Created by Nicole Taylor, ‘One Day’ narrates a touching star-crossed romance of Emma and Dexter, who meet on a particular day every year whilst dealing with the somber realities and jubilations of life. Dexter Mayhew and Emma Morley cross paths for the first time In 1988. Knowing they’ll part ways after college graduation, they spend a single day together, yet find themselves unable to forget each other. Despite their lives heading in different directions, their bond persists, evolving into an extraordinary relationship rooted in their initial connection. Each July 15th, for over two decades, glimpses of their relationship unfold, showcasing their ups and downs.
Based on David Nicholls’s novel and a film of the same name, ‘One Day’ traces the journey of true love in the face of time’s monumental challenges. As Emma and Dexter evolve and mature, so does their relationship, facing countless trials and the test of time. Here are a few shows like Netflix’s ‘One Day’ that spin epic tales of a profound connection and the struggles that come with it.
10. Emily in Paris (2020-)
‘Emily in Paris’ is a delightful comedy-drama series created by Darren Star. The show revolves around Emily Cooper, a young marketing executive from Chicago who unexpectedly lands her dream job in Paris. As Emily navigates the vibrant and often chaotic city, she encounters cultural differences, professional challenges, and romantic entanglements. Armed with her optimism and determination, Emily embraces the opportunity to immerse herself in the French capital’s rich culture and fashion scene.
Along the way, she forms friendships with her colorful coworkers, faces the complexities of office politics, and becomes entangled in a romantic triangle. If you liked the themes of romantic uncertainty and self-discovery in ‘One Day,’ ‘Emily in Paris’ will captivate you with similar explorations charmingly blended with humor and a lighthearted yet insightful portrayal of life in the City of Light.
9. Love Life (2020-2021)
‘Love Life,’ created by Sam Boyd, is an anthology romantic drama series that offers an intimate exploration of a person’s relationships and personal growth over the span of their life for each season. The show follows the journey of Darby Carter (Anna Kendrick) in the first season as she navigates the ups and downs of love and life in New York City. We are introduced to her first relationship following her parents’ divorce and follow her romantic endeavors from bashful experiences in her 20s to more mature relationships in her 30s.
Season 2 introduces us to Marcus and follows his journey through divorce, dating, making peace with failed relationships, and dealing with personal issues. ‘One Day’ mirrors ‘Love Life’ when it comes to creating romantic timelines that span several years and seeing the characters maturing with each subsequent episode. ‘Love Life’ offers a heartfelt and entertaining exploration of the complexities of love and the journey towards finding fulfillment in both relationships and single life.
8. This Is Us (2016-2022)
Crafted by Dan Fogelman, ‘This Is Us’ is an acclaimed drama series that follows the lives of the Pearson family across multiple generations. The show switches back and forth between past and present timelines, exploring the joys, struggles, and interconnected relationships of its diverse characters. At the heart of the story are Jack and Rebecca Pearson and their three children, Kevin, Kate, and Randall.
As the series unfolds, we witness the family’s triumphs and tribulations, including love, loss, and the complexities of familial bonds. Through poignant flashbacks and present-day moments, ‘This Is Us’ will evoke an emotional depth felt in ‘One Day,’ as both shows delve into themes of identity, forgiveness, and resilience, offering a nuanced portrayal of the human experience.
7. Virgin River (2019-)
‘Virgin River,’ by Sue Tenney, is a captivating drama series set in the picturesque town of Virgin River. The show follows Melinda Monroe, a nurse practitioner, as she seeks a fresh start in the small, close-knit community. Upon arriving in Virgin River, Mel faces the challenges of adapting to rural life while grappling with her past traumas. In time, she becomes entrenched in the lives of the townspeople, forming meaningful connections with the locals, including the former soldier and enigmatic bar owner, Jack Sheridan.
As she begins to take a liking to the small town, her relationship with Jack blossoms into a heartfelt romance. Throughout its multiple seasons and countless challenges, Melinda and Jack showcase a deep bond and resilience reminiscent of Emma and Dexter in ‘One Day.’ Both series explore themes of love, loss, and second chances in a binge-worthy experience.
6. Daisy Jones & The Six (2023)
Based on Taylor Jenkins Reid’s book of the same name, ‘Daisy Jones & The Six’ chronicles the rise and fall of a 70s rockband revolving around its charismatic lead singers, Daisy Jones and Billy Dunne. Created by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber, the show takes a documentary-style approach to recounting the band members’ lives from its inception to its split. The band quickly shoots to fame with the creative chemistry between its leads. The two begin to grow close despite Billy being happily married to Camila, who becomes suspicious of their relationship.
