Netflix is every binge watcher’s dream come true and there is an enormous variety of content to fulfill any media buffs’ appetite. You can choose from a variety of genres including comedy, action, adventure, thrillers, superhero movies or romance, but if it is the immensely popular science fiction category that interests you, this list of the best sci-fi shows on Netflix is tailor-made just for you.
Sci-Fi and Fantasy TV shows would typically involve elements like space exploration, alien invasions, imagined future, advanced technologies and the like. And if you are wondering which shows to choose, we have the answer right here.
(Please note that these titles are primarily available in the US and accessibility might vary in other regions.)
30 Best Sci-Fi Shows on Netflix
1. The Innocents
Cast- Sorcha Groundsell, Percelle Ascott, Guy Pearce
Plot- Teenage lovers June and Harry run away from their families with minimal planning. They are perturbed by an extraordinary discovery when they realize June exhibits mysterious abilities.
In addition, because of the secrets their parents did not share with them, June and Harry are thrown into this dangerous new world which tests their love to the extreme.
Watch: The Innocents
2. Lost in Space
Cast- Molly Parker, Toby Stephens, Maxwell Jenkins
Plot- The Robinson family fights against all the odds to sustain themselves on an alien planet. They have broken free after crash landing on this planet that threatens to wipe out civilization.
Moreover, surrounded by hidden dangers, they are tested to make better lives for themselves in the new world.
Watch: Lost In Space
3. Stranger Things
Cast- Winona Ryder, David Harbour, Winn Wolfhard
Plot- Set in 1983 Indiana, Stranger Things is a story of a young boy who vanishes into the air which pulls apart the constitution of an otherwise peaceful community.
As friends, family and the local police look for answers; a few locals start to decipher that there’s more than what meets the eye.
Furthermore, dark, top-secret government agencies and terrifying supernatural forces converge on the small town where everyone knows everyone.
Watch: Stranger Things
Cast- Rose Mclver, Malcom Goodwin, Rahul Kohli
Plot- Liv, a medical student-turned-zombie is posted in a morgue where dead bodies are planted in huge numbers.
In the first instance, to maintain her humanity, she’s required to eat human brains which give her an insight as to what happened to the people since most of them are murder victims.
This mysterious gift warrants her to help the police solve crimes. As the story progresses further her secret becomes public and that leads to some dangerous consequences for her and everyone she loves.
Cast- Joao Miguel, Bianca Comparato, Michel Gomes
Plot- A futuristic thriller and Netflix’s most popular original show, 3% shows a world divided into two sectors – one a virtual paradise and another drowning squalor.
Although, this is where people are given a chance to transit to the superior side, only 3% of the prospects succeed. It’s a riveting, dystopian show that is both diverse and refreshing.
6. The Good Place
Year – 2017
Cast – Kristen Bell, Ted Danson, William Jackson Harper
Plot – Eleanor Shellstrop, an ordinary woman who’s quiet self-indulgent, wakes up one day to realize she’s dead and in heaven or ‘The Good Place’.
Even though she understands that it has occurred by error, she knows she doesn’t deserve to be there.
But now she’s determined to become a better person and earn her spot in this “Good Place”. Set in an imaginative ‘heaven’, this is one of the best sci-fi shows on Netflix which has an excellent sense of humor, making it a fun series to watch.
Watch: The Good Place
7. The Flash
Cast- Grant Gustin, Candice Patton, Carlos Valdice, Daneille Panabaker
Plot- Out of the batch of DC superhero shows, The Flash has one of the most fun line-ups.
Crime Scene Investigator (CSI) Barry Allen acquires speed after being struck by lightning which he realizes after waking up from a coma.
In addition, with the power of super-speed bestowed upon him, he comes the fastest man alive and helps fight crime and super-powered villains in Central City in this live-action show.
Watch: The Flash
8. Black Mirror
Cast- Jesse Plemons, Christin Milioti, Jimmi Simpson
Plot- Black Mirror is an anthology series that explores a twisted, modern world where humanity’s most significant innovations and darkest instincts collide.
Furthermore, it taps into our collective unease with regard to the high-tech future. It highlights the fact that the technological world has more of a dystopian effect on us than utopian.
