1. Katy Perry: Part of Me
Following the onstage and offstage action of Perry’s California Girls Tour, this musical biopic is more emotionally thrilling than you would ever imagine. The film landed a 78% on Rotten Tomatoes. (Not to mention a Teen Choice Award! Heyo!)
“Have fun. You can never take it too seriously. It’s, like, impossible.” -Skyler, 12-year-old fan
2. NYC Prep
This real-life Gossip Girl lasted only one season, and that’s a damn shame. It follows teenage NYC socialites as they date, party, and apply to Ivy League schools. Sebastian Oppenheim, the show’s most memorable player, has a name that says it all.
Notable episode: “Guest of Guests” (Ep. 1.6)
The kids land front row seats at New York Fashion Week. Sebastian flips his hair while on a date with Daniela.
Dinosaurs lasted four seasons on ABC’s TGIF lineup. Imagined by Jim Henson and seen to fruition by his son, Brian, the show is celebrated for its (once) advanced puppetry.
Notable episode: “Changing Nature” (Ep. 4.7)
The construction of a factory disrupts the entire dinosaur ecosystem, leaving the characters to cope with the imminent end of their world.
4. Ken Burns: The National Parks: America’s Best Idea
There’s no shame in watching National Parks from the comfort of your couch. (Sometimes it’s cold outside!) This critically acclaimed historical doc won two Emmys in 2010, and is a must-see for anyone who loves America.
Notable episode: “Great Nature” (Ep. 1.5)
George Takei lends his voice to tell the stories of interned Japanese immigrants and their relationship with National Parks.
5. Drop Dead Diva
The story of a thin woman reincarnated in a plus-size body, Drop Dead Diva has always garnered positive critical response. Superfans of the show refer to themselves as “Devoted Divas,” and helped resurrect the show from cancellation.
Notable episode: “The Dress” (Ep. 1.9)
Jane sues a clothing store for not carrying her size. Paula Abdul guest stars.
6. Pretty Little Liars
The story of a teen clique dealing with some seriously adult problems, this ABC Family drama is hardly “family” material. The show’s eerily upbeat theme (“Secrets” by The Pierces) sets the tone nicely, culminating with the lyric, “Two can keep a secret if one of them is dead.”
Notable episode: “The Jenna Thing” (Ep. 1.2)
A flashback reveals how the girls permanently blinded Jenna. (Yes, BLINDED). Meanwhile, Aria makes out with her English teacher because obviously she does.
7. Hobo with a Shotgun
This appropriately named exploitation thriller picked up a serious cult following after its premiere at Sundance in 2011. No need to be ashamed of liking blood and gore.
“You can’t solve all the world’s problems with a shotgun.” - Abby
“It’s all I know.” - Hobo
Every day when you’re walking down the street, everybody that you meet LOVES ARTHUR. It shouldn’t be a surprise since he’s been charming children (and adults) for 16 triumphant seasons.
Notable episode: “No Acting Please” (Ep. 13.5)
Philip Seymour Hoffman guest stars as Will Toffman, an actor who teaches the kids about theatre.
9. Sister Wives
Of all the alternative-family reality shows out there, Sister Wives might just take the cake. Shaggy-haired Kody Brown, his four wives, and his 13 children are irresistibly captivating, even when they’re doing nothing but chores around the house. No shame. Just wives.
Notable episode: “Teen Sex Talk” (Ep. 3.3)
The Brown children go out with friends in Las Vegas (where the family has recently relocated), and father Kody feels inclined to give them “the talk.”
10. TEDTalks: Sex, Secrets, & Love
Showcasing the brightest and most innovative minds in the world, TED has been finding “ideas worth spreading” since 1984. The Sex, Secrets & Love series might make you blush, but you’ll be grateful for everything you learned.
Notable episode: “Mary Roach: 10 Things You Didn’t Know About Orgasm” (Ep. 1.1)
It’s science! Author and researcher Mary Roach explains 10 stories of people who (ahem) “get there” in surprising ways, including one woman who can do it by just brushing her teeth.
Anyone who loves Joss Whedon (creator of Buffy, Angel, and Firefly) should feel no shame in listing this not-so-renowned drama about programmable dolls. It’s required reading for all Whedon superfans. Gotta catch ‘em all, right?
Notable episode: “Epitaph One” (Ep. 1.13)
Never airing on U.S. television, this “lost episode” premiered at Comic-Con, and was only made available through DVD release. It takes place in 2019 and is said to dramatically skew the understanding of the series.
Miley Cyrus plays Lola (LOL, get it?) in this digital teen romance. Based on a wildly popular French film of the same title (and featuring the same director), the film fizzled at the U.S. box office, opening in a mere eight states. So… if you missed your first chance to see Demi Moore play Miley’s mom, there’s no shame in putting this on your list.
“I’m not your baby anymore.” -Lola
13. Nature: Animal Odd Couples
The award-winning documentary series Nature investigates the reality of animals forging friendships. The only reason you should be ashamed to have this in your list is if you haven’t watched it yet.
Deer + dog.
14. Into the Woods
No one can deny the perfection of Woods. This filmed-for-TV version of the stage musical was broadcast in 1991 and features the original Broadway cast (including Bernadette Peters as The Witch). It’s nothing to be ashamed of streaming — unless you’re using it to practice for an audition.
“You may know what you need / But to get what you want / Better see that you keep what you have” -Baker’s Wife
15. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers
There’s a reason the Power Rangers have been fighting for almost 20 years. The original edition (Mighty Morphin) started it all, and there’s certainly no shame in honoring a pioneer.
Notable episode(s): “Green With Envy Parts 1-5” (Ep. 1.17—1.21)
An evil green ranger starts to infiltrate the team.
16. Prehistoric Disasters
This informative science doc has some seriously impressive imagery and information about what was happening before our time. It will give you some perspective, to say the least.
Notable episode: “Birth of the Planet” (Ep. 1.1)
Discover how a cataclysmic collision almost destroyed Earth, but instead led to its ABILITY TO SUPPORT LIFE! #win
17. The Killing
No shame in watching a show that was canceled twice within 14 months! The dramatically addictive drama about homicide investigators Linden and Holder will return for a fourth season exclusively on Netflix, much to the excitement of its obsessed fans.
Notable episode: “The Reckoning” (Ep. 3.8)
Holder falls into a shame spiral after a surprising loss. He seeks comfort from Linden and things… get… kissy.