Best Netflix Original Documentaries Added to Netflix in 2018

Netflix has quickly become the king of documentaries. In 2018, the streaming service continues its dominance by adding some fantastic documentaries and docuseries. We’re going to be picking out our favorite documentaries added to Netflix so far in 2018.

Covering all manner of topics including science, travel, crime and politics, there’s been a fantastic mix of additions added so far and more are on the way.

Looking for the definitive list of documentaries regardless of the release date? Check out our best documentaries on Netflix list.

Here are our top 10 documentaries added so far in 2018.

10. Bobby Kennedy for President

Type: Docuseries (4 Parts)
Release Date: April 27th, 2018

A four-part documentary series that takes a look at the life and political career of Robert. F. Kennedy. He proposed some radical policies and was really looking to get into the White House but was sadly assassinated.

A beautifully produced docuseries that feature interviews with multiple high profile celebrities and politicians.


9. Inside the World’s Toughest Prisons

Type: Docuseries
Presenter: Raphael Rowe
Release Date: July 6th, 2018

Netflix not only picked up the first season of this prison docuseries but produced the second season and the soon to be released third season.

The second season takes a look at some of the world’s toughest prisons and takes us to Brazil, Papua New Guinea, Ukraine, and Belize. It’s an eye-opening series that provides plenty of shocks and is absolutely worth your time.


8. Take Your Pills

Type: Documentary 
Directed by: Alison Klayman
Release Date: March 16th, 2018

A drug epidemic is plaguing America at this point in time so it’s apt that Netflix released this documentary covering the controversial industry. This documentary goes to schools, workforces and sports personalities where performance drugs are taking over.


7. Somebody Feed Phil (Seasons 1 & 2)

Type: Docuseries (2 parts – 12 episodes)
Starring: Philip Rosenthal
Release Date: January 12th, 2018 & July 6th, 2018

We’ve had two courses of the new show from Philip Rosenthal who’s mostly known from his showrunning of his show Everybody Loves Raymond.

This show resembles many docuseries in the cooking genre where Phil travels around the world tasting different foods and experiencing other cultures. Where this series differs from others, is the personality of Phil which keeps you watching all the way through.


6. Mercury 13

Type: Documentary
Directed by: David Sington, Heather Walsh
Release Date: April 20th, 2018


Netflix has released some fantastic science documentaries over the years and Mercury 13 likely sits among the best. The hour and 20 minutes long documentary takes a look at a small group of female pilots who were trained for spaceflight during the 1960’s.


5. Flint Town

Type: Docuseries (8 episodes)
Directed by: Zackary Canepari, Drea Cooper, Jessica Dimmock
Release Date: March 2nd, 2018

Flint Michigan is one of the roughest areas in America plagued by problems that were never solved. The city is mostly known for their water supply problems but is also overrun with crime and this documentary series follows the underfunded police department of the area.

The series is a bleak look into modern-day America that sees a broken economy not working for the citizens or dedicated policemen and women of Flint.


4. The Staircase

Type: Docuseries (3 episodes)
Created by: Canal+
Release Date: June 8th, 2018

If you enjoyed Making a Murderer, perhaps one of the biggest docuseries to date, then you should absolutely watch this series.

The courtroom docuseries takes a look into the high-profile case of the American novelist Michael Peterson following the death of his wife back in 2001. It caused a social media storm and is sitting at an 8.1 on IMDb.


3. Dirty Money

Type: Docuseries (6 episodes)
Created by: Alex Gibney, Adam Del Deo, Yon Motskin, Lisa Nishimura, Stacey Offman, Jason Spingarn-Koff
Release Date: January 26th, 2018

To kickstart the year, Netflix dropped 6 episodes of an enlightening series called Dirty Money. The series takes a look at several different financial scandals such as the Volkswagen emissions scandal, payday loan scams and HSBC money laundering.

It’s informative, it’s disgusting and eye-opening. Episode 6 will also likely split the audience down in half as its called The Confidence Man and takes a look into the business dealings of Donald Trump.


2. Wild Wild Country

Type: Docuseries (6 episodes)
Directed by: Maclain Way and Chapman Way
Release Date: March 16th, 2018

This documentary series was released back in March and was a viral sensation for Netflix. The surreal series consisting of 6 episodes first debuted at the Sundance Film Festival and takes a look into the weird cult of Osho that took over Wasco County in Oregon.

The series was a smash hit for Netflix having scored a perfect score on RottenTomatoes.


1. Explained

Type: Docuseries (12 episodes)
Creator: Vox Media
Release Date: May 23rd (New episodes every Wednesday)

Vox is mostly known for their news website but in recent years their best creations have found their way onto their Youtube channel. In 2018, it was announced that Vox is producing a new weekly show for Netflix.

Each episode takes a look at a different subject or topic and does its best to Explain in a bitesize format. It’s absolutely perfect for Netflix and particularly those that don’t want to watch an hour-long documentary.


Which documentary or docuseries has been your favourite so far in 2018? We’ll update this post in the final month of the year to reflect the changes.

Kasey Moore

Kasey Moore is the founder and editor-in-chief of What's on Netflix. Kasey launched the site in 2013 after growing frustration with finding content on Netflix. He has an in depth understanding of the release cycles for Netflix and has developed tools to make navigating Netflix easier. Resides in Norwich in the UK.