By: Natalie O’Neil
If you’re like me, you’re probably bursting for the latest season of “House of Cards” to hit Netflix. If this is the case, you’re also probably reeling from the news that the critically-acclaimed drama isn’t returning until May 30. So what are we to do until then? Well don’t worry, because there are plenty of political shows to take your mind off your Frank Underwood withdrawal.
Here are a few of my favorites:
- “The West Wing”
This 1999 series follows the lives of several White House staff members as they navigate through the many challenges, controversies and successes of the “West Wing.” With a hint of wit and sentimentality, this classic can inspire anyone to engage in politics. Plus, you may even learn something, too! Part of the reason this show has remained such a hit is that it is both educational and entertaining. If that doesn’t sell you, I should probably mention that Rob Lowe is a recurring character. The entire series is available on Netflix.
Even if you haven’t had the chance to watch “Scandal” yet, you’ve undoubtedly heard the words “Olivia Pope.” In “Scandal,” Washington insider, political fixer and wine connoisseur Olivia Pope handles every wrongdoing, immoral behavior or reputation-collapsing act that comes her way. Usually in the most fabulous outfit you’ve ever seen, Pope – played by Kerry Washington – and her team of “gladiators” practically run the fictional world of American politics in which they live. What makes this series even more interesting is that it is loosely based on the life of a real crisis-management expert. Seasons 1-5 are available on Netflix.
- “Parks and Recreation”
For those who may need a break from the drama but not from the politics, I suggest “Parks and Recreation.” This smart sitcom starring Amy Poehler, Aziz Ansari and Chris Pratt highlights the often chaotic and always hysterical antics of Leslie Knope and her staff in the parks and recreation department of Pawnee, Indiana. The entire series is available on Netflix.
Besides “The West Wing,” my favorite political show of all time is probably “Veep.” For starters, it stars “Seinfeld” actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the uproariously funny Vice President Selina Meyer. Along with her team, of whom she frequently refers to as “idiots,” Meyer takes on the day-to-day mess that is politics. The series is an intelligent combination of utter ridiculousness and realism that gives new meaning to the phrase, “It’s funny because it’s true.” Seasons 1-5 are available on HBO GO.