The show reflects our society in an unflattering light and represents a kind of protest that is necessary as we immerse ourselves into the technological world.
Watch: Black Mirror
9. Altered Carbon
Cast- Joel Kinnaman, James Purefoy, Martha Hingareda
Plot- This story is based on a classic cyberpunk novel of the same name by Richard K. Morgan, this show is set in a future where consciousness is digitized.
In this intriguing story of murder, love, sex, and betrayal a prisoner returns to life in a new body. Finally, with only one chance to win his freedom, he can do this by solving a seemingly unsolvable murder.
Watch: Altered Carbon
10. The Vampire Diaries
Cast- Nina Dobrev, Paul Wesley, Ian Somerhalder
Plot- After centuries of condemning each other, feuding vampire brothers Stefan and Damon return to their original town of Mystic Fall Virginia. This is where they study in a high school.
Stefan, generally seen as being altruistic and braver of the two, falls in love with a captivating teenager Elena. Damon, being more dangerous and selfish of the two, creates havoc and grapples for Elena’s affection too.
The plot is about taking revenge on his brother for turning him into a vampire. This suspenseful series has captivated the audience for over eight seasons.
Watch: The Vampire Diaries
11. Jessica Jones
Cast- Krysten Ritter, David Tennant, Rachael Taylor
Plot- Marvel’s second comic based series on Netflix, Jessica Jones is a superhero drama. Interestingly, this is where the PTSD-stricken lead character opens her detective agency in Hell’s Kitchen, New York City.
Plagued by self-loathing and haunted by her traumatic past, Jessica Jones tries rebuilding her personal life and career as a volatile private detective.
Furthermore, she has no qualms and uses her extraordinary abilities to find her tormentor before he can harm anyone else.
Watch: Jessica Jones
Cast- James Wolk, Kristen Connolly, Nonso Anozie
Plot- This show is based on a novel by James Patterson, Zoo is about a controversial zoologist and a young scientist Jackson Oz, who is trying to decipher the reason behind the sudden change causing animal species all over the world violently attack humans.
In this fast-moving show, the characters are always in peril, and it’s worth watching since real animals are used to make it look authentic.
This is a good contender as one of the best sci-fi shows on Netflix.
13. Black Lightning
Cast- Cress Williams, James Remar, Marvin Krondon Jones III
Plot- This one is based on a DC comic series by the same name. Black Lightning is about a crusading school principal Jefferson Pierce who was a superhero and is now retired. But due to a surge in local violence, he is drawn back to the secret superhero game.
After a gang threatens his family since his daughter seeks to serve justice to evil-doers, the legendary Black Lightning leaps back into action as the original African-American “electric” superhero.
Watch: Black Lightning
14. The OA
Cast- Brit Marling, Jason Isaacs, Emory Cohen
Plot- Having gone missing seven years ago, a young woman returns with mysterious new abilities and her eyesight restored.
First of all, as a child, she has gone blind after a near-death experience. But now that she can see, she has no intention of letting anyone know it.
Finally, she recruits five strangers on a secret mission, and you will be glued to your seat to see what happens next in this slow-moving suspense.
15. Kiss Me First
Cast- Tallulah Haddon, Simona Brown, Mathew Beard
Plot- This story is based on Lottie Moggach’s debut novel. Kiss Me First is a cyber thriller drama that moves between the real and animated worlds.
In this story, a 17-year-old lonely girl Leila meet Tess on a virtual reality game and befriends her. Leila’s life is forever changed as she enters into a world of new thrills and dark secrets.
Moreover, this innovative series combines live action with amazing computer generated graphics and is a solid show aimed at young adults, produced by Channel 4 and Netflix.
Watch: Kiss Me First
16. The Originals
Cast- Joseph Morgan, Daniel Gillies, Phoebe Tonkin
Plot- This spin-off of ‘The Vampire Diaries’ was nominated for the People’s Choice Award for ‘New favorite TV drama.’
The Mikaelsons, a family of power-hungry thousand-year-old vampires, move to New Orleans with the intention to reclaim the city they had helped build. It is now under the control of a diabolical vampire named Marcel.
They form an alliance with the local witches to rule the city and to dominate all those who have done them wrong. But things are never quite simple in a city where a war is brewing between the vampires, witches, and werewolves, but they are certainly fast moving and interesting.
