Thursday, September 7, 2017

An open letter to Netflix (what I want brought to its streaming service)

Lately, it seems that every entertainment outlet wants to start its own streaming service. I'm not a big fan of that trend. I don't want that many different subscriptions. To my mind, it's sort of like if, back in the day, I'd've had to buy a separate tv to access each network. I would really prefer if all the nets could just get together and funnel their content onto a few general services, where I could get everything for one fee, or maybe even buy certain shows and movies a la carte.

The problem, of course, is that so few networks have enough shows I'm interested in that I'd want to pay for their individual apps. But truth is, even the amalgamators run a bit thin on content. Yes, even Mighty Netflix, which once seemed like it offered everything under the sun, and lately has been on a tear of releasing original programming, seems to be slim pickin's, at best.

Frankly, I've always regretted my switch from rent-by-mail DVDs to Netflix' streaming service. I get that the company can only afford so many servers (especially if it's running as deeply into the red as the rumor mill claims) but it seems like so much of what they do offer on streaming is stuff I've already seen, or crap I'd never want to watch in the first place. Case in point is the list of new offerings for September 2017. About the only thing of interest to me that I had not already seen was Gone Baby Gone — which was worth seeing, by the way, but I've got a few more things to watch this month before I'll feel like I've got my money's worth for my $10 monthly fee.

So, on the off chance that some Netflix executive should chance across my humble little blog, here then is a list of the 100 movies, shows, and original content ideas I'd like to see Netflix bring to its streaming service. The listings are given in no particular order, except that, in general, the things I want most are closer to No. 1

100. Gosford Park (2001)
The British mystery film said to be among the best works of director Robert Altman. Basically, the first draft of this list included all of the Oscar-nominated flix I've yet to see — a list that got exponentially longer with the start of the Great Recession in 2009.

99. An Education (2009)
In 2009 the Oscars went from nominating five movies for Best Picture, to 10. This one is on my list really only because it remains the only one from that inaugural expanded pack of nominees that I still have not seen.

98. Whiplash (2014)
I don't actually know anything about this other than that it was nominated for best picture, and that it stars both Supergirl and J. Jonah Jameson.

97. Bridge of Spies (2015)
Historical drama by Stephen Spielberg with Tom Hanks. Seems legit.

96. The Artist (2011)
 The black & white silent movie that won best picture.

95. The Kid (1921)
Speaking of silent movies, you'd think Netflix would keep at least one Charlie Chaplin movie in rotation.

94. The Three Stooges, 1934-1935
Why, yes, I would sit and binge watch old Three Stooges shorts. Why not start with the first 11 made during the first two years of their Columbia contract, and move on form there as demand warrants . . . and it will. Nyul, nyuk, nyuk.

93. Blondie (1938)
When I was a kid, the local NBC affiliate, WLBZ, used to air an afternoon movie showcase called The Great Money Movie. They'd call random numbers during the commercial breaks, and if you were watching and saw the secret word, you'd win however much had accumulated in the prize jackpot since the last correct guess. During this time, I'm pretty certain they aired all 187 films in the Blondie movie series. They were awesomely fun stuff as I remember it. Haven't seen any of them since. Let's start by loading up the first one and see how it goes.

92. Planet of the Apes, the Complete Series (1974)
I desperately wanted to watch this when it first aired, but it was on past my bedtime. I've always wanted to see it. It only aired 14 episodes, so it's probably awful, but I don't care — Roddy McDowell in a monkey mask will always be one of civilization's greatest achievements.

91. The Warriors (1979)
Oh, fu*k you, you know you want it. You'd watch this. You may not admit it, but you'd watch it. "Warriors, come out and play-aaaaay. Warriors, come out and play-aaaaay."

