Netflix has been one of the pioneering platforms for shows. From producing new content every month to using its production to rerun classic shows, the streaming giant is replete with quality shows, documentaries, and movies. From chirpy themes to social commentary to incisive documentaries, the shows that we have compiled here can be easily watched by families on the streaming platform. So, without further ado, here is the list of really good family shows on Netflix that are available to stream right now:
15. Cuckoo (2012-)
Created by English writers Robin French and Kieron Quirke, ‘Cuckoo’ is a British sitcom that revolves around the exploits of the titular Cuckoo, essayed by Andy Samberg. Nominated for a BAFTA TV Award, ‘Cuckoo’ thrives on the brilliant comedic timing of English comedian Greg Davies, the patriarch of the Thompson family. While the show does suffer from a sluggish continuation, it still manages to tickle the funny bones, credited to the spontaneous performances of the cast. The show premiered on BBC Three in 2012 and now has been taken over by Netflix since 2016.
14. Fuller House (2016 – 2019)
Created by American screenwriter, producer and director Jeff Franklin, ‘Fuller House’ is an American sitcom about the titular D.J. Tanner-Fuller, essayed by American actress Candace Cameron Bure, a veterinarian and widowed mother of three sons. She lives with her sister Stephanie, played by Jodie Sweetin, her best friend Kimmy Gibbler, portrayed by Andrea Barber, and her teenage daughter, with all living together at the Tanners’ childhood home in San Francisco, California.
The show consists of more or less the same star cast and is the sequel to ‘Full House’, which aired from 1987 to 1995 on ABC channel. A Netflix original series, the show premiered in 2016 and its last season will premier in late 2019. While the first season was met with extremely negative reviews, given the poor and flunky writing, the succeeding seasons developed upon its narrative to churn out a cohesive sitcom.
13. Heartland (2007)
A Canadian family drama, ‘Heartland’, set in Alberta, Canada, is a multi-generational saga following Fleming family as they go through life and support each other during the happiest and most trying times. Adapted from the 26 novel series ‘Heartland’, written by Lauren Brooke, the show sheds light on the close familial bonds which help one go through a tough time. The longest-running one-hour scripted drama in Canadian history, ‘Heartland’ also lays emphasis on nature and its effect on positivity, much like the Romantic Movement in literature. With earnest performances from the cast, ‘Heartland’ is an engaging watch.
12. Family Reunion (2019 -)
Starring Tia Mowry, Anthony Alabi, Talia Jackson, and Isaiah Russell-Bailey, ‘Family Reunion’ is a sitcom created by Meg DeLoatch. The movie follows six eccentric and interesting individuals who move from Seattle, Washington, to Columbus, Georgia, to be close with their extended family. However, once they start living around each other hilarious conflicts between members arise that constantly force them to learn something new and adapt to each other’s presence. The light-hearted show is focused on the themes of familial conflicts and the painstaking process of keeping an extended family together that can have surprisingly positive individual results.
11. The Upshaws (2021 -)
Created by Regina Y. Hicks and Wanda Sykes, ‘The Upshaws’ is a sitcom that stars Wanda Sykes, Mike Epps, Kim Fields, and Page Kennedy. As the name suggests, the series primarily focuses on the titular working-class family based in Indiana that is faced with ordinary domestic problems. Bennie Upshaw is the family patriarch who works as a mechanic and genuinely tries to give his family the best possible life. Unfortunately, all is not well as he continues to have a rough relationship with his sister-in-law, who enjoys giving him a tough time. Although Bennie may not necessarily have a blueprint for success, the heartwarming and hilarious story of his eccentric family is definitely a fun watch.
10. Dad Stop Embarrassing Me! (2021 -)
Jamie Foxx & Jim Patterson’s ‘Dad Stop Embarrassing Me!’ is a family comedy series that revolves around the themes of fatherhood and the usual teenage ordeals. Brian Dixon is a well-off business from Atlanta who runs BAY Cosmetics, a company that he has inherited from his mother. Although he has nothing else to worry about other than his business, his life takes an unexpected turn when his former lover tragically dies. Brian, who has never looked after someone, suddenly finds himself responsible for his teenage daughter Sasha who has to move from Chicago to Atlanta to live with him.
9. Kim’s Convenience (2016 – 2021)
Inspired by the play of the same name by Ins Choi, ‘Kim’s Convenience’ is a Canadian comedy television series that revolves around the conflicts of a typical modern-day working-class family. The show follows the Kims, a Korean-Canadian family who immigrated to Toronto in the 80s and has been living there ever since. Mr. and Mrs. Kim run a convenience store to make a living and work diligently to provide their kids, Jung and Janet, a comfortable life. Unfortunately, when the former turns 16, he has a fallout with his father, and after their heated exchange, the two fail to save their relationship from disintegrating. The father-son duo has been estranged ever since, adding a whole new dimension to their ordinary familial conflicts.