Watch: The Originals
17. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell
Cast- Eddie Marsan, Bertie Carvel, Marc Warren
Plot- Adapted from Susanna Clarke’s best-selling fantasy novel, this series features BAFTA winning visual effects.
In this alternate history set in 1806, everyone knew magic existed, but hardly anyone practiced it.
Furthermore, set in the backdrop of 19th century England, an ambitious but arrogant magician, Norrell leads a revival of practical magic. This ignites a fierce rivalry with another practicing magician, Dr. Strange.
Do watch it for the engaging performances set against an enchanting canvas.
18. The 100
Cast- Eliza Taylor, Paige Turco, Bob Morley
Plot- Set ninety-nine years after a nuclear war destroyed civilization, The 100 is based on the 2013 book series of the same name.
Firstly, 100 juvenile space station residents are exiled to Earth in hopes of possibly re-populating the planet. Secondly, their team known as ‘The Ark’ discover that a lot can change in a century. In addition, they are also given the task to judge if the planet is habitable.
One of Netflix’s most guilty pleasures, you cannot afford to miss this one! It certainly is one of the best sci-fi shows on Netflix.
Watch: The 100
Cast- Tuppence Middleton, Brian J. Smith, Bae Doona
Plot– Sense8 is a story of eight strangers from around the world who can telepathically experience each others’ lives.
From the creators of ‘The Matrix’ and ‘Babylon 5’, Sense8 revolves around people who are mentally linked and have an intimate connection with one another.
In addition, their challenge is to find a way to survive being hunted by those who see them as a threat to the world’s order. As a series with gripping content, lots of intriguing and unexpected developments, this show has a huge fan base.
Cast- Stephen Amell, Katie Cassidy, David Ramsey
Plot- Re-inventing the DC Comics’ character Green Arrow, Arrow is about a spoiled billionaire hero Oliver Queen. Five years after his yacht is lost at sea, he returns to Starling City to find that he is pronounced dead, a lot has changed in his family, and the city is overrun with crime.
Changed by the experiences of the last few years, the billionaire playboy is determined to fight the rising crime in the city. Not a superhero, but as a vigilante, he is as dangerous as the criminals he chases.
He uses his charming personality to build a team and leverages incredible archery skills to fight evil and save his city.
21. Star Trek: The Next Generation
Cast- Patrick Stewart, Jonathan Frakes, LeVar Burton
Plot– Star Trek: The Next Generation is the first official ‘spin-off’ of the Star Trek series (which was a cult classic in the ‘60s), and it won 17 Emmys across seven seasons.
The series is set in the 24th century, decades after the adventures of the original Enterprise crew. Captain Jean-Luc leads a new multi-ship, multi-crew franchise on missions to explore new lands.
In addition, they carry out expeditions with various aliens species throughout the galaxy to distant, exotic planets to discover new life and daringly traverse unknown territories.
This is an ever-green choice as the best sci-fi shows on Netflix.
Cast- Jared Padalecki, Jenson Ackles, Mark Sheppard
Plot– Supernatural is the longest running fantasy-based television show in American history with a cosmic breed of fanatical followers.
This show is about two Winchester brothers Sam and Dean. They lost their mother to an evil supernatural force; after which their father raised them to be soldiers that hunt and annihilate evil.
They investigate paranormal activity fighting with demons, ghosts, and monsters.
Finally, one of the brothers starts to develop unnerving abilities which include death visions and visions of people dying before the actual death takes place.
Each of its seasons has an amazing storyline which will compel you to binge-watch this sci-fi/fantasy thriller.
23. The Rain
Cast- Alba August, Lucas Lynggaard Tonnesen, Mikkel Boe Folsgaard
Plot- Six years after a brutal virus carried by the rain wiped out almost all humans in Scandinavia, two Danish siblings discover that all remnants of their civilization have dissipated.
They join a band of young survivors seeking safety and answers. Furthermore, the siblings set forth on a danger-filled quest through abandoned Scandinavia, searching for any sign of life.
Finally, they discover that even in a post-apocalyptic world there’s still love, jealousy, and other issues. Their belief, that they had left all that behind with the extinction of the world they once knew, was incorrect.
