There are lots of shows on Netflix that can take you on exhilarating journeys with their intricate and elaborate storylines, but only a few can leave you with the mind blowing realisation that the narrative was actually inspired by real events. Real life is crazy, and thanks to Netflix, you can now watch some of these events being told in excellent cinematography.
Such shows don’t only serve to entertain, they also allow us to learn more about the ridiculously extreme things that happen in our world. More often than not, I’ve felt compelled to do my own research after completing such shows, and I come away with new information that really adds value to the whole experience. That being said, here are 6 of my favourite shows that are based on true events.
Set in the 1960s amidst rising tensions between Israel and Syria, the show is based on the real-life account of the incredible Israeli spy Eli Cohen. Played by Sacha Baron Cohen, the amazing story recounts the tale of how one man deceived countless people—from his own family to very important members of the Syrian government, by pretending to be a highly-successful Syrian businessman in order to gain information for the Israeli administration.
This gripping tale is an excellent narrative filled with twists, turns, and a bold finale which will keep you on edge as you follow Eli Cohen in his quest to remain one step ahead of the Syrian forces who, over time, continually grew more and more suspicious of him.
The Spy | Watch here
Jeffrey Epstein was an incredibly rich and well-connected man in US society who was convicted of paying multiple girls below the age of 18 to give him sexually-charged massages in his mansion in Palm Beach, Florida. He used his wealth and power to groom young and desperate girls for his own sexual benefit, under the pretense of giving them a better lease in life.
This tell-all docuseries is filled with so much groundbreaking and revealing information, it will make you question what really goes on in the upper echelons of society in today’s world. It is a stark reminder of how tons of money can allow an individual to get away with a lot of things, no matter its nature.
Spoiler alert—The series ends in an interesting conspiracy surrounding Jeffrey’s death. Did he really commit suicide, or was he killed because he was going to spill the beans on other influential people in society like him, and if so, who were they?
Jeffrey Epstein: Filthy Rich | Watch here
Novelist Michael Peterson was in his home with his wife in 2001, when he heard a loud thud coming from the staircase in his house. He rushed over to see what had happened, only to find his wife lying dead and unconscious on the base of the staircase. Shocked, he called the police, but was arrested under the suspicion of murdering his own wife.
This is the premise to The Staircase. This series documents Michael’s long, 16-year-battle with the justice system to clear his name from the allegations that were brought upon him, and leaves viewers constantly searching for the elusive answer to the niggling question—did he really do it?
The Staircase | Watch here
Central Park, New York City, 1989—a white, female jogger was found dead in a bush, with clear signs of sexual assault. Five black teenagers who were spotted by policemen loitering around the area were arrested and charged for the crime, despite there being little to no evidence pointing to their guilt.
This show exposes the harsh police brutality, racism and skewed justice system that were targeted towards the African-American community in the United States of America at the time.
When They See Us | Watch Here
When this show first came out in 2015, it sparked a global renewed interest into the life of Pablo Escobar and the brutality of Colombia’s war against cocaine cartels in the 80s and 90s. The man was simply ruthless, brutal and highly-dangerous, as he rose from being a simple farmer to one of the world’s most richest and feared drug lords in history.
Narcos | Watch here
This docu-series is perfect for the basketball fan, for it tells the tale of Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen and the legendary Chicago Bulls in the 1990s. Watch this exclusive, behind-the-scenes collection of footages showcasing what goes on in the boardroom and the formula to the Bulls’ extremely dominating 6-time-championship-winning run, while learning all about the people who were instrumental in making it happen.
The Last Dance | Watch here
We're hiring lifestyle writers!