Scoot McNairy, Mackenzie Davis, Kerry Bishé and Toby Huss

It's such a shame that more people didn't watch Stop and catch fire. It premiered on AMC in the summer of 2014 and ran for four seasons. While critical praise has been sky high – especially for seasons two, three, and four – the ratings haven't been so, so I have to insist that you go to Netflix to see this underrated gem. The show begins in Dallas in 1983 and covers the dawn of the personal computer. If you are at all intrigued by the technology and know how the machines came about that we are so tied to, the premise alone should be a tie, but then Cantwell and Rogers populate the world with five extremely motivated and destructive protagonists as well are absolutely fascinating to watch. – Perri Nemiroff

The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story

the assassination attempt on Gianni-Versace-Darren-Criss

Image via FX

Created by: Ryan Murphy

Occupation: Darren Criss, Edgar Ramirez, Penelope Cruz, Ricky Martin, Cody Fern, Finn Wittrock, Judith Light and Jon Jon Briones

The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story is not the show you think it is. The limited series was marketed as a show about glitz, gamor, and fame, but in reality it's one American psycho-esque portrait of a Spree killer dealing with issues related to homophobia and self-hatred. In 1997 fashion designer Gianni Versace (Edgar Ramirez) was made by a man named Andrew Cunanan (Darren Criss). As it turns out, this was only part of the story, and The Assassination of Gianni Versace plays out in time (each episode plays before the events of the previous one – think Memento, but as a TV series) while they Cunanan's others Murders follows and delves into his personal life, trying to understand why this young man became so violent in such a public way. It's just as fascinating and revealing as People v. O.J. Simpsonand you've no doubt noticed that it has been at every TV awards show over the past year. Convince yourself now. – Adam Chitwood



Image via Netflix

Created by: Jed Mercurio

occupation: Richard Madden, Keeley Hawes

Bodyguard should come with a warning. There are several sections of this curvy new thriller series that are so anxious with such excruciating tension that I almost had to leave the room. I could have paused it, of course, but I didn't really want to stop looking at it. I just wanted to make a grimace and sink into the couch as far as possible. My heart pounded as I tried to explain that story really couldn't do this or that, right? CORRECT? It's stressful – in the best possible way.

The Netflix 6-episode series was directed by Jed Mercurio and premiered on the BBC (with stunning viewership). It follows the story of a metropolitan police officer, David Budd (Richard Madden), a war veteran who uses his off-duty specialty training to spread a potential terrorist attack in the first fifteen minutes of the series. But Bodyguard isn't interested in becoming Jason Bourne or Jack Ryan, at least not yet. What makes the series work – including all of those extremely tense moments – is how well Madden sells his evil character as a man who also has deep emotional connections and a compassionate heart. With David's job to be the bodyguard (hey!) Of a Conservative Home Secretary, Julia Montague (Keeley Hawes), the show increases its tension (and sexuality). Ultimately, the show offers an exhilarating ride that really shows Madden as a great talent who can run not only Winterfell's bannermen in Game of Thrones, but this breakout series and others – or even a particular one Film franchise. – Allison Keene

Narcos: Mexico


Image via Netflix

Created by: Carlo Bernard, Doug Miro

occupation: Michael Peña, Diego Luna, Tenoch Huerta Mejía, Alyssa Diaz, Joaquín Cosío and José María Yazpik

Have you seen Narcos or not, it is not difficult to understand and be compelled by the world of Narcos: Mexicowho immediately introduces their opposing forces and sets the stage for their eventual clash. At this point in time (late 1970s and early 1980s), drug trafficking in Mexico was chaotic and divided into tiny areas, most of which were constantly at war. When they weren't, the government would come in and burn fields as a token of strength for those who didn't pay their dues and didn't play their game. Here Diego Luna's drug lord Félix Gallardo (who at the time was only a subordinate of a territorial chief) sees the opportunity to found an "OPEC of Weed". He's smart and ambitious and wants to turn drug making and drug use into a business. in other words, organize.

His opponent is Kiki Camerena (Michael Peña), a DEA agent who is moving his family from California to Guadalajara to find a new job. Like Félix, Camerena is smart and focused, but finds the Guadalajara outpost that lacks both drive and resources. His claim that something big is happening to change the drug trade in Mexico, and his persistence in proving it despite being thwarted by Mexican officials, ignite a fire in his staff there. They soon organized themselves into a task force to fight cartels.

With a tense, rousing outcome from Gustavo Santaolalla, Narcos: Mexico is a series of meetings and arguments with outcomes that have real use. There's an investment and a connection to Félix and Kiki's operations, and a skill the show has for nurturing empathy for both characters equally, which is a difficult proposition. However, it does this by keeping things as grounded as possible. The series doesn't so much glorify the drug consumer's lifestyle, but paints it as a short-lived, warning story – for everyone involved. – Allison Keene



Image via SundanceTV

Created by: Ray McKinnon

Occupation: Aden Young, Abigail Spencer, J. Smith-Cameron, Adelaide Clemens, Clayne Crawford, Luke Kirby, and Jake Austin Walker

Remedy is possibly the best prison drama on TV that nobody seems to have seen. The Sundance TV series debuted in 2013 and ran for four critically acclaimed seasons, but if you've seen it, now is the perfect time to catch up. The plot revolves around Daniel Holden (Aden Young), a Georgia man who was released from prison on questionable DNA evidence after serving 19 years on death row for the rape and murder of his then 16-year-old girlfriend, Hannah. Despite protests from locals and some family members, Holden returns to his parents' home after his release.

While the mysterious element of whether or not Holden was actually guilty makes an excellent catch for the show, the real appeal of Rectify is the excellent South Gothic character study of Holden and the folks of Paulie, Georgia. Holden has a few allies, but many more critics in town; Both sides interpret the evidence or the lack of it in their own way. It's up to the viewers to decide which side they are on, although Young's performance – sometimes aloof, innocent, or downright disturbing – leaves you guessing. – Dave Trumbore

Better call Saul


Image via AMC

Created by: Vince Gilligan, Peter Gould

occupation: Bob Odenkirk, Jonathan Banks and Michael McKean

AMCs breaking Bad Spinoff goes back to find Saul Goodman (Odenkirk) at a time when he was known as Jimmy McGill (or "Slippin 'Jimmy"), a courtroom hustler whose life has not yet been turned upside down by Walter White had been. Though as sluggish as expected, the sluggish and artistically rendered Saul also turned out to be very dark, touching and dramatic thanks to Odenkirk & # 39; s exceptionally nuanced performance. Jimmy's complicated relationship with his brother Chuck (McKean) fuels the season's emotional undercurrent as he is thwarted in his ambitions to join a real law firm. When he opens his own business (in the closet of a nail salon) a revolving door of crazy customers pops up, but it's the selfless work Jimmy does on behalf of an older contingent around town that makes his trip meaningful and gives the series real dramatic.

Even so, Jimmy hits walls with every step, and his frustration with the dropouts and betrayals that pollute his life ultimately leads to his transformation as the wily Saul Goodman. The show is best at distancing itself from Breaking Bad, and although it is slowly starting to make some odd digressions, Better call Saul increases enormously towards the end of the first season. Ultimately, it is a haunting experience to be swept away into the chaos, hilarity, and sadness of Jimmy's rise and fall (and ultimately, the resurrection as Saul) – Allison Keene


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