5 Netflix documentary series you need to watch

Stuck for what to watch next? Well look no further! I’ve put together a list of my favourite Netflix original documentary series to give you some inspiration…

The Pharmasist

February 2020

A true crime documentary series, The Pharmacist relates the efforts of Dan Schneider, a small-town pharmacist in Poydras, Louisiana, to identify his son’s killer and how this led to his gathering evidence against a prolific “pill mill” doctor in New Orleans.

source: Netflix

The Pharmacist begins by recounting the tragic death of Dan Schneider’s son, Daniel Schneider, Jr. Only 22 years old at the time, Danny Jr. was fatally shot while attempting to secure crack cocaine in New Orleans. In the series’ first episode, we see Schneider eventually take his son’s murder investigation into his own hands, fed up with the slow-pace of a police investigation without any credible leads.

With his eyes opened to the drug problem in his community Schneider soon starts to notice how many opioid prescriptions are being abused in his town and in his quest to prevent anyone suffering the same fate as his soon he decides to do something about it! 

A compelling watch from start to finish! I was so invested in The Pharmacist and his quest for justice.

Dark Tourist

July 2018

A travel documentary with a twist. In Dark Tourist New Zealand filmmaker David Farrier tours the globe visiting unusual and often macabre destinations.

“Tourism” as you know it is redefined as David Farrier sets his sights on the world of dark tourism. From nuclear tourism in Japan to Pablo Escobar-inspired tourism in Columbia, David visits the world’s grisly and offbeat destinations, meeting travellers drawn to them, and the people telling these stories day after day.

Over the course of 8 episodes David visits a range of weird and wonderful destinations including Latin America to meet the followers of Santa Muerte,  Milwaukee to learn about Jeffrey Dahmer, and to Cyprus, where he tries to sneak in to Famagusta, a walled off ghost city.

A marvellous dose of escapism about the phenomenon of dark tourism. I know I won’t ever be visiting any of these places in real life so this series is the perfect way to explore them and learn more about the people who are linked to them.

Source: Netflix

How to fix a drug scandal

April 2020

In 2013, Massachusetts State Police arrested 35-year-old crime drug lab chemist Sonja Farak for tampering with evidence: and that was only the beginning. Over time, details emerged that Farak had been in fact using the drugs that she was tasked with testing.

Source: Netflix

In How to fix a drug scandal, Erin Lee Carr follows the ripple effects of two state chemists whose faulty drug tests left more than 20,000 defendants in legal limbo. The actions of the two women, crime drug lab chemists Sonja Farak and Annie Dookhan, resulted in tens of thousands of drug counts being dismissed, the largest single mass dismissal of criminal cases in U.S. history. Dookhan and Farak didn’t know each other, and worked at opposite ends of the state, but their actions exposed how badly the system designed to streamline the “war on drugs” was being neglected.

With first-person interviews from criminal defense lawyers who fought to secure release for clients convicted with faulty evidence, state prosecutors, journalists and members of Farak’s family the series also explores the state attorney general office’s efforts to downplay the scandal in order to limit the number of convictions that would be called into question.

Another true crime series that is a fascinating watch!

Rotten

January 2018 – October 2019

As local farming fades due to profit margins deciding what food makes it to our plates. The Rotten exposes the ‘true crimes’ of today’s global food industry.

Series one explores six different areas of the food industry with series two going on to explore six more. Each episode does a deep dive including interviews with manufacturers, distributors, and others.

Exploring issues such as the alarming prevalence of fraudulent seafood in the United States and the strong-arming practices of Big Garlic (yes you read that correctly… Big Garlic). The overall arc of every episode will make you question the stuff you put in your mouth, every day. It’s certainly not one to watch while you’re eating…

Source: Netflix

Ugly Delicious

February 2018

Combining travel, cooking, and history, Ugly Delicious highlights one dish or concept per episode, and explores how it is made in different regions and how it has evolved.

Hosted by American restaurateur, author, and television personality David Chang, this series examines the cultural, sociological, and culinary history of a specific popular food per episode. From Pizza and Tacos to BBQ and home cooking, Ugly Delicious will make you crave all the food!

Chang has a range of guests join him on his journey to explore all things food, from Parks and Recreation actor Aziz Ansari to American food and music critic Jonathan Gold.

Have you seen any of these, what did you think of them? If you have any recommendations for must watch docu-series let me know in the comments!

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