After promising to deliver over 1000 hours of original content in 2017, Netflix has shown no signs of slowing down. The summer release schedule is no exception, with a slew of original programming coming our way from the streaming giant.
From a range of original movies including everything from the funny (Naked) to the emotional (Okja), and TV shows ranging from nostalgic and quirky (GLOW) to awkwardly endearing (Atypical), Netflix continues to prove why they're not just on top of their game, but far ahead of the competition.
Check out these 15 Netflix original movies and shows that you'll be binge watching this summer, from the (hopefully air-conditioned) comfort of your own home.
Director: Liz Flahive, Carly Mensch Release Date: June 23
A fictionalized take on a 1980s professional wrestling league for women known as the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (GLOW), the Netflix original series stars Alison Brie and looks to be a fun nostalgic romp. Orange Is the New Black's Jenji Kohan is on board as producer, ensuring the laughs will be more than just a one-dimensional excuse to get women in leotards.
Nobody Speak: Trials of the Free Press
Director: Brian Knappenberger Release Date: June 23
This documentary takes a deep look into Hulk Hogan's historic case against Gawker Media, and raises the question of how big money can influence freedom of the press, silencing critics if the price is right. An important doc which takes a look at the future of journalism.
Director: Bong Joon-ho Release Date: June 28
Okja is undoubtedly Netflix’s shining star for 2017, with the Korean auteur Bong Joon-ho’s latest film releasing simultaneously in cinemas and on the streaming platform. What’s more, Okja had its world premiere at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, debuting In Competition, sparking hot debate about how Netflix is changing up (or at least attempting to) redefine the world’s set-in-its-ways release schedule.
The drama aside, Okja tells the kind of story we can get behind – a young girl tries everything she can to save her best friend, a giant animal known as Okja, from an evil multi-national corporation. With a strong environmental theme, it couldn’t come at a better time.
Gypsy (Season 1)
Created by: Lisa Rubin Release Date: June 30
Naomi Watts stars as therapist Jean Holloway, who begins to develop intimate relationships with the people in her patients' lives, to potentially devastating effect. Creator Lisa Rubin wanted to explore female sexuality through women's 40s and beyond – after children, after building a career; a female mid-life crisis so to speak.
English director Sam Taylor-Johnson is behind some of the episodes, adding to the show's exciting take on the female psyche.
Little Witch Academia
Created by: Yoh Yoshinari Release Date: June 30
This anime series was first released as a short film in Japan, and after a second crowdfunded film, Netflix came on board for a TV series. Having already premiered in Japan, Little Witch Academia's international debut later this month is just the beginning of Netflix's new focus on anime.
Set at the Luna Nova Magical Academy, the series centers on student Akko and her two friends, as they learn the magic of witchcraft.
Castlevania (Season 1)
Created by: Adi Shankar, Warren Ellis Release Date: July 7
Based on the classic vampire hunter video games, Castlevania is another anime Netflix are bringing to the fore this year. With a loyal following ever since it's original 1986 game release, the television show will undoubtedly have a lot to live up to.
The dark, medieval fantasy tells the story of a besieged city controlled by Dracula, and one vampire hunter trying to save it from otherworldly beasts.
Director: Jeff Orlowski Release Date: July 14
From the director of Chasing Ice, Chasing Coral is a documentary which teams together divers, photographers, and scientists in a bid to examine why coral reefs around the world are dying at an unprecedented rate. It's a sobering look at climate change, and more than necessary viewing for the world today.
Friends From College (Season 1)
Created by: Francesca Delbanco, Nicholas Stoller Release Date: July 14
From the creator of Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Nick Stoller, and his wife Francesca Delbanco, Friends From College is another look at a mid-life crisis, this time centered on a group of friends from Harvard, who reconnect years later, only to realize they're all still trying to do the adult thing – and failing.
An all-star cast including Keegan-Michael Key, Cobie Smulders and Fred Savage feature, while Stoller directs all eight episodes of the first season.
To the Bone
Director: Marti Noxon Release Date: July 14
Inspired by the director’s own personal struggle with anorexia, To the Bone tells the story of a 20-year-old girl’s battle with the disease. Lily Collins and Keanu Reeves star in the film, which garnered success at this year’s Sundance Film Festival where Netflix picked up the rights. While it’s not explicitly a teen movie, it should do well with audiences who enjoyed Netflix’s hit show 13 Reasons Why.
Created by: Bill Dubuque, Mark Williams Release Date: July 21
Pegged as Netflix's own answer to Breaking Bad, Ozark tells the story of a Chicago-based financial advisor who has to flee the area with his family after making bad on some drug debts. He moves with his family to the Missouri Ozarks, where he can begin to pay back what he owes.
Starring Jason Bateman and Laura Linney, Ozark looks to be a darkly humorous series which just may well fill the Breaking Bad void in our lives.
Directed by: Michael Tiddes Release Date: August 11
A remake of the Swedish film Naken, Marlon Wayans stars in (and wrote the screenplay to) this comedy about a man who is forced to relive the hours before his wedding over and over – naked. One part Groundhog Day, one part Wayans brothers comedy, Naked isn't particularly original but it is the perfect mindless summer flick. Not to mention we'll take Marlon naked any day.
Created by: Robia Rashid Release Date: August 11
Atypical is the coming of age tale of Sam, an 18-year-old on the autistic spectrum, as he navigates life and a budding interest in the opposite sex, all while his family must adjust to his newfound independence. Judging from the short teaser that's been released, the show nails deadpan humor with tinges of black comedy and drama.
The Defenders (Season 1)
Created by: Douglas Petrie, Marco Ramirez Release Date: August 18
Marvel's successful run of TV shows on Netflix (Jessica Jones, Daredevil, Luke Cage, Iron Fist) culminates in The Defenders, a series bringing together all of the successful spin-offs in one. Admittedly this series looks to be the most impressive – where the individual stories might feel a bit lacklustre at times, The Defenders looks like a true Hollywood blockbuster.
Director: Adam Wingard Release Date: August 25
Based on the bestselling manga of the same name, Death Note is yet another of Netflix's forays into anime/manga territory. Bringing the story to life through live-action, the film is about a high school student who finds a supernatural book which gives him the power to kill anyone he deems unworthy of life, by writing their name down in the powerful notebook.
Once again a loyal following should ensure that the movie gets a lot of attention, while we're hoping Netflix's choice of live-action elevates the manga rather than cheapening it. Only time will tell.
Created by: Chuck Lorre, David Javerbaum Release Date: August 25
We don't know much more about Chuck Lorre's (The Big Bang Theory, Two and a Half Men, Dharma & Greg) upcoming sitcom besides the fact that Kathy Bates plays the owner of a cannabis dispensary, who along with the budtenders – her son and a guard – are constantly high.
That's about all we need to get excited to be honest – Bates is sure to be great, and nobody does sitcoms like Lorre (even if they do veer too much to the male gaze).
If you can't wait for these to start, check out our list of the best 50 movies streaming on Netflix.