You know how new DVDs and Blu-rays always come out on a Monday? Netflix laughs in the face of such regimented scheduling and instead releases all of its new TV shows and movies whenever the heck it feels like it.
That can make keeping track of all of the new stuff a first-world nightmare of epic proportions.
But help is at hand: here we highlight all of the best new stuff on Netflix. And yes, that does mean we've left out all of the rubbish, so you won't find the likes of Frontier or Sharknado: The 4th Awakens here.
Instead, allow us to guide you, truffle pig-like, to the finest and freshest streaming fungus.
Note: the newest stuff is at the top of the list, with the shows and movies getting progressively less new as you scroll down and switch pages
Dear White Peeople
Ah, let's talk about everyone's favourite issue: race. Based on the 2014 film of the same title, this witty series follows a group of students of colour at, you guessed it, a school with a predominantly white student population. Each episode focuses your attention on a different character and his struggles, set in the already dramatic environment of college life. The show opens with a group of students holding a blackface party on campus, so you can sort of expect what goes down next.
It's provocative, sharp, and timely, never shying away from the very real identity issues of the minority. The downside is each episode is only 30 minutes long, so you're going to blaze through this 10-episode season pretty quick.
Words by Elissa Loi
13 Reasons Why
The show has been hit with a wave of controversy and yet, recently renewed for a second season which should tell you about its impact. Based on the 2007 novel, the series revolves around the last days of one Hannah Baker and the cassette tapes she made before her death. While it might be set in high school, the issues of suicide and bullying are very much adult and relevant, no matter how old you are.
It can get quite painful to watch at times because it doesn't gloss over excruciating detail, but this is a powerful story that will move you. We can't wait for the second season.
Words by Elissa Loi
Loosely based on real-life events in 2009, when Somali pirates hijacked a US cargo ship and took Captain Richard Phillips hostage, this thriller is now available in 4K. So you’ll be able to see every sweaty pore on Tom Hanks’ face as he attempts to negotiate with the hijackers and save his crew hidden below deck.
As a logical viewer you know the American hero will likely survive, especially when the US Navy turns up, but even so, watching Captain Phillips is still an exercise in coping with stress. The tension zigzags throughout, so keep on holding your cushion.
American Crime Story: The People V OJ Simpson
It’s a testament to the slick brilliance of this docu-drama that despite EVERYONE IN THE WORLD KNOWING WHAT HAPPENS AT THE END it’s still shot through with near-constant tension and moments of utter disbelief. Truly, you finish almost every episode thinking ‘That’d never happen in real-life’ before remembering that yes, it did.
Maybe it’s the story we should be crediting, because it has everything: murder, sex, fame, money, race, power and John Travolta’s really odd-looking face. But at the same time it feels wrong to be positive about it, because the events depicted here are almost uniformly tawdry and leave almost all of the major players looking distinctly flawed. And, y’know, two people got killed.
Outside of the story itself, the reason why it all works is that the the script is razer-sharp and the acting excellent - Sarah Paulson is particularly good as lead prosecutor Marcia Clark, and Cuba Gooding Jr, David Schwimmer and Sterling K. Brown all shine too. The period detail also helps; despite the fact that these events took place only 20-odd years ago, it might as well have been 200, and you’re swiftly plunged back into a world of perms and mullets. Joy.
Well this is a bit weird: rather than one of those one-off stand-up specials that Netflix is so keen on commissioning these days, here we have the first two of a series of three stand-up specials. But then this is Dave Chappelle; the enigma, the legend, the king of self-destruction.
This is a man who was always fond of pushing peoples' buttons, who walked out on $50m TV deal, and who has spent the last decade only occasionally stepping into the spotlight to be furious about the entertainment industry - but if you're expecting fireworks you might be disappointed.
That's not to say these aren't enjoyable sets. On the contrary, there are chuckles aplenty as Chappelle riffs on topics close to his heart such as Bill Cosby, the comedy scene, racial inequality and OJ Simpson, but the two shows are also lacking the sort of bite that many will be expecting.
Other than some 'bits' on LGBQT themes that some will find insensitive at best, this is enjoyable but safe stand-up. Which would be fine - but this is Dave Chappelle. Hopefully the third, yet to be released, show will be a little more progressive and edgy.