90. The Sopranos, Season 1 (1999)
Remember what I said at the onset about not wanting to pay each and every provider individually, when not all produce enough things I'm interested in? I don't subscribe to HBO and, so, have never seen a single episode of this series. Truly. Maybe Netflix can do a deal? (13 episodes)

89. Our Gang (1930-1931)
The original Little Rascals shorts can be found as bootleg editions all over YouTube, but I'd like to have fully restored, uncut versions. Although the Alfalfa years are the most well-known (and arguably best-loved) if it were up to me, I'd start with the eight shorts of the 1930-1931 season and proceed chronologically from there, going back to hit the earlier theatrical seasons if demand warrants.

88. Dead End (1937)
Speaking of movie shorts series, the Dead End Kids were always a favorite of mine. There used to be a PBS program called Matinee at the Bijou that played old cartoons, newsreels, shorts, and B-movies, and the Kids were always my favorite part of any program. The series did get a little cartoony in the later years when it pretty much devolved into Leo Gorcey and Huntz Hall caricaturing themselves, but the early films in the series — especially this one, based on a stage play of the same name from which the kids were all recruited — are great stuff. I haven't seen this in 20 years of more.

87. Popeye (1980)
I saw this once, and that was at least 35 years ago. But I don't want this on Netflix for me, necessarily. I want it for all the people who have only ever heard how awful it is. Because, if memory serves, it's not nearly as bad as everyone else seems to remember it. I think it was just ahead of its time. 

86. Little Big Man (1970)
This Dustin Hoffman pic used to air fairly regularly on tv as I recall. I seem to remember watching it several years in a row, though, like Tora, Tora Tora (until recently) I never saw it in one sitting from start to finish. As I recall, this is about the one guy who did not die in Custer's Last Stand.

85. Spy Smasher (1942)
Netflix is built around binge watching, so it seems odd they don't have any classic movie serials to offer, given that those are specifically made to keep viewers coming back for more. This one, based on the Fawcett Comics character, is said to be one of the best.

84. Flash Gordon (1980)
Netflix should also probably give us a sampling of other serials, including Captain Marvel, Zorro, Dick Tracy, Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon. But you know what that brings to mind? Oh, yeah, baby! You think it's time to relive this cheese -fest for the first time since 1980? Yes, please!

83. Sideways (2004)
Oscar-nominated mid-life crisis movie, starring Paul Giamatti and Thomas Hayden Church

82. Her (2013)
Joaquin Phoenix falls in love with Siri. Another one of the mid-life crisis movies I find myself increasingly attracted to as I approach the Big Five-Oh.

81. Pollock (2000)
The Jackson Pollock biopic, with Ed Harris in the title role.

80. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
I know this movie pretty much by heart, just from knowing about it, especially as it's one of the first things from geek culture that really crossed over into popular culture, and have seen several clips, but I have never actually sat down and watched the entire thing, start to finish. I should.

79. Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence. That should be enough to recommend it.

78. American Hustle (2013)
Also starring Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, but with the extra-special added attraction of Amy Adams. How can it be anything other than awesome?

77. The Defenders: Season 1 (1961-1962)
Before he played America's Dad in the role of Michael Brady, Robert Reed was the younger-half of a father/son law team, alongside the incomparable E. G. Marshall. Supposedly, the series focused on the law aspect of its courtroom drama, and was not a weekly whodunnit along the lines of Ironsides, or Matlock. I've never seen an episode, but those who have claim it's no wonder Reed viewed The Brady Bunch as a massive creative backslide. I'd enjoy a chance to see if this show was really as good as people say, starting with the first season. (32 episodes)

76. Manchester by the Sea (2016)
I admit I would have had just about zero interest in this, despite Casey Affleck having just won a Best Actor Oscar for it, had I not just watched Affleck in Gone Baby Gone. He probably doesn't use the Boston accent in this one, though.

75. The Fighter (2010)
I'm not a huge ban of boxing, but I was at just the right age when Rocky III came out that I remain a sucker for boxing movies to this day.

74. The Hurricane (1999) 
The Denzil Washington-helmed biopic of boxer Rubin Carter.

73. Gran Torino (2008)
 I was never into Clint Eastwood movies. Neflix should probably upload his classic spaghetti westerns, and most people love his Dirty Harry stuff. Me, I actually prefer his later work. This one I have not seen, though.

