The science-fiction resurgence is in full swing on television. If you’re struggling to find the best sci-fi on Netflix, there’s something for everyone below. You have to watch The Expanse and read the books. It’s a fun ride on the Rocinante. And there are plenty of shows to choose from on Netflix for the diehard sci-fi fan.
Luckily, Syfy has seen a resurgence in quality. Sure, it still pulls out the Sharknado, but thankfully, there have been some excellent entries on the network which have made their way to Netflix.
1. The Expanse
One of the best sci-fi shows on television right now. Luckily for us fans, Netflix signed a deal with Syfy which is probably why we are getting a third season. It’s criminally under watched and with two seasons on the streaming service, you have the perfect binge-watching session. It’s based off a series of novels, and the showrunners have done an incredible job of taking the source material and compacting it into one 10-episode season and a 13-episode second season. I won’t spoil any of it, but if you haven’t joined the crew of the Rocinante, get to watching. (Note: it’s available for international viewers and not in the United States. You’ll need the Syfy app to watch. I know, but it’s the Roci, so they make the cut as #1.)
2. Black Mirror
If you love the Twilight Zone, you’ll love Black Mirror. Charlie Booker’s creation was such a hit with Netflix audiences; the company commissioned an entire season just for the streaming service. Three seasons of exquisite television which offers horrifying glimpses of real-world behaviors and what they could become. I love The Expanse, but this show is damn addicting. And more than a little scary.
3. Stranger Things
Talk about a show that came out of nowhere. Maybe we needed a strong dose of 80s nostalgia, but Netflix outdid themselves with one of their best original content series to date. Yes, there will be a second season. Most of your friends and family have seen the show. Now there’s just one question. Why haven’t you? And good luck picking your favorite episode. It’s like picking your favorite kid. You might have one, but would you ever admit it?
An under-the-radar show if there ever was one. The Canadian TV series follows a time-travelling cop who follows domestic terrorists from 2077 to 2012. Rachel Nichols is great, and while it lasted four seasons, it feels like it was canceled a season or two early. Definitely add it to your Netflix queue.
Lost fans rejoice. Josh Holloway is the lead in this alien invasion series from USA in which you never really see the aliens. Instead, it’s human versus human as a resistance forms to battle the occupiers as the aliens just watch from afar. Nice way to maximize the budget USA. And if you liked Holloway’s Sawyer character from Lost, he’s essentially the man’s twin in Colony. Thankfully, you have two seasons ready to rock on Netflix. Get used to the fact we probably never will see the aliens.
6. Dark Matter
The first of the Syfy one-two punch (the show is from the Canadian Space channel, but airs on Syfy stateside). Dark Matter follows the crew of the Raza who have woken up out of stasis with their memories wiped. Their original identities are a who’s who of the galaxy’s most wanted. Now, they are known simply as One through Six (the order they woke up) plus an android called simply Android. The premise sounds more than a bit absurd, but damn if it doesn’t work. Each episode builds on the last as they try to piece together their past and work towards who they can be with a blank slate. If you get to binge-watching the first two seasons, you can catch up with season three airing on Syfy now.
The second of the Syfy/Space Channel duo. I love this show. It may not be for everyone, but it’s pure fun. Killjoys are essentially bounty hunters, and the show follows Dutch, John and D’avin who work for the Reclamation Apprehension Coalition (RAC). RAC agents work within a four-planet system known as the Quad and remain a neutral third party outside of governments, corporations and conflicts. It doesn’t always work according to plan, and Netflix has the first two seasons up. The third premieres on Syfy in late June.
8. The 100
Easily my favorite CW show. But I also love post-apocalyptic shows. All the seasons are up to binge, so if you’re looking for that type of how, it’s a fun ride. The story gets recycled a bit, but it follows the last known human survivors who sought refuge on 12 space stations fused together into The Ark. With it breaking down, 100 juvenile prisoners are sent down to Earth to see if it’s survivable after an AI initiated all out nuclear war nearly 100 years ago. You guessed it. They aren’t the only survivors.
It made our best shows on Netflix, so it deserves a spot on the best sci-fi list. Yes, the ending will infuriate some, but the show holds up well as time passes. And is there better pilot episode for a tv show? A lot of mystery and mythology was built up over the first few seasons, but it ended with a host of unanswered questions. It was probably the point, but still. What was the smoke monster?
10. Person of Interest
Netflix lists this in the Crime TV Show category, but its roots are firmly in sci-fi. Especially as the series progresses through its five seasons. CBS gave it room and damn did it excel. The basic premise is a computer program was built to analyze data to predict terrorist attacks. Instead, the machine was able to predict all forms of crime and would spit out the Social Security number of the victim or perpetrator. Give it a watch. It’s one of the rare shows that gets better with each season.
11. The Twilight Zone
Can’t list Black Mirror without a nod to its inspiration, The Twilight Zone. It strays away from sci-fi at points, but it always manages to work a theme from the genre in somehow. Four seasons of Rod Serling’s biting social commentary and crazy twists. It’s why we love Black Mirror so much today.
A six-episode event series that could have been one hell of a TV series. It follows the crew and passengers on the USS Ascension, a ship launched in the 1960s to colonize another planet. Or was it? Plenty of twists and turns along the way and a murder opens up the crew to question their reality. It’s all revealed by the end and leaves you wanting more. Unfortunately, we are left with one giant cliffhanger.
Wrapping the Best Sci-Fi on Netflix
This list will continually be updated as shows are added or deleted from the content catalog. Sound off below on what you want to see added.