Once upon a time, Netflix was a service that sent DVDs out through the mail. It still offers that feature as an option, but the company has since morphed into a juggernaut of original streaming programming, offering everything from martial-arts movies to ongoing multi-season television series.
Netflix moves at a rapid production pace, so it can be hard to keep up with all the new and returning programs. We’ll help you keep on top of some of the most anticipated 2017 shows with this collection of must-see teasers and trailers.
1. New: Marvel’s Iron Fist
Netflix already has a host of Marvel superhero hits on its hands with the success of “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” and “Luke Cage.” “Iron Fist” will soon join that New York City crowd when it debuts on March 17. Netflix finally released a trailer for the series, which follows the adventures of Danny Rand (played by Finn Jones).
Rand was presumed dead in a plane crash, but he returns to New York 15 years later to step back into the family business. While he was gone, he became a martial arts expert and acquired the mystical power of a glowing superhuman fist. As Netflix teases, “...when a long-destined enemy rises in New York, this living weapon is forced to choose between his family’s legacy and his duties as the Iron Fist.” As the trailer shows, we can expect a lot of kung-fu-style action mixed with the dark atmosphere found in the other Marvel shows.
On a related note, all those Marvel superheroes are scheduled to meet up and share the bill in the upcoming Netflix miniseries “The Defenders,” which is due out sometime after “Iron Fist.” Netflix delivered a brief teaser for the supergroup way back in July 2016, but it didn’t give us much to go on. You can watch it here. All we know for sure is that our heroes will “face their biggest threat yet.”
2. Returning: “Stranger Things 2”
After Netflix's throwback series “Stranger Things” debuted in 2016, it quickly became a pop culture phenomenon thanks to the strength of its young actors, Stephen King-inspired feel, and joyful 1980s horror references. The kids are back for another round of dealing with strange beasts and a bizarre upside-down world in a teaser that ran during the Super Bowl.
“Stranger Things” returns on Halloween this year. The short teaser kicks off with an Eggo ad, a reference to one of the main character’s obsessions with the frozen waffles. Netflix isn’t giving much away about the plot, but we know it takes place a year after the events of the first season. We do get to see our heroes decked out in vintage Ghostbusters costumes and there’s a hint at a frightening-looking multi-armed creature.
The teaser really ramps up the already fever-pitch excitement level for the series. So far, YouTube watchers have racked up over 13 million views on the 30-second spot. Fans are now anxiously awaiting a full trailer.
3. Returning: “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt”
The jokes fly fast and furiously in the quirky Netflix comedy “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt,” which follows the escapades of a woman (played by likable lead Ellie Kemper) in New York City. Schmidt was once kept in an underground bunker by a cult leader, only to emerge many years later having missed out on the onward progress of the world.
The series and its entertaining cast of misfit characters earned itself a renewal for a third season. Netflix dropped an entertaining teaser trailer to coincide with the 2017 Grammy awards. The teaser shows Titus, Kimmy’s friend and roommate, performing a brief tribute to pop star Beyonce’s “Lemonade.” It’s a mere peek into the upcoming season, but it was enough to pull in over 500,000 YouTube views from fans. “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt” returns on May 19.
4. New: “Buddy Thunderstruck”
Many Netflix series may revolve around adult-focused themes, but the streaming service also caters to the kid crowd. “Buddy Thunderstruck” is a stop-motion series that follows a semi-truck-racing dog named Buddy. The trailer shows off a cast of bold animal characters, lots of squealing tires, and plenty of action-comedy flair.
The minds behind “Buddy Thunderstruck” have quite an entertainment pedigree that includes the creation of the Care Bears (cute, colorful bears that starred in their own TV series in the 1980s) and “Robot Chicken,” a stop-motion comedy. That makes for a very interesting creative combination. The series hasn’t attracted the same amount of attention as shows like “Iron Fist” or “Stranger Things,” but it could be a welcome option for families looking for a show they can all watch together. “Buddy Thunderstruck” starts streaming on March 10.
5. New: “Bill Nye Saves the World”
Science-guy Bill Nye looks like he a had a blast filming his new Netflix series. A trailer for the show answers a lot of questions about the format. It’s shaping up to be a combination of a talk show featuring guest stars mixed with lab-style experiments and segments featuring a recurring cast of science correspondents. Nye’s goofy sense of humor is on full display. The show will cover a diverse array of topics including alternative medicine, technology, and genetically modified organisms. The series debuts on April 21.