72. The Big Lebowski (1998)
Something else that's a cult classic, that I have never actually seen. Would The Dude forgive me? The Dude abides.

71. Jonny Quest, the Complete Series (1964-1965)
I would watch this. I would watch the hell out of it! I don't think I've actually seen an episode of this show since I was a kid. And Race Bannon was my first hero. (26 episodes)

70. Moonlighting, Seasons 1 and 2 (1985-1986)
Okay, after phases of wanting to grow up to be Race Bannon, Captain Kirk, and Batman, by my teens I was convinced I was going to be Bruce Willis and win over ALL the girls. This series should be on Netflix. (6 and 18 episodes)

69. WKRP in Cincinnati, Season 1 (1978-1979)
Netflix has a lot of classic tv shows, but not this one, arguably one of the best of them all. I get that this one is a toughie, because of rights issues over all the songs used as background music during the series, but Netflix should make an effort to overcome that obstacle, because, "As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly."   

68. The Deer Hunter (1978)
Not the kind of movie my mother would have let me see in 1978. No idea why I've never seen it since. Certainly, I had plenty of opportunity to rent it while video stores were still a thing. But girlfriends get to pick, and there was always some Sandra Bullock romcom in the new releases section. ALL-ways.

67. Gone Girl (2014)
Sure. Why not. 

66. War Horse (2011)
Steven Spielberg movie about a horse in World War I. I think it's basically Finding Private Seabiscuit.

65. The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Hour (1968-1978)
 When I was a kid, I lived on Warner Bros. cartoons. And while I guess I can survive the fact that Saturday mornings are not a thing anymore, it seems "desthhhhpikable," to coin a word, that these classic cartoons just don't seem to be available anywhere these days. Not even the Cartoon Network, which is more-or-less married to the Hanna-Barbera stable, is willing to play these on a regular basis. Ya know, I suspect part of the problem with Millennials is that they were not reared on a steady diet of these cartoons, like all children in history before them.

64. Fences (2016)
A Denzil Washington movie based on a Pulitzer Prize-winning play. Seems like we could do worse.

63. Star Blazers, Season 1 (1979-1980)
When I was a kid, I could tell that what the characters were saying didn't quite match the movement of their mouths, but I wouldn't know until years later that this was actually a re-dubbed version of the Japanese anime show, Space Battleship Yamato. Not that it mattered. I loved this thing! Haven't seen it since it first aired. C'mon, Netflix, cut a fella a break and bring it back!

62. Space Battleship Yamato (2010)
So, apparently, there was a live-action version of this cartoon series made in Japan in 2010, which never made it to American theaters. Sure would like to see that!

61. Good Night and Good Luck (2005)
Movie about Edward R. Murrow starring George Clooney. Not sure how I ever missed this one. Seems particularly relevant in the age of #FakeNews.

60. The Lone Ranger, Season 1 (1949-1950)
Sure, I'd relax of an evening and binge on some Clayton Moore and Jay Silverheels. Of course I would. (52 episodes)

59. Fight Club (1999)
How can I not talk about fight club if I've never even seen Fight Club?

58. The Magnificent Seven (1960)
 Yeah, not the recent remake. See, the problem with that one was that it tried to re-use the same western setting. But just as the 1960 classic I never get tired of watching was updated from feudal Japan, the new movie should have transported the concept to the rings of Saturn, or somesuch. I mean, c'mon, if Denzil Washington had starred in The Magnificent Seven in Space, tell me you would not have watched the HELL out of that. Ya, you would!

57. Seven Samurai (1954)
Speaking of. If the legend is to be believed, this is the best movie I've never seen.

56. Head (1968)
And if the legend is to be believed, this is the worst movie I've never seen. I do love me some Peter, Davy, Micky, and Mike, though. #InductTheMonkees.

55. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
It's been WAY too long since I've seen this. This should be on Netflix. Hell, the entire series should be on Netflix. Well . . . except for Crystal Skull. Fu*k Crystal Skull. That sh!t stinks.

54. The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles, the Complete Series (1992-1993)
By rights, I should have been all over this, but I never saw it. It aired during a time when I was waiting tables or a living, and just barely living at that, so I was not home much at nights to watch tv. I'd like to see what I missed. 

53. The Pianist (2002)
I think the reason I've never seen this is that I confused it with The Piano, and thought it was just some sappy chick flick.

52. Dr. Strangelove (1964)
On the list of movies I will have to watch at least once before I die.

51. Taxi Driver (1976)

50. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
ibid the ibid.

49. Doctor Who (1963-1984; 1996)
Once upon a time Netflx had a selected bevvy of old Doctor Who episodes. While we wait for the Lady Doctor to take over the TARDIS controls, I'd like Netflix to bring back ALL existing past episodes. That should keep us geeks busy for a while. Oooh! You know what else would be cool? Get David Bradley and David Troughton to film the lost First and Second Doctor episodes, maybe overdubbed with the original audio tracks, where available. Fantastic!

48. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954)
Netflix' offerings for movie musicals is pretty pathetic. It's almost as if they refuse to acknowledge the genre even exists. That needs to be righted, starting with one of my favorites! 

47. The Band Wagon (1953)
Speaking of movie musicals, this Fred Astaire vehicle is the only one on the AFI Greatest Movie Musicals list that I've never seen. How about it, Netflix? In fact, why not pair it with one from the other end of Astaire's career, 1935's Top Hat.

46. 12 Years a Slave (2013)
In the Black Lives Matter age of hating Confederate statutes, you'd think Netflix would be falling over itself to get this one loaded on to its serves

45. Captain Philips (2013)
I really know nothing about this movie, but I've seen the gif of the pirate confronting Tom Hanks on the bridge of his ship enough times I feel somehow obligated to watch the whole movie.

44. The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938)
All of Netflix streaming and not a single Errol Flynn movie. Can you believe it?! Neither can I. Here's one I wouldn't mind seeing again.

43. Captain Blood (1935)
Actually, while Robin Hood is better known, my favorite Flynn flick is his first. Haven't seen it since my VHS player broke many moons ago. Why not release this and Robin Hood as a tribute not only to Flynn, but Olivia de Havilland, still going strong at age 101. 

42. Speed (1936)
Perhaps an even bigger sin than Netflix' lack of Errol Flynn films is its utter disregard for the acting oeuvre of Jimmy Stewart. I've seen most of his films, but never this one, which was his first starring role.

41. The Stratton Story (1949)
Of course, Netflix should keep ALL Jimmy Stewart movies ready to stream at ALL times. Some, like Harvey, Rear Window, and Mr. Smith, I never get tired of watching But this biopic of ball player Monty Stratton is the best reviewed of Jimmy's movies that I have yet to see. It also won an Oscar for Best Writing, so it should be worth the time.

40. The Man from Laramie (1955)
Okay, just to pick one more Jimmy, I'm pretty sure I haven't seen this one either, although, I do have to admit, I have trouble telling one of his westerns from another.

39. The Thin Man (1934)
The first of the Nick & Nora detective series is an all-time classic, and yet I've never seen it. Honestly, I don't know how I managed that.

38. After the Thin Man (1935)
The follow-up flick, which is also notable for having an early appearance by, guess who . . . Jimmy Stewart.

37. La La Land (2016)
 Having watched all of the musical numbers on YouTube about a dozen times, each, I'm interested to see what kind of story, if any, links them together.

36. Dallas Buyers Club (2013)
 Matthew McConaughey. "Well, all right, all riiiight, all riiiiiight."

35. Argo (2012)
This one really wasn't on my radar. But having just watched Gone Baby Gone, I'm now both interested to see how this one came out, and bummed Ben Affleck is no longer directing a Batman movie.

