The 10 most popular TV shows on Netflix right now

Exploring the thousands of titles on Netflix can be both exciting and overwhelming. Content of all types abounds, from dramas and comedies to reality shows and documentaries. There’s even a list to help narrow your decision by letting you see the most popular Netflix shows.

Every week, Netflix releases a list of the 10 most-watched TV shows over a recent seven-day period. Below, we have listed the top 10 shows in the U.S. from December 11 to December 17, along with general information about each show, including genre, rating, cast, and synopsis.

Note: There will be a description of plot points from each of the series, so consider this a spoiler warning if you haven’t watched them yet. We’ve also rounded up the best shows on Netflix, the best movies on Hulu, the best movies on Amazon Prime, and the best movies on Disney+. For Netflix fans, also check out the 10 most popular movies on Netflix right now.

The popular children’s series CoComelon is back for new songs and adventures in CoComelon Lane. The new series follows JJ and his friends at the Melon Patch Academy as they experience first-time emotions and moments. For example, seeing a fire truck, attending a pajama party, going to the dentist, riding the school bus, and getting a haircut are some of the featured adventures in the new episodes.

JJ and his friends speak to the camera for the first time. Like its predecessor, Cocomelon Lane will teach lessons and explain emotions through nursery rhymes and kid-friendly songs. If your kids love Cocomelon, they will certainly love Cocomelon Lane.

What’s better than a classic car? In Car Masters: Rust to Riches, Mark Towle and his crew from Gotham Garage restore old cars with the hope of flipping them for large profits that sometimes reach well into the six figures. The show is a cross between Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and Pimp My Ride.

Season 5 marks the introduction of Nick Smith, a power broker in the car business who helps foster high-end connections for Mark’s garage that could lead to substantial paydays. Some of the cars featured in season 5 include a 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona, a 1969 Chevrolet Chevelle, a Ferrari 360 Spider, and a Tesla.

To put it lightly, Dr. Paolo Macchiarini was a living legend in the medical world in the early 2000s. The Italian doctor was considered a revolutionary for creating synthetic trachea transplants with stem cells. This surgery allegedly could save lives. Yet, a disturbing trend started to appear when the patients who received the transplants kept dying.

Bad Surgeon: Love Under the Knife explores Dr. Macchiarini’s meteoric rise to fame. Journalists had evidence to support the theory that Dr. Macchiarini’s work was fraudulent, but his employer defended him. The docuseries explores Macchiarini’s eventual fall from grace and how it changed the landscape of the medical field.

Sheldon Lee Cooper became one of The Big Bang Theory’s most iconic characters. Travel back in time to witness the birth of a genius in Young Sheldon, the spinoff prequel to The Big Bang Theory. In the fictional town of Medford, Texas, in 1989, Sheldon Cooper (Iain Armitage) is a child prodigy with expertise in science and mathematics. Sheldon has an extraordinary mind, leading him to attend high school at age nine and college at 11.

However, being brilliant has drawbacks, especially when trying to fit in with people who love football and the church. Even his family struggles to live with Sheldon’s wisdom, but they try their best to support their son in the best way they can. Knowing where Sheldon ends up in The Big Bang Theory, fans will love exploring his childhood and seeing how these years shaped him into the man he would become.

Saving the world is hard enough, but try doing it while intoxicated. From the trio that created Cobra Kai comes the new action dramedy Obliterated. An elite team of special operatives, including Navy SEAL Chad McKnight (Nick Zano) and CIA Officer Ava Winters (Shelley Hennig), are called to Las Vegas to stop a nuclear device from destroying the entire city. The team completes the mission and saves the day, which calls for a celebration.

Let’s say the team works hard and parties harder as they celebrate with drugs, sex, and alcohol. There’s only one problem: the device was a fake, meaning the nuclear device is still active. Drunk and high, the team must fight through their headaches and save the day before their hangovers kick in.

One of the bestselling manga series of all time receives the live-action treatment in Netflix’s Yu Yu Hakusho. Yusuke Urameshi (Takumi Kitamura) is a teenager who dies while trying to shield a young boy from being hit by a car. As Yusuke looks down at his body in the afterlife, he meets a woman named Botan (Kotone Furukawa), who brings him on a journey in the spirit world.

Botan says that no one expected Yusuke to die committing a selfless act. Because of his unforeseen kindness, Yusuke does not head to heaven or hell. Instead, he gets another shot at life as an Underworld Detective, where he investigates supernatural occurrences on Earth.