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8. Merry Happy Whatever (2019 -)
Featuring stand-out performances by Dennis Quaid, Bridgit Mendler, Brent Morin, and Ashley Tisdale, ‘Merry Happy Whatever’ is a comedy streaming television series. Don Quinn is the controlling and strict family patriarch of the Quinn household who is struggling with the responsibilities of the Christmas holidays. Things only take a turn for the worse when Emmy brings Matt, her boyfriend from California, hoping to get permission to marry him. Naturally, Don is not happy as her daughter’s boyfriend is yet to have a stable career, something that greatly bothers him.
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7. Dogs (2018)
‘Dogs’, a Netflix documentary television series, travels through different locations around the world, examining and exploring the inexplicable bond and relationship shared between dogs and humans, through the span of different cultures. Created by Glen Zipper, the documentary is a very well-crafted piece of work that resonates with both compassion for the subject matter and the perceptive research that is done. It also builds upon the narrative in a storytelling format and thus helps the viewers connect with the show on a much deeper level, emotionally.
Running for nearly fifty minutes, the show beautifully showcases the wonders of the relationship shared between the canines and humans, which is unbreakable. ‘Dogs’, since its premiere, has received praise and has earned a rating of 92 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
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6. Anne with an E (2017 – )
Based on Canadian author Lucy Maud Montgomery’s novel ‘Anne of Green Gables’, ‘Anne with an E’ chronicles the adventures of a young orphan girl named Anne in the late 19th century, as she learns to steer through her new life on Prince Edward Island. Releasing in 2017, the drama forms the narrative structure on a complex central character and seamlessly brings out an emotionally echoing story exploring a variety of themes through the course of the show. The show received positive reviews from many critics who appreciated its mature subversion of the novelist archetypes to adapt it within the context of a visual narrative.
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5. One Day at a Time (2017-2019)
A comedy television series, ‘One Day at a time’ is the story of a Cuban-American family who lives in the Los Angeles neighbourhood of Echo Park. The family consists of a single mom, who is an Army veteran dealing with PTSD, her kids and her Cuban mother. The show, developed by American screenwriters Gloria Calderon Kellett and Mike Royce, is an adaption of Norman Lear’s sitcom of the same name, which ran from 1975 to 1984.
‘One Day at a time’ has been received quite positively by viewers and critics alike for its mature exploration of themes of mental illness, immigration, sexism, homophobia, and racism that Latinos living in the United States face. The show has also been nominated for many awards including two Primetime Emmy Awards and one People’s Choice Award, to name a few.
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4. Jane the Virgin (2014 -)
Premiering in 2014, ‘Jane the Virgin’ follows Jane Villanueva, essayed by Gina Rodriguez, a young, working, religious young Latina virgin, who becomes pregnant after accidentally artificially inseminating herself. This absurd theme is complemented by the superb performance of the cast, led by the aforementioned Gina Rodriguez. Built on a foundation of satirising social taboos and exploring Villanueva’s religiousness, the show is a hilarious comedy. ‘Jane the Virgin’ has been poured with various accolades, including a Golden Globe for “Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy”.
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3. Hilda (2018 -)
Premiering in 2018 on Netflix, ‘Hilda’ is a British sitcom which follows the exploratory adventures of the titular Hilda, a fearless and blue-haired girl who travels to the city of Trolberg and befriends even the most dangerous monsters. Though the show is targeted towards a primarily a young audience, the innovative writing and the brilliant performances by the voice actors make it a must watch for family audience. Based on British cartoonist Luke Pearson’s award-winning graphic novel series ‘Hilda’, the show is built on the genre of fantasy, adventure and comedy.
The first season has drawn immense critical praise, with critics complementing the deft adaption from the graphic novel. The critical success and the humungous love from the viewers and fans of the graphic novel have earned it a new season, which is supposed to premiere in 2019.
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2. A Series of Unfortunate Events (2017-2019)
‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’ is a black-comedy adapted from American novelist Lemony Snicket or Daniel Handler’s series of novels ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’. Developed by American writer Mark Hudis and American filmmaker Barry Sonnenfeld, the show revolves around the misadventures of Violet, Klaus, and Sunny – the three Baudelaire children – following the deaths of their parents in the destruction of their home. As the children are shuffled between various foster homes, they are pursued and stalked by Count Olaf, essayed by Neil Patrick Harris, who wants to gain control of the vast Baudelaire inheritance before the children come of age. The Baudelaires also discover their parents’ connections to an elusive and mysterious secret society.
The show is a brilliant adaptation of a classic children’s novel. From the intrinsic detailing of the aesthetics to the faithful yet innovative adaptation from the source material to the performance of Neil Patrick Harris, ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’ is a must watch for all.
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1. Meet The Adebanjos (2012 -)
Created by Debra Odutuyo and Andrew Osayemi, ‘Meet the Adebanjos’ is a family-based Nigerian-British sitcom. The Wale Ojo and Yetunde Oduwole-starrer revolves around the Adebanjos, a Nigerian-British family living in South London whose young members have naturally become closer and used to the English values and lifestyle after living in the capital for years. However, the Nigerian family patriarch has not forgotten his old-fashioned African values and is willing to try everything possible to make his children remember them too.
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