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5 new Netflix shows I’m excited about

Last year, you binged your way through the otherworldly “Stranger Things,” the regal drama of “The Crown,” and the heart-pounding action of “Luke Cage”. Now it’s time to look ahead to what you’ll be watching on Netflix this year. Get ready to spend some quality couch time with new shows ranging from beloved children’s book adaptations to martial-arts-powered superhero adventures.

“Anne”: Spring 2017

The 1908 novel “Anne of Green Gables” has endured over time and now stands as a literature classic. Netflix viewers will get to watch the coming-of-age story unfold over streaming video in the new adaptation “Anne.” The period piece takes place in 1890 and follows the path of Anne Shirley, a young orphan who goes to live with a spinster and her brother. Anne’s journey is a hard one, but her bright spirit ends up transforming the lives of the people around her.

Though “Anne of Green Gables” is thought of as children’s story, it’s a tale for all ages. Netflix is teaming up with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation for the production, so we can expect plenty of beautiful scenery and quality acting.

The show will honor the original book, but still branch out into new areas. “Anne and the rest of the characters will experience adventures reflecting timeless issues including themes of identity, sexism, bullying, prejudice, and trusting one’s self,” Netflix said. We can look forward to eight one-hour episodes debuting this spring, where they will be available both on Netflix and via CBC television in Canada.

“A Series of Unfortunate Events”: Available now!

Continuing with the orphan theme, one of Netflix’s most anticipated new shows for 2017 was an all-new imagining of “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events.” These unfortunate happenings started as a series of 13 dark children’s novels that were later adapted into a 2004 film starring comedian Jim Carrey. Neil Patrick Harris of “How I Met Your Mother” fame takes on Carrey’s role of the creepy Count Olaf for the new show.

In November, Netflix released a trailer showing off the series’ surreal aesthetic. We meet our family of orphans and their new guardian, who seems bent on making their lives miserable. There’s a distinct Tim Burton-meets-Wes Anderson vibe here, with plenty of hints of the combination of dark comedy, dark imagery, and mysterious happenings to come. Will the kids survive the bizarre machinations of their greedy relative? Will they learn the truth about their parents? Stay tuned.

“Something strange is going on,” said one of the three orphaned Baudelaire children the show is centered around. That’s a perfect summary of what to expect from “A Series of Unfortunate Events”. It premiered January 13; you can watch it now if you haven’t already!

“Iron Fist”: March 17

Superheroes seem to rule the film and television world these days. Iron Man isn’t the only “Iron” hero on the block. Netflix’s “Iron Fist” will bring Marvel’s Danny Rand and his Iron Fist alter ego to a wide audience this spring.

Iron Fist is all about kung-fu fighting. Rand (played by Finn Jones from “Game of Thrones”) is a billionaire described as “a living weapon.” He’s been missing for years and then suddenly shows up in New York City looking to reconnect with his past. We’re excited to see Iron Fist’s fascinating origin story unfold (Hint: it’s going to be fiery!).

Netflix’s other Marvel series, “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” and “Luke Cage” have all been both commercial and critical hits. “Iron Fist” looks to follow in those lofty footsteps while carving its own path full of flying hands and feet.

“Bill Nye Saves the World”: Spring 2017

Bill Nye, one of our nation’s most beloved nerds, is taking his Science Guy persona to Netflix with a new talk-show-style series. Nye will welcome special guests, but don’t expect to see him just sitting around and chatting for the whole episode. He will conduct experiments and give demonstrations to illustrate the topics of the day, which will range from fad diets to space exploration.

“With the right science and good writing, we’ll do our best to enlighten and entertain our audience. And, perhaps we’ll change the world a little,” said Nye in a Netflix release announcing the show. Expect Nye to bring along his trademark enthusiasm, flair for comedy, and engaging passion for science.

“The Defenders”: Later in 2017

You loved the brooding feel of “Daredevil.” You followed the gritty journey of “Jessica Jones.” You marveled at the strength of “Luke Cage.” You can’t wait to lay your eyes on the martial-arts action of “Iron Fist.” Now get ready for a supergroup gathering of all your favorites as Marvel’s “The Defenders” reaches Netflix later in the year.

We don’t have an air date yet, but we do know all the superheroes will come together for a special miniseries event. This is Netflix’s streaming version of The Avengers big-screen movies.

So far, details are scarce, but Netflix did give out this vague teaser: Our heroes will “face their biggest threat yet.” It will have to be quite a villain to top the evil forces we’ve already met in the individual series’ shows.

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