34. All About Eve (1950)
A classic movie I've never actually seen. Bette Davis eyes, indeed.

33. The Philadelphia Story (1940)
This classic I have seen. Several times. Still a shame it's not on the Netflix, though. Ah, well, "With the rich and powerful, always a little patience." 

32. Duck Soup (1933)
It seems somehow a crime against comedy that Netflix does not have any Marx Brothers movies available for streaming. I mean, how does that even happen? And somehow, this one seems particularly relevant in these trying political times.

31. Gummo and Zeppo Are Dead (original movie)
 Okay, high concept, but hear me out — Have you ever seen Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead? Okay, this is basically that. The conceit is that all of the Marx Brothers films really happened — the brothers were con men playing different characters to perpetuate their various grafts and get-rich schemes. And just as R&G Are Dead did with Hamlet, this movie would follow Gummo and Zeppo through their various misadventures when not "on screen" in the previous films (yes, I know Gummo was never in any of the movies, but this would establish that he was always there as a supporting player, or in the background, or filling in for one of the boys — you just never knew it). I see Paul Giamatti as Gummo and Ryan Stiles as Zeppo, with Frank Ferrante as Groucho, of course. Cast Chico and Harpo as you wish.

30. Freaks and Geeks: Class Reunion (new series)
The 20th anniversary of the show debut is is right around the corner (i.e. the 35th class reunion for the elder characters) and be honest, you want to know how they all grew up. Try and tell me all this time you haven't been worried about how Lindsay and Kim's deadhead road trip turned out.

29. Tales of the Gold Monkey: The Complete Series (1982)
Just as we should never meet our heroes, we should also never go back and revisit childhood favorites. And I LOVED this short-lived tv series, in which Stephen Collins played a kind of cross between Steve Canyon and Indiana Jones. I have not seen it since it first aired, and it probably would not live up to my 14-year-old's memories of it, but I would dearly love to see it again. It also starred Roddy McDowall. No monkey mask, though. But a monkey idol, which is nearly as good. (21 episodes)

28. The Greatest American Hero: The Complete Series (1981-1983)
And speaking of fondly remembered tv shows that probably haven't held up to the test of time . . .

27. The Krofft Superstars
I'll lump them all under one listing, but as long as I'm demanding things that likely have not aged well, I would not mind at all a chance to revisit the worlds of Sid & Marty Krofft, including much-loved shows of my youth such as H.R. Pufnstuf (1969, 17 episodes), The Bugaloos (1970-1972, 17 eps), Lidsville (1971-1973, 17 eps), Sigmund and the Sea Monsters (1973-1978, 29 eps), Land of the Lost (1974-1976, 43 eps), Far Out Space Nuts (1975-1976, 15 eps), The Lost Saucer (1975-1976, 16 eps), and The Krofft Supershow (1976-1978, 32 eps) which featured such favs as Dr. Shrinker, Electra-Woman & Dynagirl, Wonderbug, Magic Mongo, and Bigfoot & Wildboy. If nothing else, I'd love for Netflix to get the first two seasons of Land of the Lost!

26. The Banana Splits Adventure Hour (1968-1970)
And, as long was we're bringing back the Krofft, I guess we should introduce a new generation to the Banana Splits, since Sid & Marty designed the costumes. True Fact: My first crush was Sour Grapes Bunch messenger Charley. (actually, that's not true. It was His Helper Emmie Jo). But really, I'd just like to see Danger Island again after 47 years. "Uh-oh, Chongo!"

25. SHAZAM! (1974-1975) and The SHAZAM!/Isis Hour (1976-1978)
Something else I have not seen since I was a kid that I imagine would play well for those busy parents who use Netflix as a babysitting service. Seems a natural given that a SHAZAM! movie is right around the corner.

24. Into the Woods (1991)
The Season 10 premier of PBS's American Playhouse featured the original Broadway cast of Into the Woods. I used to watch it on A&E, or Bravo (I forget which) before those channels became dumping grounds for parent-network product. I'd love to see it again, in part because the 2014 movie version sucked so hard.

