Seasons: 2 seasons, 19 episodes. Starring: DeWanda Wise, Anthony Ramos, Lyriq Bent, Celo Anthony, and Chyna Layne. Description: The series is based on Spike Lee’s iconic film of the same name, which follows the story of a young woman in Brooklyn trying to juggle family, career, life, and love. Love itself seems enough to handle, as she tries to navigate three open relationships with Jamie, Mars, and Greer. Each has his own traits and characteristics, and despite her wanting to embrace this level of sexual freedom, it’s the men who struggle to accept her independence.
Why it’s a stinker: Anything written and directed by Spike Lee has the potential for greatness, but this new version doesn’t deliver on the original. However, it does a good job of capturing Brooklyn’s unique character. Bringing this story up-to-date is a tricky task, and despite not fulfilling its promise, the show was renewed for a second season. Let’s see if that one is any better than the first.
Seasons: 1 season, 13 episodes. Starring: Britt Robertson, Ellie Reed, Johnny Simmons, Alphonso McAuley, and Dean Norris. Description: Girlboss is based on Sophia Amoruso’s autobiography, which tells the story of how she launched her own fashion business while working at the San Francisco Academy of Art University as a campus safety host. Sophia, who has plenty of personal issues, learns how to run her own fashion business as she goes along, with all the challenges you might expect along the way.
Why it’s a stinker: The show feels like it’s trying too hard. Sophia may come across as she doesn’t care what people think of her, but in reality, she cares a great deal. She is right to care, as she is representing her brand and its identity, which are not well portrayed in this series. There is an abundance of profanity, so it’s not something you want to show a young girl as a model of inspiration for women in business. Something just doesn’t add up, and for that reason, it was canceled after its first season. A rare misfire for Netflix.
Hemlock Grove (WORST)
Seasons: 3 seasons, 33 episodes. Starring: Bill Skarsgård, Famke Janssen, Landon Liboiron, Penelope Mitchell, and Freya Tingley. Description: Hemlock Grove is a fictional town in Pennsylvania where strange things seem to happen. Peter Rumancek arrives in the town and befriends Roman Godfrey, heir to the town’s wealthiest family. Together they set about trying to solve some brutal mysteries that have recently taken place. The two must work together and shed light on these cases while keeping their own secrets in the dark. The show was produced by horror master, Eli Roth.
Why it’s a stinker: The premise for Hemlock Grove may not be original, but it had enough intrigue to ensure the first season was a hit. Later seasons suffered from a disjointed storyline and a lack of consistent pace. The cast was a pleasant mix of familiar and new faces, and there was plenty of horror and gore to keep the viewer on edge. However, seasons 2 and 3 felt very stop-start and as a result, received some poor reviews. The show was not renewed after its third season.
Seasons: 1 season, 10 episodes. Starring: Naomi Watts, Billy Crudup, Sophie Cookson, Lucy Boynton, Melanie Liburd, and Karl Glusman. Description: This is a psychological thriller in which Jean Holloway, played by Naomi Watts, is a psychologist who develops dangerous relationships by secretly infiltrating the lives of her patients. Finding herself completely entangled, Jean starts to behave more erratically as she tries to separate herself from this web of deception, struggling to differentiate between fantasy and reality.
Why it’s a stinker: The show was not renewed after its first season and received weak reviews overall. This was partly due to the fact that its title, Gypsy, can be used as a derogatory term for many Romani people. The cast was strong, but they seem to be dragged through this somewhat clunky storyline that never really takes flight.
Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later (WORST)
Seasons: 1 season, 8 episodes. Starring: In addition to the returning cast, the show stars Adam Scott, Alyssa Milano, Jai Courtney, Melanie Lynskey, Anne-Marie Johnson, Joshua Malina, and Dax Shepard. Description: The series brings the gang back together after 10 years. It is set both at camp and in New York City. During the reunion, it's clear how much they have all changed, and how much love still exists between them all. Beth announces her intention to sell Camp Firewood, and the group goes about trying to stop her through a set of mischievous tricks and antics.
Why it’s a stinker: Whereas part of us feel like this is a nice conclusion to a great story, there is another part that says it's always better to finish things on a high. Wet Hot American Summer: Ten Years Later leaves things at a bit of a low point. They don’t have all of the original cast, the jokes are stale, and there is no effort concerning plot or continuity. This is just an opportunity to see the same thing again, but with people wearing 90s outfits.