Netflix understood a long time ago that to succeed internationally, it has to win the hearts of local audiences by producing local shows. The result is a wide array of excellent series that we count down in this concise list.
Alice in Borderland is a fast-paced heart-wrenching puzzle of a show that will have you wracking your brain and wiping your tears, often at the same time. It combines the wit of Hunger Games, the ruthlessness of Battle Royal, the goriness of Saw, and the social commentary of Squid Game, though sadly it has yet to receive the same renown as these titles.
With each game, the characters must solve a given problem before the timer runs out—when it does, they die, often violently and for others to witness. While playing the games, leads Arisu (Kento Yamazaki) and Usagi (Tao Tsuchiya) also try to solve the bigger picture by figuring out once and for all who the gamemaster is. Like the story it names, Alice in Borderland drives its characters into increasingly dark and mad situations the deeper it gets. It’s also built to last like the novel, a classic in the making bound to be rediscovered and re-enjoyed in the years to come.
From the Oscar-nominated cinematographer of City of God, this is a Brazilian Netflix TV show that I can only describe as a smarter Hunger Games. In a dystopian society, the majority of the planet’s population lives in extreme poverty while a select 3% (hence the title) live in a heaven-like world called “The Offshore”. Every year, the 20-year-olds of the planet get a chance to join the 3% in a selection process that for the first time might harbor moles. With an intriguing first episode that shares just enough to keep you informed but engaged, it’s easy to want to binge-watch the whole first season of 3% in one sitting.
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