Watch: The Rain
24. The Magicians
Cast- Jason Ralph, Arjun Gupta, Hale Appleman
Plot– Quentin Coldwater is a graduate student addicted to a Naria-type book series. He then finds out that the world of books is something more than just escapism.
Then, he joins an elite college which specializes in magic. Furthermore, he discovers that the fantasy world he once read about is not a myth but for real and more dangerous than imagined.
Finally, in the secretive academy full of young magicians he makes a bunch of misfit friends and unearths a real-life fantasy world that is a threat to humanity.
Watch: The Magicians
Cast- Josh Holloway, Sarah Wayne Callies, Peter Jacobson
Plot- Will Bowman, a former FBI agent and his wife Katie live in Los Angeles where aliens have invaded and now occupy the city.
First of all, they find themselves torn between appeasement and revolution and are willing to risk everything to find their lost son.
Secondly, the Colony highlights the tension between protecting your family and rebelling against the oppressive traders and offers an engaging narrative with a few scares.
A different kind of show that has made it to the best sci-fi shows on Netflix.
26. Penny Dreadful
Cast- Josh Hartnett, Eva Green, Timothy Dalton
Plot- Some of literature’s most horrifying characters- Dracula, Dorian Gray, Frankenstein, and werewolves play significant roles in this horror series set on the dark streets of Victorian London.
In this frightening psychological thriller, the lead characters unite to combat dangerous supernatural threats in London of the 1890s.
In addition, it stars a cast of heavyweights, Penny Dreadful is a new adult drama which is intense and perplexing, in a good way.
Watch: Penny Dreadful
Cast- Billy Campbell, Hiroyuki Sanada, Kyra Zagorsky
Plot– A team of scientists is thrust into a life or death situation when they arrive in the Arctic to investigate a possible outbreak of a strange disease at an international research facility.
Moreover, the scientists discover a new virus that could wipe out every human on the planet thereby threatening humankind.
This science fiction thriller has a suspenseful plot that continues to pique interest as it advances and the creators manage to do so by ratcheting up the horror quotient as the series advances.
28. The Walking Dead – The Best Zombie Sci-fi Show on Netflix
Cast- Andrew Lincoln, Steven Yeun, Norman Reedus
Plot- Based on Robert Kirkman’s comic series of the same name, The Walking Dead’s 2012 season premiere became the most watched basic cable episode ever.
At the start of the series, the main lead, Sheriff Deputy Rick Grimes gets shot, falls into a coma and finds himself in a Zombie apocalypse after waking up.
Later, he connects to a group of survivors to become their leader, and they travel together in search of a safe, secure home while battling an unending horde of Zombies.
Holding on to the hope of humanity they come together to fight for their survival while protecting their families and friends in an intense and suspenseful thriller.
Watch: The Walking Dead
Cast- Rachel Nichols, Victor Webster, Eric Knudsen
Plot– Kiera Cameron, a cop from the year 2077, finds herself trapped in present-day Vancouver.
In the search for ruthless criminals, she puts herself in trouble when the gang of condemned terrorists has escaped their sentences by traveling back in time to 2012.
Continuum blends time tested genre ingredients to deliver a sci-fi crime drama that is solidly entertaining.
Travel back and forth in time with this best sci-fi shows on Netflix.
30. Dark Matter
Cast- Marc Bendavid, Melissa O’Neil, Anthony Lemke
Plot- Based on the Dark Horse comics series of the same name, Dark Matter is the story of six people who wake up aboard a derelict spaceship with no memory of who they are or what they’re doing there.
Furthermore, on reaching their destination, they begin to look for answers and investigate the mystery of their identities and destination.
With likable characters, a concluding twist and focussing on glorious character development; Dark Matter shoots up the stakes by yielding to adventures.
Watch: Dark Matter
From new shows to streaming originals, the massive array of fantasy and sci-fi shows on Netflix are bound to keep you glued to the screen for a long time to come.
We will keep updating this list as Netflix adds new and exciting shows to its lineup. So don’t forget to bookmark this page for reference and knowing which spectacular new shows Netflix has launched.
Further Reading: 45 of The Best Comedies on Netflix For Non-Stop Laughter