Cobra Kai’s Peyton List leads School Spirits, a high school drama combining the mystery of Pretty Little Liars and the supernatural elements of Wednesday. After her shocking death, Maddie (List) wakes up in the afterlife and meets other high school kids stuck in limbo who refuse to pass on.

Because Maddie is the only one in the group who can talk to the living, she uses her powers to investigate her death. What she finds is that her death was not an accident, but a murder. Who killed Maddie? As she gets closer to the truth, Maddie uncovers dark secrets and troubling lies.

You’ve never seen World War II brought to life like this before. That’s the tagline of the new docuseries World War II: From the Frontlines. Narrated by John Boyega, the eight-part series explores WWII from all sides and depicts some of the war’s most noteworthy moments through archival footage.

Episode topics include Hitler invading Poland, Operation Barbarossa, the Battle of Stalingrad, D-Day, and the invasion of Berlin by the Allied Powers. If you are a war history aficionado, From the Frontlines will be your new favorite series. 

After four episodes in November, The Crown returns for six episodes of the sixth and final season. Part 2 picks up in the wake of the tragic deaths of Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki) and Dodi Fayed (Khalid Abdalla). Prince William (Ed McVey) and Prince Harry (Luther Ford) struggle to cope with their mother’s death.

While studying at the University of St. Andrews, William meets Kate Middleton (Meg Bellamy), the woman he will marry one day. Speaking of marriage, The Crown dives into the relationship between Prince Charles (Dominic West) and Camilla Parker Bowles (Olivia Williams) and their eventual marriage. Finally, Queen Elizabeth II (Imelda Staunton) begins her final stretch as the monarch of England. 

Add My Life with the Walter Boys to the list of popular adaptions of Wattpad novels, which include After and The Kissing Booth. The young adult series revolves around Jackie Howard (Nikki Rodriguez), a 15-year-old living a life of luxury in Manhattan. Jackie loses her family in a tragic accident, leaving her parentless. Jackie is forced to move to rural Colorado to live with her legal guardian, Katherine (Sarah Rafferty), her mother’s best friend.

Katherine lives with her husband, George (Marc Blucas), and their 10 children. While trying to navigate her new life, Jackie develops feelings for two of Katherine’s kids: Alex (Ashby Gentry), the nerd of the family, and Cole (Noah LaLonde), the troublesome former quarterback of the high school football team. Love triangles are never easy, but falling for members of your new family opens an entirely different can of worms.

Ever since Max began releasing its list of the most popular shows, there’s been a fairly consistent turnover of at least one to two shows a week. This week, however, the latest update for the 10 most popular shows on Max has all of the same series from last week. The order has changed slightly, and there were some minor deviations through the week, but once again, The Gilded Age and Hard Knocks: In Season are dominant at 1 and 2, respectively.

The only big surprise is that Max’s latest comedy series, Bookie, has risen to No. 3 on the chart in the short time since its debut. It’s too soon to predict what that means for its renewal chances because even The Gilded Age hasn’t officially gotten another season yet. But presumably, this is good news for HBO’s scripted shows, including Julia, which have consistently placed near the top of Max’s rankings on a week-to-week basis.

It’s the middle of December, and the streaming landscape is looking almost as barren as network television. There are just not a lot of new programs to go around this month, even when considering all of the major streamers. Fortunately, Netflix had the good sense to hold back some new episodes of The Crown’s final season for just such an occasion. These episodes will wrap up the entire series, so savor them while you can.

The only other notable addition this week is the second season of Prime Video’s Reacher, which should make the action fans in your family happy. Alternatively, you can catch up with last week’s new additions, including Max’s obscure German drama, Boom Boom Bruno, and Apple TV+’s John Lennon: Murder Without a Trial.

There aren’t many original movies coming to Netflix in the last few weeks of the year, but there’s at least one more big family film: Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget, a sequel nearly a quarter century in the making. We suspect that this film will soon be near the top of the most popular movies on Netflix.

In the meantime, the post-apocalyptic adventure, Love and Monsters, has proven to be a strong contender on Netflix as well. It’s even outperforming The Super Mario Bros. Movie at the moment, which is quite a feat in of itself. There’s a lot to enjoy this month, and there are still two more weeks to go before we say goodbye to 2023.

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