With Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Instant Video at our fingertips, it can take someone quite a while to find something that suits them. New media is being made all the time — but sometimes the best shows are the ones that have already finished airing. So here are a few to get started on.
“Firefly,” written and created by Joss Whedon, is a sci-fi western drama television show. It’s about nine space cowboys that live on the ship Serenity. It was pitched as “nine people looking into the darkness of space and seeing nine different things.” Each of the characters is uniquely different but they all find profound ways to work with one another.
Sadly, “Firefly” was canceled after only eleven episodes. But there was such a big fan following that the movie “Serenity” was made. The show still has a pretty decent sized fan following, generally called “Browncoats.”
Female Character to Look Out For: All the women in this show are amazing (especially the friendship between Inara and Kaylee).
Similar Shows: “Star Trek” (I prefer The Next Generation); “Battlestar Galactica; or, for comic relief, watch some “Red Dwarf.”
Current Shows: “Doctor Who” (though I prefer New Who seasons 1-4)
The West Wing
“The West Wing,” written and created by Aaron Sorkin, is about a man named Jed Bartlet being elected POTUS. The show takes place, obviously, in the west wing of the White House where the president and his senior staff are located. The cast is full of phenomenal actors and the characters are just as fantastic. This show is obviously politically driven and tries to educate while it remains insanely interesting.
Female Character to Look Out For: CJ Cregg is one of the best television characters of all time.
Similar Shows: I’ve decided not to put current or similar shows because it’s seriously a stand-alone show!
The Cosby Show
A show featuring Bill Cosby that centers around the Huxtable family, a upper-middle class black family from ’84 to ’92, in Brooklyn. The show is comedy-based but, like any good family show, it includes important issues and lessons every now and then. Ripe with feel-good moments and reminders that some families aren’t bad, this show will cheer anyone up!
Female Character to Look Out For: Bad-ass woman Claire Huxtable is the image of fierce and fabulous.
Similar Shows: “Gilmore Girls”; “I Love Lucy” (which was filmed in front of a live audience and most laugh tracks used today are from Lucy); or, for a more dramatic family show, try “Everwood.”
Current Shows: Honestly, I’d say “Parks and Recreation” because it’s a great example of having friends as family and I think that’s really important for many of us these days.
Avatar: The Last Airbender (ATLA)
ATLA is an American cartoon series that has three seasons. The show follows 12-year-old Aang on his journey to master all the elements and bring peace and unity to the world by ending a tyrant’s reign. The show is immersed in fantasy and has the right balance of life lessons and comedy interspersed.
Female Character to Look Out For: Katara is a fabulously caring young lady who reminds everyone you don’t need to ignore your soft side to be strong.
Similar Shows: Other good shows about younger kids/teens with powers they have to harness would be “Buffy The Vampire Slayer” (I prefer “Angel”) and “Charmed.”
Current Shows: “Teen Wolf” and the spin off from ATLA (which just skips a bit in time in the universe) “The Legend of Korra.”
What completed shows do you recommend whenever you get the chance? Leave your favorites in comments!