5 Underrated TV Shows You Should Binge Watch

Words by Kelly Punzalan

Featured Image from The Fandomentals

One of the most prominent cultural phenomena of this generation is probably the binge-watching culture. Online streaming services have completely changed the way we consume entertainment. We have easy access to hundreds of movies, documentaries, and TV series right on our computers and cellphones. People no longer anticipate the airing of the newest episode of their favorite show or wait for the DVD to come out because they can literally watch all five seasons in one sitting.

Since we’re no longer confined to the weekly airing schedules of television channels, this gives us an opportunity to discover TV shows that many people normally wouldn’t pay attention to. As an avid binge-watcher, I’ve found countless shows that I absolutely adore but sadly have no one to discuss them with. Game of Thrones, Black Mirror, Stranger Things, and How I Met Your Mother are all great series, but I’d like to put the spotlight on these hidden gems.

5. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is extremely funny and the writers behind this show are just brilliant. It is a musical show, but it’s not at all cheesy or dragging because the songs are actually the best part. The characters and story arcs are cohesive and seem like they were actually planned out beforehand rather than thrown together at the last minute for drama or to please fans.

They also do a great job of tackling various issues such as mental illness, feminism, stereotyping, and dysfunctional relationships, both in their serious and comedic moments. Hilarious self-awareness, meta jokes, and pop culture references, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has got it all.

P.S. If you’re still not convinced, one of the main characters, Josh Chan, is played by Filipino-American actor Vincent Rodriguez III who is not only a terrific singer but has also got killer abs.

4. Elite

Elite is the Spanish telenovela version of Gossip Girl. Granted, it may not be award show-worthy but it’s definitely one of those guilty pleasure watches. Sometimes you want to just turn your brain off for a few hours and watch a show about wealthy teenagers living lavishly, spending their parents’ money on booze, and getting into petty fights with one another. And they’re all played by attractive actors who don’t look like teens at all. There are many shows like Elite but there’s just something about the characters that pulls you in and makes you want to root for them. Oh, plus there’s a murder mystery involved too. Fun!

3. Dear White People

Although Filipinos won’t exactly find this comedy-drama relatable, Dear White People still tells a powerful story and could, in fact, be an eye-opener for those who are unfamiliar with the complicated racial tensions that exist in the United States. It’s raw, emotional, thought-provoking, and will absolutely bring you to tears at some point.

2. Humans

Science fiction involving robots and AI isn’t new or groundbreaking content, but I find that Humans is one of the few shows that do it well. This British series may not be as flashy nor as action-packed as its counterparts, but it does an impeccable job of portraying the effects of incorporating AI into our daily lives, as well as the inherently complicated concept of humanity.

1. American Vandal

I cannot recommend this show enough. If you’re a fan of true-crime documentary series and you have a sense of humor, there’s a good chance you’ll love American Vandal. I started watching this knowing absolutely nothing, I didn’t even read the short blurb before I clicked ‘play’ on Episode One. For the first five minutes or so, I initially thought this was a real documentary. As the pilot unfolded, I was pleasantly surprised to find a hilariously satiric mockumentary instead. I mean, the entire premise revolves around a high school kid who spray-painted male genitalia on his teachers’ cars. That alone should intrigue you enough to watch it.

P.S. The second season, which is completely unrelated to the kid painting phallic images on cars, is just as glorious.

What’s your favorite underrated TV series?