Emotions flare in consort with the band’s wild performances, and we follow the rollercoaster ride between the triangle of Billy, Daisy, and Camila. For those who enjoyed the tumultuous romantic explorations of ‘One Day,’ ‘Daisy Jones & The Six’ presents a scenario of conflicting relationships entangled within a rockstar band.
5. Firefly Lane (2021-2023)
The brainchild of Maggie Friedman, ‘Firefly Lane’ is a poignant drama series that explores the enduring friendship between two women, Tully Hart and Kate Mularkey. The show follows their journey from adolescence through adulthood, spanning decades of accomplishments and adversities. Tully is a charismatic and ambitious television personality, while Kate is a devoted wife and mother with a passion for writing.
Despite their contrasting personalities, Tully and Kate form an unbreakable bond as they traverse the complexities of life, love, and career aspirations. As Emma and Dexter keep finding their way back to each other, so do Tully and Kate, sharing laughter, heartache, and secrets. Both shows narrate epic decades-spanning stories about relationships and deep emotional bonds.
4. Generation 56K (2021)
‘Generation 56K,’ from the creative minds of Kim Gualino and Francesco Ebbasta, is a nostalgic yet modern dramedy that follows the lives of a group of friends who grew up in the era of dial-up internet. Set in Italy, the series intertwines themes of friendship, love, and technology as it navigates the complexities of adult life in the digital age. The plot revolves around two childhood friends, Daniel and Matilda, who reconnect years later when their paths unexpectedly cross. As they reminisce about their childhood and grapple with the challenges of the present, old feelings resurface.
Alongside Daniel and Matilda, the show explores the lives of their friends, each working on their own dreams, desires, and insecurities. ‘Generation 56K’ is sure to bring a smile to your face with its many nostalgic, relatable, and heartwarming moments. Similar to ‘One Day,’ it features a reunion of romantic interests who develop a profound bond with their ever-present spark and past memories.
3. The Time Traveler’s Wife (2022)
Created by Steven Moffat based on the novel by Audrey Niffenegger, ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife,’ presents a uniquely captivating romance involving inadvertent time travel. The story revolves around the unconventional relationship between Henry DeTamble and Clare Abshire. Henry, afflicted with a rare condition that causes him to involuntarily time travel, embarks on a tumultuous journey through different moments of his life. Meanwhile, Clare, his steadfast wife, is constantly faced with the challenge of loving someone whose presence is often fleeting.
As their love seeks to transcend time and space, they must find a way to deal with the consequences of Henry’s condition on their relationship and their lives. With its romance spanning different times, ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’ has a comparable feel to the poignant tale of ‘One Day,’ with the couples of both shows briefly coming together before being torn apart once more.
2. From Scratch (2022)
‘From Scratch,’ conceived by Attica and Tembi Locke, is a compelling romantic series inspired by Tembi Locke’s memoir of the same name. It revolves around Amy Wheeler, an aspiring artist looking to find her canvas in Italy. During her travels, she happens upon a charismatic chef, Lino, who helps her discover the city’s beauty and the pangs of burgeoning love. Their relationship is tested when he moves with her to Los Angeles to start a life together but struggles to adapt to the cultural shift. Fans of ‘One Day’ will be gripped by the couple’s story unfolding over the years, marked by personal sacrifices, family struggles, and emotional moments.
1. Normal People (2020)
Driven by compelling performances by Paul Mescal, Daisy Edgar-Jones, and Desmond Eastwood, ‘Normal People’ chronicles the complex relationship between Marianne Sheridan and Connell Waldron, two Irish teenagers from different socio-economic backgrounds. Set in the small town of Carricklea, the story follows Marianne and Connell as they embark on the tumultuous journey from high school to adulthood, grappling with love, friendship, and identity along the way. Despite their differences, Marianne and Connell share an undeniable connection that transcends societal norms and expectations.
Much like in ‘One Day,’ their relationship ebbs and flows over the years and is marked by moments of intimacy, misunderstanding, and heartbreak. Based on the 2018 eponymous novel by acclaimed Irish author and screenwriter Sally Rooney, the miniseries has been adapted to the screen by Rooney, Alice Birch and Mark O’Rowe. Through its raw and intimate portrayal of human relationships, ‘Normal People’ offers a compelling exploration of love, vulnerability, and an evolving central relationship, sure to be appreciated by those who like similar elements in ‘One Day.’
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