23. Sunday in the Park with George (1985)
Speaking of Sondheim, and also the delightful Miss Bernadette.

22. Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (1982)
With Jessica Fletcher! Murder, She Sang.

21. Rent: Filmed Live on Broadway (2008)
I was not wild about the 2005 movie, even though it had much of the original cast. I think I would like this production of the last show of the original stage run better.

20. Space: 1999, Season 1 (1975-1976)
Because I want it, that's why. (24 episodes)

19. Battlestar Galactica, the Complete Original Series (1978-1979)
Yes, the 2004 series was awesome. And it's probably getting to be about time to reboot the reboot. Still, I would not mind a trip down memory lane with the original. (24 episodes)

18. Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
Sweet Jesus, how is this not on Netflix already?!

17. Hacksaw Ridge (2016)
The war movie that redeemed Mel Gibson. I adore most of Mel's movies (Braveheart, The Patriot) and I love a good ol' war flick. So, this is a must for me.

16. Glory (1989)
One of my all-time favorite movies, and one of those with such amazing performances by the entire cast that I always seem to find something new in it with every viewing.

15. 12 Angry Men (1957)
And speaking of amazing ensemble casts, this is one of my favorite flicks ever. All of the actors in it are just SO amazing, every time I watch it is like the first time all over again.

14. 12 Angry Men (new)
There have been quite a few stage revivals and even a few filmed productions of this all-time classic since 1957, but most fail to capture the real sense of conflict and claustrophobia of the original. I've long thought that it would be very cool to do a new version, but film the entire thing in one single continuous shot. I mean, that would really amp up the "you are there," aspect. I had this idea long enough ago that I initially envisioned Jack Nicholson as Juror No 3 and Philip Seymour Hoffman as Juror No. 4. I don't think Nicholson would be up to the demands of such a project these days, however, and Hoffman is dead. Today, I'd still cast Tom Hanks as Juror No. 8. Going around the table from there I think I'd go for the following: No. 1 — Kevin Spacey; No. 2 — Jonah Hill; No. 3 — Bryan Cranston; No. 4 — Christoph Waltz; No. 5 — Michael Pena ; No. 6 — John C. Reilley; No. 7 — Will Smith; No. 8 — Tom Hanks; No. 9 — Bill Murray; No. 10 — Paul Giamatti; No. 11 — Morgan Freeman (maybe as Muslin instead of Italian); No. 12 — Ben Affleck.

13. Memphis Belle (1990)
Speaking of ensemble pieces, this is a movie that for some reason is not highly rated by critics, but it's a movie I never get tired of watching. I'm sure I'd watch it three or four times before Netflix took it down, if only they'd put it up.

12. Hidden Figures (2016)
I really, really wanted to see this when it came out, but most of my theater-going dollars are reserved these days for the super-hero movies. These ladies are REAL super-heroes, though.

11. His Girl Friday (1940)
My favorite movie of all time. I used to watch it fairly regularly, but Netflix gave it the boot about 18 months ago. I'm having withdrawals. Time to bring it back!

10. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
Hasn't this been on Netflix before? Did it come down? WHY would it come down? This should never come down. This should be on Netflix ALWAYS! (Yes, I've watched it 40 times. I don't care.)

9. Master of Kung-Fu (new series)
So, I'm not all that excited about the CW's new Black Lightning series. Rather than the retired-dad-deals-with-super-hero-daughter plotline, I would have done that show along lines much closer to its original premise — retired Olympic athlete returns to teach in his inner city 'hood, coming into direct conflict with drug gangs. Moreover, I would have made it a period piece, setting it in the 1970s when crime in Metropolis (i.e. New York City) was at its worst. So, basically, think: Breaking Kotter. Alas, The CW chose to go another way. But there is still room for a similarly-themed series, and one that would fit well within Netflix' Marvel tv universe. A series set in the Hell's Kitchen of the '70s, starring The Deadly Hands of Shang-Chi, would be super-faboo, I bet. Such a show would work well on a couple of levels, giving the SJW snowflakes the Asian marital arts master they demanded of Iron First, while setting up an older Shang-Chi to appear on the other Marvel shows, particularly Daredevil, filling the mentor void left by the death of Stick.

