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Top 12 TV Dramas: The best shows to watch on Netflix instant watch

Updated on March 2, 2014
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Best of Netflix: TV Dramas

Here's a quick list to the best tv shows on Netflix instant watch as of 2013, based on popularity, personal polls, and Netflix user ratings. Netflix has some of the hottest tv dramas, so pull out your tv's and tablets (or what ever gizmo you use to watch tv) and enjoy the best tv shows on Netflix instantly. What's your favorite Netflix tv drama?

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Crime Dramas

When Lincoln is sentenced to death for a crime he didn't commit, his younger brother Micheal comes to his aid. Micheal is an engineer, with a knack for genius, who uses his wit and expertise to devise a plan to break his brother out of prison.
Currently you can watch all four seasons on Netflix instant.

Netflix User Rating: 2,297,704 ratings- 4.2 stars

Son's of Anarchy is a top rated FX original series that follows California biker club, the Son's of Anarchy. Jax Teller is a young member of the club, and son of the former leader. As the Son's battle to protect their town of Charming from rival gangs, financial exploiters, and crooked politicians, it's up to Jax to guide the club into the right direction. With constant action, and an unpredictable storyline, Son's of Archy is easily one of the best tv shows on Netflix.

Netflix user Rating: 1,727,110 ratings- 4.5 stars

Breaking Bad rightfully takes the top spot for the best TV drama on Netflix instant watch. Bryan Cranston plays high school science teacher, Walter White, a husband and father who's diagnosed with cancer. In order to keep from leaving his family debt after his passing, Walter resorts to a life of crime. This series is a Netflix-must-see. It's won six Emmy Awards, and has deserved every one.

Netflix User Rating: 2,351,487 ratings- 4.4 stars

Best Crime Drama on Netflix instant watch

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Mystery Dramas

TV murder mystery, 'The Killing' captures the raw emotions of a family who's teen daughter, Rosie, is mysteriously murdered. As suspects begin to accumulate, detective Sarah Linden, is faced with the daunting task of sorting out the complexities within the case. This 'moody' drama, captures a realistic sense of pain, as the characters portray a deep sense of mourning throughout the series. 'The Killing' is currently finishing their second season on AMC. Be sure to check out season one on Netflix.

Netflix User Rating: 269,129 ratings- 4.2 stars

This show is a classic tv murder mystery, it's dark and compelling, but has a quirky humor, and artistic vision that gives a unique David Lynch feel. When High School Student, Laura Palmer is murdered, a small Pacific Northwest logging community, finds the case is anything but clear-cut. FBI agent, Dale Cooper is left to piece together the case with his strange personality, and cast of shady characters. Check out the complete series, containing a total of thirty episodes on Netflix instant watch.

Netflix User Rating: 876,402 ratings- 3.9 stars

Mystery Showdown

Best Netflix Mystery Series?

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Sci-Fi Dramas

AMC goes all Zombie Apocalypse on us... and I've loved every grueling moment of it. The Walking Dead offers more than a gruesome gut wrenching zombie series, with it's quality storyline, and complex character dynamics, The Walking Dead rightfully takes a top spot as one of the best tv shows on Netflix instant watch.

Netflix User Rating: 2,413,035 ratings- 4.5 stars

If you've never heard of 'Lost' then you've probably been living in a hole, or are one of those people who smugly enjoy saying, "I don't own a tv." As for the rest of us, 'Lost' has been a weekend eating smoke monster. This show is terribly addicting. When a commercial airliner goes down on a mysterious island the survivors realize the place they're stranded is anything but normal.This six season adventure series, journals the lives of the passengers through a deadly land, where alliances will be made to survive. Discovery the mystique of lost on your instant stream.

Netflix User Rating: 6,916,256 ratings- 3.9 stars

Battlestar Galactica on Amazon

Battlestar Galactica is a fantastic sci-fi series with 4 seasons available on Netflix instant watch. On the edge of the galaxy, lives a human civilization occupying 12 planets, known as the 12 colonies. For years the humans that occupy the colonies have been at war with a robotic race (cylons), who's goal is to exterminate humans. As the Cylons carry out attacks, the humans are forced to flee into space, leaving only one surviving spacecraft carrier, the Battlestar Galactica. This series has a Star Wars-esque feel, with action packed spaceship battles, and a cast of talented actors. Check out this top tv drama on your Netflix instant stream.

Netflix User Rating: 2,441,273 ratings- 4 stars

Best Sci-Fi Drama on Netflix instant watch

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Action Dramas

The television series 24 aired it's final episode in 2010 , concluding a successful 8 series run for the popular political tv thriller. Keifer Sutherland plays Jack Baur, a Counter Terrorism agent, who' s faced with the daily task of protecting America from various villains in this real-time drama. Each hour long episode, covers an hour of time in the show. Check out all 192 episodes on your favorite streaming device.

Netflix User Rating: 4,146,085 ratings- 3.9 stars

Following the 9-11attacks, New York City firefighter Tommy Gavin and his crew struggle to cope with the realities of losing friends and family in the World Trade Center buildings. Tommy becomes haunted by his past, as he attempts to juggle the pressures of his job, with a failing family life. This action series is full of intense drama, and has 7 full seasons available for instant watch.

Netflix User Rating: 1,365,626 ratings- 3.9 stars

Best Action Drama on Netflix instant watch

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Period Dramas

Mad Men on Amazon

Let's be real, AMC makes pure gold, and Mad Men is no exception. Fourteen Emmy's and four Golden Globes later, Mad Men is still pumping out some of the most exceptional TV drama available, and your favorite streaming service, Netflix, has the first 4 seasons available for instant watch. So, follow Donald Draper and his team of advertisers through this intriguing drama. If your looking for action this may not be the show for you, but if you appreciate griping dialogue and ripe characters, then this 1960's New York City drama, 'Mad Men' may be your next entertainment fix.

Netflix User Rating: 2,661,985 ratings- 4.2 stars

Downton Abbey


Downton Abbey, at first glance, seemed a bit outside of my interest level, but after some convincing by my sister, I gave it a chance and now I'm hooked! This series is remarkably well done, and full of outstanding performances. The British television series exposes the mindsets of the upper class in Yorkshire England, in the early 1900's. The first season aired in 2010, and is available in it's entirety on instant watch.

netflix user Rating: 802,870 ratings- 4.6 stars

Best Period Drama on Netflix instant watch

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More Great Netflix Shows

The Top 10 Reality Shows on Netflix Instant Watch

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Don't Forget...

You can watch these Top 12 Netflix instant watch shows through your Xbox 360, Playstation 3, or Wii Console. Just sign in through your Xbox Live account and sign into the Netflix app. If you need to renew your any of your Memeberships, Amazon offers the lowest prices I've seen.

What's your pick for the best show on Netflix?

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    • LVidoni5 profile imageAUTHOR

      Brian Loewer 

      5 years ago from Portland, Oregon

      I agree jcressler, AMC has to be my favorite network. Breaking Bad, The Walking Dead, The Killing, and Mad Men are all top notch shows.

    • jcressler profile image

      James E Cressler 

      5 years ago from Orlando, Florida

      The Sons, Breaking, and the Killing are all great series with surprisingly good acting and writing.

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