It’s lockdown time again. And that means dusting off the old Netflix binge-watch playlists and deep diving into shows you may not have ever explored before.

If you’ve burned through your watch list already, here are six shows to help you get through the lockdown blues.

Schitt's Creek

Schitt's Creek is a fun, easy watch, and with six seasons to get through, lockdown will go by in a snap. The show is a classic fish-out-of-water scenario, but what makes it a great binge-watch is the subtle yet ongoing character growth and development they all go through.

The show follows the Rose family after they lose their fortunes and are forced to move to a small rural town called Schitt's Creek. There, the once-wealthy family need to adjust to their new surroundings and offbeat locals as they find their footing in the world again.

For me, I struggle a bit with the first season, but those episodes are necessary for the rest of the show to hinge on. So if it doesn’t grab you at first, give it a chance.

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The Good Place

Community

Vincenzo

Vincenzo is a South Korean show that crosses a lot of genres. It’s got action, it’s got comedy, it’s got mystery and intrigue, it’s got the mafia and crime, but most of all, it’s got a cast of interesting and fun characters that you don’t often see in Korean TV.

The series is about a Korean-born man who was adopted by a mafia boss and raised in Italy. When his adopted father dies, Vincenzo reluctantly returns to Seoul to retrieve gold that’s hidden under a run-down building. To achieve his goal, Vincenzo moves into the building and meets the people who live and run their businesses there, including a chef who claims to make Italian food, the owner of the dance studio who choreographs zombies, and the law firm trying to save the building from being bought out by a dodgy company.  

Like most Korean shows, Vincenzo only has one season, but each of the 20 episodes run for a bit over an hour, so there’s a lot of content there to get through lockdown.  

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Crash Landing on You

Memories of the Alhambra

Sons of Sam: A Descent into Darkness

If you’re into true crime documentaries, Sons of Sam: A Descent into Darkness is a new one from Netflix that is as chilling as it is utterly compelling. What makes this series so interesting is that it doesn’t just focus on the terror of the Son of Sam killings or on David Berkowitz - the man accused of the murder spree, but it takes you deep into the journey of investigative journalist Maury Terry and his own descent into darkness.

The docuseries delves into the Son of Sam killings that terrorised New York’s boroughs in the late 1970s. Sons of Sam focuses on Maury Terry, a journalist who picks up the story early on and spends the rest of his life chasing after what he suggests was a botched police investigation.

Unfortunately, Sons of Sam is just a short series with four episodes, but they’re so good it’s hard to switch off. The narration from Paul Giamatti adds the right balance of seriousness and curiosity that puts you into the mind of Maury Terry.

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Night Stalker: The Hunt for a Serial Killer

Crime Scene: The Vanishing at the Cecil Hotel

Aggretsuko

Lockdown got you mad? Aggretsuko has the right idea! The Japanese anime is fun and lighthearted and a great example of how to let off steam.

The anime is about Retsuko, a 25-year-old single red panda who works in an office. Throughout her day, as she faces challenges of modern-day single life and workplace sexism, Retsuko lets off steam by singing heavy metal songs at a karaoke bar. The show follows her journey as she decides on a path towards happiness in her life.

If you’re not a fan of subtitles, Aggretsuko is also dubbed in English (so you can watch it while flicking through social media on your phone). Episodes are short, but there’s three seasons (and another on the way!) plus a Christmas special to enjoy.

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One Piece

The Way of the Househusband

The Circle

Ok, yes, The Circle is a reality show, but it’s also basically televised quarantine with catfishing and oh man is it addictive watching! And somehow, season 2 ended up being waaay better than the first season.

The Circle involves individuals creating online personas -- some real, some fake -- and interacting with each other while locked down in an apartment. Everyone chats away like you do on social media and the contestants all complete games and challenges. Each “week”, the contestants have to vote for someone to leave, and the last one standing wins a bunch of prize money.

There’s something cathartic about watching The Circle during a lockdown. The show presents an interesting social experiment around catfishing and true self and all that, but sometimes it’s just fun to watch a dumb reality show.

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Love is Blind

Are You the One?

Monkey

Growing up, we knew the show as Monkey Magic, but apparently it’s just Monkey.

If you’re looking for an old-school nostalgia trip, Monkey is definitely the way to go. I’m not sure how well it holds up today, but the wtf-ness will definitely help you get through the lockdown.

The '70s Japanese series is hard to describe. It’s… weird. There's a quartet of unusual pilgrims led by a monkey-faced guy with magical powers. Episodes often include some moral based on Buddhist or Taoist lore, but the show is… no, I don’t even have words for it. Just watch it and try not to get the theme song eternally stuck in your head (you've been warned!)

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The New Legends of Monkey

Avatar: The Last Airbender