8. 1776 (1972)
As I've noted already, Netflix is woefully deficient in its selection of movie musicals. This one is one of my favs. It is just SO well written. I've seen it 20 or 30 times, and every time I find myself on the edge of my seat, wondering if the colonies will actually declare their independence! I haven't seen it in a while, and while next July 4 would be the most obvious time to roll this out, I'd be happy to have it at any time (P.S. And please air the full uncut version, with the "Cool, Considerate Men" number).

7. American Playhouse (new series) 
The new fad of the last few years of airing live musicals is all fine and well, but I have found them all to be too overproduced. That's not what I want. What I want is for someone to simply take the cameras into an actual live performance and let me watch alongside the audience. You know, exactly like Newsies: The Broadway Musical, that's on Netflix now (and, AWESOME, by the by). If I had my way, Netflix would do just that, with a weekly 26-week series alternating plays and musicals produced along the entire breadth of American theater, from Broadway and touring shows, to regional semi-pro and even community theater productions. And, to pay the bills, I'd have them create a heavily-sponsored companion series called The Green Room, that would air in conjunction with each new show, in which we'd learn about the history and importance of that particular play or musical, and get to meet some of the cast, and learn something of the backstage crew and secrets to how the show is put on.

6. The Third Man (1949)
Starring Orson Wells and ranked by Rotten Tomatoes as the third best movie of all time, after The Wizard of Oz and Well's masterpiece, Citizen Kane — and I've never seen it!! Well, that's just wrong.

5. Batman, Season 1 (1966)
This thing was in rights hell for decades, and only finally became available on DVD a few years ago. The folks with a stake in sales must have decided by now that they've bled all they can from that particular stone, and should (I hope) be ready to start eeking dollars from this bat-tastic masterpiece from places like Netflix, for those of us who can't afford the full-season DVD collections. (34 episodes)

4. Wonder Woman, Season 1 (1975-1977)
As big a deal as the Wonder Woman movie was, I guess I don't understand how the Netflix honchos haven't realized what a natural this is. It's especially needed, I think, if rumors are true and the WWII movie will actually skip over Word War II for modern times. (tv movie + 13 episodes)

3. The Adventures of Superman, Season 1 (1952-1953)
Okay, this one is unforgivable. There's absolutely no excuse for this series not being up on Netflix already. (26 episodes) 

2. Dark Matter (new episodes)
I was deeply bummed to hear Syfy cancelled this series. It had some misses among its many hits in the latter two of its three seasons, but I enjoyed it immensely. Here's hoping Netflx might see its way toward picking up the show for a new fourth season, at least.

1. Serenity: Leaves on the Wind (new mini-series)
 Netflix honchos have said they don't think there is an audience for a revival of this short-lived albeit greatest television show of all time. More recently, there have been hints that they'd be game for a reboot, if helmed by The Mighty Joss himself. What I'd like is a 13-episode mini series that would create a bridge to a new series set in the same 'verse. To wit: "When Mal discovers his old pal Wash may have actually been a clone, created by the Alliance to help win its war against the browncoats by duplicating the skills of their greatest pilot, he gets the band back together to track down the original, only to discover Wash-Prime is pretty comfortable with the easy living of Alliance-imposed law and order, and does not particularly want to be liberated."

BONUS: Back to the Future, Part IV (original movie)
Suppose Marty McFly came down with a bad case of the Parkinson's and, after more than a decade of struggling with it, decided to steal Doc's time machine and go back in time to stop his parents from falling in love and prevent himself from ever being born.

Okay, so that's my list. What would you like to see on Netflix?

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