The most interesting sci-fi on Netflix?
Recently, I polished off the third and final season of Dark on Netflix. First off, the show is not nearly as horrifying as its name and anxiety-inducing music imply. If you can get beyond the music or actually appreciate the soundtrack that sounds like it's from a horror movie, you're in for a real treat. The labyrinthine plot and numerous characters spanning multiple timelines and worlds are quite fascinating.
(minor spoilers) If you know nothing about the plot going in, it's not immediately apparent this is a time travel drama. It's slowly revealed that multiple characters are moving through time and sometimes encounter their younger or older selves over the first season. Don't let the time travel aspect trick you into thinking this is a rehash of Doctor Who. It's not. The gimmick the show employs is rather clever. It turns the typical sci-fi trope of time travel being cool and fun, or at least, a net benefit upside down. Time travel is a prison, locking the characters in the same painful tragedy over and over again. The solution? Prevent time travel from being invented in the first place. Quite clever, in my opinion, and worthy of meditation on by any aspiring writer.
Of course, it's the characters that stick with the audience. Dark has a large cast of interesting characters. Some are sympathetic in one way or another, a few are despicable, and all are interesting. An ingenious gimmick is utilized with the characters that is tightly tied to the plot. The same character might be sympathetic and even likable in one timeline while that same character is totally despicable in a separate timeline. Again, a cunning use of the time travel trope.